I was recently asked to cater for a wedding. Around 150 people, with a budget of R8000 – which includes drinks. To save you the calculations, the budget works out to just over R50 per person – which is, well, pretty darn tidy.
It got me thinking about wedding catering and a few of the more budget friendly options that could help you save a few Rand with your menu. Now, I’m not promising you’ll be able to feed everyone on R50 – but every bit helps, right?
Canapés vs starters
This one is tricky. Your guests will likely need something to nibble on while you and your husband are getting your photographs done –so canapés are the obvious solution. Generally, this is then followed by a (at least) three-course meal. Is it all necessary? Probably not. Bread or starch-based canapés will generally be the cheaper options : think bruschetta topped with sundried tomato and mozzarella, small tartlets or mini chicken pastries. If you cater on enough canapés per person, you could also ignore the starter option completely. Guests won’t be ravenous.
Main course options
Anything very “meaty” will generally be the more expensive option: steak, lamb shanks and sadly now even the previously more unloved cuts of meat (shin / neck) are becoming more popular and expensive. Fish and chicken would be the most budget friendly and can be equally delicious.
Desserts and Wedding Cakes
If you’re trying to keep the budget down, there’s no need to serve both – if you plan carefully. If your wedding cake is a deliciously rich chocolate fudge cake or carrot cake – you can easily serve this as dessert. With a fantastic cup of after-dinner coffee, there will be no complaints from your guests. If you’d like, you can also offer chocolate truffles, petits fours or even shortbread biscuits with coffee, if you want something a little extra-special, and budget allows.
As your food costs will generally be the biggest at your wedding, it pays to give it some special thought and attention, as it will also be one of the biggest areas where you are able to save.
Read more from Candice as she planned her wedding in our Bride to Be section.
Photographs courtesy of Candice Bresler ©
Happy Wedding Planning!