Post # 1
I’m considering not using a caterer and trying to find local people who have done large functions on a grill (My cousin has said he would be in charge of the grill and has worked on fundraisers for more than 200 people before). We would probably do chicken and steak.
We’re also thinking of having a mashed potato bar, I’m thinking it could easily be made a day ahead and then reheated. Add in a couple salads and some other vegetable and that would probably be it.
For apps we may buy pre-made frozen things and have someone cook them just before the cocktail hour starts and throughout. My sister has some friends around (26y/o) who would probably help, they’ve waitressed in the past.
Obviously I’m not looking for anything super fancy, but we do want it to feel like a nice meal rather than an every day family bbq.
Has anyone done this (or will be)? How did it work? Anything else I should think of?
Post # 3
Following this because we are considering “self-catering” too!
Post # 4
@Fanciful: Have you thought about what you may end up doing?
I just can’t wrap my head around spending $10 on food. We’re having an open bar, so hopefully anything that isn’t perfect about the food will be equaled out by that!
Post # 5
one great idea for apps (that i just saw as a wedding guest) were charcuterie and cheese platters. there were large platters with sliced proscuitto, marinated artichoke hearts, olives, cherry tomatoes, marinated red peppers etc. there were pita slices and baguette portions and you could decide whatever you wanted 🙂
there were also platters with cheese, berries, crackers, cheese straws and a pesto dip etc.
neither of these platters need to be cooked, and the ingredients can be bought ahead, from a few days, to weeks – if there was a big sale on marinated artichokes and peppers for instance, you could stock up months before, because they save.
they didn’t need to be seriously chilled or heated, so it was very easy to just put them out and let people graze.
Post # 6
How much money would you be saving? Would your sister’s friends really help for free?
Sounds like it will be nice if it works out. Just make sure you can rely on people and it will be cost effective.
Post # 7
@CoCoCourtney: we just got a quote from the only caterer that has actually called us back, and it was $96/person for apps, buffet dinner, non-alcoholic drinks, china and flatware rentals, and staffing. Yeah…. no. That’s our entire wedding. Lol.
We have flirted with two ideas. The first is going Italian style – lasagna or chicken parm, a penne pasta bar, garlic bread, a baked tomato/zucchini vegetable medley, and salad. That was my moms idea. My fiancé thinks Italian food is cheap(???). His idea is baked and seasoned chicken or lage prime rib rounds, a mashed potato bar, corn and another veggie, and salad.
We would still hire a staff to man the buffet. Appetizers would be, as you said, frozen things from Sam’s Club. Think mini quiche, cheese and crackers, maybe fruit.
Post # 8
@Bubbles42: I guess now would be a good time to sit and try to figure out what the actual food costs would be.
We would still pay my sisters friends (who whoever helped out) but I’m hoping it would be like $100/person or less. I guess I also need to figure out how many people we would need.