It’s another Friday at Media-X and as has become tradition here, wonderful smells are wafting from the office kitchen.  Most software companies don’t boast a fully functioning kitchen complete with an oven, stove and even a BBQ during the summer months.  But if it’s one thing that all the employees here share in common with each other, it’s a love of eating good food.

The Friday lunch started out years ago as simply employees wanting to celebrate the end of the week with some hamburgers cooked on a crude grill.  As the company has grown in the past few years, and moved into an office with more facilities, the lunch has evolved with it.  On a few occasions it has reached near epic proportions, celebrating holidays and staff milestones ranging from birthdays, to baby showers to even a wedding.

Some of the more memorable lunches have included traditional French Canadian feast complete with stew and tortiere, a Thanksgiving turkey bake, and an Oktoberfest sausage cook-up with soup served out of a pumpkin.  It becomes fairly obvious that there are a few self-designated food nuts in the office. as a result, the staff are continually subjected to the torture of having to try and work while the smell of bacon or fresh bread is wafting through the cubicles.

While the skill level of the cooks at Media-X ranges from those who fancy themselves born again versions of Gordon Ramsey, to those who might be more likely to burn water than boil it, everybody contributes once a month to the meal.  Once or twice a year, teams are assigned captains who then are in charge of choosing 3 or 4 sous-chefs to form a balanced team.  Of course, sometimes everybody is simply too busy to cook and the office is then treated to the fine creations of the born again Chef Ramsey’s at the local pizzeria or shawarma shop.

So now you have the history of our wonderful TGIFL tradition and you`re likely wondering either: “Why am I still reading this?” or “What did they eat this week?”  This week we opted to have the comforting favourite of shivering shepherds in the rainy hills of Scotland, shepherd’s pie.

The comforting favourite of shivering shepherds in the rainy hills of Scotland, Shepherd`s Pie.

I did a little bit of research into the history of this dish (by research, I mean I Googled it).  It turns out the dish came to be in the U.K. around the 1500s when the potato crop was first introduced.  I would imagine that it came down to the fact that people were sick of having to eat their meat and potatoes separate, and thus combined them into a type of hybrid, superdish (I would also imagine they used these corporate buzzword to try and sell the dish to their shepherd mates).

Variations of this inexpensive, delicious dish spread across the world, to bring us to the finely baked layered beef, corn and potato most people are familiar with today.  Of course, like anything this dish can also be made in a gourmet fashion by adding other ingredients such as braised lamb, sweet potato or aged chedder.

The staff seemed to be satisfied with the delicious comfort food this week, which even spurred a debate about whether ketchup was making or ruining the dish.  At least we all can agree that we love the Friday Lunch.