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Catering, Vending and Cooking For The Masses. this forum is OnTopic. A resource to help with catering, vending and just cooking for large parties. Topics to include Getting Started, Ethics, Marketing, Catering resources, Formulas and recipes for cooking for large groups.


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Unread 06-25-2012, 11:11 AM   #1
Wampus
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Default Practically speaking......injection/rub/sauce for MASSIVE BBQ cooking

So, this past weekend (VENDING) we had the dilema of deciding where to draw the line on things like sauce, rub (quantity), injecting (yes or no), etc.

When we compete, we don't cut corners. It's all about that flavor profile.
When feeding the masses, however, we don't want to blow the budget on expensive sauce, injection, etc. There's also the consideration of TIME.

We will NOT put out sub-standard BBQ, and we don't serve with sauce, but do have it available to those who prefer to drench everything in it without tasting first. We lightly rubbed and sprinkled rub into the pulled meat to conserve rub and still have flavor imparted, we decided against injecting of any kind (mainly due to the PIA and time) and as far as prep, we didn't do any trimming of butts or briskets and decided to score the rib membranes ilo removing them.

Everything turned out good. Not necessarily as great as it would have been at home for the family, but on the scale we were cooking it just didn't seem practical to go to the extremes that we normally would at home.

Just curious of those who have done this vending & catering game.....what's the norm?

Also....is vending treated differently than catering? Vending seems so much more fast paced than catering. Also, we are looking for repeat or referral business from catering customers, so does that play in for you all?


Thanks in advance.
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Unread 06-25-2012, 07:25 PM   #2
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Decide your niche is, if it is the cheap customers then don't inject or spend a lot of time on the Q. If your niche is the more heeled clients then give it your all. I use a no-cents injector to do a lot of butts but I always use my competition rubs. Store bought sauces can save money and the customers won't know any different so you can save the money there.
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Unread 06-25-2012, 07:31 PM   #3
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Vending and Catering are quite different. In catgering, you can control things such as amount of food to prep and cook a lot more tightly. Vending, you are at the whim of the market. In essence, you already know how many you are serving and when with catering. With vending, you have no idea and profit can be a harder chase.

I agree with no injecting for large cooks, just a real pain. Other things, competing is so different from vending or catering, the flavors are much more about the meat in mass cooking. You are not looking for one bite knockout flavors, you are looking for that flavor that wants for more bites.
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Unread 06-26-2012, 08:04 AM   #4
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Right. I'm not at all comparing competing with vending & catering. I understand the whole "one bite" concept with competition BBQ.

Even at home, cooking for myself or family & friends, I have only recently started injecting big meats. But this past weekend, we cooked 3 cases of butts and 4 briskets. We didn't inject and I honestly can't imagine the time it would have taken to do so.

I'm just wondering what other proven caterers do in the way of injecting, meat prep, etc. Do you skin your ribs or just score the membrane? Do you use the same amount of rub for catering and vending as at home?

Do you all make your own signature sauce for vending? I can see doing it for catering, but vending?
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Unread 06-27-2012, 11:23 AM   #5
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I usually inject butts and brisket, but it is with a more cost effective injection. For butts I usually use apple juice with salt and brown sugar. Briskets is usually just beef broth. It doesn't take too much time to inject them as you do not need to be as precise with your locations as you do in a comp. I like to cook in a foil pan and then use the drippings (with the fat removed) to help keep the meat moist. Note that this is for catering, as I have not done any vending.
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Unread 06-27-2012, 11:45 AM   #6
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digging the use of ilo for in lieu of.
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Unread 06-30-2012, 11:49 PM   #7
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Great topic for me tonight.
I usually cook my Pork Shoulders on my offset using lump and Cherry for 4 hours to get a great smoke flavor started. I also usually inject, and rub.

I am cooking 4 cases or shoulders and to keep it from being a huge PITA I have been doing 6 - 8 a night, then cooling for Tuesdays event.

Tonight I decided to skip the injection and go straight on the FEC-100.

I will taste it tomorrow but if I do not loose too much flavor, is the way I will roll for large events. I will still do it my normal way for catering jobs, but for the events I need to watch expenses and time.
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Unread 07-06-2012, 08:15 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wampus View Post
Right. I'm not at all comparing competing with vending & catering. I understand the whole "one bite" concept with competition BBQ.

Even at home, cooking for myself or family & friends, I have only recently started injecting big meats. But this past weekend, we cooked 3 cases of butts and 4 briskets. We didn't inject and I honestly can't imagine the time it would have taken to do so.

I'm just wondering what other proven caterers do in the way of injecting, meat prep, etc. Do you skin your ribs or just score the membrane? Do you use the same amount of rub for catering and vending as at home?

Do you all make your own signature sauce for vending? I can see doing it for catering, but vending?
I'm not sure I shoud comment in this section as I'm too much of a clown generally... but over the years have learnt a lot... maybe just not shown it...

But anyway, vending is something that has got me very interested. Catering... no way. Much stricter required standards and expectations. If you're not a real pro, don't do it. Vending would be the place to start first. That's where you can experiment on signature sauces and rubs. You should try and make them and you've got an instant feedback loop from your clients. Once you hit a winner recipe, then you can make that up in very large batches so you only need to do it every 3 months or so. Getting these things right in the vending market, can lead to catering gigs when you've got the recipes nailed and your confidence high.

Cheers!

Bill
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Unread 07-06-2012, 09:25 AM   #9
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Vending - I ramp up store bought sauce till it taste good. Rubs-I make my own for chicken by getting packets of chicken all purp and a few herbs from the indian stores, it's very inexpensive this way. I mostly go with jerk chicken and let the heat be the focus. I don't vend ribs. Pork gets injection but nothing too heavy, just to get flaxour deep and some moisture. I rub with competition rubs.

Catering- I give it everything I got but keep it below competition standards , the general public cant cope with it and nor can I.

Vedning or catering beef always gets Spicewine same with the spuds and veg.
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Unread 07-06-2012, 10:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr_KY View Post
I don't vend ribs.
Why don't you vend ribs Doc? They seem to be a BIG draw around here for us. They're expensive to buy and a PIA, but we get a good price out of em so they pay off. Plus, we sell rib tips with the trimmings to get a double whammy! Just wondering if it's a UK thing or if there's something else I'm missing?
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Unread 07-06-2012, 10:35 PM   #11
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It's a UK thing. Now it could be local to me but people are just not wanting to pay for them. I can get nice thick meaty ribs from a butcher for about 6.00 each yet I couldn't sell em for more than 7.00 a rack. Catering yes I do them but no way van |I move them vending..

There is a guy on the streets in London selling rib meat sandwiches and doing well. Boiled and oven baked till they fall off the bone.His hot sauce is interesting. http://www.theribman.co.uk/
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Unread 07-09-2012, 04:48 PM   #12
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I started cooking comps and decided to vend as a way to offset my habit. I have been doing it for a while and cook for several big events. We normally cook cases of pork butts at a time. We use our good rub don't inject or wrap in foil. I do use my good sauce for those who want it. I now buy the stuff for sauce in 8 gallon batches and it cost me a bit over $100.00. I decided long ago that trying to inject get up in the middle of the night to wrap every thing was a bit over kill for vending. I now only sell pulled pork. Brisket was a slow seller where we live. I have also done turkey legs which sold well. I get more comments on how good my sauce is I now sell it. We sell good quality Q, it just needs to be altered a bit for the masses. I couldn't even count the number of people who rave about our food. I think the masses are feed junk so much they don't know the difference. I know several vendors who sell pulled pork from a can!
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