This is the Take Away Menu You've Been Waiting For
Made Foods' chef-designed menus incorporate local ingredients into new selections each month.
Many of us love the idea of being able to pick up a conveniently prepared and packaged meal, but many food companies fall short when it comes to making the most of healthy locally grown ingredients. Made Foods — a Calgary-based company that specializes in nutritious chef-driven meals not only provides customers with easy breakfasts, lunches and dinners, but also has the ability to keep things seasonal and fresh.
Made Foods’ core menu changes twice a year and also incorporates meat and produce sourced from Alberta and BC ranches and farms whenever possible. The company chooses to do a large portion of its sourcing from like-minded food producers, be it produce from Mans Organic on Coaldale, dairy products from Vital Green Organic Dairy Farm in Picture Butte, or beef from Brant Lake Wagyu from Brant, Alberta.
Using these local ingredients fits with Made Foods’ philosophy and commitment to providing a healthy and sustainable menu, but those ingredients get to shine even more brightly with the company’s new weekly feature program. Each week a member of Made Foods’ experienced and passionate kitchen team formulates a one-off dish that expresses that individual’s creativity while making the most of seasonal produce.
“With our static menu we’ll source out some good local product for the main components of our dishes,” says Made Foods Food Production Manager Kevin Hill. “With the features will also try to bring in some other local ingredients that are in season and wouldn’t be available locally at other times of the year.”
The features started appearing in Made Foods’ retail stores in early January, with a new dish coming into rotation each week. Winter dishes included a wagyu brisket, cheese-stuffed pasta shells, sweet potato cannelloni and chickpeas in Made Foods’ popular butter chicken sauce. As spring starts to take hold, the chefs will start to work with whatever seasonal ingredients inspire them, such as spring onions, asparagus and halibut.
“We’re trying to catch the ingredients as they’re coming into season and try and allow our creativity to come through while cooking some comforting food,” says sous chef Ryan Lumsden. “The main focus is really pulling in those seasonal ingredients.”
All Made Foods meals are created in consultation with nutritionists, who give the culinary team feedback to ensure that the product is nourishing for both the body and the soul. Everything is always meticulously fresh — food is prepared as soon as produce and meat shipments arrive in the team’s kitchen and is immediately packaged and sent of to retail stores the next morning. Meals stay in store no longer than five days (usually less as they get snapped up by customers), ensuring that the food is always ultra fresh. In fact, the process of sourcing, cooking and selling a Made Foods meal is generally shorter than the average grocery store produce life cycle.
Fresh Made Foods meals are available at any one of the company’s six retail stores across Calgary and can also be delivered directly to addresses within the Calgary city limit. For more information, visit the Made Foods website at madefoods.com.