Wild Nights! at Kitchen

19 Feb

Kitchen officially opened last week, but it already feels like a month has gone by. Despite the chaos of the first few days, Kitchen is running more and more smoothly, with the two Miller brothers cooking a storm of tasty food (paced by occasional whistling), Joanna’s fantastic pot pie and salad making skills – but really she can make almost everything on the menu, Daniel’s high-tech expertise, and Nate’s ability to be everywhere at the same time, from wooing customers to washing dishes and chopping veggies.

But today was by far one of the more hectic days: the power kept going out. We’d be in the middle of putting the food in bags, Jordan would be sautéing broccoli and zucchini and bam, the Kitchen would go dark. After a half hour of worrying that we would have to work by candle-light, the light returned, and we were able to get back on track with our dozens of orders flowing from the printer. We had Zach Saltman helping out with delivery and the dishes and tasting our food, keeping the good-humor alive with his encouraging comments, as well as Joey our best biker and friendliest delivery man, geared up and set to efficiently deliver the next order. What a night of running around in circles, at least nothing was dropped or burned, and despite a few mishaps because of our technical issues with electricity, we were able to make it through the night, rather successfully. As I plated the dishes, rolled some biscuits and tried to stay out of the way – which is difficult in the small space, Nate ran back and forth calling orders, fetching ingredients while speaking with customers on the phone, as Daniel with incredible patience and rapidity cleaned pan after pan. The most popular dishes this evening were the meat loaf with a delicious thick sauce, the spaghetti and meatballs which has quickly become a favorite, and of course the tender Brick Chicken. The biscuits were heart-shaped as we could not find the round cookie-cutter. The couscous, stirred with butternut squash and spinach, was a great success as well. Word is on the street that next week’s soup will be butternut squash, so keep your eyes and stomachs alert for the specials of Kitchen’s 2nd week open.

The night ended with Jordan baking walnut-banana muffins for the TriDelt brunch on Sunday morning. To quote Matt Miller, Jordan’s brother, they taste like “banana bread had sex with a muffin.” I tried one and he’s quite correct. They aren’t too sweet, they almost taste like cream, and the crunch of the walnuts, along with the surprising pieces of soft banana, is the ideal combination.

It seems like the Kitchen Operation is running on smoother wheels: the Miller brothers communicate with just a look in perfect symbiosis (yes, I asked them about it), Nate complains less about dishes (at least for tonight), and Daniel has become an expert at biscuit-baking. Our terrific bikers enjoyed a late-night meal of mac and cheese, mashed potatoes and meat loaf.

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