This Cioppino is Full of Flavor and Love
Written By: Iyana Edouard
Photographed By: Rebecca Gnasso Colette’s Catering
It’s that time of year again, a time for warm and delicious comfort food. As the weather remains cool and the holidays wind down, most of us still crave filling meals, that warm us up in all the right places. Regardless of the season, party, event, or any special occasion they all call for memorable dishes to bring or serve. Yes, you could bring a store bought pre-made meal but that is definitely not warm and cozy food. Finding a good caterer for a party at any time of the year can be a challenge, especially if some have dietary restrictions. However, Colette’s Catering in Fullerton can truly accommodate to all while also providing amazing meals for any event, big or small.
Colette’s customizes menus and pricing based on the client’s particular needs. They also include event packaging and full service options, cater to all types of budgets and dietary needs, and will even build a kitchen on site for events when necessary—They do it all.
The catering company first began as a one woman operation in 1992. The company has now rightfully acquired a dedicated following of loyal customers and staff that truly loves working there, which includes their Executive Chef Colleen Zielinski. Chef Colleen truly loves food and the creativity that comes with it. Being a catering chef in particular allows her to be creative with customizing menus for weddings, themed events or putting a twist on classic dishes. Chef Colleen decided to make a fisherman’s stew called Cioppino.
This recipe is popular due to the ability to tailor ingredients to taste and has a “heartwarming” flavor, no matter the combination. It’s popularity is also because the ingredients are so delicious and fresh.
Before even creating the full dish, each ingredient looked and smelled incredibly fresh and delicious. The seafood ingredients of the meal looked like they were pulled fresh off the boat, and the aroma of each vegetable and seasoning smelled like a farmers market. Dip the sourdough bread in the tomato fennel broth with bits of clam. Crab, mussels, and all of its seasons and spices on top. The combination of the crunch of the bread with the smokiness of the broth, the savory, buttery flavors of the seafood, the sharpness of the fennel and sweetness of basil just melt in your mouth. Even if you aren’t one to usually enjoy seafood, you would fall in love with this dish.
If Chef Colleen’s passion for creating good food doesn’t convince you to book Colette’s Catering sometime in the near future, I don’t know what will. Maybe the fact that they only used fresh seasonal locally sourced ingredients—and make everything in house, from the bread to the delicious sauces and soups. As she put together this winter-friendly dish, she remembered what she loved about food in the first place, which is the ability to always make something delicious that people will love.
Q&A With Chef Colleen Zielinski of Colette’s Catering:
Q: What is your culinary background?
Colleen Zielinski: I attended Kendall College in Chicago for culinary school and then began as a cook at the Four Seasons Hotel in Chicago. My catering career began with a top catering company in Chicago, where I refined my catering skills. After, I moved to California and worked for Wolfgang Puck Catering in Hollywood.
Q: There are a lot of great reviews, especially for wedding catering, why do you think your food and service ranks so well?
CZ: We pride ourselves in creating an amazing experience from start to finish. It’s a team effort. It’s an amazing feeling to know what we produce will create memories that will last a lifetime.
Q: What advice do you have for anyone interested in or starting out in the professional catering industry?
CZ: It’s gotta come from your heart, you’ve got to be passionate about it. Catering can be challenging and fun—every day is something different, a new challenge, a new adventure. I would suggest working in a professional kitchen before investing in culinary school. It’s not all the glitz and glam you see on T.V. I try to stay humble and that’s what pushes me to work harder. I wouldn’t want to do anything else, the whole reason I cook is to make people happy.
History, Served Warm: Considered an Italian-American dish, Cioppino originated from San Francisco, CA
Don’t Forget Dessert! Colette’s Catering has a phenomenal team of chefs. Let the Cioppino be the start for your first course, and bring in fresh pastries or a decadent cake to close the show.
1568 Kimberly Ave
Fullerton, CA 92831
Colette’s Catering Makes a Cioppino Perfect for Any Occasion