Like anything else, there are trends in food, certain menu items go in and out of fashion.
Back in the Seventies, prawn cocktail, coq au vin and black forest gateau were certainly having a moment. If you’d served them up at your wedding you’d have been considered to really have your finger on the pulse of culinary fashion.
Serve them now and you’d be considered retro, apart from the fact that serving shellfish at a wedding is a real no-no, due to allergies.
Of course, the first thing to consider when you’re planning your wedding food is who is coming along.
You’ll be inviting guests who don’t eat certain foods due to health or religious reasons and of course you want them to feel comfortable about what’s on offer.
So really, the most important wedding food trend going on right now is offering food that’s accessible to all.
Three course sit-down meal or buffet style?
One way of catering (literally) for all tastes is to have mini menus on the table, offering say three different choices of food for main courses.
People are choosing a large crudité platter of freshly cut vegetables accompanied by some delicious dips. Or in summer you could have shot glasses filled with gazpacho soup ‘sips’ to get the taste buds interested.
So for a main course you could have a fish dish, a vegetarian dish and a meat dish. Serve vegetables and potatoes/rice separately so people can pick and choose as they wish.
For desserts a fresh fruit platter is acceptable to all and you could have local cheeses and an ice cream van.
Small bowls of food like this can be served at the table if you want to have a more formal sit down meal rather than a buffet.
Another trend we’re hearing a lot more about is ditching the round tables at a wedding and opting for fewer, long tables. Waiting staff place the food on the tables and guests serve themselves ‘family style’. This makes for a lot less formality and is a great way to break the ice between guests and start conversations.
If you are going for the buffet option, then you have plenty of choices.
You could go for the street food option. Instead of having formal buffet tables laid up, have four or five different cuisines offering street food. These could be everything from Vietnamese noodle bars through to Middle Eastern falafel, curries and fish and chips.
Many different companies are available who will serve this type of cuisine from a van or set up on tables within your venue.
Another thing to think about is offering miniature food bits. You could have mini jacket potatoes with delicious fillings, chip sized tacos or mini pasta spoons.
Talk to your caterer about how dishes can be shrunk down. People love grazing at weddings and mini food fits this trend perfectly.
The rule for getting the best food available is always to choose what’s in season and preferably what’s local. So if you’re marrying in summer, opt for wonderful salads, raspberries, strawberries. In autumn, investigate the flavours of root vegetables like parsnips and squash. In spring, fresh lamb is in season.
Another very on-trend way of entertaining your guests is to offer a signature cocktail. Have the cocktail made up in a large glass demi-john and allow guests to serve themselves. It’s also a good idea to have a non-alcoholic cocktail available too.
After an evening on the dance floor, your guests could start to feel a little peckish as the evening wears on.
You could have a burger bar set up, with build-yourself burgers and don’t forget to have some vegetarian burgers too. Also have some food for grazing on.
Tea, coffee and cake on the side are always welcome.