Chief Chef

Western & Southern food service manager Scott Buchanan

Illustration by Joel Kimmel

As food service manager for Western & Southern Financial Group, Scott Buchanan makes more than 2,000 meals a day in the corporate cafeteria.

What are some staples on the menu? We always have chilis, soups, and salads. We have “healthy choice” entrées, like grilled chicken and baked fish, and a second entrée like cheese coneys or barbeque ribs. The “power food” line has whole grains and high-protein foods.

How often do you add new items? The menu changes every day, but new items are added monthly. Associates can request an item and we’ll research it. Most items we cook, we’re going to make at least 500 servings, so we have to look at a recipe and make sure we can do that.

What sort of trends have you noticed? More spicy foods, grilled foods, and baked things versus fried foods. Things like roast pork, grilled chicken—common things, but they’re made from scratch so people enjoy them.

What’s the best-seller? Our Cajun rice soup. It starts with a chicken stock, then rice, okra, five kinds of peppers, onions, Cajun seasoning, and hot sauce. Lots of heat, but it’s really tasty. On days we serve it, we go through 45–50 gallons.

What’s the best part about the job? You see the same people day after day, so you get to build relationships with them. If someone likes a particular food, we can point them to try something new.

Originally published in the March 2013 issue.

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