When you're planning any type of special event, creating a menu that will "wow" your guests is probably at the top of your to-do list. If you're looking for one type of cuisine that is sure to please party-goers of all ages, consider Italian.
Italian cuisine is ideal for serving at events because it's very versatile and can accommodate a wide range of dietary preferences and restrictions. For example, there are plenty of meat- and even dairy-free meal options available for vegetarians and vegans in the crowd, or for those who are lactose intolerant.
You can't serve Italian cuisine at any type of special occasion, including birthday parties for both kids and adults, anniversary and graduation soirees, family reunions, holiday celebrations, bridal and baby showers, and wedding receptions. If you're hosting a large event, hire a local catering company or your favorite local Italian restaurant to make the food for you.
Here are some Italian catering ideas for your next special event:
1. Salads and Appetizers
Start the lunch or dinner off on a delicious note with Italian salads and appetizers. Treat guests to traditional Caprese salads made with sliced tomatoes, soft mozzarella, and fresh basil. You also can't go wrong with a traditional Caesar salad or a classic Italian pasta salad.
When it comes to Italian appetizers, have the catering company or restaurant prepare fried mozzarella cheese sticks served with marinara sauce, which will please kids of all ages. Other traditional Italian appetizers include fried eggplant, bruschetta, garlic knots, and antipasto platters.
2. Main Courses
You can serve Italian main courses either buffet or family-style to allow party-goers to get a taste of everything offered. If you're serving the food on a buffet table, keep the dishes fresh and hot on warming plates, and have guests make their own plates.
Some main course options include eggplant parmesan, spaghetti with marinara sauce and meatballs, fettuccine Alfredo, and both meat and vegetarian lasagnas. For kid's parties, have the young guests make their own personal pizzas using halved English muffins or bagels, tomato sauce, and shredded mozzarella cheese.
End the event with a variety of Italian-style desserts, such as ladyfingers, panna cotta, biscotti, assorted fruit tarts, and tiramisu. Set up a gelato bar, and have guests make their own cold and creamy creations using a variety of toppings, such as whipped cream, sprinkles, chocolate chips, and caramel and fudge sauces.
Reach out to an Italian catering service to learn more.