Food at Collingtree Park Care Home
Meet our Head Chef, Tamara Mano
Hello. I am Tamara, Head Chef at Collingtree Park. I joined the Catering Team here in 2018 as a Kitchen Assistant and have worked my way up to my current position.
In my earlier career I was a Maths and Physics Teacher in Greece and Albania, but I have always loved cooking for myself and developed my career in food since coming to the UK where I have completed catering qualifications.
Collingtree Park feels like a big family and I cook with love as I would for my own family. I research recipes online and try them at home to get them just right for our residents. I like cooking main courses, making them attractive, hearty and full of flavour. I am already working on menus for the next season.
I can adapt any of my recipes for people with allergies or swallowing difficulties, so they can enjoy the same flavours as everyone else.
When I am not at work I enjoy music and travelling - I go to gigs and concerts and like spending time in warm countries.
Food and Nutrition at Collingtree Park
Our catering team at Collingtree Park consists of experienced chefs who offer only the best in nutritional and delicious food, which reflects the individual tastes and dietary needs of people living at the home. They also love creating cakes for birthdays and other treats for special occasions to make those events that little bit sweeter. Sometimes we’ll even throw on the barbecue and cook up a storm in the summer heat. To get a flavour of the menu we serve here, please see the examples below:
For residents who have difficulties swallowing, we modify the menu of the day so that the dishes are more palatable for them. To support our chefs in producing these dishes, our hospitality team and our Chef Academy organise theory and practical workshops. The chefs work with the chef trainer to prepare tasty, modified meals safely and according to IDDSI frame work. This encourages residents to eat and enjoy their food. All our chefs have been trained in IDDSI food descriptors.
Attracting top chefs
Our chefs are recruited on the basis of an interview with the regional hospitality support team and the manager of the home. Selection also involves a practical element, where potential chefs are asked to cook for and meet a panel of people living in the home. Chefs take their job extremely seriously and the annual Barchester Chef Competition sees our chefs battle it out in regional heats and then at a national final for the accolade of 'Barchester's Chef of the Year'.