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Aged Care Skills for Cooks and Chefs

Maggie Beer Foundation Online Training Modules

Older people deserve the very best food…Enticing, delicious meals that uplift and bring joy.

There is currently limited training courses available in Australia through the TAFE or specialist training providers to meet the needs of cooks and chefs in Aged Care. To fill this critical gap, the Maggie Beer Foundation has designed an online training program into 11 short, manageable Modules to ensure all cooks and chefs, from all aged care providers across the country, can access essential training that improves the food experiences for older Australians.

“The roles of cooks and chefs in Aged Care is extremely demanding and highly responsible. Their main responsibility is the preparation of flavoursome, safe, wholesome food for the often-vulnerable people in their care” – Maggie Beer.

The online training modules, the first education program of its type in the world, have been developed by the Maggie Beer Foundation in partnership with Altura Learning and William Angliss Institute. Each Module is 30-minutes, video-based and accessible online- feature Maggie Beer and some of Australia’s leading Aged Care chefs and experts in food, nutrition, and the dining experience.

INDIVIDUALS
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ORGANISATIONS
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The Modules

Module 1 - Creating Tempting Finger Food and Sandwiches


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Morgan Pankhurst – Accredited Practising Dietitian
Peter Morgan-Jones – Executive Chef, HammondCare
Amanda Orchard – Chef, Maggie Beer Foundation

Module Description:
For some people, a full-sized traditional meal can be a daunting sight, often resulting in a meal that’s pushed away and ignored. Introducing alternative meal options that are wholesome, tasty, interesting and appealing to the senses could make all the difference to the way a person approaches their mealtimes.

Delicious, aromatic bites, such as flavourful finger foods and small sandwiches are an ideal way to support a person’s independence and self esteem at the dining table, particularly those who might have cognitive issues or physical conditions that affect their dexterity. Finger food options throughout the day can also assist in an increase in protein and essential nutrients and aid in the prevention of malnutrition.

In this module:

  • We talk about the importance of high quality finger food for nutrition and independence.
  • We discuss how smaller bite sized portions can increase food intake, and improve meal enjoyment
  • And we share recipes and ideas for wholesome delicious finger foods and sandwiches, packed full of flavour.

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 2 - Cooking Techniques with Impact


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Simon Bryant – Chef

Module Description:
All dishes can really shine when prepared with the right cooking technique, especially with those cheaper cuts of meat. You can bring out the hidden charms of different foods when you know how to cook them best, maximising the flavour, aroma and mouth feel for your diners.

It’s also important to know that different ingredients lend themselves to a wide variety of different cooking applications. Understanding how and when to apply these is essential for bringing out the best flavours, aromas and textures and will also ensure that your ingredients retain maximum nutritional value. Creating wonderful aromas is absolutely vital to the enjoyment of food, we will discuss how you can bring those aromas right into the dining rooms for your residents. In this module, we’ll describe the most common cooking techniques, demonstrate various cooking methods for meats and vegetables that maximise flavour, aroma and texture and you’ll be provided with recipes, tips and techniques to enhance your cooking.

In this module:

  • Simon Bryant joins Maggie to talk about cooking techniques
  • We demonstrate how to combine those techniques with the right ingredients to enhance and maximise aroma and flavour
  • And we share recipes and tips that will make the most of the dining experience for your residents

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 3 - Cook Fresh. Chill. Enhance.


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Leo Gstrein – National Executive Chef, Compass Group Australia

Module Description:
The Cook Chill process is a controlled system of advanced food preparation designed to provide more flexibility and efficiency in food service. A huge variety of foods, including meats, vegetables, soups and even desserts can be cooked from fresh, then rapidly – or blast – chilled. Key to the success of Cook Chill is close monitoring through the storage, transportation and delivery process until service, resulting in uniformity of flavours and textures.

However, production efficiency shouldn’t be at the expense of satisfying levels of flavour, texture and aroma. Maximise the process and make the most of all opportunities, including regeneration, enhancing and food presentation, by adding extra garnishes, boosting flavour, colour, texture and ensuring that the aromas of home cooking permeate throughout the dining room. This will result in increased food consumption and a more satisfactory dining experience.

Staff involvement is also essential to the success when preparing Cook Chill meals for service. Being equipped with the knowledge to enhance meals empowers staff to be creative in the kitchen and proud of their finishing and presentation skills.

In this module:

  • We discuss the Cook Chill approach to food preparation
  • We talk about the importance of the Regeneration process
  • And we demonstrate simple and effective ways to enhance Cook Chill meals for maximum aroma and flavour

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 4 - Feed the Eyes: Food Presentation


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Amanda Orchard – Chef, Maggie Beer Foundation

Module Description:
Food presentation is an essential aspect of meal enjoyment. From the colours, contrasts and textures to how the ingredients have been arranged on the plate – a person’s first impression of a meal will have a huge impact on the amount of food they consume and whether they enjoy the experience of eating it.

Food presentation skills enable staff to plate and present any meal in the most appealing and appetising way possible. It is important to present every meal beautifully throughout the day and to make an extra effort to lift the presentation of texture modified meals. In serving meals that feed the eye as well as all the senses you will be boosting meal satisfaction, increasing food consumption and nutrition intake, resulting in happier and healthier residents.

In this module:

  • We discuss the importance of food presentation and how integral it is to the enjoyment of a meal
  • We demonstrate presentation ideas and techniques for regular and texture modified dishes
  • And we share strategies to enable staff to improve their food presentation skills

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 5 - Keep it Fresh: Kitchen Gardens


Maggie Beer introduces:
Amanda Orchard – Chef, Maggie Beer Foundation
with Cath Manuel – Therapeutic Horticulturist, Soil to Supper

Module Description:
Whether you have small pots, planter boxes, raised garden beds or a full-sized garden bed, a kitchen garden can make all the difference to the food you prepare, and it’s one of the most effective ways to “keep it fresh”.

A kitchen garden provides so much more than simply a space to grow herbs, vegetables and fruits for cooking. Chefs are able to harvest fresh produce as needed and residents will enjoy the vibrant, just picked textures, flavours, colours and aromas that are so full of nutrients. For those residents who can join in, there are physical and cognitive health benefits too… simply being outside, watching things grow or taking part in a gardening activity can help improve a person’s vitality, meal enjoyment and food intake.

In this module:

  • We talk about the positive benefits a kitchen garden can bring to residents and clients
  • We show you how to get the best results from your kitchen garden
  • And we share recipes and ideas using fresh garden produce

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 6 - Delivering Higher Protein All Day


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Morgan Pankhurst – Accredited Practising Dietitian
Sandra Luliano – Nutritionist

Module Description:
When it comes to nutrition in aged care, protein is the main game in town. It may be surprising, but older people actually require more protein in their diet than younger people. But the majority of older people just don’t get enough and this can lead to malnutrition.

This module will show how Chefs and cooks can help residents get enough protein without the need for supplements. It is quite possible to increase the amount of protein in the diet by simply fortifying the ingredients and increasing the protein levels of the foods that they already consume and enjoy. Supercharging your recipes will not only make a huge difference to a person’s wellbeing, but will make every mouthful count.

In this module:

  • We explain why protein is so important
  • We demonstrate how you can make simple changes to your recipes to increase protein intake
  • And we share delicious, high protein recipes that are full-flavoured and enticing

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 7 - Rethinking Texture Modified Foods


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Peter Morgan-Jones – Executive Chef, HammondCare
Amanda Orchard – Chef, Maggie Beer Foundation

Module Description:
As we age, our bodies undergo changes that can sometimes affect our ability to swallow food and fluids. Changes can include a decrease in saliva production, the loss of teeth, shrinking gums, loss of sensory perception, weakened jaw muscles, and changes to the strength of the tongue. The medical term for this condition is dysphagia and it occurs when the muscles and nerves that control the mouth or the tongue, or the swallow itself, become weak or uncoordinated. It can cause coughing, gagging or even choking whilst consuming food or drink. People with dysphagia may require prescribed changes to the texture of their food and fluids following assessment. But it doesn’t mean that their meals should be less interesting than any other meal.

To support a person’s independence and maintain their dignity, it’s important that every bite is appealing, aromatic, delicious and tasty, using nutritious, colourful ingredients. With a little creativity, you can prepare sensational meals that residents and clients will consume with renewed enthusiasm. Texture modified foods could be a special art of Aged Care cooks and chefs.

In this module:

  • We discuss the impact of chewing and swallowing difficulties
  • We look at the importance of food pleasure and dignity
  • And we share recipes and ideas for texture modified foods that are enticing and full of flavour

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 8 - Food Culture of First Australians


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Christian Hampson – Cultural Landscape Designer, Yerrabingin
Nicole Turner – Nutritionist

Module Description:
This special module is directed at the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, whilst being highly relevant across all homes. We will explore the ‘Native Larder’ from seed to table and discuss the flavours, aromas and cultural significance of traditional bush foods, which have provided sustenance for centuries. We also discuss the relationship that First Australians had with the land, rivers and seas, and how their knowledge of sustainable practices and respect for the environment ensured a continuous supply of food. There is a growing interest in the benefits and uses of Australian native ingredients as they become more accessible… and there are many ways we can include these foods in everyday cooking that will bring pleasure, especially to our Aboriginal and Torres Strait elders.

In this module:

  • We explore ways to source, grow and use native plants
  • We discuss the intergenerational importance of traditional food culture and memories
  • And we share recipes using native ingredients that are full of flavour and aroma

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 9 - Embracing Food from Diverse Cultures


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Ved Prasad – Executive Chef Manager, Gallipoli Home
Sam Tsang – Quality Catering Lead/Chef, ANHF (Australian Nursing Home Foundation)

Module Description:
One of the more challenging but potentially most satisfying aspects of being a Cook or Chef in Aged Care is cultural diversity. Australia is one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world and the nation has benefitted from the traditions, skills and crafts that migrants brought with them from their homelands. As our ageing population grows, care organisations will be providing increasingly for food preferences of CALD residents.

This requires learning about the beliefs, preferences and tastes around food, ingredients, cooking styles and cultural traditions. It even includes understanding how different cultures present their foods, what they eat at different times of the day and differences in how they chew and swallow their foods. Cooks, Chefs and kitchen staff can make a huge difference in creating solutions to suit individual palates and beliefs.

In this module:

  • We explore how organisations can manage the nutritional needs and food preferences of culturally diverse people
  • We discuss how we can support them to observe their unique traditions
  • And we share healthy recipes full of amazing flavours

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 10 - Improving the Dining Experience


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Polly Whitworth, Dementia Centre Consultant, HammondCare

Module Description:
Our dining experience is made up of more than just the food we eat. The sights, smells, sounds, environment and company we keep all have an impact on our dining pleasure.

This module explores ways to provide the best dining experience for your residents by encouraging you to put yourself in their shoes. What are some of your personal preferences that make for a great dining experience? Making some simple changes can have a great impact.

In this module:

  • We discuss the importance of the whole dining experience to a resident’s enjoyment of their meal
  • We explore ways to inspire your team to deliver the best dining experience for their residents
  • And we share tips on how to create a dining atmosphere that encourages a person’s appetite and supports their independence

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

Module 11 - Maximising Flavour: Engage the Senses


Featuring Maggie Beer with:
Simon Bryant – Chef
Peter Kenny – Chairman, Maggie Beer Foundation

Module Description:
The enjoyment of the foods we eat can have a direct effect on how much we eat. If we really don’t like the flavour of a food or if it is just tasteless we are inclined to eat a lot less of it. This is really important in Aged Care where we are trying hard to encourage our residents to eat more or all of their food. Of course enjoyment is determined by our ability to smell and taste the food. Sadly our ability to smell and taste declines as we get older, so it’s important to consider how to amplify the flavours and aromas of meals to take your dishes to the next level!

You can achieve this by using clever cooking techniques and re-thinking your approach to the ingredients you use. Enhance a person’s experience at meal times with a few simple and creative ideas which will re-engage their senses, invigorate their appetites and ultimately increase food consumption for residents and clients.

In this module:

  • We discuss the important role that smell and taste plays on food
  • We describe how our sensory perception can diminish as we age and how this impacts on our enjoyment of food
  • And we’ll provide some useful tips on boosting aroma and flavour

FOR INDIVIDUALS – Start learning today

FOR ORGANISATIONS – Provide access for your employees

WHAT’S INCLUDED

Each module is accompanied by a comprehensive Information Sheet full of practical hints, key definitions, beautiful recipe cards and an invitation to an online forum where you can learn from others and share your successes.

PRICING

All Modules are available for purchase by both individuals and organisations (on behalf of their employees) with prices beginning from $43.95 (inc GST) per module per learner.

INDIVIDUALS
Start learning today

ORGANISATIONS
Provide access for your employees

REQUEST A QUOTE TO PROVIDE ACCESS FOR YOUR EMPLOYEES