Olympics to put British cuisine back on the menu

Feeding 10,500 athletes and millions of fans during the Olympics may be a mammoth task but London 2012 is hoping to seize the opportunity to also improve the reputation of British cuisine.

Fish and chips, pie and mash or a full English breakfast are hardly top of the list for an athlete looking to make it to the finish line, let alone win a medal.

However, the London Games organisers are not planning to turn their backs on the national cuisine during their moment in the spotlight.

Indeed, they are convinced there is something in the British recipe book to please even the fussiest of eaters.

Diverse international cuisine is part of the landscape of modern London. The six host London boroughs are home to communities from 195 of the 204 countries taking part in the Olympics, which start on Friday.

Therefore, alongside porridge and jacket potatoes, roast pork, South Asian curries, Chinese noodles, Italian pasta and pizzas, not forgetting salads, are all on the menu for spectators and athletes alike.

"British food is getting better and better all the time," said Jan Matthews, head of catering for the London Games organisers.

"We have food from every corner of the British Isles.

"We went out to make sure it was really a celebration of British food," she told BBC radio.

The majority of the ingredients will come from Britain, in line with the Games' sustainability commitments.

"We have gone to great lengths to find top quality, tasty food that celebrates the best of Britain," said London 2012 chief executive Paul Deighton.

Organisers believe they will serve up more than 14 million meals during the Games in 40 different locations, in what they claim is "the largest peacetime catering operation in the world".

Some 1.2 million of the meals will be eaten by the 10,500 competitors, coaches and officials living in the Olympic Village, where the rooms come without a kitchen.

The village's giant main dining hall, with its long tables and green plastic chairs, is the size of a football pitch and can accommodate up to 5,000 people.

There are different zones, including Best of Britain; Europe, the Americas and Mediterranean; Asian, and Afro-Caribbean, serving up specialities round the clock.

Halal, kosher, low salt or allergen-free products are also available.

The athletes are set to consume more than 330 tonnes of fruit and vegetables, 232 tonnes of potatoes, 100 tonnes of meat, 21 tonnes of cheese, 19 tonnes of eggs, 75,000 litres of milk and 25,000 loaves of bread.

Some athletes are happy with the range on offer, like the US hurdler Kerron Clement, a 2008 Beijing Games gold medallist in the 4x400 metres relay.

"Eating at the Olympic Village. Love the variety of food choices. African, Caribbean, halal cuisine, Indian and Asian and of course McDonald's," he wrote on his Twitter account.

As an official sponsor, the US fast food chain has four temporary restaurants on the Olympic Park in Stratford, east London, including one in the Athletes' Village.

McDonald's estimates it will serve up 50,000 Big Macs and 180,000 portions of fries at the Games, the majority at its huge outlet by the Olympic Stadium.

Visitors to the Olympic Park will have some 800 food stands to choose from, offering more than 150 different dishes.

It is not only Britain that will be promoting its cuisine during the Games -- the national hospitality houses set up by competing countries will be showcasing their own specialities.

The "Casa Italia" has the reputed chef Massimo Bottura in place, while Brazil has brought over Roberta Sudbrack, whose has the job of translating the nutritionists' specifications into dishes for its athletes at their training base in Crystal Palace, south London.

Meanwhile, Rene Redzepi, whose Noma establishment in Copenhagen has been voted the best in the world by Restaurant magazine for three years running, will open a special Olympic branch at Claridge's hotel for the Games.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Profiles of foreigners due to be executed in Indonesia
    Profiles of foreigners due to be executed in Indonesia

    Eight foreign drug convicts are set to be executed in Indonesia after losing all appeals for clemency. Here are brief profiles of the inmates, who include two from Australia, one each from Brazil and the Philippines, and four from Africa. Myuran Sukumaran A ringleader of the Bali Nine drugs smuggling syndicate, Sukumaran was born in London in 1981 and moved with his Sri Lankan family to Australia when he was a child. Enticed by the prospect of easy money, in 2005 he helped to organise a …

  • Pacquiao sees fist of God delivering win over Mayweather
    Pacquiao sees fist of God delivering win over Mayweather

    Filipino boxing hero Manny Pacquiao is confident he can beat American arch-rival Floyd Mayweather in Las Vegas on Saturday with the power of God, after abandoning a life he said was packed with sin condemning him to hell. Pacquiao is in top form both in mind and spirit after he traded his boozing, gambling and womanising ways for a devout life of prayer, his spiritual adviser, Jeric Soriano, told AFP in a recent Manila interview. Except the world got to him," Soriano said of Pacquiao's …

  • Indonesia says will not delay execution of Filipina convict
    Indonesia says will not delay execution of Filipina convict

    JAKARTA (Reuters) - The execution of a Filipina drug convict by an Indonesian firing squad will not be delayed despite last-minute appeals by the Philippine government, the attorney general said on Tuesday. Indonesian President Joko Widodo earlier met with a migrant workers' group to discuss the case of Mary Jane Veloso, who is one of nine people set to be executed within hours. (Reporting by Rosemarie Francisco in MANLIA and Gayatri Suroyo in JAKARTA; Editing by Clarence Fernandez) …

  • Nine face midnight firing squad in Indonesia, hopes for reprieve gone
    Nine face midnight firing squad in Indonesia, hopes for reprieve gone

    By Kanupriya Kapoor CILACAP, Indonesia (Reuters) - Nine drug traffickers held emotional farewell meetings with their families at an Indonesian prison on Tuesday, after Jakarta rejected last-ditch pleas from around the world for clemency and ordered their mass execution to proceed within hours. "I won't see him again," said Raji Sukumaran, the mother of an Australian who will go before a firing squad along with a fellow countryman and convicts from Nigeria, Brazil, the Philippines and …

  • Aquino appeals to Indonesia one more time to keep Filipina alive
    Aquino appeals to Indonesia one more time to keep Filipina alive

    Philippine President Benigno Aquino said he made one last appeal to the Indonesian government to spare a Filipina among nine prisoners set to be executed for drug trafficking on Tuesday as she could be a vital witness in prosecuting drug syndicates. It was Aquino's third personal appeal, after the Indonesian attorney general rejected the Philippines' request on Monday for a second judicial review of the case of Mary Jane Veloso, who her lawyers say merely served as an unknowing mule to drug …

  • Cheapest motorcycles in the Philippines under PhP 40,000
    Cheapest motorcycles in the Philippines under PhP 40,000

    Are you hunting for an affordable motorcycle which you can use for personal use or a family service vehicle? Carmudi PH presents to you some of the cheapest motorcycles in the Philippines today. These budget friendly motorbikes will surely not hurt your pockets, and you may even buy them on the spot instead of monthly […] The post Cheapest motorcycles in the Philippines under PhP 40,000 appeared first on Carmudi Philippines. …

  • Indonesia gears up for executions as families wail in grief
    Indonesia gears up for executions as families wail in grief

    Indonesia made final preparations Tuesday to execute eight foreigners by firing squad, as family members wailed in grief during last visits to their loved ones and ambulances carrying white coffins arrived at the drug convicts' prison. Relatives of Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, the Australian ringleaders of the so-called "Bali Nine" heroin trafficking group, arrived at Nusakambangan prison calling for mercy for their loved ones, with Sukumaran's sister collapsing in grief. They are among …

  • Labor Day heat index may heat feverish levels

    Temperatures could soar on Labor Day this Friday, with the "init factor" reaching the 40°C level in some areas of the country. Labor Day is a holiday in the Philippines, though many Filipinos are expected to go out to the streets to call for better working conditions. The so-called "init factor" or "heat index" gives the apparent temperature, taking into account the actual air temperature as well as other factors such as humidity. State weather agency PAGASA's Tuesday heat index indicated …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options