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In any food business, plating presentations and table settings – aside from good food – matter greatly. This is especially important if you’re a hotel chef. A dish that looks appetising makes a good impression on your guests before they even take a bite. Dips complement a dish's flavour and, with a little creative presentation, can also be used to enhance plating. Follow these tips on how to think beyond the bowl when presenting dips and sauces for any occasion.

Use food as an edible container

Use food as an edible container

One great idea is to take an ingredient from the main dish and turn it into a dip container that guests can eat afterwards. A piece of sturdy, hollowed out round bread can be used as a bowl to hold thick and creamy dips like mayonnaise. You can also use it to hold a spinach or cheese dip to add some rustic elegance to your dinner parties. Transform red and green bell peppers into festive dip bowls for your Christmas spread or, with a little more effort, you can create jack-o-lantern dip bowls using different kinds of squash.

 Serve a variety of dips creatively

Serve a variety of dips creatively

Does the occasion call for a formal feel? Serve individually-plated appetisers of dip and dippers in clear-coloured shot glasses or Chinese soup spoons. The different colours and textures will make your dish look extremely appealing.

Turn the dip from side to star

Turn the dip from side to star

When a dip looks fantastic on its own, it deserves the spotlight. Choose a large and appropriately-themed serving dish and put strategically-placed garnishes around the rim or the bowl so that once guests start getting their helpings, the dip still looks presentable.

Match the tableware to the theme

Match the tableware to the theme

Using holiday-appropriate bowls and glasses is a creative way to add a thematic element to even the plainest tablescape. When thinking of the décor, choose familiar festive icons and symbols that you can use as inspirations for your tableware, and that also match the overall hotel theme. 

  • Christmas & New Year – Cocktail glasses, goblets, and big mugs will bring out the holiday spirit to your dips and sauces.
  • Baptisms & baby showers – Baking supplies like muffin cups and heart-shaped cookie cutters on saucers can make your celebration even more fun.
  • Summer parties – To complement your sunny theme, try making bowls by carving out pineapples or using small stainless steel pails to hold dips.
  • Barbecues or game day – Mini iron skillets and casseroles are perfect for big barbecues or game day parties. 

If a holiday is regularly celebrated, you might also want to consider investing in more elaborate trays and dishes that you can use year after year.  

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