A Mountaineer Mini Kitchen Audit
So, this past week was quite an eventful one at that for this WVU ISPP Dietetic Intern. I had the pleasure of administering a mini kitchen audit to ensure the WVU Agricultural Sciences Annex Test Kitchen had the tools, equipment, and utensils for an upcoming event that week. Initially, this kitchen audit was intended to be administered by our program’s graduate student, who is a professional chef. But, when the audit was abandoned, I stepped in to do just a brief audit. Our kitchen holds roughly 25 students and has 4 kitchen units. Within each unit, there are 2 sinks, 1 microwave, 1 stove, and holds 4-6 people. Each unit is really broken into 2 stations and has a set amount of kitchen tools within it. In my mini audit, I was just ensuring that we would have enough knives, cutting boards, and utensils to complete a program for that week (which you will read about soon).
The number one concern that I was aware of, when running the mini audit, is that the knives in our kitchen are really dull, which could cause potential serious injury to beginner cooks. I also noticed that there really wasn’t a standard list of equipment in the kitchen, as a whole or at each unit. This could potentially be the reason why kitchens become unorganized at times. Another red flag I observed was the poor quality of a first aid kit that the kitchen had. They kept the kit in a drawer, unorganized, nothing in one container, and I think the components of this “kit” were outdated towards up to 7 years ago. These things are really important when teaching nutrition education in a kitchen setting, especially with students who have never stepped foot in WVU’s Test Kitchen. Hopefully, these problems will be addressed before we run our next programming in the kitchen.
I definitely think that our program should require students to have training of some extent in “how to run a kitchen audit”. I think it would be beneficial for future use and educate students the importance of knowing what’s in your kitchen so, you can identify any gaps or holes for future programming.