11 Considerations of Developing a Menu. AR 30-1 outlines what must be considered when
developing a menu. When developing your menus, you must take all into account to have a
successful menu, and ensure that the menu is within the dietary guidelines. They are: 1)
nutritional adequacy, 2) season of the year, 3) money, 4) supply factors, 5) soldier preference 6)
personnel, 7) equipment, 8) holidays, 9) soldier activity, 10) variety, and 11) low-calorie items.
a. After deciding upon a menu, you will develop a work plan around that menu. Begin your
work plan from the finished product; the time it is to be served. This is called backward planning
and will give you a good idea as to when to start your product. You will need to take everything
about that product into consideration, to include your skill level.
b. As your plan develops, you will have certain food items that can be prepped in advance
called Mise en Place. The amount of time your product will be stored will depend on what items
you can prep. Not all food items can be prepped in advance. For instance, you will not
necessarily prep breaded chicken a day in advance.
c. Once you have decided on a menu, and you have developed a work plan, you will need to
know how the food is to be presented. You learned earlier that sight is very important. How you
present your food has an effect on your diners. You must take into consideration color, texture,
cooking methods used, sauces and accompaniments, flavor, shape, temperature, and portion size.
Look at your plate as a picture frame. When all the food is plated, you should have "flow".
d. Your foods should be arranged close together to retain heat, but at the same time, they
must compliment each other. They should have a natural design and not look "dress right dress".
Also, food items should not look as if they were individually placed on the plate. This gives the
diner the impression that their food was handled too much. You will become familiar with such
fresh ingredients as eggs, milk, and cheeses, all of which figure into your menu and menu
2. Eggs. The Preparation and Characteristics of eggs. A whole egg is made up of a yolk,
white, and shell. A membrane lines the shell and forms an air cell at the large end of the egg.
a. The shell. The breed of the chicken determines the color of the shell. Shell color has no
effect on the quality, cooking properties, or nutritive value of the egg. Composed primarily of
calcium carbonate, the shell is very fragile. It is porous, which allows it to breathe. The porous
nature of the shell allows loss of moisture, even if broken.
b. The egg white. This is the food and moisture source for the embryo in a fertilized egg. It
accounts for 67 percent of the liquid weight of the egg. Egg white is made up of two parts. A
thick white surrounds the yolk. A thinner, more liquid part is between the membrane and the
thicker white. Albumin protein is the major component of the white. It also contains sulfur.
c. The egg yolk. The yolk is held centered in the egg by the Chalaza. They are the two
white strands that are present when an egg is broken. The yolk is the unfertilized embryo in the
egg. Yellow in color, the depth of the color will vary with the feed of the hen. It is high in fat
and protein, and contains iron.