My one main contribution to the wedding Sara spoke of in yesterday’s post is an Italian Cookie Table. For those unfamiliar, a massive plate of dozens and dozens of different cookies and pastries are piled up on a table and guests are encouraged to walk up, take what they want, then fill a bag to take home. The tradition was started by Italian folks in Pennsylvania (where my mom’s from) so it’ll be a nice little nod to my heritage and an introduction of Sara’s family to mine.
I’ve liked the idea ever since I was a little kid. Not that I don’t like cake, but what if the cake is gross? Everyone’s stuck eating gross cake. With a cookie table, a wide variety of tastes can be accommodated and there’s a pretty good chance at least one of the available options will agree with every guest. Additionally, wedding cakes look amazing before anyone gets to enjoy it. You take something beautiful then stab it repeatedly and consume the insides…not exactly the perfect metaphor for a marriage. A massive pile of cookies still looks like a massive pile of cookies after the first and second pass by all the guests.
Second: because of its nature, a cookie table becomes a dessert of engagement. We’ll have about 60 people there, but only one of the cookies has enough quantity for everyone to have one. That means if someone at your table picked up a chocolate pepper cookie and they’ve all been spoken for you’ll have to bargain and negotiate a piece of your almond meringue for a piece of theirs. The cookies are all at least two bites, meaning that if you want to taste everything, you’ll have to talk your way into it (or bribe the groom—cash only please).
Third: it gave me a chance to try out half a dozen different recipes that I’d never even thought of. Sara’s mom made three of them, and I’ve picked up the rest. All of them were baked and prepared by hand; every almond or date or fig chopped from whole, every dough combined, kneaded and piped personally. There’s a significant investment of time and love that went into them (and anyone who’s ever eaten in an Italian home knows that love is the secret ingredient).
Every bite is a gift from us to our friends and family and with any luck everyone will walk away happy.
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