Tuesday April 16, 2024

Helsinki to serve Mediterranean food at schools, daycare centres

Published : 12 Mar 2024, 01:25

  DF Report
The menu of the Mediterranean theme week in schools and daycare centres includes these Greek-style chicken sticks. Photo: City of Helsinki.

Schools and daycare centres within Palvelukeskus Helsinki’s meal service will have a Mediterranean food theme from Tuesday to Thursday, said the City of Helsinki in a press release on Monday.

The theme week introduces tastes from France, Italy and Greece to the plates of the pupils and daycare children in the form of familiar dishes.

The menu includes carbonara lasagnette, bouillabaisse fish soup, Greek-style chicken sticks, and spinach balls with a mint-flavoured yoghurt sauce.

The theme week is topped off by a chocolate and orange dessert, inspired by French chocolate mousse.

The salad buffet will also include items typical of Mediterranean cuisine, such as fresh vegetables, fruits, and olives.

‘When planning the theme weeks, we wanted to select dishes which children and young people like, while ensuring that our professional kitchens can prepare them within their budget. This also allowed us to challenge ourselves to transform the recipes of classic dishes to suit institutional kitchens. Luckily, the Mediterranean region is extensive, and offers many ideas to choose from,’ said Petteri Hautamaa, planner of Palvelukeskus Helsinki.

The annual country theme is one of the highlights of the Palvelukeskus Helsinki meal service. Dishes in each country theme are planned, tested, instructed, and eventually prepared for over 60,000 students and daycare children in about 500 locations.

‘The planning and implementation of the country themes takes a lot of work, but also provides a nice change of pace for the kitchen staff as well as the eaters. It is important for us to be able to offer all pupils and daycare children tastes from other cuisines. The food theme encourages many schools and daycare centres to find out more about the countries through other activities as well,’ Hautamaa said.