Share your entertaining duties with a progressive dinner party this winter.
Have you heard about the latest entertaining trend? It’s called a progressive dinner party – where multiple courses are served at different locations throughout the night. This new concept takes the pressure off hosting duties and makes entertaining a breeze, so you only have to focus on delivering one show-stopping course. And you get to experience a variety of different cooking styles and venues while catching up with friends.
Intrigued? Here’s how to organise your own progressive party:
Gather your hosts
The first thing you need to do is make sure you have enough people on board to cover off every course. There are usually four courses, including an appetiser, starter, main and dessert so you will need one person to deliver each dish. It’s best when all hosts live in the same apartment building, street or neighbourhood so it’s easy to travel between venues throughout the night.
Pick a theme
Part of the fun of a progressive dinner is creating a theme that everyone can stick to. From an Italian night to a Hawaiian luau, the décor and delicacies served at each locaton should incorpotate this theme, allowing hosts to get creative with their offering while trying to out-do each other.
Lock in a date and time
With so many people and locations involved, it’s important to be organised with your time and make sure the event is well co-ordinated. So, pick a date and time that suits everyone and plan your route in advance, so everyone knows where they need to be. You can even create an invitation and deliver it to each attendee or host’s mailbox.
Once all the logistics are organised it’s time to start cooking. You’ll know which course you are serving well in advance, so it’s best to prepare as much of the meal beforehand as possible. A slow-cooked meal such a lamb shanks is perfect for a progressive dinner party, allowing you to set and forget – but luckily the close proximity means you can still duck in to check on its progress.
Wondering what to cook?
With each house preparing their own course you don’t have to fuss to much with your preparations – however timing is still going to be a factor in your planning. If you’re not comfortable leaving things cooking without you there, pick recipes you can prep in advance and cook in a flash.
Appetizers and cocktails
To create a relaxing atmosphere, start the night with cocktails and appetizers that set the mood for the entire event. Some of our favourite recipes include:
Remember, there are still three courses left to go, so don’t make your entrée too filling. Perhaps start with a tasty soup or salad that will leave guests wanting more. Some great menu items include:
The main dish is often the most challenging course to prepare. When it comes to progressive dinners, it’s best to choose a slow cooked dish that can simmer while you’re at the other venues but our MultiPoint MeatProbe can also help you cook your course perfectly, by switching off when it has gotten to the optimum cooking temperature. Some excellent main meal options include:
- Slow cooked herb lamb with minted pea mash
- Rolled cranberry and pistachio stuffed chicken
- Baked teriyaki salmon fillets
- Three cheese mushroom lasagne
Dessert is the sweetest part of the night. Top it all off with these show-stopping desserts that will leave your guests in awe of your culinary skills.