With friends’ gatherings firmly back in fashion, hosting a dinner can consume a lot of time and energy – from selecting a menu and spring-cleaning the house, to the piece de resistance, to creating the perfect dining table. And while flowers are traditional, if you’re fed up of peonies and bored of baby’s breath, then fruits and vegetables offer a stunning, and unexpected alternative.
It’s easy to transform your table into a scene reminiscent of a Dutch still-life painting by creating simple and stunning plates of seasonal fruits and vegetables. Not only are they more budget-friendly than flowers, but they’re also bang on trend thanks to the farm-to-table movement, which promotes serving fresh, local produce.
Two birds, one stone
What’s better than a centerpiece that serves two purposes? Artfully aligned crudités help create a beautiful table and double as tasteful hors d’oeuvres once guests are seated. In addition to being interactive, your multi-purpose centerpieces improve the flow of the entire evening, as you don’t need to get up and down, bringing new courses to the table. Guests can relax and just help themselves.
Use a mixture of small and large fruits and veggies to add interest and depth to your arrangements. If you’ve used a lot of large fruits, incorporate something smaller, like cascading grapes or berries as interesting fillers. In addition to size, consider shape and texture, to prevent centrepieces from looking too uniform.
Stay in season
Stick to fruits and vegetables that are in season to keep costs, and your dinner party’s carbon footprint, to a minimum. Plus, it’s always best to serve ripe fruits and veggies, as they symbolise abundance and fertility in many cultures. They also make delicious favours for guests to take home
To keep your centrepieces cohesive, select matching or complimentary serveware. After all, the use of fruit and veggies is more rustic than regal, so keep things streamlined and sleek with your plates and dishes.