Vegetarians dining out will expect work surfaces and chopping boards, utensils and all other kitchen equipment and facilities to be either kept separate from those used for non-vegetarian food preparation, or cleaned thoroughly before vegetarian food preparation.
The Vegetarian Society recommends that caterers keep a separate set of utensils for the preparation and serving of vegetarian meals.
Fat used to roast vegetables or make Yorkshire pudding should be of non-animal origin.
Roasting vegetables such as potatoes and parsnips must not be cooked together with meat if they are to be offered to vegetarians. Sometimes meat flavours can be tasted by vegetarians even if the meat is just cooked in the same oven. This is because meat odours during cooking permeate the roasting vegetables. Therefore it is preferable for separate ovens to be used for roasting potatoes and other vegetables if that is an option.
Frying and deep fat frying
Chips deep fried in oil that fish or meat has been deep fried in is not acceptable to vegetarians. Separate deep fat fryers should be used or the oil changed.
Fat filtration in large scale catering operations
Cleaning pipes need to be free from cross contamination of meat products.
Frying on hot plates
Care should be taken when frying on hot plates so that vegetarian products do not come into contact with meat products if space permits use of separate hot plates is preferable and ensure no fat from meat can splatter onto non-meat products.
Grills and BBQ's
Care should be taken when grilling or barbequing so that vegetarian products do not come into contact with meat products if space permits use a separate grill/barbeque if possible. If not ensure there are distinctive sides to the grill/b-b-q for vegetarian products and ensure no fat from meat can splatter onto non-meat products.
Ensure separate woks are used for frying it is not sufficient to wipe out the wok after stir frying prawns for example. Separate woks should be used for non-meat products.
Basting spoons/tongs/draining spoons/fish slices separate cooking utensils to be used for cooking non-meat products colour coding handles green is a good reminder.
Industry guidelines already exist for the use of separate boards to prepare separate ingredients.
Separate cooking utensils should be used for non-meat products colour coding the handles in green is a good way of remembering to use the correct utensil.
Manage your buffet
Other guests can be guilty of accidentally mixing up serving utensils, even if they were correctly put out at the start of a service. Keep checking your buffet to make sure that its as welcoming to all guests, even vegetarians during and at the end of service as well as at the start.
Separate serving spoons should be used for non-meat products i.e. a separate spoon/tong is needed for serving roast potatoes cooked in vegetable oil and separate oven to the spoon used for serving roast potatoes cooked in animal fat or oven used for meat.
Separate serving plates should be used, for example, a tray of cut sandwiches should not contain meat/fish sandwiches and non-meat sandwiches.
Food Service disposable gloves
When using gloves to pick up food, gloves should always been changed when moving from meat/fish to non-meat products.