By Scott E. Kinney, Atlantic News Staff Writer
Atlantic News, Friday, June 22, 2007
[The following article is courtesy of Atlantic News.]
[Atlantic News Photo by Scott E. Kinney]
HAMPTON -- What's for dinner?
It is a question that Eileen Caulfield hears most every night, and admittedly, she loves it.
The owner of C and E Express Deli, Butcher & More has been offering a different fresh home-style dinner every night since she opened for business last July, all at a very reasonable price.
For a mere $5.99, Caulfield offers her customers macaroni and cheese, shepherd's pie, stuffed peppers and American chop suey, among a host of other dinners just like mom used to make. And Caulfield said she is open to suggestion when it comes to what's for dinner.
"Tell me what you like. If I can make it, I will. I wanted it to be like my kitchen at home," explained Caulfield. "I wanted it to have that 'homey' feeling."
C and E Express has been offering a variety of fresh sliced Boar's Head meats, hot dogs, steak tips and salads for hungry beach goers and locals alike. The shop also offers a host of sandwiches prepared per order on the customer's choice of bread.
"We slice everything to order," said Caulfield. "When you order your Italian we slice it to your order."
Caulfield has been fulfilling a need as well as a personal dream of her own. When she purchased a house in the area three years ago those seeking fresh meats had to leave the beach in order to find them. On a busy day, that could take several hours.
"Before I got here you had to leave the beach to get fresh cold cuts," she said. "There were no fresh steak tips unless you left the beach. And on a busy day it's a three-hour tour."
For Caulfield, owning a deli was the realization of dream.
"I love to cook," she said. "I used to love having luaus and pig roasts. I enjoy cooking so I wanted to do something in the food industry."
And though she didn't have a great deal of experience in running a deli, Caulfield said folks at the beach have been very welcoming to her business. "The only experience I had was that I know what a good sandwich is and I figured the rest would come," she said. "They (the customers) were very accepting of my inexperience. I've met a lot of good people here and a big part of this is being happy with your surroundings. There are really a lot of good people around here. I think people underestimate the closeness of this beach."
The deli also offers catering for your next event with party platters salads and a variety of prepared foods.
So the next time you're in the area stop in on Eileen and ask her the question on everyone's mind: What's for dinner?
C and E Express is open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and is located at 23 Ocean Boulevard, at the corner of "P" Street, on Hampton Beach. The deli can be reached by calling (603) 601-2547.