My 1st Catering

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Sous Chef
May 5, 2005
Whitney, TX
I wanted to reprint from another forum what I did a couple of weeks ago at my 1st catering gig. It might be useful to someone thinking about catering an outing.

Although the first catering went very smooth and was a lot of fun, it was a whole lot of work. After visiting with the Woodman, I now understand why it's just as easy to cater for a large party of 100 or a small gathering of 20. I was going to charge $12 a head for 2 meats, spare ribs and chicken, and 3 sides, Bill Surprise Potatoes, beans, and corn on the cob. Since they wanted to pay $15 a head I added ABT's as an appetizer. They furnished the plates and utensils, drinks and napkins. I got up around 7:00am and prepared the peppers, packed the Trailblazer and pit and hit the road around 11:00am. I arrived at the cook site at noon, and set up camp. Since dinner was to be served between 6:30 and 7:00, the first thing I did was get the pit lit. While the pit was coming to temp., I got the potatoes on the burner to boil. I cooked every thing on site. While the potatoes were boiling, I got the bacon fried, onions diced and the beans put together. Woostered the ribs and caked them with Texas BBQ Rub, and pit them on the horizontal to start. Got the potatoes and beans covered and in the upright to cook. After a couple of hours I moved the ribs to the upright. I drained the chicken I had brined and coated the outside with more rub and got them in the horizontal. I used pecan and hickory for this cook. After about 1 -1/2 hours I started basting the chicken using Miguel Carlos BBQ & Mop Sauce, which this time I had added 2 cans of Big Red soda and let it cook down. Now let me tell you, that was mighty good stuff. I also spritzed the ribs with pineapple juice several times during the cook. I mopped the bird parts a total of 3 times. Then 1/2 an hour before dinner I spread on the Pineapple Habenaro TPJ that I had thinned with Pineapple preserves that had been pureed. (There were lots of "yankess" in the dinner group.) Everyone loved the food. I had lots of questions on how you cook, with one yankee asking how long I par-boiled the ribs! :LOL: I also got lots of questions about The Extreme and if Gator Pit made smaller backyard versions. I bet I wrote on napkins a dozen times. Expect some calls Ritch. I also was asked if I'd be interested in putting together a team to cook for them at Memphis in May next year? Bill, Ritch, Craig, Jeff you listening? Also their Louisville rep wanted me to come there to cook for a party the middle of September. While I did decline that one, he wanted me to find someone in his area with a rig to cater for them. Any one in the Louisville, Kentucky area listening? They also mentioned a possible sponsorship for cook-offs. I'm gonna check that part out for sure! So all in all it was successful, but not too profitable. But as Woodman also said, a good catering can also be measured in/by future business and referals. Some of you were interested in the cost of a small catering. I've included all expenses incurred. I will say that I could have cut the chicken back to 1 10# bag instead of two, but the 6 racks of ribs was just about right. I did not cut them St. Louis style, but will next time, and save the knuckles for appetizers. One big can of beans would have been plenty as well. Also 20 full ears of corn could have been cut in half, as no one ate more than a half. Now the potaotes on the other hand, well let's just say I had to get me some to take home before they ate them all. Although the ABT's were mild, they were too much for those "yankee" types. I served dinner at 7:00pm sharp. I started breaking down the site at 8:30. I hit the road at 10:00pm and arrived home at 11:00pm. Unpacked, showered and in bed at 1:30am. Up at 4:30am to get ready for work. Long day, but I do believe it was worth it. And could be in the future as well.

Here are the expenses.

Catering Expenses

Pork Spare Ribs
6 Racks $45.00
Wooster $ 2.00
1 Bag TX BBQ Rub $13.00
Pineapple Jelly $ 2.50
Texas Pepper Jelly $ 5.50
TOTAL ---------- $60.00

Chicken Thighs & Legs
2 10# Bags $10.00
2 gal. Apple Juice $ 4.00
Salts, Sugars $ 1.00
1 gal. BBQ Sauce $10.00
TOTAL --------- $25.00

Bill’s Surprise Potatoes
Potatoes $3.00
Sour Cream $3.00
Chicken Soup $2.00
Mushroom Soup $2.00
Cheese $6.00
Assorted Spices $1.00
TOTAL ---------- $17.00

Baked Beans
2 #10 Cans Bushs $8.50
1# Bacon $2.50
2 Onions $2.00
½ Bag Rub $6.50
TOTAL --------- $19.50

Corn on the Cob
20 Ears Extra Sweet $10.00
Butter $ 2.00
TOTAL ---------- $12.00

24 large Jalapenos $2.00
1# Sage Sausage $2.50
Cheese $2.50
1# Bacon $2.50
TOTAL ---------- $9.50

TOTAL FOOD --- $151.00

Equipment & Utensils

2 Serving Spoons $ 4.00
4 Chafing Stands $14.00
Steam Pans $20.00
2 Tongs $ 3.25
Apron $11.00
Sauce Brushes $ 8.00
Salt & Pepper Shakers $10.00
Chicken Shears $15.00
Paper Towels $ 4.00
TOTAL ----------- $89.25

Gas ---------------- $30.00


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