Happiness on the plates at Noosacare aged care

FOOD MATTERS: French chef Gilbert Roussett and Sandra Gilbert in the kitchen at Kabara (Cooroy).
FOOD MATTERS: French chef Gilbert Roussett and Sandra Gilbert in the kitchen at Kabara (Cooroy).

THE kitchen contractors are gone, a French chef is creating miracles among his pots and bain maries and happiness is on plates everywhere at Noosacare aged care facilities at Carramar (Tewantin) and Kabara (Cooroy).

And it's all because of celebrity foodie Maggie Beer who has a passion for better food for elders.

The kitchen revolution started when group care manager Sandra Gilbert, heard Maggie tell a conference in Tasmania there was a need to "put soul in menu design and pleasure back into food service".

Sandra told Seniors that she immediately made her aim the same as Maggie Beer:

"We wanted our residents to be experiencing joy through their palette."

"I returned to Noosacare to discuss what I had heard with our CEO, Megan D'Elton.

"I am a registered nurse and she is a CEO and between us we knew absolutely nothing about running a kitchen.

"Our first step was to complete our food safety supervisor certificate and hire staff who had a passion for food.

"Among them was French chef, Gilbert Roussett, who is very passionate about food.

"Chefs and staff from some of the best restaurants in Noosa applied.

They were attracted by the hours and no broken shifts.

"Imagine finishing at 6.30pm instead of 1am every day."

It was wonderful to know such a passionate group of people existed and were so on board with our ideas.

"Three months after the takeover of our kitchen I sat in the residents meeting and no complaints, only compliments.

"Instead of supply trucks coming from Brisbane, we now use local produce only.

"With the money we've saved, we've been able to put on more kitchen staff."

And Maggie Beer? "She's thrilled. We stay in contact."

Sandra Gilbert will speak on Nutrition and the Aged at the Slow Food Noosa Breakfast on Thursday, May 26, at Peppers Resort, Little Hastings St, Noosa. Members $24, non- members $29.

Topics:  aged care food noosacare seniors news

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