Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Anne & JB Wedding at Hoffman Haus

Check out this beautiful Bride in Boots! Better Images on the link.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

At-Home Brunch Reception

At-Home Brunch Reception

I had a great time creating the food for this photo shoot. I am always proud to be associated with Tricia Hamil of Viridian Designs and I am thrilled to know Wendy Poole, Denise Cornell,of Thompson Poole Photography and Sandy of PaperRoot.Please follow the link (At Home Brunch Reception) at the top of this post and make a comment to help us win!

Katie & Chris

We had a wonderful weekend catering the Rehearsal Dinner and the Wedding for Chris and Katie. The Rehearsal was held at Zanzenberg which is in a historical building located in Center Point. This is a lovely venue for small groups (100-125) with a great outside space as well.

Viridian Designs provided quaint arrangements in ball jars and wooden boxes that were perfect for this venue.

In addition to Smoked Brisket we served Cornbread Salad, King Ranch Macaroni & Cheese, Assorted Relishes and Cole Slaw with Peach Cobbler Martinis with Vanilla Ice Cream for dessert.

The Wedding was at Riven Rock Ranch in Comfort. The bride chose a chocolate brown accented with green and white for an understated elegant palette.CarteWheels served a plated meal of Beef Tenderloin Medallions, Bacon Wrapped Shrimp Skewers, Jalapeno Mashed Sweet Potatoes, Baby Green Beans with Pancetta, and Dinner Rolls & Herb Butter.

The classic florals were of course from Viridian Designs and the cakes from Sophie's Choice Bakery.
Katie baked her famous Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies and offered Diet Coke and Lime as a parting gift for her guests.
Thirst quenchers included Peach Champagne, Sangria and Arnold Palmers all presented in glass barrels.

The Happy Couple

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

CarteWheels Caterers' Open House

We celebrated completeing our 20th year in business with an Open House on March 27, 2010. With the help of Tricia Hamil of Viridian Design Studio our store was transformed into four main themes. Our Pretty in Pink Sweets Table featured a beautiful wedding cake by Sophie Lochte of Sophie's Choice Bakery along with pink and tan candies, housemade pink Marshmallows and French Nutella Macarons. This table also offered a Cactus Pear Lemonade in adorable small bottles with straws.

We had an Asian Station featuring Momofuku's Steamed Buns with Pulled Pork and Cucumber Pickle, a Pan Asian Salad served in Pink Takeout Boxes with Chopsticks, Coconut Chicken in China Spoons and Lemongrass Beef in Lettuce Leaves with Sticky Peanut Sauce.
At the Latin Station we served Beef and Sweet Potato Skewers w/ Chimichurri Sauce, Blac Bean and Corn Salad in Chile Lime Cones with Guacamole and Chile Pearls, and Shrimp Campechana in Martini Glasses.

My personal favorite of the evening was the Paris Cafe Station where we served a Wild Hibiuscus Champagne Cocktail, Frisse Salad with Lardons,Tiny Croutons and Quail Egg, Watermelon Cube with Feta Cheese and Balsamic Syrup, and Gaufrettes topped with Smoked Pork Tenderloin and Carrot Salad.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Wedding Trends

I love weddings! I’m not talking about the weddings of my mother’s generation, where you served mints and nuts, punch and wedding cake. These days Brides are setting trends and creating unique events that reflect the personalities of the couple. The old style “formula” receptions are being replaced by ever changing tastes and fashion. Keeping up with these trends is a full time job which requires reading wedding blogs, magazines and anything else I can get my hands on to anticipate the needs of my clients.

One trend that has been around for a while but is still going strong is to provide a Sweets Table which features anything from apothecary jars to simple glass cylinders or compotes filled with color coordinated candy, with silver spoons or scoops and glassine or paper bags for guests to fill. In addition to the candy we are sometimes presenting Petite Desserts on trays, Truffle Pops, French Macaroons and Cupcake Towers all arranged in sophisticated but simple presentations. We are also seeing the traditional Groom’s cake being replaced by a favorite dessert of the Groom. Milk and Warm Chocolate Chip Cookies, Krispy Kreme Donuts, Star Crunch Cookies, Peach Pie and Cheesecake have all made appearances at recent weddings.

Wedding beverages have also evolved from Punch , Coffee and Highballs to Signature Cocktails that usually continue the color scheme and offer another design element to the reception. We love the Champagne Infusion Stations where guests can flavor their Champagne with a variety of Syrups, Fruit and even Hibiscus Blossoms. Non Alcoholic Beverages need not be relegated to the Punch Bowl or Pitcher. Lemonades, Fruit Juices and Teas allow for another fun presentation using large barrels and cute labels.

Comfort Foods are still strong especially in the new economy. We are taking familiar favorites, upgrading the ingredients and presenting them in out of the ordinary fashion. A childhood favorite Chicken Pot Pie can be updated to include Artichoke Hearts or even changed to Lobster Pot Pie and served in tiny individual ramekins, or demitasse cups. Macaroni and Cheese, Mashed Potatoes or Risotto can be elevated to “Party Food” status by serving in a Martini Glass and accompanied by an assortment of toppings for customizing by the guests. Sliders have been around for a while but they have grown to include Crab Cakes, Pulled Pork and Lamb. Any favorite food can become party fare as long as the presentation is fresh and unique.

Brides will often feature a variety of Ethnic Cuisines within the reception menu. This allows you to have a diverse menu that will keep guests interested and taste buds piqued. Some popular station ideas are Latin, Asian, American Graffiti, Paris Café, Mediterranean Tapas, Schnitzel, Whistle Stop Café, and New Orleans Jazz.

The fun thing about these stations is that they are usually interactive with foods being prepared at the station, which creates enticing aromas. At the Asian Station we utilize colored takeout boxes with chopsticks, china spoons and we can even order fortune cookies with customized fortunes. The Whistle Stop Café Station features Fried Green Tomatoes with Spicy Remoulade Sauce and Bacon along with Pulled Pork Sliders with Cole Slaw. American Graffiti Station combines Shoestring Potatoes, Sliders, and Milk Shake Shooters.

Another trend that we are seeing lately is the addition of Late Night Snacks. These can be anything from Beignets and Café au Lait to Corny Dogs, Sushi, or Breakfast Tacos. S’mores Stations have been very popular along with Ice Cream Sundae Bars. Again, anything goes, you are limited only by you imagination.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Got Candlelight?
With Valentine’s Day right around the corner I hope to inspire some advance “out of the box” thinking about how you approach this holiday. All too often this day sneaks up on us and we end up picking up a cute card, the ubiquitous boxed chocolates and a dozen roses at the last minute. This is better than nothing, but with a little forethought this Valentine’s Day you can create a more memorable experience.

Why not plan on a romantic dinner at home? Restaurants typically overbook on Valentine’s Day where your servers and the kitchen are stressed and may not provide the quality of service you are paying for. With minimal effort on your part you can enjoy a restaurant quality meal in the privacy of your own home.

The advantages to dining at home include:

*Economics, the cost of cooking at home or purchasing a meal to warm at home will be considerably less than if you go to a restaurant on Valentine’s Day. You can also afford to purchase a better bottle of wine or champagne for less than you would be paying if you went out.

*Avoiding the crowded restaurants allows for more intimacy with that special someone in a private setting.

*No need for a designated driver. Both of you can enjoy a glass of wine or champagne.

*Atmosphere, you can control the romantic setting at home. Make this evening special with table linens, flowers, candles and music. Some suggested artists, Chet Baker, Michael Buble or Diana Krall.

It is said that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach and this adage holds true for women as well. Creating a romantic “home” cooked meal will show your sweetheart how much you care. This meal doesn’t have to be complicated and I would encourage simple preparations that can be presented elegantly. For instance, Shrimp Cocktail, this old standby can be given a new twist by placing the cocktail sauce in a Martini glass and hanging the succulent shrimp on the edge of the glass, tail out. Garnish with a lemon wedge and something green, either a frill of curly leaf lettuce peeking out of the sauce or a simple sprig of flat leaf parsley.

For those who are culinary challenged, consider dinners for two prepared for takeout. These offerings are designed to impress with minimal effort on your part.

Don’t forget dessert! Although chocolate is regarded as the ultimate Valentine’s Day dessert, my tastes favor non chocolate desserts. At CarteWheels, we are offering a variety of sweets for takeout to include Red Velvet Cake Pops, Caramel Ganache Tartlets w/ Fleur De Sel, Chocolate Dipped Stemmed Strawberries, Decorated Sugar Cookies and Red Velvet Cupcakes.