The 50th Anniversary Issue

Our 50th birthday issue is on sale now. We're celebrating five decades of great food and travel with our biggest issue yet.

Subscribe to Gourmet

Subscribe to Australian Gourmet Traveller before 27th November, 2016 and receive a Villeroy & Boch platter!

Gourmet on your iPad

Subscribe to Gourmet Traveller for your iPad.

Dinner party essentials

Arm yourself with these simple tips and tricks.

The key to throwing a memorable dinner party, while also being able to escape the kitchen while it's all happening, is putting a little thought into your menu - and the appliances you'll use to create them.

Make the most of your time
Plan ahead a little to devise which elements can be prepared in advance of the first door knock. Soup is a classic entrée, and can easily be made even a day early. In fact, roasted cauliflower soup actually benefits from extra time to develop flavour in the fridge. It's easily prepared in just half an hour and will only need to be reheated and garnished when you're ready to serve.

Another trick to keep up your sleeve is quince-glazed pork. Aside from being impressive, it's quick to prepare, and a side of make-ahead celeriac mash is an easy element to tick off your list earlier in the day.

Now that there's plenty of time to spare, cap off the night with a flourish in the form of a chocolate coconut meringue pie. This show-stopper can be made in advance and chilled. Whip up the espresso-flavoured Italian meringue closer to the pointy end of the evening, and all there will be left to do is take orders for espresso.

Table-topping essentials
A few simple touches can lend a sense of occasion to your table. Candles and flowers are essential. One grand flower arrangement makes for awkward dining; instead, place a line of three smaller bunches along the table (three is the magic, harmonious number when it comes to styling). And keep them uniform for a more streamlined effect.

To create a twinkly, warm atmosphere, groups of tealights in glasses bring a magical touch to the table. When it comes to dinnerware, underplates lend a sophisticated look, especially under soup bowls.

Tie everything together with a colourful table runner fashioned from a length of eye-catching fabric.

Dinner looks better already.

This article was brought to you by Winning Appliances.


Sign up to receive the latest food, travel and dining news direct from Gourmet Traveller headquarters.

Latest news
Meet Your Maker: Mukumono Ceramics
Small vases
Rome street style
Meet Your Maker: Sydney designer Christina Mclean
Kitchen trends: minimalist decor
Elegant placemats
Signature Collection

Find out more about the Gourmet Traveller Signature Collection by Robert Gordon Australia, including where to buy it in store and online.

Read More
things to do this autumn

Whether it's foraging for wild mushrooms in a picturesque Victorian forest or watching a film by moonlight in Darwin, we've got you covered with 20 exciting autumn experiences from around Australia.

Read More
Gourmet TV

Check out our YouTube channel for our latest cover recipes, chef cooking demos, interviews and more.

Watch Now

You might also like...

Party season recipes

Get set to party with these fun recipes perfect for entertai...

Gourmet Christmas gift guide

It’s better to give than to receive. Unless, of course, the ...

Gourmet Traveller Christmas gift guide

Looking for the perfect gift for the gourmet traveller in yo...

Mother's Day gift guide

Need inspiration for the perfect Mother's Day gift? Look no ...

Attention to detail

Bold prints and tribal accents are dominating the catwalk, a...

Glam packed

Make the case for a night on the town by stashing these spar...

Man vs wild

Gentlemen, beat a stylish winter retreat in effortless essen...

Colour coded

Liberate your inner artist and step into a colourful new wor...

Father's Day gift guide

Whether dad's a cook, an entertainer or a frequent flyer, we...

Disport yourself

Fun and fitting for sport and lounge, these urban casuals wi...

Stylish kitchen products

Looking for a statement piece for your kitchen? Or a product...

Essential travel products

Whether your travel is of the long-haul or armchair variety,...

Perfect party cakes

Looking for the perfect cake to rock your party? We've handp...

Party season products

Our favourite kitchen and travel products of the month.

2013 Christmas gift guide

From crystal desktop booze bars to designer beach towels her...

get the latest news

Sign up to receive the latest food, travel and dining news direct from Gourmet Traveller headquarters.