In preparation for Food Revolution Day, my home became a test kitchen of sorts. After scouring the internet for recipes to make for our little food club’s Food Revolution Day event, I settled upon the following 3; a zesty lemon curd, a delicious ketchup and a versatile garlic-infused olive oil. I chose these recipes (featured at the end of this post) based on the following criteria… They had to be:
- Easy to transport (we are splitting what we make between us and storing our finished products in sterilised, recycled jars)
- Easy to make (especially as our cooking is a group activity)
- Tasty (of course!)
- Versatile (we have a vegetarian club member and one with a gluten intolerance to consider)
- Things that we would ordinarily purchase from a store, but that we can make from scratch ourselves
- Relatively fast to make, fuss-free and with little preparation/cleaning up involved (on the same day we also attended a weed foraging activity/talk and had afternoon tea at Rosenhills Trädgård, a pick-your-own farm just outside of town… and then I had a 30th birthday party to attend! Busy, busy!)
In advance of May 17, I prepared a Food Revolution Day workplace activity for my husband’s team; a cupcake decorating mini-workshop. The theme was “vegan cupcakes” and I baked my favourite vegan chocolate cupcakes and made vegan vanilla frosting, which my husband took to his office on the day, along with some cute decorations (sprinkles, edible pearls, organic toasted coconut, vegan chocolate, handmade vegan fondant flowers, homemade piped flowers, etc.). I created a pdf presentation with piping instructions for creating swirls and rose swirls using a Wilton 1M tip and included my frosting recipe at the end. I left the rest up to my husband, his team and their creative minds. The results they produced were truly lovely and I am told that everyone thoroughly enjoyed this slightly unusual workplace event (and eating the cupcakes). I was asked to judge a winner from amongst the creations and it was a tough call, but I ended up choosing a cupcake design that was reminiscent of a banoffee pie (yum!). I have since been asked to provide the recipe for the cupcakes too, which I am more than happy to share, both here on my blog (coming soon!) and with my husband’s colleagues.
Donations for this event were collected to support the children’s charity SOS Barnbyar.
The very next day I hosted our food club’s Food Revolution Day event at home. We began the day with cups of tea and coffee and getting started on the first batch of lemon curd. To make things easier we worked in pairs. Those who weren’t actively cooking chatted and ate lunch (grilled cheese and apple sourdough sandwiches and vegan cupcakes). We made a big pot of ketchup (enough to divide between all of us) and finally the garlic-infused olive oil, which really takes no time at all. We left everything to cool, piled into our car and headed for Rosenhills Trädgård. Luckily, only days before the event, I had checked the Rosenhill website and saw that on the very day we had planned to visit, a herbalist named Kickan Berglund would be holding a foraging activity/talk. Roughly translated to English, Kickan’s event was advertised as follows:
Weeds! Can you eat them?
Welcome to a spring walk in Rosenhill’s beautiful garden.
We’ll taste, pick and dry weeds for our Green Pharmacy, share recipes for cooking with weeds and discuss many other things such as weed picking and natural remedies.
All the girls agreed this would be a fun and appropriate addition to our Food Revolution Day activities. Kickan (who lives part-time in Sweden, part-time in Spain), was extremely excited to have made it to Rosenhill in time for “dandelion season”. As she chewed on a dandelion stem, she discussed the health benefits of dandelions and when it is best to use the various parts of this weed (flowers, leaves, etc.). We took a short walk around the farm and, as we came across various weeds, they were discussed, picked and tasted (if appropriate!). We ended up in the lovely greenhouse where we sat and listened to Kickan whilst we tasted weed-based delicacies such as pickled dandelion buds and weed syrup on crostini and tried some of Kickan’s natural skin care preparations (she runs a small business called Häxans Apotek, meaning “Witch’s Pharmacy”). Whilst all of this was going on, my parents-in-law had kindly arrived at the farm with my curious, outdoor-loving toddler and my husband was taking care of baby Cupcake. We all met up for a stroll around the farm and afternoon tea in the cafe after Kickan’s actitivty was over. Back at my place, tired yet inspired, we filled the jars with our homemade goodies, tied our personalised name tags to them (I couldn’t help myself!) and everyone started to head home… just in time for me to throw on some party clothes and head out the door with my family again! The girls had such a great time that I am still getting asked when the next event will be (I have been asked as recently as tonight… whilst working on this post!). It’s safe to say the day was a great success. Amazing what a bit of preparation and a big ol’ dose of inspiration from someone awesome (ie, Jamie Oliver) can do! 🙂
Donations for the entire day’s event were collected to support The Good Foundation in Australia.
I have used three different lemon curd recipes over the years, but this one is by far my favourite now. The last one I used contained cornflour and although it was tasty and fulfilled its duty as a lovely sponge cake filling, I felt the cornflour was a bit of a “cheat” when it came to thickening! I love that this recipe includes a lemon zest and sugar mix. I truly think that helps set it apart from other recipes out there. If you prefer a completely smooth lemon curd, you may wish to alter this recipe slightly. Before my FRD event I had only eaten this lemon curd direct from the saucepan after making it (gluttonous, I know 😉 ), but knew it would no doubt be divine served in little pastry cases or on scones, sponge cake, shortbread, etc. I recently found a wonderful recipe for Portuguese milk tarts (which I plan to share soon) and, served with this lemon curd, they were absolutely delicious.
2.5 dl sugar
115 g unsalted butter, room temperature
120 ml lemon juice (3 to 4 lemons)
1/8 teaspoon salt
- Using a vegetable peeler, remove the zest of 3 lemons, being careful to avoid the white pith.
- Put the zest in a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Add the sugar and pulse until the zest is very finely minced into the sugar.
- Cream the butter and beat in the sugar and lemon mixture. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and then add the lemon juice and salt. Mix until combined.
- Pour the mixture into a 2 liter saucepan and cook over low heat until thickened (about 15 minutes), stirring constantly. The lemon curd will thicken at just below a simmer.
- Remove from the heat and cool or refrigerate.
My husband doesn’t normally use ketchup, but said he’d very happily eat this one… on its own… by the spoonful! So in my book, it’s a winner! It has a sweet/sour-ish, slightly spicy kick to it and would work well in place of barbeque sauce too. Very easy to make, it uses basic ingredients that you may well have on hand already.
INGREDIENTS (for 10 servings or approximately 200 ml)
140 g tomato paste
2 tbsp plus 2 tsp white vinegar
25 g – 55 g brown sugar (depending on how sweet you like it)
3/4 tsp garlic powder
3/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp allspice
3/4 tsp salt
3 1/2 tsp syrup (I used light, organic syrup)
245 ml water
- Mix together all ingredients in a saucepan over a low heat. Simmer gently until sauce reaches the consistency of store-bought ketchup (approximately 45 minutes).
- Taste and adjust salt if necessary before serving or spooning into a sterilized jar for storing. If storing in the fridge in a sterilized jar, this ketchup should keep for at least 2 weeks.
This could NOT be any easier! Yummy and versatile, this oil can be used for cooking, in dressings, on bread, etc. For a lovely flatbread recipe that utilises this garlic oil as a drizzle, visit this post.
1 dl organic olive oil
1 garlic clove, very finely chopped
- Combine the oil and garlic in a frying pan over medium heat. You are not frying the garlic, just taking the edge of the rawness.
- As soon as you see the first signs of sizzling, pour the oil and garlic out into a small bowl or a sterilised jar and leave to cool and infuse for a few minutes at least before serving/storing.
*Recipe closely adapted from one found in River Cottage Veg Every Day, by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall HOW TO STERILISE RECYCLED JARS
I came across this great post from WikiHow and forwarded the info to my food club friends in advance of our Food Revolution Day event so that we could all have 3 sterilised jars each ready to go. Here’s the simple run-down:
- Wash jars and lids thoroughly. They must be spotless.
- Place jars upside down in a cold oven and then heat oven to 160 degrees C. Once the oven has reached this temperature, turn off the heat.
- Sterilise lids by boiling them in water for 10 minutes. Leave the lids in the water until you are ready to use them.
- Once your finished product is cooled in the sterilised jar, lift out the lid out using a pair of tongs, dry it off and seal the jar before storing in the fridge.