Vendor Spotlight: Miss Rachel’s Pantry | Vegan Wedding catering and South Philly Cafe
I sat down with Rachel Klein to chat with her about her awesome vegan cafe and catering business- Miss Rachel’s Pantry. Her cafe is adorably decorated and located on such a beautiful little side street in South Philly- at 1938 S. Chadwick Street- close to 16th and Mifflin. I’ve photographed several weddings she’s catered and she is a delight to work with! Here is a short interview I did with her along with a peak into her charming storefront.
Tell me about how you first got started.
Well- it’s kind of crazy. Since I grew up vegetarian in a non-vegetarian home I was cooking all the time. And when I graduated college and I didn’t know what I wanted to do so I started cooking- cooking for families and delivering meals and at night I would make sandwiches and sell them at punk shows at the Unitarian Church where R5 productions held a lot of events. I’d make food for the bands and make extra money that way.
And I kind of just fell into wedding catering- somebody asked me to do their wedding and I did and it was intense- we cooked everything for 200 people on site and it was a 20 hour day for us.
I noticed there wasn’t vegan wedding catering so I focused on that and through word of mouth started building a client base.
We have really wonderful clients and I really like catering even more so than a lot of the other elements of running the business- for example running our little market cafe which looks more controllable is actually more challenging for me than catering a wedding.
What do you like about catering weddings as opposed to other events?
I really like the idea of carefully planning a menu that’s so specific to the couple that’s getting married. And you can make them happy and even make their friends who aren’t vegan happy and you get to be there for this important moment in their lives. It’s really special.
It’s also fun to then get repeat customers as the years go by- catering baby showers and other family events for our wedding clients.
What are a few of your favorite things to make?
I love to make our mac and cheese- it’s unreal. The cheese is cashew and coconut milk based and it’s so delicious – it makes me very happy. I like our potato knishes too- a knish is a Jewish pastry and we fill one with carmelized onions and mashed potatos and we have a pizza filled one.
I love serving seitan at weddings- it has a good texture and flavor but it’s made out of wheat. I like the flavors we can impart to it and it satisfies that meat craving for people who are omnivorous.
Check out her website here: http://www.missrachelspantry.com/and head over to her cafe for a delicious meal!