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At Garden of Eating, we are dedicated to providing all of our clients with fresh, flavorful meals, beautifully and professionally presented for every event we cater. We pride ourselves in listening to our clients’ specific requests and designing a menu that reflects their needs.


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Monthly Archives: August 2014

5 Finger Foods for a Last-Minute Labor Day Party

Labor Day is coming up this weekend, but it’s not too late to plan a last-minute get-together with your friends and family. All you need are a few simple recipes for some easy summer finger foods.

At Garden of Eating Catering, we’ve compiled 5 of our favorite easy finger foods that are perfect for your end-of-summer celebration.

 1. Veggie Dippers

Make a trip to your local farmers market to pick out your favorite fresh vegetables to use as dippers. As long as they’re fresh, firm, and easy to slice long-ways for dipping, they’ll be ideal. Classics like celery, carrots, cucumbers, and bell peppers work well, but we also love to think outside the box with vegetables like jicama, or even fruits like apples!

Next, pull together a team of slicers and whip up your favorite dip. We like sundried tomato or spinach-artichoke!

2. Great Guacamole

Nothing is simpler or more summer fresh than guacamole. Not to mention it’s always a crowd pleaser. Infuse your guac with onions, garlic, and cayenne pepper for a twist on the original, or simply add a little salt and some fresh lime juice to focus all the attention on the natural flavor of the avocado.

3. Summer Sliders

It wouldn’t be a Labor Day gathering without firing up the grill! But don’t worry: these burgers are a cinch. Just pack together your mini-patties and throw them on the grill. When they’re done, cover with American cheese slices and place patties between the tiny buns. Then, set out burger condiments and your favorite toppings. Try the basics, like lettuce, tomato, and onion, or add some variety with avocado slices or barbeque sauce. Either way, we guarantee that your guests will rave about these sliders!

 4. Caprese Salad on a Stick

It’s pretty safe to say that any food on a stick is going to be a hit with company for an outdoor party. But even better is a fresh, delicious, and simple recipe with no fork required. All you need is fresh mozzarella, basil, and cherry tomatoes. Right before serving, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with a little salt, and this crowd pleaser is ready to be served.

5. Fresh Fruit Platter

You can’t forget dessert, but why make things complicated? A fresh fruit platter is a great way to add sweetness to your gathering without the mess of baking. Try summer favorites such as watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, and kiwi for a wide spectrum of both color and taste. Plus, no matter what food allergies or special needs your guests might have, fresh fruit (along with many of the options above) is gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan.

 

Holiday get-togethers are all about spending time with friends and family, so don’t spend your time in the kitchen. Use these Garden of Eating Catering favorite recipes to bring simplicity and style to your Labor Day party.

5 Surprising Occasions to Have Catered

When you think of catering, you probably think of weddings and big corporate events. But more and more people are starting to realize the value of catering for other kinds of events as well. When life gets hectic, hiring a caterer can help take the pressure off of the host so that he or she can focus attention on other details. Here are just a few events that may not initially come to mind when you think of catering, but can be enhanced by hiring someone else to take care of food and drinks for you.

1. A wine tasting

If you are hosting a wine tasting, chances are your focus is going to be on – well, the wine! But it’s likely that you will need to provide at least a modest food offering for your guests to nibble on between sips. While you may already have the wine taken care of, a caterer can help you by providing anything from the simplest items, like cheese that pairs well with your wine selections, to something more elaborate, such as meat, cheese, and olive platters.

2. Baby and Wedding Showers

Traditionally, food at baby and wedding showers has either been prepared by the hosts, or is served potluck style. But in today’s busy world, it’s hard to find the time to put together food to serve your guests, or even to make one or two dishes to bring. A caterer can take care of everything for you, so that you can spend your time preparing other aspects of the shower.

3. Dinner Parties

Have you been meaning to host a dinner party in your home, but you feel as if you don’t have the time to prepare? You are not alone. Time constraints and the pressure for every detail to be perfect prevents many people from hosting the dinner party that they have been wanting to have. The truth is that dinner parties are not about home cooking, plating, and courses planned and executed to perfection. Dinner parties are about having a wonderful meal with people you enjoy spending time with. Hiring a caterer can help you turn your home dinner party into a reality, all with less stress and more enjoyment for you.

4. Super Bowl and other sports parties

At your next Super Bowl or basketball championship party, why not skip the pizza and wings? Make your sports-watching get together stand out from the rest with an unconventional and delicious menu for party-goers. Not everyone enjoys eating typical sports-day food. Provide more nutritious foods for your guests by hiring a caterer.

5. Corporate cocktail hour

Cocktail hours can be deceptive: since it is not a big meal, it’s easy to forget just how much preparation is involved. Additionally, cocktail time has unique challenges for the host that many people aren’t aware of. For example, all that finger food needs to keep coming throughout the event, possibly for a couple of hours or more, and it needs to be warm when it is presented to guests. Don’t try to work out the logistics yourself: let a caterer take care of it for you!

The next time you’re having one of these events, don’t let food and drink preparations bog you down and prevent you from handling other aspects of the event. Call Garden of Eating Catering and let us take care of everything!

8 Questions to Ask Your Caterer For a Corporate Event

8 Questions to Ask Your Caterer For a Corporate Event

When you’re planning for an office luncheon, holiday party, picnic, or cocktail reception for your business, choosing the right caterer is essential. You may be overwhelmed by your options, but choosing a caterer is easy when you know the right questions to ask.

1. What is your company’s specialty?

Find out what the company is known for. For example, maybe they specialize in picnic food or party essentials. Not only will this help you find someone who specializes in what you need, but it will help you find the caterer’s best dish. Try asking, “What do you offer that other caterers do not?”

2. What about guests with dietary restrictions?

It is more important than ever that your caterer is able to accommodate special dietary needs such as gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan options. Even if you don’t know of any person in your organization with those needs, you might be surprised to find how many people have these special requests. In these cases, the caterer should be able to deliver.

3. Do you offer custom menus?

Is the caterer flexible and able to change their menu according to your needs? Corporate events are sometimes subject to changes to the venue, the amount of time allotted for the event, or event inclement weather. Having a caterer who can customize a menu means that the whole event is much more likely to be successful.

4. What if I have last-minute requests?

No matter how much careful planning goes into your event, it’s always possible that a small detail will slip through the cracks. Even in these cases, event planners are expected to deliver. This is why you need a caterer who has the manpower and the experience to accommodate requests at the last minute: it could be the difference between a great event and a flawless event.

5. How will your staff dress?

You need a catering staff that looks professional. The company should have appearance guidelines down to each detail, from the way staff wear their hair to the shoes and ties they wear. If the caterer does not have a quick and detailed answer to your questions regarding how staff present themselves, you should consider looking elsewhere.

6. What are your water or electrical needs?

All caterers need access to water and electricity to be able to provide food. If the event is outdoors, it’s especially important to ask about this.

7. Do you coordinate other rentals?

Your event may require other rentals such as seating, decorations, tableware, or even a venue. If you are in need of anything else besides catering, let the caterer know. Many caterers, including Garden of Eating, are able to coordinate these other needs, which could make the planning process much easier.

8. What does your proposal include?

Avoid being taken by surprise with hidden fees by finding out exactly what is included in the per-person price of the caterer’s service ahead of time. Setup costs, rental costs, and extras like napkins, condiments, and sides are all common sources for extra fees. When you learn exactly what is included, you can make an “apples to apples” comparison to help you in your decision.

 At Garden of Eating Catering, we want to help you plan the best event possible by providing flexible and professional service. We offer custom meals, a diverse menu, and accommodation for your guests’ food allergies and dietary restrictions. Learn more about our corporate catering services here

What questions do you have for us? Ask us now!