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Carina in Print – Scots Mag January 2018

A sneaky preview of of Carina’s January 2018 article!

Hands up who eat too much in December.  Every year we say we’ll resist, we’ll just have a little, one glass will be fine but oh no we don’t listen and it all goes straight to our hips or to Victor’s tummy if you haven’t noticed!.  I do love him cuddly. So we’re back to dieting.  I’m going to admit I’m not as bad as I’ve been in previous years as I’ve cut grains from my diet since June on doctors orders and I’ve never felt better.  I’ve eaten more and more vegetables than ever to bulk out the space vacated by the grains and although I’m eating so much more than better I’ve not been piling on the pounds.  Over the summer I do feel as if I could be vegetarian. There are many who proport that we should all be vegetarian.  In order to provide a sustainable world food system we should be eating less meat but we still should be eating a balanced diet.

11% of the world’s population is hungry eating less than the recommended daily calorie intake of 2100. Some estimates say between one third and a half of all food produced is wasted.  We know that western culture is the biggest culprit.  We eat too much, we buy to much and we bin too much.  I do think we are far more aware and the number of television programs dedicated to showing us how much money we waste and with all our pockets tightened over the last few years we’ve had to be less wasteful.  Supermarket bulk buying and the dreaded date codes have driven us to a fear of not getting a bargain – we do need three because we get one free even though we only wanted one in the first place.  Where is the logic in that?  We’re seeing through the marketing and being forced to recycle and separate out our waste at home does make us all think.  Restaurants have been doing this for years

We are very conscious of this in the restaurants and have changed our menus accordingly to manage portion size so guests get just the right amount per dish.  In the past our portions (and prices) were much bigger but we’ve reduced to align with our own eating habits and by watching what gets wasted.

The Scottish Cafe & Restaurant was the first gallery restaurant in the Uk to achieve a 3 star rating from the Sustainable Restaurant Association.  This body looks at sourcing, environment and the social aspect of a restaurant.

The moral of the story is we all need less waste. For our trousers and for our planet.

Traditional Scotch broth with a heavenly finishing touch

Everything in moderation always serves us well.  The little bit of barley in this delicious soup will give me a good boost for January and made in advance with any extra boxed and frozen there will be no waste from this pot that’s for sure.

200g of dried pearl barley
200g of dried mixed beans, soaked overnight in plenty of cold water
carrots, washed, peeled and chopped
1 baby turnips, washed, peeled and chopped
Onions, peeled and chopped
2 leeks, trimmed, washed and chopped
200g of curly kale, washed and chopped
2 litres of hot mutton or vegetable stock

Garlic & Rosemary Pesto

1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon of salt
1 handful of rosemary leaves finely chopped
3 tablespoons of extra virgin oil

Rinse the beans in fresh water, add to pot of cold water and then bring to the boil
Drain the beans.
In a separate pot bring the stock to the boil and reduce the temperature to a simmer.  Add the beans with the barley
Add all the vegetables, but not the kale.
Simmer for at least 1 hour until the beans are tender
Add the chopped kale, cook for another 10 minutes until the kale has dissolved and the soup looks thick.
Check the seasoning
Finally cream the remaining pesto ingredients using a pestle and mortar.  Use the oil to obtain a lovely smooth consistency.  Add a tablespoon to the soup just before you serve.