AJAR.id – Hello Ajarian! The buffet menu style is commonly found in most hotels and all-you-can-eat restaurants. Serving buffet menu is simpler than a full-course menu, as customers can serve themselves and choose the dishes they desire. But, be mindful about how much food you display on a buffet table. There should be an appropriate calculation about the quantities and food costs of the buffet.
The chef must be careful to avoid two common mistakes, which are:
- To prepare excessive quantities of food for the occasion.
- To prepare more varieties of dishes than it is practical to present.
Buffet portions can be as small as 40% of the size of a normal main course. The maximum portion size should be half the size of an a la carte main course. Buffet portions should be small enough to allow the guest to sample a range of items. The following are some portion control strategies:
- Get staff to serve the food so every customer receives an equal amount of the dish.
- Serve the entrée to the table instead of displaying on buffet tables.
- Use the appropriate size service utensils that indicate the correct portion size.
- Don’t display too much food, set a certain amount for food to be displayed.
- Pre-plate high cost items so that the guest will only take one plate. For example, plating can be used for expensive items so customers do not load up their plate with items like lobster and leave nothing for others.
Buffets menus are normally presented to the customers with a price per person and all the dishes are included. The chef needs to be prepared with a variety of dishes that fit within a price structure. This is all part of the professional management skills that cooks need to adopt to manage their kitchen costs. What the chef needs is an up-to-date costing structure of ingredients for dishes that are being used.
Read also: The Buffet Menu Styles
Nurturing You to Grow®
Written by: Alan Hickman, Garry Blackburn
Subject Matter: Plan, Prepare and Display Buffet Service