I had cooked a small Family Dinner service for Jodi and her family from a gift certificate her thoughtful sister had purchased for her. Thoughtful Sister lives in CA. One of the items on the menu was a chocolate mousse. You’ll get the recipe below.
I’d never cooked for Jodi before but my menus intrigued her and she was itching to get a couple of days off of cooking. I conduct much of Beth and the Biscuit through email. My Hungry Families apparently don’t care what I look like as long as I get da food in da fridge. There are many cook dates where I never ever meet the person that hires me to cook for her. She’ll just leave a key under a mat. True. So Jodi is bushed and undernourished. At the beginning of our relationship she wrote me this:
“Hi Beth, we’ve had quite a tough road with my mom this past week. Now she is finally at a rehabilitation center so we’ll have a look at the menus! It’s been hospital and nursing home food for the past few weeks so we will look forward to good food! Thanks. Jodi”
Jodi’s family was my swan song cook date in Minnesota before moving down here, to southwest Virginia. There were only a couple of days before her cook date and I hadn’t heard from her.
Happy Friday to you!
I’ve got you scheduled for your cook date 10/09, next Tuesday.
I’ll be out of the office today and Saturday, but if you need help selecting menu items I will be back in the office around 1 pm each day. I will be shopping for your family Monday.
When you respond to this message you’ll get a auto-response alerting you that Beth and the Biscuit is no longer cooking. Jodi, your family is the last official Beth and the Biscuit cooking engagement. I will not be able to reschedule your cook date.
Having inadvertently slipped past the Thursday deadline for menu selection, I am requesting your menu selection today. I apologize if this procedure puts added pressure on you.
A best wish for your mother’s continued recovery.”
Jodi was running like cra-cra! Her mom was in recovering from a difficult surgery plus she’s got school-age kids in school, and she runs her own business that requires travel.
Sorry, I just got back into town late last night from a work trip. I’ll look at the menu today. Your cooking services will still be incredibly helpful to us. I’m sorry to hear we are your last cooking engagement. I hope we can help you move out of this phase with a bang! More later today….
How about this:
1. chicken and vege pot pie
2. Norwegian Meatballs (my kids will LOVE this because I never make meatballs!)
3. Lasagna (I think it was turkey and spinach)
4. Halibut Provencale
If you agree, I think we’ll freeze the first 3 and eat the fish fresh. So I guess the sides for the first three need to be freezable too?? Should we discuss your thoughts on sides??
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention the menu is to be gluten-free.
NOW we’re cooking! Jodi’s given me her choices and I’m ready to create her menu. This is the menu and the “operating instructions”:
Jodi’s Menu for 10/09/12:
ALL GLUTEN FREE:
Biscuit’s Turkey Lasagna with steamed broccoli or simple salad and apple slices
Norwegian Meatballs with brown gravy, Mashed potatoes with rutabaga and parsley, green salad, pear slices with cheddar cheese
Chicken Potpie with southern greens and fried apples
Halibut Provencal with lemon-dill rice pilaf, simple salad, and mocha mousse and orange slices
I’ll portion out the mashed potatoes in dollops on a baking sheet and have them in the freezer for you to thaw and plate. The broccoli will be Cascadian Farms bagged, the southern greens and fried apples are my recipe and I’ll have them in a container in the freezer.
Halibut Provençal on the first evening:
I’ll make a fresh salad dressing for you. I’ll bring an organic bagged salad and red onion to slice on top for your salad. I’ll prepare the mocha mousse and have it ready for you to plate (bowl or cup) and provide the 2 oranges for you to slice.
For all other meals:
pot pie and lasagna; I’ll bring aluminum pans that can freeze, then when the day comes you want to have the meal for supper, remove the meal from the freezer and place in your refrigerator in the morning. In the evening, pre-heat your oven to 350°, and bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly. The sides for these meals are microwavable.
The meatballs will be in a black, bpa-free, heavy plastic container that is re-usable indefinitely – in dishwasher, microwave, and freezer.
You’ll want to shop for the fruit, cheese, and salad the day of the meal.
Does this all sound fine to you?
Did you get my message about the time of the cook-date? Either Monday afternoon if you want the 1:00 slot or 9:00 a Tuesday. I’ll be in your kitchen a good and fun 4 hours.
On Tuesday at 9A, I find her house; I meet Jodi for the first time and see her kitchen. I strategize. I start cooking. I complete the cook date as scheduled. Typically, I’ll wait a few days for a review of the meals to come into my email box. But as I was leaving town soon, I wanted to make sure they had a nice food experience, so I bugged her the next day:
Did your family enjoy last night’s meal? Yes, I’m leaving, but testimonials are always good to add to a resume.
“YUM! I’m glad you emailed me. I wanted to let you know everything was met with a glowing review. My kids said they want to invite their friends over for the next meal and then tell them that we cooked it when they all rave about it! They were disappointed to hear that you were not coming back!
The only downside was there wasn’t enough! But then that’s just a testament to how delicious everything tasted. If you have the recipe for the mocha mousse, my kids would REALLY appreciate it.
Thanks again the entire experience was great!!
“Biscuit’s Mocha Mousse: Stir 1 Tablespoon espresso, strong coffee, or Italian espresso powder (what I used) into 2 cups prepared chocolate pudding (I used Cozyshack). Beat ¾ cup heavy cream (I used Organic Valley) with 1 tablespoon sugar until soft peaks form. Fold into the mocha pudding. Top with shaved chocolate, or not. Embarrassingly simple. Don’t tell anyone.
I’m delighted with the review. Thank you!
“Yeah. I think I can even handle that! Thanks for sharing.
Good luck down south.