Whenever people gather together, they frequently bring along food. On most occasions, that food needs to be eaten either while hot or while cold. Cold chicken and dumpling soup, for example, would not top anyone's list of favorite meals. Chilled foods are even worse, because as they warm up they warm up provide a safe haven for harmful bacteria.

Unfortunately, events always seem to conspire to delay the serving time of a meal at a social event. Guests often arrive late, and meals are frequently delayed to accommodate late arrivals. Even when meals are served on time, they often have lost temperature in the process of traveling to the event.

Social events are frequently held at locations outside the home and away from kitchen appliances. Traveling hosts or hostesses can attempt to keep foods at the proper temperature through the use of insulated transportation bags. Even so, these bags have a limited effect-something that pizza delivery drivers know all too well. Insulated bags will certainly slow the cooling or warming of the food inside, but slowing the process is the limit of their abilities. Hot foods will cool and cold foods will warm.

If the food can be brought back to its original temperature upon arrival then the party may be salvaged. Many times, however, foods that have been cooked and then reheated are in less than prime condition. Chafing dishes provide a good solution to this quandary. They maintain the heated or chilled condition of food.

Chafing dishes for sale can be found either online or at many retail locations. Internet searches may give prospective buyers a good idea of pricing and availability, but it may be beneficial to examine a chafing dish in person. This will allow the buyer to determine whether or not the chafing than it is of sufficient size to meet the required need.

Chafing dishes are typically made from metal such as stainless steel. Stainless steel is durable and strong. It is the preferred metal in most culinary applications. However, one significant drawback is that a guest cannot see through metal. In order to see what is in a metal chafing than, a guest must remove the metal lid. Every time the lid is raised heat and moisture escape from the pan.

Glass chafing pans are a good compromise. They retain heat well, and have the added benefit of being transparent. Guests can see the contents of the pan with how having to remove the lid and release heat and moisture.

Although not part of the Princess House collection, glass chafing pans coordinate well with Princess House Crystal accessories. They are an attractive addition to a buffet a table, kitchen counter or picnic bench. Most glass chafing pans have a stainless steel lid; however, many can also be purchased with glass, chrome or silvered lids. They are constructed of tempered glass, which means that it will not break from temperature changes. Additionally, the glass is quite thick, making the pans very shock resistant.