Do it yourself COOKING
Cooking in an unfamiliar kitchen and for a large group. And with people you have never worked with before, easily leads to delays. Portions too large or too small and not quite the taste you had hoped for.
Take a hint from the pros in catering and use the facilities we offer to get organized properly.
Prepare early. Take the afternoon to do the shopping or order before you arrive. See for instance:
This is where restaurant cooks go to buy well prepared items in quantity. You may need my membership card to get in!
We have 3 kitchens. Each kitchen has a 4 point induction top, a refrigerator and a dish washing machine. One kitchen has an oven of the usual size. This is the baking and frying kitchen. The second kitchen is equipped for preparing salads and vegetables. The third kitchen is for big pot cooking. Think soups or stews. This kitchen also has a 25 portion rice cooker.
Team 4 sets the table and team 5 does the disches!
Do not all pile up in one kitchen: divide into groups and work in different kitchens. One group may do the dessert in one kitchen, the other may prepare a salad in the second kitchen, while the third group prepares the main course in the third kitchen. More than 3 persons in one kitchen is usually not productive.
Make the main course something that is easily cooked in mass, maybe a stew or something quick and easy like a chili con carne or a spaghetti with a sauce.
Another trick of the pros: don’t try to do everything at the same time. Most chefs have their cold desserts finished long before they start on the main course. And they have cleaned and cut the food long before they actually start cooking. Or they buy washed and cut, potatoes peeled and pre-cooked, ready-made sauces, etc. Sligro does this very well.
Start with a relatively simple meal like breakfast. If that goes well, try your hand with a not too elaborate lunch and then progress to a dinner. You miss a kitchen appliance you need for the dish you have in mind? Ask me and I may be able to provide it from my own kitchen!
Want to make this a learning and rewarding group experience? Why not hire a local cook to show you where to shop, what to buy, how to prepare! I am happy to refer you.
Alternatively: do as my family does at Christmas time: make it an assignment that some group members make one large dish at home and bring it to your gathering. Most people know how to make at least one dish!