From Big Ben to Chow Mein



From Big Ben to Chow Mein










An article about a project aimed at identifying popular dishes from different migrant cultures for inclusion into menus of Hospitals and nursing homes.


Soon, hospitals and nursing homes willprovide food to everyone's taste
The kitchen was in a flurry. It was lunchtime and, out-
side, a dining hall, packed with hungry people, was
waiting. Surprisingly, the four Macedonian cooks
looked as though they were enjoying themselves.
As a pleasant aroma steadily wafted into the dining hall,
one elderly Australian man, George, sniffed: "It smells good,
but what I'd really like for lunch is pie'n'chips."
But good old Aussie tucker wasn't on the menu at the
Macedonian Orthodox Church Hall in Broadmeadow, NSW.
The special of the day was Macedonian fare.
This lunch was one of the last in nearly two years of test-
ing the acceptability of ethnic meals across a range of ethnic
groups for a project titled: "From Big Ben to Chow Mein".
Aimed at improving the quality of diet available to the mi-
grant aged, the project will result in an ethnic menu and spe-
cial diet kit for use in hospitals, nursing homes and Meals
on Wheels.
The need for such a kit was realised four years ago by the
Migrant Health Unit in Newcastle. An assumption that
"everybody likes Australian food" and a general lack of
understanding about ethnic foods means migrants have
little choice at dinner time, according to Dr Judy Brand, Re-
gional Migrant Health Advisor.
Finding the most popular meals for Polish, Greek, Ital-
ian, Chinese, Macedonian and Vietnamese people was the
first step. A large group from each community was asked
about their favourite foods, and a dietitian then selected five
meals from each one. Foods were chosen not only for their
popularity, but also for simplicity, economy and short prep-
aration time. — MELISSA JONES


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