In The Kitchen

A Cajun Kick

2011 May: A Cajun Kick

Cajun-inspired dishes add flair to traditional Italian menus Cajun-Creole cooking is hot (as in trend, but also because customers are taking to spicy-heat dishes like never before). So why not jump on the bandwagon and play along? I am sure your customers will love the variety. Some of the specialities of New Orleans in particularMore »

2011 May: Dough Doctor

2011 May: Dough Doctor

Dough Doctor Mix it Up The Dough Doctor explains mixing time, oven decisions By Tom Lehmann What will happen if I mix my dough less than the normal time? A: If you mix your dough in the 15- to 20-minute range, you probably won’t see much change in either the dough or the finished pizza.More »

2011 April: SOURCING FRESH INGREDIENTS

2011 April: SOURCING FRESH INGREDIENTS

When Chris and Kate Saville opened The Flatz Company in Wyckoff, New Jersey, about a year ago, they knew they wanted to use fresh ingredients. They just didn’t know where to find them. “It took a lot of trial and error and calling people,” says Chris, who is from England and did not have foodserviceMore »

2011 April: I CRY FOR YOU

2011 April: I CRY FOR YOU

While there are many varieties of onions, the four types most commonly used in just about every restaurant are: yellow, Spanish, red and scallions (also know as green onions). When we get into fine-dining restaurants, however, the usage expands to include more exotic onions such as Maui sweet, Vidalia, Walla Walla, cippoline, pearl, shallots andMore »

2011 April: Ground Days

2011 April: Ground Days

Good, old-fashioned hamburger has adorned pizza across America for decades now. Using ground beef is simple, but bear in mind that there are different levels of leanness to consider when purchasing the ingredient. The leaner you go, the more expensive it gets. It’s important to figure out how to cross-utilize all the ingredients on yourMore »

2011 March: Seafood Pasta – Fruits of the Sea

2011 March: Fruits of the Sea

Frank McCarron, general manager/ chef at Portino’s Fresh Italian in Valley Center, California, wanted to freshen up his menu. So he decided not to introduce a new type of pizza, but instead opted to incorporate seafood pasta specials. “Seafood pasta spices up the menu and offers variety for customers,” says McCarron. At Portino’s, seafood pastaMore »

2011 March: Spicy Alternative

2011 March: Spicy Alternative

What exactly is soppressata? In a nutshell, it’s a form of dry- cured salami. A specialty of southern Italy, it is traditionally made using pork (beef is used on occasion). The basic seasonings include cracked red pepper and garlic. Depending on who is making it, some versions are hotter than others (in other words, moreMore »

2011 March: My Bad

2011 March: My Bad

We all make mistakes (ever forgot a birthday or anniversary?). Usually we can make amends in some fashion (roses? dinner out?) and life goes on. In the business we are in, mistakes can cause a deeper problem –– like a customer not coming back –– so we strive to get it right the first timeMore »

Artichokes: All Choked Up

2011 March: All Choked Up

Sure, pepperoni, onions and mushrooms will always be beloved pizza toppings. But as patrons’ palates evolve, so does their desire for trendy toppings. Filling this of-the-moment-ingredient spot is the artichoke. The artichoke is a member of the thistle or sunflower family. While it is a formidable plant to tackle, the edible “heart” provides a nutty,More »