Last year, I was asked to cater a Christmas event for 60 people. I like to make fancy food, but I’m no caterer! It was pretty stressful, but it turned out pretty well and I learned a few things along the way. Maybe you can use some of my tips for creating your next holiday menu.
Create Easy And Elegant Holiday Events For A Crowd
Make It Tiny
Pretty much any food you make will be fancy if you hit it with the shrink-o-ray. Burgers, cheesecakes, meat loaves, shepherd’s pie, cookies, you name it, you can make it tiny! This is great news if your go-to recipes are homey favorites that seem a little too “weeknight supper” for a holiday. Novelty makes for a fun event and small bites mean everyone can get a taste.
Find a few new favorites (and our tried and true recipes) at the TOTS Family Recipe Index.
Put It On A Stick
Instead of a Cobb salad, why not put a bite of each ingredient on a skewer with a little cup of dressing on the side for dipping? Fruit kabobs are also fun and a healthy, gluten free dessert.
Choose A Few Easy Holiday Favorites
Fussy food is fun to present, especially at a holiday event, but sometimes you need some easier offerings to fill out the fare. Everyone loves a shrimp ring, and it’s much easier than pie to prepare. This olive wreath is also becoming a favorite of mine, festive to look at, tasty to eat, and oh so easy to prepare.
Get Advice on Quantity
How many appetizers do you need to feed 60 people? I had a hard time answering that question last year until I found a helpful blog to give me guidance. I can’t locate the exact one that I used, but here’s a helpful guide from Chickabug.
Special Diet Considerations
I knew there would be people at the event who needed to eat diabetic or gluten free foods. I like everyone to be happy and relaxed, so when possible, I like to make foods that everyone can just have. Most of my menu items for everyone were low carb and gluten free. I did make one gluten free flatbread and some of my desserts had sugar (that’s a hard one to avoid), but at least they were small!
Leftovers are the Goal!
I worried more than I should that I would have an embarrassing amount of food leftover. Of course the alternative, running out of food, would have been far worse. There will always be someone who will be happy to put their feet up for a few days and eat fancy leftovers. That someone might even be you if you’ve just hosted a huge event! Err on the side of plenty!
I’m gearing up to do it again this year, and I think I might even be a little bit excited about it!