Christmas is in the air and the New Year is fast approaching. Normally, the holiday catering season would be in full swing. From family gatherings to workplace holiday parties and other festive occasions marking the end of the old and the beginning of the new, this season has normally been a boon for foodservice providers and for the catering industry. The advent of COVID-19, however, has put a damper on the festivities and a new spin on what is considered ‘normal.’ From social distancing protocols and limited guest numbers at live events to virtual gatherings where get-togethers take place online only, you may think a caterer’s job is a thing of the past.
There is good news on the menu, however, for professional catering companies, party organizers, and event planners! Due to the coronavirus, the takeout/ordering-in paradigm is now in full bloom. The public is starting to gather again, albeit in small groups, and they are willing to pay top dollar for their favorite catered holiday meals and desserts.
Continue reading Tips for Catering a Holiday Party During COVID
Attention restaurant owners: If you are looking the latest recipes to add to your menu, think casseroles! The quintessential oven-baked creation is making a comeback, and for good reason. Budget-friendly and family friendly, casseroles can be as rich or as simple as your customers’ palates desire. They are easy to prepare, nutritious, delicious, and are typically made from many of the staples you already have in your pantry. Think cost-effective ingredients such as pasta, rice, flour, canned or frozen vegetables, canned soup, beans, and a choice of meat, cheese, fish, or vegetarian options. Moreover, casseroles make plenty of servings and are easy to freeze and store.
Many Types of Casseroles
Here’s more good news for restaurateurs: With a trove of tried-and-true casserole recipes available, and with an endless variety of dishes your chefs can concoct on their own, it is no wonder the casserole has become the “go-to” dish for many restaurants these days. Continue reading Casseroles Making a Comeback on Restaurant Menus
Fruitcake season is here, and with it, a golden opportunity for your restaurant to feature far out fruitcakes and attract the masses of holiday consumers to your eatery. While no one knows exactly how the dense, candied, nutty, sweet, and booze-soaked dessert became associated with the Christmas tradition, the fact is that customers wait all year long to indulge in the traditional treat. At the same time, they are ready and eager to sink their teeth into new and updated recipe.
From Fruitcake Classics to Flavorful Twists
Typically eaten by the slice and popularly given away as holiday gifts, new flavorful twists on the age-old dessert include recipes for fruitcake cookies, bars, mini-bites, shortbread, and even fruitcake waffles and donuts! Decadent no matter how they are prepared, let’s learn more about the culinary science and art of making magnificent fruitcakes. To do so, take off your apron, take a load off your feet, and prepare to take a journey into the past as we indulge in some fascinating fruitcake history…
History of Fruitcakes Across the Ages
Did you know that the modern-day fruitcake has been making the global rounds for millennium? Food historians have determined that the placing of cake loaves on the tombs of loved ones was customary as far back as ancient Egypt, over 3,000 years ago (perhaps as nourishment for the afterlife). But it was not until ancient Roman times that the fruitcake became popular and really took off. Touted for its portability and long shelf life – and hence frequently brought to the battlefields by Roman soldiers – the first fruitcakes were made of a pomegranate-pine nut-barley mash that was molded into a ring-shaped dessert.
Similarly, during the Middle Ages, fruited breads were widespread among Crusaders travelling the world and featured the addition of preserved fruits, spices, and honey.
Continue reading Holiday Fruitcakes for Your Restaurant Menu
How French Cuisine Has Permeated More Than Our Palates
If the perfect pastry is what your customers are craving, you have come to the right place! In fact, if you work anywhere in foodservice, and especially if you own a bakery, patisserie, or café, the following guide on how to make the perfect pastry is your recipe for success.
At their essence, all pastries are doughs made from fat (usually butter), flour, and water (with the occasional egg). Remarkably, it is from these few simple ingredients that some of the globe’s most decadent and beloved desserts are born including pies, tarts, croissants, eclairs, strudels and more. Similarly, on the pastry menu, are favorite foods such as baguettes, quiches, meat and mince pies, (just in time for the holidays), souffles – and so on.
So, let’s set out to explore the wonderful world of pastry and learn the art of making crusts and crafting recipes that pamper the palate with their buttery flavor and crumbly, flaky texture. On the way we will sink our teeth into the different types of pastries, learn about the history of pastry dough, learn about less familiar pastry doughs and share some secret tricks of the trade…
Continue reading Your Guide to Working with Different Types of Pastry Dough