Cooking for a huge crowd in a reception or for any other occasion is quite different from cooking for a small number of people.You are expected to prepare a number of dishes within a stipulated period of time, with no compromise, whatsoever,on the quality and taste. One needs to be thoroughly prepared before the occasion to get that perfect taste. It may be in terms of getting all the ingredients ready or pre-preparing some of the ingredients required for cooking. This will at least relieve you from unnecessary stress. Even finding out the preferences of the people you are going to serve is an integral part of your preparation.
Tips on Preparation:
There are few preparation tips that you must follow while cooking for a crowd.
1. One should first jot down all the recipes that would be required along with the ingredients required and their costs. It must fit in your budget.
2. Make another list of items to be bought from market in two categories: one that can be bought beforehand such as spices and the other list would include items that must be bought fresh on the D day itself like dairy products and vegetables. You must double check the list to make sure that you have not left out any item.
3. Some pre preparation can be done such as making sandwiches, chopping vegetables, making desserts, cooking veggies to be used in stews and soups.
4. It is better to chalk out the time slot for each entry and the order in which it needs to be prepared and served.
5. You must ensure that there is space to cook on stove as well as to store the leftover food in the refrigerator.
6. It must be kept in mind that there are large enough pans and pots with you to prepare food in large quantities.
7. The best thing that one can do to keep food warm is to store it in a Crockpot.
8. The food that needs to be kept cool must be placed in a tray of ice.
9. If the food needs to be transported,you would need to think of ways to keep the food warm or cold as required.
Safety should always be your main concern.You must be extra careful since you are cooking for a huge crowd.
1. Cleanliness should be given top priority when you are cooking , whether for a huge crowd or for a small number of people.
2. The large quantity food being prepared must be properly and fully cooked.
3. The food, especially poultry recipes, must be carefully cooked and preserved so that there is no bacterial growth.
4. The discarded things such as peels of vegetables and fruits must be disposed off from the cooking area as these tend to produce foul smell. In some cases, your kitchen might also be infested by roaches and insects.
5. Before buying the poultry items, it should be ensured that they are fresh and fit for consumption.