The Circus Gardener's Kitchen

seasonal vegetarian recipes with a side helping of food politics

strawberry gazpacho

We are witnessing a strange political contest here in the UK. The Conservative Party is in the process of electing a new leader, and the successful candidate will automatically become Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. The voters in this election are a tiny, unrepresentative group. Demographically, they are predominantly white, male, well off, based in the south of England and with an average age approaching 60. They are, of […]

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broad bean hummus with za’atar and sesame crackers

This recipe for broad bean hummus with za’atar and sesame crackers is the latest in a monthly series of recipes I have created in association with Suma Wholefoods. In these recipes, I use products from Suma’s extensive range of organic and ethically sourced products, and the recipes appear both here on my blog and on the Suma website. “Hummus” is Arabic for “chickpeas”, but fresh broad beans (known as fava […]

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raspberry and mint sorbet

A couple of years ago the World Health Organisation predicted that all nations in the European Union would continue to see increases in the proportion of their population that are obese, with one exception: the Netherlands. More on the Netherlands later, but an interesting piece of news closer to home caught my eye recently: the city of Leeds in the UK has managed to reduce the rate of obesity amongst […]

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pea and rocket consommé with asparagus

There have been three recent surveys into the impact of what are termed “ultra-processed foods” on human health. I must admit that until quite recently I had not come across this term, having tended to mentally divide foods into two simple groups – “processed” and “not processed”. “Ultra-processed foods”, it transpires, are foods which have incorporated multiple additives, in the form of preservatives, sweeteners, colourants and processing aids, but which […]

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asparagus, ricotta and basil tart

Regular readers of this blog will know that I work as a volunteer on Saturday mornings at the Old North Stables Community Teaching and Display Gardens in Worcester. It was there that I first came across the principles behind “no dig” gardening, a growing technique pioneered by Charles Dowding. When Transition Worcester first acquired the land at the old stable block on the side of Worcester racecourse, it was heavily […]

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vegan churros with chocolate sauce

This recipe for vegan churros with chocolate sauce is the latest in a monthly series of recipes I have created in association with Suma Wholefoods. In these recipes, I use products from Suma’s extensive range of organic and ethically sourced products, and the recipes appear both here on my blog and on the Suma website. These churros and the accompanying chocolate sauce are not only vegan, they are also gluten-free […]

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tempura vegetables with sweet chilli dipping sauce

This week is national vegetarian week. It’s an incentive for non-vegetarians to give up meat for a week. A vegetarian diet tends to be naturally lower in saturated fat and cholesterol than meat-based diets, and on average vegetarians generally enjoy better health and longer life expectancy than their meat-eating counterparts. Vegetarianism is also a more efficient way to consume the Earth’s increasingly precious food resources. Currently 83% of farmland and […]

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rocket, crispy shallot and Parmesan salad

The underpinning principle of organic gardening and farming is that if you feed the soil by adding organic matter to it, usually in the form of compost, it will provide the best growing environment for healthy plants. By contrast, in non-organic farming the soil is simply used as a medium for tethering plants. Nutrients in the soil are gradually depleted and the loss is never made good. Manufactured chemical fertiliser […]

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carrot and apricot falafel with whipped feta and dukkah

This recipe for carrot and apricot falafel with whipped feta and dukkah is the latest in a monthly series of recipes I have created in association with Suma Wholefoods. In these recipes, I use products from Suma’s extensive range of organic and ethically sourced products, and the recipes appear both here on my blog and on the Suma website. Carrot and apricot may sound like a surprising combination, but aided […]

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chard and butter beans with wild garlic

The meat industry is a staggeringly inefficient vehicle for producing enough food to feed a growing world population. An astonishing 83% of all agricultural land is now devoted to livestock, yet meat produces only 18% of the world’s supply of calories. The imbalance is growing: as nations become richer – in monetary terms – they tend to increase their meat consumption, placing even more strain on finite agricultural land. The […]

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