When hosting a party, your goal should be to relax, and enjoy your guests. The last thing you want to be doing is slaving in the kitchen while your friends are having all the fun! The secret to a successful event, is planning ahead so can you be the star of your own show.
Prepare dishes you're familiar with, and you know will be delicious. Now may not be the time to embark on a new recipe, unless of course you're feeling adventurous! Keep it simple, and don't be afraid to serve easy, and comforting foods such as lasagne, or mashed potatoes. Your guests will appreciate the no fuss approach to their favorite dishes. If cooking isn't your forte don't fear! Take help from the store, and put together an antipasti platter, or a fruit and cheese board paired with a bottle of good wine.
Whatever menu you choose, make what you can ahead of time. Soups, and casseroles can be prepared up to a week in advance, and reheated the day of the party. For you baking aficionados out there, dough for breads and cookies can be stored in the freezer and baked the day of the party. If you're serving a green salad, keep the dressing separate and toss it together at the last minute.
For truly effortless entertaining, host a potluck! Plan a theme, and ask your guests to bring their favorite side dish or dessert. Mexican fiesta parties are great for this because most things don't require much cooking at all. Chips and salsa anyone? Oh, and don't forget the margaritas!
No one is expecting you to be Martha Stewart, so don't stress yourself out trying to make it perfect. A simple flower arrangement, and your favorite tableware is a great start to a beautiful get together