This week has been manically busy but awesome. I’m back in Oxford and have started a wonderful but hectic job at a local delicatessen. Perhaps the best news is that the deli has started serving millet (!!!!!). Ah my god this literally made my year so far. Conversations with customers go something like this:
Customer: “Hi, I’d like a salad selection please. Is that quinoa?
Me: “Oh…that’s not quinoa. That is anything but quinoa. Quinoa is dogshit compared to this miraculous grain. This is millet. Did you know I did my Masters on millet? No? Well, let me tell you a few facts about millet: it is gluten free, iron rich, it is full of calcium and folic acid, and best of all it is versatile and easily integrated into every single meal. Porridge, beer, soups, salads, casseroles, biscuits… Oh god, millet is perhaps the best thing since sliced bread. In fact, you can make bread out of millet!”
I truly believe they appreciate this level of customer service.
I’ve also realised that I don’t hide my emotive reaction to people’s salad choices very well. There’s this young student who now just gives me his plate and makes me create a meal for him instead, lest I judge his flavour combinations. He hasn’t come in at all this week…I wonder why…
In other exciting news, I have moved into a new house. Slowly but surely, I am en route to becoming a hipster ‘foodie’. It started with a denim shirt and bobble hat, increasingly documenting my food choices via Instagram, and now…I live in in Oxford’s best location for local food markets, artisan stores, live gigs and innovative cocktail bars. My new house also has a fantastic kitchen, so prepare yourself for more Instagrams than ever before.
Right, enough ‘milling’ over my week, let’s get onto our Sunday Roast.
My absolute favourite brunch is avocado on toast. However, over the years, I have had my fair share of bad avocados on toast. The worst was at a ‘high end’ restaurant in London where it literally was a smear of greeny-brown mush on half a slice of toast. Others have been much more successful: my favourite so far is at New Zealand Coffee
shop in Bow. Omg it’s so tasty I nearly licked the plate.
In my quest for the absolute perfect avocado on toast, I tried out this recipe… it is heaven. Literal, creamy heaven. I will gloss over the fact that both avocados and tahini are aphrodisiacs (I ate it alone watching Game of Thrones), and simply urge you all to try it.
The ingredients are as follows (I will leave the prep to you, it’s pretty self-explanatory):
- Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 an avocado, sliced.
- 1 slice toast (I had it on seeded wholemeal toast)
- Spoonful of tahini
- Salt and chilli flakes (optional)
- Sesame seeds (to make it look pretty and add crunch)
I Am A Food Blog by Stephanie Le.
Introducing Stephanie Le. Her recipes are delicious, unique and encourage a fusion of different cuisines from Asian, Italian to American. Oh, and she dreams about Taylor Swift (thank god, there’s more than one of us), takes amazing photos and is hilarious. My favourite opening line was on a post about sesame chicken thighs:
“Because I’m all about those thighs, ’bout those thighs, ’bout those thighs”.
|Sesame chicken thighs, recipe found here
Not only do we all have that song in our heads, but we should also have a smile on our faces; a sign of a great food blog.
I must admit I haven’t cooked anything from her blog yet, but just looking at the photos makes me hungry. In the next few weeks, I will definitely be cooking several of Stephanie’s recipes, but my presentation and photography skills may lack somewhat. My £40 Nokia doesn’t really do lighting/focus/zoom/selfies/anything a functioning camera phone should do…
Yes, this is article rather than an academic journal, but it draws from various studies and is well worth this spot in the Sunday Roast. Each year, the UN has an International Year dedicated to a particular theme in international development. 2015 is the International Year of Soil.
Soil is the most underrated resource: over 95% of our food comes from the top layer of soil. We determine our past climates through soil analysis, and it holds a multitude of compounds and organisms that are essential for the functioning of our future terrestrial and atmospheric systems too. We are utterly reliant on this finite resource, yet many just see it as mud or dirt.
I made the stupid mistake of accidentally calling soil ‘mud’ at a farming conference: I will never forget the gasp then shocked silence as the eyes of a dozen farmers bored into my skull. No one should make this mistake, and everyone should read the above article just to realise why.
But, even if it arrives on our plates, food can also be wasted on us if we do not appreciate it: the fact we have access to nutritious food three times a day, can share food with families and friends, and eat a diversity of meals at restaurants and home. This should never be taken for granted.
|Fiesole, Italy: Perhaps the best meal of my life – sourcing, environment and service all 10/10
Ensuring that the efforts of people at each stage of the food is not wasted is also of paramount importance: the farmers, drivers, traders, retailers, chefs, friends and family, waiters and waitresses. The Sustainable Restaurant Association emphasises this and advocates building a stronger link between sourcing, environment and society. This includes restaurants encouraging cookery classes for children, treating their staff in an ethical and respectful way, encouraging consumer knowledge of provenance, promoting zero waste campaigns…
Next time you go out to eat, try and search for a restaurant within the Sustainable Restaurant Association.
If not possible, just don’t let your food and the people and environment behind it go to waste.
The Food Tank is my ultimate favourite website when it comes to food and agriculture news. I had the pleasure of meeting Ellen Gustafon at an event a few years back, and was utterly inspired by the innovative and passionate way she spoke about the potential of ‘true cost accounting
‘ as a means to move away from an unsustainable era of cheap, fast food. This list of 101 hopeful facts is testament to this passion, along with every other article on Food Tank.
It’s well worth a read and the website is well worth an explore: there is something for everyone, from videos to book recommendations. With such doom and gloom in the media about climate, food and hunger, this should fill you with hope and power to act.
Until next week!