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Meat Portions for Parties

Meat Portions for Parties
Whether it is casual or elegant, a buffet simplifies entertaining a houseful of guests. The culinary centerpiece is usually the meat you will serveand most often a selection of several. To assist you in estimating the amounts needed, we turned to two nationally known caterers, Paula LeDuc and Mary Micucci. Both speak from the experience of feeding hundreds as easily as dozens several times a week.

Micucci offers this advice for a full-course buffet: "When determining meat quantities, heres my good rule of thumb. If you are serving one kind of meat, order 8 to 10 oz. of raw meat per person, or 6 to 8 oz. of fish or chicken. If you are serving two kinds, figure on 5 oz. of each per person."

For the buffet table at a cocktail party, LeDuc says, "We allow 2 oz. of smoked salmon per person if other proteins are offered on the table, or 4 oz. per person if salmon is the main course. When we serve hot slices of roast beef or turkey, 3 to 4 oz. per person is appropriate. And for any hors d'oeuvres that will be passed, I calculate the quantities needed in terms of bites, with 5 to 7 bites per person per hour."