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February 2014 Wedding

Our next February Wedding to cater came along soon after, Tom & Charlotte married on the 21st with the reception held at Alderley edge cricket & hockey club. The reception was held in a marquee at the club where I believe Tom is a member and captain of the cricket team.

It was a cold but bright sunny day, the temperature poses no problem if you have plenty of heating within the tent in which they did so don’t be put off by the thought of a tent for your wedding reception in February. 

The happy couple opted for a Two course Wedding breakfast with a light Smoked Salmon mousse to start things off, served with warmed ciabatta toast along with a cucumber & dill salad mixed with lemon zest. 

Wedding breakfast starter course

Smoked salmon mousse, served with warmed ciabatta toast along with a cucumber & dill salad

The main course soon followed, the groom in particular wanted a hearty, filling main course and opted for a Steak N Ale pie made using our own blend of braised steak and Bombardier fine ale. Served with seasoned mash potato & roasted root winter vegetables. There was an alternative main course served up for a number of non-meat eating guests, pan fried Seabass laid across a bed of crushed new potatoes with a butter sauce.

For dessert, the couple wanted to make use of the wedding cake which is often discarded at weddings and rarely eaten. They provided an array of cupcakes creating the effect of a tiered wedding cake. We were asked if we could use the cakes as dessert, no problem, we dressed each cake with a fruit whipped through the cream, fresh mint and droplets of passion fruit coulis.

Wedding cup cake

Wedding “cup” cake

We weren’t finished yet, we had to feed the guests late at night and as the wedding had been designed around a budget then we were tasked with providing catering for less than £3 pp, simple, slow cooked pork shoulder with home made cider stuffing with apple puree along side pulled lamb legs soaked in a rosemary & red berry jus (taken from a lamb dinner created 3 days before, yum!) all served on soft bread rolls with loads of crackling, no complaints there i can assure you.

Our work was then done for the day, we headed home to leave the happy couple to party late on…..

Courtesy of Dave Whitehurst

 

                   

 

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Libby & Aidens Wedding

Now that the 2014 Wedding season is slowing it allows me a little more time in the office. I plan to pick things up with the blog where we left off and post information and photos from some of the Weddings we catered for throughout 2014.

Going back to February this year, Libby & Aiden were married in the historic town of Stratford upon Avon. They hired the town hall for their reception which was great, perfect town centre location, ample hotels within walking distance and a kitchen for us the caterers to use. The couple live in London but I believe the bride in particular grew up in Warwickshire, and wanted to have her wedding reception back home in the town.

They arrived in style click here to see the wedding car, WOW.

110 guests were invited to share in the celebrations with the menu in particular taking on that sharing, social feel with mezze platters arranged as the starter course.

We served the starter of Anti-pasti designed on sharing platters made up of- Artichoke hearts & anchovies, cured meat selection of prosciutto, parma ham & salamis, stuffed green & sliced black olives, sun-dried tomatoes with roasted peppers. A smaller cheese board top accompany of goats cheese, mozzarella & grated parmesan served up with warm baskets of sliced ciabatta, brown Italian & flat-breads finished off with balsamic & olive oil dipping pots, yum.

Anti-pasti sharing board #wedding

Just a point to mention, when considering this style of service do ensure the dining tables are either large enough or not over crowded with flowers, decorations……. serving food in this way requires plenty of space.

The main course swiftly followed, again with the emphasis on sharing, passing food around the happy couple asked for  pie ‘n’ mash, not sure if it was a London thing or bias but we duly obliged. Now, they wanted a choice, which was a little tricky as there were only 8 guests on each table, we had to make smaller pies just big enough to provide four portions, x 2 pies per table gave the 8 guests a choice of either Chicken, ham & Leek or Steak ‘n’ Ale (the steak pie was incredible) pie. We included a vegetarian option and served individual ones to the relevant guests, 4 in total if memory serves.

All family served up with bowls of mash potato and vegetables to each table.

Now the dessert course took on a slightly different manner, each guest or group of guests were asked to bring a cake, they wanted to create a buffet table of sweets (unfortunately we didn’t get a photo of this,) In addition to this we were asked to provide a further selection of Sticky toffee pudding (apparently the grooms fave), Lemon tart, Strawberry cheesecake, and a mountain of profiteroles, we would also serve up the wedding cake with cream & fruit compote. It is staggering how many wedding cakes go to waste, what a great idea to cut it up and serve it alongside the dessert.

Late into the evening we kept the guests going with cheese boards & biscuits while they partied the night way.

Cheese boards with onion chutney, grape and water biscuits

Cheese boards with onion chutney, grape and water biscuits

Congratulations to you both and best wishes for your future together.

Dave and Team at Catered-Events & Bars 

This blog is written independently to showcase a few of the weddings we cater for. We are established wedding and event caterers and offer a totally flexible approach to catering, whether a corporate event, a wedding or private party.

 

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Sample #Barbecue menus for summer 2014

Sample #Barbecue menus for summer 2014. google+

 

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Silver service…………is it old hat?

If opting for the formal three course wedding breakfast and plan to serve your guests at tables, think about the variations on this.

Silver service is a traditional method of serving guests over the shoulder although we don’t see it much these days, in fact I can’t remember the last wedding or corporate dinner we did when a client requested this style of service. Saying that we did a three course meal for a remembrance day poppy event for the British legion one year, the average age of the guests was at least 70 so needless to say they opted for silver service.

In my opinion its bit old hat now,  its slow, tedious and cumbersome, but hey, if the client pays ,the client can dictate the way in which there guests are served. Although some guests still enjoy the kudos of being served personally by a waiter.

Wedding Dessert

Trio of Mini desserts

In recent times see most meals being served plated, pretty much the way we are served today in the majority of hotels, restaurants even foody pubs. The waiter comes oer and delivers the dish in its entirety, maybe with the addition of family served vegetables.  

more to follow……………..www.callthecaterers.co.uk 

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Reception drinks to serve with your canapes…..

Wedding reception drinks served with your canapés, subject to the time of year think about what drinks to serve to your guests on their arrival. Summer fruit pimms is very popular made with fresh strawberries & cucumber that day, Champagne is a traditional drink to offer guests and maybe mix a few with cassis or serve a rose Champagne. Consider serving a Cava instead of Champagne, similar drink, not as dry and it can be a 3rd of the price per bottle.

Pre-mixed summer cocktails can really get the party going early, Mojito, Strawberry or Rum daiquir……to name a few

A winter wedding, i know its a little christmassy but you can’t beat the smell of mulled wine simmering away with fresh nutmeg & cinnamon.

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Just another money saving tip if you plan to provide your own drinks, check with your caterer first as most will charge you a corkage fee, (we don’t) it’s your choice I know but when you consider a glass of Champagne will cost you around £3.50 for a mid-range label, compare that to a Cava at around £2.00 per glass (cost prices), multiply that by your 120 guests at 2 glasses each then you could save £360 just on your reception drinks!

Soft drinks for the drivers or the non drinkers, fruit punch offers something different and a recipe we came across years ago and continue to use it to this day is, Orange & Pineapple juice, Ginger ale, topped up with Lemonade served with ice n lemon always a refreshing choice. You could consider providing a cup of tea, maybe not directly at the drinks reception but out of the way from the catering tent, there will always be an auntie who after 2 hours on her feet will beg, steal and borrow to get a brew.

If you want to save some money for the honeymoon and assuming you are having a bar within your marquee, open it early and let your guests help themselves!

More to follow…………..or email the chef@callthecaterers.co.uk or visit us at http://www.callthecaterers.co.uk for more info…….

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Guests arrive………..

Ok we all have budgets to work too but a drinks reception will plug that gap between guests arriving and being seated for dinner, serving canapés will offer a taster of what’s to come, again talk to your caterer to establish costs.

Canapés are designed to stimulate the taste buds not satisfy the hunger, we can often discount our canapé menu if providing the main wedding meal as we are already on site and some of the costs (staff) to  provide canapés have  already been met.

Canapés aren’t cheap, by their very nature they are hand crafted tiny morsels of several foods, constructed to appease the eye first and taste buds second, and well that’s my opinion. Canapés on a budget can be done as long as you select the right caterer; there are cheaper alternatives that won’t break the bank.

* cook a lasagne the day into a 3-4cm deep tray, the next day square pastry cut small 2cm square portions, heat gently and serve as mini lasagne, cheap, cheerful fed your guests….

* trim Asparagus tips to about 8-10 long, serve blanched next to a small glass of warm hollandaise but guests to dip into…………that will cost you about 15p a portion

Alternatively try a bowl food menu, bowl food offers an alternative to canapés where something a little more substantial is required with limited or no seating. Ideal if eating late with a few hours before the reception meal, bowl food is by its very name small quantities of fine food served in small rice bowls, it will cost more per unit but will offer more in terms of quantity.

More to follow……………….

www.callthecaterers.co.uk

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Canapes and drinks reception………

Think though your timings for the day; the Wedding ceremony is at 1pm and you plan to eat at 5pm, what are you going to do for those 4 hours in between? Your ceremony may take an hour, yes your photographer will take maybe another hour to get the numerous shots they want to create the best ones for your album but even the most conscientious photographers will do well to stay over 2 hrs. They may have another wedding that day and will need to go but I do know the good photographers will expect to be hired for the whole day and capture the whole wedding day right up the first dance.

Marquee Wedding Reception

This way to the Wedding party

Consider adding a drinks and canapé reception to your plans, when your guests arrive at the venue they will expect to be greeted with a welcome drink and something to nibble on. Drinks can range from Summer fruit pimms to more traditional champagne, TIP 1-if saving the pennies for the honeymoon then consider Cava or Prosecco as a cheaper alternative as I’m sure your guests wouldn’t notice or even care.

Canapés served with the welcome drinks will eat into the budget; they are expensive for caterers to produce and can often range from £4-£10 per person dependent on the final choice as well as the number of canapés you serve.

Wedding Canapes

Quails egg & spiced leek tart canape, one of many canapes served on arrival

TIP 2-Consider simple nuts, nibbles, pretzels as a cost saving option or ask your caterer to make rounds of sandwiches and cut them into fingers, you can now call it an “afternoon tea” style reception.

The time between arriving at the venue and being seated for dinner will determine how many canapés and drinks per guest you need to allow. Some guests may have travelled far and wide and will need topping up if there is a while before dinner.

TIP 3- open the bar early and allow guests to buy themselves a second or third drink if they prefer.

More to follow……………………

www.callthecaterers.co.uk

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Selecting the Wedding menu………..

Selecting the right menu for your wedding or event, but first decide the style of the #catering you require, formal or informal? A three course Wedding breakfast serving your guests at their table or a meal served as a buffet ?

If you’re working to a budget a buffet style service will save you some money versus the plated meal option, less waiting staff will be required but the buffet will also offer you more choice on the menu without eating into your honeymoon fund!

Choc Torte, Strawberry pavlova, Raspbery & cider sorbet shot

Assiette of Dessert- Mini chocolate torte/Strawberry pavlova/Raspberry & Cider sorbet shot

Don’t think of a “buffet” as a selection of curled up sandwiches with lifeless fillings (well that does depend on the caterer you choose!), many dishes you see from various menus can be adapted and served as a buffet. Cooking a barbecue menu as seen an increase in popularity over the last few years, again if done properly it can offer some very exciting combinations not normally seen at a traditional wedding.

On a hot summer’s day, why keep your guests cooped up in a warm marquee open up the marquee and allow the smells of freshly cooked barbecue food to fill the tent, cooking outdoors will inspire the party mood feel to any wedding.

Some caterers publish set menus whereas others allow you the flexibility to create your own, think about the menu choice and discuss the options available. Multiple choice courses or menus will cost more than one set menu as usually more equipment and staff may be required. All caterers should offer a vegetarian option and also take the dietary requirements of your guests seriously.

If you establish the menu before you send out your invitations you could firstly, advise your guests of the intended menu and secondly invite your guests with any dietary needs to make you aware, in my experience any guests with any special dietary requirements will be the first to point it out.

More to follow……………. OR chef@callthecaterers.co.uk if you simply can’t wait

www.callthecaterers.co.uk

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Another testimonial from the Summer #Wedding season

I just wanted to drop you an email before we go on our honeymoon to say how thrilled we were with your services on Saturday. We had so many comments from our guests of how excellent the quality of the food was, and the flavours of the dishes were great. The service we received from the waiting on and bar staff was great as well, they were really helpful and the speed of which they turned out the food was impressive.

On behalf of me and Charles we just wanted to say thank you, we have been told by many of our guests it was the best wedding they have ever been to which is a lovely compliment, and we feel some of that credit goes to you and your team.

The service before the day was also excellent, It really helped put our minds at ease having it all so well organised and the communication we received gave us added confidence that you would deliver well on the day.

I will be sure to recommend you to anyone in the future, as im sure Alex Griffiths will be too!

All the best, Annika & Charlie

www.callthecaterers.co.uk 

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Thanks for the Testimonial…………….

Sorry we have been so slow in getting this to you. I thought we might be able to write in straight to the website but couldn’t find a way to do this, so we’ve just written it below instead.

” We are so glad we picked ‘Catered-Events‘ for our country wedding, they went above and beyond what we had asked, in order to help our day run smoothly. Many people have commented that the food was excellent and we couldn’t have asked for more on taste, quality and value for money. They were very efficient, friendly and helpful before and during the big day, and we would recommend them to anyone wanting great food and good service.”

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Thanks once again and good luck in the future.

Simon & Meex

c/o www.callthecaterers.co.uk

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