Family get-togethers are always a wonderful time for the family. It can be done for a wide variety of reasons, from a big celebration of someone graduating from school to simply a Sunday night dinner with a relative. Either way, being with family is always a good bonding time. Besides fun, it also builds self-esteem in children, strengthens the bond of families, develops the positive behavior of the younger ones, helps children and parents reconnect and most importantly, creates happy memories that will last for a long time.
Family events are also a great time to showcase your love for cooking and share it with people that you love and care about. It is not easy especially if you are catering for a large family event. Whether you are just starting out for the first time or you are an experienced caterer these tips will surely help you. Here are 5 of the top cooking tips that you can refer to if you are thinking of catering for a large family event:
Prepare in advance
Prepare everything you need early. Upon knowing the exact time and date of the event, it is best to start planning everything as early as possible. Preparing early also gives you time to have room for adjustments should there be last-minute changes in the menu. As one famous proverb says “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”
Before the event, it is best to prepare a packing list for all the things that you might need. Things to include in your list are the food that you will prepare, the equipment that you will need, your working budget, and miscellaneous supplies that need to be packed such as napkins, toothpicks, salt and, pepper shakers. Preparing the day before the event can save you a lot of time and trouble during the event itself.
Here are some things you can prepare the night before or early in the morning:
- If you are preparing salads you can prepare these early and just keep them covered. However, do not add the dressings or eggs first because these can’t be left out for too long and might spoil
- You can start preparing the fruits and vegetables a day early. For some of the ingredients, you can start peeling them, chopping, and then just store them into your refrigerator.
Marinate meats early as well. This will not only save you time but also will make your dishes more delicious since the longer it is marinated the tastier it becomes.
- Since catering is not just about the food but also providing quality service, you can start cleaning out your cutlery and dishes a day early before everything gets hectic. In addition, you can also set the tables beforehand if the place allows, and prepare spare glasses and utensils for the party.
If you are planning on bringing the food at the event itself and not cook it there, check out these incredible bags. These are insulated bags that can keep your food hot and fresh.
Always side on having plenty of food as opposed to having a shortage
It is better to err on the side of always having a lot of extra room to wiggle in. One of the things that you don’t want to happen in a large family event is for food to run out. Extra leftovers can always be sent home as gifts to your guests or simply stored in your refrigerator for another day.
Prioritize food hygiene no matter who you are catering for
When you prepare food, always make sure that you are sticking to the safety guidelines for handling food.
- In order to avoid cross-contamination, bring a lot of chopping boards and color code them according to what will be prepared on them. For example, a red chopping board for meats, green for vegetables, and blue for fishes. If you don’t have enough chopping boards, just make sure that you clean them properly before chopping another batch of different things on it.
- When storing food in your fridge, always separate raw meat by keeping them on the bottom shelf. In addition to fridge hygiene, label everything with their expiration dates so that you can be sure that they will not go to waste.
- Always clean as you go. A messy working environment can be stressful and is also a hygiene risk.
Be creative when it comes to food presentation
Make your catering service a memorable experience for your family by standing out in food presentation. Since people also eat using their eyes, and not just using the mouth, make sure that the food is visually appetizing to look at. In addition, a lot of people want to take pictures of their food nowadays. Because of this, serving an Instagram worthy dish is set to garner a lot of likes and maybe even get others to contact you for their next event!
Be courteous and nice when serving food
Serving the best food is great but it is not only criteria for an all-out customer service 5-star rating. Even though you might be catering for a family event, always think of them as customers and serve them with a smile.
Presentation, food quality, and ambiance are essential to catering success. But a lot of people also look at the quality of service that you provide. Interact with the guests during the event in order to get feedback on the food that you served. Listen to their comments and acknowledge their criticism. Serve with a smile and your family will surely enjoy the party.
Catering a large family event is a great time to get the whole family together and serve them with great food and provide quality service with a smile. Remember to prepare early in advance, prepare plenty of food, comply with proper food hygiene. When it comes to the food itself, be creative with your presentation. Be courteous and nice as well when serving your food. Give your family a catering service that they will never forget!