Summer Newsletter 2016
Our new Summer Menu which begins on Monday 2 May 2016 (well Tuesday 3 May as the Monday is a Bank Holiday). You’ll see there’s lots of new lunch, dessert and tea-time ideas. Please let me have your feedback when you've sampled all the meals...
Our food labelling is changing to conform with the current guidelines. Wirral Trading Standards have agreed we can continue to keep our allergens highlighted in the yellow box. Strictly speaking we shouldn’t be doing this but for the children’s safety they have over-ridden this rule.
We can now boast that we are the first caterer who can provide additive free food for the whole family. We are in the process of devising frozen ready meals for the whole family.
Food Container Sizes
We are changing the amount of children some of our food containers feed. Children are eating more at nursery than they used to and some of my customers have said there’s not enough so therefore the following changes are being made. When you think, when I started out the largest container used to feed 25 children easily so children are definitely eating more today than they did 18 years ago.
- The 21 Portion container now feeds 20 children.
- The 14 Portion container now feeds 12 children.
- The 7 Portion container now feeds 6 children.
- The 4 Portion container now feeds 3 children.
The 2 container meals, i.e. Roast Dinners, Curry & Rice, remain the same sizes.
Portion size labels will continue to be displayed on the food containers to avoid any confusion
Working with Liverpool John Moores University
Over the last few months we have been working with Liverpool University’s Research and Development students to develop and gravy thickener with no bad e-numbers, no maltodextrin, no emulsifiers, no man-made preservatives, no MSG and no palm oil. Since I started feeding children I have dreamed of having the time to develop a thickener which has no baddies in – and it’s now become a reality.
Our new menu will therefore no longer contain any “baddies”
We no longer use Mass Produced Gravy Thickeners
These contain palm oil which is environmentally damaging and therefore we don’t like to use it. Maltodextrin – a food additive – which is highly processed and can be used as a food thickener or binding agent – it states it’s gluten free but some maltodextrin is derived from wheat products.
Flavour Enhancers - E621 – Monosodium Glutamate – some people are allergic to this
Colour (E150c) – this is a harmless food colouring – not all e-numbers are bad for you.
Emulsifier (E322) – this is usually derived from soybeans – many people are allergic to soya.
Sugar – why put sugar in a savoury ingredient? I don’t like to do this – if a savoury meal needs sweetening then we add grated carrot or parsnip with naturally occurring sugars.
Flavourings – we don’t know what flavourings as the label just says flavourings!
We no longer use Mass Produced Stock Cubes
These contain palm oil which is environmentally damaging and therefore we don’t like to use it. Stock cubes also contain Shea Butter and Sal Butter – these are widely used in the cosmetics industry and therefore I don’t like the idea of eating it!
Maltodextrin – a food additive – (see comments above).
Flavourings (see comments above).
Mass Produced Worcester Sauce is off the Menu
For years we used Lea & Perrins Worcester Sauce but then had to change when it was no longer gluten free. We changed to TigerTiger Worcester Sauce which was gluten free and we liked it. Unfortunately we can’t always buy this product and therefore we’ve decided to make our own.
The Nursery Kitchen now produces its own Gravy Thickeners and Flavourings with no hidden nasties!
We now produce our own gravy thickener, bouillon, stock cubes and Worcester sauce and we know exactly what’s in our food – nothing is hidden – all natural ingredients. We only use one E number which is a harmless food colouring – just to give the gravy a little more colour.
We have also been working hard with our butcher and have now developed a sausage, higher in meat content and they are now soya and gluten free. There are still preservatives in the sausages but you need them so they keep their colour. Let us know what you think of the sausages – we think they are delicious.
We still use Quorn as many people do like Quorn and a few nurseries have asked if we can put Quorn on the menu so we’ve put it on twice a month. If you would prefer not to have Quorn then please let us know and we’ll offer you an alternative. There do seem to be lots of firming agents but they don’t see to be harmful. Quorn products do contain egg white so anyone with an egg allergy must avoid this product.
We are spreading our wings and now deliver food to the whole of the UK. We have recently gained customers in London, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and West Sussex – it’s all rather exciting. We have had special cardboard boxes made and the box liners keep the food frozen for up to 48 hours. Our courier collects the food after 4pm and delivers by midday the following day.
We’re cooking for COOK!
In February we approached a company called COOK to see if they’d like our weaning food and they loved it! They cook adult frozen ready meals with the same ethos as The Nursery Kitchen. They have 90 shops throughout the UK and sell their foods in lots of Garden Centres, etc. I will be supplying Stage 3 Weaning Foods and they will be launching the range throughout their stores in July. Please visit their website www.cookfood.net to see all they do. This company is based in Sittingbourne in Kent, which is where I come from! It’s a small world.
If you do require any further information please phone and speak to Katy Elliott – 0151 345 0155.