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How to plan Appetisers for your special event with Blue Strawberry

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Planning a dinner party can be a very daunting task for the most of us. Blue Strawberry (one of Durban’s leading catering companies) took some time out to share a few unique ideas on how to WOW your guests… now, if only my starters could look like the Oyster slingbacks with a vodka Dash featured above!

Before A Meal: 

When you plan to offer appetisers with a full meal to follow, 3-4 items of these pre-dinner treats per person should be sufficient. You can offer all hot, all cold or a combination of the two and, they should complement the meal that’s to follow.

As A Meal:  

This is becoming more and more popular because it offers a great way for guests to mix and mingle- especially if you are hosting a cocktail function. The length of the party, time of day and what you decide to offer will all determine the “how much do I need?” question typically asked. 

As Food Stations:

Food Stations are becoming the rage for special events. Any of these appetizers, party trays and even some traditional banquet menus can be presented as Food Stations. A Food Station is really named as the menu item where guests have the ability to create their own meal.

An idea for something out of the ordinary could be a Mashed Potato Martini Bar.  This particular food station is a fun, jazzy and interactive way to have mashed potatoes as part of the catered function. 

Guests select mashed potatoes (or flavor of potatoes depending on how many types are offered) place in a martini glass and then sprinkle toppings of their choice, such as bacon crumbles, grated cheese, fresh chopped chives and other similar potato toppers. Toppers can be typical or extraordinary and depend on what you, the host, want to offer.

Some stations are manned with professional staff like a risotto station, sushi station, pasta station and there are even dessert stations.

So, if Food Stations are what you want, just give Blue Strawberry a call and ask us to create your Food Station menu.

 

Passed Appetizers: 

This popular trend involves professional wait staff moving around the room whilst serving platters of individual appetizers that guests can simply take directly from the tray and eat. Simple one-bite items are a must for this kind of appetizer, as guests tend to be mingling and walking around with a beverage in one hand and do not have eating utensils readily available. Food “shots” and tasting spoons, forks or other small serving utensils are used to present these more dressy appetizers. 

A great time to offer Passed Appetizers are at cocktail parties and wedding receptions on the guest’s arrival and before the main event begins.

Other Considerations: 

Cocktail parties and the type of alcohol being served can also influence the amount of food that should be available to your guests. The more alcohol you have, the more food you should plan to serve.

 We have the experience to deal with any catering desire, so contact us at Blue Strawberry on 031 579 1463 or visit www.bluestrawberry.co.za and allow us to assist you with your next function.

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Art

I heart Market – February Sale Market Saturday 3 February: 9am – 2pm

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February is the month of love and the I heart Market will celebrate with its traditional bi-annual “sale” market on Saturday 3 February from 9am to 2pm at  Northlands Primary School, in Durban North.

Following two busy and packed festive season markets in its new home at Northlands Primary School, which was well received by customers, February’s I heart Market will offer a range of discounted products.

“We were over the moon with the turn for our first markets at Northlands Primary, with a steady stream of customers, and great sales for our traders who are all small business entrepreneurs,” enthuses Manager of the Market, Tanith Molliere. “Our February market is kind of the “January Sales” market with great offers to help those budgets that may have been stretched during the holidays.”

February’s Market promises a magical shopping experience with wares created with love and care by local artisans and small businesses, reflecting a deep commitment to their artistry and craft.  With Valentine’s Day just around the corner – there will also be a gorgeous array of “romantically-inspired” products available.

As always, the market is filled with handmade treasures ranging from fine leather goods, unusual ceramics, exquisite jewellery and accessories, innovative visual art, home decor, plants, clothing, condiments and pickles, cured meats, a delightful selection of delicious baked goods. Of course, the usual mouth-watering array of food truck eats, catering to every palate including vegan and vegetarian.

There is also a secure play area for children between the ages of 1 and 6, with qualified Teacher’s Assistants in attendance available for the morning for those parents who want to take a break to shop or enjoy some delicious food. There is a fee of R100 for the morning or part thereof. A “pram park” is also available for people to leave their prams whilst shopping to help avoid congestion in the hall.

The market is housed in the school hall and surrounding gardens from 9am to 2pm, and takes place rain or shine as most of the traders are under cover.  Parking is available in designated school areas, with security guards to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.

For more info contact info@iheartmkt.com.

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Businesses

PROBAC Biologicals: Revolutionizing Cleaning in Durban with Eco-Friendly Innovation

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Durban, a city known for its vibrant culture and diverse community, is also becoming a hub for sustainable living. Leading this green revolution is PROBAC Biologicals, a proudly Durbanite and South African brand at the forefront of eco-friendly cleaning solutions.

PROBAC’s unique technology utilises ‘beneficial bacteria’ to biodegrade dirt, fundamentally transforming how they approach cleanliness. This innovative method not only ensures effective cleaning but also safeguards our environment by preventing chemical and dirt transfer.

What sets PROBAC apart is its commitment to long-lasting cleanliness and odour control at a microscopic level. This is particularly beneficial for Durban’s bustling households and dynamic businesses, offering a practical solution for maintaining hygiene without constant attention.

The significance of PROBAC’s technology extends beyond just cleaning. It mirrors natural biodegradation processes, fostering healthy bio-stability in our spaces. In a city like Durban, where the community is increasingly conscious about their environmental impact, PROBAC’s products resonate deeply. They embody the essence of sustainability — a trait highly valued by Durbanites.

Probac Durbanite

 

PROBAC’s roots as a South African brand represents a local solution to a global challenge, aligning perfectly with Durban’s ethos of community-driven progress and environmental responsibility. By choosing PROBAC, Durbanites not only enjoy a cleaner living environment but also contribute to a larger movement of ecological preservation.

As Durban continues to thrive as a city that values both its cultural heritage and environmental sustainability, PROBAC Biologicals stands out as a beacon of innovation. Its eco-friendly approach to cleaning is not just a product choice; it’s a lifestyle choice that resonates with the heart of Durban.

Check out www.probac.co.za for more information and give them a follow on Instagram.
Available at Pick n Pay, Checkers and Spar country-wide.

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Attractions

Luxurious R1.3bn Oceans Mall Umhlanga ready to open

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The luxurious and much anticipated Oceans Mall, part of the R4.3 billion mixed-use Oceans Umhlanga Development, opens its doors to shoppers on Tuesday 15 November.

On Friday 11 November, His Majesty King Misuzulu Ka Zwelithini will make his first public appearance since his Coronation to officiate at the launch function of the mall.

The project has created 6,000 jobs during construction and 2,500 permanent jobs and is classified as a catalytic development by the City of Durban. The double award-winning, internationally acclaimed development has been recognised for its unique curvilinear architecture at the International Property Awards.
The 36,000sqm mall has attracted top national and international brands The mall boasts two large, state-of-the-art anchor tenants – Woolworths and Checkers. Over 97% of the mall’s 120 stores are let and are filled with both well-known national and sought-after international brands to satisfy the most discerning of shoppers.

The world-class, first for South Africa, flagship Checkers FreshX will offer customers exclusive private label brands such as Forage & Feast – a premium private label endorsed by South Africa’s first Michelin star chef, Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen – and Simple Truth. It also has a Meat Market with free range chicken and restaurant-quality steak, a Kauai store, a sushi bar, and a Foreign Ground coffee shop.

“The luxurious Checkers is designed in such a way that the various departments look and feel like specialist stores within a store,” says co-developer Vivian Reddy.
Trendy restaurants and family franchises Oceans Mall also offers mouth-watering restaurants such as the trendy Tiger’s Milk, renowned Signature Restaurant, Black, long established Olive & Oil, plus local franchise favourites such as Spur and Hussar Grill. “We have gone to town with opulent decor matched by a decadent menu,” says Black directors Andrey and Joelene. “We know that Black is destined to impress the senses, and we are catering for everyone including a special VIP section.”

High-end Platinum Walk fashion section to launch in March 2023 International fashion-brands – a first for KZN – will launch in the next phase of the mall opening in March 2023. The luxury Platinum Walk of Oceans Mall will feature premium international fashion brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, Burberry and Versace, and 8 others in the high-end section similar to the popular “Diamond Walk “of Sandton City.

Umhlanga is known as the playground of the North Coast and Oceans Mall is positioned as the most aspirational mall in KZN, destined to attract both locals and tourists who flock to the area. The high-end mall will have a positive impact on both the local and regional economy with its job creation and major financial contribution to the city coffers in terms of rates and utilities.

Transforming the north of Durban Offering a new and exciting shopping experience, the mall is designed to cater for all walks of life and will transform the lifestyle of the entire northern region with a unique KZN mall experience.

“Oceans Mall is distinctive and geared for all tastes, including the sophisticated and affluent shopper,” says Reddy. “It’s a world-class offering that is positioned amongst the top three exclusive malls in the country.”

 

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