If you're an at-home chef in search of a challenge, why not invite your friends over for a formal dinner party?
Hosting a formal dinner party takes a lot of planning and preparation and is not something you can whip together on the spur of the moment. So before you start sending out invitations, make a list of what you wish to achieve and what you will need to achieve it. The most important thing is to set a date that will allow you sufficient preparation time. You should set your dinner for at least a month in the future.
Once you've worked out the details, send out formal invitations. This article will provide you with ideas on how to word your invitations. For the best effect, write them out in calligraphy (or use a font that looks like calligraphy) on heavy parchment paper. You should give your guests at least two weeks to RSVP.
Once the invitations have been mailed, you can start working on the food and decoration arrangements. A formal dinner should have three courses – entree, main and dessert. If you're especially ambitious, you might also include appetisers, soup, salad, fish or cheese courses. Make sure your courses blend together harmoniously. For inspiration, check out the My Kitchen Rules website.
Make sure you have a large enough table and enough chairs to accommodate all your guests. For a formal dinner, you should use a table cloth and set the table with your best china, silverware and glasses. This website will show you how the guidelines for a traditional table setting. Print up a menu for each guest and place it at their seat.
When it comes to decorations, keep it simple and elegant. Fresh flowers are a sufficient centrepiece and black and white makes for a good colour scheme.
For that extra little touch, hire a waiter or enlist the help of a friend or relative to serve meals and keep the wine flowing.