Monthly archives of “December 2015

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30 Restaurants Fined for Ignoring their Grease Traps

Grease interceptors remain vitally important installations in restaurants everywhere, as not having them could result in fines from local and county jurisdictions. That’s what at least 30 restaurants are finding out in Youngwood, Pennsylvania after ignoring letters from their local sewage authority.

The borough is complaining that there are only a couple of traps in place after letters were sent out in October. The grease that ends up in the sewage system requires extra care and patience to remove, making it much more of a hassle than it is to remove it at the restaurants, hence the need.

“The big problem is not that these people don’t’ want to install them. It’s getting a contractor to put them in.” Apparently, there are very few contractors who are able to install grease traps, as many of them rushed to the same one to get the job done. Right now, the fine is up to a possible $300 per day for pumping grease into the sewage system without a grease interceptor.

When it comes to grease and other foul things that restaurants produce, it’s up to the restaurant to remove them from the system. They cannot simply be flushed down the drain to let someone else handle the problem. Grease removal is an important issue for many municipalities, not simply this one.

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Buy Your Dinnerware for Charity

Restaurant dinnerware is usually one of the last things that restaurant owners think about. After all, it’s just something to put the food on, right? But, for those who subscribe to the theory that eating at a restaurant should be an experience (which we do), that dinnerware contributes visual artistry to the food, thereby enhancing its flavor.

In New York, there are a bunch of college students who are pairing their custom-created restaurant dinnerware with the dishes that they are serving on them. It’s a chance to explore the creative process and give that something extra back to the community. The project, known as the Harvest Dinner Project, will benefit the Lord’s Table feeding program.

People who are eating at the event have the opportunity to purchase the dinnerware that they eat from, so that they can commemorate the great experience that they had. Most everything within the meal will have been sourced locally – emphasizing the necessity for sourcing local.

“This is about participation, community engagement, and spotlighting the issue of feeding our neighbors. It also crystallizes the experiential learning and community involvement opportunities we promote.” A professional chef in the local area will provide a seven course meal.

What does your restaurant dinnerware contribute to your eating experience? We’d love to know.

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Butternut Squash is Best with a Robot Coupe Blixer

The Robot coupe Blixer was made for the winter months. There are so many tasty treats that you can make with the Blixer that we’re not able to list them out here, but rest assured that if you can blend it, the Robot Coupe can take it. We’ve been dreaming of a butternut squashy new year this week.

A rich, creamy butternut squash soup is simple to make, yet will please your guests immensely. It takes a little squash, butter, heavy cream, and brown sugar. From there, you have a sweet, sweet mixture that all of your diners will love. We’re thinking about blending up a batch from this recipe posted in the Cleveland paper over the next few days.

While that was a traditional recipe for squash soup, you’re more than welcome to add some Indian spices to the mix to give it a little more spice and savory twist. Here’s one recipe that you can use the Robot coupe for, where you’re also adding ginger, coriander, turmeric, and more. There is less emphasis on the heavy cream and more on the flavor. This one’s from Detroit.

Traveling south to San Antonio, you can spice up your squash soup by diving into some kabocha squash and putting in some potatoes to the mix. Add some lemons, celery, and cilantro and you have a fresh soup that your patrons are sure to love.

The Robot Coupe Blixer is versatile and can blend many ingredients into soups, stews, and delights that will please your guests.

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Artisan Potato Chip Companies Growing

There are many successful businesses out there that start with just an inkling of an idea. Jeanne and Matt Rue wanted to use the unused fryer. They’d already been selling things online, so they decided to make potato chips. It was easy. In a short time, they sold their first three bags of home-made potato chips.

They didn’t know what they’d do next, but they gradually started learning more about the potato chip making business. The Rues sold their first bags of chips in bread bags and used hand written labels. Their potato chips gradually gained some prominence, and sales began to increase.

Eventually, they worked their way up to needing a production facility and commercial fryers. Since there were others potato chip making places in the area, it was the perfect opportunity to have a discussion about how they would be able to work together.

The power was in the distribution. From a single countertop fryer, this couple started to grow the business through talking with others and eventually getting a distribution deal. Their cottage industry is growing, and it’s not showing any signs of stopping.

This is just one story about how a couple has gotten to achieve their dreams by providing worthwhile food to the community. You can read a couple more in the Columbus Dispatch here.

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Best Foods to Donate to Food Banks

When the holiday season rolls around, the restaurant shelving at food banks gets full. In fact, in a lot of cases, the donations account for around half of food supplies for the rest of the year. We thought that we’d share information about what to donate to the food banks.

What’s in demand?

  • Peanut butter
  • Canned fish
  • Canned fruit
  • Canned vegetables

Stay away from

  • Ramen noodles
  • High sugar cereals
  • Junk food
  • Home-canned foods
  • Food packaged in glass jars

Food banks can’t take food that has expired, either. It’s mentioned that you should provide food that you would eat and things which are desired rather than the things which you can’t figure out what to do with. If you’re in doubt about what the food bank accepts, ask them.

Another thing to consider is to simply give money to the food bank of your choice. The reason is that those food banks can get exactly what they need, and they would be able to get the food in bulk. In other words, their dollars have more buying power than retail donations.

Food banks in this country are doing an amazing job of keeping people fed, but they rely upon the donations that you provide. This holiday season, consider giving what you can to your favorite charity of choice. Consider asking your food bank or soup kitchen if they need any equipment?

“The best ways to donate to food banks” was originally published in MarketWatch.