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Catering, Food Handling and Awareness *OnTopic* Forum to educate us on safe food handling. Not specifically for Catering or competition but overall health and keeping our families safe too.


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Old 02-15-2020, 12:53 AM   #1
dbarrym
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Default Trimming for catering vs competition....

Hello all,

I've now done a few cooks on request for up to 75 people at work events, house warmings, church and club events etc. and so far have been doing the same level of meat trimming/prep for these as I would do for a competition on ribs, brisket and pork butts. The prep work has been good training but takes way too much time when dealing with the amount of meat needed for these events.

What degree of trimming do you pro's do for restaurant/catering prep? I am less concerned with appearance then I am for quality...more so for ribs (I usually do spares and trim to St. Louis cut) than for brisket and butts. Comments welcome...


Thanks!


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Old 02-15-2020, 07:42 PM   #2
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My trim for competition is far more aggressive and precise. For vending / catering - remember higher yield affects your bottom line, we trim for quality, and only trim what's necessary:
Brisket: Trim fat cap down to 1/4", trim fat vein out between the 2 muscles
Butts: No trim unless the fat cap is very thick, then I remove it.
Ribs: Buy St Louis racks, only trim thin edges
Chicken: No trim (drums & thighs)
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Old 02-16-2020, 02:55 AM   #3
dbarrym
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Thanks Prairie_smoke - that makes sense and is essentially what I did for a 20 person group today on 8 racks of spares and an 8 lb butt.



I had a temp overrun in the last 20 minutes on my Vortex UDS (damper control went full open, I'm assuming someone accidentally bumped it) and the temp soared to 390 with flames coming out of the coal bucket/diffuser before I caught it - as a result the bottom 1/3 of each rack was less than acceptable (to me) and I set them aside - but they were taken and gobbled up anyway with compliments. Wish the judges were as forgiving :)


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Old 02-16-2020, 07:23 AM   #4
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No comparison for what we do between the two (though I don't compete anymore). Large loose hanging skin and chunks of fate get trimmed for catering but in no way does it resemble competition trimming.
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Old 02-18-2020, 09:54 AM   #5
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Pork - no trim, unless there's some hangers we need to get off
Ribs - remove membrane, trim the thin end down a bone or so.
Brisket - we usually are doing either slices or burnt ends, so we just buy either flats or points, so not much trimming there, either.
Chicken - no trimming. We try to only do chopped chicken, so we buy boneless/skinless thighs and use those.
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Old 02-18-2020, 10:57 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by midwest_kc View Post
Pork - no trim, unless there's some hangers we need to get off
Ribs - remove membrane, trim the thin end down a bone or so.
Brisket - we usually are doing either slices or burnt ends, so we just buy either flats or points, so not much trimming there, either.
Chicken - no trimming. We try to only do chopped chicken, so we buy boneless/skinless thighs and use those.
How are you serving the chopped chicken? Sandwiches or a is serving as a side meat an option?
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Old 02-18-2020, 01:28 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thirdeye View Post
How are you serving the chopped chicken? Sandwiches or a is serving as a side meat an option?
When catering, it goes with any other meat, which are always accompanied by bread, either a roll or a bun depending on what the client wanted. Usually I see people making sandwiches, but it can certainly be eaten with a fork, just like pulled pork.
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