When we last checked in with Stephanie Berghoff, she was cooking up a storm.
Her new business, The Home Cook, was heating up. A mom with young children, and a passion for delicious food, she was cooking healthful, fresh meals in a Weston church 4 days a week. She and an assistant then delivered the entrees and sides on Mondays and Wednesdays, direct to customers’ homes.
Clients — working couples who want home-cooked meals for their families; stay-at-home parents with little time to cook; frequent travelers, and people with family emergencies — raved about Stephanie’s dinners. And the ease of delivery.
Three years later, The Home Cook sizzles. She’s taken over the former NewBrook Kitchen & Artisan Market on Saugatuck Avenue. She reconfigured the interior as a commissary space, including a walk-in cooler.
Berghoff now employs 6 people in the kitchen, 6 “packers,” and 14 delivery people. Every Monday and Wednesday, they head out with “Home Cook”-ed meals, as far away as Pelham, New York.
Meals arrive chilled; there are no “kits.” No cooking is required; re-heating instructions are included. There’s no subscription either. Some people order regularly, even weekly. Some order less often, even just once in a while.
Berghoff happily servesthem all.
The menu has expanded to several protein offerings a week, and a dozen or so side dishes. Portions range from 1 to 4 people.
Recent entrees included pan-seared mahi mahi fish tacos, red wine and garlic braised short ribs, chicken piccata, Jamaican jerk chicken skewers, ginger lime grilled chicken, summer beef stew, spinach artichoke lasagna, miso glazed cods, and kids’ meals.
Berghoff offers different menus each week. “I don’t want to get bored,” Berghoff says. “I don’t want my customers to get bored either.”
Her personal favorites: sesame noodles and Mongolian steak.
The Home Cook has cooked up more ideas. A “provision shop” provides pick-up options like margarita mixes, low-fat tuna and chicken salads, honey mustard, truffle honey, BBQ seasoning rub, carrot ginger dressing and pesto feta dip — plus insulated totes.
Berghoff caters parties, too.
As a home delivery service, she has been whacked by rising gas prices. Food costs are increasing too.
But customers continue to be willing — even happy — to pay for the convenience of a home-cooked meal.
Particularly one prepared and delivered by The Home Cook.
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