Ideas for a western-themed banquet are easy to round up when you consider the wide array of Old West and modern Western-style foods and decorations. Your Western-themed banquet can be as elegant as an Old West hotel's banquet hall or as rustic as a chuck wagon meal by the campfire.
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Decorations for the Banquet
f the banquet is to be more on the elegant end of Western, consider decorations such as hurricane lamps and burgundy, red or white linens. For a more rustic banquet, choose gingham tablecloths or plain white tablecloths with bandannas for napkins.
Decorate the buffet table with items such as horse tack and lassos, faux gold nuggets and bouquets of daisies in cowboy style coffee pots or boots. Stand life-size cut outs of Western movie characters or Western icons, such as Saguaro cactus, next to the table. As with the rest of the banquet room, decorate the buffet table to coordinate with the overall style and tone of the banquet.
The headliner at a Western-themed banquet is usually meat. Consider authentic Old West entrées -- such as barbecued ribs, barbecue or fried chicken, roast and baked country ham. Tri-tip steak, burgundy beef and beef stroganoff are other Western-style favourites. Vegetarians may enjoy macaroni and cheese (another authentic Old West dish) and vegans may appreciate meatless chilli with soy cheese.
Appetizers and Side Dishes
Ideas for Western-style appetizers and side dishes include: salsa and tortilla chips, cheese garlic, sourdough toast, slow cooked barbecued beans, corn bread with real butter, pinto beans, corn on the cob, potato salad, coleslaw and green salad.
Dessert ideas for a Western-themed banquet range from authentic Old West treats to modern-day delights with a Western theme. Popular desserts with 19th-century pioneers and cowboys and still popular today include berry and peach pies and cobblers, apple pie and strawberry shortcakes (with sweet biscuits and real whipped cream or ice cream.
Other desserts ideas include: cake, cupcakes or cookies decorated with Western themes -- such as lassos, gold nuggets, horseshoes and cactus.
The nonalcoholic beverage menu at a Western-themed banquet often includes root bear as a sarsaparilla substitute. Other sodas were also popular in the Old West, but root beer is more iconic of this period. Apple cider and lemonade are also good choices for the same reason. If you are going to have a bar, some popular Western-themed drinks include the Wild Wild West Cocktail (bourbon, peach schnapps and cranberry juice). Taking a cue from the menus of fine dining establishments and saloons of the Old West, also consider whiskey, hard cider, brandy, ale, claret and Champagne. Garnish drinks with Western-themed swizzle sticks.
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