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Comfort foods for winter events

In the winter, comfort foods make us feel better, for whatever reason we may need.  While the weather outside may be frightfully chilly, enhancing your menus with simple offerings to ramp up the sense of coziness will add a delightfully sentimental feel to your upcoming events. 

Comfort foods continue to be a major catering and events trend, and they are an easy addition to update your menu offerings. When combined with family style service to supplement the dining experience, it adds little nostalgia and interaction.

Braised Veal Osso Buco; © 2016 D. Jones Photography

A sentimental but sexy pairing, such as Braised Veal Osso Buco with black tea jus, pancetta polenta cake, and crispy roasted Brussels sprouts will satisfy the yearnings for comfort classics with contemporary flair.

The big, bold flavors of Osso Buco create an on-trend update to the quintessential classical comfort food dish. After cooking, reduce the braising liquid to intensify the flavors. Serve the Osso Buco with a black tea reduction over a pancetta polenta cake to soak up the robust, hearty, meaty and delicious flavors…is your mouth watering yet?

Viva la vegetable!

One of the most interesting trends within comfort food is the vegetable revolution. Guests are looking for exciting ways to serve vegetables during events. Long gone are the days of the vegetable “medley.”  Chefs and catering teams are jazzing up the green and healthy factor with traditional favorites redone with new appeal. Brussels sprouts have been updated for today’s palates in extraordinary ways. Roasted and crispy, with a garlic balsamic reduction, these green mini cousins of the humble cabbage are the current stars of the vegetable kingdom. Their deliciously crispy leaves add tasty texture to the plate, and guests can’t seem to get enough of them! These culinary stars can be julienned and added to a salad if your guests feel the kale revolution is getting a bit stale. Brussels sprouts are nutrient rich, and high in vitamin C and omega 3 fatty acids, too.

Give the traditional favorites a makeover in 2017 with innovative twists and exhilarating presentations to create a feast for the eyes and the palate. Inventive offerings will boost your creativity and inspire diners to think outside the traditional. This year, modernize your winter menus with exciting, classical offerings items that will ramp up your revenues and bottom line profits. And remember, summer will be here before you know it. 


Lisa Carruth, CPCE is the Director of Catering and Member Events, BraeBurn Country Club


National Association for Catering and Events

The National Association for Catering and Events (NACE) is the premier destination for catering and event professionals of all backgrounds, specialties, and experience levels. Our members are a passionate and vibrant community of innovators, organizers, and creators who look to us for resources and networks that help them thrive. We provide education, certification and a network of resources for members in all segments of the catering and events industry.