Sometimes, our clients have a very specific idea in mind for their event. To celebrate the Jewish holiday of Purim this year, our clients wanted to do a South of the Border themed meal, or seudah in Hebrew. Jon S. is Argentine, so, of course, freshly-baked empanadas were on the menu. His family's recipe often uses ground beef, but we substituted ground turkey but kept everything else the same--olives, hard-boiled eggs, adobo, onion and few secret spices. They were delicious and all the guests were very impressed that we made them by hand.
Also on the menu? Shredded Mexican Braised Brisket, Chicken Mole with homemade mole sauce, Fiesta Rice with Adobo, both Beef and Vegetarian Bean Chilis, and traditional Hamantaschen cookies made with shortbread dough. Ours were filled with either strawberry or chocolate fillings. Yum!
But...we also had a bonus event that weekend! Our friends run an awesome annual Purim event, "A Very Awesome Purim," and we sold some special Hamantaschen to their hungry show-goers in multiple flavors: Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese, Strawberry Rhubarb or Nutella. They really made an already awesome Purim even more awesome and delicious!
Have you ever watched Animal Planet? Remember the scene where a pack of lions descend on a gazelle? That's what Saturday afternoon kiddush is like at many synagogues.
We'd been hired to cater "Enhanced Kiddush" for a big synagogue in Queens, NY for about around 150 people. We were also told that the numbers sometimes swell right before kiddush started with hungry mouths post-praying. We wanted to cook some exciting dishes instead of the standard tuna and egg salad that was the usual fare, but at the same time still have some classic flavors to satisfy the normal crowd. Of course, we made lots of lox platters featuring thinly sliced tomato, red onion, cucumbers and cream cheese, plus bagels and challah rolls. In addition, we also changed it up a little with some Roasted Corn and Black Bean Salad, Middle Eastern Eggplant Salad, Cucumber and Tomato Tzatziki Salad, Tuna Salad, and Mushroom & Mushroom "Chopped Liver" and more. Yum! We also prepared freshly-baked Raspberry Crumble Bars, tangy Cheesecake Bars, rich Brownie Bites, and fruit platters.
We ended up giving out so many business cards, and the food was a major hit!
Happy New Year! We hope you had fun last night...we definitely did! But before we partied the night away, we cooked up a storm for a New Year's Day brunch. There were two varieties of frittatta: Roasted Red Pepper and Feta Cheese and Sweet Corn and Muenster Cheese, Banana Bread Pudding, French Toast Bread Pudding with Maple-Granola Streusel, Vegetarian Corn and Bean Chili, Salmon Salad, Cheesecake Bars, Strawberry Crumb Bars, Cookies, Brownie Bites, Mini Quiches, Lox, Bagels, cereal and fruit. Plus, the bar was open. The party was a great way to bring in the new year, and everyone started off the year being well fed by some J2 deliciousness!
Rounding out the meal was a vanilla buttermilk cake with a surprise strawberry filling, dusted with powdered sugar. We called this our Sufganiyot Cake since its structure and appearance was made to look like a jelly donut. Chag sameach!
Think we only cater Shabbat and Jewish holidays? Think again! J2Food is a full-service catering company and we cook for all kinds of events. A member of the reunion committee for Stuyvesant High School Class of 1972 contacted us about catering a brunch buffet for them at Stuyvesant's old location. It sounded pretty cool, so we said yes and prepared a big spread. Oven-Baked Frittatta with Roasted Red Peppers, Onions and Feta Cheese, Home Fries, Mini Quiches, Bagels and a variety of breads, Lox Platters, Tuna Salad, Harvest Salad, Brownies and more. We served the food in the cafeteria and for these Baby Boomers, it was like a blast from the past--but with better food!
It's that time of year again...post-Labor Day Pop Up Foodie Shabbat at BZBI! We were back at Temple Beth Zion-Beth Israel in Philly to do another Marom Shabbat and Pop Up Foodie Shabbat dinner. Last year was a huge success, so we're doing it again with a new menu. this year's theme? BBQ. Can you say "yum"?
We thought a good, Southern style barbecue menu would be great for a celebration of the end of summer, plus feed lots of hungry foodies! The most important part of the menu was the sauce. How can you cook bbq without a good bbq sauce? We cooked up a big batch of a sweet and spicy peach bbq sauce. What could be bad about that? That same bbq sauce was used go baste and glaze the main dish of the night: BBQ Chicken. Now, no bbq dinner is complete without some side dishes. We also cooked up some BBQ Baked Beans with smoked turkey hocks to flavor them, tangy and creamy Southern Style Potato Salad, cool and sweet Cucumber Salad, freshly-baked Cornbread, and warm Peach Cobbler for dessert. The food was so good we had to take some home for leftovers! But first, we feast. Nomnom!
As we continued to celebrate J2Food's 1st anniversary, we hosted another event in NYC. Shabbat Under The Stars ended up being a rousing success, especially thanks to the support of OneTable and Moishe House Without Walls, and we had over 100 people come for delicious Mediterranean food and an awesome rooftop Shabbat experience. We had young Jews from a variety of backgrounds, and it was wonderful to see so many new faces and bring the Pop Up Foodie Shabbat experience to the masses. Moroccan Spiced Grilled Chicken, Grilled Corn and Black Bean Salad, Roasted Vegetable and Pesto Pasta, Mediterranean Citrus Rice as well as a Spicy Chickpea and Eggplant Stew were on the menu, followed by decadent, homemade Peach Cobbler. Yum! We can't wait for the next event. Stay tuned!
In honor of J2Food's one year anniversary, we returned to Philadelphia--the City of Brotherly Love--where it all began last year, and partnered up with Hillel's Jewish Graduate Student Network for a Summer In The City Shabbat. We decided to go with an old school theme, and what's more old school than Italian? We got 40 people to come out for a delicious and homemade Italian buffet made up of some our signature dishes. Freshly baked garlic bread challah, tangy Caesar salad, pasta with slow cooked veal and beef bolognese, roasted chicken thighs with sun-dried tomato aioli, spinach and caramelized onions as well as a moist vanilla cake with macerated strawberries with balsamic. Mangia!
We had a blast last night at Tribe12 Fellowships's 2017 Launch Night at NMAJH! We're proud to have started our J2Food journey through Tribe12 and to be part of the Fellows' alumni.
Passover is one of our favorite holidays. Why? It's all about eating: three sheets of matzah, two Seder meals, gefilte fish, matzah brei...you name it! And, personally, it's all delicious. This year's holiday was an especially busy time for J2Food. Not only was there cooking to be done for two large Seders, but each of us hosted a Shabbat dinner in a different city across the country from each other! The first was the "Judios Unidos Seder" in Philadelphia featuring a delicious, Latin spin on the traditional Seder. The menu featured flavorful dishes like ropa vieja, "gefilte fish" ceviche, rice and beans and more.
Our second Passover Shabbat dinner was "Shabbat On The Bayou" in New Orleans' French Quarter, a special Cajun edition of Pop Up Foodie Shabbat with a bold menu of matzah meal fried chicken, spicy chicken and sausage gumbo, braised greens and more. Big flavor in the Big Easy! The food ended up being delicious, and might have to become a regular event!
Exciting news: J2Food was live on Empire Radio on February 24, 2017. Listen to us talk all about J2Food, our foodie mission, our Pop Up Foodie Shabbat program, and the future for J2Food's culinary journey.