We all know hosts that seem to throw a party with apparent ease. However, when it comes to entertaining, effortless usually translates to well planned. Even casual entertaining requires considerable forethought. We thought these tips for setting a buffet table from the LA Times were great for summer entertaining.
1. Organize the food layout, with a definite "beginning" and "ending." Set the plates, napkins and silverware/plasticware at one end of the table near the food, so guests know where to line up. This will keep the guests from rushing the food like an NFL defensive line.
2. Consider plate size. Guests tend to fill up whatever size plate they have, be it small or large. Go with a smaller plate (8 to 9 inches) so guests don't overfill and waste food. They can always go back for seconds.
3. Organize all of the less-expensive/greater-quantity foods at the "beginning" of the buffet, like salads and starches (rolls, rice, potatoes, etc). Save the big ticket and expensive items for the very end of the buffet (tri-tips, ribs, chicken and fish) so guests have less room on their plates and are less likely to overfill.
Of course, we are all about the aesthetics! Here are some great serving pieces that will set the stage for a beautiful meal.
Do you have any clever tips for setting the buffet table? Leave a comment and let us know.