From 15 per meal to 40... In a bit over my head
First, Congratulations on doing the job. That's a long day seven days a week. Hope it's not too many weeks. You'll need some time off or end up going overboard.
Second, I wouldn't worry about the numbers too much. It really is just more of the same thing you're already doing. I don't see you mention what kind of cold storage you have. A walk-in would be helpful as would a rolling rack.
At any rate, as with any larger food service advance prep is most helpful. So put out one meal, prep for as many meals ahead as is practical in your circumstances.
If you can't tray things up on sheet pans for a meal or two ahead, at least get the basic materials out of the freezer so they will be thawed when you need them or out of the box or can or chopped ahead.
Breakfast can be scrambled eggs but you could also make frittatas for a crowd. Of course, cereal and granola with yogurt and fresh fruit.
While fresh is always preferable, if you have access and storage there are numerous products like pre made french toast you can buy from your supplier. Some are horrible but some are pretty good so if you can sample ahead of time that's helpful.
Dressing up the scrambled eggs also provides some variety. Mix in some fresh vegetables or seasoning. Peppers, onions and some chili for a mexican eggs special. A curry sauce, cheese sauce or hollandaise on top makes them less boring. Personally I love oatmeal for breakfast and that's really easy and fairly quick.
Foods to cook ahead while napping. Anything braised, like short ribs, brisket or stew. BBQ is low and slow. Pulled pork for sandwiches. Corned beef is a long cooker and if you cook extra for dinner you can use it for hash for breakfast. Just mix with potatoes and some onion and a little seasoning.
Okay, i need more coffee so that's all I have for now. Hopefully others here will have ideas but again, don't let the increase in customers throw you. If you can do 15, you can do 40.
PS. I was sorry to read the part about budget cuts forcing you to cook alone when the customer count has almost tripled. That would upset me a bit. But it will be a good challenge for you and you can still have a positive experience. If any of passengers offer to help with the foodservice, by all means say yes. even if it's only putting out the silverware. But you can also include foods in some meals that get everyone involved, like make your own sandwiches for lunch, or a burger bar. So you slice the meat or make the burgers but just tray up the ingredients and everyone builds their own meal.
breakfasts: strata, loco moco, amish casserole, fritatta, savory bread pudding with ground meat or sausage or bacon at service top with scrambled eggs salsa cheese and fire in oven to melt
change of shift: lasagna, stews, jambalaya, enchiladas
the key is prep as much in advance as you can.....and off the top of my head....
As said above eggs are your friend. scrambled eggs,fritatta or a simple bowl of hard boiled eggs will do. Prep the scramble egg mixture the night before so your are not wasting time cracking 4 flats of eggs and whipping them.
Country potatoes can be baked in the oven then night before and reheated.
Biscuits and sausage gravy. You can make the sausage gravy the night before and warm i back up in the morning... use frozen biscuits.
French toast can be made the night before and heated up in the morning.... or you can make a baked french toast in hotel pans. Line up the pieces of sliced bread, pour your custard over the top and bake.
Purchased muffins and bagels
Oatmeal or cold cereal.
Whole fresh fruit...apples, bananas, oranges
double duty is the way to go....
pulled pork can be roasted low and slow over night. Make enough for two days worth... one day use it for sandwiches...the next tacos.
Salisbury steak, baked hamburgers and or meat loaf ....make enough so you can be use to make a pasta dish for the next day.
Meatballs...fresh or frozen is up to you. Swedish one time... tomato sauce another time.
baked chicken parts....again...bake enough to put into a pasta for the next day.
pork tenderloin....fast! Brown them off and bake for 15 minutes... slice and serve.
pot roast... always better the next day.
Edited by Canele - 5/17/15 at 11:44pm
@cheflayne what is loco moco?? Because that literally translates to crazy booger