In today’s world, most businessmen and women live a health-conscious lifestyle and would likely opt for a Mediterranean-style scrambled egg breakfast or an avocado shake over the traditional English fry-up. As medical science continues to advance and we become increasingly aware of the importance of living a healthy lifestyle, people will always be on the lookout for the healthier options when it comes to food – and corporate events are no exception.
So, with that in mind, what exactly do these high-flying professionals want to see served up, when they attend a corporate event? Let’s be honest, the success of the day could hinge on the quality of the buffet, so catering companies need to get serious about providing the best possible food for the occasion. Together with Flogas Shop, suppliers of gas for BBQs, we run you through our best catering ideas for corporate events.
Spice up the traditional afternoon tea
Let’s not beat around the bush, if you serve up the traditional egg and cress or cheese and ham sarnies, despite them being delicious, the food isn’t likely to blow the minds of your guests.
However, that doesn’t mean the traditional lunch choice of sandwiches is somehow defunct. In fact, there exist a number of fillings that will get heads turning and bellies rumbling, although plain white bread probably won’t make the slice. Instead, impress your guests with spicy roasted shrimp with avocado mayonnaise or a fiery Mexican BLT served on freshly baked sourdough. These are just two of our favorites that will ensure plates are empty.
Another option would be to take your sandwich expression to a new level and call upon Philadelphian eatery, Elsie’s for inspiration. Have you ever found yourself wishing you got a bit more bite (of pickle) for your buck? Well, using Elsie’s method that won’t be a concern, as this deli substitutes bread for the brine-soaked vegetable!
You can forget serving the traditional English breakfast tea with your funky sandwiches and switch it round for the likes of a lemon drizzle or a Turkish apple-infused hot drink. And to finish — well, we don’t think anyone would begrudge a well-baked slice of Victoria sponge.
Bring in the bowl food
A concept that featured heavily in Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding day, bowl food does exactly what it says on the tin. Bowl food can feature any cuisine and is served in a hand-sized dish with a small fork. As a serving method, this is perhaps the most ideal for a corporate event as it allows people to continue mingling, rather than be restricted to one table.
Make it a buddha bowl
If you’re catering for guests at breakfast time, you could try stepping up and away from the traditional norm with a buddha bowl. Layer the base of your bowl with pan fried spinach, and top it with tomatoes, avocadoes, and poached eggs — add sliced chipolatas and lardons to cater for the meat eaters among us. After this, the multiple minds will be fueled for the rest of the day, and the creative juices more than flowing.
If you’re setting up a winter event, don’t be afraid to serve up something more homely. A small portion of steak pieces, carrot, parsnip, onion, and root mash will trump most competition. However, a Christmas time vegan favourite is curried chickpeas with roasted brussels sprouts. Mix the dish up with radish, avocado, sweet potato and tahini, and serve over a base of quinoa.
Our Australian counterparts have the right idea when it comes to taking the catering outdoors. Okay, admittedly this one might take a little longer, but we can guarantee it will reap rewards. Full of omega 3 and scientifically proven to be good for the brain, the humble fish is a popular choice among young professionals. Jamie Oliver has coined a fantastic recipe of barbequed trout wrapped in newspaper — incredibly high in protein, it will prove to be a hit with any of the health conscious too. Alternatively, if you want to take things ‘truly Down Under’, you can’t do much better than shrimp on a stick, on the barbie!
Of course, you aren’t limited to a seafood barbeque. Breakfast has proved to be successful cooked on the grill at events in recent years, as has the popular vegetarian dish, halloumi and tzatziki.
Go Asian Inspired
Why not serve up chicken tikka masala which actually originated in the UK, developed by South Asian restaurants. Spice up your event with some traditional Asian culture and draw upon the combination of intense flavours. The Curry Squad, a company based just outside of London, has been bringing its street food sensations to the people of the capital for the past six years. Drawing upon their vast knowledge of flavours from cities such as Bombay and Lahore, the chefs offer an authentic Indian experience. Some of their specialties include ‘bhaji bites’, ‘popping candy gol gappas’, and ‘amritsari rajme chole’.
Fire up the Pan
Paella is both affordable and requires minimal effort to make, making it ideal for large events. Grab some frozen seafood mix, risotto rice, chorizo sausage, lemon and lime, and herbs and spices — it really is up to you. Fortunately, with paella, you can get creative as it really depends on the taste preferences of the guests. White or red wine can be added, but bear in mind the rest of a creative afternoon before dashing half a bottle in.
This concept may have you scratching your head, but it’s surprisingly effective. A clover in the foam of a pint of Guinness always appeared to be somewhat of a sneaky marketing ploy as you indulged in the first sip. However, if you are trying to conduct a bit of subliminal messaging, this might be exactly what you’re after. Stencils can be used as a way to write your company or organisations name in coffee, or call upon the likes of Branding Irons to develop a customised food stamp. Bagels, burgers, and pancakes will never be the same.
You’ll need to have the MET office on your side for this one, so we would strongly suggest having a contingency plan in place if, like Travis, it always rains on you. You can pull it out of the bag with a wicker basket, complete with blanket, cafetière, and a selection of Danish pastries.
Go plant friendly
Why not step it up a notch when it comes to catering for the increasing population of vegans and vegetarians by adding some animal-friendly options to your menu. These days there are many interesting vegan recipes being shared across the internet and some of our favorite nibbles such as chocolate and beer are now available to vegans.
Another classic that you can offer vegan and vegetarian guests is the alternative liqueur by besos. The newly produced liqueur will certainly prove popular with guests for its delicious rich-yet-smooth flavor.
So, we’ve taken you through seven innovative food ideas for you to apply to your next corporate event. In the competitive world of catering, it’s all about success and that’s exactly what these tasty treats will deliver!