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Summer is almost here, and our Spring/Summer menus are in full swing across our catering sites!

As local produce is abundant this time of year, we thought it would be an excellent time to champion our suppliers based and working within East Anglia. Barsby Produce Ltd, based in Kings Lynn, supply our fruit and vegetables and H G Blake Ltd, in Norwich, provides our fresh meat. We live in a farming community and know we can get the best British products right on our doorstep! Fresh, locally sourced products enable us to deliver a fantastic, high-quality catering service but also help to provide significant value to our clients while helping sustain the local supply chain. Potatoes are coming into season now so check out our beautiful Spanish Omelette recipe which we serve in our Norse Care Homes.

In our last blog we reported on our ‘Design a School Lunch’ competition where we invited children to get creative and come up with a main course that included all the main food groups and was eco-friendly. Addie’s winning ‘Super Six Veggie Curry’ was recreated by the kitchen team at her school and served to children on Mr Stroodles Eco Tableware to coincide with Earth Day.  Judging from the comments around the dining room, the curry was a big hit! “We welcomed this initiative at our school and liked the collaboration with Norse. It helped open conversations about school meal choices which gives children a voice. It also linked in with the national curriculum teaching children about the importance of active and healthy lifestyles.” Headteacher, Norfolk Primary School. The children have since requested it becomes a regular dish on their school lunch menu! If you would like to try the dish at home, you can find the recipe here!

As part of our ‘Food Glorious Food’ project in collaboration with Norse Care, our Cooks, Assistant Cooks and Mobiles recently took part in practical IDDSI training sessions at City College Norwich with our specialist partner Oak House Kitchen. The training sessions focussed on the importance of taste and creative ways to prepare and present texture modified food for residents who have difficulties in eating, drinking, and swallowing. Our collective aim is to ensure the glorious world of food and drink is fully inclusive to all residents in our care settings.

June and July can be hectic for our education Account Managers. They like to attend many parent’s evenings and new intake days to talk to children, meet parents and share information on our menus, local suppliers, and school food ethos. It is also an excellent opportunity to provide some menu tasters too! We find this helps new intake children know what to expect when they start school in September, which we believe is essential as although it is exciting, it can be daunting. So, if your school is holding a taster event, please pop over and say hello!

Here’s what some parents had to say at a recent taster event…

We continue to uphold our Flourish pledge of involving our young customers in our menu development. Flourish is a child and young people partnership strategy by Norfolk Children’s Services, working to make Norfolk the best place to grow up in. We attend many student councils and are currently gauging feedback on whether children would enjoy Mexican rice, falafels with a dip, a vanilla crunch bar and a new fruit and oat biscuit recipe on the next Autumn/Winter Menu. We look forward to reporting on their verdict!

Until next time,

Norse Catering