30 easy ways to join the Food Revolution – Ollie Hunter
Sustainability is so often made super complex to the extent that it becomes almost unintelligible and can seem completely unachievable. Ollie Hunter’s new book 30 Easy Ways to Join the Food Revolution makes it fun, easy to understand and most importantly achievable.
Based on the three main principles of zero waste, seasonal organic food, and sourcing locally, the book incorporates myth-bunking facts, humorous personal anecdotes, cheerful graphics, useful recipes and practical tips.
Ollie writes sympathetically, acknowledging that getting started with a sustainable lifestyle can seem daunting and reassuring us that “it’s not your fault” individually that we’re in this mess, but now we’re in it together. He encourages us to find our own voice, because so often what we need to lead a sustainable life isn’t immediately available – does your local supermarket sell pasture-fed beef or serve dry goods in refillable containers? We have the power to demand sustainable food and drink and Ollie’s book gives us the confidence to do so.
His recipes are super simple and provide advice on how you can adapt them for other ingredients you might have hanging about. They cover everything from ways of preserving fruit and vegetables to making your own cheese. There’s even a recipe for using up asparagus ends, which I’ve always been told are too woody to eat! He also includes a recipe for scrambled eggs, because as he rightfully points out, if you are as addicted to scrambled eggs as he is, you can have a big impact by making sure you always eat them as sustainably as possible. Breakfast is a good place to start. We so often eat the same thing for breakfast that if we just make sure that is sustainable, already we’ll be making a big difference.
There is so much knowledge packed into this book, but the most surprising section for me was about pollinators. I had no idea that bee farmers feed bees with sugar over the winter because they take all the honey and that this in turn is making the bees ill just as it makes us ill. As Ollie dryly remarks “we’re substituting sugar with another sugar product and driving our beloved bees to near extinction”. Now I’ll know to look out for non-sugar fed honey, but Ollie goes one step further and encourages us to rethink our use of sugar in the first place:
“Perhaps instead of ‘substituting’, we should try to create better techniques for extracting the natural sweetness from ingredients. Many vegetables, for example, are rich in sugars….so the answer to this lies in changing our ways of cooking and rebalancing our palates. Sugar, like salt, is a seasoning. Perhaps we need to learn how to season again and think about how we can create sweetness from natural produce. I love honey – I really do, but it’s not a life-given right to have honey all the time. Honey is to be respected and so are its makers.”
30 Easy Ways to Join the Food Revolution really is the handbook we’ve all been waiting for to help us eat more sustainably while still having fun and enjoying our food. If you’re keen to get your hands on a copy, you can purchase one on Amazon here.