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Staff Meal

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
We feed about 12 of us on a daily basis with a budget of $25-$40. As you know keeping it interesting and below cost can be tough. We dont give left over crap or failed specials for family meal, every day is something fresh and "plated" (the only place i've ever worked that served it like this as opposed to throwing some hotel pans under the lamps).
I'd love to hear what you guys are doing for staff meals...any unusual favorites or tricks up your sleeve would be cool to share. Yesterday we had some boring (sorry freddis) chicken and rice dish that we've eaten about 20 times. We seem to have gotten into a pattern and stuck in a rut a little bit. Seeing Thomas Keller's French Laundry staff meals doesn't make me feel any better either.
Cooking staff meal used to be a privilege in kitchens I've worked. I feel like the only one who enjoys doing it anymore...

What do you all think???
Chef Brian
Keep those fires burnin'
 
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post #2 of 18
Cooking staff stinks, I contribute when I can but I can say most employees ***** whatever you make and there will always be someone who will complain, then you have the vegans and the vegetarians and the no pork eaters, soon enough you have 3 staff meals going on. We have had pasta for lunch and dinner now for about 5 weeks now. Last week chef made meatloaf, then turned it into meatballs, then it became meat sauce for pasta then in its final incarnation we had tacos. YUM! Most employees order out which makes chef even angrier then staff gets worse. It is a very touchy subject where I work.

My favorite staff I have seen so far is vegetarian surprise----
You guessed it, there was meat in it. LOL
Fluctuat nec mergitur
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Fluctuat nec mergitur
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post #3 of 18
My Kitchen staff gets whatever they ask for, for the most part. As long as its quick and easy to make, I dont make a big deal out of it. As long as they dont take to long to eat it.
post #4 of 18
whats a staff meal?!?!

If you want food, ya gotta buy it 1/2 price.
post #5 of 18
Not in my kitchen.
I refuse to be on the line with and watch my chef's and line cooks sweat, work their heart out, and do over 200+ plus covers to the point of exhastion, and make them buy their food. Not at all. I would never do that.
Right before cleanup I ask everybody what they would like, we eat, clean, and go home.

I get embarrassed when I hire a new chef/cook/prep boy/dishwasher, and they come up to me and ask me what the food situation is.
I ask them if they think they worked their you know whats off, which they always do, and cook them a meal.

This is just my opinion, and I'm sure there are other Head Chefs and Kitchen Managers that will not agree with me, but this is just my honest opinion.
post #6 of 18
Sounds like a good deal... our chefs are on the whole "food cost" thing. I have never worked for a place that does staff meal.

Our goal is 27.3%, and I think were in the 35 range.
post #7 of 18
I think that is ridiculous. How much does a chicken breast and rice or a plate of mashed pots really cost. Boggles my mind. Really does.
post #8 of 18
Guess I've worked for some pretty cheap people then if staff meal is a widespread practice.

Usually I'll grab a cup of soup right before we pitch it, but thats it as far as freebies goes. When I consider how much we lose in pilfered food, staff meal probably would help with food cost and employee morale.
post #9 of 18
It definately helps with Morale. DEF!
post #10 of 18
we feed 1700 to 2000 a day in our Cafeteria. we get it all . I like the french dips the most. but the mexican station is pretty full all the time.
on days when we have banquets. I usally eat in there prime rib and spuds do me just fine.
post #11 of 18
The kitchen staff where I work eats for free, unless it is seafood, then it's 50% off. The wait staff can order from the menu but their food is always 50% off, no freebies for them.
On really busy days (like Gasparilla) we do a staff meal, but we have been known to order pizza from a pretty decent pizza joint up the street.
post #12 of 18
when we're prepping for events we make plates sit down and eat like real people. I really try to make sure everyone who works a long day eats prior to going on site....does not always happen,most of the time by their choice and timing can be a bear.
Last event my guys had sashimi tuna....etc....
Most of the time if we're at the kitchen I'll combine vegtable plates....usually have alot of mediterranean around...dolmas, caponata, hummos, green loaded veg salads, cheese...always cheese usually farmstead chevre :), if there's meat around that's an option too. Feeding staff is just part of good business, happy workers are much easier to work with...
+ I want my guys to know what the food they are serving tastes like.
cooking with all your senses.....
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cooking with all your senses.....
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post #13 of 18
Where I worked many, many years ago, we could have as much soup, salad and baked potato as we wanted. If we had a morning shift, the sous would make us all a great breakfast, same thing for everyone and we'd sit around the kitchen and chat for a bit. Early mornings were slow in that particular tourist trap. Dinner was along the same lines but if someone wanted to bring in their own slab of meat or something, they could. I remember one fellow that liked to do that a lot.

What I liked best and what I remember the most is not the food in particular, but being able to stop for a moment and chat with my colleagues without the pressure of getting food out to customers.

I think wait staff had the same deal, but I'm not sure.
post #14 of 18
Thread Starter 
Many good bonds are formed at the table together in those 30 minutes...
Keep those fires burnin'
 
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Keep those fires burnin'
 
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post #15 of 18
absolutely.....and the cost of feeding staff is just part of doing business for me, that time prior to packing up it's good to just stop and get refreshed before shlepping.
cooking with all your senses.....
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cooking with all your senses.....
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post #16 of 18
I always cook for my staff and I prep tester dish's for them. They usually love the food and it gives me a chance to show I know how hard they work and try new menu items. When I ran a full serve kitchen the idea that I would charge my staff was unheard of, we all work hard and the least I can do as the boss is to show them I know it.
Kill a cow...Light a fire.....The Magic begins
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Kill a cow...Light a fire.....The Magic begins
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post #17 of 18
That is my exact point of view on this matter.
post #18 of 18

deux cheeze grilled

grilled foccacia with gorgonzola/brie spread, arugula and plum paste. add salad on side? is that in budget?
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