Jul 08, 2024

New Winter Menu Warms Aged Care Residents’ Hearts

New Winter Menu Warms Aged Care Residents’ Hearts

Move over Maggie Beer! Residents at a Queensland aged care home are taking control of  their own food, choosing recipes, and menus, even forming their own tasting committee. 

It’s a highly collaborative process, and it’s empowering residents to have a greater say in  what they want to eat, right down to how the food is cooked.  

The pioneering tasting committee at Palm Lake Care has just selected recipes for a new  Winter menu, and sweet tooths among the 80 residents are relieved the popular sticky date  pudding with butterscotch sauce is a definite inclusion. 

The Deception Bay residents are working closely with their culinary team, led by respected  Chef Manager Amit Jyoti, to taste a wide selection of modern Australian meals and classic  favourites before carefully choosing the final recipes. 

And by all accounts the program of regular feedback and evaluation is driving the team to  exceed expectations. 

Residents Peter and Romany Shedden say the food is outstanding: “The chef always listens  to our feedback and the mild prawn curry is our absolute favourite.” 

Fellow resident, Marcia McIntosh, is pleased Chef Amit always asks for her feedback. 

“He goes above and beyond and knows if I am having a difficult day. A fresh sandwich full of  smoked salmon, capers, cream cheese and red onion, always lifts my spirits,” she said. 

“I tried his macaroni and cheese for the first time the other night – I haven’t had this since I  was a child. And wow, it brought back so many special memories. That’s the thing about the  food here … it creates a full sensory experience. My advice though, the braised beef shin  can’t be missed, it’s exquisite!” 

This year’s Winter menu features a satisfying choice of residents’ favourites – from hearty  soups to stews and mild curries – providing nourishment and comfort.  

Due to popular demand, the sticky date pudding with butterscotch sauce as well as perennial  favourite – ice cream (with or without topping) – are menu staples. 

The aroma of home cooking fills the dining room as tender meats, vegetables and spices  mix. 

In this homely atmosphere residents savour each bite, reminiscing about home-cooked  meals from the early days – they clearly enjoy the routine and the comfort of food they’ve  always known and loved. 

Aged and Community Care Providers Association (ACCPA) CEO Tom Symondson said  maintaining high food quality was essential to enhance the health and happiness of aged  care residents. 

“It’s wonderful to see how homes like Palm Lake Care are developing ways to involve  residents in the selection and evaluation of the food they’re served,” he said. 

“This laser focus on continual improvement shows the sector is dedicated to enhancing food  quality to ensure residents receive nutritious and enjoyable meals every day.

“We congratulate the culinary team and resident tasting committee who are working to tailor  the menu to individual tastes and needs.” 

Cooking has always been a joy for Chef Amit. As a child he enjoyed watching his mother  cook for the whole family, a pastime which grew to become a rewarding career. 

“Cooking is one thing, but love is the secret ingredient and that is what I think makes all the  difference. If you love it, it will show up on the plate,” said the ACCPA (Aged and Community  Care Providers Association) You are ACE! nominee. 

“Giving the residents responsibility and ownership that they are contributing to the menu and  they have a say empowers them – it does wonders. 

“We try a few new recipes and get the committee to taste it. There’s been a significant  improvement in food quality in the past five to six years.”

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    Move over indeed! This is a prime example of what many aged care providers do for their residents and to have someone that has received so many millions of government dollars (yep) to push a barrow of malnutrition in the sector is manipulative marketing. Well done Palm Lake Care for showing how you drive good quality dining.


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