Monday, January 10, 2011


Stuart & Welch is now officially, Michael Stuart NY

After two successful years, partners Michael Steifman & Kaegan Welch have decided to pursue separate interests.  Kaegan is dedicating his time to other interests while Michael will be expanding on the successful catering business with his new venture,

Michael Stuart NY

Michael Stuart NY is a boutique catering company focused on local, seasonal food, exceptional service and a commitment to social responsibility.  Combining  a wealth of experience and creativity, our custom created, famers market inspired menus have become the talk of the town. 

You can find the new blog on the Blogger website at:

Our new website is up and running at:

You can also reach us by E-mail at:

Our phone numbers are the same: W (347) 689-9822 or M (646) 320-5715

We would much appreciate it if you would take a moment to update our information in your contacts, join us as followers on our blog and on Twitter, friend us on Facebook and, of course, give us a call if you have an event you’d like us to cater!  

Thank you for your continued support,

Michael Stuart Steifman
& all the staff at Michael Stuart NY

Friday, November 12, 2010

Speaking of a signature drink……

I recently attended an out of state wedding where the ceremony took place outdoors on a crisp October afternoon at the foliage’s full peak.  As we entered the yard we were offered a choice of a hot-spiced apple cider or hot-spiced red wine, in these giant metal mugs, to take the chill off while we waited for all the guests to arrive and for the ceremony to begin.  It was such a simple touch, but the gesture showed that the bride and groom were really thinking about the comfort and enjoyment of their friends and family and I can’t seem to stop thinking about how gorgeous that afternoon was.  I can only imagine that if I was sitting there shivering in my black tie gown that my memories of that same afternoon wouldn’t be so warm and fuzzy, so to speak…. At least certainly not warm!

In my last post, I mentioned how guests went crazy for our homemade, non-alcoholic, picnic style ginger ale & iced-teas and that got me thinking about what other specialty drinks we could re-invent to liven up the holiday party season.  There are SO many recipes out there that it hardly feels like there’s an original drink left to invent, but if you’re having a smallish get-together and have a stash of ingredients and some basic bar equipment on hand, I think it’s fun to experiment and fill each glass to the tippler’s tastes.  Or, you can blend up a pitcher at a time for a group, compare notes and change up each batch as the comments roll in.

To start, red wine or port, brandy, whiskey, rum and gin are easy to work with for a winter specialty drink because they already have a heavy spiciness that will complement the extra ingredients rather than compete like Tequila.  Next, triple sec and Amaretto add a kick more alcohol and wintery flavors to that base, or you could go less potent with just apple, pear, blood orange, lemon or pomegranate flesh or all-natural juice instead.  Finally, unexpected and fun ingredients like star anise, cinnamon sticks, maple syrup, cayenne pepper, ginger root, nutmeg and cloves make the statement that some real thought went into the preparation of this drink and can turn your cocktails into an experience to remember. 

Here’s an example of a cocktail I’m planning to serve at a party I’m having soon… with pears in season and spiciness on the brain, I’m hoping my guests will agree it’s a good one.

To make one serving:
2-3 thin slices of fresh ginger root
5 thin slices fresh pear
Organic sugar
1 ½ oz Gin or Vodka
¾ oz Triple sec (Cointreau or Grand Marnier)
¾ oz Freshly squeezed lemon juice
Dash of ground Allspice

Muddle the ginger and pear with the sugar in a bar shaker.  Add 1 ½ oz gin or vodka, 1 oz of triple sec, lemon juice and all spice.  Cover and shake briefly to blend ingredients.  Pour mixture, unstrained, over ice in a rocks glass.  Garnish with a slice of pear (optional).

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

We are Heros

On what was one of the last sunny, warm weekends of the year (so sad), Stuart and Welch spent an awesome day covering Nature Needs Heros, an event for Timberland at Governor’s Island.  Launching a new line of eco-friendly footwear (made with recycled materials) for magazine & blog editors, the event was outdoorsy and picnic-y feeling, and we wanted the food to reflect the spirit of the event.  

The booths and bars made of repurposed shipping containers complemented our own use of Mason jars, old crates, barrels, logs, tins and lots of other reusable materials that both cut down on waste and, happily, look antique-chic.  

Mini savory quiches, salmon toasts, hearty salads and rustic sandwiches with lots of filling choices were the perfect on-the-go fare for the busy participants.  

And, by way of a PSA, never forget that a surprising and tasty drink can really make a big impression at an event.   The guests at the Timberland event went CRAZY for our homemade ginger ale and our peach-lemon verbena-basil sweet tea.  It was even mentioned in some of the blogs that covered the event.

Finally, if you’ll forgive the tooting our own horn, check out the E-mail we received from the coordinator of the event….
“ The event yesterday was SUCH a big success - the Timberland folks are like, seriously, over the moon and the amazing food was a HUGE part of our success! THANK YOU!

Literally EVERY person I've spoken to raved about the food + drinks! I'll send you more coverage as it comes, but check out some nice pics of the food in this coverage (straight food pics + drinks in folks' hands).  People DO NOT normally cover food at a fashion event - all a testament to the power of Stuart and Welch!”

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Women's Health magazine event

On a gorgeous Saturday in September on Pier 46 in Manhattan, Stuart & Welch spent the afternoon enjoying the sun and doing what we love with cooking demonstrations for Women’s Health magazine.   The event was to support women’s efforts to live a healthy, active lifestyle and Start and Welch was enlisted to provide nutritious & delicious foods to the VIP tent and to demonstrate how to make low calorie, low-fat foods that are also tasty and fun for the invited participants.   

The recipes, provided by Women’s Health contributors, had all been tested for nutritional value and met their standards for healthy, low-calorie meals.  We took on the challenge to flaunt the ease of making  “bikini-friendly” grilled (we used an electric grill to prove the recipe valid for you city-gals!)  turkey-gorgonzola burgers, with a surprisingly low 293 calories.  We also demoed a black bean, sesame & tofu stir-fry, a shrimp & succotash, and a simple, light breakfast or side; honey-limed fruit salad.  All delicious!

Not only were the folks from Women’s Health and their guests enthusiastic about the food we provided, they were also really impressed with the healthy, gluten-free sweets provided by my friend Tully at Tulu’s bakery which, by the way, are not just for people with gluten allergies- everyone thinks they're amazing!

Even though bikini season is a long time coming it’s never too late to add a healthy recipe to your repertoire, so here is the recipe for those low-cal burgers, plus 5 more versions, courtesy of Women’s Health magazine….

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Hardware Harmony

Stuart and Welch had the recent opportunity to team up with Domestic ConstructionPoppies & PosiesClean Wash Letterpress and Lovely Bride to create a theme wedding inspired by objects procured from a hardware store or metal shop.  This ensemble of experts in their various fields brought their unique visions for the theme to the table in a way that fully complemented one another and ended up with a truly inspired, whimsical, fantasy wedding. 

The eye candy of the event would have to have been the creative décor by Poppies & Posies.  The pairing of seemingly contrasting heavy metal objects such as lead pipes and anvils with pretty and feminine florals, created a lively centerpiece certain to amuse and delight guests as well as get them smiling and chatting with each other. 

The understated stationery by Clean Wash Letterpress used simple designs to tie together the literal and metaphorical hardware connection.  Place cards with simple nail outlines and menus inscribed with a handsaw illustrated the couples desire for a down-to-earth shindig that was both thoughtful and complete. 

For our part, figuring out a menu that fit into a hardware theme wedding wound up being quite enjoyable.  I used one element you’d find in a hardware store in each dish, such as a fresh herb salad with “blowtorched” manchego toast, slow roasted salmon with “hacksawed” carrots, roasted cippolinis, and pumpkin vinaigrette, and seared lamb loin with stuffed squash blossoms and “painted” currant compote. 

Though a hardware theme wedding may not for everyone, this event showed even those of us who have done hundreds of weddings that nothing is out of the question.  What one client considers elegant another might find cliché, and what one might find strange another sees as enchanting.  The beauty of planning a wedding is that it is entirely up to the couple to determine how they want to remember their day.  

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

sunday brunch

this past weekend we did a bridal shower brunch for about 30 ladies in an upper east side apartment.   for passed hors d'oeuvres we served duck confit tostaditas, mini crabcakes with apple fennel relish & gribiche, grilled zucchini rolls with marinated goat cheese & prosciutto, spiced lamb loin with fava puree, mint yogurt on homemade pita chips, & grilled cheese with truffle, robiola, and tomato compote.  everything was a big hit including the following buffet. 

panzanella salad
toasted ciabatta, asparagus, shaved red onion, feta cheese, heirloom tomatoes, white balsamic

spice rubbed salmon
fshaved baby fennel, fuji apple vinaigrette

tortilla espanola (spanish omelette)
organic brown eggs, caramelized onion, yukon gold potato

beef tenderloin bruschetta
garlic crostinis, marinated tomato, crumbled gorgonzola, basil

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Beautiful Beets

Until about 2 years ago I would have told anyone who asked that the only vegetable I didn’t like was beets.  My mom still tells the story about how she tried to feed me beets (from a jar- yuck!) as a one year old, only to have me raspberry them at her and cover her and the wallpaper behind her in deep red spittle.  

Now that I have my own kids, I’m constantly trying to get them to try new things and we are frequently looking for new foods & recipes to try.  Fortunately, I have pretty adventurous eaters so one day when we went to the Court Street farmers market one fine Fall day looking for a new veggie & I boldly suggested we challenge ME to find a way to make beets that I would eat.  They thought this suggestion was an excellent idea!

 I figured my safest bet was to roast them, since I love pretty much anything roasted, which was a good call.  Roasting  (or grilling!) beets takes the bite out of them and mildly sweetens & mellows them.  If you still aren’t sure and are a vinegar freak like myself, you can also drizzle some red wine vinegar on them to effectively “pickle” them.  My family and I now eat beets on a regular basis, especially when we pick them from our own garden or can find baby beets at the farmers market. 

Over the last two years I’ve learned a few things about both growing and cooking beets, which I’d love to share. 
1.     Growing beets is incredibly easy.  You can plant them very early in the season, from seed, and they require very little care- just remember to thin them early once they sprout so there is room for the bulbs to grow.   
2.     The beet greens are delicious and have a very unique flavor.  Even my kids like them sautéed in just a little grape seed oil, salt & pepper.   Garlic if you’re feeling fancy.
3.     There’s no reason you can’t eat the skins of most beets.  Scrub them like you would a potato & roast. 
4.     If you don’t want the skins on your beets, wrap them in tin foil while roasting them, which simultaneously steams them.  Don’t open the foil until they’ve cooled & by then the skins will slip right off. 

Even if you think you don’t like them, give them a try this way and I bet you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Photo credit: Darwin Bell

Thursday, July 29, 2010

who loves french fries?

everybody loves french fries, especially me. me, my brother, sister all pretty much grew up on all american burger on merrick road in massapequa. pretty much anyone who has ever been there will swear by their french fries.  of all the pictures we've put on our website, the one i get the most comments on are the french fries (go figure!) so, in honor of a major craving i have right now for a fat cheese burger and homemade french fries with spicy mayo; which, incidentally is what I'm making for dinner, i decided to do a post on those delectable fried potatoes we amaericans cant do without. enjoy and we encourage you to comment and submit your favorites for a future post.

can anybody guess what kind i'll be having for dinner?

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Cooking as a competitive sport

You don’t need to have reality TV aspirations to engage in some good old cook-off fun.  We recently had a big extended-family weekend out at our country house where Michael & I had an unofficial guacamole competition.  All good-naturedly, of course, we bickered about who made “the best” guacamole and then proceeded to alternately make it every night for four nights in a row in effort to prove our cases. 
            Up to their ears in guacamole, the samplers were quizzed on which ingredients added up to the better dish.  Michael insists the spicier the better, with hot chili sauce and fresh, hot peppers.   With kids around I usually skip the heat but I like mine extra lime-y and garlicky.  Michael’s is usually pretty consistently smooth and I make mine lumpy and chunky.  The rest of our recipes are pretty much the same, but the most important thing we agree on is finding perfectly ripened Haas avocadoes.  It’s not even worth making it if they’re not, in my humble opinion.  If you’ve got those, some S/P & lime juice it’s hard to go wrong and almost anything goes. 
            The good news is that the testers got to eat a lot of really awesome guacamole.  And, truth be known, it wasn’t about competition at all, but about sharing good food and exchanging ideas about how to improve, change, mix-up & spice up our old ways.  For the next family event I’m thinking of challenging the brothers (Michael & Eric) to a BBQ challenge.  Pulled pork, Baby-back ribs, BBQed brisket…. Yum!    Cooking can be social, and such a pleasure, if you make it fun. 

Guacamole Recipe
3 ripe Hass Avocados
½  medium onion, diced
1 medium tomato, chopped
½ c fresh cilantro, chopped
1  Jalepeno pepper, seeded & diced
1 clove fresh garlic, minced or smashed
juice of 1 lime
salt & pepper

Mash the avocadoes.  Stir in the other ingredients using your taste as guide.  

Monday, July 26, 2010

How does your garden grow?

For me, there are few things finer in the category of food than picking a perfectly ripe fruit or vegetable off its plant and savoring it on the spot.  From discovering a trove of wild raspberries on a hike to planning and planting from seed, the moment of harvest still excites me the same.   
As a city dweller, it can be hard to stumble on truly wild anything, but no matter what your living situation, you CAN grow something!  Over the years I have come to realize that it doesn’t really matter whether you have a garden the size of a small house with a gaggle of crops and compost your every scrap, or if you’re coaxing a little Home Depot runt of a plant to life in a window box outside your studio apartment.  Either way, the result of harvesting your treasure is pure pleasure.   My family makes fun of me because I talk to my plants like they’re my children and talk about them like it too.  I don’t know if it makes them grow any better, but it does connect me to them, which keeps me from letting myself get lazy and not taking care of them properly. 
If you haven’t tried vegetable gardening yet, it’s not to late!  All of the better farmers markets in town still have seedlings.  I recommend tomatoes to start for lots of reasons... they are fun and easy to grow, they grow fast and usually give a generous harvest, their foliage smells amazing and also because it is a HOT HOT summer that makes tomatoes tremendously happy.   Splurge on a bigger seedling now that it’s mid-summer and you’ll be picking yours by the end of August.  
Tips for growing tomatoes:
1.  Don’t plant too early!  I had to replant my whole crop this year because we got a late frost & they all died.L   Mother’s Day is usually the rule for the NYC area. 
2.  “Petting” your tomatoes supposedly encourages growth.  You literally brush your hands up and down the foliage in long swooping strokes.  Next year I plan to do an experiment to see if it really works, but for now I continue to make a fool out of myself, just in case it does.
3.  Once the plants have taken off, you should trim back the “suckers,” or the stems that do not produce fruit.  This lets the water & nutrients get to the parts of the plant that need it most, not the parts that ‘suck’ the resources from them.   It is easy to tell the suckers once you take a good look.  The stems that produce tomatoes get fine little hairs all up and down them, followed by flowers.   The suckers have smooth stems and never flower.  Don’t trim them all because then your tomatoes could fry in the sun.  Let just enough suckers remain to give them some shade. 
4.  You don’t have to wait for the tomatoes to completely ripen on the vine… as long as they’re of size and starting to turn, they will ripen just fine on your counter (don’t put them in the refrigerator).  This is especially my advice if you have any sign of pests or wildlife also waiting for harvest time.  

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

recipe of the week: grilled ahi tuna with local grilled corn salad

when its as hot as its been these past few weeks, people want to eat light food that wont put them in a hot food coma.  bearing that in mind, my girlfriend was doing a photoshoot last week in my brooklyn backyard garden, so i decided to make a dish to add to the amazing decor. 

its a very simple, vibrant, tasty dish to prepare. 
sushi grade tuna cut into 6 oz. portions
fresh local corn
ripe avocado
heirloom cherry tomatoes
red onion
lime juice
extra virgin olive oil
grapeseed or canola oil

people have all sorts of ways they like to cook their corn. i prefer shucking the corn, boiling it in a pot of water, milk, butter, and old bay seasoning.  simmer for about 10 minutes then remove the corn and let the liquid drain off. once its not dripping any longer, put it on the grill and rotate until it has some nice charred color on it.  put it aside to cool.  rub a little grapeseed oil on the tuna to keep it from sticking to the grill, season it &  mark on the grill.  to get the nice crossmarks on it, turn the tuna 90 degrees once it has a nice grill mark on it. do both sides.  set tuna aside while you finish the salad. 
with a serrated bread knife stand the corn up and cut the kernels off into a bowl.  cut the tomatoes in quarters, halves, or leave them whole if you like.  slice the red onion as thin as possible. if you happen to have a japanese mandoline, it works perfectly.  otherwise you can dice, or chop it.  cut the avocado in half remove the pit cut in half again and remove the shell.  place the quarters on a cutting board so it is straight up and down. cut into 3 even slices, roll it onto its side, slice it again, then turn it sideways and cut into a small dice.  mix all your salad ingredients in a bowl with some fresh lime zest or lime juice, a little evoo and season as you like.  cut the tuna in whatever shape you like, place the salad on a plate with the tuna and VOILA!!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

kitchen love

sometimes half the fun of cooking is the kitchen you're cooking in. living in new york city can prove to be challenging when it comes to kitchen spaces. in a dream world, here are a few of our favorite kitchen styles & layouts.
{left image} big chill fridge {right image}chic housewife
{left image}zunigain interiors, {right imgage}apartment therapy

{left image}jubella, {right imgage}country living

Monday, May 31, 2010

Nothing is better than strolling around a New York City market in the sunshine, and then resting on a park bench to eat a box of fresh local strawberries!
Try this simple trick, cut strawberries and pour a bit of balsamic vinegar, this helps add a bit of depth. Then cut up some fresh mint leaves, throw in some blueberries and ENJOY

Our Lovely Spring Sweet-Pea Soup:

Sweet peas(frozen)
Water or veggie stock, ( boil Onions, leeks, carrots, garlic)
Small amount of tarragon
crème fraiche ( one pint)
Tarragon for crème fraiche.  

  1. Blanch sweet peas, soak in ice water, puree with cold veg stock or water, finish each half blender full with a tablespoon of crème fraiche.  Pass through the chinois!  Otherwise the texture is too grainy. And chill right away on ice bath.  Season with salt white pepper, and if needed add touch of honey or champagne vinegar to balance flavor

  1. Garnish with tarragon crème fraiche, fried leeks( julienne, store in water and let almost dry on sight, dust in flour and fry on sight.

Monday, May 24, 2010

This weekend was filled with lot of fun in the sunshine! The Hester Street Market was bustling with lots of people, great food, music, and tons of fun. This salad found on "she eats bears blog" would of been a lovely simple salad! Oranges in salads are so brilliant!

Hope you all had a great weekend! 
Here is a song to help kick start a great week:

Thursday, May 20, 2010


Rustic Beet Chips

To make the chips:
 Cook the beets until just tender
 (slice them really thin) 
Mix with vegetable oil and a bit of sea salt
 Cook at 300F for about 30 minutes
Have them as a great little snack, or add them to salads for a bit of pizzaz! 

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Well, its Wednesday once again!

Pretty Name Card Flower Vases

 If you have a bunch of little jam jars, 
or maybe even baby-food jars, 
why not turn them into great place card "stands" 
Its very easy, and inexpensive! 
All you need is jars, labels, a fun coloured pen, 
and some beautiful flowers, 
herbs could work as well! 
Feel free to send us you photos!

photo found on

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

TUESDAYs sneak peek of the week!

Tuesdays Peek of the Week:
Missy Photography. 

What a lovely company, Missy herself is such a genuine, beautiful, and warm person and her photographs show it! Her work has been featured in magazines, and blogs all over the web! 
We look forward to seeing more of her work!
Check out her website for more information! She also has a great blog!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Great spring/summer idea:
What a pretty way to have a picnic! Find some jam jars, make some great fresh salads, grab a blanket, bottle of wine, and a loaf of fresh crispy french bread, and find a great park! Who knows, maybe this could be the new way people have business meetings! (one can dream)

Friday, May 14, 2010

Kaegan Welch Featured in The New York Times, Off the Menu!

Check out our very own Kaegan Welch featured in The New York Times, Off the Menu:

LE PAIN QUOTIDIEN The Central Park location of this Belgian chain of bakery-restaurants sells sandwiches, snacks and sweets during the day; soon there will be vegetarian dinners from the chef, Kaegan Welch. (Opens May 15): Mineral Springs Pavilion at the Sheep Meadow, Central Park and West 69th Street. No phone yet.



We have a feeling this weekend is going to be sunny! So here are a few suggestion of great outdoor things todo! Let us know how your weekends went! 
There are lots of fun events happening around New York City this weekend. 
Such as...

Green Apple in Bloom Cycling Tour                   
6:00 p.m.8:00 p.m.
Meet at the Temperance Monument inside Tompkins Square Park and explore the Lower East…
Location: Tompkins Square Park, Manhattan
Cost: Free                       
Bryant Park Fencing
1:00 p.m.2:00 p.m.
Take a stab at the modern sport of fencing with masters from Manhattan Fencing…
Location: Fifth Avenue Terrace (in Bryant Park), Manhattan
Cost: Free

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Check our wedding inspiration photo shoot

Catering by Stuart and Welch 

Florals and Tablescape Design by poppies and posies floral and event design
Couture Gift and Dessert Table by Merci New York
Ring Pillow by Llubav
Cupcakes by tu-lu’s bakery
Hair Accessories by Untamed Petals

Photography by Oh, Darling! Photography
Clutch and Bird’s Nest Hair Accessory by Janelle Sing
Makeup Artist by Lauren Napier
Invitations and stationery by Lela New York
Bridesmaid Dress by 57 Grand
Bridesmaid Dress by twobirds bridesmaid
Rentals provided by Something Different Party Rental
Models: Jessica Warner, Tala Ashrafi, Matt Martin and Ben Roth