Bilborough History Group

Our very own Senior Catering Consultant Craig went over to St. Martin’s Church in Bilborough to give a talk on The History of Traditional British Food. Here is a few things that he spoke to them about.

  • How things how changed since my childhood.
  • Being a Chef at Christmas.
  • Our Sunday Roast.
  • Fish & Chips.
  • The Full English Breakfast.
  • Are Cooking Shows and TV Chefs good for the Catering Industry ?
  • How do you like your steak ?
  • My Top 10 British desserts.

So we have selected one section for you to read about.

Being a Chef at Christmas:

Waking up to the smell of the turkey on Christmas day was one of my favourite childhood memories,But the same can’t be said 30 years on cooking Turkey for over 200 people on Christmas day. My Mum would be straight in to the kitchen once all our presents were opened. My Nanna would be back upstairs taking her hair net out and getting ready to come back down stairs to do the vegetables, and Dad well he would be just going through all the draws looking some batteries. A lot of things went off in the back ground while I was busy playing on Astro Wars and my little sister would be busy playing with her My Little Pony. Things in the background still continue now but in a different way.

A Chef’s Christmas would normally start around February. This would be the menu planning, menu costing and how many people we would love to cook for, always wanting to beat last year’s numbers. The Christmas trees and decorations within the hospitality trade will be up in the middle of November, so by the beginning of December we had enough of Cliff Richard and Bing Crosby. This would be the beginning of what is known in the trade as “Turkey & Tinsel” We would always be working a day in front, The mains would be plated up cold and placed in the oven, it would warm 108 plates up in 8 minutes.

On a normal evening in the Banqueting suite we would use in the region of 80-100 litres of Homemade Soup. There would then be a team of 4 Chefs plating around the 400 meals that needed going out within the 25minute mark. The only noise that could be heard would be me the Head Chef and the Operations manager encouraging each other to pick up the speed. By the time the last main course is cleared away, it would be time for the dessert’s to and find their way out to the guests. Lashings of Brandy Sauce over the Christmas puddings and you could always guarantee that one would come back with the following question from the waiter “ Chef please can I have one with Vanilla Ice-Cream ?”

Clean the kitchen down and a quick pint with the team and then tomorrow we would do it all again.

Christmas is a wonderful time but in the eyes of a Chef it is simply “GROUNDHOG DAY!”

One Comment on “Bilborough History Group

  1. Been there, not quite done that (as only a lowly porter) but felt the pressure. Wouldn’t have missed it for the world.

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