Food at Elm Bank Care Home
Meet our Head Chef, Harry Bagshaw
Hello. I am Harry and I joined Elm Bank as Head Chef in 2020. I support all members of the kitchen team to ensure they are confident in their roles, familiar with our menus and ready to deliver high quality, appetising meals and snacks on time every day. Our menus change every week and offer several options every meal time, including traditional meals and food styles from different cultures. Elm Bank holds a monthly residents’ meeting where we ask for feedback and ideas for future menus. I enjoying celebrating special occasions too so we bake a lot of birthday cakes. It is important that the kitchen team provides a balanced diet for all residents, to meet their nutritional needs and dietary requirements. We hold lots of food-themed activities to offer residents’ new food knowledge and encourage them to try something different. We have held cultural food events, cheese and wine tasting, cupcake making and much more. Food-related activities are very popular with residents.
It is essential that the people we support have access to healthy food at all times, so our fantastic catering team are always on hand to prepare tasty and nutritious cuisine. Our food is cooked to highest standard and with residents’ preferences always in mind. The importance of a balanced diet is never forgotten here, so we offer a varied menu that has something for everyone to enjoy, which you can sample below:
For residents that have difficulties in swallowing we modify the menu of the day so that it is a soft, palatable dish. To support our chefs in producing these dishes, our hospitality and Chef Academy organises theory and practical workshops. Working in partnership with Nutricia, our practical workshops involve all chefs and deputy managers learning about dysphagia and producing these modified menus. The chefs work with the chef trainer to prepare fork mashable and thick puree meals to the correct consistency, taste and presentation. The deputy managers can then ensure all modified menus served are presented correctly for our residents.
Attracting top chefs
Our chefs are recruited on the basis of an interview with the regional hospitality support team and the manager for the home. Selection also involves a practical element where potential cooks are asked to cook for and meet a panel of people living in the home. Chefs take their job extremely seriously and our annual 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'.