Food waste

Food Waste

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

the coop and food waste

Over the last few days the Co-op hit the headlines for its war on waste.  Its East of England stores will now be selling food that is past its ‘best before date’ for 10p http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-42217026

food-waste2In the run up to Christmas when we are all busy stocking up our shelves, fridges and freezer it’s perhaps worth bearing in mind that £17 billion worth of food is thrown away every year in the UK.  That’s the equivalent of £470 per Uk household

We all have a part to play in that number, for instance shops and manufacturers generate 6 million tonnes of food waste annually, restaurants generate another 3 million tonnes and 33% of the food we buy is thrown away

But at the same time 8.4 million people in the UK who are too poor to eat and 4.7 million people go a whole day without food

food-waste-infographic

So what can you do to help reduce some of these statistics?

Food waste top tips

Tip #1 - understand the difference between use by, best before and sell by dates.  It could make the difference between using or throwing away food

use-by-dates

Tip #2 – go shopping with a list. It could not only reduce your food bill by discouraging you from purchasing BOGOF and other special offers but you will only buy what you need and help reduce waste

Tip #3 – Use the freezer to correctly store leftover food.  Place leftovers in freezer bags (clearly labelled with the contents and a date)

Tip #4 – Love your leftovers; veg can be made into a winter warming and cheap soup, stale bread can be turned into breadcrumbs, garlic bread or frozen for later, herbs can be added to bottled oil to create flavoured oils, potatoes can be cooked,mashed and frozen, ripe bananas can be broken into pieces and frozen ready to be added to smoothies, turned in to squishy banana bread or whizzed in a blender to make ice-cream

Tip #5 – Stalks, stems, outer leaves from veg and herbs can all be frozen ready to make homemade stock for stews, soups, risottos and sauces

Tip #6 – Ripe fruit can be cooked in a small amount of water and some cinnamon, nutmeg and a pinch or two of sugar until soft and spooned over yoghurt, served with your favourite cereal or eaten with custard.  Any left over can be frozen flat in freezer bags

Tip #7 – Never go food shopping when you are hungry; it could encourage you to make impetuous buys

Tip #8 - Make your salad leaves last longer by putting them in a big bowl or tub, lay a paper towel or two over the top so moisture doesn’t settle on the leaves. Cover with a lid or some clingfilm and store at the bottom of the fridge.

Tip #9 – Practice portion control and don’t overload your plates with food.  Consider using smaller plates, bowls and glasses

Tip #10 – If you have left over food contact your nearest food bank, soup kitchen, charity or local church and let them redistribute it for you

 

 feed-bellies-not-binsWhat’s your best tip for avoiding food waste?

Cheats mince pies

Cheats Mince pies

mince pieThis is a recipe I made a few years ago when some unexpected guests arrived one Christmas and I needed to make some mince pies pronto! And your guests will never guess the ‘cheat’ or that they are vegan!

I have pimped up shop bought mincemeat but you can just open a jar and get cracking

So the cheat is to use wholemeal bread instead of pastry.  Its so simple, quick and easy and you can make as many or as few as you need.  I also keep a few frozen slices of wholemeal bread in freezer bags for those surprise visitors.  And 15-20 minutes later they are settled with a homemade mince pie and a cuppa (or something stronger)

One slice will make 2 circles and 2 star tops i.e. 2 complete mince pies.

vegan cookery classes

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My cookery class guests have made these mince pies today along with chocolate truffles and ginger men biscuits.  If you’d like to come to any of my vegan classes then please contact e for more details

 

 

 

So what are you waiting for get rolling!

Makes 6 mince pies

3 slices of wholemeal bread

6 teaspoons (120g) shop bought or homemade mince meat

2 tsps of your favourite tipple (brandy, rum, sherry etc) – Optional

1 cooking or eating apple washed, cored but not peeled

1 tsp cinnamon or mixed spice

2 tsps oil

large pinch of sugar

extra cinnamon, mixed spice or nutmeg for dustingpastry cutter for mince pie

1 pastry cutter 3″ or 78mm wide

1 star cutter

1 rolling pin

bun tin

 

Pre-heat the oven 220C/200C fan/gas 7.  Grease the bun tin using a small amount of oil and some kitchen roll

Using the rolling pin roll out and flatten each slice of bread.  Make it large enough so that you can cut out two circles and two stars*

 

Place the circles in the bun tins and press down so they line the tins.

Chop the apple in to small cubes or grate on a course grater

img_9116In a bowl add 120g of mincemeat, chopped/grated apple, cinnamon or mixed spice and alcohol (if using).  Mix together and spoon in to the bread cases

Using a pastry brush, brush the remaining oil carefully over the stars.  Place a star on top of the filled pies sprinkle with extra cinnamon and a few grains of sugar

img_9122Bake in the pre-heated oven for 15-12 minutes until the tops look nice and toasted.  Eat hot or cold, either by themselves or with some soya cream or custard

They should be stored in an airtight container and will keep for 4 days

*The left over bread can be used to make bread sauce, homemade stuffing, make a shop bought stuffing go further or frozen until you decide what you want to do with it!

 

 

christmas Merry Christmas! 

 

 

 

Celeriac and leek soup

celeriac-4Celeriac and leek soup with hazelnuts and crispy sage – serves 2

This warming soup is an ideal starter if you have a vegan or vegetarian guest coming for Christmas.  It can be made in advance and frozen.  Crisp the sage leaves and add the hazelnuts on the day though

In fact it is so tasty all your meat eating guests will want a bowl, but don’t worry the recipe can easily be double or tripled

vegan-xmas-poster-jpegMy vegan Christmas cookery class guests will be making it (along with chestnut and cranberry terrine and chocolate pots) on Saturday 10th December. I have a couple of places left if you’d like to join me

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

Celeriac and leek soup with hazelnuts and crispy sage – serves 2

15g hazelnuts,2 tsp olive oil

100g leek

1 garlic clove

500ml veg stock

250g celeriac, peeled and chopped

200g floury potato (russet, Desiree, King Edward and Maris Piper.) chopped only

12 small sage leaves, salt & pepper to taste

Drizzle lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil

 

  • hazelnutsAdd the hazelnuts to a hot dry frying pan. Cook for 3-4 minutes until toasted, keep shaking the pan.
  • Wrap the toasted nuts in a paper towel and rub to remove the brown skin. Cool then roughly chop
  • Heat 1 tsp oil in the pan cook the thinly sliced leek on a medium heat for 5-6 mins. Add the chopped garlic and cook for another minute. Add the celeriac, potatoes and stock

celeriac-5

  • Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 20-22 mins until the veg is soft. Using a stick blender blend until smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust seasoning

 

 

  • celeriac-6Heat 1 tsp oil in a pan and fry the sage leaves, stirring for 1 -2 mins until crispy. Drain on paper. Serve the soup topped with the toasted nuts and sage leaves. Finish with a drizzle of lemon juice and olive oil (or you could add a splash of soya cream)