Planning a Menu


Planning a menu is fun and easy. Many factors will affect your choice of menu. Are you planning a meal for only yourself, or for your family? What type of event is this? Is this a casual brunch of formal dinner? How many people have you invited?  If it is a formal get-together, then for what occasion, what time of the day, and what time of year? What are the guests’ ages, and do any guests have any dietary restrictions?  How long will be the get-together last? How much time do you have to prepare? Think about the variety of dishes.  Think of colors, textures and complementary dishes.

If you are cooking for your family, I believe the menu should be simple. You want to make sure that the food is balanced, healthy, and delicious. A simple Indian menu will include salad, a lentil soup, a vegetable dish, yogurt and bread. The meal may be finished with fruit or a simple dessert.

For a formal get-together, if your appetizers are heavy, then the dinner should be light. If the guests will be staying longer after dinner, then you can plan for a heavier dessert. Otherwise, the dessert should be light and served just after dinner. When making appetizers, I like to make sure they are light and not a substitute for my main dishes.