If you don’t feel like being too daring with your main course, try some alternative dishes for the starter. Starter dishes can help set the tone for a Fall event without running the risk of alienating some the guests with an unusual main course.
Soup continues to be a major trend for all events — from birthday celebrations to wedding receptions. Soup is an ideal starter for a Fall event. As the weather cools, guests will appreciate the warm flavors that come with butternut squash, pumpkin, and root vegetable soups. You can also incorporate some Fall spices like nutmeg and cinnamon. Then, to make your meal feel complete, repeat some of these same flavors in the main course or dessert.
Cheese plates also make for a nice starter course. Served on rough cut wood planks, you can offer your guests a selection of cheese, dried fruit, nuts, and cured meats. This kind of started is also vegetarian friendly if you opt to serve the meats in a ramekin. Platters are also a nice way to offer fun and unusual chutneys like red onion-pumpkin or spiced apple.
Of course, you can always rely on a salad to satisfy your guests; however with a few minor adjustments you can turn this standard dish into a unique dining experience. Discuss adding a revolving platter (lazy Susan) in the center of each table to allow your guests to customize their salads. Set out options like walnuts, cranberries, cheese cubes, and chickpeas so guests can make salads to their individual tastes. Add a selection of dressings, and your guests will thank you for accommodating food sensitivities and diet preferences.
Sometimes the starter is the best way to experiment with food. If your guests don’t love the unique start, they will still be able to have a satisfying meal with a more traditional entree. Talk to your caterer about how to make your Fall event unique.