Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Village kitchen ready to dish out delicacies

The Commonwealth Games venues may still be incomplete but athletes can at least be assured of a good meal during the XIX Commonwealth Games.

The organizing committee (OC) has finally managed to get Delaware North, caterers for the Games, to take charge of the Village kitchen.

With the soft launch of the Village scheduled for September 16, it has been a literal race against time to get the kitchen ready for Delaware to take over.

Now that the kitchen is operational , the Village is expected to become fully functional from the time of the soft launch, especially with around 700 foreign delegates from 71 countries scheduled to visit on September 15. The delegates from each participating Commonwealth Games Associations (CGAs) will stay at the Village and give feedback to their teams back home, said OC sources.

According to sources, the Village caterer had asked for a fortnight to set up their services , which at one point seemed doomed with last-minute constructions still on in the Village . However, after Delware took over the kitchen following a thorough inspection on Monday , Games operations finally began for the OC, said officials.
Jiji Thomson, special DG and in-charge of catering at the Games Village, said: ‘‘ The first meal will be served on September 16 at the Games Village as planned two years ago.”

The logistics are huge, as expected. From sourcing of food items to getting the kitchen equipment in place, it’s a long list. Interestingly, while certain raw items like mutton, chicken and fish are being sourced from India, a number of items are being specially flown in for the 8,000 athletes expected to participate in the Delhi Games 2010.

Ajay Grover, OCs consultant (catering), said: ‘‘ Since the Village will have multicuisines , specialized food items as well as chefs are being brought in for the purpose. While lamb is coming from New Zealand, bacon has been flown in from Holland and salmon from Norway. Condiments like peanut butter and maple syrup have been imported from Canada and elsewhere . Fruits such as peaches , apples, apricots and kiwis have also been flown in. With a new menu scheduled every day, the Village kitchen will be working round-the-clock , churning out 12,000 meals per service period.”

Grover said the menus have been created keeping in mind nutritional value and will be rotated on a six-day basis. Taj SATS is sourcing not only food items for Delaware but will also supply chefs, service personnel and kitchen/catering volunteers, said the organising committee officials. That's not all. Food safety checks will be done on the hour, every hour.

Around 65,000 litres of treated water will be used every day in the kitchen with even the floors being cleaned with potable water. This is to ensure that international standards are maintained, said Grover. Athletes are expected to start arriving from September 23, by which time the OC is hoping that the rest of the Village will also become fully operational.

International cuisines

Delaware North took over the kitchen on Monday

More than 1,200 employees will work in the kitchen, including

270 chefs from 6-8 specialists chefs from Malayasia and Africa

The supply chain is backed by Taj SATS, which will provide staff members and source food items like chicken, mutton, fish

Over 7tonne of mutton has already been shifted to the cold room in the kitchen. This will be marinated and put in deep freeze. Same will be done with other meat

800tonne of food will be cooked during the Games

13 tonne of raw rice consumed

Food (hot & cold) would be replenished according to the

food safety laws. For example, any baked item will have to be changed every 30mins

Menus will be offered on a 6-day menu cycle

Meat served will be Halal

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