Right now I'm doing some planning for a couple of events. My oldest son is getting married in July. Both he and fiance are gluten free. (She went gluten free after meeting him and got her Grave's disease to go into remission!) So now I am excitedly planning both a shower menu and a rehearsal dinner cookout menu. The wedding it out of state and the shower is local. Both the rehearsal dinner and the shower will probably be upwards of 50 people in attendance. I'm serving a full meal, of course, at the rehearsal dinner but for the shower, I'm going to go with finger foods and snacks. Being gluten free makes everything a bit more complicated, especially if you are trying to stay on a budget.
For the shower, I'm going with a theme of dip, apparently, I'm doing fruit and dip, veggies and dip, gluten free crackers with a cheese ball, punch and other drinks and cake; which my cousin is going to make from gluten free mixes that I purchased at the salvage grocery store. We eat these all the time and they are yummy, no concerns about quality. They are King Arthur brand. By buying these at the salvage store, I've saved about 4 dollars a box on them. My cousin will do the icing. She is good at this and she actually did my wedding cakes 28 years ago.
For the rehearsal dinner, it's more complicated. We'll be 4 hours away from home in a state park and outside in a pavilion. We couldn't afford to get a room in the lodge because we'd have to pay for catering. Fortunately, the bride and groom are very easy going and even suggested a cookout. So we're going to order these hamburger buns Rotella and grill out burgers. For side dishes I was kind of stumped. I'm going to be staying in a cabin with a kitchen, but I don't know how much cooking I can do there. It looks small on the web site and besides, I don't want to spend the entire day cooking. I want to do vacation-y things. Also, I am afraid that things like potato salad will get too warm and be dangerous. So I called and asked and the pavilion does have electricity so that I can plug in crock pots. I'm going to have crock pots full of baked beans, green beans and corn on the cob with watermelon slices and some of my special oatmeal cookies that I'm famous for, for dessert. To feed a crowd like this, I'll probably have to borrow crock pots from several of my friends. :-)
I'll probably bring potato chips to both, just in case we need to stretch the food a bit. I need to find amounts of food to make for each and will utilize web sites like this one: Cook Like a Caterer and this one: Chef Menus Quantity Chart
I think it's going to be fun!