Horizon Catering takes the pressure off holiday cooking while supporting Inter-Faith Food Shuttle.
This holiday season, share a delicious meal with your loved ones that you don’t have to prepare yourself in service of a good cause—and support members of the local community who are working to better their lives.
Chef Terri Hutter founded the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle’s catering program in 1997 as a way to help raise money for the organization, which strives to end hunger in North Carolina, while providing an avenue for students to train for culinary jobs. Last year, Inter-Faith relaunched the program as Horizon Catering and, just last month, released a new selection of tasty menu items curated by Nunzio Scordo, chef at Driftwood Southern Kitchen and Bodega, and catering chef Jim Hinger, a former production manager for La Farm Bakery.
Items on the the full-service catering menu are prepared using fresh, locally grown ingredients, including produce from the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle Farm, in dishes such as French toast for breakfast, Cubanos and mushroom mac and cheese for lunch and a diverse variety of hors d’oeuvres, entrees, salads and sides for dinner.
“What stood out to me was knowing that every event we produce food for, a large percentage of the profit made goes right back into Inter-Faith Food Shuttle’s amazing programs,” says Hinger. “It really makes me feel good knowing that getting to do something I love on a day-to-day basis, and that I have such a huge passion for, is in return helping to feed underprivileged children or our seniors.”
Scordo and Hinger also teamed up to revamp Horizon’s culinary job training program into the Culinary Apprenticeship Program, which will accept new applications this month. CAP’s mission is to teach unemployed or underemployed people the basic skills for working in a commercial kitchen through hands-on training with the eventual goal of placing them in entry-level positions at restaurants or in other commercial kitchens where they can continue to develop their skills and create careers.
“The people that are going into that program are kind of re-assimilating into life and into different kinds of situations and they need work,” explains Scordo. “[The apprenticeship program] will help them and it’ll help the restaurant industry on a local level.”
Maria Biron graduated from Inter-Faith’s culinary program in 2013 and now works as a production cook for Horizon Catering under kitchen production manager Sunshine Beard, who also went through the program. Biron says she was in a bad place in her life when she found out about Inter-Faith Food Shuttle’s culinary program. While taking classes at Wake Tech, she took a chance on applying and got in, finishing with a 99.9 average.
“It’s a good program to be in, especially if you have a passion to cook but are in a situation where you don’t know how to get the right training,” says Biron, who has worked for Horizon Catering for six years and plans to continue carrying out Hutter’s mission of providing food for the community.
Profits from Horizon Catering go directly back into Inter-Faith Food Shuttle’s hunger relief programs, which include Backpack Buddies, Grocery Bags for seniors, mobile markets and school pantries.
“When you partner with Horizon, you’re helping to feed hungry people,” says Laura Rice, Inter-Faith’s communications and media manager. “You’re doing something that nobody else is giving you the opportunity to do.” horizoncatering.org