Cooking meals for a large group of friends or family can be a pretty high-pressure situation. You've got to worry about people's likes and dislikes, different food intolerances and, to make things harder, you've also got to be a good host.
I've held a lot of impromptu dinner parties in my time, for anywhere between five and 15 people. I've learned that there a few key things to consider when it comes to the type of food that you decide to make for a group.
1. Keep it simple.
Simplicity is key when cooking for a large group of people. There's nothing more stressful than trying to create a culinary masterpiece for a dinner party, so save yourself the hassle and choose something easy.
2. Don't wear yourself out.
If the host of a dinner party is freaking out in the kitchen, you can guarantee that the guests are feeling that energy at the table. And that's not fun for anyone.
3. Utilise one-pot meals.
Slow cooked meals and one-pot dishes, where you put everything in the together, are some of the simplest and most easily scalable meals I've ever cooked. These are your best friend when cooking large meals to share.
4. Avoid baking.
If you can avoid strict recipes when cooking for a large group, you'll definitely minimise any would-be kitchen disasters. Personally, I will avoid any baking, especially soufflés. I like to be able to swap out ingredients based on what I have available in the house to keep things easy, and that's much harder with baked recipes, especially sweets.
Keep these four things in mind the next time you're making a meal to share with friends or family and I guarantee you'll have some fun in the kitchen.
Here's a look at some of my go-to meals that are really great for sharing.