Award-winning Russian salad to feed healthcare workers

Jorge Berzosa poses with some of the tools of his trade.
Jorge Berzosa poses with some of the tools of his trade. / SUR
  • With bars and restaurants close to the hospitals shut down, healthcare and other essential workers have to rely on buying food from vending machines

The best Russian salad in Malaga for those who deserve it the most. Verum restaurant, thanks to its owner Jorge Berzosa and head chef Montse Juárez, has launched a campaign called Russian Salad for our Heroes, in collaboration with OMERG (Observatorio Malagueño de la Ensaladilla Rusa y el Gazpachuelo), an organisation formed to promote both traditional dishes in local restaurants.

Their mission is to send out strength, energy and, above all, plenty of encouragement and support by providing Russian salad and other foods to the healthcare workers, law enforcement officers and others who are fighting on the coronavirus front line.

Jorge Berzosa, whose 'ensaladilla rusa' was declared best in Spain in a recent competition, has committed to preparing around 10 kilos of the iconic potato salad every day.

He shares the work with his head chef Montse Juárez. "We make half each," he said.

The coordination and logistics of delivering this is down to Andrés Torres, president of OMERG, who will be organising deliveries so that they arrive at the changing over of shifts at the hospitals and health centres.

Many of the health workers say that all the nearby bars are closed so they have to take sandwiches or rely on food from hospital vending machines.

Having this contribution of food during their 24-hour days gives them energy and respite, and they have expressed their thanks for the tasty gesture.

Berzosa explained to SUR how the initiative was being carried out: "We make the Russian salad and we send it out to different hospitals for the health workers; for example today [Tuesday] we'll go to Vélez-Málaga; we've already distributed it in Carlos Haya, Clínico, Parque San Antonio and Quirón."