Simple Tips to Elevate Your Home Dining Experience

That recognisable ping of the microwave. The sound of “Friends” in the background. The smell of that takeout rice and chicken you all so love…again. Yes, the midweek meal routine is all too familiar to all too many. And while having a routine for lunching and dining at home, sometimes it’s worth it to put in a bit of extra effort to create a more memorable dining experience.

Source your ingredients carefully, cook your favourite meal from scratch, take out the nice dishes and create a beautiful dining setting that your stomach and loved ones will definitely indulge in. I’m not saying you should have a restaurant-like experience every night at home, but going the extra mile from time to time can feel really nice and bonding for you and your family.

With that in mind, let’s look at some of the best ways to elevate your home dining experience without too much effort.

Learn How to Cook Your Favourite Meals

Learn How to Cook Your Favourite Meals

This is probably the most important thing you can do to kick your home dining experience up a notch. Learning how to cook is a lifelong skill that will always come in handy. It’s a love affair that never truly ends and the reward is in the constant evolution of techniques, cooking ingredients and recipes.

If you haven’t put much effort into learning how to cook and understanding this form of art, you can always start today. It all begins with changing your mindset when it comes to the level of difficulty related to making meals from scratch. It really isn’t that big of a deal and it’s not hard at all. While yes, you’ll definitely need to spend more time in the kitchen and will get a little messy, preparing a good meal can be fun and the results are delicious.

In other words, cooking is all about getting out of your comfort zone and testing your skills. Plus, let’s not forget the element of self-care involved in the whole cooking process; the thing is, when you’re cooking quality food for yourself, you’re nourishing your body and mind, and restoring your sense of pride and purpose.

Set the Right Tablescape

Set the Right Tablescape

Now that you’ve made that delicious meal from scratch, have turned off your TV and put your phone away, it’s time to set the right ambience. Start with the base of your tablescape – the table cloth. If your goal is creating a truly formal dining experience in the comfort of your home, consider using table cloths as the canvas on which you’ll start creating your tablescape.

Good quality table cloths are a must when you’re trying to add a sense of sophistication to your table. Tablecloths can add warmth and texture to your table setting while also acting as a more environmentally-friendly option.

Setting your table is an excellent way to show off your creativity and showcase some décor items you love. You can include decorative serving trays, vases, bowls, and other small pieces of decor that go well with the colour palette and theme you’ve chosen for your table. Simple items like arranged fruit in a bowl or beautiful candles on top of a decorative tray can instantly make your tablescape look more upscale.

Learn the “Right” Way to Set the Table

Learn the “Right” Way to Set the Table

Putting a bit of extra thought into how you lay your table will instantly add that sense of sophistication to the ambience.

  • Start by laying out a crisp tablecloth. Put the dinner plate in the middle of the table setting
  • Place the salad plate on top of the dinner plate
  • Place the bread plate above and to the left of the salad and dinner plates. Keep the butter knife horizontally on the bread plate.
  • The dinner fork should be left of the dinner plate and the salad fork left of the dinner fork.
  • The knife should be on the right of the dinner plate
  • The spoon should be on the right of the knife.
  • The dessert spoon should be horizontally above the dinner plate.

Set the Mood with the Right Lighting

Start by turning off those harsh overhead lights and dimming down your strip lights. If you have wall-mounted lights, turn them on strategically so they emphasize any artwork pieces or architectural elements you may have in your dining room. For extra effect, add some candles. When setting the mood, it all comes down to the small touches and fine details you add.

Choose Fine Crockery and Cutlery

In most homes, the best crockery is stored in the cupboard, reserved only for the bigger holidays such as Christmas, gathering dust for the rest of the year. But why shouldn’t you use your fine crockery and cutlery more often? You deserve to indulge in the little things in life and creating memorable dining experiences for your friends and family is definitely one of them.

When it comes to levelling up your dining experience, cutlery matters a lot. Studies have shown that eating with heavier cutlery makes your food taste better. As odd as it might sound, there’s a link between the weight of your utensils and your enjoyment of the food you’re eating. Therefore, investing in high-quality cutlery that you can use on occasions like these is definitely worth it.

The same applies to wine glasses as well – make sure you choose the appropriate shape for the right beverage. There are certain rules when it comes to serving tipples, but keep in mind that, generally, certain shapes of glasses work better for specific wines. For instance, red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, is best served in glasses with a larger bowl so that the aromas and flavours of the wine can emerge easier. On the other hand, white wine is best served in glasses that have a narrow bowl that tapers slightly. This makes it easier to detect the aroma of the wine you’re drinking.

Author: Christina Stone

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