Ridgemount care home Chef shortlisted for Anchor Chef of the Year
Damien Bailey, Chef at Anchor’s Ridgemount care home in Surrey has made it to the final of Anchor’s Chef of the Year 2018 competition.
Although Damien has only been with Anchor since last September, he is brimming with confidence as he has cooked for some very special guests in his career as a Chef.
"Before Anchor, I spent 10 years working at Headley Court, an army military hospital in Leatherhead with 350 beds. One day, I was given the shock of my life when the head of the Officer’s Mess asked me to put on a special menu for a royal visitor – imagine my surprise when I found out it was to be The Queen herself!
"Clearly I had to pull out all the stops, so I prepared a menu of goats cheese, pigeon wrapped in cabbage and an oreo dessert, which I heard from one of her equerries went down very well."
Now wokring for Anchor, Damien loves experimenting with new dishes for the older people living at Ridgement care home in Banstead, Surrey.
Damien said: "I have just finished drawing up the new Autumn menu which involves me cooking quite a lot of fish dishes which are very popular, a couple of vegetarian options and even a taster menu. I really like it when residents give me suggestions, I always give their requests my best shot."
Away from the kitchen, Damien used to play a lot of rugby and now keeps fit by doing a lot of cycling – he regularly does a 50 mile round trip on his days off.
Kyle Ingram, Ridgemount’s home manager said: "I am so pleased that Damien has entered the Chef of the Year competition. It was a pleasure to co-nominate him and I am sure he will do well and bring the trophy home to Banstead with his great menu and outstanding cooking."
Anchor’s Chef of the Year 2018 competition will feature a two course cook-off, held at University of Birmingham on Tues 4 September, and will be judged by Michelin star chef Tom Shepherd.