Catering Central

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

Catering Checklist

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If you have an upcoming event and require catering services, there are a few things to get in order before making the call. This blog post serves to educate you on the information you should have on hand when you seek out a catering company, so that you can have the best experience possible.

 

  • Numbers
    First things first: How many people will be at your event? In order to get a handle on what the caterers will do, we need to know how many mouths will be in attendance. Let’s avoid that awkward moment where there’s not enough food at an event!
  • Services
    Do you want hors d’oeuvres, brunch, lunch, casual, or fine dining? Do you need tables, chairs, linens, a buffet, or a sit-down meal? If you’re not sure about what you need, explain the nature of the event to us, and we can help you prepare accordingly through our experienced suggestions.  
  • Budget
    Have an idea of what you’d like to spend, but be flexible and realistic. At Catering Central we provide value for money, balanced with quality service, so keep that in mind when planning your budget. You may also need help with factoring in peripheral costs that you haven’t considered – give us a call so we can help you know what kind of funds are necessary for your event!

  • Location
    Knowing the location helps us give you an accurate quote. Also, a map/layout of the venue helps our team plan the flow of the event, and stay efficient with service.

 

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!

Market Update for May

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Pacific Produce regularly releases an overview pertaining to which produce is in season, as well as market updates relates to prices and availability of crops. This week on the blog we’ll give you a quick rundown of what kinds of changes you’ll see in stores and markets near you. For full details, see the documents posted below.

What’s abundant:
Now is the time to grab some cucumbers, zucchini, yellow squash, green bells, green onions, eggplant and tomatoes. They’re in abundance and the prices are low! Melons are also getting sweeter and are at a great price point.

What’s struggling:
Organic greens – insect activity has ruined many crops. Brussels sprouts are also in low supply and will get very expensive. Chinese garlic and bush berries are also having a hard time.

What’s seasonal:
Green almonds, California avocados, California asparagus, green garlic, English peas, snap peas, fava beans,romano beans, local herbs, mini nasturtiums, baby leeks, ramps, fragrant rose petals, purple artichokes, fiddle head ferns, stinging nettles, green garlic, pea greens, spring onions, purple asparagus, black grapes, field grown rhubarb (WA).

To find out what kind of magic we work with produce at Catering Central, take a look at the menus on our website – or call us today on (650) 961-3300. We cater parties in Sunnyvale (94085), provide Catering Services in Mountain View and take care of all kinds of Private Event Catering in the San Francisco Bay Area.

MARKET REPORT 4-19-161

MARKET REPORT 4-19-162

Homemade Salad Dressing

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Dressing a fresh salad with homemade dressing is a surefire way to impress your friends and family, also also just increase how much you’re loving your salad. From the simplest, everyday dressing to something a little fancier for guests, we have some ideas for you;

Basic Balsamic Vinaigrette
You can wing this recipe with 2 parts olive oil, 1 part Balsamic and a squeeze of lemon. If you’re looking for something more in depth, take a look at this.

Ranch
Check out this recipe for a healthier version of your favorite ranch. Here’s a dairy-free version, too.

Italian
This dressing is a clear crowd-pleaser, why not try it today?

Making your own dressing will taste better, it’s healthier for your body and you can customize the ingredients to your special dietary requirements. You might decide to give up the store bought dressing altogether – but you’ll never know unless you try making your own.

Grow Your Own Tomatoes

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Believe it or not, even in San Francisco’s gloomy summer/fall weather, you can still grow amazing tomatoes in your garden or on your deck. We have a few tips to help you plant tomatoes in your yard, and have them flourish:

For small spaces, get a hanging pot
The Topsy Turvy is an “As seen on TV” type gadget  – yet it absolutely works wonders for growing tomatoes in an urban farming situation.

Go for grape, pearl and cherry varieties
Since it’s harder to grow larger tomatoes, give your crop its best chance by producing smaller individual tomatoes.

Get safe seeds
Don’t want to support Monsanto? Here’s a blog post by Small Footprint Family about where to buy Non-GMO Seeds.

Provide a lot of water
Since tomatoes are full of moisture, they obviously need a lot of water to grow. Make sure you give them what they need to thrive.

You will be taken aback when you taste a fresh, home grown tomato in your salad – compared to something store bought. Home grown produce packs a flavor punch that is unheard of, provides us the therapeutic benefit of gardening and protects you from ingesting harmful chemicals.

Baseball Burgers

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Baseball season just wouldn’t be complete without burgers and garlic fries. At Catering Central we take our burgers pretty seriously – making our own buns fresh from high protein bread flour. These buns are legit – crafted with organic milk and sugar.

Our beef patties are hand made from hormone-free Niman Ranch. For something a little extra, we mix in caramelized onions to seal the moisture in our patties. Served with quality cheese and handmade aioli, these burgers are just as much an experience as a meal.

Garlic fries are a Giants stadium staple, and can be easily made at home with just a few fresh ingredients. We found a San Francisco Garlic Fries recipe here at Bon Appetit. These are the perfect side to your peanuts and Cracker Jacks.

Baseball season is a celebration of summer, friendship, family and food – all through a shared enjoyment of the great American pastime. Call us today on (650) 961-3300 if you’d like to celebrate with our delicious food.

Middle Eastern Menu

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Middle Eastern food is marked by signature spices and tastes that ignite the senses. Today on the blog, we are featuring recipes for our Palak Paneer, Pulao Rice and Falafels – a flavorful meal that will make your mouth water.

Palak Paneer is made by sweating onions and tomatoes, then adding dry ingredients (Curry Leaves, Fennel Seeds, Garam Masala Powder, Chili Powder, Turmeric Powder, Coriander Powder, Fenugreek) to form a paste. It is really important that the paste stays moist during this process. Once the paste is ready, add a generous amount of fresh spinach leaves and water. Cook this for mixture for a good 45 minutes (or longer) until the spinach has become almost saucy. If you’re feeling it, add some garbanzo beans or peas. Add a touch of cream, salt and pepper to taste and… voila! It’s finished.

Now, for the perfect falafel! Start by soaking fresh garbanzos overnight. Puree the garbanzos, adding onion, garlic, parsley and cilantro – also pureed. Mix in the dry ingredients; cayenne, coriander, cumin, cardamom, baking powder, and all-purpose flour. With all ingredients combined, roll the mixture into a paste and coat with sesame seeds. Deep fry the falafel until they’re golden brown and cooked through.

Pulao Rice is a vegetarian side made with clarified butter (ghee) onions, saffron rice, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom seeds and golden raisins. Serve this rice beside the paneer and felafel – and you have a meal to impress. Call us today on (650) 961-3300 if you’re interested in having us make this feast for you!

Building Staff Culture with Food

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If you are looking for a way to build your staff team, look no further than sharing a meal. Many workplace leaders will occasionally provide food in the break room, without fully realizing that the act of breaking bread together is so much more powerful. There is a big difference between eating together vs. eating alone.

Having your team join for a meal will solidify their relationships simply because you are changing their routine, and hopefully making happy memories in the process. As their boss, showing appreciation through your actions speaks volumes to the value you place on your staff members. Morale is raised via appreciation, and you know that a happy team is a more productive team.

Where possible, make the meal during the regular time your staff would work. If your crew is unable to get together during the work day, try putting on a breakfast before the day begins or dinner when the work day is done. If you’re going for a time outside of work hours, limit “shop talk” so that your team has a chance to talk about other things. You also don’t want people to dread coming together, so keep it light.

Remember that celebrating the little things will mean a lot to your staff. Your effectiveness as a leader is marked by your willingness to go the extra mile for those helping to make the company’s vision work on a day-by-day level.

Best Brunch in the Bay

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Weekends just aren’t the same without a plate of eggs, bacon, hash browns and pancakes. The traditional American breakfast is so good that it’s mostly reserved for our favorite days of  the week – so you should make the most of this delicious meal!

Here are our top 5 brunch picks for the San Francisco Bay Area:

  1. Breakfast at Tiffany’s (2499 San Bruno Ave, SF)

Everything you could want in a brunch, with a price tag that is just as satisfying as the meal. Classic American eats, featuring tater tot skillets and an omelette menu that you’ll want to work your way through week by week.

  1. St Francis Fountain (2801 24th St, SF)

Perfect brunch for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike, with the added bonus of being able to purchase 90s collectible trading cards and candy.

  1. Christie’s Restaurant (245 California Dr, Burlingame)

Right by the San Mateo Event Center, stop in at Christie’s before you head to an event this summer. Basic American brunch, made with love.

  1. Toast Eatery (1601 Polk St, SF; 3991 24th St, SF; 1748 Church St, SF)

With 3 locations in the city, Toast Eatery boasts a wide range of breakfast scrambles, omelettes and other deliciousness. Vegans can even enjoy the fresh tofu scrambles available.

  1. Universal (2814 19th St, SF)

New American breakfast options, with mimosas to boot. Enjoy the atmosphere of this place in the Mission, tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the main neighborhood center.

Try one this weekend!

Passover

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Today is the start of Passover (Hebrew: Pesach), an important yearly celebration for the Jewish people. Commemorating the liberation of the Jewish people from slavery in Egypt, Passover seders use food to narrate the story, so that the coming generations will understand their heritage.

The event starts with wine, a symbol of joy and happiness. When drinking wine and eating matzah (unleavened bread), the consumers traditionally recline to represent freedom. There follows a ritual hand-washing and dipping food in salt water. After that, the guests break matzah and use the larger half to hide as the ‘afikomen’ (they hide this for a child to find, and they win a prize).

A number of food courses follow, each explaining the plight of the Jewish people. A feast is served, beginning with a hard boiled egg dipped in salt water. Typical foods for the passover feast include; matzah ball soup, beef brisket, roasted vegetables, macaroons and flourless cake.

Passover is a prime example of how food can be used to link communities throughout the generations. Food is more than just fuel for our bodies – it’s the glue that holds our loved ones together.

 

Easter Menu

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With Easter is just around the corner, you might be planning a party to celebrate with your friends and family. For the week of Easter, we are serving a new Spring Menu fresh from our kitchen to your table.

Starting with salads, this menu features butter lettuce, mixed greens and baby spinach topped with all kinds of exciting grains, nuts, cheeses and vegetables. If you have a taste for candied pecans, quinoa, red onions and cherry tomatoes – our baby spinach salad is for you.

Entrees come packed with ham, chicken and beef. If you haven’t tried our brisket yet, you simply must. Slow cooked for hours until the moment of perfection, this tender beef will have your guests coming back for more (that’s if you decide you’re willing to share).

When it comes to sides, you can’t go wrong with grilled corn. Nothing says, ‘warmer weather’ quite like corn on the cob! Add grilled seasonal vegetables, like eggplant, zucchini and asparagus spears – and you have yourself a delicious meal.

EASTERMENU15Call us today on (650) 961-3300 to lock in your Easter menu.