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Caterplus Care Chef of the Year Competition 2019

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Recently, Dalebrook had the great privilege of sponsoring the final of 2019’s Caterplus Care Chef of the Year Competition! A fantastic event with an eye-opening message of on-budget food having the potential to be delicious, linking in with Caterplus’ catering service which specialises in the care and retirement living sector. Elior UK’s subsidiary’s Caterplus specifically operating across different establishments such as residential care homes, assisted living, as well as; assisted living, extra care, independent living, specialist catering and charitable communities. So, what better way to showcase our products than to be a sponsor for such an amazing and life-changing business.

Taking place at the Luton Electrolux Kitchen, the internal competition invited all care chefs working within any UK Elior Business, rewarding brilliant creative talent in care catering. We saw seven finalists from different sites across the UK be tasked with creating an innovative two-course menu suitable for service in a care restaurant within a budget of just £2.25 a head! One of the courses had to be a level four texture modified puree dish, giving the chefs a chance to develop and raise their profiles within the industry.

Dalebrook were extremely proud to see these incredible dishes presented on our OMNI collection, allowing a simplistic yet professional look. It could not have been a more perfect event to present the collections versatility and detailed features making it easy for all ages, in particular the elderly and disabled, to enjoy a meal without any accidents or problems. It seemed Caterplus and our views were very similar in aim to support independence and promote dignity within the healthcare sector.

After a spirited Grand Final ‘Live Cook Off’ on the 24th of July, Gary Topping seemed to impress the judges the most with his ballotine of woodland chicken with fondant potato, crispy skin, radish, butternut squash puree, sautéed leeks and chestnut mushrooms with a stock rosemary reduction. Partnered with a summer fruits pudding served with Chantilly cream, Greek yoghurt and pistachio showing a creative flair- a perfect example of colourful, fresh texture modified food packed with flavour, winning him not only the prized trophy but also £200 and afternoon tea at The Ritz!

Darren Neal, executive chef at Caterplus said: “In its first year, the Caterplus Chef of the Year competition empowers our team to push boundaries of what is possible, proving that requirements such as texture modified foods can still be delicious, varied and colourful. A huge congratulations to Gary – his dishes were a brilliant example of our impressive, flexible and tailored care offering.”

The winner himself, chef manager at Barnaby House Thirteen Group exclaimed: “I’m delighted to be named Chef of the Year, especially after competing against such talented chefs. I really enjoy cooking in a care setting – each menu is a new opportunity to liven our customers’ taste buds and get them excited about food.”

It was the greatest pleasure to sponsor and we had a fantastic time, congratulations to all that took part, especially the winner!

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