Lunch at Bulsink: No waste

Having a meeting at Bulsink soon? Tip: Plan it around lunchtime. At our company restaurant on the fourth floor, employees and guests are served a delicious lunch every day, with no food waste. Earlier, our chef Gülnur explained why she prefers the term ‘responsible’ over ‘healthy’ cooking. Today, she shares with us how she puts her no-waste philosophy into practice.

The meals you serve are virtually all no waste. How do you manage that?

“I try to incorporate leftovers into a soup. Or I use them to make a broth or smoothies. We use leftover bread to make French toast every now and then. One of the employees here has horses, so we also collect old bread for them. The horses are happy, they are happy and no food is wasted.”

“It’s also a question of shopping smart. That can be quite a challenge, because at Bulsink, no two days are ever the same. Sometimes you only know a day in advance, or on the day itself, whether additional guests will be joining us for a meal. We won’t send them away on an empty stomach, so instead I ask someone to jump on their bicycle and get something from Albert Heijn. And we also have a freezer and cold storage here. That makes it possible to respond quickly.”

“I buy in bulk from the Sligro wholesale store once a week and go to the market once during the week for local regional products. I also keep in close contact with local suppliers such as farmers. For instance, someone will call me to ask if I could use another batch of peppers.”

If we are understaffed in the kitchen, we use sustainable disposables made of palm leaf and sugar cane.

Do you prepare lunch yourself every day?

“I am there personally on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. I also have a team of people working with me who help decide on the menu, do the purchasing and organise everything from A to Z. We started out small and have grown dramatically over the past few years, just like Bulsink. We now have a fluctuating team of six to seven employees.”

“We try to have two of us there every day. But we also occasionally have staffing issues, like anyone in the hospitality industry. If we are understaffed in the kitchen, we use sustainable disposables made of palm leaf and sugarcane. That saves us two hours of washing up and everything can go on as usual. It’s a matter of changing the way you think.”

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