I ADORE grazing tables. I’ve always been a girl who loved share plates, so a grazing table is the ultimate!
What could be better than creating a feast of delicious food, piled high, and wide?! Not only do they look amazing, grazing tables encourage guests to chat as they help themselves and are a great conversation starter.
This weekend, I created a gorgeous table for a close friend's 50th birthday party. There were 50 guests and I fuelled with inspiration and his wish for "lots of cheese", I created this feast for $450 shopping at Costco. The party started mid-afternoon and the catering fed the hungry adults late into the night. And we had leftovers.
I had never been to Costco in Sydney but my friend thought ewe should check it out seeing as we we were catering to a fair few people. We ended up doing two trips - one a couple of weeks out to check out what Costco had that I needed, and to buy the food that would last such as crackers, nuts, olives, and pretzels. Then I went back the day before the party to buy everything else. I was blown away by how much cheaper it is - a box of fresh figs was $5!! Near my house at a major supermarket we pay $2.50 EACH FIG!! So it was well worth the research - think about buying in bulk for a party as you’ll definitely save a tonne of money and make life easier for yourself.
As a mum on a budget, I wanted to share how I did it so you can create your own amazing and beautiful grazing table. It will wow your hungry guests and be Insta worthy, using our simple and effective tips to creating your very own masterpiece like a pro:
Work from the back of the table adding height using stands and layering, and work to the front of the table making that the lowest point of your spread. You need height to add structure and a feeling of decadence .I bought some cheap pantry racks from IKEA to use as my tallest stands (which in the photo's are the black stands the wraps are on).
Give your table some soul by using a mixture of materials with colour and texture. For my tables I use things I already have at home - chopping boards, cake stands, cheese boards, vases, glass domes, even a skull head! I also buy vintage plates from Vinnies and even use cookbooks as stands. Get creative!!
Add some nature
For this table, I stole some jasmine branches from my ex-husbands garden and wove them around the platters and had the leaves peeking out from underneath boards. You can use anything you have with greenery and flowers to add lushness to your table.
Choose a variety of textures when selecting food
Think about the kinds of food you enjoy, and are easy to eat with one hand. A grazing table is exactly that - grazing kind of foods. I bought two trays of pre-made wraps from Costco and added them, as there were some kids attending and it was just after lunch so some people may have needed something slightly more substantial.
Cheese was of course central (and everyone loves it!), creamy, hard, crumbly, blue and aged varieties, olives, sundried tomatoes, eggplant slices, gherkins, different types of cured meats, nuts, berries, dips, breadsticks cut up, twiggy sticks, crackers, quince pastes - the more variety, the better!
Don’t leave space
Layer and cover, and don’t leave any space. To create decadence, the table should be totally covered in a blanket of food. To make it easy for yourself, fill in any gaps with greenery, nuts, or flowers. I usually finish my tables with berries and grapes, as then I can fill in any gaps easily and with colour.
I’d LOVE to see your grazing table creations so please tag me in any pics you post to Instagram so I can check it out!