The word “catering” often conjures images of bowties, pigs in blankets or gaudy silver chafing dishes. Seeking to break out of that mold, chef Bob Spiegel and designer TJ Girard joined forces to create Pinch Food Design, an innovative approach to catering focused on creative recipes served with a one-of-a-kind presentation. Combining their respective skills, Spiegel and Girard have found a way to take prepared foods from a mundane-but-necessary garnish to a main event.
In 2011 Spiegel let us in on the process of creating his signature spaghetti and meatball rolls, and now, the two are spilling more secrets in their new cookbook “Inspired Bites.” More than just a collection of recipes, “Inspired Bites” uses the same creative coupling behind Pinch Food Design to help anyone turn the average cocktail party into a memorable affair.
Unlike some Nouveau American cookbooks, which often have such sophisticated recipes that they threaten to intimidate the average home chef, “Inspired Bites” makes the most simple hors d’oeuvre vastly more interesting by offering unexpected ideas for preparation and presentation. Buffalo chicken wings, for example, become a stylish deconstructed tower of ingredients, and the watermelon ice pop gets a dash of whimsy by being served on a bamboo stick hanging from a branch or dowel. Overall, “Inspired Bites” shows that food can be elegantly played with, and that entertaining can be a creative joy.
“Inspired Bites” is available now on Amazon for $26.
Images courtesy of In House Books and by Cool Hunting