Picky eaters can be a nightmare for dinner party hosts, but how do you know whether your guests will leave your table desperately ill, or just hungry?
Alexandria Blaelock, author of Stress Free Dinner Parties: How to plan, host and enjoy your party says “You should always check what your guests do and don’t eat; if you like your guests enough to cook for them, then you probably like them enough to make a meal they will enjoy.”
Here are Blaelock’s tips for catering for picky eaters.
- Learn about dietary needs: There are three kinds of dietary choices: medical requirements (e.g., gluten free or allergen free), religious (e.g., not pork, or vegetarian), and lifestyle choices (e.g., Atkins or Paleo). Not complying with medical requirements will make your guest ill, if not kill them. The others are discretionary, but it would be kind of you to provide food within their guidelines.
- Consider variety: Guests on limited diets may often be presented with the same tedious food every time. For example, gluten intolerant people are often offered the same yukky processed bread. Why not offer something different like a fresh salad.
- Think about other health issues: We are not all as able bodied as we would like. For example, people with arthritis may lack the dexterity to eat rice with chopsticks, and people with dentures might not appreciate chewy things.
- Don’t forget about the drinks: Alcoholic drinks generally made by fermenting fruit, vegetables or grains. A gluten intolerant person can’t drink beer, and a person with a peanut allergy can’t drink nut based drinks.
- Listen to your guests: Most guests don’t want to make it difficult for you. They want you to have a good time too, so if they suggest specific dishes, follow their lead.
With Alexandria’s tips, picky eaters don’t have to ruin your dinner party before it starts; you can navigate the complexities with ease.
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