Believe it or not, cooking for a large group is easier than it seems, however there are a few key things that one needs to know to be successful and keep your sanity in check!
Plan Extra Time!
Everything about cooking for a group takes a little longer than it does when cooking for 1-4. You will be prepping extra ingredients, cooking larger sometimes thicker portions, and it goes without saying that you will have more of a mess to clean up afterwards!
So bottom line, plan in some extra time! I'm not talking anything crazy, give it an extra 15 minutes per step and you will be golden! Plus if you're done early a few minutes of down time for the host is always a bonus.
Make More Than You Think You'll Need.
It's inevitable, people will come hungry, and its always better to have leftovers than to run out of food early - save the stress, it's never fun!
So as you're cooking the various items you are serving, prep and cook about a cup more of each item, when all is said and done there will be plenty for everyone you are serving, the frustration of coming up with additional food at a moments notice is non-existant, and anything that is left can be enjoyed later on in the week or frozen into individual portions for greater convenience at a later date.
Have a Variety of Foods and Courses!
One of the key things to know/remember while feeding a large group is to have variety, afterall it is the spice of life. The more people you are feeding, the more variety you should have. for a group of 6-12 I recomend having 1-2 protein options, 2-3 sides and 1-2 deserts (fruit is usually my go to on the desert front). And for groups of 12-24+ I would suggest 2-4+ protein options, 3-6 sides and 2-4 deserts.
I know that seems like a lot of food to make, but believe me, a large group usually brings a large appetite, and that requires a lot of food (hense that whole extra time thing)!
On top of variety with the main event, I always suggest having some appies to start things off and help curb that hunger! Fresh fruits and veggies are always a great go to, as are breads, dips, pickled goodies and so many other things!
Plan A Menu and Identify any Food Restrictions.
Yes, thats right, I am yet again telling you to make a plan!
Seriously though, having a plan of attack will make your adventure easier, more efficient, and will help make you look like a pro in front of your friends and family leaving everyone asking how you do it!
So quit messing around and spend 15 minutes making a plan, its just that easy! But if you feel like extra support is the key to the planning process schedule a personalised consultation today!
I hope this helped to prepare you for your next adventure cooking for a large group, until next week!
You have an opinion, I know you do, so leave a comment and a piece of your mind!