Tag Archives: Food

Why restaurants want you to order food on your phone

22 Nov


An order placed by an app is shown on the screen Sept. 12, 2016, at the Eastman Egg restaurant at Ogilvie Transportation Center in Chicago. Eastman’s app technology allows a customer to order at any time and the food is prepared only when the customer gets close to the restaurant. (Jose M. Osorio / Chicago Tribune)

The ability to order food with the click of a few buttons on a smartphone is becoming widespread — even fast-food companies are getting in on the action. But the technology — which in some cases tracks a customer’s location and times food preparation accordingly — can vary widely. And restaurants admit that some customers are still wary about the freshness of their food when ordering ahead..

“I think some users assume (their food) would be sitting on that counter for them because that’s how most in the industry do it,” said Eastman Egg founder and CEO Hunter Swartz, who focused on a mobile app as a cornerstone of the Chicago restaurant’s development. “As much as we had to educate the public about our food, there’s been just as much education for the app.”

Mobile ordering is becoming a critical piece of many restaurants’ plans because of what it can bring in improved sales. Customers spend more and visit more often, on average, when they’re using a phone to order their food.

The first restaurants to make mobile a big part of their business were the ones that rely heavily on delivery: pizza makers. At Domino’s, you can order just by texting an emoji of pizza or opening their app; no clicking required. Pizza Hut and Papa John’s have made big advances, too, and all three credit about half their sales to mobile orders.

Few restaurants are as far along as the delivery operators, but many have advanced their own apps by leaps and bounds to capture more customers on the go.

Starbucks launched mobile pay through its app a year ago, and it now accounts for about 5 percent of sales, Chief Financial Officer Scott Maw said at a conference last week. That jumps to 20 percent of transactions at peak times at several hundred of its urban stores. It expects that number to accelerate quickly in the near future, as customers get more comfortable with the technology. A quarter of Starbucks’ customer payments already are made with its smartphone app.

Maw also said Starbucks’ app eventually will be able to use weather data to market different food and drink items to customers, like a pumpkin spice latte on a chilly October day.

In June, Dunkin’ Donuts debuted mobile ordering nationwide and Chick-fil-A launched a new app with mobile ordering capabilities. Taco Bell has had mobile ordering capabilities on its app since 2014, but sister company KFC doesn’t offer it. McDonald’s, the world’s largest burger chain, has been testing its own mobile ordering system since the spring and has said that digital initiatives are a big priority in the near future.

Among fast-food restaurants, the frequency of customer visits increases by 6 percent and average spending per visit rises by about 20 percent when technology is used to place an order, according to a Deloitte survey released this week. Visits tend to increase because technology makes it easier to repeat an order automatically, while repeat orders of custom or upgraded drinks lead to increased sales.

In addition to an expected sales boost, the data collected from mobile ordering apps can shine light on the makeup of customers.


Rio’s favelas to Brighton’s North Laine: the entrepreneurs tackling food waste

20 Aug

Situated in the run-down district of Lapa, Rio de Janeiro, Refettorio Gastromotiva is the latest venture from three Michelin-starred Italian chef Massimo Bottura, who has partnered with a social enterprise which trains chefs from disadvantaged neighbourhoods across Brazil.

The restaurant, which opened on 9 August, uses surplus food from the Olympic village to feed hungry locals, aided by a collection of superstar chefs. It’s one of a collection of social businesses across the world that are trying to tackle the food waste problem and change attitudes to waste.

The latest statistics paint a bleak picture. A third of all food produced – 1.3bn tonnes – is wasted every year, while 795 million people do not have enough to eat. Nearly half of this waste comes from homes, with the remainder from food production, food retailers and the hospitality sector.

Refettorio Gastromotiva will follow a similar business model to Bottura’s first project, Refettorio Ambrosiano, which launched last year. Ambrosiano provides paid lunches to the public in order to provide free evening meals to local homeless shelters, using donated food from Milan agricultural market and a network of supermarkets, restaurants and schools. So far it has saved 30 tonnes of food and provided 23,000 meals.

Post-Olympics, Refettorio Gastromotiva will do the same. Opening once a week initially, it will use donated waste food from a supermarket chain, fruit and vegetable wholesaler and local organic farmer to cook paid-for lunches, allowing it to provide 70 free evening meals for vulnerable Lapa residents. The kitchen will be staffed by graduates from the social enterprise Gastromotiva’s chef training scheme, who come from some of Rio’s most underprivileged communities.

Attempting to tackle the issue of food waste from the opposite direction, Silo in Brighton was billed as the first “zero-waste” restaurant in the UK and is primarily concerned with designing out food waste.

A meal served up at Silo Restaurant, Brighton. Photograph: Karen Robinson for the Observer

With a carefully planned, seasonal menu along with a root-to-tip, nose-to-tail ethos of using every available part of each ingredient, sometimes more than once, what’s left over is poured into the hi-tech composter in the corner of the restaurant, which churns out compost that is distributed to suppliers and locals, as well as used by the restaurant to grow its own mushrooms.

Tom Hunt’s Poco cafe bars in London and Bristol also take a zero-waste approach, weighing all of the food waste produced. The Bristol restaurant creates just 20.83kg of food waste a day, equating to around 0.2kg per diner, less than half that produced by the average restaurant diner according to the Sustainable Restaurant Association.

These kind of ventures are changing perceptions of food waste, says Tom Tanner from the Sustainable Restaurant Association: “Consumers have started to see [food waste] as socially and morally inexcusable and economically, businesses can see that it no longer makes sense.” With the global value of wasted food estimated to be $1tn, there is a financial opportunity.

It’s not just restaurants that are involved. Toast Ale, created by Tristram Stuart, food waste activist and founder of food waste charity Feedback, aims to turn some of this waste back into a product that can be sold. Made using one slice of surplus bread per bottle, the 32,000 bottles of ale brewed since launching in January have saved over a tonne of bread.

“In addition to using surplus, we are also raising awareness,” says Zane. “In the UK, 44% of bread produced is never eaten. To solve this, all we need to do is eat (or drink) it.” Toast Ale’s bread is donated by bakeries and sandwich manufacturers who would otherwise have to pay to dispose of the waste. There are plans to expand production to Yorkshire, Cornwall, Bristol, New York and Iceland.

How About Stewed Conch ?

15 Dec

The word Bahamas is attributed to the Spanish “baja mar,” or under the sea. Accordingly, seafood was a prominent factor in this meal. Amazing we got through eleven meals before cooking fresh treats from the ocean. And by all accounts, the seafood that defines Bahamian cuisine is the conch — pronounced conk. To find this and other ingredients such as sour orange, I biked up to south Williamsburg and to the inimitable Food Bazaar. Aside from bird peppers and fresh guava, I found everything I needed, and even then I found acceptable substitutes in scotch bonnet peppers and frozen guava paste. I don’t think I managed to get as much meat as I should have, the one pound of crawfish yielded at most two ounces of crawfish tails, and given that the recipe calls for two tails, I’m pretty sure that the crawfish they get in the Bahamas are much bigger. Anyway, it was tasty and tangy and spicy and a great start into the meal.

For a country so small, what a doozy it turned out to be. As it turns out, Brussels is nothing like Nassau, and ingredients that are commonplace in the latter are well nigh impossible to find in the former. After much careful substitution, reading and strategising, I bring you my unique twist on a classic Bahamian dish: deep-fried conch. Queen conch is classified, in many parts of the Caribbean, as an endangered species. You’re not allowed to catch it anywhere in the United States, and its export is prohibited in the Cayman islands and quite a few other places. This is probably one of the reasons that I was unable to find conch anywhere in Brussels, much to my disappointment. On the other hand, I did manage to find whelks, a fellow marine gastropod (that’s sea snail to you and me). Whelks used to be fairly commonly eaten in the UK, Belgium, and France, although they’ve fallen out of favour in recent decades.

I’d certainly never eaten them, and wouldn’t have thought to give them a try otherwise. Having heard how similar they are to conch (although apparently slightly fishier, tougher and less sweet), I felt compelled to make turn Bahamian cracked conch into cracked whelk instead. The batter is light, crispy and flavourful. But whelks are definitely an acquired taste – it smells really strongly of fish, and tastes briny. It is also quite chewy, so you really need to pound it with that mallet. It actually tastes like a fishier version of deep-fried oysters, which can be very good indeed. If I had to make it again, I think I’d make it with calamari or another slightly subtler seafood. A conch can live up to 25 years ,different from human,others animal love conch also like stingrays ,but the question is many people ask how to get a conch out of its shell? All u need is a hatchet to put a hole at the top of the shell,an u take a knife insets it in the hole,an u push the conch out,an then u see the beauty of the conch,nice an tender meat,an one amazing fact is that a conch don’t have no bone,its all muscle an a delicacy food.

Sea Food Good is for Health?

12 Oct

A lot of nutrients are present in sea foods. So, some experts argue that sea food can help to decrease the risk of heart problems. Eating seafood two times a week is great for the heart according to the Institute of Medicine in Washington, US. According to the Institute, the types of fishes that should be eaten are shellfishes.

For human health, omega-3 fatty acids are necessary but it cannot be formed by the body. So, omega-3 fatty acids must be obtained from food. Omega-3 fatty acids are present in fish and seafood. Oily seafood such as salmon, trout, mackerel, sardines, herring, tuna, anchovies, tiger prawns and blue mussels are excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids.

Studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids may be helpful to treat a variety of diseases. Mainly, it is helpful to treat heart disease and problems that contribute to heart disease. However, it is also advantageous for people who suffer from high cholesterol, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, arthritis and osteoporosis.

Some people approve seafood as it supplies nutrition and protein that’s essential for the body while several other people disapprove it. In most of fishes, toxic mercury level is so high which is the most potent argument against seafood utilization. It is also pointed out by experts that some fishes like tuna, and swordfish etc. has more mercury level than other varieties. According to the US Food and Drug Administration and Environmental Protection Agency, women and young kids must not consume too much of swordfish, mackerel and shark.

Specific instructions are provided by health experts and dieticians for pregnant women. Cognitive defects in the fetus and kids can be produced by eating too much of sea food that contain a high level of mercury. A harmful agent, methyl mercury is found in larger variety of fishes like shark which is also known to cause delay in the development of growing children. On the other hand, adults stand the risk of experiencing heart problems, kidney and nervous system functions.

Due to its so many risks, eating of sea food is safe or not? According to experts, it might be safe to eat aquatic food preparations or seafood, but with some restraint. Also, the amount of utilization based on the physical condition of a certain person.


Planting foods

6 Oct

Beverages brought from home or purchased before reaching the security checkpoint in a 3 oz. or smaller container and in your quart-size, zip-top plastic bag. Canned or jarred goods such as soup, sauces, peanut butter, fruits, vegetables and jellies – 3 oz. or smaller. Cheese in pressurized containers, Jell-O’s, pudding, whipping cream, yogurt or gel like food substances – 3 oz. or smaller

Three ounces for liquids and soft foods? That’s about the size of a spice jar, so we’re really going to have to get creative here. Since sharp objects are verboten, that means that knives and forks are out, so any foods we pack will have to be finger foods.
We’re considering packing up our Mr. Bento lunch jar (and remembering to leave the spork at home) with goodies such as:

Dried heirloom tomatoes from the Ferry Building farmer’s market

  •  Nuts
  • Yummy sandwich
  • Sliced jicama with fresh lime wedge
  • Cooked rice and grilled skinless chicken
  • Celery and carrot sticks with 3 oz. of hummus
  • Applesauce – 3 oz. of course.

What about you? What do you like to carry on the plane for sustenance during long trips?

Whatever you pack, remember your fellow passengers and don’t pack foods that have a strong odor, so leave the durian and kimchee at home. If you are too busy to pack up a meal, consider ordering a made-to-order, TSA-approved meal from SkyMeals. They’ll meet you at your home, office, or the airport and hand you an insulated tote bag with a healthy meal. One warning, though – they are really expensive.

Snacks, Baked Goodies and Other Plane Fare from The Kitchn

• Recipe: Sweet and Salty Cinnamon Almonds
• Recipe Review: Dried Fig and Nut Bars
• Recipe: Mozzacado Sandwich
• Recipe: DIY Graham Crackers
• Weekend Sandwich Recipe: Basil, Goat Cheese, and Artichoke Hearts


Try to thinking about buying storable food

2 Oct

There are infinite reasons on why there would be shortage of food, but most people do not believe those reasons are possible. Reality is that these reasons are more than possible, almost predictable. If you are not prepared for what is coming, I suggest you think about storing food, and being prepared for the worst. Storing food can make a difference for you and your family. It would keep you immune to a food shortage. The more food is kept the more time it lasts. I suggest you go out there and buy canned food or food in boxes, bottled water and there are companies out there who sell some pre-made food, especially designed for storage.

If you do not save anything to eat already you may want to start thinking about buying storable food now that times are not so bad. Storing food is like putting money in a safe. In times of an emergency and food shortage, food will become one of the most valuable possessions you have, if not the only. If you want to store food all you need to do is go to your local grocery store and buy canned food and bottled water. Dry foods are also good for storage, most of the time they come in boxes or some kind of plastic container. There are companies out there making storable food now. Look them up online they offer very good quality products especially designed to store.

Make sure you look at the expiration dates and make sure they last long enough. Storing food can become your reliable source of food when food is not available. Storing food does not cost much and it would help you immensely if you do not have money to buy anything to eat or produce is scarce and cannot be bought. Storing food could save you and your family’s life in a time of need. With the economic collapse and dollar devaluation, now is the most important time to stock up on items to eat, you can also take advantage of our business opportunity to make an extra income as well as benefit from home business tax deductions.Being able to obtain produce all the time is what blocks us from realizing that maybe food might become scarce one day.

With this things stored you won’t have to worry about what to eat when it is scarce.Food and water are things we need to survive on day by day. If a day comes upon us were these elements would not be available it would be chaos. It is better being prepared and have food stored for when needed than having to pay the consequences for not having it. Storing food would only take you a bit of time, space and money but in the end this effort would all be worth it.

Conventionally produced food

29 Sep

You might not be able to afford a regular diet of organic foods. If so, try picking and choosing your organic purchases. A study by the Environmental Working Group of 43 fruits and vegetables shows that you can reduce your pesticide exposure from produce by up to 90 percent by avoiding the twelve most contaminated fruits and vegetables and eating the least contaminated instead. Will your purchases make a difference? Yes. The reason organic foods are now the fastest-growing sector of the food industry is that consumers have shown that they want it.

There is no other way to promote this concept than by buying it and encouraging others to do the same.Are organic foods always the best choice? Are organic foods safer for us to eat? Yes. Unlike conventionally produced food, you to no synthetic pesticides or growth hormones. Many of these substances have been proven to cause cancer, birth defects and damage to the nervous and reproductive systems in animal studies (although at higher levels than commonly found in food). What has not been studied yet is whether or not exposure to low levels of these substances may also have adverse health effects. In the absence of this information, the best course of action is not to expose yourself to chemicals designed and proven to kill other life forms.

If something happened and you were not able to get anything to eat from the store how would you feed yourself and your family? Well the only answer to that question is to have food reserves. Stocking up on food is putting aside food that is made to be stored for when times are hard and food is not available or money does not buy. These things may not seem possible to you but they are.

This is especially true for children, as their developing body systems put them at much greater risk of harm than adults. Are organic foods worth the extra money? Yes, in the sense that you really do get extra value in the form of safer food that is better for the environment. No. Conventional food that is grown close to you may be a better choice than organic foods grown 1,000 miles away. Why? Because transporting food a short distance causes much less global warming pollution. That local farm is also preserving open space in your area and contributing to your local economy.