© iStock

© iStock

How to host a last-minute holiday meal

Be calm, controlled and get that oven going.

Oops. You're supposed to be hosting a dinner party for the holiday season but somehow the time just slipped away - or got stolen by Santa's little helpers - and you're faced with organizing the entire event at the very last minute. But don't panic. Depending on what kind of personality you have, you have a variety of options for pulling off the season's best holiday meal, and no one will ever know you did it with five minutes to spare.

The panicked pressure cooker

Do you tend to have a meltdown under pressure? Has the idea of organizing a dinner made you shriek like a tea kettle?

The solution: Blow off some steam and take the weight off your shoulders by asking everyone to bring their favorite starter, side dish or dessert. Not only does this take away 80% or the organization, but sharing recipes will be an instant conversation-starter.

The perfectionista

Are you known for your lists and color-coordinated closet? It might seem unthinkable that you'd forget such an event, but these things happen, or perhaps it's been sprung on you all of a sudden.

The solution: Simplify your life. Where normally you might have done a five-course meal with food and wine pairings, this time go for sophistication and simplicity, with easy-to-make fresh seasonal salads and a roast dish that you simply need to throw in the oven. No fuss, all class.

The workaholic

It's impossible for you to get out of work early to prepare, and it’s very likely that you'll be delayed by a last-minute client call.

The solution: Hire some help. There are some truly exceptional catering companies that work for all budgets and tastes. And at least the guests will have something to eat while they wait for you to finish your call…

Remember, the holiday season is all about spending time with family and friends, so take the time to enjoy the moment and all the delicious food!

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