Excerpts from the Forestparkreview.com:

Forest Park Firefighter Andrew Weber was pounding pork chops recently when he heard a call. Weber and his six crew members answered the call and then returned to the kitchen, chopping vegetables, stirring mashed potatoes, setting the kitchen table and, in Weber’s case, finally cooking the pork chops. Weber added banana peppers to the meat, and finished the meal with a homemade dessert of layered ice cream sandwiches, peanut butter, Cool Whip, and crushed Oreo cookies.

Cooking and eating comprise a big part of firefighters’ work lives who spend one-third of their lives with their shift mates. When they are not out on a call, training, or working out in the weight room, they make the second floor of the station their home. And that includes the kitchen. 

When the shift starts, one of the first things the group does is sit around the table and decide what they will make for dinner and who will be the lead chef.  There are three shifts and each has its own refrigerator and floor to ceiling shelving for dry goods. Each person has their signature dish. 

Yvan Woitecki, 32, a paramedic who has been with the department for a little over a year, makes chicken salad with honey, mustard, lots of mayo, white chicken meat, and whatever vegetables are available. The firehouse meal he’ll really remember, though, was on December 25th last year, Christmas Day, when firefighters decided to add a little extra to the grocery budget. Weber used the extra funds to buy a prime rib roast. 

Travis Myers, 39, who has been with the department for nine years, said his signature dish is Philly-style cheese steaks.  

But not all the firefighters like to cook.  “I like to order pizza,” said Kenneth Hriensaitong, 44, adding that he’s rarely cooked in the 12 years he’s been in the department. Hriensaitong started a debate about which restaurant makes the best pie in Forest Park. After a few minutes of sparring, the group finally agreed that McGaffer’s Saloon makes excellent thin crust.

thanks Dan