Tasty food of good quality, in sufficient quantity, served on time and with the least wastage – these can well be the mission statements of catering. Ever since S. Srinivasan joined as ‘Kitchen Supervisor’ of Sevalaya , these qualities reflect in Sevalaya Kitchen.
“I am happy to work for children and senior citizens through my contribution in kitchen” – Srinivasan says proudly. Whenever a sudden requirement comes for additional food, here is the man who nods with a smile and ensures that food is cooked and ready within the time.
When he was asked to prepare a grand lunch on 18th September for 2500 persons and that too with the same regular work force to accomplish it, he smiled and said:, “Yes, when 2000 and more children are happy to taste the food, the efforts behind it is a joyful experience! What else do I need!”
A master of food craft and employee management skills, astonishingly, Srinivasan has no experience in these areas. He just retired from Southern Railways, after a 30 year-long career, in the stores/materials management team at the Engineering department .
About his interest in cooking food and managing the kitchen , he says, “My grandfather Krishnamachari used to prepare sweets and snacks and sell them in the Madras High Court Complex. Catering is my family passion that runs through a few generations”.
He has dabbled in cooking as a part time vocation, occasionally cooking for marriages and earned a good reputation. He has a happy family with two daughters, both married and settled and one son, with gainful employment. Ever since joining Sevalaya kitchen on 10th April 2014, Srinivasan has given tasty proof of his expertise in making sweets such as Laddu, Jangry, Mysorepa – practically anything except Bengali sweets.
All kitchen staff fondly calls him “appa” (meaning father) as he settles with love, tenderness and care occasional disputes among the women staff working in kitchen and motivates them with positive strokes all the time.
Srinivasan is very proud of the Sevalaya kitchen which he says is large and well equipped, with modern gadgets, alternate power for ovens like firewood for steam boilers, LPG gas, Bio-mass stoves, bio-gas and above all plenty of provisions and vegetables! His wish list is modest: ” If I had a Chapati maker and a Dosa maker, I could have served some variety of tiffin to the children and the senior citizens! Could that be possible?” We could see enormous amount of anxiety in his eyes!