Cook With Me's Blog

Eat Fresh!

Let’s talk about your catered food experience!

When Scott and I started “Hats Off” we were full of enthusiasm about cooking our dishes because so many restaurants where we dined were so average. The more we investigated about restaurants (specifically franchises) we found out why the restaurant cuisine was rather average.

  • – Some of your favorite restaurants are serving pre-frozen, warmed up food. With the exception of some steak houses this is true with many restaurants where you’re paying top dollar. Think about it. If a restaurant has about 35-45 different items offer on their menu, can all those ingredients really be fresh and served before they go bad? One or two slow nights would be financially devastating. No wonder your lasagna order was cold, it was frozen 15 minutes before you got it.
    • o Here is a test you can do to see if your restaurant is using pre-frozen meals. Ask for an ingredient to be switched or left out. They will give an excuse like it would back up the kitchen or some nonsense like that.
  • – Now lets talk about things like proteins and it’s freshness. Take chicken for instant. One reason why restaurants probably serve boneless skinless chicken is because if the bone were left in you could tell it had been frozen because the bone would be dark. I must stress that there isn’t anything wrong with the chicken; I’m just talking about fresh foods versus frozen food in restaurants.

Now when you have a catered event, there should a difference, right? Unfortunately, in many cases, there isn’t. Many of the caterers use frozen products. Scott and I learned early on that this was unacceptable to our vision.

Just so you know Hats Off Dining Catering actually prepares 85% – 90% from scratch. The 10% of pre-made items are things like sausages, bread, mayonnaise, etc. In the market I’m in most customers can’t afford to pay for the man-hours it would take to produce these items on a large scale. I reserve making these items for smaller more intimate dinner parties and personal chef services. This is where I find these little details are really appreciated.

What this mean for you is the freshest ingredients. I’m shopping for your menu the day before your event. I’m prepping your food the night before and cooking the day of your event. This includes entrees’ and side dishes. I created every recipe to be special. Clients who have taken my cooking class know this first hand.

So please inquire about whether or not your caterer is using pre-packaged frozen food for your special event. If you’re comfortable with that, fine. If not, give Hats Off To Dining Catering a call, 978-50FRESH, 978=503-7374.


February 1, 2016 Posted by | Let's Talk About Food | Leave a comment