Planning an intercultural wedding is a beautiful opportunity for both families of the marriage party to come together as one in the union of your marriage. This is particularly more pertinent for interracial couples. With diverse backgrounds and different customs and traditions, it can be a wonderful time for each family to learn more about the other’s culture. |
Many intercultural couples are planning weddings that allow them to celebrate their own traditions that reflect their heritage and way of living. However it can be difficult to combine two cultures that are very different, especially in terms of food preferences and restrictions. Many cultures and religions have different dietary requirements and a marriage between two cultures can make it a challenge to cater to everyone’s preferences.
Whether your family are strictly vegetarian, and his are avid meat eaters, we’ll show you how to tackle this challenge with and explore the different options you can consider when it comes to tailoring your menu, so that all your guests will have something they’ll be able to enjoy on your menu. We’ve also gathered some feedback from our readers and real brides to be so they can share their catering ideas with you!
Who wants what?
Firstly its important to find out what each family want on the menu, whether they need a halal option a vegan one, or even some traditional dishes from their respective cultures. Once you get a general idea of what each side of the family want, you can go about planning your menu, by including some of your own preferences and deciding on how to combine all these dishes together.
Next its important to find a caterer that is able to provide you with the dishes and fulfil the dietary requirements that you need to create your bespoke menu. So get researching! There are plenty of caterers that specialise in more than one cuisine, and plenty that are happy to combine different cuisines for you and suggest ides in order to create the ultimate cross-cultural menu.
When it comes to serving your food you’ll need to consider this option carefully. Some cultures are sensitive about the presence of certain types of food near their own (veg and non veg being the most common conflict) so you’ll need to take careful consideration of your families and other guests wishes. Below we’ve listed some ideas of how you can combine and serve up a feast at your inter-cultural wedding.
Menu options and Readers suggestions!
Having a compromised menu – Creating dishes that incorporate both cuisines or that each side of the family will be able to tolerate is a safe and easy option to go for. Of course this will require a lot of sample tasting from both sides of the family to make sure that the dishes suit everyone’s palette. However it can be tricky to get the balance of flavours right when combining dishes together, and you’ll need to be careful that you don’t incur any extra charges. If it proves challenging to make both cuisines to exist together on one menu, you might want to consider other options.
Having a vegetarian option- It might be worth having more than one option for your main course so that guests can choose what they would prefer. For example one can be a meat dish, and the other a vegetarian. You can play with this any way you like, but having more than one option ensures that there is something that most people will like and can actually eat, which is exactly what newlywed Neelam did for her wedding!
‘I recently got married in April to my husband. I’m Indian and a vegetarian and my husband is English and a meat eater. We had a sit down meal for 200 guests, which enabled us to have a 3 course vegetarian meal for the Asian guests and 3 courses for the meat eaters. ‘
Buffet Style – Having a buffet offers you a selection of different cuisines that reflect each heritage, whilst foods that need to be kept away from each other are separated. Guests will also be able to have the option of what they choose to eat. This is a cheaper and easier way to incorporate many dishes that truly capture both you and your fiancé’s heritage. Although Neelam opted to have a sit down meal during the day, during the evening she decided to mix up the food and serving style.
‘During the evening we decided to have a buffet that consisted of Asian vegetarian food and a Greek mezze platter. Everyone loved the combination and variety of food, it was delicious and I was so happy the way it all turned out.’
Mini mains and canapés - If you’re looking for a unique way of combining two cuisines. Why not try bride-to-be Hamina’s option.
‘We are an Anglo-Asian couple and this will be the theme of our food. I didn’t want to go for the usual buffet as it’s just not how I envisioned my wedding. After talking with our caterer we decided to go for a mix of canapés and mini main courses. That way our guests can choose according to their preference. I thought this was a nice and different way to serve up our food whilst combining both our cuisines.’
One dish at a time– If you don’t have a problem with needing to separate your cuisines, why not try bride-to-be Huan’s option. Er and her fiancé have opted to select each course as a specific cuisine that reflects Huan’s Chinese heritage and her fiancé’s English heritage.
‘We’re both avid meat eaters and love each othe’sr food. So we decided to alternate our cuisines with each course to mix up the menu a bit. For example, the starter will be Satay Chicken, Spring rolls and Sesame Prawn toast, authentic Chinese starters. The main however will be a traditional English Beef wellington and so on.’
Hopefully these suggestions will inspire you to come up with your own creative solutions to catering for the preferences of both families in an intercultural marriage. Your caterer will have a wealth of information and experience, so your best bet is to discuss in detail with your caterer of what you want so you can satisfy the culinary traditions of both families and create a wedding feast that is uniquely you!.
For more fantastic Asian Wedding advice and inspirations, log on to Your Dream Shaadi, UK’s Premier Online Asian Wedding Directory. A bride’s number one resource for Asian Weddings.
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