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Artichoke

Early September Wedding, what to Serve?

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I am making a wedding along with my fiancee here in Manhattan on September 10th. It will be a casual affair, no black tie, held in a loft, 120 people, with a short ceremony held at 4:00 PM. Our purpose is really to make a fun dinner party for our friends and family to relax, eat, drink well and dance.

The food is of utmost importance to me, so I have been interviewing quality caterers who will work with me to create what I want. The question is, what do I want?

If I think about what I like, it is long, slow cooked, braised dishes, short ribs, lamb shanks, osso bucco (plus, in deference to the caterer, these items lend themselves to being cooked ahead of time), yet is it too early to serve something like that? Personally, I do not have a seasonality to my eating, cassoulet in July? Sure, bring it on. However I recognize that there are 119 other people attending this affair.

I was thinking of doing a Moroccan theme, different tagines, couscous, etc., although I wonder if that has broad enough appeal.

Any suggestions?

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Early September is a great time for produce and seafood. I'd be tempted to go with dishes that use the abundance of great tomatoes, peppers, and other late summer veggies. Also, that's the teeth of shrimp season in the Carolinas, you could get some fantastic shrimp from there, also good time for fresh fish and lobster. Those ingredients could be worked into a Moroccan theme, I think, although Southwest comes to mind also.

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Something along those lines but easier for service might be sauebratten with tradtional sides of red cabbage potato pancake and mabey some dilled baby carrots you are getting a very pretty plate. This could also drift towards fall festival stuff like a chicken sausage/puff pastry app and other Oktoberfesty foods....

tracey


The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

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I'm catering my wedding reception--This Saturday! It's a similar size, and similar affair. I'm serving roast pork loin and jambalaya. The vegetarians and other "special diets" are having a mushroom stroganoff--yes, that's changed from the smoked salmon sandwiches.

Hopefully I can start cooking tomorrow.


I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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Boiled ham feeds a crowd (assuming that keeping kosher is not an issue) and holds well. Jazzing it up is also easy. It's traditional big holiday food for a reason *g*.

Braised dishes also work very well. There, the sky's the limit IMO. If keeping kosher *is* an issue, Moroccan tagines, saurbraten, and many many many other braised dishes will be kosher safe or can be made kosher safe.

The only thing I'd worry about with a menu focusing on braised dishes is that early September has lots of yummy fresh produce that cries out to be used :). It's the tail end of peak tomatoes, most of the hard root veggies are just coming into season, you'll have loads of lovely squashes, a lot of lettuces will be just lovely, cabbage is coming into season, broccoli is good, brussel sprouts are coming into season... The easy solution is to include a couple vegetarian dishes, braised or not :).

Emily

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Caterers make Moroccan dishes for weddings here in Israel. Of course, we have large Moroccan community here.

I don't see a problem in having a Moroccan themed wedding. You can serve moroccan salads, vegetable, chicken and meat tagines and couscous.

You could also have mini bistiyaas as an appetizer.

We had dates stuffed with lamb for an appetizer. They were delicious.

I would suggest buying Paula Wolfert's Couscous and Other Good Food from Morocco cookbook.


Edited by Swisskaese (log)

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Corn Chowder is really speaking to me for this occasion... I think it would make a great pairing with some of your braised dishes, and the corn should be really good around that time.


"Many people believe the names of In 'n Out and Steak 'n Shake perfectly describe the contrast in bedroom techniques between the coast and the heartland." ~Roger Ebert

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At an early September outdoor evening wedding in Connecticut we attended a few years ago, the first course was gazpacho. Main course was a pairing of orange roughy with lamb chops. The food was lovely and forgiving as far as holding temps. And congrats to you and (separately) jsolomon!


Bridget Avila

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Bavila, thank you. The wedding and the reception were a tremendous success!

And, the gazpacho idea is spectacular. I would love to be at a wedding or reception where a good, seasonal gazpacho was served. Corn chowder is also a wonderful plan, especially if you know a good caterer who will make it when the corn is at its peak and then freeze it to hold for your wedding.

Here is my general experience: soups/stews at receptions generally seem to taste the best of all the meals I have had at receptions. They always seem to hold better, and are just enough unique (in Nebraska, anyway) that everyone is that much more appreciative.

Good luck, and congratulations!


I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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So, Artichoke, how did it go? Do we get pics? Or are you too busy honeymooning?


Bridget Avila

My Blog

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