Bringing Fine Dining To You ...

Kathy Nicolls of Scratch Gourmet demonstrates how she assembles one of her spectacular cheese and charcuterie platters, which was set to be delivered to a local family member.

While many local people are starting to venture out again after some of the lock-down restrictions eased, for some, going out to a restaurant is still not possible.

For those who need or want to remain socially distanced but still wish to enjoy finer dining without having to turn on their own ovens, local chef and CHS ’80 grad Kathy Nicolls can help with her home meal delivery service.

Nicolls, who has enjoyed cooking for her family since she was young, originally started her small business in 2010 by making jalapeno jam, which she first experienced on a trip to New Orleans. The jam was such a hit with her family and friends that the next step was a house party, and the jams sold out quickly.

Nicolls expanded her jam flavors and added healthy homemade granolas to her menus, which were popular with the several area farmers markets, as well as Coronado Taste of Oils.

With the success of the jams and granolas, she continued honing her chef skills, and began doing private cheffing for vacationers and catering small parties for families and friends. From there, through word of mouth, she launched her very popular meal plan service, beginning with just a few clients, and the business burgeoned from there.

The meal plans are customizable for delivery from Monday thru Thursday, with the minimum order only two adult meals. The menu changes weekly, with options such as seared ahi, spanakopita, and tri tip, with a kids’ menu available as well. Nicolls also offers private catering on weekends, and has recently enjoyed creating themed menus for a local book club, creating a southern-style menu when the club read “Where The Crawdad’s Sing,” and a Russian-themed menu when they read “A Gentleman in Moscow.”

In 2018, Nicolls also added gorgeous cheese and charcuterie platters to her offerings, which have become very popular locally, particularly during the summer months during the Promenade Concert Series. Her knowledge of cheeses from around the world is impressive, and I was able to enjoy a demonstration as she created a large platter overflowing with cheeses, nuts, fruits, and various cured meats for a family member.

If you are interested in learning more about her meal plans or charcuterie platters, please visit her website at www.scratch-gourmet.com.

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