The beauty of Sunrise
To celebrate VfL’s Annual Award for Excellence in Vegetarian Care Catering, this month Amanda and I visited this year’s winner – Annika James, the Dining Services Coordinator at Sunrise Senior Living of Tettenhall in Wolverhampton.
Annika was first introduced to the catering industry through family at a young age, and is now in her seventh year working for Sunrise Senior Living. Her enthusiasm for care catering is obvious: she is a caring and passionate individual who takes great pride in her work and in meeting the needs of others. Through being a vegetarian herself, Annika understands the requirements of those living a meat-free life.
Menus include a varied selection of vegetarian and vegan options that are enjoyed by all residents on site. Annika’s food is a hit with meat-eaters and veggies alike, with residents proclaiming her food to be delicious, beautifully presented and nutritious.
Weekly meal plans are presented at the entrance of the dining area, showing residents a choice in food for each day. With hearty breakfasts, warming soups, delicious mains – and not forgetting tasty desserts – there’s a lot on offer for those eating here.
As Annika accompanied us around the building, residents were more than happy to talk to us about their dietary requirements. One guest exclaimed that Annika’s food was far too good to be cooked in a residential home so it must have bought pre-made!
In fact, that was the complete opposite. Everything provided is made on site by a team of dedicated cooks. Colour, texture, and taste are well considered when developing menus. No bland, grey food is to be found in these premises; but a plethora of seasonal options and nutritious dishes made fresh each day.
After presenting the award, Annika and her catering team prepared a tasty afternoon tea fit for the Queen. There was an array of meat-free culinary delights, which the staff and residents thoroughly enjoyed. It was a lovely experience, with residents discovering new foods such as vegan scones and fresh fruit tofu tarts. A new resident even proclaimed that the
dairy-free versions were as good as the ones she used to bake at home!
Because this was my first visit as VfL’s new Roving Chef, it was a great pleasure to meet such a caring and dedicated caterer whose passion really shone through. With an increase in the number of vegetarians and vegans in the UK, it is vital their needs are catered for, especially at a time when cooking for oneself may become a challenge.