Buffet Ideas

#1
Its soon to be my dear old granny's 75th birthday, and were going to be doing a buffet for her and 40 guests. Its going to be taking place on a canal barge *sigh*, so im hoping to make the food a bit more lively an a bit poshed up, not the bowl of crisps, scotch eggs and cheese & pineapple jobbie.

Anyone got suggestions :?
 
#3
Lots of things you can do, I'll PM you in the morning, but have you had a look at the barge?

Okay there will be seating and tables to sit the drink on, but will there be space/long tables to set up a cold buffet for 40 people?

bear in mind most platters are round or oval and various sizes. Even dinner plate size will need even MORE room, plus paper/china plates, cutlery, napkins and not forgetting bin bags, which you may have to remove yourself...

The thing most folk forget is refridgeration. Has it been cooked and then COOLEd properly and kept below 5c. How long between transport from family fridges to venue, and how long will it be on "display".

90 minutes is the max recommendation.

But you may arrive at 6.30pm, guests in for 7pm and say eating at 9pm. Family will arrive at 7pm say, bringing food with them so it already way over the safe zone for toxins to develop.

Don't want to piss on your parade but as a Chef, we don't eat buffets for these reasons.

If I go down with the trots I'm off for a week, it's another week until the returned stool sample results give me the all clear - that's two weeks off without pay.

If I make someone ill it's a £20,000 fine per PERSON, never mind the jail term that's added!!!

A barge in the country sounds idyllic, but any chance you could get a community hall? It's bigger, closer and may have some fridge facilities.

Any other queries Ondy just ask - will PM you tomorrow.
 
#4
Riabright said:
Get them all so tipsy on the cooking sherry that they won't care what the grub is like...... :D
Aldi & Iceland do some good stuff.
Try www.simplydoesit.com/favourite_buffet_food.html
You could be onto something there, and the good thing about sherry is theres never a low proof substitute around. Gotta be careful we dont get any drunk overboards though, my nans a proper handful i tell you! :D

Sparky2339" said:
Lots of things you can do, I'll PM you in the morning, but have you had a look at the barge?
Okay there will be seating and tables to sit the drink on, but will there be space/long tables to set up a cold buffet for 40 people?
bear in mind most platters are round or oval and various sizes. Even dinner plate size will need even MORE room, plus paper/china plates, cutlery, napkins and not forgetting bin bags, which you may have to remove yourself...
The thing most folk forget is refridgeration. Has it been cooked and then COOLEd properly and kept below 5c. How long between transport from family fridges to venue, and how long will it be on "display".
90 minutes is the max recommendation.
But you may arrive at 6.30pm, guests in for 7pm and say eating at 9pm. Family will arrive at 7pm say, bringing food with them so it already way over the safe zone for toxins to develop.
Don't want to urine on your parade but as a Chef, we don't eat buffets for these reasons.
If I go down with the trots I'm off for a week, it's another week until the returned stool sample results give me the all clear - that's two weeks off without pay.
If I make someone ill it's a £20,000 fine per PERSON, never mind the jail term that's added!!!
A barge in the country sounds idyllic, but any chance you could get a community hall? It's bigger, closer and may have some fridge facilities.
Most, infact none of that had crossed my mind! Havent seen the barge but its meant to big, and its got booths in it apparently so i suppose the food would go into one of those. I need to find out more about it and maybe the food will be limited by the space??? When you think of all that stuff you mentioned, then the food, drinks, and then the cake, its sounds 'cosy' already.

That is one expensive shi...bowl movement.

Hang about though, you know alot about Food H & S, thought you were a sparky? :scratch:
 
#5
Check PM Ondy.

Sparky is my nickname and the nmbrs are my last four in case folks are confused. :D
 
#7
An item of buffet food will within 5 mintues of the buffet opening have 10 seperate trace urine samples on it........this is due to the common problem of men/children ( rarely women) not washing their hands and then feeling the need to pick up and inspect the food on display, deside against it and put it back.

Learnt this on my Health and Hygene certificate course and for this reason I also aviod all types of buffet food.

HTH

WW

P.S at the end of the evening a bowl of nuts on a public house bar can contain anything up to 80 different trace urine samples
 
#8
WW

Too true, however...

As children, my brothers and sisters and I were "encouraged" to wash our hands after being outside, before/after the toilet, before and after eating etc.

We soon learned that carbolic stung less than a thrashing from my Gran.

In the 70's if you were seen washing yer mitts in the gent's sink ye were a poof!!!

I can honestly say that these days, a bloke leaving the gents WITHOUT washing his mitts will incurr tut tutts and "hoy mingin git" etc.

I'm glad times have changed in this respect but there are, you're right, still some who are manky barrstuards!!!

Peanuts on the bar is a classic....
 
#9
The salt on the peanuts will kill the germs.

Considering the "barge". If this is a canal narrow boat it will be a maximum of 70 ft long and less than 7 feet wide. Internally it will be be more like 60' by 6' 6". It will have about 5' 10" feet of headroom and access will be down steps from the deck at each end through a narrow door with low headroom. One chemical toilet will be provided. I can think of no worse place to try to feed forty people with a buffet.

Take a careful look at the dimensions and then imagine another thirty six people in there:


Hope you're not inviting this bloke!

Makes the point about dimensions again though.

This commercial outfit only reckon on catering for 12 and they do it for a living:


As for the buffet itself, promise me there won't be vol-au-vents with cold condensed mushroom soup in them!
 
#10
Well said Ex-Stab.

And those pictures were the clincher.

"A Pitcher is worth a thousand turds" as my Gran used to say.

Over to you Ondy...
 
#14
This is making me hungry.......

Tell them to wear sensible shoes.
If they are elderly, going on a canal boat, & probably having a tipple, they need the right shoes, or you'll be fishing them out of the water all night.... :eek:
It better be a bloody big boat if you're having 40 guests....could be a little, er, cosy in there.
 

mysteron

LE
Book Reviewer
#15
Ondy, putting aside H&S for a moment. One can argue that street parties of days yonder did all of the sins mentioned above and it was all fine - well, fine but your will be like the leper at a beauty pageant with the rest of our family does end up on the throne wishing their life away.

So....here is an alternative - why not order a pig/hogget to be roasted on the hard standing adjacent? BBQ never works as it either raw or burnt for the volume of people you are talking about.
 
#16
If i'm doing a BBq - and i did one for 2000 god botherers three year ago with three of us - to prevent throne worship;

If its chicken cook the day before and chill it down to 5 degress or lower. Heat it up on the day.

But always have a thermo probe to check the foods above 82 degrees.

In Scotland the food temp regulations are higher.

Cook to 75 minimum unless asked for bleu etc
Hot hold above 62 minimum
Reheat to 82 minimum
Chill to below 5 if possible.

Always use gloves with raw food and dont mix them up. If poss one person does raw and one does the cooking/finishing off, one serves and one takes the cash.

This stops cross contamination in tandem with usual food practices.

I think we're going to put him off actually :(
 
#17
Why not park the barge outside a friendly and obliging canalside pub?

Mr. or Mrs. Landlord will be delighted to have all those customers,and might well do you a deal on a buffet which would be waiting for you on arrival, or for a small fee allow you to bring your own food beforehand.
 
#18
Grownup_Rafbrat said:
Why not park the barge outside a friendly and obliging canalside pub?

Mr. or Mrs. Landlord will be delighted to have all those customers,and might well do you a deal on a buffet which would be waiting for you on arrival, or for a small fee allow you to bring your own food beforehand.
That's got to be the DS solution.

Boat trip to buffet at pub. Winner!
 
#19
EX_STAB said:
Grownup_Rafbrat said:
Why not park the barge outside a friendly and obliging canalside pub?

Mr. or Mrs. Landlord will be delighted to have all those customers,and might well do you a deal on a buffet which would be waiting for you on arrival, or for a small fee allow you to bring your own food beforehand.
That's got to be the DS solution.

Boat trip to buffet at pub. Winner!
Yes, less hassle, "x" amount per head and no running around like heedless chickens (they never heed ye) and SAFER!!!
 

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