04.06.2013 personal chef tips, Recipes No Comments

Video: Tray Passed Appetizer Recipe

CCP Jeff Heavey and Ehow put together an excellent video that will show you how to make a tray passed appetizer that will blow your guests away! This quick and easy recipe uses buffalo mozzerella, delicious sausage, fresh oregano and grated parmesan cheese and the marinara sauce to bring together each of the flavor. Take a look at all of convivial catering’s ehow video series for more tips and a fantastic appetizer idea’s.

28.11.2012 Catering News 1 Comment

Holiday Catering Packages – Thanksgiving

While the Holiday season is a time for most to enjoy time with their family it is made possible by the hard workers that are out there sacrificing their time for the better of others.  It’s a time of year that is rarely taken for granted.

thanksgiving event dining hall

At Convivial Catering it is also a time that reminds each of our chefs of a particularly special event.  The family and friends that come together for better or worse and give appreciation to their own cooking.  When we look back we often recall special moments of relatives passing down the secrets of the holiday feast.  Aunt Fran’s slow and low cooked rosemary brined tequila, lime injected spatchcocked and braised turkey would be shared only with those inside the circle of trust.  The effort that went into those meals was noted, and it just makes us appreciate the enjoyment that our food brings our customers during the holidays.

When we came together to cook for the SD Womens Club’s thanksgiving event this year, there was an extra festive feeling in the air.  Preparing the bird and sides for 100+ plates was inspired as the meal invoked memories of holidays we spent with our families and recipes handed down.

We look forward to the christmas and holiday season.  The events are always fun and festive, the recipe’s are age old classics, possibly with a twist of our own, and the clients always seem to be in great spirits. Convivial Catering is now offer Catering Packages for large holiday events in our on site dining hall (shown above), as well as off site holiday event locations, all prepared at our state of the art kitchen in Bankers Hill kitchen.  

We are currently offering Turkey Roasts, Spiral Glazed Hams, a complete array of sides and can prepare any specific recipe that your guests would enjoy over these holidays.  Contact us with the number of guests and any ideas you might have and we can get right back to you with a delicious solution to your thanksgiving or holiday catering event needs.three turkeys prepared for the thanksgiving feast 2012

09.11.2012 Recipes 1 Comment

Holiday Catering tips: Thanksgiving Turkey Brine Recipe

Happy Holidays are almost upon us!  This can be a stressful event for those who insist on cooking for the family and friends.  While we would love to be the ones cooking for you (and we do this sort of thing everyday :)) we also want to give you a few tips that will make your holiday feast a lasting memory and being prepared is the best way to do this without stress.

We had our Chef’s come together and offer a few tips on brining a turkey to guarantee that is moist and delicious and we selected Chef Mike’s recipe as one that you can trust for your bird this year.  Keep in mind you can use this for any poultry and expect great results.

Chef Mike’s Magical Citrus Savory Brine

Convivial Catering’s Chef Mike Hein
has used this brine for years. Brining
a Turkey infuses flavor and helps the
Bird retain moisture for a Moist and
Delicious Thanksgiving Feast!
1 20# Turkey Thawed

2 T Coriander Seeds

1/2 Cup Chopped Garlic

2 T Juniper Berries

2 T Dried Thyme

8 Valencia Oranges Halved

2 T Black Peppercorns

1.5 Gallons Ice Water

1 Gallon Vegetable Stock

1.5 Cups of Kosher Salt

Warm 2 cups of stock and whisk in kosher salt. Combine with all other ingredients. Submerge Turkey and weigh down to fully immerse Turkey for 8-24 Hours. Cook Turkey in your favorite fashion. (Use Compound Butter under skin and stuff cavity with onion, garlic and herbs.)

Alternatively, if you have had enough of the cooking and cleaning already, we will be cooking for 100’s of people this coming Thanksgiving and if you would like to sit back, relax and let the food come to you, Please contact us.  We offer entire Thanksgiving meals at affordable prices with a quality that will not be beat!

Check back for more thanksgiving tips and hints as we will be continuing our series of Holiday catering tips throughout the end of the year!

25.09.2012 Catering Event No Comments

Convivial Catering and SD Women’s Club Open House

Convivial Catering and  San Diego Woman’s Club Open House!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012 from 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM (PDT)

Open House wine bottle

Please Join us for Delicious Food, Music, and Beverages in a Beautiful Historic Banker’s Hill Venue!

Convivial Catering has joined the Historic San Diego Woman’s Club “Over 120 Years of Philanthropy & Sisterhood” as its On-Site Caterer and we are hosting an Open House!  We will be serving some Delicious Samples of Chef Jeff’s and Convivial Catering’s Cuisine such as:

-Smoky Kalua Pork Sliders with Hawaiian Purple Slaw and Pineapple Infused Teriyaki on King’s Sweet Rolls

-Arugula Wrapped Beef Tenderloin Carpaccio with Shaved Parmagiana Reggiano and Tarragon Emulsion

-Jeff’s Five Cheese Truffled  “Mac N’ Cheese”

-Lobster Accented Polenta with Vermont Extra Sharp Cheddar and Herb Grilled Shrimp

Just to name a few of the delectable offerings.

Opera Patisserie will be providing a beautiful dessert display and we will have beverages and acoustic music provided by Skyline Union’s own Kevin Fleming!

The Club is Located in a Beautiful Historic Building in Banker’s Hill near Balboa Park at Third Avenue and Maple (2557 3rd Avenue San Diego, CA 92103). The Clubhouse is available as a venue for your next event!  Please Join Us as we celebrate this new relationship!

Eat, Drink, and Be Merry!

Please use our Eventbrite form below to RSVP in order to join us!

25.09.2012 Catering News No Comments

Convivial Catering partners with San Diego Womens Club.

All of us here at Convivial Catering are very excited to announce a new partnership with the San Diego Women’s Club!

We will be the official caterer for the members of this prestigious social club and are proud to work together with them.  While not everyone is aware of the club, it is steeped in tradition and has become a premier venue for memorable occasions including many beautiful weddings and philanthropic events that benefit the community.  Many of the events take place in the Main Hall which is connected to an outdoor patio, a dinette hall, as well as a well furnished foyer.  The 500 square foot kitchen is now the official kitchen of Convivial Catering as we look forward to building a great long lasting relationship with the membership and providing fine cuisine whenever the opportunity arises.

Outside the San Diego Women's Club

San Diego Women's club Catering hall

 

 

 

 

 

 

As our clients already know, Convivial Catering has been based out of a storefront  in Del Cerro with our office in Ocean Beach, and is now glad to announce their new location at the San Diego Women’s club.  The new address is:

Convivial Catering, 2557 3rd Avenue, San Diego, CA 92103 suite #B.

We are still fully equipped with the finest culinary tools and an A rating by the county health department.  While it is an exciting time for us we are also accepting the challenge of the relocation and the opportunity to impress our new clients.  Over the years this has become second nature as that is the focus of our business day in and day out.

A few more facts about our new location and partner The San Diego Womens Club:

– They are a Non-Profit community center, with a focus on community volunteerism.

– It is a Non-Partisan club and open to all women who are interested in joining a charitable organization

– Established 120 years ago

– There is no age requirement to join

– Live music, DJ’s and Bands are invited and permitted to play the main hall as a venue, or at your event.

– Alcohol is permitted when served by a licensed vendor

– The club can accommodate up to 357 guests at a time

For more information please visit the website for The San Diego Women’s Club Wedding Venue

 

29.07.2011 catering menus No Comments

Have you seen our catering Sample Menus?

Wow!  We finally have an amazing way for all of our customer’s to see the amazing array of cuisine that we are putting out for our clients every day.  Our sample catering menus have something for every taste and over the past 6 years of service to the area, we have chosen some of the best dishes to display our commitment to quality.

chicken and pesto baguette


While the ingredients may be listed for the most part, we implement techniques learned from years of experience all over the world and utilized to put the best food we can on your plate!  We have a corporate catering menu that has 40 different entree’s appetizers sides and salads for an easy choice for any corporate catering event opportunity.  They range from delicious curries, bbq, traditional italian, greek options and far more alternatives that will fit into your businesses budget.

Convivial conducts normal cooking demonstrations and classes and has posted a few menus from these events as well.  The idea is that clients learn from us and have the opportunity to try our exceptional recipes and techniques before diving into a full event.  This also provides a great way for us to get to know our clients and vice versa.  In the last demo we stunned our vendors and clients with Parmesan garlic risotto with pesto marinated shrimp and a bacon wrapped pork tenderloin with roasted apple calvados sauce along side 3 other courses, sides and a beautiful kahlua chocolate fondue.

Please take a second to look at a few of the delightful dishes that we have prepared in the past.  It’s a great way to come up with ideas for your own event, choose a menu of your own and to see what kind of cuisine we are prepared to bring to the table.

08.07.2011 BBQ catering, Catering News, Local San Diego No Comments

Chargers Catering Season

Caterers rooting for the football season missed out twice since tailgating is a top draw for quality BBQ catering. This 2011 season there are added concerns and local businesses everywhere believe the game must be played. Personal chefs and caterers are rooting for their businesses as well.  Considering catering events based around the sport drive revenues in the hundreds of millions of dollars to the catering industry, missing even half of the regular season could effect the bottom line dramatically.
In the past year it’s been struggles for the chargers and as the NFL trade talk deadlines come closer the entire nation becomes a bit more interested in the once far away concerns that the owners and players may not work this out. For fans this is devastating but it has a huge effect on other parts of our society. Economically the sport of professional football stimulates many other areas of the economy that many people might not think of. As a personal chef in San Diego I have many clients that are mainly interested in my skills off the field, as a BBQ chef. While they utilize my skills all year long, the tailgate is a specialty that is always booked on game day. For me it’s a great opportunity to spread the word about my business because the clients always have a policy of sharing and the food speaks for itself. Its a great source of spreading word of mouth marketing ( no pun intended) and i also keep a great client on a weekly rotation.
If the Players and owners in the NFL don’t come to an agreement to play next year, one implication will be about 8-10 home games that would normally be great catering jobs for a personal chef like myself. This is a good amount when it comes down to it at the end of the year. however I feel much worse for the fans that don’t get to enjoy my pulled pork or smoked asada taco’s, two favorites that any personal chef in the San Diego area NEEDS to know. These are also special events for a private party chef since they are always a very enjoyable time and each event has a unique environment that “i can recall distinctly making many games very special events.
Catering a tailgate party is something that I have taken great pride in. It takes the right tools, something that I have acquired after years of learning the trade. The smoker needs to be wheeled out early so that iti can be brought to the right temp and all your condiments and rubs need to be applied much earlier. another fact that any personal or bbq chef knows. The grill needs to be brought up to temperature as well for certain meats that aren’t being smoked. the second factor is the time of the game. This is going to dictate the type of food that is going to be served for the most part. The side dishes will be a fresh mix for a morning game and a heavier more substantial food is going to be preferred for afternoon or night games. The Serving time comes quickly for those who are unprepared and the biggest factor in the timing is know your barbecue equipment and using your skill as a personal chef. The sauces are the the kicker. With carne asada and catering you have the opportunity to explore a world of flavor that is brought to you from the amazing Mexican cuisine that is so under rated. The same is true with a Texas style barbecue which utilize very unique sauces and flavors.
Most caterers don’t realize the broad range of flavors that truly make up each cuisine and offer the same generic dishes like sad salmon with bummed out broccoli or chewy chicken and poor man’s potatoes. I wouldn’t dream of it. Not when the games on the line.
The chargers have given it a good chance to play a couple extra games next year and many more than the fans are rooting for it. It’s amazing that a sport so widely loved can come down to arbitration as it has and could be threatened to be played this next year. If it does you can find me catering at San Diego’s new arena football league. So long as there isn’t a team next year called the Los Angeles Chargers, I will be happily helping The fans and my patrons grub on an amazing season (ing).

Caterers rooting for the football season missed out twice since tailgating is a top draw for quality BBQ catering. This 2011 season there are added concerns and local businesses everywhere believe the game must be played. Personal chefs and caterers are rooting for their businesses as well.  Considering catering events based around the sport drive revenues in the hundreds of millions of dollars to the catering industry, missing even half of the regular season could effect the bottom line dramatically.

In the past year it’s been struggles for the chargers and as the NFL trade talk deadlines come closer the entire nation becomes a bit more interested in the once far away concerns that the owners and players may not work this out. For fans this is devastating but it has a huge effect on other parts of our society. Economically the sport of professional football stimulates many other areas of the economy that many people might not think of. As a personal chef in San Diego I have many clients that are mainly interested in my skills off the field, as a BBQ chef. While they utilize my skills all year long, the tailgate is a specialty that is always booked on game day. For me it’s a great opportunity to spread the word about my business because the clients always have a policy of sharing and the food speaks for itself. Its a great source of spreading word of mouth marketing ( no pun intended) and i also keep a great client on a weekly rotation.

If the Players and owners in the NFL don’t come to an agreement to play next year, one implication will be about 8-10 home games that would normally be great catering jobs for a personal chef like myself. This is a good amount when it comes down to it at the end of the year. however I feel much worse for the fans that don’t get to enjoy my pulled pork or smoked asada taco’s, two favorites that any personal chef in the San Diego area NEEDS to know. These are also special events for a private party chef since they are always a very enjoyable time and each event has a unique environment that “i can recall distinctly making many games very special events.

Catering a tailgate party is something that I have taken great pride in. It takes the right tools, something that I have acquired after years of learning the trade. The smoker needs to be wheeled out early so that iti can be brought to the right temp and all your condiments and rubs need to be applied much earlier. another fact that any personal or bbq caterer knows. The grill needs to be brought up to temperature as well for certain meats that aren’t being smoked. the second factor is the time of the game. This is going to dictate the type of food that is going to be served for the most part. The side dishes will be a fresh mix for a morning game and a heavier more substantial food is going to be preferred for afternoon or night games. The Serving time comes quickly for those who are unprepared and the biggest factor in the timing is know your barbecue equipment and using your skill as a personal chef. The sauces are the the kicker. With carne asada and catering you have the opportunity to explore a world of flavor that is brought to you from the amazing Mexican cuisine that is so under rated. The same is true with a Texas style barbecue which utilize very unique sauces and flavors.

Most caterers don’t realize the broad range of flavors that truly make up each cuisine and offer the same generic dishes like sad salmon with bummed out broccoli or chewy chicken and poor man’s potatoes. I wouldn’t dream of it. Not when the games on the line and the fans are hungry.

The chargers have given it a good chance to play a couple extra games next year and many more than the fans are rooting for it. It’s amazing that a sport so widely loved can come down to arbitration as it has and could be threatened to be played this next year. If it does you can find me catering at San Diego’s new arena football league. So long as there isn’t a team next year called the Los Angeles Chargers, I will be happily helping the fans and my patrons grub on an amazing season(ing).

13.06.2011 Recipes 1 Comment

Summer Time Potato Salad Recipe

The Sun is heating up and it looks as though unlike in 2010, this summer could be a nice one.  That means that once again it’s time to fire up the grill, mix a beverage and entertain.
I hoped to give all my patrons a nice fresh recipe to accompany the main dish and crafted a classic potato salad with an option for a hint of bacon.
While it’s not extremely complex the flavor is a classic and if you follow the few tips that i included, I’m sure that you are going to have a great side to accompany your favorite protein when it comes off the grill.
Enjoy!

Jeff’s Potato Salad

2 Pounds Red Bliss Potatoes, peeled, and quartered with skin on 2 Shallots Minced 2 Celery Ribs Diced
1/2 Cup Mayonnaise 3 Tablespoons of Cornichons or Dill Pickles 1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard 2 Tablespoons White Wine Vinegar
CONVIVIAL CATERING
3 Tablespoons of Chopped Fresh Dill Salt and Pepper to Taste Optional: 4 Ounces of Cooked Chopped Bacon Put potatoes in 6 quarts of salted water (or stock) and bring to boil. Cook until a toothpick can slide through the potato easily but isn’t mushy about 12 minutes. Drain and let cool. Whisk together all remaining ingredients.
Gently toss with potatoes and chill.

Happy Dog Days of Summer! Please Contact Convivial Catering for your catering needs and let us know if you have any questions regarding recipes!

27.04.2010 Catering Event, Helpful Catering Tips, Local San Diego No Comments

Gaslamp Catering

It seems somewhat befuddling that with the number of options for food service located within the gaslamp quarter in our beloved downtown san diego that we find so much work in the area.  After taking some time to consider what my clientele is looking for, many fine restaurants can’t provide competitive offers.  I narrowed it down to three main factors.

First was the flexibility.  by coming to me they can have more control over what is being put on the dinner plates of their guests.  Personal chefs are versed in a broad range of culinary techniques and have the tools to provide a fresher option to a pre cooked reynolds wrapped meal.  This also allows my clients to mix cuisine within a meal.  They are not tied down to mexican, italian, japanese or any other flavor.  Whether they are by petco, market street, broad street or in the east village, using a catering service allows the most options for their guests.

Second is something that you don’t receive when ordering out.  Personal service in your own environment.  Ordering out fine dining is simply not the best way to go about impressing a guest.  when hiring a personal chef or a catering company in the gaslamp quarter you bring in an element of personal attention to you and your guests needs.  The personality of your meal is accompanied with the character of those preparing it for you.  Personal chefs know that half of their job is to please the customer.  That what makes them different from a executive chef working in a closed kitchen.

Finally Familiarity with the area makes many of our clients choose me time and time again.  In the Gaslamp Catering is a hot commodity, businesses flourish and when you have the advantage of having worked from horton plaza to the world trade center to east village and each small area of the gaslamp quarter you are able to use local knowledge to ensure that the job gets done right and in time.  Parking, logistics, timing and planning correctly all come easy after having experienced the specific needs of the clients and locations of downtown san diego.

I am glad to have the opportunity to assist so many greatful clients in the gaslamp and always impressed with the level of sophistication of our guests palettes.  it is a joy to work in downtown san diego and the gaslamp is certainly a growing gift to all of us whether we are at the clubs, enjoying appetizers at a networking event, entertaining clients or enjoying a private function at the Icon The Gaslamp has a great synergy for Caterers like us at convivial catering.

06.01.2010 Helpful Catering Tips, Local San Diego, personal chef tips 1 Comment

Personal Chef San Diego

Cooking for private parties and intimate occasions takes a different type of chef.  Doing this takes not only outstanding talent but also the ability to communicate effectively while concentrating on the task at hand and accompany the atmosphere with a consistently jovial personality.  Here are a few tips to help you walk the walk if your catering and a few tips to help you find the right personal chef in San Diego or if your outside of San Diego.

1. Know your role:

– Always be sensitive to the atmosphere of the occasion.  The atmosphere and tastes of your guests will depict type of service that is expected and the style of cuisine that is required.  Remember that as a personal chef you are in fact responsible for more than great food.  In most cases you have been hired to create a mood at a personal gathering or add an exciting flare to a small social event.
As a personal chef be prepared by understanding what the job calls for and being ready to provide a fitting solution.

2. Be comfortable in any setting:

– As a personal chef I face unique scenario’s in each job.  The way that I make sure I am comfortable in any setting is by asking appropriate questions prior to the job.  These questions go beyond the general catering questions regarding menu, volume and style of food.  Ask specific questions.  What equipment is available?  What is the purpose of the event?  Are you looking for entertainment or a quiet setting with incredible cuisine?  be prepared to provide the added effort in possibly recommending a bottle of wine for the client to serve with your meal.

3. Personal chefs provide personal service:

– Be highly attentive to the clients needs when providing personal chef services.  Remember they have invited you into their homes and you are providing a hospitality service.  Lose the back kitchen personality and be prepared to put on your waiter hat.  Personal occasions like this give you the opportunity to present exceptional culinary and social talent which goes a very long way with catering’s number one marketing tool.  Word of mouth.

Personal chef's need to understand their setting

Contact Convivial catering for a personal chef experience.

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