How Chef Garbo’s Personal Chef Service Works

Working with Garbo’s Personal Chef Service is like having a Life Coach in your kitchen when it comes to healthy meals! We all want to eat better but getting there can be daunting. All the supplements in the world, or meal delivery and meal prep kits like Hello Fresh are half baked options at best. Why? Because they’re a one size fits all approach, not a life changing solution like Chef Garbo. She is expert at cutting to the chase when it comes to getting you on the path to optimal health and wellness by creating healthy meals specific to your unique requirements and desires.

Initial Consultation and Profile

How It Works - Chef - Garbo's Personal Chef Service Chef Garbo is a Personal Chef who takes great care in cooking beautiful, nourishing, satisfying food for her clients. Above all, her service is very personal – tailored to the client’s lifestyle, tastes, dietary needs … all the factors that contribute to memorable dining. As a personal chef, she handles all the work involved, from planning to shopping, cooking, and cleanup. As the client, you get to do the fun part … the eating.

The first step is getting to know each other. Chef Garbo will interview you over the phone to discover your overall goals and each family member’s preferences, needs, and quirks. Next, she will e-mail you a detailed “Food Preferences Questionnaire” in advance of your in-person consultation so she can come to the meeting prepared with sample menu ideas based on your preferences outlined in the Questionnaire. Finally, she will schedule a cook date that works with your busy life style should you move forward with her service.

Dietary Requirements

Today many people are dealing with specific dietary requirements. This could be allergies or restrictions necessary for maintaining health, such as gluten-free or peanut-free diets prescribed by doctors. A particular dietary regimen such as a Keto, Paleo, Vegan, or Dairy Free diet is also a common request. In some families, family members may have different dietary requirements, which Chef Garbo can easily accommodate.

Over the years, Chef Garbo has worked with her client’s Doctors and Nutritionists to determine every detail that is necessary to make sure you adhere to your dietary restrictions. And she has the tools to produce reports that she can send you each week that show the nutritional values per serving size when it comes to tracking Calories, Carbs, Sodium, Cholesterol, Sugar, and Protein etc. You’ll have peace of mind knowing that your meals can be easily prepared within the strictest of guidelines in a snap! Below is a sample nutrition report that Chef Garbo creates each week for her clients with high blood pressure that need to restrict their salt intake and must be low in carbohydrates and low in calories on a per serving basis:

Sample Client Nutrition Report

Food Preferences

Family members will naturally have their own food likes and dislikes. There may be certain foods to avoid or favorite foods to serve frequently. Some clients might want gourmet dishes every night, or a casual dish one night and gourmet fare the next. Some may want tremendous variety while others want their favorite soup every week. This is a personal chef service, so it’s customized just for you.

And what if you have picky eaters in the house? Chef Garbo cooks for many families who like to mix things up when it comes to meal planning. If you want exotic spicy Indian Curries and kid friendly options on the same menu plan consider it done with Chef Garbo. And what exactly is a “Kid Friendly” meal? With Chef Garbo it’s what ever you want it to be. It might look something like this: You like your Chicken Enchiladas with the sauce on the side and your kids don’t like onions but everyone loves lots of cheese, Chef Garbo makes it happen just the way you want it. See below sample of a bi-weekly menu plan with adult and kid friendly menu options that Chef Garbo e-mails to her clients for approval before each cook date:


Sample Client Menu

  • Crispy Fish & Tartar Sauce
    Crispy Pan Fried Cod Fish Coated in Panko Bread Crumbs with Home Made Tartar Sauce with Capers, Parsley and Horseradish
    Servings: 4, Freezer
  • Tortellini Casserole with Meaty Sauce
    Cheese Filled Tortellini Layered with Savory Tomato Sauce, Ground Beef, Monterey Jack and Cheddar Cheese
    Servings: 4, Freezer
  • Tri-Tip Stir Fry or “Lomo Saltado” 4 (Whole Body Reboot)
    Stir-fried Tri-Tip with Tomatoes, Onions, and Balsamic-Soy Chili Garlic Sauce
    Servings: 4, Freezer
  • Curried Turkey Burgers
    Turkey Burgers with Onions and Curry Powder, topped with Jack Cheese and served on toasted Buns with Curry Mayonnaise
    Servings: 6, Freezer
  • Chicken Enchiladas
    Rolled Corn Tortillas filled with Chicken and Cheese Topped with a Red Enchilada Sauce, Cheese, Black Olives, and Green Onions
    +Gazpacho Soup (SCD Safe)
      Hearty Gazpacho Soup with Tomatoes, Cucumber, and Green Bell Peppers, served chilled
    +Fiesta Lime Rice
    Rice with Black Beans, Corn, Scallions, Tomatoes, and Lime Cilantro Dressing
    Servings: 4, Freezer
Download print version of client menu here

Or perhaps you want your kids to eat healthy meals like the adults do. That’s easy because Chef Garbo always makes healthy organic versions of all your favorite comfort foods. She can even sneak in the leafy green veggies into the casseroles and the kids will never know!

Menu Planning

Each week Chef Garbo creates a highly customized menu plans tailored to your specific needs and reviews it with you to accommodate particular changes and requests you may have. If you change your mind or you find a recipe from your favorite food blogger no problem! Send the recipe link to Chef Garbo and she’ll prepare it for you. You can even provide her with your grandmother’s family favorite recipes that she might have prepared from vintage Gourmet Magazines!

Gourmet Magazine Series – Biegnet Recipe Circa 1960’s (Click for Gallery)

The bottom line: Chef Garbo has a repertoire of thousands of recipes from which to choose. No restaurant, meal kit or meal delivery service can compete with this level of variety when it comes to meal planning!

As an experienced chef, she creates exceptional dining experiences and can easily make changes while maintaining the quality. Your family can have as much variety as they want, regardless of dietary restrictions and preferences.

Grocery Shopping

On your scheduled cook date, Chef Garbo shops for the freshest organic ingredients at Whole Foods before she arrives at your home. She knows how to plan meals to take advantage of seasonal produce. If you have your own favorite farmer’s market, produce and meat purveyors that deliver to your home, Chef Garbo will coordinate with you to incorporate those ingredients into the menu planning process. Many meals can be prepared to be every bit as gourmet when reheated after freezing as they were when initially prepared. Gourmet meals that are fresh and healthy require meticulous planning and shopping, which Chef Garbo has down to a science.

Food Preparation, Packaging, and Cleanup

Award winning Personal Chef Garbo brings her own cooking equipment to your kitchen to prepare great food just the way you like it! She’ll be in your kitchen for 6-8 hours cooking two weeks of meals, and then packing them up to serve later. Meals are packed and labeled with reheating instructions in convenient BPA-free containers and stored, organized by the meal, in the refrigerator and freezer. A full two weeks of gourmet meals will be prepared in a day, and you’ll be all set for simple, healthy meals for the whole family. Chef Garbo wraps up each day of cooking with kitchen clean-up, leaving the kitchen spotless.

Ongoing Meal Planning Consultations

After each cook date, Chef Garbo leaves a menu list of your two week meal plan on your freezer door for your convenience and opportunity to leave valuable feedback on what you liked, didn’t like or never want to see again. A quality Personal Chef Service is an on-going work in progress so it’s critical that you let Chef Garbo know after each cook date how you are liking the meal plans. This way she can get dialed into your preferences. If the menu options are not fitting in with your busy lifestyle in terms of easy heating instructions, Chef Garbo needs to know this. Every client is different. Some of Chef Garbo’s clients are so busy that they simply want all heat and eat options. Other clients enjoy a little cooking and food prep when it comes to fresh serve composed salads and pan seared meats. In this case, Chef Garbo might leave the marinated proteins in the freezer and fresh serve composed salads in the fridge that they can quickly prepare at the time they choose. Chef Garbo even provides her clients with beautiful photos with plating instructions so no one would ever know the meals were previously frozen. The end result is that her clients get the enjoyment of participating in a healthy dinner prep experience without all the hassle!

FAQ

1. PERSONAL CHEF VS PRIVATE CHEF – WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?

A Private Chef typically cooks exclusively for one client often preparing 3 meals a day and frequently “lives” on site. A Personal Chef cooks for several clients, usually one client per day, and creates weekly or bi-weekly meals based on their food preferences and dietary restrictions if any. The meals are packaged and labeled with heating instruction and stored in the freezer or refrigerator to be enjoyed at their leisure.

2. DO YOU COOK IN MY KITCHEN?

Yes. On the agreed-upon cook date, I come prepared with my pots and pans and all the groceries to prepare your meals in your kitchen. I leave your kitchen full of wonderful aromas and spotless at the end of the day.

3. HOW LONG DOES YOUR SERVICE TAKE?

Chef Garbo will be in your kitchen for about 6 to 8 hours depending upon the complexity of the meals ordered. She specializes in 2-week meal plans: 5 entrees plus 2 sides that compliment the entrees, all with 4 servings each totaling to 7 dishes. To prepare 7 dishes in a day, from start to finish, which involves slicing and dicing cooking, cooling, packaging, labeling, and clean up can take 6 to 8 hours…. In short, figure about 1 hour per dish.

4. DO I NEED TO BE HOME ON THE COOK DATE

No, it is not necessary to be home while cooking but I do prefer that you are there upon my arrival and departure so that you can lock up accordingly during the first few cook sessions.

5. HOW MUCH FREEZER SPACE DO YOUR MEALS TAKE UP

You will need considerable freezer space to store 2 weeks’ worth of dinner meals. Chef Garbo provides all the containers (2 cup & 4 cup) that are square in shape which stack easily and uses shelf space efficiently.

Meals in Freezer

6. I HAVE LOTS OF CONTAINERS. CAN YOU USE THEM?

If you have uniformly sized square shaped containers the answer is yes! But if they are round or oval in shape they are not recommended as they are space wasters.

7. HOW ARE THE MEALS HEATED

Every container is labeled with easy instructions on how to defrost in the fridge the night before and heating methods that will range from the microwave or oven to stove-top depending upon the meal type.

Mexican Chicken Heating Instructions   

8. YOUR ENTREES COST ABOUT THE SAME AS A RESTAURANT, WHY?

The fees I charge include all the components that make up the uniqueness of a Personal Chef Service. This includes the detailed food preferences Questionnaire and the free Initial Consultation that outline your likes and dislikes, food allergies, special diets, or medical conditions. Plus you must factor in the grocery shopping, meal planning, and coming to your home to prepare highly customized meals based on your specific preferences. Plus all the packaging and clean up. A restaurant on the other hand, is a production line preparing a fixed menu of entrees from which to choose unlike the thousand of dishes I can prepare. You must also consider numerous extra expenses and hassles with a restaurant:

  1. Driving to its location
  2. Waiting for a table
  3. Hoping your server is in a good mood
  4. Hoping they can accommodate your dietary restrictions
  5. Dealing with a noisy environment
  6. Paying for the meal (average cost in SF): $25
  7. Tipping the server 20% $ 5
  8. Baby Sitter Cost (average $/hr. $18 in SF) $54 (for 3 hrs if you have children)
  9. Paying for parking ($4/hr. in SF) $13 (for 3 hrs)
  10. Driving home again

Total Cost Per Meal: Dining Out: $97 Total Cost Per Meal: Chef Garbo: $20 When considering all the extra tips and charges that go with restaurant dining the fee per meal quickly adds up and often exceeds what you would pay for a Personal Chef. With Garbo’s Personal Chef Service you get the gourmet quality of a restaurant in the comfort of your own home without all the hassle and expense!

9. HOW LONG WILL A 2 WEEK MEAL SERVICE LAST?

Chef Garbo specializes in 2-week meal plans which will feed a family of 4 for 1 week, a couple for 2 weeks, and a single person for 1 month. If you travel or dine out a lot, the meals will last longer. We can work these details out after 2-3 cook dates to see what frequency works best for you.

10. WHAT IS THE PAYMENT METHOD?

Payment is due upon the date of service. I prefer Checks or PayPal.