Life, Submit Guest Post

5 Tips for Maintaining Consistent Food Quality in Your Restaurant

The best restaurant dishes not only stand out because of their ability to tickle one’s taste buds; to be considered perfect, they need to taste and look the same no matter how many are served anytime and anywhere.

If you own a restaurant, maintaining food quality should, therefore, be one of your main thrusts. It is something that all your employees from the back-of-house and front-of-house have to prioritize.

Customers that frequent your restaurant should never be able to tell that different chefs are creating their favorite dishes. When they order their favorite menu items, they expect it to taste and look the same as the last time they had it regardless of who cooked it.

This consistency in food quality plays a crucial role in the success of your business. When your customers’ expectations are fulfilled every time, you can expect them to come back. Additionally, they will spread the word about your excellent food and bring other people to dine at your restaurant.

Both of these will result in free, effective marketing and, of course, increased sales and profits.

Serving Customers Perfect Dishes All the Time

Many restaurants find maintaining consistent food quality a tall order. However, this is something that can be easily done if you follow the tips below:

1.     Invest in technology

Having the required ingredients at the right amounts at all times is the first step to maintaining food quality consistency. You can ensure you will never run out of fresh food supplies when you have a restaurant point of sale (POS) software.

A POS system is a must-have for restaurants today since it helps owners, and managers stay on top of various processes efficiently. One of its best features, which will affect food quality, is inventory management.

With this software, you will get alerts when your supplies are running low. You can then restock your stores before they are empty. You can even program your system to order the ingredients that need to be replenished automatically.

 When your chefs have access to the right, good-quality ingredients all the time, they won’t have any difficulties recreating the same dishes over and over again. The food will always be consistent regardless of the day and time customers order them. As a result, your diners will leave your restaurants completely satisfied all the time.

2.     Avoid or minimize complicated menu items

Unique dishes, the ones that customers can only get in your restaurant, are usually great for any F&B business. They help your establishment stand out, which is great for traffic. You can also put a premium on them without any worries about your competition.

Allowing your chefs to come up with such masterpieces is a great way to encourage their creativity and keep them motivated as well.

However, you also need to keep your menu in check. One-of-a-kind dishes often require expensive ingredients that can be hard to find. As such, there is a chance you may lose more money on them.

Additionally, these dishes may be difficult to replicate. Because of this, consistency may become an issue.

To help maintain food quality consistency, ensure that the majority of your menu items are not too difficult and complicated to cook. If you want to feature elaborate dishes, choose only one or two.

3.     Implement a recipe management system

Following a standard recipe is another integral part of consistently serving good food. Whether you have several chefs or only one, make sure anyone who is cooking is following the established steps in preparing each dish.

Input all the recipes digitally and install tablets or touch screen monitors in the kitchen. Another option would be to print them out and compile them in a folder. Whichever technique you go with, you will ensure your chefs will see and follow the right recipes.

Aside from the list of ingredients and measurements, the electronic or printed recipes should also contain other vital details. These can include instructions for prepping (cutting, chopping, etc.), cooking times and temperatures, the recipe yield, serving size, and required equipment and utensils. It can also have details about where to order the necessary supplies.

With all these details on hand, you will ensure all chefs will successfully replicate each recipe, every single time. They won’t have any reason to not do so even if their memory fails them.

4.     Ensure all chefs, sous chefs, and kitchen helpers undergo proper training

All employees who will be involved in preparing and cooking food in your restaurant should be sufficiently trained before they start working. Chefs, sous chefs, or cooks, in particular, have to know how to replicate dishes from start to end.

Make use of these training courses to drill the importance of strictly following the standard recipes. Everyone who will have a hand in prepping the food should be taught never to change the way dishes are prepared.

Whenever new dishes are introduced, make sure all chefs and cooks are fully trained in duplicating them as well.

5.     Encourage open communication

Lastly, communication between the kitchen staff and service personnel is crucial in maintaining food quality consistency in your restaurant.

 Having daily reviews or taste panels before service is an excellent way to inform and educate the service staff about your menu. Your kitchen staff can also provide feedback about the dishes the chefs will find useful.

These daily meetings will also improve your servers’ ability to correctly describe and recommend dishes to first-time customers. When the waitstaff provides the right information to guests, the diners will know what to expect and are less likely to be disappointed with their orders.

 Consistency is a crucial element that can make or break your restaurant. As such, make it a priority not only in customer service and ambiance but more importantly, in the quality of all the dishes you serve.

AUTHOR BIO

Ahmad Alzaini is the co-founder and CEO of Foodics, a fast-growing food tech startup. A businessman by nature, Alzaini is an app aficionado, developing businesses in Saudi Arabia within several industries. Today, Foodics has extended to new markets across the MENA region, processing over 1 billion transactions, and offering the latest technology in POS and restaurant management.

 

 

Life, Submit Guest Post

Want to Be Careful of Your Health? Be Careful of Your Mattress!

You don’t often see people talking about mattress and health at the same time, but that’s not a good thing be because your mattress is indeed one of the most important factors influencing your overall health.

A bad mattress means a poor quality of sleep, and a poor quality of sleep translates to your inability in exercising and a host of other issues that directly or indirectly affect your health.

If you wake up tired or feeling pain in your back or body, chances are something’s wrong with your mattress.

Let’s understand some of the common ways in which your mattress can and may be affecting your health.

Stress

Studies have proven that a good night’s sleep can do wonders for your stress. But a good night’s sleep usually doesn’t come from a bad or poor mattress.

Unfortunately, when a mattress is in use for 8 years or longer it may no longer able to offer a very good quality of sleep, which may directly mean trouble with getting your stress levels under control.

Allergies

Do you know 20 million Americans end up with some kind of allergy every year? And out of all the reasons you can imagine for it, a poor, old mattress tends to be one of the most common reasons.

Old mattresses tend to attract millions of tiny dust mites that are often waiting to attack you when you sleep on them, making you vulnerable to a huge variety of allergies.

Some experts do recommend regular cleaning of your mattress, but even that might not help much if your mattress has become too old.

If that does sound like the case with you and you have decided to buy a new mattress, you may also want to buy a mattress protector to prevent your mattress from becoming home to allergy-causing dust mites for a longer period of time.

Back Pain

Sleeping on a poor mattress is one of the most common causes of back pain. But when we say a poor mattress, we don’t just mean a very old mattress, but also the wrong type of mattress even if it’s new.

An ultra-plush mattress, for one, is believed to be terrible for your back and may lead to severe back pain issues if you sleep on it for a long period of time.

Testing the mattress by sleeping on it before buying it is always a good idea, so that you can be sure of what kind of sleep quality it will offer.

Tiredness

As we mentioned at the start of this post, a poor mattress can make you feel tired even after you sleep for 8 hours or more every night. In order to prevent this from happening, you must consider replacing your old mattress as old mattresses often offer a poor quality of sleep which leads to the feeling of tiredness and unrest.

Body Aches

It’s also not uncommon for old mattresses to cause issues like body aches, especially if you find lumps forming on them. The lumps are usually a sign of wear and tear that every mattress goes through when it gets too old.

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5 Types of Suit Any Man Should Have

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When it comes to choosing the right suit for the right occasion it makes life a lot easier if your wardrobe already contains the essential staple suits which every man should own during his lifetime.

There are some key life situations requiring different suits, which are virtually guaranteed to happen from going to work, going on dates, formal occasions and then there are the changes in the season with suits for summer and winter.

To make it easier, we turned to the expert team of Dobell.co.uk and they gave us a list of five types of suit which are a complete must have for every man’s wardrobe, so here is their quick run-down:

  1. The formal evening suit

While you may not be swimming in invitations to black tie events, there will undoubtedly be occasions in your life where a formal evening suit is required. From a work’s do, a wedding, or a posh party – when you want to be looking your best having your own evening dinner suit is by far the best option.

Of course, you could always rent one as and when you need it but then you can’t guarantee the perfect fit and you know it’s been worn by many men before you which can take the edge off of feeling special when you dress up for the night.

Having a tailor-made dress suit is the ultimate choice for any man, even if you only wear it once a year, you will know that when you do you will look a million dollars and it will pay for itself in no time.

  1. A dark navy two-buttoned suit

This is the everyday suit which you can wear time and time again. It’s formal enough to wear for interviews, or for formal occasions, but easy enough to wear that it can become your daily work attire.

Look for one that’s made out of a quality durable fabric so that it will last all year round and the right material will give you more flexibility to wear the jacket and trousers separately if you wish to.

You can jazz it up with the tie and shirt that you wear underneath, going for white and plain for a formal look, to bright colours and jazzy patterns for a day when you want to be more creative.

  1. A mid-grey two-button suit

Clearly you can’t wear the staple navy suit all the time so the other vital choice is a grey version of the same suit. That way you can alternate between the two colours. You might even want to get a couple for the different seasons – light grey for summer and charcoal grey for winter.

Grey works perfectly as a formal suit for everyday wear as long as you again look for a durable, good quality fabric which will endure being worn regularly and will still look good every time you pick it up from the dry cleaners.

Again, with a grey suit you can keep it traditional and formal with white shirt and plain tie, or you can jazz it up to make it stand out from the crowd with a more unusual or patterned shirt and tie option.

  1. A black double-breasted suit

This type of suit is perfect for occasions when you want to look sharper than your average day at the office, but not quite in tux mode. It’s perfect for going out on a date or special night out, or attending a friend’s wedding, for example.

It can be used for work as well, if both of your regular suits happen to be at the cleaners, or if you are going for that career review and want to look the part for the next level up in your career.

Don’t go for a really long jacket as it will look too much like a dinner suit, but opt for good quality sharp fabric, and with this one you can go for a slight sheen as it will work well on the dark colour.

  1. A light linen suit

When the warmer weather hits the last thing you want to be wearing all day is a heavy dark suit but if your work demands formal attire then you will need a light summer suit to stay cool but smart.

Linen is a great choice although it can crease easily so look for a blend or an ultra-light woven fabric for your summer suit. Summer suits tend to come in paler colours and are constructed more loosely to allow for easier movement and less constriction.

When it comes to having the right suits, if you have these five to hand in your wardrobe you can’t go far wrong, and no matter what the occasion you can rest assured that you can lay your hands on the perfect attire to stay looking sharp.

Christian, Personal, Thoughts, Uncategorized

When the going gets tough…

Life is not all about marshmallows and lollipops – sometimes you have to deal with bitter gourd too. It’s not all sweet, joyful, and happy moments. There comes a time when the world seems to have turned its back on you. Sometimes the going gets tough.

They say tough times are blessings in disguise. After all, you can only appreciate the better times more if you have gone through rough tides.

But have you ever been in the point of your life when nothing seems to make sense anymore? When everything seems to be going the other way?

Life sometimes can be full of surprises. It can catch us off guard. One time you’re happy, the other time you’re sad. Sounds straight from a song but how real are the words. Sometimes I’m afraid to enjoy too much as I could almost imagine what’s going to happen next. It’s as if for every joy I experience, there is an equivalent tough time.

Let me share to you one secret. How do I deal with the tough times? How do I get through? Philippians 4:13. That’s my secret weapon. I will leave it as that as I want you to get your Bible and read it for yourself. It got me through a lot of rough tides while I sail through life. I hope it does wonders to you too.

Happy Friday my loves 🙂

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How To Help Your Kids Get Along (Guest Post)

aaaI have heard a lot of people saying to each other my kids fight with each other, please help with that. So I want to give a few tips to you at least to manage siblings’ rivalry. People living in the same house together day in and day out they are going to have arguments. They are not always going to get along. So there is no possibility way to eliminate this completely. But there are some things you can do to at least minimize or make it more manageable.

  1. BE THE MODEL OF DESIRED BEHAVIOUR

The first thing you can do is to monitor yourself right. Kids are watching everything. And they learn best from models. So how are you modeling conflicts? If every time you and your partner have a disagreement it turns into screaming match, then it is no surprise it is what your kids do when they are in conflict. So you want to teach them how do you have an appropriate conversation with someone when you are feeling frustrated with them, when you are feeling angry with them. So your kids also learn those skills. This is a skill set; how do manage anger, frustrated feelings. Not all adults have that mastered yet either. But really monitor yourself. If you need to a have a screaming match with your partner, it is better to completely leave the room. Go out in the porch or do whatever you have to so that they do not see your fighting but they see you doing something else. They need to see positive ways in which how to deal with conflicts.

  1. MAKE TIME FOR ONE ON ONE EXPERIENCES WITH EACH CHILD

The next reason why most siblings fight is because of jealousy. And one way to kind of help curb that is to make sure that you are giving each child their own independent time with you. This can be hard if have got several kids, but what you can try to do is plan one day a month, an afternoon with just one on one time with one of the children. You can take them on shopping. Keep looking for discount coupons and promos it will enable you to take your every kid out for shopping.  You can even have an overnight trip with each of your children, one at a time. And that is a great way to just keep the focus on them, remind them why they are special to you why they are important to you, without having anyone else so that they have to fight for your attention. It is usually an attention thing that is why children are doing it. So if you can help carve that out; even if just 10 minutes a day you spend dedicated time with one child individually, this is really going to help.

  1. GIVE YOUR CHILDREN A CHANCE TO RESOLVE THEIR OWN CONFLICTS

Do not always jump in. Children need to learn skills for dealing with conflicts. And it is tempting every time you hear you know trouble brewing in the other room. To turn in there and break it up, give them trouble and scold them for it, is not what you need to do. They need to navigate this on their own. So if kids are having arguments, often it is about what show they are going to watch on television, and if you hear it, give it a few minutes. Just see if they could resolve it. If they could not, enter the room because it is not helpful to holler from other rooms. Get in the room and say you need to solve this problem. And just leave the room. So this makes them realize that the mother knows and she has given us warning that if you can’t resolve it she will intervene. But give them the opportunity to try again. If the squabbling continues though, then just come in and give time out. And the television would go off. They would go their separate directions for an increment of time. For older kids it might be five minutes or so. If they are little, they just kind of separate for one minute or two and then they can reconvene. It is great if you distract them before conflict arises, but you can’t always be watching every little move they make.

  1. NO NEGATIVE PUT DOWN RULE IN YOUR HOUSE

A little bonus tip that I want to give is that is in a house talking meanly, telling people to shut up or I hate you are the things that should simply be not allowed. There should be zero tolerance policy in the house for mean or negative out downs. This kind of language should not be acceptable. To express your anger you can say I am angry with you but you can’t say you are stupid or you are dumb or anything that is a negative insult to the other person. So have a no negative put down rule in your house and make sure you consequence it when it happens. If you deal your kids harshly on their mistakes they will start lying to you.

By following all above points, you really see your kids grow up to be respectful family members. I hope that will help.

Author Bio:

Abigail Kent is an enthusiastic blogger, who loves to write on Trending topics related to lifestyle, traveling and money saving tips. She’s currently associated with Discount Codez, an online coupon code directory offering latest and updated deals, promo’s and vouchers. Follow her at Twitter

Thoughts

Unsolicited Blog Analysis – Link Exchange?

Hi there my loves!

I don’t deny that this blog is nothing compared to other top ranking blogs that you will find on the internet. I am in no competition with other blogs. I have set up this blog to express my thoughts and share my experiences with you.

Once in a while I do get emails from other websites and blogs asking if I can do some product review and post an article or infographic for them. I don’t mind doing these as I’d love to share my space to other websites with content I deemed good enough to share.

Yesterday though I received a link exchange request from some blog from NYC. I don’t do link exchange because it is against the Google guidelines of good SEO practices. So I have informed the person about this and guess what?

He replied that my blog has lower traffic and ranking compared to his website! What the heck? If that’s the case, why did you contact me? I would hurt your ranking even more if you have better ranking than mine! So why contact me and give me that unsolicited blog analysis? And stop doing black hat techniques!

I don’t care if my traffic is not as high as yours. I am not a commercial blog. This is a personal blog which I use as an avenue to share my thoughts.

Good luck on your site and hopefully one day you will be on the top with all your black hat antics!

 

Kids, Life, Mommy

Mom in Progress – Struggling but Getting There

Help Me!!! Okay, I’m exaggerating but I didn’t know having a baby and full time work can be so exhausting! Hello! I don’t even know what sleep and rest mean anymore.

My little Lemon is 8 days shy of being 9 months old. She’s an angel but a total attention seeker. No amount of toys can make her sit still. Heck, she doesn’t even want to watch Youtube videos or television for that matter unlike other kids I know who are glued to their screens all the time. She doesn’t want any of these nonsense. She wants me! She wants my attention.

So what constitutes my day this past months? Let me tell you. I go to sleep at around 11pm or 12 midnight. I have to finish 8 hours of work a day and because I usually start late, obviously I’d end up late as well.

I wake up at around 2 am to feed my baby. If I am lucky, she stays asleep throughout the feeding but if not, she’ll start playing thinking that it’s already morning. And this happens while the light is out. I’ve been told to turn off the light so the baby knows if its night time. Apparently, this doesn’t work really well with us. Even if it’s dark, my little Lemon will find a way to play. And by play I mean babble words in a way that even the people in the next room will hear.

So let’s assume I was lucky and she slept throughout the feeding, I go back to sleep and wake up at 4am to feed her again. Yes, I do this every 2 hours. You can tell by the muscles on her arms and legs 🙂 By this time, whether I’m lucky or not, she’ll wake up as this is her usual waking up time.

So a little playing here and there, feeding in between, and she’ll get back to sleep at around 6am. I’d sleep too and she’ll wake up at 7 am. I know, I’m very detailed with the time as she has a sleeping routine.

At 7am, we both wake up. I put her in her playpen and prepare food for the day. I usually cook rice, chicken, carrots, and squash. I make a porridge. I used to process her food in the blender so she can eat them easily but lately, she doesn’t want very soft and watery food anymore. She wants her solid. And she can eat solid without a problem too. At 8 months old, she has 9 teeth!

So she has her breakfast and playtime. I am finally able to eat my breakfast at around 9am. By 10, she’ll feed again and bath time after. Is it just me or do you also struggle in giving baths to little ones? I can’t give my little Lemon a bath by myself. I need a hand to do it right.

She’ll have a nap after bath time and wake up at 12 to feed again. Playtime comes next. Then feed again at 3pm. I’d let her have an early dinner at 5pm.

I’d prepare her for bed at 7pm and if things are going well, she’d be asleep at 8:30 pm. If not, she’ll be asleep after I work at 11pm.

In between all the feeding and playtime are clothes and nappy changes.

By the time I hit the bed, I almost can’t get up anymore. It’s a struggle to get up and feed her at 2am.

The cycle continues everyday.

Until now, I’m amazed how I have survived 8 months of this set up. But with all my struggles, I wonder if other moms are experiencing these? When I look at Facebook posts of my friends who are mommies to infants too, they seem to have kept everything in control. Am I doing something wrong or am I just really a mom in progress? After all, it feels everything is new to me given that the last time I had an infant was 15 years ago!

And just in case we are not friends on Facebook, here is what she looks like now:

Image may contain: 1 person, shoes

I wrote this post in a hurry because I have a screaming baby in front of me! I just want to give everyone a quick update of the reason why I haven’t been posting lately 🙂

Food Trip, Life, Mommy, Submit Guest Post, Women

4 Bread-Baking Secrets on the Road to Bread Perfection

 

You’re preparing for your child to be born, and you’re craving something delicious. Bread is on your mind day and night, and if food is on your mind, you can start baking the perfect loaf of bread today. But I am not going to give you a recipe to follow.

Nope.

I’m going to do something even better: help you fix all of those baking errors that you’re making. You’ll be able to use a lot of these secrets to make fruit cakes, cookies, pastries or any other type of cooking when baking is involved.

Bread Baking Secret #1: Warm Butter

You follow a recipe exactly, and what happens? Your bread turns out horrible. I have had this happen countless times, and the problem was something so simple that I am almost embarrassed to even mention it: butter.

I added the butter into the mix.

But I didn’t let the butter warm up first. The recipe never really said what to do with the butter, so I left it out for a minute or two before adding it into my dough.

Big mistake.

Room temperature ingredients trap the air through emulsion and this air will expand and allow the bread to get nice and fluffy. If your bread hasn’t been getting the fluff you want, this may be why.

Bread Baking Secret #2: Knead on an Oiled Surface

This corrective technique seems so obvious, but it’s a technique most people don’t even think about. If your bread and dough is just dry, you’ll want to knead it on an oiled surface. If you knead your dough on a floured surface, you’re going to add to the dryness of the bread.

And this should be evident during your last dough rise.

If you just have dough that’s always too dry, this trick will help – a lot.

Bread Baking Secret #3: Temperatures Aren’t What They Seem

I started to notice that my bread never came out just right after a few recipe failures, but it wasn’t just bread. A lot of baked goods didn’t come out right. I knew I followed the recipes exactly, so the next logical step was to look at my main equipment.

The utensils have little to do with the problem. When I was using a new bread maker, the problem went away, too. But any time I put my dough into the oven, or any baked good for that matter, instant problems.

The problem?

My oven. The temperature wasn’t right. I put it on 350 degrees, but the calibration was off, and the oven’s temperature was off. I used a separate oven thermometer, and the oven was off by 25 degrees

You can calibrate some ovens, but I just used the thermometer to tell the difference in temperature and I was back to the grind making delicious bread once again.

If your oven is off, and a lot of them are, it’s going to be problematic.

Another mistake I learned from my grandmother, and it’s so simple, too: stop opening the oven door. You let a lot of the hot air escape the oven when you open the door, which causes the bread to bake improperly and causes the oven to work in overdrive.

Bread Baking Secret #4: Use a Digital Scale

Baking with confidence requires you to use a digital scale. The best bakers in the world know that even a slight variation in an ingredient’s quantity can lead to a major difference in the chemical reaction in the bread.

And if you just “eye” your ingredients, it’s no wonder that they never come out right.

You need to measure your ingredients using a scale. And I am sorry, but you need to also measure in grams. Trust me, it’s so much easier and it makes an immediate impact on your baking.

Scales are the difference between consistency and chaos.

If you measure all of your ingredients by weight, you’ll be able to make sure that the same recipe tastes the same the next time you follow it.

Bread making is an art, and it’s all a matter of taste. Something I learned on my travels to Italy is that the way Italians make bread is a lot different than the way Americans make bread. The sweetness isn’t part of the Italian bread making ritual. Not at all.

And the taste is much earthier in Italy than it is in the U.S.

But it’s all a matter of taste. Experiment, add ingredients and find the bread taste that makes your mouth water.

 

Kids, Love, Mommy, Parenting, Personal

Our Little Angel At 12 Weeks

Our little bubba is now 12 weeks and 3 days old. How fast time flies! We have to wait until the 20th week to know the gender but we are praying it will be a baby girl. Everyone we know hopes for a baby girl too. I can never be more excited.

Last time we went for my prenatal checkup, my OB tried to listen to the baby’s heartbeat using the doppler but we can’t hear it. She said it was probably too early to detect the heartbeat so she did a quick pelvic ultrasound just to make sure that the baby is okay and is alive. The baby was sleeping so we can’t really see any movement. My OB tried to prod my abdomen gently and the baby moved a little. What a relief to find out it’s okay.

Week-11-Baby-Size-Comparison

According to Babycenter.com, at this age, the baby is already the size of a lime. Great improvement. Last week, it was just the size of a brussel sprout. It weighs about half an ounce and measures around a little over 2 inches. It is looking more human every week. It got reflexes now. The eyes have moved from the sides to the front of the head. The ears are now in place as well.

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As for me, I am beginning to feel morning sickness. I know it’s late since I am already about to start my second trimester. I haven’t had any morning sickness during my first trimester so I must be a late bloomer! Heartburn has become more and more intense now. And talk about frequent trip to the bathroom especially early in the morning!

I have no particular craving for food but I want cold drinks always. It’s hard to pin this down to pregnancy since it is full Summer here so I am thinking I will still crave for cold drinks even if I am not pregnant.

My tummy is getting bigger now. I am running out of clothes that fit me.

My family has been nothing but very supportive and helpful at this stage. I thank the Lord for the gift of family to help me get through this exciting but scary journey.