Sunday, November 20, 2011

Why Choose A proffesional Caterer.

I can't believe it's nearly a year since i posted here , very bad but then again we have been busy ,
 i often wonder how food bloggers get the time to cook , sit , eat and then write a blog about what they are cooking , well done to them , must start following some !!
Anyway I'm going to try and make an effort on these dark nights and start passing on some of my recipes , i might not have photo's of them all but i will try . the main reason for this blog is well i suppose it's to let me have a wee rant and let off a bit of steam and off course let you know just how professional we are here at The Crest Catering Company.
Over the last few weeks and also i suppose because things are getting tight for other establishments we have noticed an increase in non registered caterers here in the Northwest , that is to say everyone seems to be flippen doing it , now that's all well and good everyone is entitled to make a living and I'm the first man to congratulate someone on their success and give advice when asked or where needed , however when it is starting to effect my business then I'm going to start to bring it to the public's attention.

Here at The Crest Catering Company we have full  E.H.O. approval , that is to say we have a H.A.C.C.P. plan in operation , we can trace every single product , we store, cook, cool or serve food to the highest of standards ,there are enough fridges in my kitchen to run a small hotel ..... when required we hire refrigerated vehicles at no extra cost to our clients.
Every event is cooked , supervised , served and guaranteed by myself.
In the history of my Company we have never let a client down , disappointed or God forbid had a case of someone being ill from our food , hangovers yes but that's out of my hands !
We serve or food on real plates , use real knives & forks not paper crap , butter , sauces , dips are never served in plastic sachets and dare i say it tartare sauce is home made.... it annoys me so much to see jars of tartare sauce in a kitchen , it is the most basic of things to make !!!
We have received nothing but praise over the years for quality , service and value for money.

We also have Full... and i use the term Full Public & Employers  Liability insurance , that is to say that in the event of anything happening while we are at your event then your covered and me too !!
We pay our tax's too that's another sore point nothing like a VAT bill to bring it all back to reality , but then it's all part of the deal , you pay me , i pay the government and they pay the bond holders ... oh something wrong there but you get the drift , all our prices include VAT , we can give you a breakdown no problem at all and that's when you will see real value for money.

So to finish off  because i have to go deliver a rocky road cake to a charity event , think about this , when you are having an event should it be a Family Party , Wedding or Corporate Catering do you want The Professionals to do it Or Mickey Mouse......... ask a few questions just to see what you are really getting and better still is it really what you want ! ..... talk soon , next blog will be a recipe......!/thecrestcateringcompany

Thursday, December 30, 2010

End of year wrap up !

well folks it's the 30th of December and the end of another year here at The Crest Catering Company. We had an eventful year and good in some ways and bad in others. We began with the very disappointing 7UP Christmas on ice , we rented a food stall for the duration of the event and unfortunately with ,weather , budget , X factor and the general non interest of the public it turned out to be a Snow Show !! if you'll pardon the pun , we nearly lost the business over it and reflecting on the accounts we are still paying for it. January also sadly saw the Death of one of our Customers here at the B&B, Willie Doherty a native of Donegal, and living in Dublin ,he and his family have stayed with us twice a year since we opened in 2001 , sadly missed. February saw us catering for the Gartan winter school and a great weekend was had by all , moving into what was to be the busy season we kept the catering company going with events, festivals and private functions , the B&B lay empty as hotels which are supported by banks slowly squeezed us out of the market and passed on cheap prices and just as cheap service to the customers that were willing to accept it !! not easy competing with €25.00 per person for sure. Joan & Peter another of our loyal clients paid us a visit this year with a 10 day stay and we are glad to welcome them again next year , we spoil them to no end and always a pleasure. The Cookery school held it's own again with renewed competition in the market but they say that is good for business , just remember folks there is only one Chef Martin Anderson ! No matter how cheap the class is it's the knowledge that you are learning from one of the most experienced chefs in the country that counts ! The summer saw us catering for the Blue Stack Shoes Festival in the Frosses , what a weekend that turned out to be over €150,000 raised for charity in total and i can safely say it was a long time since we worked as hard , the rally came and went and onto the Ramelton festival another great weekend was had by all , Churchill fair was also one of our regular events and i even judged a cake making display , was great to see the locals support the event and such a high standard. In the late summer we teamed up with Hillsborough farm shop ramelton!/pages/Hillsborough-Farm-Shop/107100602661860and with their help i have secured a weekly slot on , a wee 15 minute slot on the breakfast show with John Breslin which has turned out to be very popular and now running for nearly an hour every Wednesday morning, it is very relaxed with me giving out cookery tips and john hosting the questions and keeping me on my toes , mostly making sure i don't curse !!
We also started producing our own products for retail sale starting with scones, crumbles and moving into the lasagna, shepherds pies, soup , taco mince and hot pot market , with a few loyal customers we intend to expand to a large market in the new year, to be fair with out their support i could have seen the Catering Company close this year but we have struggled through once again. The winter seen saw the B&B still stay quiet with one local hotel offering rooms at €22.00 per person if you stayed 2 night , get a grip folks it is impossible to offer those rates and service , people want to come to Donegal to be treated right not shite !! how can you offer a cup of coffee and toast to someone and tell them that they are having a good time !!
We once again displayed our wares at the Taste Of Donegal Food Festival , this year how ever the event was larger and with a lot more stalls , disappointing too as there was more of a commercial air about it than a show case of local artisans !
Cookery classes in September saw a slowing of the market and with my weight loss programme i expected the classes to be busy with the introduction of a cook yourself thin class but at this stage the Banks, Fat cats and Pratts and scared everyone into staying at home and if you had any money they took it off you in tax's , fuel bills and inflated charges in the banks. T.D.'s came in for some abuse and they started to jump ship , getting their payoffs for being disappointed !! We worked out that if we received a T.D.'s salary for 1 year and their expenses that we could clear all our debt's, that includes redeem the mortgage for the B&B, Mobile Kitchen and tidy up the rest of the loose ends too !!
Winter again brought it's challenges with the adverse weather conditions and the general cancellation of bookings and classes.
 We saw a member of staff Karinka leave us to return home to Poland and we welcomed Sabine to the team here , a great photographer as well as worker and keeps me sane at times as does my mother who turned 70 this year and is always keeping me on the right track ! someone has to !!
So that's it all over for another year , i would like to thank all who supported us in good and bad times and we look forward to a good year next year , Happy new Year to you all. i kept the weight off too and look forward to losing more in the new year .

Monday, November 8, 2010

New products & What's Happening.

Well folks i have half on hour to wait for a customer before i start wrapping some of my new products so i thought i'd fill you in on what is happening next. Firstly we have two new cookery classes starting in the next few weeks , check out the link and get booking here we have posted the details of our Christmas cookery and Come dine With Chef Anderson classes. Bookings can be made by contacting me directly on 074 9122300 or Check out the youtube clip too , just a collection of photo's with the ad, that i made, a bit naughty to use it but we'll see how it goes.
Myself and John Breslin hosted a cook in last week for Highland Motors , the main renault dealer here in the north-west. I cooked Fillet of Beef diane, a bit retro was the phrase used but it is hard to beat the old classic dish's when cooking for a demo , cheese and garlic potatoes and bananas flamed in irish whiskey with local honey, we served 150 covers after the demonstration and everyone was well fed and well impressed !!
I have started to make my own lasagna, shepherd's pie, taco (spicy ) mince, apple crumbles, scones and chilli potatoes for retail sale and we are also supplying Cafe Calise and Mikes Diner with wholesale food products, Hillsborough Farm shop Ramelton and McGee's Butchers of the Letterkenny Shopping Centre have the ready made dish's and The Fruit& Vegetable stop at Kilross Junction stock my scones and crumbles ,there were a few teething problems at the start but the products are selling well now.I put a lot of work into these and every dish is made by myself , wrapped and packed here in the kitchen of the Careting Company.We have designed our own labels and as far as i can see i am the only person in the north-west using local produce to prepare these dish's so well done me for supporting the local suppliers! Ok my guest is here, keep an eye out for the facebook updates and more from me next week.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Five years already

well it seems i have neglected the blog for a bit so here is another wee update, i still have the weight off and keeping control of it so far, not easy when you are on the go all the time.
the cookery school is open 5 years now , hard to believe and one of the students for the last class was one of the students for the first so that was nice, i don't even think she realised that, must tell her and give a wee gift, on the cookery school train of thought i see that there are 2 more place in letterkenny getting geared up to start teaching classes, there was a time when it was hard to find one , now all you have to do is roll down the window of the car stick your hand out and you will hit one passing. It is difficult out there to keep ahead of everyone but we are one of the better schools here in the northwest , I have 26 years of catering experience behind me and i've seen and done a lot. One of the classes is actually going to be taught by someone that came to me , so remember you are getting the recipes 3rd hand !! I stole them first !!
We have started to produce some of our own foods for retail and catering sale, the meat comes from Hillsborough Farm Shop, Ramelton, a family run business and after a shakey start we are now working well together, they are the sponsers of the radio show that i'm on every wednesday morning on highland radio , we will be hosting an evening too soon at the shop to show of thier christmas products and show case some of mine. ok that's all for tonight , will try to keep blogging through the week.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

scones quality weight loss

hi folk's just anther wee blog to keep you all informed on what is happening with the catering company and the weight loss programme , firstly the positive , i have lost now 2st ,or if you like, 28lb or just over 12kg so far since april 2010. all this is down to hard work and healthy eating and support from sandra at Slimming World , letterkenny. As i said before we will be starting cook yourself thin cookery classes in mid september , not so much about the dish's but the method of cookery , low fat with loads of taste , we will try to get you off all those ready prepered meals and back into the kitchen , starter, main courses , baking and of course desserts. i intend to have at least anothe 1st , 5kg off before that !! here's hoping !
The other issue i have is regards my homemade scones. i Make the scones here everyday for the next day  or as the market requires , if you don't sell them then i won't keep on making more and flood the market , we are very dissapointed that one of our stores has decided to go back to selling the frozen , mass produced , inferior , downsized and budget priced scones, can the public really have that bad a taste that they went for these instead of mine ?? when in the same breath and the same week a new outlet that we began supplying sold 160 fresh scones !! we do not use additives , preservitaves and each scone is made by my good hand , using quality ingrediants under health board approved conditions !! as they say however onwards and upwards, to those of you who enjoy them , we thank you very much and those of you haven't had any yet , well seek them out and give them a try , you will discover the difference, thank you.

Monday, June 28, 2010

New Cookery Classes Announced - Cook Yourself Thin with Chef Martin Anderson

Cook Yourself Thin Cookery Course
Over the last 6 months i have gone on a stictly "cook yourself thin " regime with the aid of slimming world, it's a slow on going process and so far i have lost 21lb (10kg). Every week slowly losing a little , the basis of this diet is cutting completly down on your fat and sugar intake but at the same time eating plenty of good , fresh and local food . At first i lost nothing and it was only when i started to write down what i ate  that i discovered i was eating so much of my own good home cooking and scones , when i adjusted this the weight started to fall off. As a result of this sucess we are announcing the introduction of a cook yourself thin cookery class , 2.5 hours of intense cooking and recipes , we will point out the correct methods of cooking low fat but tasty food, give advice on where , when and how to prepare meals for yourself and your family , giving helpful hints on getting the best flavours from what usually people consider bland foods, keep an eye out for my face book updates.

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Crest Catering Company News, Recipes and Ready-to-go Products

Once again it is a glorious day here in Donegal, we are very excited here
at the moment , we are in the final stages of setting up our retail products. As you know our scones are available in several retail outlets here in the Letterkenny area, following on from that we are moving into the prepared food's market.We will start off with prepared lasagne,chicken tikka ,rice ,stuffing and of course the breads and scones.Our labels are designed , packaging is approved and the customers are waiting ! keep an eye out for your updates on face book and twitter for how we are progressing. Any of you have any special requests for recipes or cookery tips, simply ask and you shall receive.
Have a great weekend one and all.