“I can’t wait to spend hours cooking in the kitchen” said no one ever. Unless you’re some sort of aspiring Masterchef, entertaining at home should be three things: easy, fun and minimal fuss.
If, like us, you’re holding down a 9-5, the last thing you want to be doing is spending your Saturday cleaning the house and cooking up a storm for guests. Also, think of the dishes—need we say more? That’s why we’ve teamed up with McCain and their new Rustica Sourdough pizza range to show you how seriously simple entertaining can be. In six steps, swap the hosting stress for dinnertime bliss and let the good times roll.
Keep It Casual And Comfortable
Let’s be real, we’re still riding the track-pants-as-outerwear train of 2020. Increase the chances of your crew actually coming to dinner by keeping it casual. Chances are if we don’t have to get dressed up and put on makeup, we’re 90% more likely to show up. Let your team know all attire is welcome. Amp up the cosy atmosphere this winter by getting the fire going, chucking on Spotify’s 'Rainy Day' playlist and brewing some mulled wine in your slow-cooker—the Hygge vibes will be strong.
Ditch The Food Fuss
You can’t tell us you didn’t see this one coming. Between burning the roast chicken or over-salting the casserole, quite a bit can go wrong when cooking for your crew. So take it back to basics, without compromising on flavour, with McCain’s Rustica Sourdough pizzas. With three drool-worthy flavours to choose from—Salami and Four Cheese, Tuscan-Style Meatballs, and Smoked Ham with Aged Cheddar, these babies will be a hit with your guests AND your bank account. Pop a few pizzas in the oven, spin up a side salad, pour a glass of your favourite vino and consider your evening sorted. Plus, if you accidentally burn one, you can play it off as adding to the authenticity of Italian pizza—win.
Make Use Of What You’ve Got On Hand
Keep it thrifty and make use of your resources when it comes to post-dinner entertainment. Fire up the group chat and see who can contribute to the evening’s festivities. You might be able to wrangle enough ingredients to whip up some cocktails or tap into your friend's Netflix account to stream the latest flicks. If a games night is more your speed, ask each person to bring their favourite game and suddenly that’s hours of entertainment sorted. Peep our list of the best board games here for some guidance on bringing the good times.
Divvy Up The Duties
A wise person once said, "the crew that hosts together, stays together." Oh, wait... that was us. Split the duties and we can promise you’ll actually enjoy having people over. Task one mate with bringing the snacks, another with dishing up the dessert and say that you’ll cover dinner. Our top tip? Rally the team to help with clean-up after dinner, so that you’re not facing the dreaded stack of dirty dishes the next morning. 10-minutes of team effort will easily save you two hours scraping cold food off dinner plates the next day. You can’t say we didn’t warn you.
Crack Out The Conversation Cards
If your Myers-Briggs sits more on the introvert than extravert scale, minimise your responsibility to carry the chat and whip out some trusty conversation cards. These can be useful when your guests don’t spend a lot of time together, or if you’re wanting to get to know them better. You can print off a set of free conversation cards online, or jump straight to DMC (Deep Meaningful Conversation) vibes with the Insta-famous game We’re Not Really Strangers.
Treat Yourself To A Cleaner
Our ultimate lazy-person tip to hosting mates at home is to hire a cleaner the day of your event or dinner party. If you’re hosting on the weekend, this covers your usual weekend clean as well as leaving you more time to prep for the guests. Now that’s a win-win. Since the vacuuming, mopping and dusting is all taken care of, all you need to do is pop some fresh flowers in a vase, light a candle and call it a day. It’s a sure-fire way to impress your guests with absolutely minimal effort.
Forget spending precious time preparing a feast for your friends—all you need is McCain’s new Rustica pizza range available in three delicious flavours: Salami and Four Cheese, Tuscan-Style Meatballs, and Smoked Ham with Aged Cheddar and consider your night set.