7 Key Tips To Menu Plan For Special Diet Dinner Parties
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Among the many different diets that people choose to follow for health, lifestyle or environmental reasons, eating clean is a different experience that is subjective. With that said, there are no unwritten rules that those following certain types of dietary restrictions – vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free and more – can’t enjoy a meal like everyone else at a dinner party. With innovations in the culinary space, it is now possible to enjoy food with plant-based replacements, gluten-free options and be mindful overall of intolerances in an individual’s diet. Here are a few helpful tips to make each of your dinner party guests feel special and included during the course of a meal.

Make Food Pretty

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The adage that ‘you eat with your eyes first’ isn’t lost on those with dietary restrictions. Besides, who doesn’t want to be greeted with a plate of food that looks inviting and beautiful? Whether you’re making a beetroot hummus for vegans or buckwheat pizzas for your gluten-free friends, use simple tricks and stick to the basics when it comes to making your food seem appealing to the eyes first.

No Alternatives

If you have dinner companions that are vegan or follow a keto diet, don’t sweat it over with the mock meats or cauliflower rice. Most restrictive diets encourage followers to enjoy vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds and grains in equal measure. Play around with flavour combinations or cooking techniques instead, to give bland or boring food a facelift instead of buying sodium-packed, pre-flavoured food that might not even taste great when eaten.

Serve Sharing Platters

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Have a couple of platters arranged with crudites, cheeses, preserves, fruits and cold cuts handy and variate them depending on how many people prefer a meatless option or a dairy-free platter. Take the time out to make elaborate patterns of ingredients on these platters so that your guests are made to feel special. Throw in a couple of heads of roasted garlic in for good measure and place small bowls of diced avocado, salsa and chips for all your guests to unanimously enjoy.

Have One Main

Ensuring that your guests with dietary restrictions aren’t forking a salad while the rest of you enjoy a piece of grilled chicken or paneer tikka, have at least one main course item on the menu that is accessible to them. While it might be understandable that a dinner party involves a lot of planning and prepping, swap a meat-based dish or one with dairy products or gluten, to one that is fairly neutral to most restrictions and arrange for a carbohydrate accompaniment like roti or rice for them to eat it with.

Also Read:

7 Amazing Vegan Sandwiches To Try

Rely On Condiments

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A game-changing way to add flavour to your food, have a couple of condiments on the table for everyone to dip or use an an accompaniment to their vegetables or meat. Keep it simple and resort to options like pickled red onions, chimichurri, green chutney or achaar – that everyone can have on their plate, without having to worry about allergies or their pre-set eating limitations. This also helps guests season their food to their liking, without the responsibility of it tasting good being borne on the cook.

Don't Exclude The Eggs

Don’t exclude the option of having egg-based dishes on the menu because they’re a humble breakfast staple. If all your guests eat eggs, have an appetizer as well as main option that everybody can enjoy. Whether it is an egg curry, egg pakodas or even devilled eggs, the protein-packed ingredient is perfect to soak up the alcohol and keep people satiated until it’s time to eat.

Ensure There Is Dessert

When you’re planning to be a whirlwind in the kitchen and cooking dinner for a large group of people, go low-effort on dessert and have one foundational option that can be eaten with a host of accompaniments. For example, make a fruit pie with a gluten-free crust and serve it with whipped cream as well as coconut cream for the vegans. That way, you cater to the need of concluding the meal with something sweet, but without the hassle of having to make multiple arrangements.