29th April

Tasty tarts and perfect pies, handmade in our nursing home in Surrey

Last week, two lovely ladies living here in at the Huntington and Langham Estate decided to get their hands dirty in the kitchen and have fun with a spot of baking! Molly has lived here for quite a while and Veronica has only recently moved in, so they haven’t known each other for too long, but they decided to join forces and have some fun together as they both fancied getting creative in the kitchen.

With the introduction of All Care Matters to Huntington House, following the success of Dementia Care Matters implemented from day one in our specialist dementia care home, Langham Court, we have made all sorts of changes to our residential and nursing home here in Surrey.

With All Care Matters, there’s such a strong focus on the wellbeing of the people living here; we believe everyone should be able to lead as independent a life as they would like to here in our home, so we have put all sorts of things in place to facilitate this, and it seems to be going down a storm. As part of that, we decided to build a kitchenette!

This isn’t the typical kind of kitchenette you see in most care homes where it’s used to make the odd cup of tea and slice of toast – this is a proper kitchenette and people living here are encouraged to make use of it whenever they fancy it, so everyone is able to cook and bake whenever they want to.

Although it’s not everyone’s idea of fun, the facility is there to be used at any time, with the team always on hand to help, of course. For people like Molly and Veronica – who are really quite independent, they just happen to be living with early memory loss – it’s the most amazing way for them to be engaged in meaningful activities and fully connect with how everyday life would have been for them in days gone by. It’s these small things like being able to bake that we take for granted.

In fact, Molly was a great baker at home and on quite a few occasions has mentioned that she missed being able to bake. Molly wanted to make jam tarts and said she used to make them every week for her family, so it was a pleasure seeing her in her element, baking for the first time in a while – and it was amazing tasting the finished tarts too!

Molly completely remembered how to make shortcrust pastry from scratch, along with all the exact quantities she needed – all we did was provide the ingredients. She spoke about making apple pie and custard as well as Eccles cakes, so fingers crossed we can make those very soon.

Whilst enjoying making pastry, Molly chatted about growing up in Lancashire, walking about how much she loved cooking for her husband and family. Seeing and hearing Molly during the couple of hours spent in the kitchen was just so wonderful, and everyone who wandered past the kitchenette commented on how great it was to see, smell and taste.

In addition to the delicious jam tarts, we also cooked mini chicken and leek pies! Veronica was keen to stop, chat and get involved, so she helped Molly by getting the pastry cutters out and filling the tins. Both the pies and tarts went down extremely well with everyone, and another baking session is planned for after Easter. Follow us on Facebook to see how they turn out!

We are thinking of starting a recipe book to record our successes – hopefully we won’t have to include any failures, although learning as we go is all part of the fun. Why don’t you pop in and see us at our lovely home here in Hindhead? It would be lovely to see you and you may even be lucky enough to have a sneak peek at our recipe book.

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