End of School Year Cookout

School’s almost out and the best way to celebrate another year of school is to spend it with your classmates and friends. As summer begins, people already have plans on how they will spend their vacation. However, before everyone goes out to chase their perfect vacation, throw a cookout that gathers everyone and offers a chance to share stories about the previous school year, enjoy the outdoors, and eat some great food.

West Texas catering service for your end of school cookout

When throwing a cookout, it is important to know how many people are going to attend, or at least a close estimate so you can choose the appropriate venue and the right amount of meals to prepare. Also, is the cookout going to be a potluck situation or will you host it on your own? Potluck means that the guests bring different meal items for the event, which they know and are informed about beforehand. If you choose the latter option (hosting it yourself), the meals that you prepare are going to be crucial to the outcome of the cookout event. If you are still pondering over what to cook, here are some recipes you make use of:

Asian Chicken Skewers

For this recipe you will need a marinade mixture made of cilantro leaves, chili sauce, garlic, ginger, salt and onions. Throw them in a food processor or blender and process until smooth.

Prepare skewers and place boneless, skinless chicken strips onto the skewers. Place the skewered chicken strips onto a nonreactive baking dish and rub the marinade mixture on each strip. Cover the dish and leave it in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours to marinate. Grill chicken over medium-high heat until well charred or cooked through.

Grilled Hotdogs with Homemade Pickle Relish

Hotdogs and sausages are favorites among cookouts. What you need is a pack of hotdogs or sausages, assorted mustard, ketchup, hotdog buns, and other condiments that go well with hotdog sandwiches (like your favorite homemade pickle relish).

You can make your own pickle relish with the following ingredients and procedure:

• You will need cider vinegar, mustard seeds, coriander seeds, sugar, sour dill pickles, red and yellow pepper, onions, and fresh dill.
• Boil vinegar, mustard, and coriander seeds in medium heat until reduced by half and slightly syrupy.
• Remove from heat then add remaining ingredients. Mix all together. You can add salt and pepper to taste.
• Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.

If your guests have any special requests on condiments, consider having jalapenos, tomatoes, and grated cheese on hand. The condiments will give your guests more choices to satisfy their varying taste buds.

Cookouts are always pleasant events and double as a great way to end the school year. If you think that you will be short of time in preparing and handling the meal requirements, you can always ask your West Texas catering service to step in and ensure a great event.

National Pecan Month

This April is National Pecan Month, celebrating one of the most flavorful and important nuts in North America. A Pecan is the only tree nut that is native to the North American continent (which accounts for 80 percent of the world’s supply). Pecans were favored by early civilizations/settlers and served as a major food source because of their prominence and are easy to de-shell.

Ask your West Texas caterer to included pecan in your event dishes

Though the settlers weren’t aware of it, we now know today that pecans include 19 important vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A and E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, and several B vitamins. They are also a good source of fiber and possess high levels of heart-healthy unsaturated fats, making them an excellent source of all round nutrition.

Pecan recipes

There are many different recipes that we associate with the pecan. While many of us remember the wonderful scent of a pecan pie baking in the oven or even enjoying some topped on a chocolate cake with frosting, there are various other dishes that one should consider when it comes to including this healthy nut in your diet.

Toasted pecans atop baked pumpkin muffins make for a nutritional and tasty treat for kids at a birthday party. It’s likely that the parents are going to want some too. But for those that would want to enjoy pecans as part of a meal, mixing fettuccini, asiago cheese, zucchini, and a few pecans make for a tasty Italian-styled dish that will please any guest list.

Chicken Masalas laced with crushed pecans is a great combination, especially for summertime events. It combines the great flavor of a classic dish with the wonderful taste and nutrition of the pecan. On the other hand, you don’t always have to get exotic in order to enjoy pecans. Maple honey and pecans mixed with apples and pears into a salad is a highly nutritional (and tasty!) addition to your day and doesn’t take much time or effort to prepare.

Sweet tooth pecans

You can include pecans in your sweet tooth indulgences, too. Consider hot caramel and pecans on top of ice cream as a perfect after-dinner treat. Alternatively, you may be in the mood for something to keep you going in the morning or afternoon, which is where a banana-pecan smoothie would hit the spot. Even for breakfast, the pecan can be your tasty friend when mixed with hot cakes, French toast, or atop your syrup-laced waffles.

For those looking for some great party favor snacks, a choice dish is the pecan-stuffed jalapenos, which improves on the classic jalapeno popper recipe. Some snacks are a little simpler, such as chili and lime covered pecans which are delicious and make great tabletop snacks for guests.

When planning your upcoming event, be sure that you discuss these and many other recipes with your choice West Texas caterer and discover what choice pecan dishes will leave guests wanting more. Even when you’re not preparing for a party, there are countless ways to include this highly nutritional and tasty nut into your everyday diet.

Customer Service and Your Event

Businesses often plan special events for their employees and customers, offering them the opportunity to share and interact with one another. And while these events are often planned and organized outside of a workplace environment, it doesn’t mean that adhering to proper business etiquette is any less important.

Customer service tips from your West Texas caterer

In fact, one of the most profound characteristics of the business world is the very core of your event. It is the customer service skills that you exhibit to your guests that will ultimately allow them to get the most out of the experience.

Respond appropriately

Customer service at your event is one thing that you can’t afford to overlook. Consider what it is that the guests ultimately want from you. Is it an exciting event or plenty of attention, among other things? How do you deliver that? Well, it all comes down to how you interact with them.

Keep in mind that you’ll need to be able to accept both compliments and complaints. So how do you plan to react to your guests? Do you have time to listen to an on-the-spot complaint? Perhaps there was a miscommunication about attire or certain parts of the schedule.

The key is to empathize with your customers regardless of the environment. To do this, you have to be ready to listen to them. It’s often true that organizing an event can leave you short-handed very easily. But if you balance the importance of quality customer service into your event, you’ll receive more compliments than complaints.

In many situations, listening isn’t just about what the guests are saying. One must also be able to ask: What aren’t they saying? Are your guests wandering around, appearing confused, and avoid confronting anyone? To display quality customer service, one must also be able to observe the customer and respond preemptively. Be aware of what is going on around you, and look out for signals, hints, and subliminal messaging.

Customer service all around

Listening to what they have to say isn’t just your task though. It’s important that everyone involved in the event is able to cooperate with you by practicing customer service that reflects your business practices. Does your master of ceremonies respond well to your guests? Do they know where to go to resolve an issue? What about the caterer? How do you make sure that your West Texas caterer also practices the customer service you need them to at your event? Do they have experience in this area? Do they practice good customer service with you?

Though your event’s services may be outsourced, it doesn’t mean outside parties are separate from your brand image during this event. So it is vital that they reflect well on your business and personal image.

Having an effective customer service response present at your event isn’t only up to your business. All those involved, from catering services to decorations and stage setups, should be able to practice good customer service, with both you and the guests at the event.

When Planning an Event Would You Use Disposables?

One of the most asked questions when planning any event is whether to use disposables or glass/chinaware. While some prefer the professional and elegant appearance of authentic, yet fragile, dinnerware, there is always the option of plastic for your needs.

Ask your West Texas caterer on what dinnerware is best for your event

Now, when most individuals think of plastic, they think of the dollar store items. These are still useful for many events, and quite inexpensive, but there are actually plastic dinnerware items which can be quite as effective as their costly counterparts.

Financially efficient

Perhaps one of the most advantageous things about disposable dinnerware is that it’s financially efficient. It can be difficult to keep track of silverware and glasses during an event, especially when there are children around (dropping and breaking).

When you go with disposable plastic wares, you don’t have to worry about things getting broken, stolen, or lost. If they do, it’s not a big deal and you can always provide another plate or glass. In fact, it is far favorable to use plastic since it is kid-friendly, and it won’t make a mess when dropped, accidentally or intentionally.

Glassware and china can become expensive to organize, especially if there are any last-minute changes (surprise visitors or dinner wishes). Plastic dinnerware does come in all shapes and sizes, and is widely available for large groups, so locating it is not very difficult at all.

Also, consider the cleaning hassle that comes with glassware. Every time someone needs a new glass or plate, you may have to clean dirty ones to give out. With plastic, that isn’t necessary. If a guest requires another dish or cup, you can replenish them with little effort, and the best part is- it’s always fresh. You don’t have to worry about dirty cups or dishes to begin with. Simply open the package and replace used dishes with others.

And for those that are worried about being environmentally efficient, modern plastic is 100 percent recyclable.

Versatile visuals

Creating a colorful event easily and inexpensively can be done with plastic. In fact, plastic allows you to be creative with your dinnerware without breaking the bank. There are various colors, styles, and sizes, all of which are easy to fit and accommodate. And the best part is: cleanup is a breeze.

Clear plastic ware can be used to present an exotic or colorful dessert. If you have a special dish that appeals to more than just taste (such as a multi-layered dish), clear plastic can offer the perfect view to allow your guests to enjoy both taste and the visual effects.

Take the time to discuss your event’s circumstances with your West Texas caterer to see what types of dinnerware would best suit your event’s purpose and budget. Next time you’re shopping for dinnerware for an upcoming event, take a look at what disposable plastic wares has to offer. While it might sound cheap, you’d be surprised at the authentic and exotic styles that will light up the event.

Breakfast is Great Meeting Food

September is amongst the busiest months of the year. With school getting back into the schedule and many individuals getting back from vacation time, there arrives the perfect opportunity to make our mornings a little more attractive. September is national All-American breakfast month, presenting us with the chance to turn our regular meetings into something that both clients and teammates want to attend.

Breakfast meeting for a busy schedule

West Texas caterers know what to serve on different occasions

Though schedules are busy, by combining breakfast with meetings, we are actually able to consolidate two very important parts of the day. Initially, morning meetings are designed to start up the day by getting the attendees focused on the tasks that lie before them. So, this gives you the opportunity to deliver the necessary message while ensuring that your audience is ready to move on and achieve their goals.

What are the benefits?

When it comes to breakfast, it’s important to understand that this is perhaps the most important meal of the day. Breakfast offers an individual the nutrition they need for the majority of their day. Energy, essential vitamins, and otherwise satisfying the appetite are all jobs entitled to breakfast, so it must be taken seriously if you want to make the most of your breakfast meeting.

Basically, you’re going to want to keep people energized. Early morning can be difficult unless you have the energy to get up and get going afterwards. What foods are going to offer the most enduring energy? Breakfast is responsible for feeding the brain and body, so you can help stimulate your audience by feeding them the right combinations of tasty breakfast features.

Seek out proteins and balanced carbohydrate. Sugars can leave an audience tired after it wears off. You want your audience to be alert and attentive during and after the meeting. Add in fruits for nutritional value and flavor. Bananas, strawberries, and melons are excellent sources of sweetness and nutrition, while shakes can make a great substitute for coffee.

Additionally, you’re also going to want to increase the desire to attend a meeting. Not everyone is eager to attend an early morning meeting, so this is your chance to offer some extra incentive. What are some foods that appeal to your audience? Is there a preference? You might even consider requests to better your selection such as some apple toppings on your pancakes. You will be able to rely on those who cater to West Texas because they are always more than willing to work with you on deciding what breakfast solutions would best fit your particular situation.

Another question involves whether or not you should keep things simple. Or perhaps you want to create a unique opportunity for your audience. Time is a large factor in these decisions, so depending on what you want to offer, your selection will make a difference.

Breakfast is a great opportunity to gather everyone for a meeting they’d actually want to attend. This September, be sure to organize a breakfast meeting that offers nutrition, vitality, and a tasty opportunity for your audience because it’s the All-American thing to do.

What is a Sip and See?

Baby showers have always been the biggest party every expectant mother plans for. Everyone gathers together to share advice, personal experiences and helpful hints. There are gifts, possibly some cake and juice. However, the baby shower can be seen as an event that looks forward to the epic transition from an expectant woman to a worn and stressed out mother.

Let your West Texas caterer take care of your sip and see event

As it so happens, a new event is currently trending that glorifies the success of childbirth. It is called the “Sip and See” event, in which everyone has an opportunity to bask in the angelic aura of your baby. It is possibly one of the best ideas because what mother doesn’t want to show off the product of the last nine months of hard work?

Of course, with a busy schedule, timing is essential to the planning process. It will naturally take a couple of weeks to get your daily schedule under control and get a feel for what to expect during your new adventures with your baby. But, it is just as important to give yourself an opportunity to have a little fun.

The invitations should be sent out as a birth announcement heralding the arrival of the newborn. Color depends…so if you don’t know yet, stick with a color that is genderless. Make sure you make the announcement, but do make it clear that you have a celebration event coming up soon.

For the event, you’ll need to have your baby looking angelic, which isn’t hard while they’re sleeping, so choose an outfit that you’ve bought for yourself (it’s good to avoid choosing an outfit that was gifted by someone else for neutrality measures). The place would likely be your home or a familiar and secure location, so decorations should pertain to a “new arrival” and would be either pink or blue.

The big question is: What’s for eats? You’ll want to stay with simple foods that aren’t going to be too distracting. Since the mother is definitely going to be busy, it’s unlikely that anybody would want to spend vast amounts of time in the kitchen preparing party favors and snacks. The best tactic would be to get pre-made party platters. West Texas catering services are perfect for this situation and can prepare any array of entrees and party flavors that you want. You may consider selections that are fruity and sweet or even a cake to mark the event.

And while the baby is the subject of the day, it isn’t likely that they’re going to be snacking on any of the goods. This is where the “sip” part of the event comes into play. In honor of the celebration, Champaign is in order, or a sparkling cider to suit your taste preferences.

Keep in mind that the “Sip and See” event is best worked much like an open house. Set a date and time frame for friends to visit. After all, not everyone can see the baby at the same time. Enjoy your event and unlike in baby showers, the men can have a taste of the fun as well, so don’t be too exclusive when it comes to showing off your new baby.

The Many Sides of Strawberries

Strawberries are among the tastiest of fruits. They’re sweet and make for an excellent treat on their own. But within this small berry, there lie many benefits and a versatility that makes it a great addition to just about any meal that you can serve.

A single cup of strawberries result in astounding health benefits. Within this small berry, there are large quantities of vitamins, nutrients, and minerals that are needed to ensure quality health and ongoing wellness. One benefit is that it helps ensure good healthy digestion with valuable dietary fiber. In addition to vitamin C, antioxidants known as phenols help to remove toxins from the body. They also contain the mineral, manganese, which is used to not only detoxify the body, but decrease cellular inflammation and oxidation, which are often causes of heart disease. Manganese, vitamin K, and the potassium found in strawberries also help ensure proper bone growth and continuing health throughout life. Strawberries are renowned for their ability to inhibit the enzyme cyclooxygenase (COX) which affects those suffering from arthritis, asthma, and other inflammatory issues in the body. While small in size, these tiny fruits can make a huge difference in our daily lives.

But, the benefits aren’t just in health, they’re tasty as well. Strawberries are famous for their incorporation into pies and desserts like Strawberry shortcake and Strawberry lemon pie. Even cold desserts, like strawberry and yogurt, and other parfait desserts that don’t require any baking or cooking, make for an increasingly tasty dessert table.

But, did you know that chicken and strawberry salads are another way to enjoy a main course? That makes for a healthy treat for your mouth and body. There’s even the tasty strawberry and avocado salsa that can make for an excellent dip at your next party or event.

Famous classics would have to incorporate the favorite strawberry daiquiri, whether or not alcohol is involved. Strawberry ice cream is a familiar treat to many children, as well as the strawberry jam which makes for a great addition to sandwiches and salads or just about anything you want to sweeten up.

Preparing an assortment of the many sides of strawberries can take some time, and not everybody preparing for their next event will be able to focus on preparing and taking advantage of the many recipes that a strawberry can offer. Consider catering to your fellow west Texans by involving a Midland caterer to help you create a fantastic meal arrangement for your next event. Not only can you enjoy the tasty strawberry desserts, but you can incorporate a variety of main courses that put strawberries at the front of your mealtime special.

Strawberries aren’t just good for you, they’re possibly one of the most flavorful, and yet such healthy treats that you can add them to any meal. Whether you want a sweet dessert or have the desire for a healthy main course and appetizer, strawberries can find their way onto just about any part of your table.

Chocolate for Everyone!

March 18th starts a week dedicated to the chocolaty dishes that manage to make everything taste wonderful. The third week in March celebrates National Chocolate Week, so be sure that your event includes a few dishes that will draw the attention of your audience.

Desserts are perhaps the number one source of chocolate goodies. Cake, ice cream, and cookies are popular pastimes, and can always be a crowd pleaser. But, food trends have begun to demand a taste that includes nutritional value. So, why not consider chocolate dipped fruits, such as strawberries. Think of the chocolate as a dip, and the fruit is the chip. These displays can really add an elegant, tasty, and chocolaty feature to your event.

But, dessert isn’t the only part of the meal that chocolate goes good with. The main course has been found to feature this sweetener as a tasty addition to fish and chicken dishes such as chicken with simplified mole and salmon with white chocolate. Because chocolate comes in a variety of flavors, it can meet the demands of just about any dish. Chili Con Carne y Chocolate is a wonderful Tex-Mex dish that takes advantage of a bitter-sweet chocolate. These main courses can be an excellent way to add some chocolaty goodness to an upcoming event.

There’s even a dish finding its origins in Spain and many Asian countries such as the Philippines- Chomparado. This tasty dish has a few variations, depending on the source, but it is primarily composed of sticky rice that can either be dipped into, or mixed in with a warm dark chocolate. This dish makes a wonderful snack or dessert, but you’ll be guaranteed that everyone will want some more.

Adding chocolate to your event is one thing, but finding the right help to get your menu to the dinner table is another. This is where caters, such as Gomez Catering, can make a world of difference. Not only can they prepare a quality meal for your event, but they can definitely add a chocolate topping to the party.

Be sure that your next event takes advantage of March’s chocolaty week. With some extra help from the professionals, you can be assured that any meal on your table has that unforgettable flavor.

Sweet And Chocolatey – Valentine’s Day

The time for sweets for our sweethearts is getting close and by now you must be wondering what you’re going to do this Valentine’s Day. You don’t always have to go out to have a great time, and often the best experience is one that you’ve put a lot of thought into with a romantic setting for two.

Set the mood

The first step is to set the mood. No kitchen, no casual dinnerware, no casual anything. This day should be uniquely special. Start by arranging for a separate dining area. Perhaps a balcony so that you can enjoy the stars (weather permitting) or even in the living room in front of the fireplace will make great locations for a pleasant eve. Be sure that the table you use will only seat two in order to keep things close and personal. Use a cloth, preferably red or a darker shade to add to the atmosphere. Don’t be sparing with the fine dinnerware either. Put all of your assets to use for this one night of the year.

Flowers are a definite

This doesn’t mean that you should stop by and get a bouquet of roses, but an array of flowers should await your valentine. Place them on shelves, the dinner table, and other areas where you won’t be sitting or walking since flower and rose petals can stain fabric or clothing. The look and feel of flower petals has an effect on both eye and nose, helping to set the mood for a special occasion.

A romantic dinner for two

Now comes the part where you get to enjoy a quality meal. Because our lives can keep us busy all the time, it can be difficult to prepare a meal that is special enough for our valentine. Since ordering a pizza might not be right for the mood, you can have a special dinner uniquely made for you by a caterer. You don’t have to spend an afternoon cooking up something to prove to your valentine that they’re special to you. Enjoy a special evening by setting the mood, and let the chefs at Gomez Catering get your meal just right for the two of you.

Preparing A Chinese New Year Celebration

This year is the year of the Dragon, celebrating those born under this Chinese Zodiac sign. The Dragon represents nobility and luck, and is one of the most popular amongst Chinese celebrated years. So this year, we should all celebrate our own share of luck to start out the new year.

A traditional look

Red and black balloons with golden ribbons provide a great look for your ceiling, and are easy enough to do in a matter of minutes. Plenty of light carried by the classic red Chinese lanterns that hang from trees and posts will bring luck to your event. These lanterns can string across any area, and give a very festive vibe to the atmosphere. On the table, bowls with the floating Peonies (flowers that represent riches and honor) make a colorful addition and aren’t difficult to manage.

Taste the new year

Of course, it all comes down to what’s for dinner. Celebrating the Chinese New Year wouldn’t be quite right without that special flavor. The scent of Kung Pao Chicken, egg rolls, the flavors of sautéed onions, garlic and shrimp all filling the air. While mastering the skills to create such an array of cuisine would be valuable, we don’t always have the time to accomplish such tasks. Luckily, caterers like Gomez Catering can bring that unique flavor to your event so that you can relax and enjoy the festivities.

Because the food can flow with the theme, why not take a few lessons in the use of chopsticks to really experience the feel of the event? It can be a little tricky at first, but with a folded up piece of paper and a rubber band, you can turn any pair of chopsticks into a utensil that anyone can use. Just wedge the folded paper between the two sticks at the top end, and then wrap a rubber band around the area. Then it’s time to enjoy the feast!

This year, celebrate the Year of the dDagon with an event that brings the unique experience and food from a land where tradition coincides with elegance…and a little bit of luck.