When thinking of breakfast, one of the first foods that comes to mind is most likely pancakes. The vision of a mouthwatering short stack dripping with syrup and a pat of melting butter is the traditional image, but why not expand the pancake horizon? The simplicity of unadorned pancake batter is the perfect place to start when developing a delicious and contemporary new savory dish, featuring on-trend contrasts in flavor and texture.
The addition of unique and flavorful savory ingredients is a great way to enhance the traditional pancake. One example of an ingredient that can transform a regular pancake into a tasty and interesting breakfast is...bacon. Adding bacon pieces into a standard pancake batter incorporates just the right amount of saltiness and texture making them even more delicious. Pancakes can also transition onto your lunch menu. Consider replacing a traditional ham and cheese sandwich with a ham and cheese pancake made with aged white cheddar cheese, diced ham, and caramelized onions.
Another technique for transporting pancakes into other day and menu parts is to experiment with different types of flours and grains in the batter. Using flours such as whole wheat, potato, rye, almond or rice is a simple way to create variation. If health is important consider adding the extremely popular quinoa; when added to pancakes it adds an extra dose of protein and a filling heartiness to the dish.
Although maple syrup on pancakes is delicious, consumers are looking for an innovation and creativity in their food that is equally tempting. One way to kick-up your pancakes a notch is to add a touch of the unexpected by incorporating a savory and tasty sauce or topping, such as chili on a cornmeal based pancake.
Nontraditional variations such as potato pancakes are another creative option. Not only are potatoes inexpensive, but also they are a comfort food for many. Using ingredients already on hand in an innovative application is a great way to keep food costs down while still delighting the customer. The mainstream appetizer, potato skins, are without a doubt delicious but lack inspiration. With the same ingredients, make loaded potato pancakes using bacon, green onions, cheddar cheese and sour cream. Simple changes can make a big impact on the appeal of a menu.
A relative of pancakes, crepes are another traditionally sweet dish that transitions wonderfully with the addition of savory flavors. Using crepes as an alternative to pancakes is a great way to incorporate different proteins into a menu. Stuffing crepes with meats such as chicken or chorizo, flavorful cheeses like Fontina or gouda and fresh vegetables like asparagus and leeks make a great enhancement to a menu.
Whichever pancake variation or spin-off is incorporated into a menu, there is no doubt that customers will appreciate the addition of current culinary trends. Savory pancakes may be your next signature dish, and your ticket to a more successful business.
Sausage Pancake Benedict- A mini buttermilk pancake topped with turkey sausage, a velvety hollandaise sauce, and garnished with fresh chives.
Hearty Ham and Gruyere Crepe- A savory crepe filled with diced ham, shredded gruyere cheese, sauteed mushrooms and topped with a creamy mornay sauce.
NEVADA, IA---Burke Corporation, leader in fully cooked meat products and pizza toppings, has named Brad Beuter Product Development Manager.
In his new position, Beuter will lead a team developing precooked meat toppings for customers, matching and customizing flavor, texture and cost profiles. Beuter was previously Production Supervisor, overseeing day-to-day operations on the Burke production line.
“Brad’s experience with Burke’s production capabilities will continue Burke’s dedication to efficiency,” said Casey Frye, Vice President of Research and Development. “His knowledge of the process is critical to assuring customers that our product will always work for their applications.”
“I’m looking forward to understanding market demands and anticipate building great partnerships as we bring our customers’ ideas to fruition,” said Beuter.
A graduate of Iowa State University, Beuter received a degree in agricultural science. He has been a member of the Burke team for six years and brought more than sixteen years of food industry experience to the organization.
For more information about Burke fully cooked meat products, visit www.BurkeCorp.com.
Once an unusual and mostly unheard of food item, hummus is now widely popular and eaten frequently throughout America. According to Information Resources Inc. (IRI) in 2012 hummus sales were up to $530 million, a 25% increase from 2010. With statistics like this it's no secret that hummus is a hot trend right now.
The recent demand for hummus is generating creative variations and uses for this popular blend of chickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans), tahini (sesame seed butter), olive oil, lemon juice, and salt. Hummus is being infused with ingredients like garlic, roasted red pepper, avocado, cilantro, jalapeno, and basil just to name a few variations.
Along with incorporating different flavors into traditional hummus, it's used for more than just a dip for vegetables and pita bread/chips. Hummus is being used as a replacement for mayonnaise or mustard on sandwiches or burgers, an alternative to tomato sauce on pizza, and a new and interesting topping for pasta.
Hummus is commonly associated with vegetarian or vegan diets, but hummus is a great ingredient to use in dishes containing meat. The creamy texture of hummus is a great compliment to many different animal proteins. If you are looking for someting new and creative to add to your menu, keep hummus in mind.
Grilled Vegatable and Chicken Wrap- Grilled bell peppers, onions, zucchini, and chicken breast strips fill a whole wheat wrap spread with a cilantro lime hummus.
Humble Hummus Pie-A thin layer of garlic-flavored hummus combined with all beef bias-sliced Italian-style links, black olives, green peppers and a combination of feta and mozzarella cheeses.
Request a Sample at www.burkecorp.com
Photo credit www.simplerecipes.com
It's noon, you're starving, and of course you didn't have time to pack a lunch due to a particularly early morning at the office. The restaurant across the street sounds good, but who has time to sit down for lunch in the middle of the week? You know the nearest drugstore only has candy bars and chips, and the thought of another soggy sandwich from the vending machine is almost enough to make you skip lunch altogether. You decide that having some questionably old chocolate from your desk drawer will have to do. This completely wrecks your healthy eating plan, oh well, there's protein in chocolate...right?
This is one example of a lost opportunity during the lunch day-part. Situations similar to the one above are happening every day. Many consumers are more than willing to purchase pre-made meals from gas stations, drugstores, or supermarkets, but only if they meet their set of standards. People eating on the go are not only looking for something fast and portable, they want food that is fresh, delicious, and healthy.
What exactly constitutes the freshness in fresh prepared food? Retailers are throwing around words like fresh and wholesome, but what do those words really mean when they are describing our meals? Unfortunately, there is not one set definition for fresh when it comes to food. Each merchandiser has to choose how it wants to describe fresh to its own customers. According to "Fresh Prepared Foods: A Growth Driver for Your Company", a white paper produced by ATKearney and Technomic, there are four ways to characterize fresh when it comes to prepared food.
- In-store preparation
- In-store finish
- Commissary model
- Food processor model
In-store preparation (procuring the basic ingredients and assembling the product in store) is probably what most consumers expect when they picture their grab-n-go options being prepared. Although this may be the most appealing method when making fresh prepared food, it is not always the most practical for the retailer from a management or a financial perspective. In-store preparation requires dedicated space, expertise and training. Additionally there are many costs associated with in-store preparation such as increased labor costs and increased waste from using raw ingredients.
In-store finish operations are shipped frozen food and then complete the food prep in store. The preparation typically involves thawing or reheating the food before sale to the customer. There can also be some in-store assembly, adding ingredients to a basic platform. For example, the store could add pre-cooked sausage or fresh vegetables to a pre-prepared frozen cheese pizza. The option of using some or all frozen ingredients decreases the amount of waste and can be a great solution for merchandisers offering fresh prepared food.
The commissary model uses centralized kitchens to make and deliver fresh prepared food to stores, or partners with a local fresh food provider. Using the commissary model can help resolve inventory issues that arise when implementing the in-store preparation model.
The fourth option is the food processor model. Retailers would connect with a major food processor that can produce fresh prepared meal options. This can be a good option for those wanting consistency and are willing to create a relationship with a large food processor and distributor.
Implementing fresh prepared foods into any retail foodservice establishment takes some work and lots of planning. The four methods mentioned above all have their strengths and weaknesses, but retailers must determine which strategy will work best in their own situation. It may take time before a fresh prepared food segment runs smoothly, but there is no doubt that grab-n-go options are a hot foodservice trend.
Visit www.burkecorp.com to request a sample of Burke's Fully Cooked Meats to incorporate into your fresh prepared food offerings!
Think outside the crust when using sausage pizza toppings! The convenience that fully cooked sausage brings to preparing pizza can, and should, span over more areas of your menu. Consumers know quality pizza, but why not incorporate fully cooked sausage pizza toppings into your appetizers, sandwiches, and entrees? Doing so is easy for you and delicious for your customers.
Expand Your Menu
Tired of chicken or beef nachos? Use coarse-ground sausage instead for a unique variation. Want to upgrade a typical bruschetta recipe? Add Italian sausage for a more filling and flavorful appetizer. Need a new and delicious sandwich option? Replace traditional deli meats with sausage for a creative menu choice. Using fully cooked sausage pizza topping is a great way to expand your menu, and attract customers looking for fresh and creative menu ideas.
Menu Ideas for Inspiration
2 AM Buffalo Sausage Nachos: Home-made tortilla chips layered with Monterrey jack cheese,ranch dressing, Coarse-Ground Mild Italian Sausage tossed in hot sauce, celery, carrots, blue cheese crumbles and sour cream.
Italian Sausage Bruschetta: Crusty sliced french bread topped with fresh mozzarella, chopped tomatoes, Italian Sausage crumble, fresh basil, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar.
Mushroom and Pesto Sausage Toastie: Italian Sausage, and sautéed mushrooms and onions are sandwiched between two pieces of whole grain bread spread with pesto and red onion and mushroom infused cream cheese. This delicious sandwich is then toasted to a golden perfection.
Cheesy Sausage Crisps: Wonton wraps topped with a light layer of whipped cream cheese, mozzarella cheese, banana peppers and Spicy Italian Sausage. Baked right in your pizza oven.
Not only is sausage a classic and popular pizza topping, but it can also be used to create high quality, artisan pizzas as well as many other menu items. Fully cooked sausage is a consumer approved and versatile ingredient.
Request a sample here.
The craft beer category has seen healthy growth in the last few years in America. During the same time, import brands have been flat and domestic beer behemoths have experienced declines. This points to an increase inconsumers’ desire to explore new flavors and their need to find unique, hand-crafted products. Pizza operations can take advantage of this trend to offer beers that match the high quality coming out of the oven.
During the 2013 Pizza Expo, a craft beer roundtablelead by Greg Koch fromStone Brewery, Dan Kopeman from Schlafly Brewing, and Chris Sommers from Pi Pizzeria helped to explain the benefits of upgrading the beer selection at any pizza restaurant.
By offering a better beer selection, an operator makes an impression. Patrons need to know that the operation cares about quality and how that translates into great pizza and great beverages. Consumers have good taste; they just need the opportunity to be exposed to better products. And when they are, loyalty to a pizza restaurant goes up exponentially. Do all the products you offer match the quality of your pizza?
By utilizing more valuable real estate on the tap row for craft beer, operators can drive higher profits. Craft beer drinkers bring 36% higher check averages, and craft beer generally sells more quickly than the “regular” domestic brands. A pint of craft beer sells for more, and coupled with the brisk sales, a keg of craft beer will drive income that helps the operation “break even” 25% more quickly on a craft beer keg than a keg of lesser-quality beer. Would you like to attract patrons that are not only more loyal, but spend more each time they visit?
Offering craft beer as a complement to outstanding pizza will only bring positive benefits to an operation. Consumers that care about better food and want to try new things will be drawn in and will remain loyal to return again and again. The bottom line will benefit as well because craft beer drinkers equal higher check averages, and craft beer sells more quickly at a higher price than the “usual suspects”. Incorporating craft beer into your pizza business shows your good taste and will drive good profits.
To find the perfect pizza recipe to pair up with your craft beer selection and request a sample of our high-quality pre-cooked meats, visit burkecorp.com
NEVADA, Iowa---Burke Corporation, leader in fully cooked meat products, has announced that
Amanda Lockhart will be Director of Quality Assurance and Technical Services. Lockhart joins the Burke team to oversee food safety and quality systems and support the operations, sales and marketing groups.
“Amanda’s deep experience and knowledge of food safety and quality systems will help lead our outstanding Burke team in its continuing commitment to excellence for our customers,” said President David Weber.
A Kansas State University graduate, Lockhart comes to Burke from Hormel Corporate Quality Assurance, where she served as Food Safety and Quality Audit Coordinator traveling to perform food safety and quality systems audits of manufacturers and ingredient suppliers. Formerly, as Quality Control Supervisor and, HACCP Coordinator for Hormel, she was the plant liaison to the local USDA officials and played an integral role in developing and maintaining food safety, quality systems and process control programs.
"I am enthusiastic about continuing to meet Burke's uncompromising standards," said Lockhart. "I'm passionate about protecting and promoting the products we supply, and I know the Burke team will continue to meet and exceed the demands of our industry by providing exceptional, great-tasting products to our customers."
For more information about Burke fully cooked meat products, visit www.BurkeCorp.com.
Snacking has become more and more popular in recent years. Americans are beginning to stray away from eating three square meals and are snacking or grazing throughout the day. In a recent article of Flavor & The Menu, Melissa Abbot of The Hartman Group states, "We are placing much greater emphasis on snacks over traditional meals now." Restaurants are picking up on the evolution of eating patterns and are adjusting their menus to reflect this current restaurant trend.
In a survey conducted by Technomic, 48% of consumers snack at least twice a day. As part of the trend of frequent snacking, consumers are expanding the types of food they consider acceptable for snacking. No longer limiting themselves to "traditional" snack foods, such as a granola bar or potato chips, snackers are seeking out smaller portions of restaurant entrées and bar bites or tapas. Consumers find that small plates and bar bites not only tide them over until the next meal, but also they provide a higher quality snacking experience. Incorporating snacking and bar bites into your menu is a great way to satisfy consumers' needs, stay current by incorporating popular trends in, and increase restaurant revenues during typically slow periods of service.
Get Creative and Boost Sales
Bar bites, which are obviously popular during cocktail or happy hours, are also becoming a part of the late night dining experience. Tempting patrons with upscale bar food is a great way to increase the check average of customers who are frequenting the bar. Tempting consumers with a small bite while they are enjoying a beer or cocktail is a smart financial move.
Bar bites and small plates are also a great way to add some creativity into your menu. Chefs have the opportunity to experiment with innovative techniques and ingredients without the complication of significant menu changes. Customers also appreciate trying something new or creative in a smaller portion size. There is less of a financial commitment, so customers can try a variety of different mini dishes without breaking the bank. Snacking portions and small plates may also inspire a customer to purchase a starter for the meal. And when they leave your restaurant, satisfied customers will keep you in mind for future visits as they remember the great experience and the opportunity to try something new and different.
Adding a snacking or bar bite menu is another way to differentiate your establishment from the competition. The pizzeria down the street may have good pizza, but do they have a variety of snacking options for those looking for something other than a good slice?
Small Plate Inspiration
Caprese Meatball Sliders- Italian-style meatballs layered with basil and marinara sauce and topped with fresh mozzarella on a slider bun.
Antipasto Sausage Skewers- A skewer filled with Coarse-Ground Mild & Spicy Italian Sausage, artichoke hearts, olives, cherry tomatoes and red onions. Baked in a pizza oven, then drizzled with Italian dressing and served with red pepper Asiago cheese and pepperoncini.
Chorizo Cheese Dates- Plump dates with their caramel-like flavors are filled with creamy, nutty blue cheese and Hand-Pinched Style® Chorizo Sausage then warmed in the oven until the cheese is soft and smooth.
Corn and Sausage Fritters-A golden and crispy corn fritter with Hand-Pinched Style® Italian Sausage, red onion, red bell pepper, and seasoned with cumin, dill, cheddar cheese along with a garnish of sour cream.
Almond and Apricot Chicken Crostini- Sliced French bread covered with apricot preserves, a slice of Gouda, and chicken breast strips are baked until the cheese is gooey and bubbling. This small bite is then garnished with sliced almonds, and drizzled with a balsamic reduction.
Request a sample today.
When it seems like there is a new pizza place popping up around every corner how does your pizza stand out in the crowd? Do you have a house specialty pizza, a top secret sauce recipe, or locally sourced ingredients? Another way to differentiate yourself from the pizza down the street is to offer specialty or gourmet pizza crusts. Pizza topping choices are practically endless, the next logical step is to bring some of that innovation to the crust. Developing a pizza crust with a flavor profile beyond the norm is bound to create a pizza with more interesting layers of flavor.
Better Crust=Better Business
Offering unique crust options is a great way to attract new customers. For instance, hearing about a Mexican style pizza on a polenta infused dough might spark a potential customer's interest and taste buds. Americans love a good slice of traditional pizza with a white crust, tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and ever popular toppings such as pepperoni and Italian sausage. But today consumers are also looking for variation and creativity when it comes to their food. Give your customers the choice to upgrade their favorite classics with a different crust. Pizza is the perfect platform to use due to its universal craveability and infinite possibilities.
In addition to considering variations of standard pizza dough, think about all of the different bread options that can translate into pizza crusts. Flatbread is becoming more mainstream as a pizza carrier. Pizza Hut just launched its new "Firebaked Style Flatbread Pizza". Naan bread, pretzel rolls and bread, and lavash (an Armenian flat bread) are all gaining momentum with sandwich applications and are also good candidates for pizzas as well. Keeping up with and incorporating trends into your menu is necessary to stay relevant and fresh in the ever changing restaurant industry.
Experiment with some new dough recipes and formulations--who knows, you may discover your pizzeria's next big money maker.
A puff pastry crust topped with apricots, ricotta, almonds, maple and bacon pieces.
For a light and crisp pizza use phyllo dough topped with olive tapenade, Jarlsberg cheese, baby portabellas, sweet red peppers and Bias-Sliced Andouille Links.
Use herbed focaccia bread for a new twist on a classic sausage pizza with tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella cheese, sundried tomatoes, Italian sausage and finished with fresh arugula.
Request a sample at www.burkecorp.com for Fully Cooked Pizza Toppings to use on your new dough creations!
While sausage is usually considered to be very traditional as a pizza topping, it also is the perfect addition to new and trendy pizzas. Restaurateurs find that fully cooked sausage is a convenient way to make one of America's favorite dishes delicious, flavorful and trendy. While traditional one topping pizzas are still widely popular, artisan and specialty varieties are now on the pizza trend radar. What exactly is an artisan pizza? There are many different definitions, but to put it simply, it's pizza with an emphasis on high quality, flavorful and upgraded ingredients. Hand made crusts, locally sourced vegetables, inventive sauces, a variety of cheeses and premium proteins are just a few of the descriptors that resonate with consumers who are looking for an artisan-style pizza.
In addition to the higher quality artisan options, specialty pizzas are also gaining popularity. Buffalo Chicken, Chicken Bacon Ranch, BBQ varieties and pizzas loaded with fresh produce are being ordered more frequently. Pizza lovers are hungry for new approaches to their favorite food. Not only is pizza considered a comfort food, but also it can be a platform for other comfort foods such as macaroni and cheese or steak and potatoes. The versatility of pizza is being discovered by both pizzerias and consumers.
Custom and Convenient
Pizza is a natural for the expanding fast casual restaurant segment. With convenience being a top priority for customers, especially Millennials, the fast-casual format provides the ease and speed busy consumers require. The Millennial demographic is also known for wanting to customize meals and to try new and different flavors; pizza offers the perfect canvas. Price is another important aspect when dining away from home. Fast casual restuarants, such as Blaze Pizza or Pie Five Pizza Co. are experiencing success with fast and customizable pizzas at an affordable price. Custom, convenient, fast, and better are the qualities that pizza consumers are looking for today.
Fully cooked sausage is a great protein to incorporate into artisan and specialty pizzas. Burke’s Hand-Pinched Style® Italian Sausage and Coarse-Ground Italian Sausage make it easy to add a custom, hand-make look to every pizza, which satisfies customers seeking superior quality. Since Burke products are fully cooked they also cut down on the time it takes to get customers a safe and delicious meal.
Artisan Pizza Menu Ideas
Simply Artisan Sausage Pizza: The Coarse-Ground Mild Italian Sausage rounds out a pizza bursting with the delicious flavors of creamy mozzarella cheese, black olives, artichoke hearts, and fresh oregano.
Caprese Sausage Pizza: Hand-Pinched Style® Italian Sausage tops a pizza with fresh mozzarella, sliced heirloom tomatoes, and leaves of fresh basil.
Rustic Blue Cheese and Arugula Pizza: Fresh arugula and tangy blue cheese compliment the Coarse Ground Spicy Sausage on this modern, yet traditional pizza.
Deluxe Vodka Sauce Sicilian Pizza: Vodka sauce is topped with Spicy Coarse-Ground Italian Sausage, Sliced Pepperoni, seared mushrooms, grilled red onions, fresh mozzarella and finished with fresh, torn basil.
Mediterranean Fusion Pizza: Mediterranean and Italian flavors are combined on this delicious pizza topped with a Coarse Ground Mild Sausage, roasted red peppers, feta and parmesan cheese, and finished with fresh basil.
Request a sample today.