The Root of Flavor: Around the World with Vinegar

The Root of Flavor–a series of posts on our blog–we’re going to breakdown some of your favorite flavors, and maybe even give you some new ideas on how to utilize these tasty items.

A gallon of vinegar might not catch as many flies as a spoonful of honey, but it will sure make you a much better marinade and vinaigrette!

We’ve dedicated this Root of Flavor post to our unsung hero of all things pickled! VINEGAR!
Sit back and enjoy your trip around the vinegar-filled world.

 

VinegarGraphic

Download a PDF Version, here Vinegar Infographic.

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A2 Art & Brew

We had a wonderful time partnering with Wolverine Brewing and the Ann Arbor Art Center for the A2 Art & Brew Event this past Thursday! Thank you for a fun night, and congratulations to all those who participated.

For our contribution to the event, we made a Spicy BBQ Shrimp, served on a peach cornbread cake, garnished with a spicy pepper relish. The dish was paired with a truly innovative Gulo Gulo India Pale Lager from Wolverine Brewing Co. Utilizing their traditional lagering techniques, Wolverine Brewing was able to turn up the hop-dial and produce an inspired beer that both IPA and Lager fans will love.

The floral, hoppy notes of the I.P.L. matched up wonderfully with the hints of spice in the shrimp and relish. The bite was anchored by our savory peach corn cake, and washed down with a deliciously crisp but full flavored beer.

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We are looking forward to next years event!

What could be more perfect than a night filled with delicious food, innovative beer, and beautiful art?

Not much in our book.

Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market Wedding

We had the pleasure of catering a Wedding at the Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market in mid-August. While the weather leading up to the big day was chilly, the sun came out and gave us PERFECT weather for the al fresco dining. The rustic canopy of the market rooftop gave the perfect covering, while it’s open walls offered 360 views of quirky Kerrytown.

The menu consisted of an assortment of gourmet platters, including antipasto, brie and fresh berries, thinly sliced beef, and a 4 cheese macaroni bake. The desserts were an assortment of small portioned cake shooters, allowing guests to sample multiple cakes. During events like this, it almost doesn’t even seem like work!

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AntipastoPlatter

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Brie

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BeefTenderloinPlatter1

CakeShooters

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Flowers

 

Preparing for Big [BIG] Events

CrislerLargePeople

Planning a picnic, tailgate, gathering, or any type of event that involves 400+ people? Well, not to worry, we have a few tried-and-true tips for making sure your guests have a great time and your event goes off without a hitch.

  • First off, call a caterer, this is WAAY too big for you to do alone!
  • Simplify your food offerings. While everything sounds good, the more choices you offer, the more complicated things will get, and the more items you’ll most likely end up running out of. If offering multiple “main” dishes, make sure each can serve about 60% of your guests (ex. 250 servings per dish for an event for 400 people)
  • Don’t come up short, plan for lots of disposable plates, silverware, cups, and napkins. Many people will take multiple plates, go up for seconds, or just get messy. Don’t leave them high and dry (or covered in food).

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  • When dealing with a large group of people be sure you have adequate staff for all unseen events that will come up.
  • General Portion Sizes: 6-8 oz of protein per person | 12-16oz of beverages per person
  • Don’t have too make choices at the bar. A good rule of thumb: 3 choices for beer, 2 choices for white wine, and 1 red wine.
  • When serving dairy-based dishes (such as coleslaw or any type of mixed salad) use smaller platters that can be replenished in a quicker manner to ensure your guests are getting the freshest food.

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  • While setting up your buffet lines, it’s good to plan for about 75-100 people per side (double sided buffets are a great time and space saver!)
  • If your guests are coming at the same time, be sure to have foods that are already put together ready (nothing involving condiments–people can take forever putting mustard on their Hot Dogs!–or build-your-own)
  • Signage is important to make sure the flow of guests is smooth. Do they know where to go to get drinks? Is it clear that these crackers are supposed to be paired with this cheese? Is this platter Vegan-friendly?

 

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  • Be strategic in your placement of trashcans, more is always better!
  • If you would like an eco-friendly event, set up recycling “centers” at the trash cans for different types of waste (paper, cans/bottles, food, etc). Be sure to clearly mark the different bins, or even have a staff member stationed there to help your guests.

If you have any other questions for you large event, we’re happy to help!

Recipe: Blueberry Cake with Vanilla Yogurt Sauce

In honor of Summer–and the abundance of fresh seasonal Blueberries we have surrounding us–we wanted to pass along one of our favorite desserts that embodies this time of year (and it’s easy too!). Enjoy our Blueberry Cake with Vanilla Yogurt Sauce

BlueberryCake

to download this image, click HERE

 

The Root of Flavor: Peppercorns

The Root of Flavor–a series of posts on our blog–we’re going to breakdown some of your favorite flavors, and maybe even give you some new ideas on how to utilize these tasty items.

Today’s The Root of Flavor is about Peppercorns. You’ve seen them in a variety of colors, but how does it’s appearance affect the flavor?

Peppercorns

 

to download this image, click here

The Root of Flavor: Salt

The Root of Flavor–a series of posts on our blog–we’re going to breakdown some of your favorite flavors, and maybe even give you some new ideas on how to utilize these tasty items.

Today’s The Root of Flavor is about Salt. Throughout the years salt has been an important part of human history; flavoring food, acting as currency, preserving meat, medicinal applications, hospitality rules, and more.

Salt

to download a copy of this image, click here

How to Keep Things “Cool” in the Summer

Now that we’ve figured out how to prepare for the rain, how do we ensure our food stays fresh during the upcoming hot Summer months? Here are a few tips to make sure your guests are able to enjoy the delicious food you’ve selected for your event:

IceMilk

Custom ice tray for Milk and Cookie dessert shooter created by our Administrative Chef, Paul, who is also a professional ice carver

Food

  • Be aware of your food placement. Take in to account how long your event will be and the movement of the sun. Your pasta salad may be covered in the shade when you put it out, but in an hour it may be directly in the path of the sun.
  • When choosing a cake for your big day, you may want to select fondant rather than buttercream frosting if you’re planning on being outside. Buttercream not only will melt under hot conditions, but it will attract bugs (that will also get stuck if they get too close to the cake).
  • Opt for salads that have an oil or vinaigrette base rather than dairy. Try a vinegar-based Asian Slaw rather than a traditional Creamy Cole Slaw for something that will stay fresh longer in the heat, and it will give your guests something new.

Ice

  • Never underestimate the power of ice on a hot day. When in doubt, always get more than you think you’ll need. You can get creative with your ice offerings, such as incorporating ice carvings (like the one pictured above)

Other

  • If supplying water bottles, have a marker nearby so guests can personalize theirs. This will cut down the amount of half used bottles that will be strewn about and abandoned throughout the event.
  • Offer your food in smaller containers. Rather than one large container of salad for 100 people, prepare four containers for 25 people that you can easily replenish so they’re not sitting out for hours at a time.

The Root of Flavor: Oils

The Root of Flavor–a series of posts on our blog–we’re going to breakdown some of your favorite flavors, and maybe even give you some new ideas on how to utilize these tasty items.

Today’s The Root of Flavor is about Oil. Whether you’re adding a drizzle to your salad or preparing for a full submerge for deep frying, there are many different oils to choose from, each with it’s own unique characteristics.

OilTo downtown this image, click here

Do you have a go-to oil for salad dressings or stir-frys? We’d love to hear about it!