Catering Central

Notes from the Chef!

1558 Gladding Ct. Milpitas CA 95035Call Us: (650) 961-3300

National Hot Dog Day

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Did you know that there are more than forty ways to make a hot dog? July is national hot dog month, though the official “hot dog day” changes every year. This year it was on the 17th, just a couple of weeks after the day hot dogs seem to shine their brightest – the fourth of July. So, what makes a good hot dog?

(1) A good sausage
Technically, any sausage will do the trick – but which ones are the best? For nostalgia’s sake, basic packaged hot dogs from the supermarket have your number, but going gourmet is probably what you’re looking for as an adult.

(2) The right bun
You can top load, side load, or even poke a big ‘ole hole down the middle of your hot dog bun. White, wheat, or brioche – your bun sets the stage for your dog.

(3) Toppings
This is where things get real! There are so many variations of toppings, from as basic as relish and onions, to as crazy as mac n’ cheese. Google “Types of Hot Dogs” and you’ll be amazed at the results.

(4) Condiments
Ketchup and mustard will always be classic hot dog condiments, but remember to always ‘dress the dog – not the bun.’

At Catering Central we know that hosting a party requires much more than just preparing food. We prepare, transport, heat, serve, and clean up after food. We’re sure you’d agree that your role as the host of an event would be better utilized mingling and directing, rather than worrying about the food. Let us take care of that for you! We do Private Party catering in the San Francisco Bay Area, Corporate Catering in Silicon Valley, and events all the way from Mountain View to San Francisco – call us today on (650) 961-3300.

Bastille Day

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This Friday is Bastille Day, the French national holiday. A time of celebration and culture, Bastille Day traditionally includes parades, dances, fireworks, and meals shared with others. As a nod to the delicious cuisine of France, we’re sharing some French recipes on the blog today.

  1. Our Favorite French Onion Soup Recipe by Epicurious
    What’s not to love about a piping hot bowl of French Onion Soup, covered in toasted, bubbly Gruyere? If you’re invested enough to make your own, check out this recipe. If you’d rather leave it to others, go to Chez Maman in San Francisco.

  2. 22 Easy French-Inspired Recipes That Anyone Can Make by Delish
    Nutella crepes – need we say more? Well how do Chicken Cordon Bleu roll ups sound? Delicious! Check it out.

  3. French Recipes by Kidspot
    French cuisine isn’t just for the adult palate! French Toast and Chocolate Eclairs cater to a child’s sweet tooth, while providing some excellent lessons in culinary arts. If you’re feeling adventurous, why not make some macarons while you’re at it!

At Catering Central, we do everything from event catering in Redwood City (94602), to all kinds of catering services in Palo Alto (94303). Find out how our catering services are set apart from our competition, by seeing first hand, what we do best. Expect fresh, healthy food coupled with staff committed to excellence. Call us today on (650) 961-3300!

Fourth of July Parties

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The Fourth of July is just one week away! That gives you plenty of time to get your party sorted with patriotic decorations and recipes. Stores like Safeway, Target, and Walmart have a plethora of decorative items that you can use to create atmosphere – so here are some food and drink items that you can make to impress your guests.

(1) Fireworks Daiquiri by Food Network
Strawberries, coconut, and blue passionfruit flavor, all in a frozen drink? You’re welcome. This grown up beverage is perfect with a hot dog or burger in the sun.

(2) Hot Dog Bar
The all American classic – reimagined. Your guests can load up their own dog with toppings like; onion straws, relish, jalapenos, nacho cheese, peppers, chili, pepperoni – you name it! Go the extra mile and include regional suggestions like Chicago dogs, and Tex-Mex style.

(3) S’Mores Bar
Lay out your ingredients on a table, and use the grill to roast some marshmallows. Alternatively, you can make no-cook s’mores by using Nutella and Fluff.

(4) American Dipped Strawberries
Dip strawberries in white chocolate, and then dip the bottom third in blue sugar. Delicious, fresh, red, white, and blue!

At Catering Central, we cover all kinds of event catering, including but not limited to; private event catering in San Mateo (94497), private party catering in Sunnyvale (94088), and corporate catering in the San Francisco Bay Area. Pick up the phone and call us on (650) 961-3300.

Healthy Kids’ Birthday Party Ideas

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Childrens’ birthday parties are a great time to celebrate with decadent (read: sugary) treats, but we all know how sugar can send kids into a tailspin. By adding some balanced, healthier choices to your kids’ party food table, you’ll all have a better time – and hopefully fewer meltdowns. We have some ideas to keep healthier options fun:

(1) Rainbow Fruit
Use the natural rainbow of real fruit to create all kinds of fun. By carving out a watermelon or pineapple, you have a bowl that looks great and adds some whimsy. You can go to town with shapes and designs, but a simple fruit salad still looks awesome.

(2) Veggie Ideas by Daily Holiday Blog
From ladybug crackers to veggies made into boats, your kids won’t miss the additives when they see how awesome vegetables can look and taste. These ideas are kid-friendly in more ways than one!

(3) DIY Popcorn Bar
Provide cups of homemade, natural popcorn and have the kids add toppings like; nutritional yeast, semi-sweet chocolate, herbs and spices.

If you’d like to know more about the healthy recipes we prepare at Catering Central, call us today on (650) 961-3300. Your first step towards planning an event starts here – discussing budgets, numbers, and the vision you have for the event. Let’s work together on creating professional corporate catering in Silicon Valley (94301), and memorable private party catering in San Mateo 94402.

Preserving Fresh Herbs

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Most of us buy fresh herbs for specific recipes, using a couple of leaves or sprigs, then allowing the remainder wither in the fridge. To eliminate waste, and to save money on your grocery bills, you can preserve fresh herbs in the freezer, using a simple ice cube tray

  • Water Method
    For minimal damage, tender herbs like mint, parsley, and cilantro are great to freeze in water. Simply thaw and strain for later use, or keep some mint for tea.
  • Broth Method
    Herbs that you may use in soups and risottos can be frozen in broth. Anywhere you’d normally use broth and herbs are suitable for this method – you can even throw some frozen herb/broth ice cubes directly into your rice cooker along with your rice and liquid of choice.
  • Oil Method
    For sautes, stews, and roasts, freeze those herbs in olive oil. This is perhaps the most versatile of all the methods – you can capture the fresh taste of seasonal herbs and enjoy them all year long!

The beauty of hiring a catering company like ours is that you can enjoy the party with your guests, without so much as lifting a finger. If you’re seeking corporate, private, or wedding catering this summer (or beyond) – call us today on (650) 961-3300. We’re experts in corporate catering in San Mateo (94402), private party catering in the San Francisco Bay Area (94117) and everywhere in between!

Focus on Fruits

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Have you ever noticed how much better strawberries taste in the summer? When you buy and eat fruit seasonally, they’re so much more delicious than produce that is imported year-round. This summer, take advantage of the rainbow of fruits available in your local stores and farmers’ markets. Here are some tips on choosing the most flavorful fruits:

(1) Strawberries
Look for bright red berries, as local as possible. Better yet – go strawberry picking somewhere near you in the SF Bay Area .

(2) Blueberries
General rule of thumb: The darker the berry, the better it will taste. It doesn’t really matter what size the blueberry is, but avoid ones that are too soft.

(3) Cherries
Taste one if you can! For red cherries, choose dark colors. For Ranier, brown flecks are indicators of sugar accumulation – so they’ll probably be delicious.

(4) Watermelons
Your ideal watermelon should feel heavy for its size, and also a creamy-yellow splotch on the bottom where it has been resting on the ground.

(5) Mangoes
Judge a good mango by how it feels – it should be soft, but not squishy. Depending on the variety, a nice patch of red on the skin will indicate that the mango will be delicious.

This summer, call Catering Central for all your party needs. We can’t wait to talk with you about the vision you have for your event – let’s discuss everything from budget, to silverware, to the all important menu! We’ll take care of you, so you can have a great time with your guests. We do private party catering in Palo Alto (94302), wedding catering in Redwood City (94604), and event catering in San Jose (95101)! Call us today on (650) 961-3300.

San Francisco’s Best Ice Cream

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Now that the days are warming up, you might be looking for some stellar ice cream to get you through summer. San Francisco is a hub of new and different foods, as well as home to many classics that have been loved throughout the generations. We have a list of a handful of SF’s most highly rated ice creams for you to check out:

  • Humphrey Slocome
    Opened: 2008
    Most Famous Flavor: Secret Breakfast (Bourbon and cornflakes)
    If you’re adventurous, try: Peanut Butter Curry
  • Smitten
    Opened: 2009
    Most Famous Flavor: Tcho Chocolate
    If you’re adventurous, try: Strawberry White Balsamic (When it’s in season)
  • Mitchell’s
    Opened: 1953
    Most Famous Flavor: Filipino and Peruvian flavors – ube, lucuma, buko
    If you’re adventurous, try: Avocado
  • Bi Rite Creamery
    Opened: 2002
    Most Famous Flavor: Honey Lavender
    If you’re adventurous, try: Chamomile tea with lemon poppy crumble (seasonal)

You can enjoy all foods in moderation, as long as they’re part of a balanced diet. At Catering Central, we highly value food as a means of connection with others, and aim to give all of our clients a positive and satisfying experience with our services. If you’re looking for corporate catering in the San Francisco Bay (94111), private party catering in Sunnyvale (94086), or general catering in Mountain View (94040) – call us today on (650) 961-3300!

Current Flavor Trends

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Just like fashionable clothing, foods and flavors go through trends. A few years ago we saw bacon popping up in everything, followed by cupcakes taking over the treat space, then all kinds of pretzels, craft beers, and nitrogen-frozen ice creams. Are you wondering what kinds of flavors you’ll see this year? Here are some trend clues, so you can keep up with the Joneses.


  • Passionfruit
    A timeless favorite in many parts of the world (especially Australia) – fresh passionfruit is widely unavailable in the United States, which makes it an exotic taste for the American palate. Passionfruit’s bright color, flavor, and textured seeds help this fruit stand out from the crowd.
  • Za’atar
    A whole host of Middle Eastern spices, mixed with sea salt, sesame seeds, and sumac are a perfect crunchy seasoning for meats, bread, hummus, or vegetables.
  • Harissa
    This hot chili pepper paste has many culinary applications, including flavoring burger meat, chicken wings, salad dressings, and pasta.
  • Sorghum
    Ancient grains have been in vogue for a while, with quinoa being the star of the show for quite some time. Now it’s sorghum’s time to shine! It’s naturally gluten free, and tastes most like wheat – giving new options for those with gluten sensitivities.


At Catering Central, we do everything from event catering in Redwood City (94602), to all kinds of catering services in Palo Alto (94303). Find out how our catering services are set apart from our competition, by seeing first hand, what we do best. Expect fresh, healthy food coupled with staff committed to excellence. Call us today on (650) 961-3300!

Effects of Tech Office Catering

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The Bay Area is an international hub of technology startups, and as a result, many large companies form and grow here. As companies expand, they tend to provide meals to their employees to keep productivity – and employee morale – high. Local businesses, however, are seeing the impact of these in-house office lunches on their sales, as patrons stay at their desks.

While many local caterers have more of an opportunity to provide services to offices (often through third party companies, for better or worse) cafes, restaurants, and local lunch spots are seeing a vast decline in weekday lunch business. Not much can be done about this trend, but keep up with the demand in other ways – such as brick and mortar restaurants offering catering services as well. For those who work in offices without catering, or with an option of eating in or out, you can keep your local businesses in mind by helping them out with your patronage every now and again. Many of your city’s lunch spots have been around for a long time, and it would be a shame to see them close on account of the changing times.

We believe food plays a vital role in not only physical, but emotional health. Our social lives strengthen by building relationships over food, leading to a greater level of connectedness with the world around us. If you’re interested in having your next San Francisco Bay Area (94110, 94024) private or corporate event catered by a company working from this philosophy, call us today on (650) 961-3300. We can’t wait for your call!

Food Startups and the Little Guys

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Gone are the days where people connected directly with the caterer as the sole means of gathering business. Over the past few years many food startups have begun to corral a pool of catering services and help companies decide what kinds of food they serve their staff on a daily basis, which in and of itself is a solution to a problem. Yet, bigger picture, these online alternatives are severely affecting their offline counterparts.

With online accessibility ruling how people find vendors, it’s easy to forget the “little guys” and our dwindling margins when going through a third party system. One way you can help small businesses stay afloat is to cut the middle man and contact us directly when you need catering services. We’re ready to hear your vision for your event and match your budget with the highest quality foods and services from Catering Central. When you come directly to your caterer, more of your money makes it back to our business and we can keep bringing our best to the Northern California catering scene.

At Catering Central, we highly value food as a means of connection with others, and aim to give all of our clients a positive and satisfying experience with our services. We are passionate about supporting small businesses and keeping food fresh, seasonal, and local. If you’re looking for corporate catering in the San Francisco Bay (94111), private party catering in Sunnyvale (94086), or general catering in Mountain View (94040) – call us today on (650) 961-3300!