If you are unable to visit family and friends, and can’t be with your nearest and dearest in person, a remote, virtual dinner party is a great option to stay in touch in a unique and meaningful way. We are here to help you with some tips on how to host an easy virtual dinner party aided by our own experience, aided by tried and tested technology!
Nailing the Tools of the Trade
- For larger groups, Zoom and Microsoft Teams are great online platforms to use
- You need 1 account per household, which is free to create. NB: ideally one person in your entire party should have paid account so call lengths are unrestricted (otherwise you’ll log back in after 40 mins)
- Nominate a tech savvy host to be responsible for creating the video call and sharing the link to it with each household attending
- We suggest opting to use a larger screen such as an iPad/tablet or laptop if available
- If you prefer to keep things simple, why not stick to your smartphone and make a video call (or use Skype, WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger if you have an account).
Make sure you mount your device of choice against something at the table, so your hands are free to raise a toast!
Bring the Guests to You!
So that you can feel “close from afar”, we have a few tips to make things a little more inclusive and fun!
PRINT A GUEST: why not get creative with some paper plates and print or draw a picture of some/each guest/s attending in the other household/s. Tape a ruler to the back of the plate and set them up with their own seat next to you at the table!
EXTRAS: or, do as the Hollywood stars do and hire some extras. Surely there’s a doll, teddy bears, ornaments, and/or framed photographs that can stand in for your guests at your end of the dinner party!
Simple Entertainment on Hand
- Suggest that ahead of time everyone prepares a little joke or a simple trivia question, such as “Which Tom Hanks film was the most popular at the Box Office?”
Ask each guest to write down their guess, and then reveal the answer! (Google is your friend here if you need a helping hand).
- Alternatively, you can ask each person to share a story, such as “speaking of meals, what’s the best meal you’ve ever had and why?”, or “where’s the one place you want to visit when we can travel again?”.
This helps everyone feel included, by taking turns talking/reading. It also makes it easier to have a proper conversation and hear each person remotely.
Food Fit for the Occasion
Virtual or not, no dinner party is complete without delicious food. To keep it easy and help you can spend as much time as possible at the table, opt for easier dishes. Some good ideas include a salad, big bowl of pasta, or a roast as the main. Some simple, fail-safe, scrumptious sides include bread and dip, and/or veges of your choice. Prepare as much as possible earlier and serve buffet/share plate style at the table.
Dress It Up
No salad is complete without a tasty dressing, and for most it’s hard to go past a good balsamic like The Pudding Lady Caramelised Balsamic 250ml. You can also mix a little in a small dish with some olive oil and sea salt and dip your crusty bread or dinner rolls in!
If you’ve already tried The Pudding Lady Caramelised Balsamic, then you know just how well it pairs with both fresh leafy greens and drizzled over beans, carrots and other veges too. If you haven’t tried it yet, you’ll love the smooth taste, with just the right amount of rich sweetness and tang.
There are also 6 other Simply Stirred Sauce varieties, such as a caramelised soy and ginger or honey mustard waiting here to give you a gourmet helping hand in just seconds.
We’d Never Forget Dessert – Never!
If you’re short on time, a super speedy crowd pleaser is a big bowl of fruit salad with cream or ice cream. Or, for something a bit more indulgent, what about a decadent chocolate and macadamia nut pudding? Our Pudding Lady puddings are ready to go in a jiffy, and are a rich, moist, balanced treat - so you can finish the night on an even sweeter note! If you’d like to explore the Pudding Lady treats range, you can do so here