Military chefs train to cook up more vegan dishes

Watch: Military chefs have been at workshops to learn how to make delicious and healthy plant-based meals.

Military chefs have been getting cooking lessons in a bid to help them serve up more plant-based dishes.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) Vegan and Vegetarian Network organised a workshop at Worthy Down to give tri-service chefs an opportunity to widen their skill set and put their own spin on vegan meals. 

The aim of the day was to inspire those who teach chefs in the military that delicious and healthy vegan meals can be simple to create.

Jenny Chandler from Forward Food, who runs the workshops, told Forces News that vegan meals do not need to be an afterthought, they can be the main event too. 

"Often in a really busy kitchen when you've got absolutely masses of pressure and loads and loads of meals to deliver, the plant-based option is sometimes the last thing you think about. 

"What we're trying to do is maybe get them thinking that if the plant-based option is delicious it doesn't have to be for that tiny minority of people."

Military chefs vegan cooking training 2 110112 CREDIT BFBS
Militarty chefs learn how to serve up delicious and healthy plant-based meals.

The number of vegans in the military is increasing but still their choices can be limited. 

Staff Sergeant John Lewis, management accountant at 6th Division, said "generally it's poor but it is getting better".

"I've been a vegan for three years now and the difference between when I first started and now is massive.

"You wouldn't have seen events like this a few years ago, even a year ago.

"I'd like to be able to go into a cookhouse or into the mess and have a choice of more than one thing, and it not just be bland, plain food."

The MOD Vegan and Vegetarian Network hopes workshops, like this one, will improve and increase the availability of plant-based food.

For Sergeant John Bagudu, FSTS(L) Instructor Food Services Training Wing, the day had been a success: "I was surprised, obviously. I did enjoy it and would try it again.

"I'm fascinated with how everything tastes and I never thought it would be this nice."

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