GUIDE TO COOKING AT BASE
Thank you for volunteering to cook at BASE!
if this is your first time, hopefully this guide will contain everything you need to know. If you have any questions you can always ask your host.
What is involved in brief:
Arrive at three pm.
Decide what to cook from donated veg and stock, and make shop list if needed.
We don’t use the urn for evenings as not many people have hot drinks. But check tea/coffee making stuff.
Check front café is tidy and ready fro use. .
Café opens doors at six pm and food is served at six thirty.
It is up to you and your host when to close but usually around nine pm.
You can always put a shout out for volunteers to help with washing the big pans etc. – use the big sink in store room.
Kitchen needs to be left clear of all food and swept and mopped.
Chairs and tables in the front café and events room need to be folded/stacked away ready for groups later in the week. Please stack tables and chairs in the events room in the end nearest the stock room – leaving access to the sofa and cupboards – thanks.
WHAT TO COOK – FOR HOW MANY
Aim to cook for 30-40 people.
There are a few recipe ideas
We aim to use what we’ve got so take a look at the veg donations and what’s in stock before deciding what to cook. But if you have a burning desire to cook a particular dish you are allowed to shop for ingredients!
We keep a lot of basic ingredients in the store room on the shelf rack. You can check the stock list kept on clipboard attached to the shelves. If containers are empty we may have refill stock containers on the high shelves, so check these before buying more.
The café collective are responsible for ordering stock from Essential – if there is something you notice has run out please make a note of it on the clipboard.
Stock teas are kept over the counter in the front kitchen. Stock coffee is kept in the office.
WHERE TO GET INGREDIENTS
We get donations of veg from Better Food on a Sunday – as long as there is a volunteer to collect it at around midday! Check the rota – kept by the cooking rotas at the counter. If you are cooking with a group you may also feel able to collect the veg. If on foot or bike take a large rucksack.
The Sweet Mart (which sells ‘Essential’ branded stuff) or other shops on or near St Marks road are convenient for other ingredients needed. You will need to buy bread for breakfasts. Check tea/coffee, sugar, margarine, oil and milk supplies before you go.
We have a number of brown compost bins kept in the yard and a small caddy for tea bags etc. in the front café. Some bins are for raw food scraps -these are used on the allotment. Others are for cooked waste. Please make sure there is a bin in place in the front café for peoples scraps.
RECYCLING AND BINS
At the end of the café on Sunday please put out the three recycling crates that live under the sink in the front café. They go by the front door. Compost bins need to be put out by the back gate on Robertson Road, along with the two black wheelie bins if its their week- they only get emptied fortnightly.(If unsure what are the neighbours doing?)
As tempting as it may be to keep left over food it rarely gets eaten and is a huge attraction to the mice so DON’T!!! Give it away at the end of a café or freeze it or compost it in the cooked food bins. Sometimes we have stocks of take away containers – kept on shelves in front café.
Please also give away surplus veg on a Sunday night. The only veg we sometimes keep in the storage room are onions and potatoes – in sealed containers. Any ingredients that need to be kept in the fridge must be completely covered and clearly labelled with exactly what it is and the date it was opened/refrigerated. Please remember that the kitchen may not be used until the following Saturday so some things may not be appropriate to keep.
FRIDGE AND FREEZER
Its worth checking what is in the two fridges before cooking. If you want to keep anything in the freezer please label it clearly including a date.
The host will deal with cashing up and accounts. We keep a fifty pound float in the cafe cash tin. You can get money for ingredients from the cash tin – please save receipts so we can work out the surplus made.
WHERE TO FIND:
tea towels – drawer in kitchen
cleaning materials – under sinks
mop bucket and broom, dustpan and brush – store room and under counter in front kitchen.
storage containers – spare containers may be found on the top shelves in the stock room or front kitchen.
It works much better if food is served by cooks and or hosts. This ensures we ask for a donation and helps to ensure there is food for everyone if its busy.
Please ask for a donation of £2.50 for an evening meal.
Drinks are 50p and puddings are £1/ 50p.
If folk cant pay encourage them to do a bit of washing up or help some other way if appropriate. Be sensitive!
WASHING UP and CLEARING AWAY and MICE!
Please make sure that everything is washed and put away at the end of the café. We have an ongoing battle with mice in the building so we need to ensure that everything is kept very clean. Crumbs need to be swept up, food kept in sealed containers and bin bags changed after every café.
HEALTH AND SAFETY BOOK
We have a white record book that we need to complete every time the kitchen is used. Please ensure you do so. It is kept in the front kitchen. There is also a Cleaning Record which must be completed before and after the kitchen is used. This ensures the Kitchen and Cafe stay clean and that Environmental health are happy bunnies.
FIRE POLICY/PROCEDURE Please make sure you are familiar with BASE’s fire policy and procedure. See attached.
Thank you for reading this guide – remember to chat to your host if anything is unclear.
We hope you enjoy cooking at BASE.