zm.blackmilkmag.com
New recipes

Do We Really Need a ‘World’s Best Female Chef’ Award?

Do We Really Need a ‘World’s Best Female Chef’ Award?


We are searching data for your request:

Forums and discussions:
Manuals and reference books:
Data from registers:
Wait the end of the search in all databases.
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.


Chef Ana Roš was named best female chef by the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list; is that a good thing?

Gender imbalances in the kitchen exist, but does this award help or hinder women?

This week, the global culinary curators behind the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list announced the winner of this year’s Best Female Chef award, Chef Ana Roš, of Hiša Franko in Slovenia. Although chef Roš said she is humbled to have received the award — telling Billionaire that the award will put Slovenia on the gastronomic map — many question if the award is necessary at all. Eater published an opinion piece calling the award, “not only absurd, but insulting.”

Others are also calling for the abolishing of the award, especially since there is no equally puzzling Best Male Chef award to match:

The “World’s 50 Best” committee explained their reasoning behind the existence of the award in a statement:

“Some believe the existence of the Best Female Chef Award program — under The World’s 50 Best Restaurants umbrella — fuels and exacerbates everyday sexism,” the statement reads. “As the organizers of these awards, we strongly refute that. We believe the existence of this gender-specific category actually helps to redress an imbalance, while simultaneously recognizing that the world of restaurant kitchens remains a male-dominated sphere.”

We spoke with last year’s Best Female Chef award recipient, Dominique Crenn of Atelier Crenn, in December, who strongly believes that sexist undertones and overtones still exist in the industry, and that the media perpetuates these issues. “There are a lot of chefs in my industry that are women [and] they are amazing, but the media doesn’t pay attention to them,” Crenn said. “You pick up a magazine and the new best chef is usually a man.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


A ‘blank-slate approach’ is helping Geisinger Health prepare for the future

Operators are finally seeing a bit of light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And after more than a year of taking things day by day and rolling with seemingly endless changes, many are craving a return to “normal.”

But at Geisinger Health in Danville, Pa., Senior Director of Foodservice Steve Cerullo doesn’t want his team to be thinking about 2019. Instead, they’re planning menus for 2022.

“We’ve erased our mindset of ‘normal’ being everything we did before COVID,” Cerullo says. “I’ve made clear to our managers that the message here is not, when can we get back to blah blah blah. It’s, what can we do next, what can we add to the menu, what can we change up?”

Like many operations, regional healthcare provider Geisinger is still reckoning with COVID-19 challenges, battling supply constraints and struggling to fill some open positions. Yet leadership is taking a forward-looking stance, spurring the team not only to create menus months ahead but also reimagine food stations, streamline cross-campus offerings, launch new initiatives like an ordering app and, overall, look to the future rather than lament the past.

Cerullo has spearheaded what he calls “a blank-slate approach,” charging the team to put COVID aside for a moment and examine how they would reimagine operations if they were building Geisinger’s foodservice from the ground up.

That thought exercise inspired many changes, all of which began with one essential task: paring down Geisinger’s bloated list of SKUs.

“Our database had built up over time because of things like catering and social events, and as a result, I swear at one point we had 60 different bread options in our system,” says Executive Chef Matthew Cervay. “I mean, we want people to have options of a whole wheat bun, white sliced bread, Italian, etc., but we don’t need 60. SKU rationalization had to happen.”

Rethinking what’s ahead

By systematically combing through ingredients, the Geisinger team reduced its SKUs from 3,000 to about 2,000. But they had gotten a taste of streamlining and were ready for more.

“Across Pennsylvania, we have all of these different locations, and each one had a very different menu,” Cerullo says. “We had always said, wouldn’t that be great if we could do the same menu everywhere? But these ideas like, Meatloaf is more popular in Danville than in Wilkes-Barre, had taken hold and stuck around.”

No longer. Instead, Cerullo and Cervay led a project to standardize the menus across campuses and create a more curated “recipe toolbox” for site managers to select from.

“Before, site managers could really pick pretty much anything from our recipes, but the fact is, sourcing something for only one or two sites isn’t the best way to do things,” Cervay says. “We needed a more mandated approach for the baseline menus, and then if a larger site wants to add something on, they can choose from what’s now a smaller pool of recipes. In a system as big as ours, that makes things a lot simpler.”

This switch helped stabilize purchases and inventory, allowing the team to coordinate ingredients across patient and retail recipes. They also shortened the menu cycle from three weeks to two.

And for Cerullo, revisiting menus and ingredients also meant refocusing on key priorities for Geisinger as a whole.

“There’s hyperfocus on providing quality meals at affordable prices,” he says. “At Geisinger, we want to make the healthy choice the easy choice. There’s a stigma that healthy means expensive for the customer and time-consuming for the operation. We needed to get back to offering healthy choices at a great value.”

So Cervay and his team set to work making value meals for just $5: ancho-roasted chicken with brown rice and fajita vegetables shrimp in a soy-ginger-garlic marinade served with a vegetable medley and pineapple rice pilaf and blackened tilapia with an herb polenta and fresh green beans.

Photo courtesy of Geisinger Health

“With the loss of retail traffic we’ve had, it is changing our business,” Cervay says. “People are packing lunch or working from home. So we need to tempt people to come in.”

Cervay’s raw food costs on these value meals are as high as 50% however, he says it’s an investment well worth it.

“It’s important for us from a philosophical position to make good on promoting health,” he explains. “It’s one of our ways of getting back to our core values. At the end of the day, what do we really need to focus on? Feeding our patients and our staff in the way they need.”

Striking a balance

For other operators looking to change focus to what will hopefully be a post-COVID world, Cervay recommends a careful balance so as not to overwhelm team members.

“On the leadership level, it’s definitely comforting to have a plan,” Cervay says. “But you have to keep in mind that your front line is focusing on today’s service, today’s supply issues, today’s staffing. We have the luxury of looking ahead, while they’re necessarily stuck in the moment.”

Still, Cerullo says, after more than a year of pandemic-focused thinking, many staffers would likely welcome talking at least a bit about post-COVID operations.

“The difference is seeing the future as a wide-open possibility to make changes, rather than just getting back to where we were before,” Cerullo adds. “Now our conversations are about, what else can we optimize? Could we maybe start delivering food outside to best serve our staff? It feels great to have those conversations and get back to those values.”


Watch the video: Meet Asias Best Female Chef: DeAille Tam