De Brook Lodge, Cook, Linda Smith, has been recognised as ‘MasterChef of the Year’ at the Ideal Care Awards for her excellent attention to taste, presentation and creativity within her daily menu, alongside her mission to include flavours from across the globe to delight her residents.
Linda has worked at De Brook Lodge since 2011 and uses her wealth of knowledge cooking for her residents to create signature dishes, that her residents love such as classic casserole and Sunday dinners.
Linda is also well known for her handmade cakes, which are a huge hit on residents birthdays, anniversaries and other milestone celebrations.
The annual Ideal Care Awards were created in 2019 to recognise, reward and pay tribute to the Ideal Carehomes staff team who go above and beyond their roles.
After a callout for nominations, the group received a record breaking 1200 entries across 14 categories, ranging from Housekeeping Hero and Resident Outstanding Contribution to Home Manager and Home of the Year.
Internal judging days took place in July which determined the finalists who were invited to celebrate their achievements at a gala dinner at Casa Hotel in Chesterfield. The awards were hosted by Shaun Williamson, well- known for his role as Barry Evans in EastEnders.
Shaun entertained the finalists with stand-up comedy before announcing each category winner. He said, ‘It was a real honour to have been asked to join Ideal Carehomes at their awards ceremony. The stories of each finalist were incredibly moving, and it made every award extremely meaningful. Congratulations to the winners, you are all such a deserving bunch of people!’.
On the night, Judges commended Linda for taking the time to get to know each resident and their likes and dislikes, ensuring that her weekly menus offer something for everyone. The judges were also impressed with Linda’s use of themes and flavours in her cooking, often taking inspiration from dishes from across the globe.
Speaking after the awards, Linda said, ‘I am over the moon to have received this award! I love my job and it is my pleasure to cook hearty and delicious meals that I know our residents will love. I always make it a priority to take the time to chat with residents to find out what types of food they would like on the menu, however, I know my traditional Sunday lunches always go down a treat!’.
Home Manager, Rachel McIntosh, said, ‘We are extremely proud of Linda’s achievements. Linda lights up every room and her dedication to creating healthy and delicious food truly deserves to be recognised. Linda’s cooking always hits the spot and empty plates after lunch is our standard. Congratulations to Linda!’.
De Brook Lodge, operated by Ideal Carehomes, and is rated ‘GOOD’ by the CQC. The home is currently welcoming new residents for short and long term placements. For more information, call 0161 755 9750 or visit www.idealcarehomes.co.uk