The OSCARS Recognition of Excellence: Amrinder Singh
Updated: May 2, 2022
We are delighted to introduce Amrinder Singh, Head Chef at Fronditha Care’s Hippocrates facility in Mayfield NSW and recipient of The OSCARS Recognition of Excellence program.
OSCAR Care Group recognises Amrinder’s excellence & passion in taking the time to personally review his delicious & nutritious menus with his residents to ensure that they enjoy every meal.
Cooking for the elderly is very rewarding!
Amrinder chose his career path because he feels that “Cooking for the elderly is very rewarding. Being able to create a dish for a person that they really enjoy can change their day and their outlook.” Amrinder takes the time to sit with various residents each day, chatting over a cup of tea about their families & discussing menus & meal feedback. He knows them all by name & their favourite dishes!
While completing his Certificate III in Commercial Cookery, Amrinder worked up to the role of Chef at the famous Waterfront Restaurant in Port Melbourne. After moving to Newcastle, he joined the Fronditha Care Team and has been Head Chef at the Hippocrates facility for 4 years. He aspires to one day oversee all of Fronditha Care’s kitchen operations.
Amrinder credits his dedication and career success to the support from his wife Ebonnie Newby and his Fronditha Care mentors, Lisa Davies & Peter Thiveos.
“My heritage has influenced the food culture at Hippocrates”
Amrinder grew up in the Haryana region in North India. His farming family believe in fresh food sourced from their own farmland. Amrinder shares, “We eat what we grow. Food is a big part of my culture and I enjoy every ounce of it!” His love of cooking started with preparing chickpea curries with hot roti breads with both his mother and grandmother.
Amrinder’s background heritage has influenced the food culture at Fronditha Care’s Hippocrates facility.
In India, Amrinder celebrated many colourful festivals and each one featured a different food dish. “My heritage has influenced the food culture at Hippocrates” says Amrinder. “I introduced Armchair travel to India, where residents taste traditional curries, samosas, naan & chutney, served by our Lifestyle Staff dressed in Indian costume. They loved it!”
With the multicultural group of residents at Fronditha Care’s Hippocrates facility, Amrinder shares a small touch of his own cultural food to his menus by adding some herbs and spices, to the residents’ preferences. He also ensures that the Menu celebrates all the special cultural days for his diverse residents, including St Patrick’s Day, Greek Easter and Christmas.
“I very much believe we need to treat our consumers as though they were our own family by providing meals that satisfy their choices and preferences.”
Amrinder’s Tips for Aged Care Chefs
I strongly believe in the Aged Care sector. I implement Fronditha Care’s positive culture of inclusivity, respect, right of choices & our vast array of multicultural backgrounds and beliefs that are within our community.
Being Head Chef has given me the confidence to create new menu designs and provide high quality meals.
I believe I have brought professionalism to our kitchen team. We have a chat and a laugh throughout the day whilst getting our work completed to highest standards.
For consumers that have difficult allergies or dietary requirements you still need to ensure they are getting a nice and nutritious meal for them to enjoy.
Hard work is doing the job to the best of your ability every day, it means pushing yourself and striving harder for better results.
Fronditha FSP incorporating HACCP food safety principles give clear instructions to the food safety guidelines. The catering team & I have a thorough understanding & recognise the significance to follow all policies & procedures, enabling us to service & cater to our highly vulnerable clientele base with assurance & confidence.
North Indian Style Chickpea Curry
1/4 cup sunflower or canola oil
3/4 tsp cumin seeds
1 ½ onions finely chopped
4 cloves garlic crushed
1 tsp crushed ginger
2 small green chili pepper sliced
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp paprika powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp mild red chili powder or to taste
2 large tomatoes finely chopped
2 cans chickpeas rinsed and drained
1 1/4 tsp salt or to taste
1 tsp garam masala or chaat masala
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
2-3 tbsp fresh coriander leaves chopped
2 tbsp natural yoghurt or Greek yoghurt
1 tsp of ghee for extra flavour
You can add small diced potatoes or capsicum for extra flavour
Heat a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the oil, cumin seeds and onion and sauté for 7-8 minutes, until golden. If the mixture gets dry, add 1-2 tablespoons of water.
Add the garlic, ginger, and green chili pepper and sauté for another 2-3 minutes. Deglaze the pan with a tablespoon of water (if needed) and add the spice powders and give it a few stirs. Add the tomatoes and continue to stir for a minute. Mix in the chickpeas, salt, and 2 cups of water.
Raise the heat to high to bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium, cover and let cook for 25-30 minutes, until the chickpeas are very tender.
Uncover & raise the heat to high. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to slightly stir the chickpeas. Sauté for another 2-3 minutes to desired consistency. Taste and adjust salt and seasoning. Turn off the heat and add the garam masala or chaat masala, natural yoghurt, lemon juice, ghee and coriander leaves.
Traditionally we serve the chickpeas with rotti or rice and some side dishes like salads, raita (yoghurt) and fresh chillies.