FoodService Director | April 2011

2011 Silver Plate Winners: Lora Gilbert, Dee Hardy, George Miller, Steve Sweeney and Bruce Thomas were honored by IFMA with the 2011 Silver Plate Award.

FSD of the Month

Cyndi Gloodt’s enthusiasm infects everyone around her. As general manager for Sodexo at Northern Trust Bank in Chicago, Gloodt’s ability to work with her clients and her drive and...

Steal this idea

When doing culinary training for our staff, we invite the local schools’ kitchen staff to attend as well. They tend to come to learn knife skills. Since we all are working on using more...
We started superfood tastings. We pick 13 items from fruits to grains. Every Wednesday my chefs prepare a healthy dish, and I pass out samples. We also give a handout with all the nutrition facts. We...
We found a solution to the afternoon “dead” period. From 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. we average 300 covers at one of our dining halls by offering afternoon tapas. We replace the expensive...
We hold workshops where we show people how to take advantage of all the nutritional and wellness-based programs in our operation. Topics covered include how to find nutritional information for the...
We held a Man vs. Food bimonthly event with our students. We have done an extreme wing competition, a colossal burger challenge and a giant burrito. The students get very excited when we hold these...
School nutrition has three shareholders: students, teachers/staff and parents. The first two are easier to reach. To get vital feedback from my parents I started a monthly nutrition coffee modeled...
We are running a series at our action station called "Not all burgers are beef.” We have introduced our own recipes for black bean, salmon, turkey and barley-mushroom burgers. We...
Each month I host a “My Cousin Vinnie” live cooking station at each of our four locations. With 6,500 employees it’s easy for people to recognize me but being in my chef...
We have a menu item called Grillin’ Fresca, where we bring out our deli slicer and put it in the grill station and slice fresh meats to order. For example, we do a top round of beef sliced...
There is not much money to do nutrition education and special promotions in school cafeterias. We have formed key relationships with local agencies and organizations to bring promotions into the...

Confessions

Karen Green, school nutrition director at Thomas County Schools, Thomasville, Ga., shows her Southern pride with her love of grits and Paula Deen.

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Asian noodle soups are a popular lunch option at YouTube’s San Bruno, Calif., campus, says Trent Page, the GM at Bon Appetit Management who runs the company’s three corporate dining venues. But Page noticed an increasing preference for customizable dishes and vegan preparations among the 1,000 customers he feeds daily. Inspired by a recent visit to Japan, he introduced tsukemen to the menu—a dish that features most of the traditional ramen ingredients (noodles, eggs and vegetable garnishes) served separately so diners can mix and match. “Separating the components makes it more customizable...

Ideas and Innovation
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For the last three years, we’ve hosted an event called Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner. We sponsor the local chapter of Future Farmers of America to raise the chickens, and we have to arrange all the transporting from farms to the distributor, which keeps the birds in a freezer until we’re ready. We build hype by having students vote on the proprietary spice blend they would like on the chicken. It helps the nutrition team get involved in the educational process and showcase local food purchasing.

Ideas and Innovation
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We are no longer short staffed, ever. On a given day, missing two team members from a team of 50 would leave us 96% staffed. The actual choice of wording places a positive emphasis on those that did come to serve our guests and patients. We no longer use the phrase “short staffed”; this is a game-changer when we are challenging ourselves as culture facilitators or leaders.

Ideas and Innovation
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To make safe food as accessible as possible for our guests with allergies, we are creating an allergen-friendly kitchen this summer. Students and community members will be able to use our mobile app to place orders for allergen-friendly food and pick them up at the central kitchen. The kitchen will also produce grab-and-go options that will be distributed across campus.

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