CHAFING-DISH SUPPERS. THE TABLE EQUIPMENT. LIST OF FOODSTUFFS FOR CHAFING-DISH COOKERY
FOR the chafing-dish supper lay the bare table with either luncheon cloth or luncheon set, flowers, and candles. Mark the covers with the plate doilies ; place a plate on each doily, and the necessary silver according to directions ; the water glass and ginger ale or beer glass on small doily at right, and the napkin at left.
If the party is for many persons, provide two chafing- dishes, one at each end of the table. This not only affords quicker and better service but adds to sociability. Always have a metal tray under the chafing-dish as a protection against fire and stains, and an asbestos mat under the tray.
Have measured for the dish to be cooked all liquid and dry ingredients and seasonings, so that the work may be simplified, and the time of preparation at the table shortened. The butter should be measured beforehand and made into balls, each containing a level tablespoonful.
Select attractive as well as convenient dishes to hold the accessories. Small wooden Russian bowls which do not break are noiseless and ornamental. Bowls of the Paul Revere pottery and some of the rice-pattern Chinese bowls are pleasing. Pitchers holding from half a cup to a pint are necessary. It is a good plan to arrange upon a single tray the bowls, pitchers, and small dishes containing all ingredients for one dish. This may be conveniently placed at the left of the person presiding over the chafing-dish.
Some things are cooked in the blazer or top pan, directly over the flame. Egg dishes and all creamed dishes need the hot-water pan beneath, and of course the hot-water pan is necessary to keep the food warm. Have at hand a tile on which to place the hot-water pan when not in use. Be sure that not too much water is in the pan; about one inch in depth is sufficient ; also watch that the water does not boil away, leaving the pan dry
The chafing-dish supper is always an informal occasion, and the guests may serve themselves if they prefer.
There are many kinds of rarebits varied by the principal flavor, as tomato, onion, green or red pepper, etc. Any of the souffles, either cheese or sweet souffles, are successfully made in the chafing-dish. Fudges (made with peanut butter, marshmallows, sultana raisins, nuts, and Canton ginger) are popular chafing-dish possibilities.
Slices of bread cut in any chosen shape and toasted, or heated crackers, are an understood part of the chafing-dish supper. Creamed dishes require toast, while rarebits call for either crackers or toast. Beverages always accompany a chafing-dish supper. Among the most popular are ale, beer, cider, mineral water, wine "cup", punch, and hot coffee.