’Tis almost the season for celebrating the holidays over tasty food and drink. For celebrity chef and cookbook author Anna Olson, the measure of a truly great holiday get-together isn’t just how much fun her guests have. It’s also how much she’s able to relax while hosting and socializing.
“I’ve always thought that a holiday gathering can be deemed successful when, after everyone has left, you’re happy you hosted and are not feeling stressed or exhausted,” Olson says.
While that might sound challenging, Olson believes it’s achievable with planning—and with help from your kitchen appliances. To maximize good times with guests, here are her top holiday hosting tips.
Make a list and check it twice
“I rely on checklists throughout the holiday season, organizing to-dos by week, day and hours leading up to the gathering,” Olson says.
These include not only menu plans, but day-of instructions. “Pull out your platters, serving dishes, plates, cutlery and wine glasses the night before so that you won’t be scrambling right before it’s mealtime. Use sticky notes to label what each platter is for,” she suggests.
Timing isn’t everything
Hors d’oeuvres, side dishes, the turkey—timing everything that needs to go in the oven can be tricky. But Olson says the LG ProBake Convection Slide-In Range with Air Sous Vide + Air Fry simplifies this challenge because it has room for a turkey and sides, and allows you to do more at once. For instance, use the built-in large-capacity air fryer to quickly make a batch of perfectly crisp apps, such as Olson’s Squash, Tomato & Feta Turnovers, for the whole party.
“If cooking a modestly sized turkey or other roast, make use of the even airflow of your range to roast your root vegetables or keep your mashed potatoes warm at the same time,” Olson says. “Use your oven as a warmer once the turkey comes out. The low-temperature Air Sous Vide oven setting can be used to keep plates and any extra food warm.”
Connect and control appliances from anywhere
No one wants to be stuck in the kitchen while everyone else is socializing. The LG ThinQ app lets you manage certain functionalities of your appliances remotely, from any room. “The ThinQ app allows us to be present in other rooms with guests, while managing kitchen tasks,” says Olson. “The key is using the app quickly, then putting your phone down to return to the conversation.”
Whether you’re monitoring cooking time or preparing festive cocktails using slow-melting spherical Craft Ice, the ThinQ app has you covered.
No plates, no problem
Running out of serving dishes and utensils for all your courses? Olson will run a quick 33-minute express cycle on her LG TrueSteam Dishwasher, during the meal. The TrueSteam jets sanitize, clean and dry from every angle. “There’s no need to prewash,” she says. Easy-peasy.