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wigs

I had a catering partner from 1989-1997, but then health problems forced her into an early

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wigs@juno.com
1918 posts
Joined: Mar 10, 2006

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Posted to Thread #30581 at 4:43 pm on Nov 11, 2018

retirement from this line of work so I have soldiered on alone since 1997. I had to quit taking the really big jobs that she & I could easily handle as a team, but were too much for one person to cook alone. I do hire server(s) as I need to. I quit advertising when my partner quit, and my clients continue to be folks that have been with me since the beginning. I also do sporadic temp work for a financial institution, and my two "little" part-time jobs keep me plenty busy at this time of the year.

I am a firm believer in doing all the advance planning that is possible and am an inveterate list-maker. For each catering job I will compile daily To Do lists; grocery lists for advance buying as well as purchases that need to be made the day before or the day of delivery/pickup; packing lists; cooking lists; client instruction lists; yadda, yadda, ya. All these lists are begun and completed as soon as I land a catering order and the menu is agreed upon.

I do as much of the work in advance as what I can. Two weeks prior I had my catering tubs packed, and all the dry ingredients for my 9 Slab crusts were measured, sifted together, covered and sitting in 9 bowls on our dining room table. One week in advance all the crust fats (Crisco & butter) were measured with butter sliced and packaged w/ Crisco per recipe and kept chilled in the fridge. Same approach was used for the filling ingredients. On Tuesday (a day off from the office) I cranked out 4 Slab Pies and froze them; Wednesday after work I made 3 more to freeze, and Thursday after work I finished by baking the final 2.

A gross oversight was when it dawned on me I'd neglected to think about a thawing timetable because I'd never frozen pumpkin pie before. Ergo, the SOS sent out to this community.

At 9 pm Thursday evening I pulled my 9 pies out of the freezer and put them into the refrigerator. Upon checking them at 5 am, they were still pretty cold and firm in their middles so they were removed from the refrigerator to await delivery at room temp. I dropped the 9 pies off at our Senior Center about 7:30 am along with slicing and garnishing instructions since I was subbing at a financial office 20 miles south of town and couldn't hop back over on my lunch break to help with any of the plating this month. Thus, the pies had an additional 5 hours to sit at room temp, and the ladies who cut and plated at 12:30 pm said they were perfect. They added dollops of whipped cream on top that were sprinkled with hand-grated nutmeg plus a baked pie crust leaf was placed on each portion in addition to either a red, white or blue hard candy star to honor the 216 guests who'd signed up for the Veteran's Day Memorial celebration this year. I was at my office desk at 8:25 AM and worked there until 5 o'clock pm.

REALIZE, though, that I am still digging out of my kitchen! I can keep up with loading items that go into the dishwasher to run whenever full, but I let dirty hand dishes accumulate until after my deadlines. I crashed Friday night right after supper; began major cleanup yesterday; and will finish up today.

Note that it will require a couple more days for my body aches & pains to subside! Rolling out so much pie crust is not a good position for my back, but w/ some Tylenol it'll eventually recover. lol.

I have OFTEN thought what a dyn-O-MITE catering company this group of forum folks would make. Can you imagine what we could create and sell if we all lived in the same town? That thought boggles my mind! But in reality, you help and have repeatedly helped me considerably in the past. I know recipes from this site are tried and true and will go over every single time. It's amazing how close technology can bring such far-flung individuals. A big thank you to one and all!


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