Locked in a house and looking for some awesome ideas to replicate restaurant-like dining at home? Well, crave no more!
Ramadan in Pakistan is all about going out, devouring lip-smacking food, mingling with people, and enjoying late night outings. From enjoying the ambience of your favourite place to exploring new joints in the town, eating at a restaurant is a perfect way to escape the daily grind and munch on some delicious after-iftar delicacies.
Owing to the global crisis, many countries have announced a lockdown to slow down the spread of the virus. It means that all the leisure activities that we enjoyed during the previous Ramadans aren’t the same around this time. While nothing can replace the joy of an Iftar or Suhoor at your favourite restaurant with your family or friends, it’s not that difficult to create your own fine-dining experience with our guide and mimic restaurant-like feel at home.
So, without further ado, let’s get dining!
Restaurant-Like Dining at Home – Some Indoor Ideas for Iftar and Suhoor
Besides mouth-watering food, all the great restaurants are known to deliver an experience for all senses, including décor, ambience, music, and exceptional services. All these elements must coexist and fuse perfectly to take the shape of the best dining session that’s ideal for warm conversations and a hearty meal.
That being said, here’s a simple guide on creating a restaurant dining experience at home. Just follow the simple steps mentioned below and make a reservation at your home:
- Ambience is all about Lighting
- Reposition the Dining Table
- Take out the Fine Cutlery
- Add Some Aesthetics
- Cook Your Favourite Take Outs
- Dress Up As You Would Always Do
- Don’t Forget the Menu
- Have a Virtual Gathering
Ambience is all about Lighting
The first step to replicate a restaurant-like feel at home is to play around with the lighting in your house. We have mentioned it quite a few times, but we’ll repeat for good measure – nothing makes [or breaks] the mood like good [or bad] lighting.
So, perfect lighting can set the mood for your Iftar or Suhoor meals to an unimaginable extent. Think of the cuisine you’d like to prepare – and pick a light to go with it. If you are recreating the experience you once had at a Chinese eatery, you should add a paper lantern, and so on.
For further assistance on the subject, take a look at our recently published blog where we have discussed the best type of lighting for each room in your house.
Reposition the Dining Table
If you want to enjoy fancy dining while staying at home, you might have to make a little adjustment and move your dining table from the common room to somewhere else. We would recommend repositioning the table at the corner of the house that offers the best views and breeze. Decorate it with the finest table cloth and decorative pieces at hand.
Take out the Fine Cutlery
It is a common thing in Pakistan to have a cupboard dedicated to storing the precious cutlery that has either been inherited from our parents or has some special memory connected to it. Now is the perfect time to take out that fine cutlery that has been eating dust in the cabinet for an extended time. It can assist you in enhancing the dining experience of your family members and yourself. You can also share the story of this precious dinner set with your children while enjoying the meal at Iftar or Suhoor.
Add Some Aesthetics
The next thing on our list of essentials for creating a restaurant-like feel at home is to add some aesthetics. You don’t need to go overboard and shop for decorative items, just use anything available that can enhance your home-made restaurant experience. Candles, fairy lights, flower vases, colourful napkins – whatever pleases your eyes, set it up on the table to double the experience. The more cosy and pleasing your dining setup is, the more your family members will feel at ease and cherish the moment. Plush seating, contemporary décor, and minimalistic designs can delight your children. Not to mention, it will give them something to boast about on their Instagram feed – collect the ideas you can use to give them a unique surprise they can flaunt to their followers.
Cook Your Favourite Take Out
The most important component on the list is food when you are aiming to recreate the experience of restaurant-like dining at home. The internet is full of amazing recipes that can help you make home-cooked restaurant-quality meals within a few simple steps. We understand that cooking everybody’s favourite meal might not be an ideal thing to do, and as such, you can have a vote among the family members by presenting them shortlisted options that you usually like ordering at your favourite restaurant. You can even decide on a particular cuisine that will also help you narrow down the decorations around the dining space.
Dress Up As You Would Always Do
Let’s be honest here. It’s been months since we have actually dressed up for something. Most of us are still in sweatpants and oversized t-shirts, while showering has become the most challenging part of the day. Preparations are the most important part of eating at a restaurant. Just like how you dress up for going out, put on your favourite dress, and make this experience extra special. Take our word for it – wearing a nice pair of clothes can make your restaurant-like dining at home feel more like a night out with your family in the town.
Don’t Forget the Menu
Always remember: fine dining is not about what you eat, it is all about the experience and how well your needs are being taken care of. If we are to list down what makes eating at a restaurant different than eating at home – we cannot miss mentioning a menu.
It doesn’t have to be fancy but personal. Use an ordinary piece of paper or a chalkboard – anything that goes well with other elements you have put up for the restaurant experience at home. There are dozens of printable templates available on the internet, so you can team up with your children and ask them to help you design the menu.
While you are at it, you can also encourage them to role play as waiters and go around to take everyone’s vote for the dishes you have to finalise. Do not forget to click pictures as it will be a great keepsake of this strange time.
|Pro tip: The easiest way to win somebody’s heart is through food. While it would be a challenge to figure out somebody’s favourite food, the case is a little easier for us Pakistanis – we find our way through biryani. So, do not forget to put biryani on the menu for the main course.|
Have a Virtual Gathering
Nothing can replace the experience of sharing a meal with your favourite people. No problem if you can’t see them physically, you can always invite them to an Iftar party virtually. With dozens of video conferencing applications, technology has made it easier to socialise with people conveniently without having to put anyone at risk of catching the virus.
So, these were some ways that can help anyone recreate the experience of a restaurant-like meal at home. We have shared all the essential details in this blog that can make your experience worthwhile and satisfy your need for eating outside.
Do not forget to take a look at our Ramadan specials posts where we have shared some tips to stay hydrated, practice social distancing, and shopping during Ramadan. Let us know how you are spending your Ramadan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more creative ideas on how to make the most of social distancing, keep visiting Zameen Blog – Pakistan’s personal portal for everything lifestyle. We have many other ideas lined up for the upcoming weeks. Get our posts delivered directly to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter. Just enter your email address in the box on the right side of your screen and hit enter. Also, make us a part of your timeline by liking our Facebook page.
Before signing off, we’d recommend you to share this piece with the people you intend to invite virtually, so they can also recreate and share the experience of a restaurant-like meal at home.