How to choose your wedding menu (Part 4)

This article brought to you by Aleana’s Bridal.

Read Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 first

Menu Muse

Try to reflect the mood of your day in your choice of food to give a sense of continuity.  Delicate foods such as olives, cheeses, & tarts would suit a sophisticated wedding well, whereas comfort foods and doughnuts would fit more appropriately for a more casual, relaxed wedding.

Your food, or some of your food at least, should co-exist with your theme of the wedding.  Mermaid summer theme?  Seashell shaped cookies on the dessert table.  Disney princess wedding? Pick something creative to do with apples (Snow White)…just nothing poisonous!

Is your Wedding on Valentines Day?  Heart shaped cut out cupcakes.  You get the picture…. Check out Pinterest’s platform to serve as your Menu Muse.

Magazines, cookbooks, and even restaurant menus can provide additional ideas.  Write it all down or tear out pages to save for future reference.  If you choose a caterer, they will also offer suggestions and their professional opinion of what flavors compliment each other and what will subtly go well together for your overall food choices.

 

between courses…especially if your wedding is in the summer months because this will help really cool people off…and believe me, the dancers will appreciate!

 

You could also have your choice of mini sweets or candies to be passed out at the last minutes of the night before it comes to a close.

 

End the night on a sweet note to really enchant your audience of guests.

 Sense the Taste

Smooth & Scrumptious….Taste is one of five (or six, for the more intuitively gifted!) of our very strong senses of which we use to relate to the world and to others.  We all bond over food, as food is a common thread that has the power to connect, as well as heal us.

 

Let whatever inspires you, guide you.  Work closely with a chef to compose a menu that will be realistic and memorably exceptional to creating your wedding day dream menu.  The goal is to diversify the menu to provide your guests with a wide array of choices.   You want them to leave comfortably satisfied and…ful filled.

Reflect yourselves in the food by picking your favorite flavors from your culture or favorite country to be incorporated so that your wedding guests will think of you and remember these tastes you created in one of their distinctive senses long after your wedding.

Photo credit to Hikosaemon on Flickr.  

How to choose your wedding menu (Part 3)

This article brought to you by Aleana’s Bridal.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 first

 

Balanced vs. “Bloated or Barren”

Never leave guests for more than two-three hours without food at a maximum (This is also the key to avoid dreaded drunken behavior on behalf of anybody).  Equally to this point, you don’t want to overdo it and overfill your guests, either.  If guests are bloated from an enormous meal, this may prevent them from moving on the dance floor afterwards…and obviously, you’ll want your dance floor to be an active gathering of fun souls, not an empty space of deadbeat energy.  If the main course is going to be the heaviest, then opt for a lighter starter or dessert so nobody is overloaded.  It’s important to line your guests’ stomachs, especially if you’re hosting a booze-filled reception, but no need to stuff them.  No bride and groom want their guests leaving with a stomachache.  Opt for Satisfied vs. Stuffed!

 

Exotically Enhance and Enchant

Any venue should be able to provide you with an impressive list of possible add-ons to enhance your menu.  You might decide as an effort to keep the boundaries of your budget in line to limit your menu to just one or two enhancements.

 

Creative Tip: Have ice push-pops as a cooling snack to be served to the dancers on the dance floor in Other Considerations

If you have quite the party crew who will be dancing into the early hours, then it will be a great idea to lay on extra food towards the end…which can also mean and lead to breakfast… if the party is long enough.

 

Seasonal Savory: Consider the season as this affects choosing available ingredients that are in season while improving the overall taste of each dish.  It also determines which dishes you will be serving.  You don’t want to pass out hot soups and casseroles in hot, sunny, summery weather as well as “cold” dishes, such as salads and shrimp, may not be what people crave during colder months.

 

Are you an extra-considerate couple?  Send your “Save the Dates”/ invites out with an added notation that simply states for people to personally contact you with any food allergies that they have so that you know well in advance before choosing your meal plans.  How thoughtful & considerably cute of you!

 

Read Part 4 last

Photo credit to Hikosaemon on Flickr.  

 

How to choose your wedding menu (Part 2)

This article brought to you by Aleana’s Bridal.

Read Part 1 first

Selective Servings

In the most traditional version, a cocktail hour with hors d’oeuvres is preceded by a seated dinner of three courses: The first course is typically an artfully arranged plate of appetizer-friendly foods. The main entree usually includes a meat or fish, such as filet mignon or grilled salmon (include a separate dish for your vegetarian guests!) accompanied by a starch, such as rice or potatoes, and maybe even quinoa for your holistically fit guests, and a vegetable, like asparagus or broccoli.  Dessert may or may not be your wedding cake; some couples serve a separate dessert, something light and refreshing such as a sorbet, and save the wedding cake for later in the reception…during the “dance party.”

Forget the standard menu at weddings that you’re familiar with and go for more distinctive flavors to really give everybody something to remember from the most memorable dinner party of your life.  This can be more complicated and challenging, but also exciting.  Whether from around the world…Italian pastas & panini sandwiches, Spanish tapas, Japanese finger foods…to a particular part of your favorite country or island (Hawaiian, Southwestern, or Cajun cuisines), or from your own family’s kitchens….choose what you like & GET CREATIVE !

Dare to be Different

Varying your courses is actually a strategically smart thing to do.  If you are having seafood as a starter, (say, as a few appetizers in cocktail hour), then avoid it as a main course.  If you want a light afternoon tea followed by a formal dinner in the evening…or red wine and cheese during speeches and toasts, then go with it.  It’s YOUR day, so YOU choose…and feel free ENTIRELY to choose food that you love and want to eat…to a certain extent, of course.

 

Just remember that your guests’ culinary tastes might not be as adventurous as your own.  For the more conservative palates: limiting more exotic foods in appetizers is one way to do it.  And be sure to include kid-friendly foods if children will be at your wedding (chicken fingers, fries, individual pizzas so they can have their own little pizza party).

 

*SAFETY TIP! : Always arrange for food tastings at your venues of choice first so you are fully confident in the abilities of the chefs to pull off any designed dish that is adventurous as well as the more “safe” ones.

 

Read Part 3 and Part 4 next

Photo credit to Hikosaemon on Flickr.

 

How to choose your wedding menu (Part 1)

By Jaclyn Ianetti

How do you choose the right meal menu for your guests to enjoy at your wedding?  Some of your guests may not be picky at all, while others may be vegetarians; your cousin is a vegan, your friend a diabetic, and so on.  It would be completely overwhelming trying to please everybody 100%, but you can get creative and choose a sensible menu made for all to avoid any complaints amongst guests.

 

This table guide from HubPages can prove to be very helpful, as it’s an excellent starting point for brainstorming possible considerations:

 

“Considerations for Planning a Wedding Reception”

  1. Buffet or sit-down dinner
  2. Finger foods or hearty fare
  3. Catered or cooked by relatives or friends
  4. Indoors or outdoors
  5. Any appropriate themes for cuisine, i.e. Polynesian, Southern BBQ, Coastal seafood, etc.
  6. Dietary restrictions (OR ANY FOOD ALLERGIES OF GUESTS)
  7. Mobility of your guests (elderly people may have a harder time at a buffet)
  8. Cultural traditions
  9. Cost
  10. Number of guests
  11. Time of day
  12. Decor (flowers, candles, ice sculptures, or whatever you fancy)
  13. Logistics of serving and/or buffet lines
  14. Beverage options
  15. Wedding cake and/or other dessert

(Found on: http://hubpages.com/hub/Wedding-Food)

 

A Memorable Mix-up

Between you and your beloved groom, you’ll want to incorporate your favorite dishes that hold a special significance, yet ones that also cater to the diverse appetites of your treasured guests.

Select comfort foods from your own “streams of consciousness” that take you on a stroll down memory lane: tastes that remind you of your most cherished, past dining experiences together.  Think of your favorite vacation spot restaurant, your favorite all-time restaurant in general, or a home-cooked meal that you two make together or one that symbolizes your grandmother’s traditional touches, etc.  Use these as a sentimental nod to some of your top-of-the-list foods.

Personal touches such as keeping these things in mind may go unnoticed by your guests, but at least you two will know where the inspiration came from…and their taste buds alone will celebrate along with you, since this is an opportunity to share something intimate with all of your guests.  Combine your culinary heritage, such as having an Indian-Irish buffet, or a full blown Italian wedding.

Read Part 2,  Part 3, and Part 4

Photo credits to Steve2.0 on Flickr.