Catch of the day: Dining out again at the Sharing Sherwood project.

It’s the second Sunday of the month again, so this evening Husband and I took our neighbour with us and we went to have dinner at the Sharing Sherwood project again.

At the Sharing Sherwood project volunteers cook food given to them by the organization FareShare (they collect food from supermarkets that they would have binned and distributes it to soup kitchens and food banks) and people can come and eat for a donation. The money collected goes to foodbanks in Nottingham.

We had such a lovely time when we went last time and were determined to go back again as it’s such a lovely idea. Last time the donations made plus the entry money totalled £155 – this is a great help for the project as they are hoping to donate at least £100 to each foodbank in December this year from what they’ve made from the dinners.

Hard to imagine that if the food served there had not been snapped up by FareShare it would have been binned by the supermarkets! I have already pencilled in that we’re going next time it’s on in September.

There were fewer people there than last time. We guessed it was because it’s school holidays now and so many of the families who brought their children last time are away on vacation.

 

Photo0356
Tonight’s menu. All delicious.
Photo0355
The donations table. You make a donation and then you can help yourself to the food. Someone had also brought in a basket of rhubarb and several giant marrows from their garden to share.
Photo0357
My lovely dinner! Going clockwise we have a vegetable bake, asparagus, red cabbage, afghan pilau rice and vegetable curry. Topped with fresh chopped coriander. I may have gone back for seconds…
20840097_10155354338935255_1730396476_o
Our haul from the donations table today, plus one of the marrows. So glad we could go along this time. Need to look up what to do with a giant marrow now!

Avoiding food waste: Dining at the Sharing Sherwood project.

One afternoon I had a look at the library notice board after collecting some books, and I came across this notice:

536086

 

It said that for a suggested donation of £2.50 per adult and £1.50 per child, anyone was welcome to attend and eat food that would otherwise had been thrown out by the supermarkets. Food is collected by FareShare that supermarkets need to get rid of due to their use by/best before dates, and Sharing Sherwood cooks the food and serves it to people who donate to eat. The funds are then donated to food banks around Nottingham.

Husband and I have lived here for a year now after we bought our house but want to get more involved in the community so we decided to go.

In addition to this, I am very passionate about food and food waste – wasting food is criminal in my opinion is a waste of precious resources and labour.

We have a food, toiletries and clothes bank at the college for hard up students – it is surprising and shocking to see how deprived some of our students are. As a department we also collect food for the food banks every summer as children who normally get free school meals have to be fed in the summer as they aren’t at school putting extra strain on people’s household finances.

Sharing Sherwood meets at the church up the street on the 2nd Sunday of every month at 6pm.

Husband and I went along, and paid at the door before finding a seat.

Photo0334
Our menu for the night.

We had a lovely time there, trying the different food – there was loads of food to be had and everyone could have seconds if they wanted. 70 people attended and it was nice to see how varied the group was, from people with families to students to pensioners.

Photo0333
Delicious food, rescued from an untimely end in the bins! Going clockwise from 12, we have carrot and parsnip fries, tortellini pasta bake with tomatoes and feta, asparagus and edamame beans, salad cream, green salad with feta and falafel. All delicious.

Everyone pitched in with cleaning up and putting stuff away afterwards, and this session we were told raised £155 for the foodbank. People are encouraged to bring a drink and a container when they come as they hand out the leftovers afterwards, so as to not waste food.

The food was delicious and there was plenty of it; we wouldn’t have realized this food was ‘out of date’ if we hadn’t been told. We think this is a brilliant idea, and husband and I said to each other several times how unbelievable it was that this food had not been snapped up by FareShare, it would have gone in the bin as it was past it’s ‘use by’/’best before’ date.

I spoke to one of the volunteers and they said that the only thing they did not get a lot of was meat as it’s hard to store and keep fresh until they use it. But with all the food that was available, it didn’t even occur to me that the meal needed some meat, it was fine as it was.

They also had some food laid out on one of the tables where you could help yourself, for a donation. We made a donation and took this home:

19885689_10155244105925255_325832199_o
More food saved from the bin! We may or may not have already quality assured the Special K biscuits. Can’t wait to try the soups.

The next dinner will be held on the 13th of August and I’ve already put it in my calendar so husband and I will go again!

If you want to read more about the project and join their FaceBook page you can do so here.

Potato and carrot soup.

In my quest to save money (and in my realization that I have £4 left to spend this month on the food budget and it was the 20th yesterday, eeeek), I decided to spend today making some soup. Filling, cheap and hot, soup is a gift and I am amazed you don’t need a prescription for it!

We had a roast chicken on Saturday. I saved the carcass and fat from this and put it in a large casserole and added 1.5 litres of water. I then went into the back garden and got two sprigs of thyme and two of sage which I washed and then put in the water after cutting them up using my kitchen scissors.

I left this on a low heat for an hour with the lid on, then got the chicken carcass out leaving the stock and herbs in the casserole. Mine stayed fairly intact but you could always pour it through a sieve to separate the bits from the stock.

I then added 8 potatoes I peeled and roughly chopped and for colour I added 4 small carrots, also peeled and roughly chopped. I then added a quarter of a stock cube I wanted to use up. Once I had added these things I turned it up a little to get it to boil up and left it until the carrots and potatoes were soft.

Now you can do two things here, either eat it as it is, or use the hand blender like I did. I blended it together, and added salt, pepper and parsley to taste. I think a splash of cream would work well with this as well. However as SOMEONE has to shift some weight this soup will be left cream-free.

I’m so pleased with it. It’s got the consistency I wanted and it’s nice and filling and the specks of green and orange adds colour. I’ll be bringing this with me to work Thursday and Friday I think, Saturday we have an open day at work which means all staff get a free lunch, so that saves me having to use food to make a lunch to bring with me. And not to forget, we have been invited to dinner this Thursday^_^

Photo0288
Delicious and warm and cheap. Three very endearing qualities.

In other news I was sad to read in an email I received that the product testing panel for Tesco, Tesco Orchard, is closing on the 31st of March.I enjoyed taking part in the product testing for them and posting pictures and reviews of what I’d tried. I am still a member of BzzAgent so will keep logging in there for campaigns and things to try.

(I know we will have to buy cat food today or tomorrow but I still have a lot of vouchers saved for Sainsburys and I think I will use my Nectar points to pay for my shop, so that way I can buy milk etc. tomorrow.)

I’ll go and call my sister and have a cup of tea now, before doing some surveys I’ve been sent. Might need to check the washing on the line as it has been a very windy day today.