By guest blogger HELEN ROADHOUSE
A busy session was in store last Wednesday evening in Levenshulme at the Inspire community centre, where we were running another of our free Love Food Hate Waste sessions with Recycle for Greater Manchester. We had a full house so Cracking Cook Maz distributed the veggies and demonstrated the best way to chop. She also explained that a great way to reduce wastage is to leave the skins on some veg, especially carrots and potatoes - there are more vitamins and fibre in the skins anyway! We had carrots, peppers, tomatoes, sweet potatoes (we did peel these!) and aubergine - a whole variety of veg can be used in the tagine we were making, and it's a great meal for using up those vegetables that might be getting a little past their best. We added chopped apricots and honey for sweetness, and spices, including cinnamon.
Maz asked about shopping habits and lots of the group were quite candid and admitted to shopping while hungry and ending up buying too much or falling for BOGOF (buy one get one free) offers. We discussed writing lists so you just buy what you need and will use, and a few participants already did this. One lady was great at freezing her extras and leftovers but now had a freezer full to bursting! Our quiz helped her with some ideas of how to use her frozen supplies, while everyone was really creative in coming up with recipes to use up all those forgotten items at the back of the cupboard - including enough ingredients to make sushi!
By now, the tagine and mash was ready and was served up with a minty yoghurt sauce. It was delicious and so distinctive in flavour. Everyone's plate was emptied, and the general consensus was that everyone wanted to make it again at home. This was a lovely, open group of people really enthused and really wanting to learn about how not to waste food and how to use ingredients more creatively. It was a very satisfying session for us to run and the LFHW message was well and truly received.
Our last Love Food Hate Waste session this year is tonight in Bolton. Details of how to sign up for this FREE class and those in the next round, which starts on 20 January, can be found on the Cracking Good Food website.
Visit the Recycle for Greater Manchester blog for our 12 Top Tips for a waste-free festive season.