Ordering Buffet Lunch in January

Ordering Buffet Lunch in January

December with its wonderfully indulgent food and treats for everyone has been and gone and now everyone has come back to work having given up sugar, carbs and caffeine, Mary in accounts has even gone vegan!

Never fear though, our healthy menus are the perfect health kick for the new year. We have put together carefully balanced menus that cater for every new dietary requirement, which you can order online for delivery the next day.

Top choices at this time of year include wraps, salads, fruit, yogurts and compotes, chicken skewers and crudities. And don’t forget we can provide plates, napkins and cutlery if you need them too.

Just give the B4B team a call and we will put together some suggestions to suit everyone, even Mary!

Veganuary hits the UK

Veganuary hits the UK


Whether it’s cutting out alcohol or deciding to actually use that gym membership, a new year usually comes all the usual new year resolutions. This year however, Veganuary has become the latest trend for those looking to bring in the New Year with a detox. 

With vegan options becoming cheaper, more widespread and more convenient and supermarkets revealing an increase in demand for meat and dairy free food, it’s no wonder that the organisers of Veganuary believe 2019 will be the year of the vegan.

According to the Vegan Society there are now 542,000 vegans in the UK, more than three times as many as a decade ago, and almost half of those are aged between 15 and 34. 

Record numbers have already signed up to Veganuary. Rich Hardy, head of campaigns at the charity, said that on the first day of 2019, 14,000 people pledged to go vegan for the month of January. That’s one person every six seconds. It comes as Waitrose reported five-fold increase in searches for vegan food on their website in the days running up to New Year and in Westminster, Greggs sold out of its new range of vegan sausage rolls within hours of rolling them out!

Apart from the obvious health benefits, there are many other reasons to go vegan. Joseph Poore, of Oxford University, said ‘A vegan diet is probably the single biggest way to reduce your impact on planet Earth – not just greenhouse gases but global acidification, eutrophication, land use and water use. It is far bigger than cutting down on your flights or buying an electric car.’

With so many people deciding to try vegan and so many reasons for doing it there’s no doubt that Veganuary is the healthiest start to the year and whatever your reason for doing it, we hope you’ll be successful. 

Find out more about Veganuary here https://veganuary.com/

January Foodie Diary

January Foodie Diary

At Buffets for business we regularly blog about our favourite farmers markets in the region, and so for 2019 we have asked our team to open up the ‘foodie diary’ to any local places of attraction for those of us that love quality food and drink – Here are the best suggestions for January 2019…

Windsor Farmers’ Market

Local fresh food and produce market run by Thames Valley Farmers’ Market developed in association with the Windsor and Eton Town Partnership.  Windsor Farmers’ Market offers a wide range of produce and is within easy walking distance of the town centre and residential area. Closest car park is at East Berks College off Trinity Place, a minute’s walk away.

Saturday 5th Jan

St Leonards Road 

Find out more

Chewton Glen Classics Cookery Class

Throughout Chewton Glen’s fifty-year history, a great food offering has been at the very top of the agenda. In this class The Kitchen at Chewton Glen reveal the secrets behind some of the most popular dishes served in The Dining Room inspired by Executive Head Chef Luke Matthew.

Thursday 24th Jan

New Milton

Find out more

Gardener’s Breakfast and Tour at Sir Harold Hillier Gardens

Enjoy a home cooked breakfast including juice, cereals, toast and tea or coffee. Learn gardening hints and tips from one of Sir Harold Hillier Gardens’ horticultural experts. After breakfast they will lead you on an exclusive seasonal garden tour showing you the very best of the winter highlights before they open to the public. You will then receive free entry to the Gardens for the rest of the day to enjoy exploring at your own leisure.

Throughout Jan

Romsey

Find out more

Winery Tour & Tasting at Hattingley Valley Vineyard 

Winery Tour and Tasting: visit Hattingley Valley Vineyard for an excellent appreciation of winemaking in England. They will give you an in-depth tour of their state-of-the-art winery explaining the production processes involved to create traditional method sparkling wine followed by a tasting of their current range.

Selected dates in Jan

Alresford

Find out more

What food’s in season in January?

What food’s in season in January?

Fruit: apples, blood orange, clementines, kiwi fruit, lemons, passion fruit, pears, pineapple, pomegranate, satsumas, tangerines, walnuts

Vegetables: beetroot, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celeriac, celery, Jerusalem artichoke, kale, leeks, parsnips, potatoes, rhubarb, turnip, shallots, squash, swede

Meat/poultry/fish: brill, clams, cockles, haddock, halibut, hake, John Dory, lemon sole, mussels, oysters, plaice, scallops, turbot, venison 

Why we eat seasonal…

  1. The taste. There’s no denying, when food is in season it tastes better. Much better.
  2. The cost. ‘Supply and demand’ means that when an abundance of produce is available the cost goes down.
  3. The nutritional value. Local in-season produce will be brighter, more vibrant and packed with more nutrients – studies have shown that the levels in some anti-oxidants such as Vitamin C, Folate and Carotenes rapidly decline when stored for periods of time. Nature also naturally provides us with what we need, for example, winter seasonal foods tend to contain Vitamin C and summer seasonal foods like salads, cool us down. Clever stuff.
  4. There’s less chemicals. Out of season food has to be imported and some countries have very relaxed laws about chemicals (the majority of which the UK has banned) being sprayed on fruits and vegetables.
  5. It’s better for the environment: Less transportation, less refrigeration, less hot houses, less irradiation of produce and all the time supporting local farming. What’s not to like?

All of these principles are very important to us at B4B when we create fresh daily buffets for our corporate clients across Hampshire, Berkshire, Sussex, Buckinghamshire, and Surrey.

B4B Christmas Opening Hours

B4B Christmas Opening Hours

The team at B4B will be delivering delicious lunch orders to our customers until 21stDecember this year, and open for breakfast orders until 10am on 24thDecember.

We are returning to work on January 2nd.

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Our tips to stop you over-indulging this Christmas.

Our tips to stop you over-indulging this Christmas.

  1. Stick to your usual breakfast

Most days over the Christmas break you’ll probably have a big lunch planned, so it’s a good idea to try avoid the temptation to have 3 mince pies for breakfast and have something small and healthy instead. Apart from boring stuff like it keeping your blood sugar steady, it allows you to eat more at lunch, which is always good.

  1. Drink plenty of water

In between all the other drinks inbibed over Christmas, you really should try and keep your water intake up too. The recommendation is 8 glasses a day but that’s quite difficult when there is so much wine open.  Staying hydrated is really important though not only to stay healthy but also to combat the effects that last egg nog.

  1. Eat sensible snacks

With chocolates, nuts, snacks and mince pies on every available surface, this is the hardest. So, before reaching for the nearest thing to you, apply some Far Eastern mindfulness and ask yourself do you really want it? Then try and make eating a conscious decision rather than just snacking for the heck of it. Or hide a few boxes of chocolate and replace them with bowls of fruit to give you some much needed vitamins. The kids’ll love you for it.

  1. Apply the 80:20 rule

Where possible try to apply the 80:20 rule, eating healthy options 80% of the time will help you enjoy the treats guilt free. Yeah, yeah, we did say try…

  1. Reduce your hangover

Mixing drinks is always something you regret in the morning. If you can stick to one type of alcoholic drink (and, for extra brownie points, have a water every 3rddrink), you’ll not only be the life of the party but won’t feel like death the next day either. And remember to eat, you need the nutrients to detoxify.

  1. Move

With so many films and TV shows on over Christmas there’s nothing better than all sitting on the sofa all day, but there’s only so many times you can watch E.T. (actually that’s a bad example, but you know what we mean). You need to get moving. There’s something rather lovely about wrapping up warm and going on a big family walk or, if you’re not feeling that energetic, maybe just playing some games that get you up, even if you just ask Auntie Jean for a dance around the living room to Jona Lewie, just get off the settee occasionally.

  1. Don’t stress

Enjoy your Christmas. Enjoy your time with the family. It really doesn’t matter if the sprouts are over-cooked, or if the kids get a bit excitable, or if Nan falls asleep at the table, or if Uncle Clive tells that joke again. Relax.

  1. Engage your brain

Games are brilliant. And Christmas is the one time in the year that the kids are more likely put down their phones and play with you. Choose a game that engages the whole family, Charades is a brilliant choice, it’s very funny and everyone can join in. Trivial Pursuit is good too although Dad always gets a bit competitive.

Our Recycled Plastic Policy

Our Recycled Plastic Policy

Nowadays, it seems all we hear in the media is that plastic, and more specifically, black plastic is bad – that it’s unrecyclable and that it’s terrible for the environment.

However that isn’t entirely correct.

At Buffets for Business, we use PET recycled black plastic which is made from recycled plastic bottles. It’s 100% recyclable and the fact that the material can be recycled many times over makes it very environmentally friendly packaging. This, we decided, was the best option for our business.

We did extensive research into other recyclable materials but realised they simply aren’t as good.

If we use cardboard, more trees are felled to keep with demand. Producing recycled vegetable pulp is a hugely costly process that just isn’t sustainable. Crockery trays need collecting, which means higher emissions, and these will ultimately end up in the ground.

So after a lot of consideration, we decided that the black plastic trays we use are the best product for the environment and the food. They’re the most hygienic, the best for keeping the food fresh, the most cost effective and lastly, the most environmentally friendly.

If we use recycled plastic and encourage more people to use it too, then we have more chance of keeping plastic out of the ocean and earth.

The perfect mince pie recipe

The perfect mince pie recipe

One of our favourite Xmas treats – Mince pies are easy to make, so have a go at homemade this year! This recipe is courtesy of Nigel Slater in the Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2002/dec/22/foodanddrink.shopping

A classic, made with rich shortcrust and eaten warm. After trying every new-fangled version, I reckon it is pretty much the perfect mince pie. Makes 18 small pies.

150g unsalted butter
300g plain flour
1 egg yolk
a little cold water
375g good-quality mincemeat 
icing sugar for dusting

You will also need a 12-hole tartlet tin, each hole measuring 6cm x 2cm deep. It is best to bake the pies in one batch of 12, then a second one of six.

Cut the butter into small pieces and rub it into the flour with your fingertips until you have what looks like coarse, fresh breadcrumbs. If you do this in the food processor it will take a matter of seconds. Add the egg yolk, then mix briefly with just enough water to bring to a smooth dough. You will probably need just 1 or 2 tablespoons. Bring the dough together into a firm ball, then knead it gently on a floured board for a couple of minutes until it softens. Reserve half of the dough, then roll the remainder out thinly. Set the oven at 200°C/gas mark 6.

Using cookie cutters or the top of an espresso cup, cut out 18 discs of pastry. (There may be a tiny bit left over.) Place 12 discs of the pastry in the tartlet tins, smoothing them up the sides so the edges stand very slightly proud of the tin. Fill each one with a dollop of mincemeat. A level tablespoon is probably all you will get into them, unless you have especially deep tins. Be generous. Roll out the remaining pastry and make a further 18 discs of pastry, reserving 6 of them for the second batch. Slightly dampen each of these round the edge with cold water then lay them over each tart and press firmly to seal the edges.

Cut a small slit in the centre of each pie and bake for 20 minutes till golden. Let them calm down for a few minutes, then slide them out of their tins with a palette knife and serve warm, dusted with icing sugar. Repeat with the remaining pastry and mincemeat.

Enjoy!

Christmas Foodie Diary

Christmas Foodie Diary

While we visit local food markets all year and choice really ramps up in December. Here is a list of our favourites to get some fantastic local produce for the feast table and some lovely gifts!

Festive Market, Lexicon, Bracknell
Up until Christmas Eve
Luxury shopping mall The Lexicon are holding their first festive markets this year. In addition to the shopping and eating offering the complex already holds, a sea of festive stalls will descend for the season. Visit for delicious sweet treats, personalised Christmas decorations and gifts you won’t find elsewhere.

Artisan Market, Newbury
Up until December 9th
Newbury Artisan Market has added an extra date for Christmas due to high demand. The home of all things handmade, fresh and local, the Newbury market is the place to go for gifts that live and breathe Berkshire. Christmas sights and smells mingle to create one of the most buzzing markets in the region.

Christmas Fair, Ascot Racecourse
Up until December 2nd
With an incredible 150 companies present, you’ll truly need the entire day to experience the Christmas Fair at Ascot. With a delightful mix of boutique outlets selling plenty for every member of the family, you’re sure to give the most unique gifts under the tree this Christmas. There is also plenty for foodies, with an entire floor dedicated to edible gifts — and hungry shoppers!

Christmas Fair, Arlington, Business Park
December 5th
2018 is set to be Arlington’s biggest Christmas Fayre ever, with organisers hoping to see 80 stalls of festive goodies take over the business park for a day of shopping and Christmas cheer. The selection of scrumptious stalls will include homemade jam, cheeses, crafts and clothing, as well as stock from a selection of popular local boutiques. Lucky shoppers will also have the opportunity to make friends with a family of reindeer.

Christmas Market, Winchester Cathedral
Up until December 20th
No guide to Hampshire’s Christmas markets would be complete without including the festivities at Winchester Cathedral. Open from 10.30am to 8pm (Thu-Sat) and 10.30am to 6.30pm (Sun-Wed), it is inspired by traditional German Christmas markets and welcomes around half a million visitors each year.

 

What food’s in season in December?

What food’s in season in December?

Fruit: Apples (Bramley), Clementines, Cranberries (end of season), Passion fruit, Pears, Pomegranate, (coming into season)

Vegetables: Celeriac, Beetroot, Brussel sprouts, Cauliflower, Celery, Kale, Leeks, Mushrooms (wild), Parsnips, Potatoes (maincrop), Shallots, Swede, Turnips

Meat: Duck, Goose, Rabbit, Turkey, Venison

Fish and Seafood: Haddock, Mussels, Scallops, Oysters 

Why we eat seasonal…

  1. The taste. There’s no denying, when food is in season it tastes better. Much better.
  2. The cost. ‘Supply and demand’ means that when an abundance of produce is available the cost goes down.
  3. The nutritional value. Local in-season produce will be brighter, more vibrant and packed with more nutrients – studies have shown that the levels in some anti-oxidants such as Vitamin C, Folate and Carotenes rapidly decline when stored for periods of time. Nature also naturally provides us with what we need, for example, winter seasonal foods tend to contain Vitamin C and summer seasonal foods like salads, cool us down. Clever stuff.
  4. There’s less chemicals. Out of season food has to be imported and some countries have very relaxed laws about chemicals (the majority of which the UK has banned) being sprayed on fruits and vegetables.
  5. It’s better for the environment:Less transportation, less refrigeration, less hot houses, less irradiation of produce and all the time supporting local farming. What’s not to like?

All of these principles are very important to us at B4B when we create fresh daily buffets for our corporate clients across Hampshire, Berkshire, Sussex, Buckinghamshire, and Surrey.