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Old 02-23-2017, 11:59 AM   #1
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250 guests event planning

This is kind of multi question question.

Event is on Monday, at 4 PM. I have whole day Sunday and Monday. It is a commercial kitchen and I will have two ovens. Otherwise it is not a well stocked kitchen. The dinner will be served buffet style, but we will try to make it nice. Event is for adults and kids.

First of all, does anybody have an experience cooking dinner for so many people? My concern is time management. I will be cooking 3 things. 60 pounds rib eye roast, same amount chuck roast, and also same amount of boneless skinless chicken breasts.

I am not really good at planning, especially that kind of event.

I also need a general menu advise. Salad, for example, what kind and maybe how many different salads? Salad bar where people will chose what they want or actual salad with all the fixings and dressing? Or maybe actual salad but2-3 different dressings on the side? The host would like fancy dinner. Would be nice to accommodate him.

Since it is right after work/school event should the soup be on the menu?

we will have cake ordered, but should we make bunch of cookies?

Gosh, I think there are more questions, but since I have no idea about cooking for so many people neither do I know what to ask.


I am open for all kind of suggestions. Menu, recipe, way to serve, how to keep food warm, drinks, dessert, etc.

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Old 02-23-2017, 12:28 PM   #2
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250 people? On such short notice? One word comes to mind: YIKES!

The most I've ever cooked for was just under 100. It was a buffet, but a staggered event where people came and went over a period of 4 hours. So I didn't have to have everything ready all at once. Even then, it was a LOT of work.

I think the biggest problem you will run into with prime rib is that people like varying degrees of doneness. The majority will eat it medium rare, but you always have those people who insist on having theirs well done. With a small crowd you can usually handle the well done requests on a piecemeal basis, but for that many, I would probably have at least one roast cooked more the others in advance.

For salad, I would also do that buffet style.

Hopefully you're not doing this all yourself, and there will be a staff to help!
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:17 PM   #3
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Go for a Swedish smörgåsbord.

It a buffet style, will be filling and easy on you.
You have choice of bread,Sweden we use rye bread, crisp bread, white rolls, any thing that is yummy and made out of bread.

Then you have a large collection of sandwich stuffing, like wet salads, vegetables, meatballs, pickled herring, cold cuts, cheese and dressings and then every one makes the sandwich of their dream . it fun, yummy and filling.

We have done the same idea with leba bread, pita bread and tortillas, let every one make their own, but ion this case it was hot dishes instead of cold as it normally is.
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:28 PM   #4
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Ummm... this sounds very daunting ....

How big is your fridge?

Chuck roast is not good as a dry heat roast, IMO. Its much better as a pot roast.

You could do that on Sunday if you have enough room to store it safely.
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:31 PM   #5
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Wow, Charlie, that's huge! I hope you have help, too! I have never cooked for that many, but I was a waitress at a military officers' club in college, so I worked many large catered events.

Do you have any other cooking equipment besides the ovens? A flat-top grill, a stove, anything? Can you borrow slow cookers or electric roasters? And does the food need to be kosher?

You can get large aluminum pans with lids for serving the chicken and chuck roast. You can also get stands and Sterno to keep the food warm. I imagine you will need to stage some of the food in the kitchen and have it ready to go out to refill serving dishes in the dining room. If there is space, it would be best if you could have two separate sets of buffet tables with the same menu on both sets. That will help the buffet lines go faster.

Assuming you will have help serving, I would have at least a couple of carving stations for the rib roasts. The chuck roasts can be sliced in the kitchen. If you offer a few sauces - one with mustard and one with horseradish, for example - you can use simple seasonings on the meat.

I would do the chicken piccata style, with olive oil, lemon juice, white wine and capers.

Rice pilaf or couscous are good choices to go on the side, and you can make them ahead and reheat; keep them warm in and serve from slow cookers, if possible. Add some dried cranberries or cherries and chopped parsley or green onions to make it look pretty.

Another side could be herbed green beans with onions and roasted red peppers.

Fill several of the large aluminum pans with the same salad: a simple one with spring mix, shredded carrots and sliced cucumbers with two dressings available - one vinaigrette and one creamy. If you give people too many choices, they will take forever serving themselves. I don't think you need both soup and salad. I also don't think you need both cookies and cake, unless the occasion calls for it.

Some large events I've seen have serving dishes of salad dressings and sauces, as well as baskets of bread and butter, on the tables, which will speed up the movement of people through the line.

And start making lists: write down each menu item and the ingredients needed to make it for, say, 10 people. Then you can multiply it out and figure out how much of each ingredient you will need.

Once you have decided on the menu, decide what you can make in advance (sauces, dressings, starches, etc.) and make those first. Whatever is temperature-sensitive, like the rib roast, should be made last.

Hope this helps.
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:36 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CakePoet View Post
... pickled herring, ....
right, here they will pickle me in the pickled herring juice if I serve that.
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Kroll View Post
250 people? On such short notice? One word comes to mind: YIKES!

The most I've ever cooked for was just under 100. It was a buffet, but a staggered event where people came and went over a period of 4 hours. So I didn't have to have everything ready all at once. Even then, it was a LOT of work.

I think the biggest problem you will run into with prime rib is that people like varying degrees of doneness. The majority will eat it medium rare, but you always have those people who insist on having theirs well done. With a small crowd you can usually handle the well done requests on a piecemeal basis, but for that many, I would probably have at least one roast cooked more the others in advance.

For salad, I would also do that buffet style.

Hopefully you're not doing this all yourself, and there will be a staff to help!

I'm more concern about how to cook that much rib eye roast. I'm going to shoot for medium rare. Those that like well done can eat the chuck, I will cook that overnight. I am going to have help. I'm not worry about that. I think I'll be more concern about equipment. it is not well stocked kitchen.
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:48 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by CharlieD View Post
I'm more concern about how to cook that much rib eye roast.
How big are the ovens? You will have essentially six 10-pound roasts. If the ovens are big enough, you can cook them mostly all at once. Stagger them a little bit, so they're not all done at the same time, so some will finish while you're serving the rest.
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:52 PM   #9
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.... Whatever is temperature-sensitive, like the rib roast, should be made last.

Hope this helps.

I was wondering about rib-eye roast. The only problem is the amount and unfamiliar stove.

I will have stove top, I think 8 or 10 burners.
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:54 PM   #10
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Whatever is temperature-sensitive, like the rib roast, should be made last.

.


Id definitely suggest making the chicken last. It will cook very quickly and boneless skinless chicken breasts don't hold that well.
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