With the warmer weather tantalizingly close, it is natural that your thoughts may begin to turn towards hosting a barbeque for all your loved ones.
Planning a barbecue is a lot of fun but can often result in the same gathering. Sometimes it is nice to change things up and create some new memories. Here are some tips to turn your barbecue into a summer night to remember.
Create your menu
The main part of a barbecue is the food. Great food can make everyone happy and keep the atmosphere alive.
It would help if you planned what to eat well in advance of the day itself. This gives you a chance to prepare as well as ask your guests to contribute if you wish. Meats are the go-to barbecue staple, but it is worth having some fish and vegetarian options for non-meat eaters. Prawns and salmon make excellent alternatives for pescatarians.
Some people would say that the range of sides is just as important as the meat, so get these prepared in the days before the event. Most things like potato salad, coleslaw and pasta salad can be made before and refrigerated to cut down on the tasks to complete on the day.
Decorating and theme
For some, the thought of a themed barbecue is not an appealing idea, but when done correctly it can add an extra layer of fun and get guests in the party mood.
Any idea you have can be made into a theme, from popular film franchises to cultural themes such as Hawaiian luau. If you do decide to go down this route, you can incorporate fun dishes into your menu to complement the theme. For example, taking inspiration from the Barbie movie could result in a beetroot and cream cheese dip or a pink fruit salad.
Your décor must also match your theme, and as the afternoon turns into evening, items can be multifunctional. Blankets can look great but can also keep guests warm as the evening draws on. Festoon lights are an easy way to reflect a theme and add atmosphere and light as the sun goes down.
Often, barbecue hosts ask their guests to contribute by bringing their own drinks. Not only does this keep the cost down but it ensures that everyone has a drink they enjoy. You could compromise and ask your guests to bring alcohol, but you will supply soft and non-alcoholic drinks.If you are considering a theme, providing drinks will add another immersive layer to the event. You could create novelty cocktails to bring out the theme. Harry Potter lovers could have drinks served in tankards or mini cauldrons and have them all fantastic colours to look like potions. If you wanted to go all out, why not hire a mixologist to make some one-of-a-kind drinks for you and your friends to marvel at?