The team at Gracewell of Newbury are celebrating after Head Chef, Adriano Carvalho, was crowned winner of the national cooking competition ‘Care Dine With Me 2018’, which searched for the best care home dining experience in the UK.
The judges were hugely impressed by Adriano’s passion and the level of attention paid to the health properties of individual ingredients, which he demonstrated by sharing the antioxidants and vitamin content of certain foods.
His enthusiasm for cooking was also praised, with the care he demonstrated for the residents and his awareness for residents individual dietary needs all being contributing factors to winning this award.
The judges also highlighted Gracewell of Newbury’s Memory Care Enrichment Programme for residents living with dementia and commented on how the dining team caters to their needs, using different crockery and different menus. This included picture menus, menus detailing ingredients and showing residents the dishes, to communicate menu choices and nutritional content, as well as cooking meals that evoke memories and experiences.
Gracewell of Newbury was also praised for its food focused activities held in the home, and the judges particularly enjoyed hearing from a relative about the personalised nutritional care both her parents received from the dedicated team.
For the final, Adriano served up a delicious pan-fried seabass fillet with paprika and mixed herbs. To accompany, the sides served were roasted sweet potatoes and pan-fried garlic and olive oil spinach with balsamic beetroot.
His inspiration came from the residents, who all love the seabass dish. Adriano said “you can see the happiness in their eyes every time this is an option on the menu. When I asked one of the residents why she likes this dish too much she said ‘This reminds me of my holiday by the sea’”. It is very colourful and also a good option for a natural soft diet because of its high level of nutrition.
This dish is an amazing source of vitamins, nutrients, antioxidants, minerals and fibres and helps to boost immune systems, strengthen bones and fight against cardiovascular disease among many other things.
Adriano Carvalho, Head Chef at Gracewell of Newbury, said:
“We are absolutely delighted to have won first prize in this prestigious competition. I love my job at Gracewell of Newbury as cooking for people has always been a passion of mine and I enjoy looking after people and being creative with food. This award is a testament to the hard work of everyone at the home and we’re looking forward to using the prize money to celebrate with residents and team members.”
Racquel Barreto, General Manager at Gracewell of Newbury, said:
“Food and the wider dining experience is a big part of our offering here at Gracewell of Newbury. Our dining team work so hard to ensure every meal time is enjoyable for residents and that they enjoy delicious, nutritious food, tailored to their needs and desires. It really is a whole home approach with the dining and care team working seamlessly together to deliver such high standards. A huge congratulations again to Adriano and the dining team, this result is hugely deserved.”