According to Charley Deleva, executive chef at St. Luke’s University Health Network, the days of veggie burgers that look more like “hockey pucks with birdseed” are long over. Vegetarian menus have come a long way, and now offer delicious alternatives to favorite dishes that even the most committed carnivores can’t resist! How does this impact your patients?
Inspirational Recipe Ideas
Being able to create healthier alternatives of your patients’ favorite meals can open up so many doors in terms of enhancing patient care. Patients are able to enjoy the same flavors and ingredients they miss from home while your staff ensures every meal is nutritionally balanced to support their greater health. Even traditionally unhealthier foods can be dressed up to become regulars on your menu, like vegan pizza made with almond cheese or spinach-tofu stuffed peppers, which is great when you’re trying to teach your patients new recipes they can make at home to maintain their progress on their own!
Importance Of Presentation
When feeding patients in health care settings, food service staffs often face challenges related to appetite. Older patients and those suffering from serious conditions are especially likely to resist a meal they aren’t sure they’re going to enjoy. This is where presentation comes into play. Like with young children, your recipes need to entice your patients who aren’t otherwise hungry to at least want to try something new. Your vegetarian plates should be light, colorful, attractive, and filled with an assortment of diverse ingredients to provide plenty of different options for your patients. The more excited your patient is to try something new, like a vegetarian meal, the more likely they are to finish it and order it again.
Locally Sourced Goodness
Adding more vegetarian options on your menu is a great way to reduce food waste in your kitchen and save money, as well as introduce your patients to fresher ingredients. If your facility supports it, a community garden is a great option for ensuring the availability of fresh, affordable, organic ingredients to use in your food service department. Otherwise, local farmers and markets are a great option as well. With the ability to use every scrap, you can even teach your patients how to stretch their budget. Show them how to make delicious, healthy chips out of seasoned potato skins, or a rich vegetable stock out of leftover vegetable peels and tops – the possibilities are endless!
Looking for another way to maximize your patients’ nutrient intake, and encourage them to try more vegetarian meals? Get in touch with our brilliant hospital software specialists at Vision Software today to learn more about our innovative food service applications. Call 629.777.8989, or fill in the free consultation form in the sidebar, to learn more about how Vision Software can positively impact the lives of the patients and visitors you service every day.