TerryDoo!!!,..Yeah simple is the way to go. Buffets are a great way to save time, and can be alot more fun, as they encourage mingling.
When I do my own parties, if it's a seated dinner for friends I like to serve everything family style, I think it's alot more fun...maybe it just reminds me of some great celebrations growing up. And, Yes, there are some great prepared foods out there,..and there's nothing wrong with saving a little time sometimes.
KitchenPete- Parties for 40??,, that's alot, puts you in the "pro" category as far as I'm concerned! :wink:
Planning amounts of food can seem difficult,..but I think it's easier if you know the people you're serving,..with friends at least I know what they like. The proportions Cav mentioned, are great. I also think that they are guidelines, and that the best judgement comes with the more parties you do.
Cav- When I was managing restaurants I would occasionally have guests call the next day, thinking that they had over-tipped,.ASKING FOR REFUNDS!!
Can you imagine the thought process that would make you think that was OK??,..I can't.
Most of my clients know me, and just accept my judgement as far as the amount of servers I need,..but there are always the exceptions!
I have just been dead-honest with them, and at times have said "Maybe you should hire another caterer?",..They always back down, then end up thinking I'm their best friend,...weirdos!