It is nice to see people are being busy getting ready for the holiday season. It is a great way to spend time with your family and friends and of course, to enjoy yummy food. For first-timers or seasoned pros, putting a holiday meal on the table can be daunting, to say the least. Using an online menu planner will be a great idea to simplify the process, to save time and money and to enjoy a plentiful holiday meal with loved ones. With the help of an online menu planner, you can try out these five simple steps to ensure a meaningful and stress free holiday for you.
Plan in advance: The meals you are going to prepare should let you do the preparations well in advance. Design them specifically to take the stress out of entertaining. Use cookbooks, magazines, and online recipe collections to find what to serve and consider individual favorites, guests' food allergies and the time you have for preparing. This would help you in organizing your menu with foods that complement each other in temperature and taste. Customize your menu planner to include a colorful plate with a variety of sensory experiences. Offering a selection of choices helps ensure that everyone can find several foods they enjoy.
Compile a shopping list: After completing the menu planning exercise, start compiling your shopping list. First, find out what you have on hand and check their expiration dates. Never take a chance on an old ingredient. As menu planners let you get ready well in advance, you have the luxury of time to replace the past dated items with the newer ones. It is better to make two separate lists – one for the things that can be bought immediately and another one for the food items that need to be purchased a few days before the holiday.
Start working: The online menu planner can help you decide when to prepare each item. Check it to find whether anything can be made ahead of time and frozen. You can also write down the time you need to cook dishes in order for all of them to be done at the appropriate time. It will help you make notes such as which food to prepare each day and when to take the foods out to thaw.
Be a happy hostess: As you have mapped out all the details with your meal planner, you should be in great shape by the holiday morning. There may be little glitches, but the menu planner would guide you troubleshoot any unexpected developments. However, be ready with hospitality supplies or a pre-prepared entry in the pantry or freezer for those unexpected guests. Remember a happy and relaxed hostess makes everything taste better.
We hope that these few simple tips would help you serve a wonderful meal while staying calm, cool and collected. However, never forget to find an online menu planner before start working for this holiday season. Make some great new holiday memories and enjoy!