Expert advice about catering

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your West Midlands Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to editor@yourwestmidlands.wedding

 

Winter menu

Winter menu

Q. We want a winter menu for our wedding in February, what types of yummy food would you suggest?

A. Richard Cummins says: Here's the perfect winter menu that has received a great response from before, it's from an competition earlier this year to raise money to support Anthony Nolan, a charity that helps people suffering from blood cancer. It was a prize for six people who raised more than £1,600 on the evening.

This five-course menu was written specifically for February and includes a hot starter featuring chicken and chorizo roulade, a beautiful winter warming dish of slow-braised beef in ale and with Burton-on-Trent just up the road, good ale is a no-brainer! This was paired with roasted winter roots and everyone's favourite – a velvet-like buttery mash with just a pinch of nutmeg and garlic.

For dessert an indulgently rich chocolate marquis with a smooth mascarpone to cut through that rich Belgian chocolate is perfect.

Rich desserts and the odd cheeky reminder that summer's just around the corner, such as our pina colada parfait for amuse-bouche. We tend to offer this complimentary on our menu's and keep this a secret for the evening, giving customer a surprise and the chef a chance to go off script and do what their best at.

Richard Cummins
www.facebook.com/westwoodsbespoke

 

Warming canapés

Warming canapés

Q. For our winter wedding we want to have warming canapés to give guests some tasty snacks for the drinks reception. What would you suggest?

A. Satnam Kaur says: When asked what starters or canapés we'd serve at a drinks reception it has to be chaats. In India, chaat is a word that describes more than just snacks and canapés – it's a way of life. The crispy, crunchy, spicy and tangy snack is down-right addictive!

We serve a wide variety of chaats, vegetable ones and non vegetable, which are great for starters such as Pani puri, a spherical fried crisps filled with potatoes, chickpeas, onions, and chutneys, served with tamarind flavoured water. To eat a golgappa, you spoon a little bit of the water into the centre of the crisp, it's truly a sensational experience. Another great chaat we serve is samosas chaat – this is a dish that gets taste buds dancing and is made of a base of chopped samosas, topped with chutney, yoghurt and sev. Our aloo tikki chaat is always a talking point which is spiced potato patties topped with a punjabi garnish and when dipped liberally with the cilantro and mint chutneys gets lips smacking.

Here at Urban Spice Box, we're a family-operated mobile catering business based in the west midlands who's expertise come from the streets of Punjab to the British wedding scene where we bring you Indian flavours with the best British ingredients. From starters to desserts we've got it!

Satnam Kaur
www.facebook.com/urbanspiceboxltd

 

Festive menu

Festive menu

Q. For our winter wedding we'd love to have a festive menu. What foods would you suggest?

A. Julie Collins says: Winter is such a lovely season for delicious heartwarming meals made with local produce. We suggest a delicious roast root soup with locally sourced artisan bread to start – or maybe a trio starter with all of your favourites including a warm scotch egg, British fishcake and goats cheese bon bons. It is up to you to decide what you love to eat and our chefs will deliver.

For the main course you cannot go wrong with roast chicken, pigs in blankets and traditional stuffing, roast root vegetables and your choice of potatoes. Mine would be dauphinoise or classic roast. All finished off with a deep flavoursome jus.

Dessert would be a salted caramel garden pot to add some fun to the meal or a sticky toffee apple pudding and custard served in a kilner jar for something warm.

Finished with tea and coffee for guests if they fancy it. We believe in giving you what you love and going the extra mile to help build a menu together that speaks about you as a couple.

Julie Collins
www.vanillainallseasons.co.uk

 

...The caterer

...The caterer

Q. What advice would you give me on choosing my wedding caterer?

A. Julie Collins says: Go with your gut reaction! Have the caterers taken time to get to know you personally and what you like and don't like to eat? Do you feel like you can work with them? Do they respond to your questions promptly?

As a bespoke caterer we take the time to get to know our couples and clients and we help them to build a menu based on how they envisage the day will flow and what type of dining they want – relaxed sharing food, formal dining or even a mix of styles over the courses. If our couples want fish and chips then that's what they'll have – and really amazing fish and chips at that!

Julie Collins
www.vanillainallseasons.co.uk

 

Food for thought

Food for thought

Q. I'm looking for a fun alternative to a three-course roast for my winter wedding – what would you suggest?

A. Jay Jones says: Start with a seasonal table sharing platter with a variety of meats, cheeses, pickles, chutneys and fresh bread – they're always a talking point and a great way to get your guests mingling.

For the main course we specialise in pies. Our favourite for this time of year would be turkey, smoked bacon and cranberry served with red wine gravy, skins on mash, pickled red cabbage and crispy onions for texture. Followed by a winter warming sticky toffee pudding with vanilla custard – delicious.

Jay Jones
www.pietanic.co.uk

 

Food for thought

Food for thought

Q. We're a fairly laid-back couple and could think of nothing worse than sitting down to a three-course dinner with our guests – it's just not us. What are our other options when it comes to big-day catering?

A. Emma Peak says: I've found that more and more couples are opting for an alternative wedding including a more relaxed approach to dining. It's your special day so I believe it's important to have exactly what you want, whether you'd like a barbecue, street food served in an artisan van, a traditional buffet, a three-course meal or even a seven-course tasting menu. At Moddershall Oaks we're fortunate to have award-winning chefs on-site who are very flexible and will work with you to create the perfect menu for your big day.

The one thing we always recommend is having one focal course to ensure that guests have enough energy to dance all the way through the night, which can always be followed by a buffet or some kind of snacks later on. For example, you could have a lovely hog roast after your ceremony, but then in the evening having something lighter like a ploughman's platter.

Emma Peak
www.moddershalloaks.com

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