The Circus Gardener's Kitchen

seasonal vegetarian recipes with a side helping of food politics

Tag Archive for ‘meat industry’

parsnip, cranberry and nut roast

This week’s recipe is for parsnip, cranberry and nut roast, a delicious vegan alternative Christmas dinner. An enormous amount of meat will be consumed, and discarded over the Christmas period this year. Aside from ethical considerations about the slaughter of other sentient life, there is no doubt at all that our current levels of meat consumption are contributing directly to climate change. The government’s own Committee on Climate Change is […]

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crispy aubergine with a hot, sweet and sour sauce

Today marks Earth Overshoot Day, the day in the calendar when humankind has used up the equivalent of a whole year’s worth of the Earth’s natural resources. When I began writing this blog five years ago, Earth Overshoot day fell on 20 August. Each year since then it has moved to an earlier date in the calendar, marking our continued failure to live a sustainable existence on this planet. The […]

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Bombay new potato

Humankind’s relatively recent obsession with the beef burger and with fried chicken has had a huge impact on the world around us. This extent of that impact has been laid bare by a recently published study by Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science. The study, uniquely, set out to look at the distribution of all living things on Earth – plants and animals – by mass rather than population. Using this […]

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smoky bean and tomato stew

Since 2010, initially under the guise of “austerity”, the British government has decimated funding for safety inspections within the food industry. Nowhere has the result of these cuts been felt as devastatingly as in the meat industry. 40% of meat hygiene inspector posts have disappeared in the last eight years, along with similar proportions of environmental health officer and trading standard officer posts. Little wonder, then, that we again face […]

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stir fried green beans with crispy shallots

When I began this modest little blog four years ago I had two aims in mind. Firstly, I wanted to show that vegetarian food can be delicious, exciting and nutritious. Secondly, the blog would give me a platform for sounding off about those aspects of the food industry that I don’t like – which is pretty much all of it. I had previously decided to become a vegetarian not because […]

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smoked aubergine, tomato and chickpea casserole

Occasionally I am told that one of the “problems” of a vegetarian or vegan diet is that we humans can only obtain “complete protein” from eating meat and fish (a “complete protein” being one which contains the nine “essential” amino acids). This claim is wrong on two counts. Firstly, it is factually inaccurate: there are several plant-based foods that not only contain traces of the nine essential amino acids but […]

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Thai-style cucumber salad

Today marks Earth Overshoot Day, the day in the calendar when humankind has already used up the equivalent of a year’s worth of natural resources. It marks our continuing failure to adapt towards a more sustainable pattern of existence. When Overshoot Day was first calculated, back in the mid 1980s, it fell on 19 December. Although in recent years the rate of acceleration has decreased (last year Overshoot Day fell […]

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roast chickpea and avocado salad

In the past twelve months some 2,000 square miles of the Amazon rainforest has been lost to clearing – equivalent to 50 football pitches every minute. Although some of these losses are due to illegal logging, much of it has been to meet the demands of the cattle industry. In 2009 the multinational food giants McDonald’s and Cargill were named and shamed by Greenpeace for their role in the clearance […]

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winter slaw with ginger and sesame dressing

The United Nations General Assembly has declared 2016 to be the International Year of Pulses. This announcement is important for several reasons. Firstly, it underlines the important role pulses play in the diets of a significant part of the world’s population. Secondly, it highlights the need for us to look at more sustainable sources of protein, given the meat industry’s massive contribution to global warming and profligate use of increasingly scarce […]

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portobello and wild mushroom and ale pie

It is something which is at once amazingly powerful and yet incredibly fragile. Without it we would not exist. Indeed, without it there would be no life on Earth. What is it? Soil. The living skin of planet Earth. This thin, fragile layer on the surface of our planet is literally teeming with life. Grab a small handful of soil and what you hold in your hand will contain more […]

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