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The right way to serve food to guests
Guests! Adults love having them over and children pretend to love having them over. Either way, all families invite guests to their house at some point, and to prepare for their arrival, a lot of work goes on in the kitchen. Calling guests over without a feast to present is like writing with invisible ink - there is nothing to offer. Although food is a major component, what we often tend to overlook is some basic etiquette that compliments the culinary offering. Here are some common mistakes to avoid while serving food.
1 Touching cutlery and utensils the wrong way
When serving a plate or a glass, do not touch the surface from where the food is eaten or the beverage is drunk. When placing or offering cutlery, only touch the handles, and not the part that touches the food or goes in the mouth. Not only is it off-putting, but it is also unhygienic.
2 Serving yourself first
If you have invited guests, due respect should be given to them. However famished you may be, or however tired due to the preparations, it is important to serve food first to the guests before indulging yourself. This is basic courtesy which must be followed.
3 Having the correct cutlery
Many occasions at home are casual, because of which the host will not pay much heed to the serving spoon. Having to take dal with a tablespoon or salad with a fork might not be the easiest thing, and we have specific cutlery to solve the problem. Foods with gravy such as dal must be accompanied with a ladle, and dishes like chicken and corn on the cob must be accompanied with tongs. The key is to know what cutlery compliments what food.
4 Force feeding
Yes, you read it right. It is not just the kids that are force fed. Sometimes we end up doing this to our guests too! Showering too much love and attention by loading their plate forcefully with food they may not want to eat is actually quite impolite. You must allow them to eat peacefully and not hover around them, or press them for more helpings which they may not want.
5 Do not overdo
It is rightly said that simplicity is the key to sophistication. You may think it’s a good idea to present the guest with a buffet of foods to choose from, but this may not be such a good idea. Not only will a large number of dishes confuse the guest and kill their appetite, but they might also end up not even trying all the dishes. It is best to prepare a few dishes, not too little and not too many, such that your guests can get a taste of each dish.
6 Do not forget about water
Since food is the main focus, it is not uncommon for the host to forget an important aspect of a meal -- water. We get that food entices the guest, but water is a lifeline. Be it for removing food stuck in the throat, to neutralize spicy food, or to simply quench one’s thirst, water is a must on the table, and must not be forgotten as part of the menu.
7 Creating a clutter
Planning and organization is important in every walk of life, and preparing food is no different. You must be aware of the number of guests that are coming, and prepare the menu and table accordingly. There shouldn’t be an excess of dishes, neither should there be an excess of crockery on the table. Too many bowls, plates, and glasses looks untidy and it steals the focus from the delicious food.
8 Cooking as per your preference
If you have invited guests, you must take into account their tastes, likes and dislikes, and food preferences, and design the menu based on that. You should not cook food your guests may be wary of eating. For example, if your guests are allergic to shrimps, preparing them would be a sheer act of disrespect.
9 Give joy back to your guests
While good food is reason enough for guests to be happy and satiated, providing them with a holistically presentation will leave them with a good impression of you not only as a good cook, but also as a good host.
- by Republica
- by Republica