If you are looking for a great summery recipe to serve your family or friends, this pureed summer squash soup makes for a great first course, brunch, or lunch dish. This recipe is really easy to make and you’ll only need about 45 – 50 minutes to get everything completed. You can expect prep to take 35 minutes and then cooking takes 15 – 20. These instructions make 8 servings, if you only need 4 servings then cut everything in half.
2 – large, chopped sweet onions 1 – chopped medium leek, use the white portion only 2 – tablespoons of olive oil 6 – minced garlic cloves 6 – medium, seeded and cubed, yellow summer squash 4 – cups low-sodium chicken broth 4 – sprigs of fresh thyme 1/4 – teaspoon of kosher salt 2 – tablespoons of lemon juice 1/8 – teaspoon of hot pepper sauce 1 – tablespoon of shredded Parmesan 2 – teaspoons of grated lemon peel
Take your large saucepan and heat your oil over medium. Add your onions and leeks and sauté until tender. Next, add the garlic and cook for about 1 minute and then add the squash and continue to sauté for an additional 5 minutes. Now you’ll stir in the broth, thyme and salt, and bring everything to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the squash is tender. Remove the thyme sprigs and transfer this mixture to your blender in batches. Process everything until the soup has a silky smooth texture. Return all the processed soup back to your saucepan, stir in the lemon juice and hot pepper sauce, and thoroughly heat. Garnish with cheese and lemon peel.
Summer is the perfect time for being outside and grilling. Why not try your hand at a grilled summer squash pizza? This pizza recipe is an awesome healthy alternative that works great as a simple appetizer or full meal. Serve with a fresh salad of seasonal greens with a ripe watermelon for dessert! These instructions will make about 8 servings if you keep the serving size down to 1 slice. The cooking time really depends on how long you need to prep your grill, otherwise the actually cooking of the pizza takes between 10 and 15 minutes.
1 – teaspoon olive oil 1 – teaspoon balsamic vinegar 1/8 – teaspoon salt 1/8 – teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1 – medium zucchini, cu into 1/4-inch-thick lengthwise slices 1 – medium yellow squash, cut into 1/4-inch-thick lengthwise slices 1 – can of cooking spray 1 – 12-inch pre-made pizza crust 2 – plum tomatoes, cut into 1/8-inch-thick slices 1/4 – cup of finely grated pecorino Romano cheese 2 – tablespoons of thinly sliced fresh basil 1/2 – teaspoon of finely chopped fresh oregano
First prepare the grill and get it hot and ready. While the grill is heating up, take a large mixing bowl and combine the oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, zucchini and summer squash slices. Gently toss the slices to give them a nice coating. Spray the grill rack with nonstick spray, place each slice on the rack, and grill for about 2 minutes on each side, or until each slice is tender. Reduce the grill temp to medium.
While the grill is cooling down some, coat the pizza crust with non-stick spray. Grill the crust for about 1 minute on each side, or until it has been toasted to your liking. Next, take your squash and zucchini slices and arrange them on the crust. Overlay this arrangement with tomatoes and then cover with the pecorino Romano cheese. Grill the entire pizza for about 5 minutes, or until it has been thoroughly heated. Garnish with fresh basil and oregano.
Do you need affordable Raleigh catering services for your next event? Call Catering By Design! We have awesome prices and offer world-class customer service. Our menus are perfect for events of all sizes, and types. Large, small, formal or casual, our prices and packages cannot be beat. We can even deliver your order and leave if you do not require full service catering. Let Catering By Design be your Raleigh catering service of choice. Give us a call today to get on our schedule!
Recently, The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club of Durham held their “2015 Annual Breakfast Fundraiser.” This event showcases the exceptional children and programs of both organizations. The annual breakfast provides the supporters a chance to see their money and time at work by allowing some of the kids and club members to share their triumphs and successes.
This breakfast also serves as the premiere fundraising event for the Club. New attendees get a chance to become a pivotal part of the community that supports the Club’s mission. This year’s theme was “Great Futures”. It was chosen to celebrate the amazing Club members, all the children, and the wonderful accomplishments they will achieve during their lives. The keynote speaker was WNCN’s Sean Maroney. He really knocked it out of the park, inspiring the crowd to give as much as they could with his own personal stories.
We had the honor of participating in this year’s fundraiser and we could not be happier or more grateful. It was a wonderful morning full of laughter and fellowship with two outstanding organizations. We wanted to share some of our favorite moments from this wonderful event, but to see the entire gallery, please visit us on Pinterest.
We started the fundraiser off right with a traditional southern-style breakfast buffet with all the fixings, complete with coffee, water, and plenty of juice for the kids.
The buffet had lots of kid friendly choices, like these Assorted Danishes, Biscuits with Butter and Jelly, and Seasonal Cubed Fresh Fruit.
For the sides, we had Seasoned Diced Potatoes and Cheesy Grits, and no breakfast is complete without Scrambled Eggs, Bacon and Sausage.
Top Rated Fundraiser Catering Raleigh NC | Catering By Design
Catering By Design is one of the best special event catering Raleigh NC companies. We’re the Triangle area’s experts for fun, food, and fantastic flavors. Please call us today for all of your special event catering needs. We can also help you with everything from picking out the perfect event location, to providing you with table linens, or full bar service. We’ve been one of the top caterers in North Carolina for years, so call us today and ask us about our special event catering specials.
Being newly engaged is an exciting, yet stressful time. There are just so many decisions to make, so many choices to approve, and so many places and vendors to visit with. How is a soon-to-be bride to get every accomplished? Luckily, Catering By Design is here to help you. If you’ve been following our blog, we post a lot of wedding tips, and today is no different. Today’s blog is the first part of a two post series that is going to focus on the hottest wedding colors for 2015. Part one is going to be all about the blush, muted and fun tones, whereas part two will cover the natural, vivid, lively, and trendy colors.
Picking your wedding colors should be fun and exciting because color is expressive and engaging. When you go about picking your wedding colors, we suggest that you first start by picking one or two, no more than three, primary colors and then choose one or two accent colors. Use the accent colors to tie in the save the date cards, centerpieces, and other wedding decoration elements.
If you’re into soft hues and romantic colors, the blush tones might be perfect for you. This year, you’ll see a lot of carnation pink, olive, and custom shades of rose. This palette really pops for pretty spring and summer weddings.
Maybe you’re more of fun type of girl that wants to have a bright and lively wedding. If so, this year’s fun wedding colors should strike your fancy, and match your personality. The hottest fun colors this year combine several shades of purple and lavender, infused with ivory tones. Purple is dramatic and can be used extensively throughout your wedding theme. Purple works well for weddings during any season.
Our favorite pristine colors for 2015 consists of fresh and clean shades of whites, ivory, grey-blues and classic charcoal. These colors work well for brides that want a little color, but also need to keep things kind of neutral. This palette is perfect for brides wanting an elegant and formal affair.
Some brides will want to “tone down” the colors and for this reason, here are some of the most preferred muted colors. For 2015, we just love custom shades of shale, dusty rose, and light silver. This palette is also soft and romantic, and works well for spring, summer, fall and winter weddings. Brides should look to incorporate a few soft pastels to tie everything together for spring and summer, and use a few pristine colors for fall and winter ones.
Affordable Raleigh Catering Service For Weddings
If you are looking for affordable Raleigh catering services for weddings, please call Catering By Design. We have the perfect menus for any affair, both large and small. We can even deliver the food and leave if you do not need full service catering. Give us call with any questions about our Raleigh catering services for wedding, corporate affairs, and even social events.
The Kentucky Derby is usually held during the first weekend of May, so that means the big race is just right around the corner. If you are still looking for a fantastic way to really kick off spring, and the warmer weather finally starting to arrive, then why not plan a get together with your closest friends, family, and loved ones? Having a Kentucky Derby party is the perfect way to have a really memorable event that everyone should really enjoy. Your favorite Raleigh caterers, Catering By Design, have put together a two part series on how to have a really fun Kentucky Derby party. These tips will ensure that your party is as authentic as one at Churchill Downs.
In part one, we are going to discuss the food and some of the decorations that you should have at your party. Part two of the series will concentrate on games, entertainment, and all the fun things to make your Derby Party a success.
Derby Food Favorites
If you are going to have a Kentucky Derby party, you really want it to be as authentic as possible. That is why you want to be sure that your menu is something similar to what they’ll be serving in Louisville. Here are a few of the most essential, and traditional recipes you must serve at your Derby party. Don’t worry, most everyone should love all of these.
Probably the most celebrated of all of the signature Derby cocktails is the Mint Julep. This iconic drink is a staple of the Kentucky Derby. If you can, serve it in a silver julep cup to give your guests a real feel of how they drink them at the Derby. The traditional presentation will really set your party apart. Below, you’ll find a few more traditional race-day cocktails to try.
The Kentucky Derby has a nickname, sometimes the race can be called “The Run for the Roses”, so why not take the name and “run” with it. You can decorate your event venue with the classic flower and incorporate red and white roses in with the centerpieces, or use them as small tabletop decorations as well. Just think classy. Have the women wear their favorite and most outrageous hats, while the men should be dressed in their finest seersucker suits, pastels, with matching bow ties.
The Best Raleigh Caterers | Catering By Design
Catering By Design should be your number one choice when only the top Raleigh caterers will do. We offer great prices and awesome customer service for every event we cater, no matter the size. If you don’t need full-service catering, ask about our delivery service. We will be happy to just deliver the food, at your scheduled time, and take off after everything has been approved. Call us today so we can cater your Kentucky Derby Party.
Continuing with the hottest wedding trends for the season, this post will focus on our favorite food and drink ideas that all the experts are talking about. Catering By Design is one of the top Raleigh catering companies for weddings, social parties, and business events. We have menus for pretty much every occasion. Brides, you should call us to set up a FREE menu tasting for your wedding. If you feel like we missed something, just tell us and we can customize any menu to your liking. You’ll get nothing but the best when you pick Catering By Design over other Raleigh catering companies.
Drink & Be Married
Champagne toasts will be a huge trend this year. Even champagne towers will be back in grand fashion for more formal affairs. For casual affairs, you’ll see signature champagne cocktails with fruit and Mimosa bars. Another big hit will be smaller signature drink options. Small wine samplings, flights of craft beer from local breweries, or shots of different bourbons are also great ideas to start with.
Instead of having an open bar with everything, wedding planners are seeing more couples offering their favorite local wines, spirits and beers from their favorite local breweries and distilleries, or importing their favorite craft drinks from their own hometowns, or home state if they’re transplants.
Taste of Heaven
Skip cocktail hour and think more along the lines of tasting stations instead. Today’s couples want to show off their favorite foods in manageable, bite sized portions. A great place to start is a mini mac’n’cheese bar, oyster shucking station, or maybe even a taco stand. For the main course, serve it family-style. Family-style gives you a little bit of both worlds. Family-style can be somewhat casual and laid back, but upscale at the same time. For non-traditional couples, consider getting a local food truck to provide the meal and be a little different. Food trucks were gaining traction last year at wedding receptions and should be an even bigger hit this year.
This year, snack trays might be the new dessert table and candy bar. Just when wedding guests think the party is winding down, the newlyweds crank it up with late-night treats and snacks that are butlered right out to the dance floor. Sweets like warm, fresh baked cookies and brownies served with milkshakes will surely get the party started. You could even incorporate a snow cone stand, or cotton candy machine. Let your guests know that you’re not just going through the motions.
Wedding cakes will be glammed out, covered with metallic icing and glitter dust. You might even see brides stepping out of the fashion box by mixing gold with silver on the same cake.
Raleigh Catering Companies
Brides, none of the other Raleigh catering companies can compare to the food and service provided by Catering By Design. We’re a Wedding Wire award winning catering company for a big reason – big time flavors and big time savings. Call us today and schedule your FREE wedding menu tasting. Our friendly staff is waiting.
Valentine’s Day is this weekend and we’ve got a great heart-shaped dessert recipe for you. This moist, heart-shaped chocolate valentine cake will be a great addition to any Valentine’s Day Party. This recipe serves 16 so take it to work, school, a neighborhood party, or just simply bake one up for your family. If you’re having the biggest and baddest Valentine’s Day Party, let one of the top Raleigh caterers take care of all of the heavy lifting. At Catering By Design, our menus are budget friendly for both small and large events. Give us a call today and let us know how we can help you with all your party needs.
Prep Time: 45 minutes Total Time: 1 hr 45 minutes
Cake: 3/4 cup – oil 2 1/3 cups – boiling water 2 1/3 cups – granulated sugar 3 – large eggs; room temperature 3/4 cup – unsweetened cocoa powder 1 tablespoon – vanilla extract 2 1/2 cups – all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons – baking soda 1 teaspoon – salt
Chocolate Hearts: 1/2 cup – milk chocolate chips 1/2 cup – white chocolate chips 1/2 cup – semisweet chocolate chips
First, you’ll need two 8″ x 2″ heart-shaped cake pans. Now preheat your oven to 325F. Coat your pans with nonstick spray and line the bottoms of the pans with wax paper. To make the cake, boil the water, remove from heat, and pour it into a medium sized mixing bowl. Mix in the cocoa powder and stir until smooth. Allow to cool and mix in the sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla extract. Beat with your mixer on medium speed until good and blended. Now set your blender on low and mix in the flour, baking soda and salt. Beat until the batter is smooth and thin. Divide this mixture into the two pans and bake these for 45 to 55 minutes until a wooden toothpick, or knife, can be inserted into the center of the cake and it comes out clean.
Next, let the cakes cool in their pans on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Then run your knife around the edges of the cake, turn the pans over on the rack and peel off the paper so the cakes can cool down completely.
Now let’s make the frosting. Take your mixer and beat the butter and vanilla on medium in a large bowl until everything is nice and creamy. Reduce the mixer to low and beat in 1/2 cup of sugar, and then the melted chocolate. Now beat in the remaining sugar and 1/2 cup of cream, alternating between the two. Increase the mixer back to medium and beat until this mix is spreadable. You can add a touch more cream if needed.
Now assemble the cakes by turning them right side up and trimming the tops if needed. Place one cake layer top side down on a serving plate and spread the top with 1 cup of your frosting. Add the second layer to the first by placing it top side down. Brush off any excess crumbs and coat with a thin layer of frosting. Then spread and swirl on the remaining frosting and cover any gaps. Now let’s make the chocolate hearts to top the cake off with.
You’ll need a few small heart-shaped metal cookie cutters and maybe some red paste food coloring. Melt 1/2 cup of the semisweet chocolate chips. Follow the instructions on the package. Pour this liquid onto your lined baking sheet and spread with a metal spatula into a thin square. Place in the refrigerator for about 5 minutes, or until it has set. Take a shallow bowl and fill it with hot water and dip your cookie cutter in for about 30 seconds, tap off the water and cut out the chocolate hearts. You’ll repeat this process with the 1⁄2 cup milk chocolate and the 1⁄2 cup of white chocolate chips. Take some of the red food coloring and use it to tint some of the white chocolate chips. Serve these with the cake on the side, or as a cake topper.
Valentine’s Day will be here before you know it. Love is in the air and you’ll already find Valentine’s Day paraphernalia in all the stores. Catering By Design wants to help you deliver a great Valentine’s Day party that all of your friends and family will love. If you really want to impress everyone in the neighborhood, have your Valentine’s Day party catered. Our event catering Raleigh NC staff will ensure your party will be the sweetest of the season. We have the best menu prices and offer top notch customer service for all of our catering events, just check out our online reviews.
Theme and Decor
Start off your Valentine’s Day celebration by sending out cute, personalized party invitations. You can select a theme like “Love Is in the Air” or something like ” The Sweeter Side of Life” then introduce this idea with your invitations and carry it throughout the party with matching party favors, banners, centerpieces and your other decor items.
Keep your holiday lights out from the holidays before Valentine’s and use them to help set your mood. Holiday lights are great for lining tables, walkways and any makeshift dance floor. Make sure to buy plenty of candles to help with the romantic lighting. A great idea for using candles is to fill clear glass votive holders with red hot candies and then top with tealight candles. Make sure to use red or white pillar candles in groups of three throughout your party area. For a safer candle option, fill clear glass bowls with water, add a few rose petals, and float a few heart candles in each bowl.
For added effect, sprinkle plenty of rose petals around the party area if you can afford it. If you find that roses are too expensive, you can find bags of red rose petals available from several online retailers. You can also have a candy bar filled with your favorite Valentine’s Day treats. Fill cocktail glasses with your favorite candies, chocolates or jelly beans
Entertainment to Set the Mood
Don’t forget the tunes. Make sure to set the mood by playing some good music in the background. If you do not have a lot of CDs, you can download apps to your tablet or smartphone, such as Pandora or Spotify, that will allow you to play all the music you like. Try to find songs about love and keep them upbeat. Use the internet to help with ideas if you are unsure of what music to choose.
Valentine’s Day Event Catering Raleigh NC
At Catering By Design, we think it’s time to break the mold of conventional approaches to your Valentine’s Day celebration! Stay away from the crowded, and noisy, restaurants this year and give your loved one a red rose and then do something different. Host an unforgettable holiday party with a catered meal from from the best event catering Raleigh NC company. Check out our catering menus and then call us today for your chance to savor a phenomenal meal created by Chef James! A Valentine’s Day party catered by us will make sure your event is a fun and memorable evening with your closest friends and loved ones, right in the comfort of your own home.
With the fall season in full effect, we want to make sure we did not forget to post a few fun recipes for our gluten free friends. Don’t forget, at Catering By Design we’re one of the top Raleigh catering companies. We have menus to fit any budget and need. From social events, holiday parties, to weddings, we serve the finest foods with world class service. Call us today to learn more.
Apple Cake Muffins
Ingredients: 1 cup – sorghum flour 1/2 cup – millet flour, or brown rice flour 1/2 cup – potato starch (not to be confused with potato flour) 1 1/2 teaspoons – baking powder 1/2 teaspoon – baking soda 1 teaspoon – xanthan gum 1/2 teaspoon – sea salt 2 teaspoons – ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon – ground nutmeg 3/4 cup – light brown sugar 2 – eggs, beaten 1/2 cup – canola oil 1/2 cup – rice milk 1 tablespoon – bourbon vanilla extract 2 – peeled and diced medium sized apples
First, be sure to preheat your oven to 375ºF. Now, take a 12 cup muffin tin and line them all. Grab a large mixing bowl and whisk all the dry stuff together. Next, beat in the eggs and oil. After that, you’ll add the rice milk and vanilla extract. Continue beating for about two minutes, or until your mixtures is nice and smooth. Now, stir in the apple pieces and then spoon the batter into each muffin cup of the tin.
Place the tin on the center rack of your oven and bake for about 20 – 25 minutes depending on your oven. Look for the muffin tops to be dome shaped and firm to the touch. When ready, place them on a wire rack to cool, or enjoy them hot. Sift powdered sugar on top them after they have cooled down a bit, or use cinnamon sugar. This recipe makes one dozen muffins and you can also freeze any leftovers for later.
Butternut Pecan Scones
Ingredients: 1 cup – sorghum flour or brown rice flour 1/2 cup – almond flour 2/3 cup – tapioca starch 1/3 cup – organic light brown sugar 2 teaspoons – baking powder 1/2 teaspoon – baking soda 1/2 teaspoon – fine sea salt 1 teaspoon – xanthan gum 1 teaspoon – ground ginger 1 teaspoon – ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon – ground nutmeg 2/3 cup – butternut squash puree 2 – eggs, beaten 2 tablespoons – coconut oil or vegan butter 2 teaspoons – bourbon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon – lemon juice 2/3 cup – chopped pecans
First, preheat your oven to 375ºF. Next, take a cookie sheet and line it with parchment, or a baking mat. Take your large mixing bowl and whisk all the dry ingredients together. Now add the wet stuff and mix everything together until the dough is “workable”. Place the dough onto your lined cookie sheet. Wet your hands and smooth out the dough into a circle about 8-10 inches in diameter. Use a spatula, or wooden spoon to smooth out the edges. Press in the chopped pecans slightly and brush the top and sides with some coconut milk or rice milk, your preference. Sprinkle the top with organic raw sugar to make it nice and crusty.
Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into eight – ten slices and make sure there is a little space between each piece. Place on the center rack and bake for about 20 – 25 minutes until they are golden and firm to the touch. Serve them warm with your favorite vegan butter or homemade jam. This recipe makes 8 to 10 scones depending on how thick you like them and you can also freeze any leftovers.
For all your holiday party needs, call the experts that other Raleigh catering companies try to imitate, Catering By Design. Our menus are both fun and affordable. Call us today or just stop by the kitchen in Cary, NC.
The Southern Bridal Show and Expo wrapped up Sunday, April 6th. Magic and enchantment was in the air with over 150 vendors from the Triangle showing off the hottest wedding trends for 2014. Raleigh NC wedding catering ideas were provided by Catering by Design. Our menu samples received rave reviews from the brides, grooms and their families. We want to thank everyone who helped make the expo a success and a special thanks to all the brides and grooms that stopped by our booth. Below are some highlights from the Southern Bridal Show to give you a taste of the event. If you would like to see the entire event gallery, visit us on Pinterest!
Hot for 2014 are interactive food stations. We incorporated this wedding trend with our booth so guests could have fun and design their own plate with as much or little food as they liked. Here we featured delicious Beef Wrapped Portobellos with Sesame Ginger Demi Glaze, Smoked Chicken and Roasted Pepper Dip, Crostini, and various home made Humus and Salsas.
Live, Laugh, Eat! At Catering by Design, we serve your family with a smile. Here is a lovely group registering for our free China giveaway during the Southern Bridal Show and Expo!
Even simple wedding foods can have an air of elegance if displayed properly! Here our Cristinis are well lit by candles nestled between two complimenting dishes.
Pictured above is what we like to call “Summer In A Cup”. Our signature summer lemonade is a perfect beverage for summer weddings or corporate events. We combine basil, mint and edible flowers to give this lemonade a fresh and clean taste.
Raleigh NC Wedding Catering Super Tip: Edible flowers are great for the DIY caterer. Edible flowers add amazing color to your dishes and have a dramatic impact on your guests.
Fresh and local is our mantra. At Catering by Design, we are passionate about our food. That’s why we use only the freshest ingredients, sourced locally, to create incredible flavors. Here we featured some of our homemade salsa. Simple, fresh and delicious, this hor d’oeuvre works well for any catered event.
Catering by Design is a Wedding Wire Award Winning Caterer three years in a row – 2012, 2013 and 2014! We have menus that fit any budget! Contact us today, and let’s start planning a meal that you and your groom will remember for a life time!
When you’re learning about different catering companies to consider for your wedding, or anniversary or business event, don’t you find it helpful to see pictures showing the caterers in action – where they cater, what they serve, what they look like, how much they show on social media.
At Catering by Design our focus is on you – helping you know what’s possible and giving you what you want for your budget and vision.
We’ve invested to be able to show you what we’re doing. See for yourself. Click on the images to visit the different sites.
Call us at 919-481-2366 and ask us about catering your wedding.
Catering By Design is a full service caterer. We work with weddings both large and small, casual or extraordinarily elegant. We make everything about your event smooth and wonderful! Find out just how easy we make it.
For the Very Best Event….
Raleigh NC’s Catering by Design Wins Best Caterer Award for 2012