Monday, August 2, 2010

Personal Chefs - Staying In, is the New Going Out

If anything good has come from the economic downturn we have all been living through, it is the rediscovery of our homes as the source of nourishment—both edible and emotional.

No longer are people thoughtlessly eating out each night when cooking at home and eating as a family is not only less expensive, but also deeply rewarding on several levels.

In fact, according to The NPD Group’s CREST®, which continually tracks consumer usage of commercial and noncommercial foodservice outlets, visits to U.S. restaurants declined by 3% for
the year ending May 2010 compared to a year ago. Consumer spending at restaurants declined by 1%—the first decline in dollars NPD has reported since it began tracking the foodservice industry in 1976.

The actual number of restaurants in the United States, both full service and quick service, declined by more than 5,200. The fact that more people are eating at home more often is a significant shift in the way Americans are making their food choices today.

Game nights at home have reappeared, movie nights abound and family projects are resurfacing as a source of maintaining the family household and supplying a family experience that comes with tangible results.

Individuals and families are discovering that their homes are no longer merely places to sleep and do laundry before dashing off elsewhere for food and entertainment. It is sad that many people lost their homes as a result of the economic turmoil this country has been struggling with for several years now. The fortunate homeowners who are still in their homes are actually appreciating them more than ever.

How does a personal-chef service fit into this new paradigm?
I talk to potential clients who have spent years eating out and are now interested in spending less, but are not willing to sacrifice health or taste as a result. Many of them actually indicate an interest in learning how to prepare healthy meals for themselves on occasion and are pleased to hear that a personal chef can offer assistance for an individual or even for a “family cooking-class dinner party.”
Other potential clients indicate they would like to obtain information about healthy eating to share with a spouse or their children—enter the personal chef once again. Healthy-eating information and tips are shared and coaching is available for a reasonable fee.

The potential clients who would like advice on how to take their kitchens GREEN and ultimately their households more GREEN are pleased to learn that personal chefs are not only terrific cooks, we are also teachers and advisers who are happy to teach and share for a reasonable fee.   The kitchen counter to the left is made out of recycled glass and concrete.

Teaching clients how to use a personal chef effectively and efficiently is no longer the only advising they do.

Personal chefs can show clients how to save time and money and reduce stress by using a personal chef, but they can go a step further in several different directions for individuals who want to learn how to use their kitchens as the heart of the home to feed themselves and their families, teach healthy choices, teach skills so their children start off being able to take care of themselves in the kitchen, and give loved ones the opportunity to cook together and enjoy doing so. A personal chef can be not only the source of delicious healthy meals, but can also be the teacher/mentor who can make healthy cooking and eating possible for the inexperienced and untrained.

(This kitchen uses herbs as a window treatment.  They keep the home cool, bring vibrancy that only plants can bring and offer on demand herbs that are cut just when you need them.)

If you are interested in learning more about personal chefs in the area, I have some great referrals.  Give me a call and I will hook you up!

Provided by Donna Antonucci
Prudential Castle Point Realty

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