Career Options: Culinary Arts – Surefire Pizza

Surefire Pizza owner Melissa Whitehead explores the the catering experience and preparing fresh, authentic Italian pizzas on site for different events. While food is exactly what comes to mind when you think of catering and culinary arts, creating a successful catering company involves so much more than just food. With Melissa’s background in finance and culinary arts, she had the perfect blend of skills to get a successful business off the ground. If you love making and sharing good food, culinary arts might be the perfect career for you!

To learn more, watch the video or read the transcript below.

Career Options: Culinary Arts Transcript

Surefire Pizza is an authentic Italian pizza catering business.  The pizza cooks in about 90 seconds and we can cook four at a time, so the process goes pretty fast.

Our catering business is different from a lot of businesses.  We have a wood fired oven mounted on a trailer that we bring to the job site, whether it’s a house, or a business, or a park, wherever it might be, and we cook pizza right there on the spot for people to eat and enjoy.  A lot of other caterers they’ll bring food that has been prepared before and they just try to keep it warm for you, but we cook hot, fresh food until everyone’s finished eating.  And we also include options to be able to have salad and gelato and dessert pizzas as well.

I have a degree in baking and pastry arts as well as a degree in business finance and a certificate in financial planning.

I’ve always loved food, I like to make it and it’s fun to make it for other people.  So I’ve done wedding cakes and things like that in the past, and when we had an opportunity to start making pizza I thought this would be a good way to build up a business and get back into making food again.  On a daily basis we’re making dough in our kitchen, we’re washing dishes, we’re weighing ingredients for the toppings to see how much we need to bring to an event.

I highly recommend going to culinary school where you can learn from professional chefs who have been in the industry for many years and they can teach you techniques, and recipes, and how to put foods together and flavors together.  They also teach how to plate, how to make things look appealing on a plate, which is very important when you’re serving food to people, you want people to want to eat your food.

My formal education in finance and culinary arts was essential in me being able to build a catering business.

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