Elegant Winter Dinner

For one of our events in December we decided to play off the colors of the season.
They had a wonderful dining table and with our decorations the setting was very glamorous.

 Lots of silver, crystal, white and glitter to make this dinner an elegant feast.

 silver beads, mirrored plates, and crystal beads

 Elegant white, iridescent, and silver Christmas tree bulbs were perfect

 And finally flickering candlelight from tea lights and votives 
was the perfect finishing touch

To welcome the guests we provided them with our classic Blood Orange Pomtini

 For our Amuse Bouche we had Green Apple and Wasabi sorbet garnished with green apple bits


  

For one of our appetizers we served a warm Pork Crostini: seasoned pork, sage cream, sauteed onions on top of an herbed crostini and garnished with a fried sage leaf
 
 Hard at work assembling the pork crostinis
 Our salad had pears, blackberries, walnuts, and handmade
Bleu cheese dressing, stacked vertically

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Sometimes, it’s the presentation that puts a dish over the top.
Keeping busy at the stove!


 Our main course was a dish native to Argentina. Matambre is a rolled flank steak with proscuitto, spinach, bread crumbs and seasonings.
Here, we accompanied it with a serving of mashed potatoes and shelled edamame.


Menu Options: Winter Banquet

Below is an example of a banquet menu I created for a classic elegant comfort food.

  • Marinated and roasted to perfection, beef tri-tip steak served with a balsamic glaze.

  • Sea salt baked potatoes with sour cream/Boursin cheese mixture and chive garnish.

  • Green bean bundles tied with scallions and marinated in butter.

  • Fluffy white dinner rolls and seasoned foccacia bread.

  • Crisp green salad with mango, feta, roasted walnuts, and sweet cardamom dressing.

  • Handmade pear frangipan galette: pear and sweet almond filling in a rustic tart shell, topped with a shiny glaze, coarse sugar and roasted almonds. Served with house-made vanilla bean ice cream. 
Again, this was another event that went great! We really try to focus on the flavors and what main dish pairs well with sides, salads and desserts.  The steak was to-die-for! Everyone loved the pear galette too. 

Bread: Foccacia

Our home-made foccacia bread receipe is the perfect combination of crusty parmesean and savory bread. We use freshly-sprinkeled herbs rounded out by a hint of onions and garlic. 
We bake it till it has a golden crispy crust, and yet the inside is oh so soft. 

Even though its italian in origin, it pairs well with so many different entrees. 

Other flavor combinations: roasted garlic + bleu cheese (great with a flank steak), kalamatta olives + thyme (great for greek inspired meals),  sauteed red onions + fresh rosemary (for traditional french cuisine), sun-dried tomato + asiago cheese (italian).

Tablescapes

One thing I love about catering and event design is the decorating, it can really bring the entire theme of the menu together beautifully! I do love a great tabletop with beautiful dishes and pretty centerpieces.  We at Savory Event Catering love to go all out for our buffet tables.

Tis the season for a great holiday or New Years’ Eve Party so I thought I would show you a little glimpse into what goes into planning the BEST buffet set-up for your event.

This particular one is a private corporate holiday party. Our very discerning client has high-end taste and wants the menu to be the forefront of the event. We love when we get to work with foodies just like us!
There’s no need for elaborate or tacky knicknaks, cluttering the table, it would distract too much from the menu.

  • We’re going for a clean-line streamlined modern look.
  • All white china and crystal.
  • All the servingware will be void of color, to really make the food POP!
  • We’re using some great fresh ingredients, and food presentation will be paramount.
  • The motif we’re following is “Christmas in New York”

Below are inspiration photos, or you can see the Pinterest Board here.

White Garlands, photo from flickr
Group white, silver, gold ornaments together, or in apothecary jars. Photo from Crate & Barrel
Beautiful tablescape styled by Couture Events styling, Scott Lawrence Photography. Found via Style Me Pretty. I love the glitter accents!
Louis Ghost Chairs by Phillipe Stark (these are a fantasy wish list, but do add a cool element!) Use white florals, crystal elements, lighting is key! Couture Events styling, Scott Lawrence Photography. Found via Style Me Pretty.
However, for our table we’re using this beautiful evergreen emerald green regal green kelly green tablecloths in the most beaufiul woven silk fabric. So much better than the bottom tier polyester linens! Photo from Orange Girl Photographs.
Above, Black white and Red Winter Tahoe wedding by Scott Corridan. Interesting fact, I (Jessica) met him when I was at University in 2006. He is really an inspiring event designer and really opened up my eyes to what an interior design background can lead. If you’re trained in design, it can translate to so many different industries. Sorry for the tangent! Back to the tablescape, what I love is the patterned linens, and again what I’m trying to show is that all the tableware, plates, servingware are simple white to not distract from the food. Photography by Viera Photographics  Found via Style Me Pretty.
White Pinecones as a design element. Love how it sparkles! Photo found here.
Above: White Christmans theme (2008) by the white company. Found via Apartment Therapy
Above, holiday party from Nate Turner originally featured in Domino Magazine 2007 (R.I.P.). Even though the great magazine is no longer in circulation, thank goodness for the wonders of the internet! found via Hostess with the Mostest. Love the tree decorated with divinity candy. Also love the egg nog with floating meringues. We have the BEST egg nog recipe (without the eggs!) I will post later this week for a fun holiday beverage!
HGTV did a holiday special; this is Brook Burke’s home. Generally I thought it was way too over-the-top, but I did like this dessert table with all-white desserts and silver ornament accents.
Fill apothecary jars with white color food items: marshmallows, popcorn, sugar cubes, meringues, even rice would add a fun element! From HGTV. The one thing we’re changing is that instead of white table linens, we’re using the most beautiful evergreen emerald green for a high contrast. Its a nice way to bring in some of the more traditional Christmas colors too.

Kale Orange Pomegranate Cranberry Salad

Hello Wild Chives Readers!
Jessica here, Lou’s oldest daughter.
Here at Savory Event Catering we value family and my mom has definitely passed the culinary bug to us too! She’s definitely the professional and I am still learning from her wealth of knowledge. My sisters and I will also be contributors, showing what cool things my mom has taught us. As a vegetarian, I focus on healthy eating… I am known as the Salad Guru in our family!
Above, photo of us. Jessica, Mom, Haley, Mckell. November 2010.
Below is a delicious salad I made to complement a Thanksgiving meal. I love this because it is SWEET. I definitely have a sweet tooth (proof that being vegetarian not always = healthy). But I think this is a healthy way to satisfy sweet cravings with seasonal winter fruit.
Thank goodness for citrus fruits in winter. This salad also has Kale, which is one of the most vitamin rich leafy greens you can eat! 

Kale is a closer cousin to Broccoli than lettuce and I think it adds a great texture to the salad. A great source of Vitamin K, Vitamin C, and Calcium (especially important for my Vegan friends & lactose intolerant friends who don’t consume dairy)

Pomegranates are also in season around Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Pomegranates are rich in anti-oxidants and have been considered a health food for centuries. Some may be intimidated on how to cut them, but continue reading and I will show you how to eat a pomegranate.

Oranges are a great addition too. These are clementines, a mandarin orange variety. They are similar to tangerines, but are seedless! Tons of Vitamin C to keep your immune system healthy during flu season.

When I cut the kale, I always trim the stem off. It is very tough. Also I shred the Kale into tiny bits. It can be a little bitter, but the tartness and acidity of the clementines and pomegranates counteract any unsavory taste from Kale.

How to cut a pomegranate:

Slice into quarters, fill a bowl full of water. You’re going to break apart the seeds from the pith membrane in the water. The equilibrium of the water makes it so less seeds break open. You retain much more of the juice this way and less mess. The juice from a pomegranate will definitely stain your Carrera Marble countertop! (oh, I’m trained as an interior designer, this is when my geeky design side starts showing :)

Carefully break apart the seeds pods from the membrane.

The pith floats to the top– seeds stay on the bottom! Now just rinse the seeds and lay on a paper towel to dry.

Time to assemble the salad. I used a mix of romaine, kale, and a spring salad mix w/ dark leafy greens. The darker the greens, the more vitamins you get! I also added dried cranberries, I like the chewy texture and cranberries are a great because they prevent bacterial infections.

I used a basic olive oil and lemon dressing for this. I think that a too complicated dressing competes with the sweetness of the fruit. 

But, you could always serve with a raspberry vinaigrette!

Here at Savory Event Catering, this is one of our favorite salads to serve at a winter wedding. The colors are so vibrant they look great on the buffet table!