Thursday 7 April 2011

Consistency, Consistency, Consistency

Hors d’oeuvres, amuses bouche, canapés, finger food…Whatever you call them, I’ve promised to produce 400 of them for an open house tomorrow. 

Prep is the big thing in this project:  Once all of the components are ready, the finished pieces can be put together assembly line style.  Good planning is important on a job like this.  Good knife skills are important too.  It wouldn’t be good to run out of an ingredient in the middle of prep (which usually falls around 1:00 am, when the grocery store are closed), nor would it be acceptable to have some servings larger or smaller than the rest.  Consistency, consistency, consistency is the mantra of the day.

So where is the creativity in a job like this?  It’s in the planning of the menu and in the way the finished dishes are assembled.  A good tray of hors d’oeuvres can be as pretty as a painting.  It should look so inviting that people can’t wait to sample it.

How do you work your way through all that prep without being bored out of your mind?  I listen to books on tape while I work and, when I’m weary, I remind myself that all this effort will lead to a beautiful and tasty end result.

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