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The Big Gig... (long post)

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Catering ideas, critique please

So i am catering a rather large function of 80 to 100 and i wanted to run some ideas past the general public and to get a feel for peoples responses. It will be a crowd of largely older people (but not that old! Just not a bunch of 20yr olds) who are a relaxed and simple type of people (as in simple tastes and pleasures) and a very large contingent of bikers. it will be fingerfood also.
So my ideas are a such, a few stand out fancier dishes to impress and remember and then a good helping of oven baked and deep-fried goodies to help absorb the alcamahol!

So please let me know what you think, if you think it needs a certain dish, something sound yukky, or you think i'm out of my mind!


i plan to buy these (like **** i am making them by hand) so hopefully i will have a few varieties of each type, meat pie, beef and pepper,chix and vegie that kind of thing and same with sausage rolls. i figure for 100 peeps i will need about 350 pieces to keep everyone happy. These will go out at different times, so they will be popular after a few beers.

With these i plan to buy large pizza bases and top them myself.
Ideas include:
Salami and caramelised onion
Spinach, olives and fetta (V)
Ham and roast vegetable
Roast pumpkin and goats cheese (V)
Chorizo, capsicum and rocket

Just crumbed bits of chicken, also preparing to buy them. I'm buying in alot of things and the budget has been allowed for it.

Thai marinated beef diced finely, mixed with coriander and a sweet and spicy dressing in a cucumber cup.
maybe mint in there too (can also be done as a vegie option too)


Chicken on sticks coated in balsamic and Dukkah spice see here
A bit fiddly but they taste fantastic, dukkah is expensive though.


Roast pumpkin and sage in a ball of cheesy risotto crumbed and lightly fried or baked, yum as ****! Also a vegie option.

little boats of dried bread topped with a ceasar salad, obviously bitesize, i think without the anchovy.

Another one i havent decided on...to make them would be very fiddly.

I would like to have all the dips vegetarian if possible, i dont know how many i am going to have but its better to be safe than sorry.
Vegetarian Pate (avacado based)
Baked fetta log
I would also have these being walked around on platters as they go fairly unappealing if they are left on their own

And the pièce de résistance:


Chinese spoons filled with creme brulee and caramelised on top. Not sure on flavour just yet, will have to confer with the bride ;)

Other passing ideas were nori rolls, onion and goats cheese tarts, smoked salmon blinis, wontons with duck pate, and dim sims.

So... hungry yet?
What do you think? Any ideas i missed? any interesting vegie options? Also the budget for this is A$800. And that includes my "wage" I dont think i will make it personally. But it can be my gift to them. I have friends helping with the prep and service and they are doing it purely for the drinks tab at the bar ( i love my mates!)

Thanks in advance for any help or advice given, it is greatly appreciated.

P.s. if the description above seems very basic its because i have crossposted that in an email to non-culinary friends. :)
Help me be fabulous!! Advice wanted on first big gig!
Help me be fabulous!! Advice wanted on first big gig!
post #2 of 5

My two cents....cut your menu by 75% you don't really have to have that extensive a variety.
3.5 peices of one thing is alot when you have 20+ things on the menu.

First thing to do is look at the site and see what equipment is available....that will determine your menu.

Your menu appears to be very labor intensive, you can love your mates and still not be overwhelmed or put your staff through outrageous paces.
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thankyou very much for replying, this is the kind of advice i need and i cant get from my friends. I myself am a ex-chef and i know my limitations and i also have another chef helping too but i cant yet visualise the kind of work i need to do to prepare for this.(ive been out of the kitchen 6 years)
The dips and bits like that i want for fillers as the boy are big drinkers and i was thinking alot of pre-prepared frozen bits. The function is at a club with a functioning kitchen that i can access a good 6 hours before the function. Large oven, large fridge, good bench space. i also have the added benefit of working in a hospitality supply store (cost price staff discount) and they are letting me use their trade card for campbells cash and carry (a good 20% discount there)
With alot of things i would like to do 70:30 meat to vego option as i know there is going to be a few vegies there so that really cuts the number of dishes down a bit (ie pizza, pies, etc) but it really does need some tweaking.
Is there any online software available for pricing items? or a guide i can go by?
The function itself is going to be very casual, the bride is a dear friend and its her second wedding and is first but they are very laid back people. And i have til november! which is a good spell of time.

Sorry for the essay, i have so many things i want to ask and run past people stuff i used to know and that has been forgotten over time :(

thanks for your advice
Tish x
Help me be fabulous!! Advice wanted on first big gig!
Help me be fabulous!! Advice wanted on first big gig!
post #4 of 5
frying can be a bear so unless you've got one leave off the arincini

Talk money. Are you having to pay for staff? other kitchen or waitstaff?
With all the hot stuff you'll be in the kitchen all night long.

dolmas, baba ganoush, caponata, tapenade, chevre, pita chips/fresh pita wedges, tziyki.....all can be made ahead or purchased and are good at room temp.

pizzas, rolls, bites.....sound good just be conscious of the amounts and varieties...you really don't need loads of each.

skewers, easy and cheap.

Thai beef in cuke....tasty but labor intensive and I dare say pretty pricey when your using so many cukes.

quiche, pain to make from scratch there are good ones premade.

How about brie with some fruit topping something or other?
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
post #5 of 5
bikers? .....wedding? ........lots of kid guests?

an issue?
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