Hosting Thanksgiving dinner for family and friends? As you know, it’s one of the most stressful holidays of the year. The house needs to be cleaned, guest rooms prepared, and recipes tested for side dishes, hors d’oeuvres, entrees and desserts.
It is said presentation is everything. Once the food is prepared, how will it be served? Are you planning to have a sit down dinner or buffet style? Is one main table enough or do you need a separate table for the kids? Do you have enough serving platters, bowls, and utensils? Food should not only taste good, but it needs to look appealing as well. Capture your guests’ attention and stimulate their appetites with these food presentation ideas.
Dining with an Incredible View
If your home has an outstanding view – ocean, lake, mountains, forest, garden, cityscape, etc. – seize the opportunity to showcase the view and your fabulous food by placing your table accordingly.
Dual Purpose Decor
This dining table centerpiece features a trio of ceramic pumpkins with matching leaf-shaped appetizer plates. Be sure to have plenty of coordinating coasters on hand to protect your fine wood surfaces.
Happy Hour – Beer & Cocktails
Food Becomes Art
These acorns, berries, and leaves have been artfully arranged upon the beautiful wood grain of a large cutting board. This would be a perfect setting to serve a dish of appetizers in the center.
Natural Serving Pieces
Everyone knows you can eat pumpkins, but why not use them to serve soups and dips?
Make Your Own Salad Bar
Store-Bought Salad Platter
With so many dishes to make, sometimes it’s just easier to let your local grocery store prepare a few items to save you time, while still making an impressive dish. If you want your guests to think it’s homemade, place the plastic store plate on top of a larger serving platter, and conceal the plastic rim with a vegetable garnish as shown.
Casual & Stylish Family Buffet
Meat & Potatoes with a Twist
Thick cuts of beef are layered over sprigs of green herbs and topped with baby golden potatoes on this hearty platter.
Food Safety for Chargers
You’ll notice in this photo that a charger is mistakenly being used as a serving platter for a chicken dinner. Food Safety Tip: These resin or metal plates are for decorative use only – they are NOT FOOD SAFE. Food should not come into direct contact with the charger. Instead, set another smaller plate on top to hold the food (especially hot items), or line it with aluminum foil, plastic wrap, a paper doily, or wax paper.
And let’s not forget the most anticipated part of the meal…
Besides the delicious choices, there’s a lot going on in this set up. Chocolate truffles have been placed in the center of cheerful yellow silk flowers. Chocolate mousse and vanilla bean custard are adorned with confectionary sprinkles and topped with tiny yellow bows tied to spoons. Cake stands have been used to achieve varying heights. Autumn flowers in a mixture of glass jars and bowls create the perfect balance in this inviting and delectable presentation.
Multi-Tiered Dessert Display
Dilemma: Which confection to try first? Solution: I’ll have one of each please!
Desserts by Mother Nature
Carved fruit is a real attention getter. Carving kits or the right knife make it easier to create a breathtaking display that’s almost too pretty to eat…almost.
Dining by Candle Light
Don’t forget to consider the lighting for your guests’ dining pleasure. There’s a reason why many restaurants have dimmed lighting and lit candles upon the tables. The warm, cozy ambiance stimulates your appetite and invites you to relax and enjoy.
Traditional Holiday Fare
We eat with our eyes first. With creative planning, having a dinner party can be an enjoyable and successful event for everyone, including the hosts. Choose your menu, set the stage, and let the curtain rise on a spectacular meal to the resounding cheers of your guests. You’ve got this!
Happy Holidays & Happy Crafting!