Ellie Cook of Anchor Trust’s Kirkley Lodge residential care home in Coulby Newham, Middlesbrough, is the best Care Cook in the UK.
The esteemed title was bestowed upon Ellie as she claimed victory at the exciting Grand Final of the National Association of Care Catering (NACC) Care Cook of the Year 2012 competition on 20 June 2012.
In a year that saw a record number of entries, Ellie triumphed over stiff competition to make it through to the Grand Final and scoop the coveted title. Judges were impressed by her winning two-course menu of lemon chicken and olive tagine, cous cous and roasted vegetable, followed by lemon cheesecake. They praised the great taste and visual appeal of the dish, together with Ellie’s obvious skill and creativity, and her excellent understanding of nutrition and catering for the care environment.
Now in its 13th year, the NACC Care Cook of the Year competition searches for the best Care Cook in the UK and rewards excellence in the specific and worthy field of care catering. It challenges care caterers to devise new and exciting recipes.
All entrants were required to create a nutritionally-balanced, innovative and delicious two-course menu, main and dessert, that is suitable for customers in a care environment, meets the set budget of £1.30 per person, and can be produced in just 90 minutes. This year extra emphasis was put on the vital area of nutrition and the cooks were asked to explain their ingredient choices as part of the judging criteria.
Karen Oliver, National Chair, NACC, comments: “My huge congratulations go to Ellie Cook, a worthy winner of the NACC Care Cook of the Year 2012. The skills, knowledge and dedication of chefs across care catering are showcased through the Care Cook of the Year competition. The high standards produced by all the entrants gives a true snapshot of the exceptional work and commitment to good nutrition and hydration care in this sector.
“The NACC nutrition guidelines and the How to Comply with CQC’s Outcome 5: Meeting Nutritional Needs toolkit support and guide chefs and managers, enabling them to provide high quality, nutritious meals that meet all our customers needs, seven days a week, 365 days a year. The NACC continues to support initiatives and competitions, such as the Care Cook competition, that play a vital role in safeguarding socially vulnerable people, ensuring the ongoing health and well being of our customers.
“The competition, the recipes and the high quality of work demonstrated by the competing care caterers should be the benchmark every establishment must aim for. We praise all the finalists and thank them for an incredible final and their ongoing commitment to maintaining excellence in care catering.”
As well as the esteemed title of NACC Care Cook of the Year 2012 and trophy, Ellie received a superb prize package including £500, plus a prestigious invitation to cook live at the NACC National Training & Development Forum in Blackpool on 19-21 September 2012, in front of fellow industry colleagues.
The NACC Care Cook of the Year 2012 competition is supported by the Worshipful Company of Cooks.
For more information on the NACC Care Cook of the Year competition visit http://www.thenacc.co.uk .