Friday, June 4, 2010

Have your cake...or ice cream, or pie...and eat it too

As a continuation of Mondays post...what if you are not into cake at all?  Are there other options?  You betcha!!!! :)

For someone like me who isn’t really a huge fan of cake, I opted to go for a dessert & gourmet coffee bar at my reception.

I love coffee, espresso, cappuccino & lattes, so offering my guests more than just a bulk house drip coffee was important to me. Set up a “Coffee Bar” with chocolate shavings, flavored syrups, whipped cream, caramel and cinnamon. Also, to go cups with lids are always a good idea, it has been a long night, possibly with some cocktails why not send your guests out with a warm caffeinated beverage.

Dessert stations, basically a buffet setup that guests visit, are gaining popularity. Even if you're doing a seated meal, a dessert station gives guests a chance to circulate a bit. I've seen stations that range from elaborate tables with every confection imaginable to simple themed offerings. Very popular right now: the candy bar. A table full of sweets the couple loved from their childhood-like malted milk balls, jelly beans, and caramel popcorn. Put out empty bags for guests to take home their favorites, this could double as their favors.

For alternative desserts think about your favorites, special moments in your relationship and just your everyday life together. Simple, beloved American-style desserts like apple tarts, pie a la mode, and gooey brownies smothered in ice cream will fit the bill. If you want something more elegant, serve "dessert trios," so each guest is presented with three miniature sweets on a single platter.

Where is your favorite place to go out to eat? Maybe there's a special dessert on the menu at your local haunt that you always order-and always find yourselves fighting over that last bite. Do you treat yourselves to Krispy Kremes on Sunday mornings? Imagine a dressed-up variations on the humble (yet legendary) doughnut.

Did you travel somewhere special together and discover something wonderful? A getaway to France may have inspired an apple tarte tatin. Is it important to incorporate something from your ethnic background? If you're Italian, you gotta have cannolis, but why not do mini ones with a variety of creams from ricotta to French? Likewise, Latino couples might opt for a creative spin on the traditional flan.

If you are a chocolate lover; a truffle station, where an assortment of individual chocolates and chocolate covered confections are offered, have chocolate cordial cups filled with a delicious liqueur alongside truffles. Or have a dramatic chocolate fountain; you can actually one shaped like a three-tiered wedding cake. Have a table of “dippable” goodies such as marshmallows, pound cakes, fruit, cookies & pretzels. You can offer shot glasses of milk to accompany your chocolate indulgence.

Love ice cream bars? Have a cart -- like the ones sidewalk vendors use -- positioned in a corner of the dining room so that guests can dig right in after dinner. That way, you can have your cake, or ice cream, or pie...and eat it too.

**picture credit to Hostess Blog

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