Tuesday, January 15, 2013

How to Create A Musical Reception Theme

Last week I faced the task of creating a stylish yet savvy, collegiate senior reception for my daughter. Sloane, the baby girl, "control fanatic" has a difficult time trusting me. Our final conversation included me asking "What colors do you want?" and her saying "Black and White". My final, final words on the subject "I don't start a project to fail. Chill out!" Our first stop, the florist. I told our floral artist "We don't want the flowers to look better than the food." He said with a swish of his head and an expert smirk
"Oh, yes you do!" And I became...convinced!

I designed food for three oblong tables. Arriving at the Arts Center the night of the recital I found two oblong and a round table. Not what I expected! Sloane may have known due to the call I received earlier that afternoon reassuring me and asking for my full participation in calmness if something went wrong! Luckily our florist graciously gave us, FREE, a third bouquet I had not ordered. He single-handedly avoided my spontaneous combustion with his attention to detail. He ordered more roses when the ones he got he considered sub-standard leaving him and ultimately us with an extra.

I opted for a dessert bar for several reasons:
  1. a reception hour after 8 pm
  2. easy to make all white and black desserts with a music theme
  3. desserts are popular in any flavor
The menu (all homemade by my mom and me):
Sensational doesn't describe the results!
Our savvy table dressings began with Hobby Lobby Wedding White tablecloth (3 @ 50% sale or $9.99 each), black broadcloth for table runner (enough for the length of your table @ 30% sale) and the center triangle, one yard of broadcloth with a music note pattern.  Our runner 15 inches wide.  I bought 3 yards of 45" wide fabric and cut it into 3-15" inch wide pieces. Overlap them on the table, no one knows but you! Remember to use Hobby Lobby's online coupon for more discounts!
 We cheated on these coconut cakes. The layers made with Duncan Hines white cake mix.  The frosting is homemade seven minute frosting. The recipe is linked above. The chocolate notes made with semi-sweet chocolate with a candy mold. You can see one of the lollipop sticks if you look closely.
These took some time and patience but worth it! We transported them in a cooler to keep the treble clefs from running.  I piped these with a Wilton #3 point adding some Crisco to the chocolate to thin it enough to manage with a pastry bag.
Easy, easy easy! Dipping and drizzling these strawberries--a piece of cake! The Betty Crocker recipe is linked above. We made a nifty serving dish by inverting a wine glass on one of my large dinner plates.  I hot-glued the glass to a small dinner plate to create the tier (it removed easily afterwards). Savvy and stylish!

Notice the black punch in the background! We prepared it the day before. It cooled completely black and beautiful.  It tasted much better after it had set overnight too. Total investment = Time and $350. The flowers accounted for a little over 50% of the costs.  White roses ain't savvy but definitely stylish! The only thing prettier than the food and the flowers......the girl!
french horn
Have you created any clever reception food? Leave me a message and tell me about your successes!

Hitting every note,
The Happy Handicap

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