Christmas Past: Hosting in an intimate setting

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A little throwback to a Christmas past.  Last season, an old friend of Jay’s was in town with a beautiful new girlfriend at his side so we hosted a little get together so we could meet her and eat our fill of scrumptious holiday foods.  At the time we were waiting to move into our new house and were renting a great, little basement suite but that left space was at a premium.  However, our lack of large dinner tables nor our quaint dwellings didn’t daunt of festive decor or vast spread of eats.  Below I have detailed our menu for the event, as well as my meal prep tips for small space hosting.  So here is a little inspiration for hosting the masses no matter how grand a place you call home.

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The Menu

(Find my go-to Holiday Menu here, with links to each recipe)

My tips for small space hosting

  1. Make as many things you can ahead of time.  If you only have one oven and you are planning on roasting a bird it will monopolize your oven real estate for most of the day.  So making casseroles the day before and then giving them a quick reheat prior to serving will be a life saver.
  2. Use your stove top.  Plan dishes that don’t require the oven at all, this will help you organize your space efficiently and time your meal.
  3. Use alternative cooking devices.  I cook my rolls in the slow cooker then transfer them to the over for a quick 5 minute brown.  It is perfect.
  4. Also this is two differing tips in one.  One way to lighten your workload is to ask others to bring a dish.
    1. However, if you are anything like me and like to plan and orchestrate down to the second this may be disruptive and may actually delay your process.  So for me personally, I often find it easier to plan my meal thoroughly and just ask the guests to bring something to sip at.
  5. Make it buffets style.  That way you only have to arrange the food in one area and you don’t have to worry about passing dishes from person to person in cramped quarters.
  6. Don’t worry about asking people to eat off their laps it will give it a more casual feel but it won’t deter from the fun you will have.
  7. Decor and styling go a long way to making your space feel more intimate and less restricted.  So organize you food, and pay attention to the details.  That is what your guests will remember and enjoy, not them bumping elbows or huddling together on a small chaise lounge. Promise.
  8. Most Importantly: Be adventurous.  Don’t assume you can’t create that Pinterest worthy dish because of your residential limitations.  Believe me you will be surprised what you can muster in your home kitchen with a little will and ingenuity.

Over the following weeks of the holidays I will post some of my recipes from this meal.

Until then Merry Christmas.

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