May 27, 2010
Planning a wedding is both exciting and labor-intensive, so when something “non-traditional” is thrown into the mix, it becomes that much more complicated and somewhat challenging. In recent years, it has become popular for couples to create a wedding celebration which more accurately reflects their way of thinking and living … and so, “vegetarian weddings” have begun to come into their own.
The process of planning a vegetarian wedding is much the same as planning any other kind of wedding, except that the choices are fewer and the legwork may be greater.
First you will need to address the emotional issue of dealing with family members. There is no doubt that your family will want to avoid offending guests who may expect meat at the wedding reception – especially anyone who is financially contributing to the event. The key words here are conversation and understanding. The couple will need to discuss their beliefs with their families, in the hope that the people closest to them will understand, respect and support their wishes. One good way to mitigate the problem is to offer familiar foods on the wedding menu that just happen to be vegetarian. Items such as breads, pasta bars, vegetable trays, sweets, cheeses, soups, salads and potatoes are all familiar and will help make guests comfortable with the food choices.
It is a good idea to let guests know in advance, that the wedding reception will be vegetarian. There are a few ways to do that. The least formal is to have key family and members of the wedding party casually mention the fact to those with whom they have contact. A more formal option is to include special wording on the wedding invitation, such as “Vegetarian reception to follow”, or give guests a choice of vegetarian meals to return with their response card.
Next comes the choice of a caterer. It will be easy to find a caterer to accommodate a vegetarian wedding, but it may require a bit more of an effort to find one who can suggest a varied and interesting menu. There are many delicious ways to cater the affair as an elegant sit-down dinner or as a more casual buffet. Whatever your choice, meet with your caterer, make suggestions and even provide him or her with recipes.
There are also several alternatives to hiring a caterer to create the vegetarian wedding menu. Booking a vegetarian restaurant to cater and host the wedding reception is one option.
There is also the do-it-yourself alternative. Although this may save money, it’s an ambitious, time-consuming and labor-intensive choice – one that you might not want to consider on your wedding day!
The extra time and effort in planning your “green wedding” will pay off in the end. What a pleasant surprise it will be to many of your guests when they realize that they have experienced and enjoyed a vegetarian wedding!
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