Eat like a Premier League footballer
- Credit: Adam Gooderham
He’s cooked for the ITFC first team, and stirred up a storm for Premier League players – and now you can try his dishes in your own home.
Adam Gooderham of Amg.Prep says he’s had an “unbelievable” amount of interest in his ready meal business since launching during lockdown – some weeks producing more than 500 dishes from his Suffolk base.
The venture came about as a direct response to the chef, who was Town’s first team personal cook, being furloughed in 2020, having worked for the football club firstly under Mick McCarthy eight years ago, returning under Paul Lambert’s reign.
“I fed the team and their manager on a daily basis,” Adam says. “I would go out with them on the coach, travel abroad. I was effectively joined at the hip with the squad, sorting out all their nutritional needs, then coronavirus hit and I got put on furlough. When restrictions were lifted for football they went back to training but it wasn’t safe enough for me to provide their food in the phase one return. A lot of the players started asking me then to cook for them privately. They wanted meals they could take home and prepare easily themselves. More and more came on board and I started to get busier and busier, then I got the go-ahead from Ipswich Town to offer what I do to the public. And it’s just snowballed.”
Adam took on a catering unit, and saw A&G Prep grow from 30 meals per week to an average of 580 – all freshly made across the weekend and delivered on a Monday around Suffolk or nationally via courier.
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The menu changes weekly to keep clients’ tastebuds interested, and every dish is weighed out, with nutrient values counted and printed on the label - although Adam’s keen to stress they’re not just for athletes and gym bunnies.
“Yes, I have got customers on board who want a healthy lifestyle, but there are a lot of people eating them for convenience too, because they’re really easy to use. The portion sizes are good. I think they beat a ready meal from a supermarket. Some do theirs at 300 to 400 calories, but then you might snack because you’re still hungry. Mine are around 500 calories but it’s a lot of food.”
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Adam rotates a menu of over 50 recipes, with seven dishes available each week, made using fresh ingredients, including meat from Edge Butchery and fish from Felixstowe Fishmongers.
“This week we’ve got braised steak, cooked in the oven for about eight hours in beef stock and red wine. That goes into the prep tub with mash, broccoli and carrots and a pot of the reduced gravy. There’s turkey lasagne. That’s made in the same way as a regular lasagne but with spinach added and, to keep the fat down, the topping is ricotta, Parmesan and a bit of mozzarella. It’s served with chargrilled peppers, courgettes and red onion.
“There’s a chargrilled salmon dish with nduja beans, the Mediterranean grilled vegetables again, and a salsa verde on top. And we’ve got things like barbecue chicken with sweet potato mash and charred corn on the cob.”
Adam’s branching out into desserts and treats too, launching energy balls, interesting crumbles (think apricot and blueberry) and American-style pancakes.
“I like to think we’ve got something for everyone,” he says.
The meals come in recyclable containers, 90% are freezer friendly, and they cook in just three to four minutes in the microwave.
New menus can be found on Adam’s social media account on Tuesdays, with ordering for the following Monday taking place via direct messaging, email or phone up until the Friday before.
“It’s a minimum of five meal packages, and the price goes down the more you buy so five mix and match meals are £40, but 10 is £70. I’d recommend ordering as soon as possible. Last week due to demand I had to stop taking orders by Wednesday – I've actually sold out the last three weeks running!
“It’s been a really positive experience. I’ve always wanted my own business and never had the courage to do it. This is something that’s happened at the right time for me and I’m only getting busier. More people are looking for proper, nutritionally-balance food without preservatives, and that’s exactly what I can offer.”