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There are many catering menus that may register as typical when it comes to finding the right food combinations for a special event. Partygoers and event attendees are accustomed to eating chicken, fruit, meat sticks, cheese dips, skewered vegetables, wraps and rolls, meatballs and sandwiches. This standard menu fare is versatile for many different kinds of functions.

There are, however other catering services in Los Angeles that dare to step outside of the norm. Anoush Catering, for example, chooses to serve Mediterranean fare. There are also event planners and organizers who have good reason to add some variety to their menus.

One of the main reasons for selecting foods that are beyond traditional American cuisines is to accommodate the diversity of ethnic groups, regional palates or international appetites that may be present. It is also a good idea to consider attendees’ religious preferences, vegetarian status, food allergies and other health concerns when planning a menu. While it is not possible to cater to every single need of every single person in attendance, it is possible to cast a wide net and include as much variety as possible.

When selecting an international menu, it is also important to understand that in some areas of the world, food is more than merely the substances that are fed to the body. It is a form of community, and there are age-old practices that accompany meals. Some cultures, for example, would not ever use a knife to cut bread. They would also not place it on a bread plate with a pat of butter. Instead, bread is placed on the table as an entire loaf and those gathered at the table break it with their hands. Using a knife or any other utensil is considered rude.

Although it is not usually a strict requirement that all food customs be followed to the letter, it is good form to know the significance of certain rituals from other cultures. It is an immediate sign of respect, a way to celebrate difference. Knowing different food customs is always a way to help people bond over food.

In any given eating scenario, there will be laughter, good conversation and some curiosity over the basic preparation of dishes. The dining experience will only be heightened when there is an equal curiosity about the origin of food customs. Strangers who might not ordinarily have anything in common can share a common affection for food.


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