Anyone Doing A "lunch" Cake?

Business By vickster Updated 21 Sep 2007 , 8:40pm by indydebi

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vickster Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 6:28pm
post #1 of 28

My shop location is right by the County Courthouse (you know, typical southern court house square). The couple of places here that do serve lunch are absolutely swamped with business. I was wondering if I should try to come up with something that could pass as a lunch item. I was thinking along the line of scones or biscuits. Some type of cheese and/or meat in them. Or possibly a quiche. It's customary around here that I could advertise them as only available between like 11 and 2 and not have to deal with it all the time. I can't do anything that would require frying because I don't want to put in the ventilation for frying. As long as I just bake I don't have to ventilate.

27 replies
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Melvira Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 6:39pm
post #2 of 28

That's a fantastic idea! It will get people in the door and once they see everything... SOLD!! I would say the idea for scones with meat and cheese would be popular! And not everyone else would have that. If you did sandwiches, all the other places already have that covered! A hearty ham quiche would also be fantastic! Mmmmmmm... now I'm hungry! But offer things that have almost a breakfast type feel to them too! I know my biggest gripe about breakfast food is that you can only get it until like 10. I'd happily eat breakfast three times a day!! (Or more! icon_redface.gif ) Good luck with this! I bet it will be a rousing success!

Edited to add: Don't forget to offer cake by the slice and cupcakes, cookies, etc. That will be your best way to get more orders!! YUM!

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JoAnnB Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 6:41pm
post #3 of 28

I would think of items that can be prepared ahead that last more than a day-Quiche is a good one

Also, things that can be prepared quickly, like wraps. maybe one or two "special' flavors a day. A non-meat variety might be one.

The options are endless, use what you can get fresh.

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Erdica Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 6:44pm
post #4 of 28

I think it's a great idea. Limiting the time is a good idea too. Maybe you could have a little cupcake tray as well that way ppl can taste your cakes also.


Mmm...now I'm hungry for quiche.

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txboog Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 6:49pm
post #5 of 28

Like everyone else, I love the idea of quiche! Also what about ham & cheese, or turkey and swiss croissants? You could also offer little lunch combos, where you get say a slice of quiche, drink and cookie or cupcake. It would be a good way of getting people to sample your desserts without having to always have a "free sample" tray ready.

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DCHall Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 6:51pm
post #6 of 28

Quiche is good, but scones or biscuits are better for people on the run. There is a bakery nearby me that makes a sausage and cheese roll. It is sausage and cheese (and sometimes scrambled egg) mixed into the dough and then rolled similar to a cinnamon roll. They are delicious.

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Melvira Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 6:57pm
post #7 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by DCHall

Quiche is good, but scones or biscuits are better for people on the run. There is a bakery nearby me that makes a sausage and cheese roll. It is sausage and cheese (and sometimes scrambled egg) mixed into the dough and then rolled similar to a cinnamon roll. They are delicious.




Oh...my...god... did you miss that part where I'm a breakfast addict? You just sent me into paralyzing seizures with that description!! I am dying over here!! icon_lol.gif

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JenLen Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 7:00pm
post #8 of 28

What a great idea!! What about stuffed croissants? I love those! Do you have employees? If not, you might want to shy away from things that would be time consuming to make if a big group of people came in (ex. sandwiches...unless you had a variety already made up). I have an excellent recipe for Lorraine Swiss Quiche.....let me know if you want it! icon_smile.gif

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melvin01 Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 7:06pm
post #9 of 28

There is a bakery around here that has ham/turkey and cheese filled croissants and they are really delicious and pretty filling.

I also like kolaches or pigs in a blanket. I make them for my parties (with hotdogs and crescent rolls), people just go nuts over them. Of course you would make your own dough, but if you have local sausage you could put into them or use, it is always a good thing to do a local favorite (we have Elgin sausage here and people seem more likely to buy something that's local).

I think if you offer lunch items, you will definitely get more traffic in your store. Seems like you have a great location, although you may have to hire more people for the lunch crowd, but that is a good thing!

Here is a website of a place downtown here in Austin. They don't do fried foods, but most of their sandwiches are on toasted bread. It has some ideas of things you may want to do. They also have pre-made sandwiches out at lunchtime that you can buy if you don't want to wait for a sandwich to be made.

http://www.sweetishhill.com/

Hope it helps and good luck!

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lanibird Posted 18 Sep 2007 , 7:16pm
post #10 of 28

I too think that is a great idea. Since someone mentioned people on the go, maybe even consider ready-to-go wrap sandwiches. I love those, and they are so easy to make. Plus there are so many gourmet (whole wheat, sun-dried tomato, spinach) tortillas out there, and people seem to really love them.

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vickster Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 1:38am
post #11 of 28

Thanks for the ideas. I'm leaning toward the scones and the quiche. I will have to have mostly take out as there will only be seating for 6 or 8.

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momsandraven Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 3:21am
post #12 of 28

What about mini sandwiches on muffins? I personally am addicted to ham & cheese served on pumpkin muffins, or a small scoop of tuna on a bran muffin, etc. You could sell them in qtys of 2 in a little box with a bag of chips. Or bagel sandwiches- YUMM! Here's another thought, focus on daily soup and develop a reputation for amazing breadsticks to dip in your soup.

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vickster Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 4:24pm
post #13 of 28

I like the sound of that, Moms. Is your pumpkin muffin sweet? So you slice the muffins open? Are they regular size muffins or Otis Spunkmeyer size?
I'm not sure about soup in a carry out situation, although I have to brag a bit. I'm a pretty good homemade soupster. Also, soup is somewhat seasonal here. We have long, hot summers. Soup isn't a food of choice for a lot of months here.

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Melvira Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 4:32pm
post #14 of 28

Ham and cheese on a pumpkin muffin? I got a chill when I read that!!! I am going to have to try that!!!! party.gif

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yh9080 Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 4:46pm
post #15 of 28

I actually have two suggestions:

1. Healthy sandwich as it is difficult to find anything "healthy". You could maybe make your own bread.

2. Box lunches with sandwich, chips, and a baked item. Box lunches seem to do really well here at my work because they can be ordered for meetings, conferences, etc.

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vickster Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 8:52pm
post #16 of 28

OOOh. That sounds like a great idea for my situation, 90. If I do a lunch item, it will have to be about 90 percent take out as I'll only have seating for about 6. (my seating was planned mainly for sitting down and talking with Bride to be type customers)

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momsandraven Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 9:52pm
post #17 of 28

I would say using a regular sized muffin/cupcake pan. Yep, I just split them in half like I'm torting a cake and put in a slice of ham & some nice sharp cheddar. If you go to big on the muffin, you lose the taste of the ham & cheese in there. Those lunchable packs have the perfect size little round ham pieces in a pinch, but brown sugar ham shaved real thin and folded up is my fave. A little piece of canadian bacon is great too!

Here's another thought, you could make mini loaves of pumpkin quick bread and slice them for sandwiches too! Then you could even toast them if you wanted. Oh man, I'm making myself hungry now! LOL OR, how about a cranberry bran quick bread with shaved turkey & swiss? (Guess who is heading for the grocery store tonight! I just talked myself into my lunch for tomorrow!)

I see what you mean about the soup, being a northerner, I'm all about the soup from Sept - April or so! icon_smile.gif Sandwich and a yogurt cup or cottage cheese with fruit is a nice combo too. You'd have my business!

Can't wait to hear what you go with & how it works out!

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Nikki_B Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 10:05pm
post #18 of 28

Quiche cups in a jumbo muffin pan are so yummy.. and you can make all veggie options, etc.

Fillo with jack cheese and turkey/ham is amazing.. fillo dough is relatively cheap to buy (pain to make) and you can turn out a lot of sandwhich rolls/pouches with it.

I really reccomend staying away from croissants unless you're like, an EXPERT in making them. Croissants are tricky to make, but if you can figure out a way to make them quickly and well, they do keep a few days and you can sell them through the week.

Using another dough, however, to wrap your fillings could be very yummy and unique. I once had an apple ham and cheddar thingy that was wrapped with challah bread. It was pretty much heaven in a bun icon_biggrin.gif

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Melvira Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 10:18pm
post #19 of 28

OMG, I just put on ten pounds!! You know what's really good with the turkey sandwich that was just mentioned?? Instead of mayo or something like that, stir some cream cheese with a spoonful of cranberry jelly and a handful of dried craisins!! Oh.... soooo good!

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johnniekake Posted 19 Sep 2007 , 11:32pm
post #20 of 28

I just came across this thread.........I have a cake shop in the down town district and I I did this for about a year on and off.......Box lunches TOGO

We did sandwich,cup of soup and dessert.........but we only did one item a day,but a differnt item everyday of the week....one day it would be example Monday-turkey crossiant,potato soup,cupcake
Tuesday-quiche,veg soup,cookie

it went over really well...too well...because the more people that came in,it gave me more exposure for the cakes and desserts....that I got bombarded and I had to stop and start consentrating on the sweets again.............people would call and want to know what the dessert was in the box lunch not the food icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif

needless to say Im back doing strickly desserts(my passion) but the exposure was priceless..........so go for it,because the little lunches brought in the BIG desserts!!(for me icon_biggrin.gif icon_biggrin.gif )

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bitofsnshn Posted 20 Sep 2007 , 1:54am
post #21 of 28

would about a salads w/ muffins. mmmmm.

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alimonkey Posted 20 Sep 2007 , 3:05am
post #22 of 28

I have a great recipe for pear-hazelnut scones that I got out of Caprial's Desserts I usually use pecans in them just because that's what I usually have on hand, but the scones are really good with either turkey or ham and some cheddar cheese. When I make them, I usually do a double or triple batch (just for home) because they disappear so fast and I like to have some in the freezer. I've tried a few variations but keep coming back to the pear-hazelnut ones. I guess that why it was in the book. icon_biggrin.gif

Split biscuits with a mini-frittata in the middle would be good, since all components freeze well (depending on what's in the frittata.)

Also, along a different line, focaccia bread is a fairly simple yeast bread that a lot of people really like and can be personalized a bit. Makes great sammiches too.

Really like the box lunch idea too.

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vickster Posted 21 Sep 2007 , 12:37am
post #23 of 28

Wow, I've got a lot of ideas. I'll have to start some recipe testing. Likely a salad would work better here than soup for most of the year. I really like the idea of the box lunch. Those of you familiar, are they really boxes, like cake boxes, or the styrofoam boxes? Seem like using a box similar to a cake box with your bakery label would be good advertising, but I can certainly see that styrofoam has its function.

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yh9080 Posted 21 Sep 2007 , 1:25am
post #24 of 28

As I mentioned earlier, we order box lunches for meetings, conferences. My co-worker and I order about 40 every Wednesday for a conference.

The boxes are either the box type, like our cake boxes, or the clear hard plastic type and they always have the vendor's sticker and are marked with the kind of sandwich that is inside. They come with the sandwich, packets of condiments, napkin, and either chips, pasta salad, or a fruit cup. Some have a pickle and sometimes, a piece of fruit, usually a banana. They do come with the ford for the salad/fruit cup, if applicable. They always have a knife (for spreading condiments) and of course, a dessert, usually a cookie or brownie.

I know that you would have to fold the boxes but we actually prefer them-they are easier to handle for us and easier to balance on one's lap. From my standpoint as the one who has to organize them on the table, they are easier to stack. Plus, I think the boxes just look neater.

Maybe you could start out with just 2-3 different sandwiches to see how it goes. Then you could gradually expand your menu.

Good luck and let us know how it works out!

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adawndria Posted 21 Sep 2007 , 1:41am
post #25 of 28

Since your seating is limited, do you have the option to have lunch seating outside? Like a sidewalk cafe? In the cooler weather, it would be nice and it will draw attention to your store! Don't forget the "Now Serving Lunch" banner! icon_smile.gif

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vickster Posted 21 Sep 2007 , 5:56pm
post #26 of 28

No. We have a major street on the front, major alley on the side, and the main city parking area in the back, a building on the other side. Plus, noon time in Arkansas just doesn't have that many nice days. Fall is really beautiful but both spring and fall we have rain fairly often. We are in a really good spot for take out, though, being next to the main city parking area. The restaurant on the other side of the parking lot from us is only open from 7 to 2 and seems to do very well. I've also thought it might be a little easier to go for a breakfast meal than lunch. But seems to me cake orders are more likely to come in the afternoon. I don't want to have to "tend the store" twelve hours a day! By 5:30 they roll up the sidewalks. Except on Saturday evening the old timers "pick and grin" on the courthouse lawn. It's Mayberry.

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adawndria Posted 21 Sep 2007 , 6:00pm
post #27 of 28

My parents live in Arkansas, and I was born there! Where do you live?

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indydebi Posted 21 Sep 2007 , 8:40pm
post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Melvira

I know my biggest gripe about breakfast food is that you can only get it until like 10.




Are you kidding me!!!?? icon_surprised.gif MY biggest gripe, being a "I hate traditional breakfast foods" person, is all the restaurants that advertise "breakfast served 24 hours a day" but I can't get "regular" food until after 10:30!!!

Everyone tells you to eat SOMETHING for breakfast, but the only thing available is traditional breakfast foods. Read an article once that said fast food breakfast are the worst health-wise and said it would be healthier to eat a Big Mac for breakfast. My response was "Sure, buddy!! I"d LUV to have a Big Mac for breakfast! Just try ORDERING one at 8:30 in the morning!!"" icon_mad.gif

If I order pork on a (mc)muffin with cheese, everyone thinks that's normal. But if I want beef on a bun with cheese, they look at me like I'm weird!

Gosh, I think I just became one of those pet-peeved people who detoured a thread! icon_redface.gif icon_lol.gif

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