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post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

HELP!!

 

I'm doing a private fundraiser in less than a month. The crowd is ultra-wealthy, it's about 70-100 people for a cocktail reception. The event is strictly kosher (therefore no milk products can be served since meat will be served). Since it's for charity, the event organizers want me to keep costs low but still have the menu be tasty and upscale.  In addition to a sushi bar and a carving station, here is my HD menu:

 

-Salmon tartare (with creamy ginger-soy marinade, on a wonton crisp, with B&W sesame seeds and chives)

-Fried gnocchi with caramelized onions, sage and walnuts (served in little containers/bowls/something with little forks)

-Laffa squares with tandoori chicken (boneless thigh in chunks), cilantro

-Curried deviled eggs (with caramelized onions, nigella seeds)

-Spicy gazpacho shooters (in little shooter cups)

-Mini pitas with humus and spiced ground lamb (lemon zest)

 

My food cost is $11.73/person, I'm charging $46.92/person (food x 4). Hoping that will cover all my help, additional costs and any surprises (I have never done anything remotely like this before, I usually cater sit-down dinners out of my home for 20 people max and work alone just with cleaning help).

 

They also just decided they want a "soup bar" (selection of 3 soups with different toppings guests can use to customize). Was thinking: 

 

-Lamb and lentil (too costly? What if I use lamb shanks and shred the meat, instead of using shoulder?)

-Roasted winter squash

-Celery root

 

Toppings: fried onions; spiced pepitas; fried raisins; green onion/parsley/zest combo; tiny pumpernickel croutons

 

 

Thoughts? 

 

Also how much food do I actually make? Say the event is 3 hours. When pricing it I figured I would make 1 piece per menu item per person (except for the mini pitas, I figured on 2 per person). Is that how it's actually done? 

post #2 of 12

If it or they were strictly Kosher ( OU) they would not use you as you are prepping in your home. Plus every product you use inparticular chichen has to be certified kosher.

 

IF THIS IS AROUND DINNER TIME THEY WILL EAT A LOT.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #3 of 12

Food all sounds good. With a sushi bar in place, you might want to rethink the idea of a tartare though.

 

The soup bar they decided that they wanted...I am assuming the price you are charging will reflect the additional item,yes?

 

Not quite sure what all is involved with the sushi bar and carving station, but I would probably figure more in the 1 1/2 item per person. Best way I have found to approach amounts is to do a tasting with client and try to nail them down on amounts at that time before submitting my final bid.

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefedb View Post
 

If it or they were strictly Kosher ( OU) they would not use you as you are prepping in your home. Plus every product you use inparticular chichen has to be certified kosher.

 

IF THIS IS AROUND DINNER TIME THEY WILL EAT A LOT.

I am a strictly kosher caterer, I work out of my home. I hold by the absolute strictest kosher standards but I don't have certification from the OU. So my business is built on reputation and word-of-mouth in the community.

post #5 of 12

Interesting, where re you located that permits commercial cooking from a residential kitchen, kosher or otherwise?

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #6 of 12

FWIW....

I find getting dressed up (full hair and makeup, my best LBD and jewelry) is taking a bit longer these days ;-)

The last thing I want to do is spend half of the party in front of the ladies room mirror with a toothpick and dental floss.

Maybe cut back on some of those seeds?

 

mimi

post #7 of 12

Missed the soup bar part.....but personally if they want soup I would present it in a spoon and pass it also.

If there are no tables be ready for some spillage complaints as they will need 3 hands (drink, bowl and spoon) to enjoy it.

If the passed soup is vetoed, I assume the soup bowls and spoons will be crockery and (at the very least) an attractive stainless steel pattern, right?

If so IMO the passed food will look sort of tacky if presented in those little plastic cuppies.

Ultra wealthy peeps don't do plastic.

Paper napkins are ok if they are not glaringly white in color with a (small) deco such as the charity's logo.

Just my experience.

 

mimi

post #8 of 12

Just realized you were asking about your menu, nothing else.

Sorry if the second post came off as snarky.

It's just that formal cocktail parties are my very fave events and get quite excited when planning them.

lol

m.

post #9 of 12

I agree about the seeds <_< , even a high class male doesnt want to fiddle around with his teeth during a party. 

 

Also agree with the soup , that its definetly not a good idea because women in fancy dresses and men in suits would not appreciate a stain at a party , you are a cook , but you still have to think on your clients and how the food can be easily eaten , including the fact they may or may not be standing. Remembering that if you have  a soup bar , you also have a gazpacho in you menu <_< anyone else think its just too much liquid at a party and a bit repetitive.  Basically 4 soups , and i assume their will be drinks (booze) at the party , people don´t want to spend too much time in the bathroom. 

 

Im also unsure about the gnnochi , i dont know to me its seems a bit difficult to eat , especially since fiddling with forks and spoons at a cocktail is something i tend to avoid. Maybe a ravioli or tortellini stuffed with pumpkin ,sage, and walnuts topped with a very small amount of onions or maybe a sage butter over them. 

 

Also you have 2 menu items with caramalized onions , maybe switch the stuffing for the deviled egg. 

I dont think i would eat a deviled egg at a high end cocktail party , i find it too simple <_< a bit too homie.

If you are set in using it i would change get rid of the onions and seeds and change it to something else. 

 

I also wanted to know if you are doing this cocktail during late afternoon or at night , i the envirment will have a controled temp. etc....  because raw fish out for hours , exposed to air and at room temp w/wo sunlight is not something i would want to risk. If its something that will be served immediately , and you are confident you can pull it out go for it. Also hope you don´t have any pregnant guests at the party. 

 

Again i don´t cook kosher , so maybe thats why im being critical , just listed the things that came into my head that i would change. 


Edited by KaiqueKuisine - 11/13/13 at 9:16am

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Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the feedback! 

 

I was planning to do the soup bar with little ceramic mugs, no spoons. Cup-a-soup style. I attended a high-end bar mitzvah recently which had this, it was a popular station even among the most well-dressed women. :-)

 

I think you are right about the devilled eggs, plus I tested them out at a family party and they weren't a hit. Nobody complained but nobody went "wow" like they did with the other stuff.

 

So if I'm getting rid of the eggs... and the gazpacho because it's another soup... and the salmon tartare (assuming there will be a sushi station).... any suggestions on what I can do instead? Ideally they'd be low-cost...

post #11 of 12

Damn its late , cant believe im still awake but here goes. 

 

Instead of the deviled egg you could go for maybe a skewered meat. My chef once had a recipe where she would do skewered meat with rosemary spices , maybe pumpkin , and separate the branches to be used as the skewers its actually pretty intriguing , i just dont know how much of a hit it would be. My chef described it as orgasmic , but i have never tasted it. 

 

As i thought about the deviled egg and things that looked like an egg in my mind i had a spark. Stuffed potatoes.... i have done this recipe at the restaurant various times and its a hit. 

You half the peeled potatoes and remove most fo the center to be stuffed. You then stuff them with a mixture of of anything , i have done chicken as well as bacon and brocolli and spiced meat it works out great and it can be easy to eat if you stuff them delicately. Its simple , but depending on the stuffing it can be very edgy and high class , especially if well presented. 

Tip: To make sure the potatoes get cooked well and the stuffing doesnt burn , it may help to boil them for a few minutes or better yet cook them in steam. 

 

Instead of gazpacho maybe something like confited grape or cherry tomatoes skewered or on toothpicks served with basil , roasted pearl onions halfs , and roasted olives (its simple so has to be perfectly executed).

If you wish to not use anything tomato based and want something completely new and vegetarian maybe a falafel could work. You can eat it in 1-2 bites , you can season it well , and they usually arent greasy even though they are fried. I season mine with garlic, onion , parsley , cumin , cayenne , and cinnamon along with salt and pepper. Some people add cilantro or even mint to the mixture. They also keep well , and you can prep them and fry them when needed or last minute. 

I also remember a vegetarian recipe we did once that was a hit , but took a while to perfect. We quartered beets and would roast them for hours until they were cooked through , had some texture and lost some of their liquid. They were seasoned with salt , rosemary , ´pepper , and other spices i cant remember. They were easy to eat , were sweet and salty ( kinda tangy ) and im sure it would be a hit with some spice ( but attempt this recipe at home or in your kitchen before hand , because it can be tricky , and ugly unless well presented ). 

 

I also thought of a proscuitto with melon dish. Pickled melon with cured meat , red onions , spices and some really good olive oil. 

 

If you wish to scrap the salmon tartare but still keep the seafood or fish portion of the menu , maybe something along the lines of a salmon croute , or encruted and seasoned salmon. You could portion them a bit smaller and end up serving one to two portions per person. Maybe a salmon mouse or pate , served with some type of base to hold it. 

 

Well its late , and im not very helpful this late , but i hoped i helped as much as possible and gave you some decent ideas. 

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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post #12 of 12

I like the demi cups of soup idea  :lips:.

Too bad it is Kosher there was a great thread with about a zillion cheese ideas....

 

mimi

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