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Jan 19, 2012 04:11 PM

Self Cater Wedding Menu

Due to multiple factors, my fiance and I are going to have to have a self catered afternoon wedding for 120. We have a hall booked that has a commercial kitchen, but we are not able to prepare the food there - only serve it. Because it is self catered, we are going to have a cold buffet. I have read the posts regarding cold buffets, and would have loved to do hot, but it truly isn't a possibility here. The wedding is an afternoon in June, with the reception from 2:30 to 5:30, and our families are on board with the type of reception we are planning. While the moms, my fiance and I are doing the cooking, we do have other help lined up to serve. I would love some critique on the menu we are planning:

Vegetable tray with tzatziki dip, snow peas, grape tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, summer squash, carrots, green peppers, cauliflower, broccoli.
Fruit tray or fruit salad
Cantaloupe wrapped with prosciutto
Deviled Eggs (must have family favorite)
Baked Ham with a maple mustard glaze on the side, precooked and sliced on trays
Baked Turkey with a cranberry orange compote on the side, precooked and sliced on trays
Finger rolls and butter
Some sort of starchy salad, not mayonnaise based. Thinking of a rice confetti salad or something like that. Families are not adventurous eaters, so a wheat berry salad, while I would love it, would be untouched.
Salmon mousse served with cucumber rounds, my grandmothers recipe
Cheese tray - Vermont cheddar, brie, smoked gouda, bleu, boursin, gruyere, with crackers and grapes
Hummus and pitas
Grilled antipasto salad (got the recipe from Chow, but closed the page before I remembered to bookmark it)

Lemonade and Iced Tea bar with raspberry, lemon, mint and mango simple syrups

Dessert table:
wedding cake is vanilla with raspberry filling
grooms cake is chocolate with chocolate filling
Chocolate chip cookies
PB cookie pies (pb dough in a mini muffin tin, mini reeses cup pressed in at the end)
Sugar cookies
Cocoa crinkles
raspberry and lemon bars
oatmeal scotchies

We are not providing liquor except for a champagne toast. The venue is a hall with a bar in a separate room on the same floor - if anyone wants liquor, they are free to go to the bar and bring it back into the reception room. Essentially, I'm not providing, but I can't stop anyone from drinking if they want to pay for it. Not my ideal situation, I would prefer to host a beer and wine only bar, but it's not available on the budget.

Thanks so much for any help you can give!

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  1. Sounds like a daunting task ahead, I wish you well. You could probably cut out a couple of dishes and no one would go hungry. The desserts alone are way over. Most people will only want a piece of cake and that will be to take home. I hope more people step up and offer to help.

    1. Looks great, but thats a lot of cookies. (and this is coming from someone who makes 15 kind of cookies for christmas) I always put at an excess of desserts, and people usually just want a taste of something sweet

      3 Replies
      1. re: sunangelmb

        Unless you are in the Pittsburgh area where cookies are expected tradition, then I agree with limiting them.

        1. re: melpy

          But doesn't that tradition include contributions from extended family? Lots of cookies, but the bride is expected to provide all of them.

          1. re: mpjmph

            Only attended weddings as such never helped plan so unsure.

      2. I'd cut down on the cookies/desserts and maybe add a few appetizers or and antipasto platter. By the end of the ordeal, most people just want a bite or two or something sweet and then they are done.

        1. Sorry, forgot to add, the reason for so many cookies is that they are the favors as well - we are having bags for people to choose some to take home.

          2 Replies
          1. re: pinkrose

            Lovely menu. Sounds like it will be pleasing.

            I agree with opinions above, lots of lovely sweets, but lots of work. Since you're using those as favors (nice touch!), consider serving only three to four varieties, and have maybe three new ones to choose as favors. Or maybe 6 flavors total, and pre-assorted bags for take-home, no choice involved.

            Also, and I speak as a concerned 'auntie', please get some aunties, sisters, cousins, and cookish male relatives enlisted for prep, cooking, setup, and buffet supervision, now, lol. You've chosen a lot of dishes that can be safely delegated to family, please do consider how you (and hubby, and mom and mom) want to be spending your wedding day. :)

            1. re: DuchessNukem

              I agree with DuchessNuken - lots of aunties and sisters would be happy to help! I know you wedding is over and I will continue to read to see how everything turned out! One of our friend's daughters did cookies as a favor, but packaged two of them in small glassine bags tied with ribbon and had them at each place setting. Then that would cut back on the amount of cookies/desserts that you are offering at a table for people to help themselves.

          2. Skip the some kind of starchy salad and ixnay about half of the cookies. You could maybe even skip the hummus/pita. I would skip the flavored syrups and just serve lemonade and the tea sweet or un, and provide lemon wedges and mint leaves.

            Basically, you just have too much stuff here. Too much stuff will be a nightmare to coordinate and serve, and 120 isn't really that many people!