The preparation of Christmas Diners in my family fall on a different family member every year and, although it is unspoken, it is the moment of fiercest competition as 25 people gather together for a few days in the year and the host tries to outcook all previous christmases and awe everyone at the table without showing that much effort was put into it. In the spirit of the approaching holiday season with many family gatherings, here are a few tips and tricks from chefs and scientists that coud help you up the game and make this Christmas something special!
Contrast is Key
While the food itself determines the level of appreciation of the meal, the way in which it is served plays an important role as well because people seem to already judge before tasting. Many chefs put a lot of effort in plating and presentation, making sure to contrast the colours of the meal and the plate on which it is served. Scientists have found that this aesthetic trick seems to add freshness to the dish served. Additionally, for a more sophisticated trickery of the mind, serve the meal on a red plate, as this seems to decrease the amount of food consumed by your guests and allows them to save some space for the next course.
Sweetness is Round
When it comes to the dessert course, do not shy away from impressing your guests with your signature dessert but make sure you serve it in a round plate and with heavy cutlery. Although this sounds somewhat random, it has been found that both of these aspects, in some unknown way, seem to add an extra level of sophistication and rounded sweetness to the served dessert.
Lighting and Ambiance
The hue of the light cannot be too bright but has to allow one to see what they are eating. Perhaps that is quite logical, as a turkey served in cold light acquires a blueish colour that our subconscious mind does not perceive as something fresh that you should dig into. So definitely have some candlelight provide a warm flickering light at the dinner table. Additionally, setting the jolly mood at the table and kicking the meal off with some smirks always adds to the pleasantness of the meal. Why not also add some funny decorations to the dining table? A long chuckle after a meal helps return blood sugar to normal after a big meal.
Let the Christmas Charm take over and you will have, hands down, the most magical diner!
Finally, of course, the people gathered together, the conversation and puns exchanged, is the last and perhaps trivial ingredient to a successful dinner. It has been found that the enjoyment of the meal is correlated with the group size, in the company of family and friends we get into feasting mode, adding that extra something to the dinner table.