Entertaining Ideas
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Any tips on how to keep food cold outside?

I am having a graduation party for my sister at the end of June and am having the food outside- either in a screen tent or in the garage.  How can I keep dips and appetizer trays cold enough in the heat?  Also, does anyone know of anything that is out there for holding down tableclothes on card tables outside?
Annalise Born 7/2/10 Jacob Born 4/12/12

Re: Any tips on how to keep food cold outside?

  • Nestle smaller bowls of dip and plates into larger dishes with ice/dry ice in them.
  • my mom gave me a round metal dish that you put in the freezer (or oven) ahead of time. It is supposed to keep things hot/cold extra long.  She got it from Bed, Bath & Beyond I think.

    Use deep rectangle pans filled with ice, then nestle smaller bowls into it that contain fruit, dips, etc.

    rotate cold items from the fridge; don't put it all out at once. Have 2-3 bowls of dip in the fridge, for example.  this way something's always fresh & cold on the table.

    keep all your bowls in the freezer until you're ready to fill them.

  • Thanks for the advice girls!  I'll definately try that!
    Annalise Born 7/2/10 Jacob Born 4/12/12
  • For the table clothes- punch two holes next to the table leg, thread a ribbon through the holes and around the leg, tie in a pretty bow.  This will keep the table cloth down and it looks pretty.
  • party stores & $1 stores sell clips that you put on the table to keep the cloth in place.
  • I have a suggestion. I work in event planning and have seen a couple caterers do this. Purchase a hard plastic baby pool (you know, the blue ones with hard sides that ususally sell for $10-$15). Cover the pool with whatever type of water-resistant material you like. I have seen colored shower curtain liners and also nylon fabric from craft stores. Make sure you get enough to drape over the sides and tuck underneath the pool. Fill the pool with ice. Part of this is for the visual effect, so be sure to fill to the top. Nest your bowls and plates down into the ice. You can rest fresh flowers and decorative garnishes all around in the ice for effect. This really works well and is pretty if you have enough room on a table to do it. It tends to work best on a large, round table.
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