Holiday Season Prep

Chef preparing a dish of venison with apple and seasonal vegetables.

Getting ahead of the holiday season rush helps streamline day-to-day service, keeps budgets in check, and prevents last-minute crises.

  • Stock up! Kitchen workhorses like Ready-Set-Serve Diced Onions, Sliced Celery, Carrot Coins, and Peeled Garlic reduce back-of-house labor and storage space. Cross utilize them in stuffings, soups, stews, marinades, and salad dressings.
  • Upgrade Sides: Use the saved prep time to get creative with seasonal classics made with RSS Trimmed Green Beans, Sweet Baby Broccoli, Brussels Sprout Halves, and Broccoli Florets.
  • Meal Prep. Busy kitchens know that having ingredients ready to plate and garnish is critical. Poach pears, batch cook soups and casseroles, and when possible, order pre-washed and cut produce.

Seasonal Checklist

Certain ingredients are traditional during the holidays. Order ahead to ensure you’re covered for your customers’ favorite dish.

  • Thanksgiving: Apples, pears, winter squashes, cranberries, sage, and mushrooms.
  • Hanukkah: Russet potatoes, carrots, beets, fennel, oranges, shallots, and baby dill.
  • Christmas: Brussels sprouts, onions, celery, green beans, pomegranates, and rosemary.
  • Kwanzaa: Okra, collard greens, sweet potatoes, corn, and plantains.
  • New Year’s Eve: Asparagus, lemons, horse-radish root, leeks, radicchio, and spinach.

Diners are increasingly hyper-focused on high-protein and plant-based foods. Alongside all of the new-fangled, lab-based, cell-cultured options out there is the humble bean. A staple food for millenia, beans are being re-examined as a healthy, versatile ingredient worthy of menu inclusion.

  • Retro and heirloom recipes—like Southern succotash, French cassoulet, and Cajun red beans and rice—fit the bill for those in search of authenticity.
  • Most world cuisines incorporate some type of bean in their classic dishes. Think feijoada in Brazil, black beans and rice with plantains in Puerto Rico, and garbanzo beans in Israel. Modern interpretations of these recipes are packed with produce and herbs.
  • The creamy texture of mung beans is proving an ideal substitute for those that are eliminating soy from their diets.