An MP for vegan tea

Posted by Amanda on 29/01/18 in Recipes, VfL News and Events

Last Friday, Plas Bryn Rhosyn Care Home in Neath welcomed local MP, Christina Rees, for a vegan afternoon tea. The occasion? To celebrate Plas Bryn Rhosyn becoming the newest member of V for Life's UK List – committed to catering well and ethically for older vegetarians and vegans. The Plas Bryn Rhosyn team tells us more and shares a popular vegan cake recipe. 

Q. Congratulations on putting on such a delicious-looking vegan spread! How did the food go down?

Stuart Davies (Home Manager): "Our visit went really well; it was nice to have Christina Rees attend our vegan afternoon party. Our head cook, Sarah Crimmins, fully embraced the ideas and provided a wide selection of vegan sandwiches and homemade vegan dips. Also three homemade vegan cakes – chocolate cake, ginger cake, and a carrot cake. Below is a recipe for the chocolate cake, which is Sarah’s own recipe."

Chocolate Cake


450ml cold water

½ tsp white wine vinegar

2 tsp natural vanilla extract

200ml vegetable oil

1 pinch salt

2 tsp baking powder

100g cocoa powder

300g caster sugar

400g self raising flour

  1. Use the all-in-one method.
  2. Bake at 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4 for 40 minutes.

Cream Cheese Frosting

250g vegan soft cheese

400g icing sugar

100g cocoa powder

Splash of soya milk

1 tsp vanilla essence

  1. Use the all-in-one method.

Says Stuart: "The residents thoroughly enjoyed it and are looking forward to Sarah’s next creations. Having gone through VfL's guides they have requested the Smokey Mediterranean Shepherd's Pie, and have challenged her to come up with a main meal of her own!"

A resident told us: “It was good to try something different, all the food was very tasty, I would never have thought so. It was nice to see our local MP, too. When are we doing this again? I can't wait!”

Sarah Crimmins (Head Cook): “It was really nice to bake something different within the home, it was nice to see the kitchen staff think more about the ingredients and their source, coming up with nice tasting ideas for sandwich fillers. They also enjoyed seeing how easy it was to make homemade dips, which they now want to do on a regular basis!”

Q. Can you tell us more about your decision to join the VfL UK List?

Stuart: "I hadn’t seen anything like VfL’s UK List before and thought it was a very useful resource for those who are looking at care homes/services either for themselves or for loved ones. I then immediately wanted to be a part of it. It helps highlight that we are different, that we’re not just a generic care home, showcasing what we can offer in a different way, emphasising that we will deliver care and support in line with their beliefs and principles. This is what’s important to me as a care home manager, and important for the home I manage. 

"Meals play a key role in the day-to-day activities of residents within care homes, with many planning their day around meals and also using meal times as a basis of knowing what time of day it is. Meals also play a major role in interaction with others. The ‘dining experience’ is one to be enjoyed and looked forward to. The same goes for the meals that are being produced and offered. With this in mind, we have looked at how we can cater for the ever-changing needs of our residents and how we can ensure that we can provide tasty, nutritious meals that meet our residents’ dietary preferences, and/or special requirements, i.e. modified diets. Providing the best all-round care with a holistic and person-centred approach is very important to me and the staff at Plas Bryn Rhosyn; and meal times, nutrition, and a wide range of tasty and diverse meals are key factor in this.

Providing care and support to vulnerable people is more than just the physical aspect that most imagine. It’s about being able to meet emotional, psychological, and social needs, too. It’s important that support and interventions are person-centred. Being able to accommodate people's preferences, choices, and lifestyles is vital to this.


29 January, 2018

Well done those cake look devine
Do you do take away x

K Barker
30 January, 2018

It’s great to read about this all too rare actual example of how the dietary and lifestyle choices of vegetarians and vegans should be respected by people caring for them. As a lifelong vegetarian I’m terrified that I may one day be unable to cook and shop for myself and be at the mercy of people with no understanding of how important being a vegetarian is to me.
Examples like this give me hope!
Keep up the great work, it is really appreciated.

16 May, 2018

Well done. A role model for other homes.

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