How to Buffet Like a Pro

8:23 AM

The buffet craze is among us.

With the rise of huge buffets, smorgasbords have apparently become a social thing. These dens almost always promise a lot of overeating.

I've heard a lot of people say that it's just not worth for them to go to these eat-all-you-can affairs as they don't eat much.

But how do you make the most out of your buffet ticket?

There's always the rule of thumb of going for the pricier items in the list like cheeses, nuts, seafood, prime beef cuts--but what else can you do to add more value in that expensive binge?

Arrive early

Getting in the venue as an early bird has its perks; the food is piping hot and freshly prepared. You also get dibs on the dishes that you prefer. I usually head for the cheese section and stuff my face with cheeses, grapes, and walnuts. Some buffets only refill certain sections once.

Do not go too hungry.

Yes. You heard me. We have something called "takaw tingin" or "takaw mata" (I refuse to try to translate that in English). Having a small yogurt before the big event will help you make better choices, and have the energy to elbow the older man trying to hog all the walnuts.

Do a once around. 

See what your options are. Have a rough idea of the selection so you know your order of priorities. Mine's usually, cheese first, carving station, the appetizer section, sashimi, other savory dishes, and desserts until I keel over. 

Easy on the carbs.

Yes, that also means bread, pasta, and other starchy stuff.  You want more protein, more of the good stuff. All that starch will make you full faster.

Slow down on the sushi.

I know you may think this is the bang for your buck, but that's a lot of rice-unless it's an all-sushi buffet. Go for more sashimi and tempura.

Ixnay on the soda and fruit juices

Too much sugar will make you bloat and feel full faster. You wanted to eat more right? Stick to water.

Do not put all your viands in one plate

Savor it, don't let the sauces mix, what's the point of eating in great quantities if they all taste the same weird mixed sauce flavor. It's gross, just don't do it. There's a reason there are so many plates for your use. Also, if you have more plates on the table, you can easily dispose of leftovers by putting small amounts on each plate. 

Eat slowly

You know how disgusting it was for the Capitol to waste food while the districts starved? Eating fast only to barf it out later is an insult to people who don't have enough to eat and the chef who intricately prepared your food. Food is meant to be relished, slow down and let yourself taste the food.

Take hot tea while you digest or try not
to burst

The hot tea (or just hot water) will help ease some of the bloating, making more space for more chow.
If you came early, you have the luxury to rest and have seconds or thirds, or fourths while sipping tea with your pinkie raised(you glutton!)

Pick your shots

Stop telling yourself you need to get a better bang for your buck.
That buffet franchise you're dining in IS making money. And if you can afford that 500php+-, you should know that the best way to make the most out of it is to eat what you really want, and not just stuff your face with everything you see. I will binge on cheeses, beef, and fresh fruits but not on seafood because I'm allergic.

It also pays to know that some buffets are just not worth it.
I'm still working on that list without getting a heart attack.

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