Tag: recipe

Spook-tastic ways to use pumpkins this Halloween

26th Oct 22 by Megan Romania

Across two ‘Halloween’ seasons alone, Feedback rescued around 45 tonnes of would-be-wasted pumpkins.

Join us for some Pumpkin gleaning in Sussex on November 2!

Crisp apples. Cosy sweaters. Colourful leaves. Why yes, Autumn is by far my favourite season. And with this changing season comes my favourite holiday: Halloween.

Halloween, and even the whole of October, is characterised by spook and scare. One thing is for certain, the most frightening part of Halloween isn’t the ghosts, the ghouls, the black cats or broomsticks. Instead, what sends a chill down my spine are the pumpkins. Or rather, the unnecessary food waste incurred by their existence.

Carvings pumpkins is great fun, there’s no doubt. However, in an age where food production and consumption are the greatest impacts humans have on the planet, it’s becoming ever more prudent to reconsider the role that our holiday celebrations play as well. Halloween, and our meticulously carved pumpkins, can be no exception. Boo*.

In 2021, Feedback rescued 5.3 tonnes of pumpkins from farms. This represents a massive waste of precious resources used to grow pumpkins ultimately thrown away. We can personally attest that they are tasty and would be better used for a variety of autumnal recipes!

The Alchemic Kitchen, Feedback’s social enterprise based in the North West of England, have been leading Feedback’s creative efforts to use pumpkins that would otherwise be left to rot in the fields or on front porches. Savoury pumpkin scones, a Thai yellow curry, and a delicious dahl are just a few of the possibilities.

Have a pumpkin recipe you’d love to share? Tweet us at @feedbackorg or tag us on Facebook!

*Pun intended?

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Have yourself a merry, waste-free holiday!

20th Dec 21 by Megan Romania

Reflect on your food waste and wider consumerism. One simple way to reduce food waste is to scale back how much you buy to begin with.

‘T’was the night before Christmas, when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even…’

Oh, a mouse.

Gnawing away your leftover holiday roast.

If you’re one of those people who has tossed out uneaten, but still edible, Christmas puddings, you’re not alone. Indeed, alongside the holiday festivities, with turkey, mince pies, and all sorts of puddings galore, comes the significant food waste in households. In fact, Unilever research estimates that every Christmas, British individuals throw away an estimated 2 million turkeys, 74 million mince pies and 5 million Christmas puddings. Yikes.

Even less joyous, this post-holiday waste is only part of the picture. WRAP estimates that British households throw away around 7 tonnes of food (worth around £720 per family) annually. Such wasteful practices are having both significant economic and environmental impacts – in fact, reducing food waste is one of the most effective ways we can reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.

‘It’s not what’s under the Christmas tree that matters but who’s around it.’ – Charlie Brown, A Charlie Brown Christmas

We ask that you reflect on your food waste practices and wider consumerism. One simple way to reduce holiday food waste is to scale back how much you purchase to begin with; if you know certain foods won’t be eaten, then reconsider their purchase in the first place. Reflecting on your broader consumerism practices might include opting to gift experiences rather than physical items, or re-gifting unused items, purchasing gifts from second-hand stores or charity shops, or gifting a currently owned sentimental item, such as your favourite book or jumper. After all, the holidays aren’t about things and stuff, they’re about spending quality time with the people you love, surrounded by delicious food and cheer.

Even if you tried your best to gauge how much food you’d need for the holidays, it’s possible you’ll still end up with too many leftovers. But, if you do have heaps of leftovers and don’t know where to start, have no fear! Feedback’s Alchemic Kitchen has compiled a list of easy-to-make, delicious post-holiday recipes to help you re-purpose those extra parsnips – thus reducing food waste and saving you money at the same time.

What holiday recipes do you love to make with leftovers? Tweet or Facebook us!


Roast Potatoes

If you haven’t gobbled up all of your roast potatoes, combining them with pickled onions and greens make a delicious Boxing Day breakfast.

Heat 3 tbsp of vegetable oil in a shallow frying pan, and add in the pickled onion, sliced in half. Toss over medium heat until the onions start to caramelise – allow about 10 minutes. Add a pinch of cayenne and some thyme. Then, add in your leftover roast potatoes (you want about 500g in total); you can also throw in any leftover parsnips and carrots. Stir well to keep from sticking. Finely slice your leftover greens (brussels sprouts are perfect) and add to the pan. Season with salt and pepper and then serve. The crispy bits are the best!

Stuffing hash with pigs in blankets

If (by some miracle) all the pigs in blankets haven’t been used up, make this Boxing Day hangover cure.

Heat a large shallow pan, add a little oil, then crumble in the leftover stuffing. Snip your pigs in blankets into 3 and add to the pan. Stir well. If you have a few roast potatoes or other veggies leftover, chuck them in as well. Add a tin of chopped tomatoes and stir well. A pinch of chilli works well at this point. Spread the mixture evenly over the base of your pan, use a spoon to make 4 hollows and then break an egg into each hollow. Cover the pan with a lid and keep on a low heat while the eggs set; this takes about 4 minutes. Serve.

Sandwiches – what Christmas leftovers are all about

The below are amazing combinations for toasted sandwiches:

  • Crumbled Stilton mixed with a dollop of mayo, sliced spring onion, and chopped dried apricots.
  • Brie and cranberry with a scoop of leftover red cabbage.
  • Gently cook a sliced onion in butter and add a tsp of curry powder, shred in leftover turkey or chicken, add a dollop of mango chutney and some crème fraîche. Also works very well with noodles or flat ribbon pasta.

Roast Parsnip Soup

If you have a few parsnips left over from your Christmas dinner, don’t bin them, make this delicious soup instead!

Halve and chop one onion and cook gently in 1 tbsp of butter (or vegetable oil) until soft and golden (it takes longer than you think!). Keep the heat low and stir occasionally; don’t let it brown or the soup will be bitter. Chop up your leftover roast parsnips, about 400g or so, and add to the pan with a sprig or two or thyme if you have it on hand. Stir well. Add 1.5 pints of stock (turkey is ideal, but you can use vegetable if you prefer) and bring it to a slow simmer for 10 minutes. Take off the heat, remove the thyme sprigs, and use a blender to purée the soup. If it’s too thick for your liking, add a bit more stock. Taste and add seasoning – lots of pepper is good. At this point you can start playing – if you have left over stilton, crumble some in, if you have cream, add a dollop. If nuts are more your thing, toast a handful of chopped hazelnuts or walnuts and scatter over the top. We have been known to fry up stuffing until crisp and then scatter that across the top. If Santa has been kind and brought you truffle oil, a drizzle or two works absolute magic.


Leftover stollen or panettone makes an amazing baked pudding, especially with extra marzipan.

Chop up about 250g of either stolen or panettone into chunks. Grease a shallow baking dish with butter. Pile the sweet breads into the dish. If you have leftover marzipan to use up, glacé fruits or chocolate chop up and toss with the breads. In another bowl, whisk together 2 eggs, 225 ml of milk and 140 ml of cream, add a tbsp of caster sugar and a tsp of vanilla essence. Pour over the breads. Set the baking dish into a roasting tray and pour over hot water to halfway up the sides of the baking dish (not in with the bread). Carefully place in the oven at 140C fan or Gas Mark 3 and bake for about 35 minutes until lightly browned. Dust with icing sugar and serve with a dollop of ice cream.

Leftover mincemeat from pies is delicious added to halved and cored baking apples.

Place apples into a microwaveable dish. Spoon mincemeat (you can also use marzipan) into the middle of the apples, add a dot of butter, and cover with cling film. Pierce to let steam out and microwave for 4.5 minutes on high. Serve with custard.

Too much cream? Make citrus possets.

Place 600ml of double cream and 120g caster sugar in a pan. Heat gently, stirring to ensure all the sugar has dissolved and the cream just started to bubble. Allow about 5 minutes. Add the zest and juice of 1 large orange and 2 lemons (you can also use tangerines) and stir well. Set aside to cool down. Once cool, spoon into glasses and leave in the fridge for a couple of hours or ideally overnight. Serve with those leftover shortbreads.



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Swap salmon for a different kettle of fish

30th Jan 20 by Christina O'Sullivan

With so much diet chat focusing on restriction - what if we opened ourselves up to exploration?

Veganuary? Dry January? The chances are some of you have started the year attempting to change your diet. Changing what and how we eat is necessary to tackle the Climate Emergency. The global food system is responsible for up to 30% of Greenhouse Gas Emissions – the single greatest impact we have on the planet.

My beef (pun intended) is not with shifting our diets in a more sustainable direction but instead with the way this is often communicated. So much diet chat focuses on restriction and promotes the idea that certain foods are inherently good while others are inherently bad. When in reality a sustainable diet is a balanced one. The food system is incredibly complicated, so whenever I see a silver bullet solution being touted I indulge in some healthy scepticism.

Enter the ‘super-food’ (this term doesn’t actually mean anything – it is purely a marketing phrase) that is salmon. Salmon is an incredibly popular fish choice in the UK – purchases of salmon have risen by 550% over the last 50 years and a recent survey showed that salmon was voted people’s favourite fish to eat. Salmon is good for us but our dedication to the salmon is a super-food mantra puts pressure on our ocean.

The salmon on your dinner plate is probably farmed, around 60% of the world’s salmon production is farmed, and in Scotland this figure reaches 100%, with the last commercial wild salmon fishery closing in late 2018. Farming salmon at an industrial scale requires large quantities of feed including wild caught fish. The current quantity of wild fish fed to farmed Scottish salmon, 460,000 tonnes, is roughly equivalent to the amount purchased by the entire UK population.

Even worse, research shows that 90% of wild caught fish used to produce feed are edible – what if we ate that fish instead of feeding it to salmon? Last year we worked with Michelin-star chef Merlin Labron-Johnson to explore that idea. Merlin cooked up herring, anchoveta and whiting – see the video below for a taste.

We are asking you to swap salmon for something a bit different – turns out there is plenty more (interesting) fish in the sea.  Sign up here to receive recipes and ideas for what to eat and make sure to tag us and use the hashtag #SalmonSwaps to show us what you cook up.

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Roast dinner leftover soup

29th Jan 20 by Keenan Humble

A great soup to make after a Sunday roast using leftovers and things from your cupboard.

This recipe is great to cook after the weekend, if you have made a Sunday roast, as you may well have the leftovers and peelings from vegetables. The recipe is really versatile and any left-over veg or veg peelings you have can form the base of the soup. The same principle can be applied with the main body of the soup; boiled potatoes, cooked rice, cooked pasta and cooked noodles can all be used. The herbs and spices you use is also completely versatile, whether you have dried or fresh – use whatever is in the cupboard!

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 onion (peeled & chopped)

4 garlic cloves (peeled & crushed)

3 leek tops (sliced)

2 tbsp oregano (fresh or dried)

2 tbsp smoked paprika

2 tsp salt

2 tsp black pepper

1.5 litre veg stock

Carrot peelings (from 4/6 carrots)

Potato peelings (from 4/6 medium potatoes)

Broccoli stalks (chopped)

Cauliflower leaves (chopped)

Mashed potato/ boiled potato/ cooked rice/ cooked pasta

1) Put your oil into a large saucepan and add your chopped onion, crushed garlic and sliced leek tops. Sweat for 3-4 minutes over a low/ medium heat until the contents of the pan have softened. At this point add your smoked paprika, oregano, salt and pepper.

2) Pour over 2/3 of the vegetable stock and add the peel from the potatoes and carrots, cauliflower leaves and broccoli stalks. Allow the veg trimmings to cook until tender, this should only take around 10 minutes in simmering stock.

3) Once your veg is cooked and tender, add your mashed potato/ boiled potato/ cooked rice etc. If you are using cooked rice, ensure it has been stored in the fridge and then cooked through fully in the stock. Whatever carbohydrate base you have chosen to use, cook it through in the stock, stirring regularly.

4) Once all of the ingredients have been added and heated through, use a stick blended, or regular blender to blitz the soup until smooth. It is here where the last of the stock may come in handy, if the soup is a little thick, add more stock until it is the right consistency for you.

5) Once blended, put the soup back on the heat and warm through. Check the seasoning and serve.

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