January does not only begin a new year, it marks the time of year when football teams play for a chance to win the covenant title at one of many bowl games. Championship bowl games such as The Sugar, Cotton, Orange, Rose, and Sun are popular on the collegiate level. Soon after the collegiate competition is over, the winners of the professional American Football Conference and National Football conference meet head-on at the biggest sports game in the world, The Super Bowl which will take place next month in New Orleans.
With so many bowl games on our mind, it's the perfect time to talk about using entertainment bowls for our Design and Dine™. To score points and be a champion with your entertainment, you should have to have an array of bowls in your inventory.
Bowls vary in shape, size, color and material and not only have a functional purpose but they also enhance your décor, express your personality and add a playful touch to your table design. The divisions in your bowl collection are:
- Decorative and Accent Bowls – Most often used for styling and generally made of pottery, ceramic or clay. These are great for serving salads and creating center pieces.
- Stationary Bowl – Most likely to be permanently displayed in your home and generally made of crystal and glass. These are great for whole fruits, punch, sugar and candy.
- Service ware - Most like to be presented to your guests for their personal use and generally made of China or ceramic. These are great for hot entrée's and cooking.
- Kitchen – Most often used for food storage and transportation and generally made of plastic, foil or paper. These are great for to-go items and not recommended for serving.
Because the bowl games fall during the winter months, I tend to prepare and serve a lot of warm hearty gourmet meals like my famous piping hot turkey chili, chowder, bouillabaisse, bisque, gumbo and kale salad in gorgeous bowls during this season. These dishes are usually served with a number of garnishes in which I use small complementary decorative garnish bowls that allow each guest to customize their serving. When serving dishes like gumbo or bouillabaisse, it's a good idea to provide your guests with a plain unadorned bowl on the table to collect discarded shells and bones. On the other hand, bowls are used year round for salads, Jell-O and slaw.
Form and Function
There are many rules in the world of football but in the world of design and dine – almost anything goes. The material a bowl is made of is the first indication of how it can be used. Keep these things in mind:
- Glass bowls are great for serving cold food but only tempered glass can be used for both hot and cold items.
- Wooden bowls are always for cold food and best used for salads.
- Certain decorative bowls are best used for show.
- Although many have dared to be different, stainless steel is best used for preparing food.
The only true rule you need to remember is plastic and foil containers are for storing, preserving and transporting food and should never been confused as decorative items. Keep them in the kitchen!
Shape, Size and Color
When you are deciding on the shape of your bowl, consider the shape of your table. Using a round bowl on a round table creates a mono-design. To break-up a mono-design, simply use bowls that have odd geometric and asymmetrical shapes.
Not only will you find plenty of colors for your bowls, you will find many patterns which can be really helpful when creating your table design. I enjoy using bowls with a solid color on the inside and pattern or design on the outside. Not only does this give to the design for your table, I find that food looks better on a solid color. If you want to increase the presence of your bowl, simply place a mirror below the bowl, which will magnify the outer design of your bowl.
As you prepare to host this bowl season, whether it be a college bowl or the Super Bowl, keep in mind you have a great opportunity to show off your best and brightest bowl in your entertainment collection. Having a range of bowls will help make the transition from your formal entertainment to a casual get together easy.