I had the pleasure of catering a party for my friends’ daugher who recently graduated from nursing school. The experience was great from start to finish. I realize this is a rarity, but there were no “gradzilla” moments, no last minute menu changes, no hard to find ingredients, no delays or snags of any kind. I am still thanking God for this amazing grace!
The process started with the invitations. The grad had a favorite color scheme and wanted something unique. Unable to find just the right thing, I decided to make a sample invite and see if she liked it – and boy did she – so I went quickly into production mode and got them out on time!
The menu was set and I began work, with the help of a very experienced and dedicated sous chef, my mom! I couldn’t have done it without her help – she kept the sink free of dishes and reminded me to take an occasional break!
We worked for the entire week before the party making what we could ahead of time and constantly reworking the timeline to ensure that everything went off without a hitch the day of the party. The party was on a Saturday; so I created a daily calendar (beginning the Monday before) of all the tasks that had to be accomplished – not just making food, but ensuring we had selected the proper serving platters, purchasing flowers/herbs for the buffet, making the iced teas, ironing tablecloths (a quick rant – please, please iron the tablecloth and napkins if you are using linens – don’t set a table that looks like someone slept on it overnight!!!), etc.
The day of the party we had a few last-minute details to attend to in the morning. We had a hearty breakfast and then went to set up. Below are a few photos of the buffet and a list of what was on the menu – those of you with a keen eye will notice that the menu item cards on the buffet match the invitations. Please visit my Photo Gallery for all the beautiful photos of the event, which were taken by the grad, Brianna Wilbur. In addition to being a new nurse, Bri is also a wonderfully talented photographer. Please visit her blog to see more of her work.
Crudite Platter (Served with Caramelied Onion Dip)
Almond Joy Cupcakes
The full menu included:
- Southern Sweet Tea & Herbal Iced Tea
- Crudite Platter w/ Caramelized Onion Dip
- Marinated Cheese w/ Crackers
- Spinach Balls
- Meatball Duo – Chicken Wing Meatballs & Spicy Sesame Meatballs
- Sundried Tomato & Smoked Cheddar in Phyllo
- Artichoke, Bacon & Goat Cheese Tart
- Fruit Skewers w/ Brown Sugar Sour Cream Dip
- Amond Joy Cupcakes & Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Cinnamon Icing
What a pleasure it was for me to cater this party. It allowed me to share my love of cooking and entertaining with others and to spend time – lots of time – in the kitchen with my mom. What could be better than that?