Most Common Waiter Mistakes
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Let's avoid the word 'guys' and not point out that we're eating alone
While some of us may enjoy eating alone at a restaurant, nothing is more annoying than a reminder that it's an anomaly.
Eric Weiss, president and founder of Service Arts, spoke to Food Arts about six phrases that should never be uttered in a restaurant or hotel, and some of them are surprisingly common.
The first? "How are you guys tonight?" "Just omit the word 'guys.' What would YOU like tonight?" Food Arts writes.
Other questions involve "Are you still working on that?" which makes eating sound more like a chore, as well as "How are those scallops treating you?" which makes the dish seem almost human.
Even worse is, perhaps, the question, "Just one tonight?" "If a guest is dining alone, make that person feel good about spending the evening in your establishment," Food Arts writes.
Head on over to Food Arts for two more common mistakes, and how to fix all of these service no-nos. Just don't scold your waiter the next time this happens; you don't want to make them mad.
5 Common Weight Loss Mistakes After 5pm As Per Nutritionist's Viral Video
Weight loss is no easy feat or overnight achievement - it requires lots of hard work and dedication. There are so many myths about weight loss that keep doing the rounds on the internet. One commonly heard misconception is that consuming carbohydrates in the evening is detrimental to weight loss. Expert nutritionist Rachel Paul, also known as @collegenutritionist on Instagram, regularly shares simple weight loss tricks to lose weight the smart way. She took to the platform to debunk myths and explain some actual common weight loss mistakes that people do after 5pm. The video has received over 445k views and counting. These are popular errors which can be easily avoided with a little bit of attention to our daily diet plan.
Here Are 5 Common Weight Loss Mistakes After 5pm As Per Nutritionist Rachel Paul:
1. Not Eating Enough At Dinner
One of the most common mistakes that people make is to not eat enough for dinner. While it is not recommended to overstuff oneself, it is also not ideal to eat light if you are still hungry. Nutritionist Rachel Paul recommends getting enough of protein, starch and fat in order to keep the stomach full for longer.
2. Not Adding Enough Flavour To Dinner
Flavourful foods and well-spiced meals often induce the feeling of satiety. Thus, it is essential to ensure that the last meal of your day packs enough flavour. "Try different spices, light dressings, salsas, sauerkraut," suggests Paul.
Weight loss: A well-spiced meal can induce the feeling of satiety.
3. Plan Your Desserts
Even the best of us succumb to dessert cravings every now and then. The idea is not to restrict yourself but plan your desserts better. "If you want something sweet after dinner - just plan it in! Tracking is a helpful way to figure out the right portions for you," says Paul. So, take healthy dessert ideas and then include them in your post-dinner diet plan.
4. Not Setting A Bed Time
"Otherwise we can binge Netflix for hours, and get into that state where we're too tired to get up to brush our teeth, but also too tired to just fall asleep on the couch. I call this 'The Bad Trance'," explained Rachel Paul in the caption. Thus, following a strict bedtime every night may actually help restrict your urge to binge on snacks in the latter half of the evening.
Weight loss: Stick to a healthy sleep schedule to avoid bedtime cravings.
5. Not Eating Enough The Next Day
According to Rachel, the idea of bingeing one day and then restricting the diet the next day simply doesn't work. It is better to maintain a consistent eating pattern and follow a healthy diet plan every single day.
What's the Most-Common Mistake Made in the Chopped Kitchen?
Chopped host Ted Allen with Judges: Geoffrey Zakarian, Alex Guarnaschelli and Amanda Freitag as they deliberate over the desserts of Chopped Champion Chefs:Rob Evans and Jun Tanaka, as seen on Food Networks Chopped, Season 14.
Photo by: David Lang ©2011, Television Food Network, G.P.
David Lang, 2011, Television Food Network, G.P.
Week after week, Chopped fans tune in to watch four eager chef competitors take their places in the kitchen for a chance to outcook the chopping block and score the coveted title of Chopped Champion. Not only facing off against each other, the contestants battle baskets full of mystery ingredients like shad roe sacks, black garlic, pig ears and duck hearts — products and produce that are so unusual that some chefs have neither seen nor tasted them before in their career.
Working with such oddball selects surely invites a host of unique problems, including overcooked proteins and underdone grains, but the most-common mistake made among chefs isn't one resulting from obscure ingredients. Instead, it's something that trips up even home cooks as they prepare everyday meals for their families.
Speaking to a crowd at the Borgata Hotel Spa & Casino in Atlantic City, longtime Chopped judge Geoffrey Zakarian said that the most-prominent error in competitors' dishes is seasoning. No stranger to the highs and lows in the Chopped kitchen, he's tasted his share of meals that have proved to be near disasters simply because chefs used too little of two of the most-basic ingredients found in restaurant and home kitchens alike: salt and pepper. "Nobody puts salt and pepper in their food," he said. "Amazing. Shocking."
What cooking conundrums do you struggle with in the kitchen? Tell FN Dish in the comments below.
Not Tasting as You Go
Franziska & Tom Werner / Getty Images
Recipes can have mistakes in them. If you've never used a given recipe before, you should make sure each ingredient, and quantity thereof, passes the common sense test before blindly dumping it in. Humans also make mistakes, and if you misread a recipe, it's better to know about it sooner than later so you can make an adjustment. Mistakes aside, personal preferences can vary, especially when it comes to spiciness and seasoning. Tasting as you go is all about nipping problems in the bud, which is a useful habit for any cook to cultivate.
The 12 Most Common Bread Baking Mistakes to Avoid
You&rsquove finally decided to give baking a loaf of bread a whirl, or you&rsquore trying to up your miche, baguette or sourdough loaf game. Good for you! Here&rsquos expert advice on avoiding the most common errors.
“Traditional, intuitive bread making does not lend itself naturally to a written recipe,” writes Bay Area baker Chad Robertson in his cookbook Tartine Bread.
Judging based on my baking adventures so far, the James Beard Award-winning restaurateur is (no surprise!) quite correct. I recently made a slab pizza which I𠆝 made about half a dozen times before, and for which the recipe recommended a food processor. This time, I used my hands and let the dough rise overnight instead. The resulting pie was the best yet—tender and toothsome in texture, properly bubbled with lots of airy pockets, and a real affinity for all the olive oil I𠆝 slathered in its sheet pan.
But beyond your own intuition, there’s a lot the pros can teach you. I reached out to acclaimed baker Zachary Golper of Brooklyn and Manhattan bakeries Bien Cuit, whose cookbook I keep next to Robertson’s as I try to anticipate common baking pitfalls. When I asked him about errors home bakers make, he cautioned, “That’s a tough question, because in every instance if you’re paying attention [baking] is a learning experience, because you’re becoming a better baker on the other side of it. Success without failure teaches you very little.” It’s a smart, Zen approach, but I managed to wrest a few pitfalls home bakers could avoid from him.
1. Over-flouring wet dough
“Often people are scared of sticky dough, so they keep adding flour,” warns Golper. “They’re afraid to let the magic happen…If people want a good loaf of bread, they’ve gotta get over that.” Some doughs will simply be very moist when they’re ready it’s the way the science of fermentation, time, and heat works.
2. Not using a digital scale
“People push back on scales,” says Golper, but they’re enormously helpful. 𠇊 teaspoon of finely granulated salt is a major difference from a teaspoon of Kosher salt. A teaspoon’s not a teaspoon. Salt is a huge, huge ingredient that if you mis-scale in one direction or the other it can be problematic or not taste good.” I can attest to this one: The day I started making my go-to loaf using a scale I found its lack of saltiness to be immediately fixed.
3. Failing to keep notes
It’s OK to nerd out when it comes to your baking. Keeping notes about the crumb structure—whether it’s too dense or too loose, whether you like the crust, and whether the flavor is right𠅊re all things pro bakers do, and they’ll help you when you make your next loaf.
4. Ignoring the water factor
“People like to talk about ‘the perfect water,’” laughs Golper, adding that “there was this lore for a long time about the great water of this region or that region.” But he admits that two things matter with water: First, if you have potable tap water, leave it out overnight so that any chlorine will evaporate. (It interferes with the ability of dough to ferment, and it doesn’t taste great!) Second, remember that the pH of your water will match the pH of the local bacteria and yeast floating in the air. “One has to understand that local bacteria and yeast will not live in an area where it doesn’t get along with the water,” says Golper. “There’s a symbiotic relationship…. You can’t take your sourdough starter from New York to Iceland and expect the same results. Keep it in the region.” Local water pairs well, unsurprisingly, with local flour, so if you see it, try it. “You’ll have more consistency because you’ll have the same bacteria and same yeast that are in that area,” he says.
5. Always using commercial yeast
Yeast and starters are scary terms for many novice bakers. Let the package yeast from the grocery store be your starting point if it helps you get going, but then consider making your own bread starter. It can be as simple, as in Robertson’s book, as combining flour and water and setting it aside at room temperature for about a day, ing” it periodically with more flour. (In Golper’s book, he tends to use a pinch of commercial instant yeast, too.) So long as you are using unbromated, unbleached flour, it should start to bubble and get lively, and can be the base of a loaf.
6. Doing everything in a standing mixer
Depending on your batch size, making bread by hand is often the best bet, says Golper. He suggested that unless you own a $450, commercial-grade standing mixer, you’re shortening its life by baking small batches of bread in it, even if it comes with a dough hook. Use it 𠇏or making meringue and cake batter and stuff like that,” he suggests. “When you touch the dough you have a very intimate relationship with it. You can learn a lot from your dough.” Also, a machine can 𠇍ry out” your dough, over-oxidizing it, and you’ll end up with a drier loaf.
7. Switching up flours willy-nilly
Thinking of swapping out a recipe’s flour for a different one? Maybe don’t. Flours probably have different protein levels, which affects the bread’s loftiness when it comes out of the oven. White flour tends to be very slightly higher in protein than whole-grain. If you want a lofty loaf of bread but want to incorporate whole grain such as rye, “which is really where you’re winning on the flavor level,” says Golper, use 12 percent or higher protein-level white flour. The issue with whole grain is essentially that its bran will cut through the gluten network of proteins in your bread, so if you add too much, you’ll have a flat loaf. (Some cooks avoid this by soaking whole grains overnight so bran fibers are less sharp.)
8. Too hot, or too cold
𠇊 small mass of fermenting dough will quickly equalize with the ambient room temperature,” Robertson warns in his book. He keeps his bakery between 78 and 82 degrees, but you might not be able to pull this off when your dough is rising. You can tweak it, he writes, by mixing the flour with warmer water—perhaps 90-degree water if your kitchen is below 70 degrees. Your oven, even if it’s turned off, will often be the warmest place in the kitchen, so consider letting the dough rise in there if your kitchen is cold.
9. Being impatient
One tip from this amateur bread baker: If the recipe says -18 hours” for the initial resting stage but the the recipe notes indicates that its developer always bakes it for 18 or more, go for 18. My no-knead loaf was enormously flavorful after 18 hours, but failed to rise properly in the oven when I𠆝 only waited 12 hours during the initial rise.
10. Not letting bread proof completely
“Proofing,” or the final resting of a loaf of bread before it goes into the oven, can be frustrating. That dough probably smells delicious, and you’re ready to see what you’ve made. But let it proof completely. For most loaves, this is when a soft poke with your fingertip leaves a small indentation on the dough, slowly creeps back, and 𠇊lmost doesn’t come back all the way,” says Golper. (If you poke in and the poke mark stays, whoops, you’ve overproofed!)
11. Forgetting to score
Those gorgeous lines you see in the tops of bakery loaves? That’s called scoring, which is essential so the bread can release gas properly while rising in the oven. As Robertson writes, 𠇊n unscored loaf will not rise to its potential and will often burst open along the sides.” The types of scores you use can become signatures, he adds. You can use a sharp knife or a razor to carefully score a square on a round loaf.
12. Taking bread out of the oven too early
There’s a fine line between 𠇋urned” and “perfectly done” bread, and Golper literally named his bakery for this phenomenon. “Bien cuit, pas trop cuit” is French for “well baked, but not overdone,” he writes in his cookbook. By baking your bread till it’s just past golden but not burned, you’re enabling the Maillard reaction, which essentially creates a marvelous new set of flavors in some protein-laden foods cooked at high temperatures. It can make for a bread whose crust is booming with flavor rather than just ho-hum.
If you’ve made it correctly, a well-done loaf will feel light in the hand, “which tells you that the right amount of water has been cooked out,” says Robertson. “When tapped on the bottom, the loaf will feel hollow.”
How lovely is that? And if your first loaf isn’t just what you wanted, keep trying. Environmental factors—the humidity of the day, the yeast in your kitchen, and even the caliber of the water𠅊ll affect what you’re doing, so keep playing around until you strike bread gold.
Five of the Most Common Restaurant Menu Mistakes
Here are five common restaurant menu mistakes to avoid (and if you’re already making them, to fix!)…
1. The menu is too eclectic or too trendy.
While variety is the spice of life, it’s not surprising that putting together a menu comprised of “a little bit of this” and “a little bit of that” ranks among the most common restaurant menu mistakes operators make. Why? Many assume that offering an eclectic selection of dishes will attract more customers. But this menu strategy can often backfire.
The more eclectic the menu, the more difficult it will be for customers to discern what the restaurant “is” and what it is trying to be. Trying to have too broad of an appeal can do more damage than good. What’s more, establishing a niche by becoming known for a particular type of dish or cuisine will prove difficult, if not impossible. The same rings true for super trendy menus. Food trends can come and go very quickly and when a trend goes out of fashion, many customers move on to the next food fad.
2. The menu features too many dishes.
We’ve all been there: sitting at a restaurant with a mammoth menu, attempting to make a decision while our blood sugar levels plummet and we plead with the waiter for just one more minute to decide.
Huge menus lead to customer confusion and a much longer ordering process, contributing to slower table turn and reducing the instances of repeat business.
Operationally, the more menu items you offer, the more extensive your ingredient inventory becomes. While a good inventory management system (hopefully integrated into your restaurant point of sale system) will help to minimize out-of-stocks, the potential for ingredient shortages and menu-item outages increases with the number of dishes on the menu.
So, too, do food production problems that stem not only from these outages, but also from forcing kitchen staff to scramble to prepare smaller quantities of multiple items rather than larger quantities of fewer items. Food quality also suffers with a super-size menu. Kitchen staff cannot gain experience preparing a reasonable number of dishes well or devote equal attention to a myriad of items at the same time.
3. The menu contains too few dishes.
While touting an excessive number of dishes is clearly a bad idea, the same can be said of offering too few options. Such an error ranks high on the chart of restaurant menu mistakes because it limits the potential of the menu to attract a sufficiently large customer base. Menus that are too small decrease customer frequency if there aren’t enough items to entice them to come back.
4. The menu is outdated.
Some dishes are classic and timeless, while others come and go (see mistake #1). If your menu hasn’t changed since Ronald Reagan was in office (or within the past year for that matter), it’s definitely time to revisit and review. Food price fluctuations warrant regular pricing analysis to ensure you’re not losing your margins. So even if the dishes themselves haven’t changed in the past twenty years, your prices need to be regularly updated to reflect market value. Furthermore, every item on your menu should be popular. Get rid of poor-performing menu items to make room for something else.
5. The items on the menu are too complicated.
Not many people want a meal that warrants a 15-minute explanation or that comes with instructions on how to eat it. Offering a menu full of complex menu items can be confusing and unappealing to your patrons and can be extremely stressful for your kitchen staff. Too many complicated dishes on your menu can cause inconsistency issues with ingredients, availability and overall food quality.
Of course there are always exceptions to any rule, but if you find that your restaurant sales have been stagnant or dwindling, checking your menu for these common mistakes (and fixing accordingly) is a great place to start. To take the pressure off of how to manage menus, ingredients, and inventory consistently and accurately, consider investing in a restaurant point of sale system with these integrated management features.
10 most common mistakes made when on a weight loss diet
Self-consciousness has taken a toll on the mental health of the average person in the twentieth century. Peoples&rsquo thought process has changed since the emergence of new technology and with it the birth of new trends. Apps like Instagram and Snapchat have made people beauty conscious, while modern health and fitness trends have made people more body-conscious.
Talking about getting body-conscious, people are making an effort to fit in with the ideal definition of a &lsquogood body&rsquo. Individual perceptions are being shaped by these beauty standards, and people are working hard to get their dream toned/ripped/muscular body. However, in the process of reaching their desired goals, people are being misguided by falsehoods in the form of ill advice or incorrect information.
Today we will look at 10 common mistakes people make in their diet in the process of losing weight:
02 /11 Consuming so called ‘health foods’
A lot of companies falsely advertise their product as being healthy, when in fact they may not be as healthy as you think. Products like protein bars and fruit juice are often advertised as healthy products, but they are packed with unhealthy ingredients like saturated fats and added sugar, which will only make your journey towards losing fat harder. (Image: Pixabay)
03 /11 Exercising and not dieting/dieting and not exercising
Exercise and diet go hand in hand. It is advisable that in the journey of weight loss, one must indulge in both, healthy training and healthy food. Dieting is required to get the appropriate calories and nutrition while exercise is required to effectively utilize those calories for fueling the body. Neglecting either one will lead to an imbalance in metabolism and lifestyle. (Image: Pixabay)
04 /11 Snacking on the wrong foods
There is a lot of debate on whether snacking in between meals makes you gain weight. But we will take into consideration that it is none too detrimental, and that it depends on what you snack on. Snacking on nutritious food like yoghurt, oatmeal, or dry fruits not only provide nutrition but also help in curbing hunger. By snacking on foods like bread, cake or potato chips, you will consume foods that don&rsquot curb hunger and that contain calories that don&rsquot provide any nutrition (empty calories). (Image: Canva)
05 /11 Skipping meals
This is one is common. People try to consume less calories by skipping meals, but it is not such a good idea. Not only are you losing out on essential nutrition intake, but your metabolism slows down drastically, sending the body into survival mode. This makes it harder to lose weight and can even cause you to gain more weight. (Image: Pixabay)
06 /11 Consuming liquid calories
Liquids like sodas and fruit juices should be avoided while on a weight loss diet. They contain a significantly higher amount of calories as compared to solid food, and they do not make you feel satiated. The calories from liquids are also quick to get digested, so the body absorbs the high amount of calories easily, making it harder for you to lose weight. (Image: Canva)
07 /11 Not controlling temptations
It is not easy to bid farewell to your favourite foods in the quest for weight loss. However, it is important to discipline yourself when it comes to control. Most people find it difficult to conquer their temptation, and simply given. But a journey is about discipline and commitment, so along with the body, even the mind has to be trained. Reduce junk food to around 20% of your diet, for better results. (Image: Canva)
08 /11 Ignoring complex carbohydrates
Most people who try to lose weight ditch carbohydrates because they think it&rsquoll make them gain weight. Cutting to the chase, it depends on what type of carbohydrates you consume - simple or complex. It is advisable to let go of simple carbs, which is an unhealthy ingredient present in foods like pasta, white bread, and processed food. However, complex carbs like chapatti, potato and rice should not be eliminated from the diet as they are high in fiber and provide energy for body functions. (Image: Canva)
09 /11 Consuming excess healthy foods
In a bid to get rid of excess fat, people naturally switch to a healthy, more nutritious diet. But in the long run, consuming an excess of healthy food could come in the way of losing weight. Foods like almonds and cashews are healthy because they are high in nutrition, but they also contain a lot of calories. The key to losing weight is controlling the calories you consume because even high-calorie healthy foods can add to weight gain. (Image: Canva)
10 /11 Eating processed food
Processed foods are food items that have undergone chemical and mechanical changes for longer preservation and an increase in food consistency. Processed foods like ham and bacon do contain some amount of nutrition, but they are extremely unhealthy overall. They contain ingredients like refined carbohydrates, high-fructose corn syrup, and trans fats, all of which are responsible for gaining weight. (Image: Canva)
11 /11 Crash diets
Crash diet is a type of diet where one intends to lose weight in a short timespan, by consuming minimal calories in that period. Many people try this out to lose weight fast. Such a diet is harmful to the body in many ways. It weakens the immune system and causes starvation. Once the crash diet is over people tend to gain weight quickly as they start eating a lot of food, so it is not effective in the long run. (Image: Canva)
9 Food Storage Mistakes That Are Costing You Money (or Worse, Making You Sick)
Here are some of the most common food storage mistakes—plus, how to fix them.
Even common food storage mistakes have consequences. They don’t just cost you money, but you can end up wasting food and time. At the very worst, food storage mistakes can lead to food poisoning.
While we all have good intentions after cooking a meal, we often rush to put away our leftovers and end up doing it improperly. This includes using the wrong food storage containers and taking meals from the table to the refrigerator too quickly.
Another factor to consider when it comes to food storage safety is shelf placement. After a long trip to the supermarket, we try to put our perishables into the refrigerator before they spoil, placing items on shelves without much thought. This mistake seems minor, but it can actually make us sick.
While checking expiration dates is common knowledge, we rarely check what we should and should not be storing in the refrigerator. If you notice your fruits and vegetables going from ripe to rotten too quickly, it could be because you’re keeping them in the wrong part of the refrigerator. This doesn’t simply waste money, but discovering your produce is spoiled when you&aposre about to cook a meal is very frustrating.
Here are some of the most common food storage mistakes and how to easily fix them.
Katie Heil, who is acertified professional in food safety as well as a food safety education writer for State Food Safety, says choosing the wrong refrigerator shelf is a major food storage mistake. “It's important to store food in the correct order to reduce the risk of cross-contamination,” she says.
One example is storing raw ground beef above a lettuce salad. “The juices from the beef could drip down and contaminate the salad,” Heil says. “If you eat the contaminated salad, you'll likely get food poisoning. There's an easy way to prevent this—store the meat below the salad!”
Heil suggests organizing your food storage so the foods that require less or no cooking are at the top. “Foods that require more cooking should be at the bottom. That way, even if juices do drip down, they'll be killed during the cooking process. For example, ground beef has to be cooked to an internal temperature of 155°F, so it should be stored above chicken, which must be cooked to 165°F.”
We’ve all been lazy and made the mistake of putting an uncovered plate in the refrigerator. While this might not appear to be a major problem, it can be a dangerous food storage mistake and lead to cross-contamination. Heil says it’s important to remember to store everything in enclosed containers. “This may seem like a no-brainer, but it's easy to forget when you're in a hurry,” she says. “In addition to protecting it from contamination, storing food in covered containers also helps it last longer.”
If you’re really in a rush (or just tired), at the very least, you should cover plates and bowls with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. However, taking the extra time to put food in containers is best.
This is a big one! Food should ideally be stored inairtight glass food containers, such as Bayco Glass Food Storage Containers With Lids ($30 for 12 containers amazon.com). Unlike plastic, glass containers are microwave and dishwasher safe as well as free of BPA.
The worst place to store food is in those takeout containers that many of us end up hoarding away in our cabinets. They’re fine for transporting or storing your leftover dinner for lunch the next day, but they aren’t designed to be reused multiple times. The same rule applies to yogurt cups and any sort of plastic tub that you buy food in.
Why is bread so notoriously difficult to make?
"That is the thing, it isn't difficult!" says Julia Calleo, founder of My Lavender Blues. "But really, the reason why I feel like bread appears to be difficult is that the directions can sometimes be incredibly intimidating:"
- "Don't kill the yeast"
- "Make sure to let the bread rise for an hour, then rise again for another hour"
- "Attach a dough hook to your stand mixer"
"Most people don't understand what any of those terms actually mean/entail, and give up before they even begin. All bread requires is time, and of course, a little bit of labor love," says Calleo.
Laura Davidson, the owner of A Beautiful Plate, agrees. "It can feel like a steep learning curve if you're new to bread baking, but it is very fun and extremely rewarding!" says Davidson. "Once you have a solid understanding of the process, it's much simpler than it appears. You just have to start!"
The Biggest Mistakes People Make With Social Security
There are six main ways to do damage to your Social Security plan, according to academics, financial advisers and a CPA that weighed in on the issue.
Many Americans mismanage their biggest retirement asset: their Social Security benefit.
And it can cost them dearly.
For the typical American household age 55 to 64, the present value of this government pension represents 60% of their retirement assets, dwarfing the values of their homes and savings, according to Boston College’s Center for Retirement Research. Even for affluent families, Social Security income remains crucial.
“If you have a high-earner couple who earned the max and don’t claim until 70, you’re talking about [getting] the better part of $100,000 a year,” says Alicia Munnell, the center’s director. “You have to be very wealthy before you don’t consider that important.”
We’ve talked to academics, financial advisers and a certified public accountant to identify the biggest Social Security mistakes people make. They say too many people claim it early, putting themselves at risk of outliving their assets. Many of those who claim early also choose to stop working to ensure they don’t exceed the Social Security earnings limit and trigger a temporary reduction in benefits—even though continuing to work would usually boost the benefit they get when they reach full retirement age.