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We have been diligently preparing for a wonderful Harvest Gathering and the day of the party has finally come! We hope you are prepared for a fall-filled evening with friends and foods that evokes the smells and tastes of the season. The last three posts have detailed:

Many are stressed by the day of the dinner, but we have prepared you and worked to made sure you are prepared for a successful dinner party. Today we will bring you a timeline so that the day goes smoothly. We have also complied the perfect playlist for a relaxing backdrop to your evening.

(See below for playlist and Spotify or iTunes links.)

We made our bread and Pumpkin Pie dessert the night before the party so that we would not have to worry about them the day of the party. All these dishes needed to be fresh on the evening of the party was to be warmed up.  If you have time,  fresh-made foods are always best so you could prepare the dessert and bread in the morning. We have intentionally selected a menu that allows us to be free most of the day.

The Timeline

Our guests are arriving at 7:00 pm so the below timeline outlines the appropriate timing for such an arrival time. For a different event time, simply adjust the hours to fit your plan.

  • 3:00 pm—Begin to sear the roast and make the sauce.
  • 3:30 pm—Put the roast in the oven at 325 degrees.
  • 4:30 pm—Clean and slice the parsnips, carrots, and mushrooms.

Expert Tip: You may be tempted to clean the parsnips early, but they brown. Wait until a time closer to when they are needed.

  • 5:30 pm—Place carrots, parsnips, and mushrooms in the roasting pan.
  • 5:35 pm—Prepare lettuce for salad, drain mandarin oranges, and make dressing. Put real butter on dish on the table so it can soften.
  • 6:00 pm—Slice both types of bread. Fold linen napkin in bread serving bowl and place in microwave so it is ready to heat immediately before the meal.
  • 6:30 pm—Take the roast out of the oven (make sure to check the temperature). When the roast is done, let it rest outside the pan for at least 15 minutes.

Expert Tip: Always remember meat needs to rest after it is done cooking and will continue to cook once you bring it out of the oven.

  • 6:35 pm—Make whipped cream and place in fridge.
  • 6:45 pm—Slice the roast and place on serving dish with tin foil in a warm oven. Place the roasting pan on heat and make gravy.
  • 6:50 pm—Plate the carrots, parsnips, and mushrooms on a platter and gravy in boat.
  • 7:00 pm—Guests start arriving. You are ready! Enjoy and entertain.

Mapping out your day will help you plan ahead and not feel stressed. Use your menu as a guide to what needs to be done. Having a plan in place will also allow you to relax and enjoy your guests. Have the coffee ready and brew it while you are serving dinner so you can easily give coffee out while plating the dessert. Leave the dishes until after the guests leave so no one feels obligated to help or wonders where you are. Effortless entertaining is an art that is learned. Once you feel comfortable and at ease, your guests will too.

-Happy Serving, Enjoying, and Eating!

Party Playlist

See playlist in iTunes Store

See playlist in Spotify  –  If you like the playlist, make sure to subscribe so it’s part of your playlist collection!