Letting Guests Approve Your Menu Before the Party Is a Recipe for Disaster

family eating christmas dinnerForget politics and religion! Simply discussing what you're going to eat can be a contentious topic with family. Especially around the holidays. As evidenced by a conversation that erupted on CafeMom's boards recently, simply giving your guests a sneak peek at the holiday meal menu you plan on serving could turn into an extremely stressful ordeal.  

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As if serving 75 people wasn't enough, an anonymous poster explained that her uncle is requesting special dishes for himself and his new girlfriend. When she offered to let them bring their own dish, the uncle said they'll just pass on the dinner altogether. If you think that sounds absolutely ludicrous, you're not alone!

Commenters chimed in, explaining that they "never make requests." Instead, they'll explain their food restrictions to the host and bring their own dish, if need be. With over 600 responses, most moms agreed there's NO good reason for this hostess to change her menu for two disgruntled invitees.

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Not surprised that turned out to be the consensus! Whether it's a food allergy or preference, you're vegan or counting your carbs, it seems downright RUDE to expect a host to fully alter their plans for you, lest you turn down the invitation altogether.

Sure, the exception might be a SEVERE allergy, wherein you can't even be around food that's not prepared to your specifications, but outside of that, the idea that you'd demand fish over ham, or marinara instead of meat sauce, is outrageous.

On the flip side, hostesses who run their menu by guests are just asking for trouble. You shouldn't need anyone to sign off on what you plan to serve, unless you know for sure that they have a serious dietary restriction, and in that case, really, all you have to do is mention that they're welcome to bring their own vegetarian entree or dairy-free dessert. In fact, I'd bet they'd be more than happy to -- and are accustomed to doing so in group dining situations.

I know this from firsthand experience: My husband and I have hosted Thanksgiving for his side of the family for the last three years, and several of my in-laws have a gluten allergy. In turn, we make a special point to prepare gluten-free stuffing and pies in addition to the regular fare. But that's our choice, and it's also a matter of majority rules.

Ultimately, to each host their own. It's one thing to tailor your menu to your crowd overall. But to twist yourself into knots to fulfill every guests minor whim is quite another!

How would you feel about totally overhauling your menu to suit one or two dinner guests' requests? 

 

Image via iStock.com/omgimages

 

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