Luxebook October 2023

How often have you headed to a wedding and winced at the thought of having to eat all that rich food? There’s no reason to dread the calorie guilt any longer. The big, fat shaadi buffet is increasingly being shadowed by a smaller, grazing boards and tables. This is technically a buffet, but in a healthier avatar, with a stylish cheeseboard of exotic fruit, cheese, filo pastry, crackers, crudites, dips and other nibbles. These tables and platters are artfully done up with flowers and candles and guests walk around them, mingling, and casually dipping into offerings over the course of the function. The whole concept makes for a win-win situation as it gives people a chance to cut back on heavy fare while also moving about freely and bonding over the food. Today, you also have such a cool variety of these boards - from cheese and charcuterie to Lebanese, dessert platters and even one for kids! We got wedding catering experts who make these grazing tables to dish the deets on its success. Go on, graze away! If there is a chance for interactivity via food at a wedding, this is it! Manpreet Dhody, Founder and Chef of the gourmet catering and gifting studio I’M Wholesome India, affirms and shares how the trend makes for a complete experience that people want to savour.“Grazing platters have become so popular of late, that we do 30-40 of these every day of which about 15-20% of these are for wedding celebrations and parties alone. The concept offers an amalgamation of so many good things and as guests wander around the table, they discover and enjoy each of the items, which also adds up to being a like a conversation-starter.” Chef Nitin Monga of Kiki’s Restaurant, Alibaug who gets busy whipping up these charcuterie or cheese boards in the wedding and party season, also vouches for their rising popularity. He says,“These are a big trend in dining and entertaining and revolve around the artful arrangement of a variety of foods on a platter or board, often including cheeses, cured meats, fruits, nuts, and other snacks. They’re definitely changing things on the scene and their popularity can be attributed to several factors: visual appeal, versatility, fostering a sharing culture, being Instagrammable and providing healthconscious choices.” The ingredients on the platter are diverse to meet taste preferences of clients and they’re fast-becoming mainstream. “Typically, we prepare about 50 grazing boards and tables with a selection of handcrafted cheeses and dips every month per event,” he informs. Local to imported fare: As exotic as it gets The platters are a mind-blowing selection of everything that’s delectable yet healthy. Don’t be surprised if you whip your phone out and start clicking away when you stand next to a platter as its almost akin to art. Manpreet shares the formula to creating it and explains, “Almost everything that’s carefully curated in mini, bitesized portions can go onto grazing platters. You have charcuterie and mature cheeses, ingredients that vary BY ISMAT TAHSEEN Grazing platters take over the wedding tablescape! Rich catering food is being taken over by wedding grazing tables Grazing tables by I’M Wholesome (Manpreet Dhody) 42|LUXEBOOK|OCTOBER 2023 OCTOBER 2023 |LUXEBOOK|43 FOODGASM