The Circus Gardener's Kitchen

seasonal vegetarian cooking with a side helping of food politics

Tag Archive for ‘meat industry’

smoked aubergine, tomato and chickpea casserole

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

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

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 […]

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winter slaw with ginger and sesame dressing

winter cole 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

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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wild garlic oil

wild garlic oil

If you’re looking for an ethical reason not to eat meat, then it’s hard to better the words of the ancient Greek historian and philosopher, Plutarch who, in his work Moralia wrote: “but for the sake of some little mouthful of flesh we deprive a soul of the sun and light, and of that proportion of life and time it had been born into the world to enjoy” Human beings […]

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roasted Brussels sprouts and shallots with lemon and smoked sea salt

roast Brussels sprouts with shallot lemon and smoked sea salt

This week the Council of the European Union signed off a new Directive which could have huge ramifications for the food we eat. The Directive on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) will come into effect on 2 April. Its stated purpose is to allow Member States to ban or restrict the cultivation of genetically modified organisms on their territory, even if those crops have received EU approval. But at the same […]

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courgette, tomato and olive tian

courgette, tomato and olive tian

Three weeks ago the Guardian newspaper reported an attempt by the British government to shelve publication of the official report from an Inquiry into the country’s 2013 horse meat scandal. Yesterday, the report was finally published. The Inquiry, chaired by Professor Chris Elliott of Belfast’s Queens University, had been set up to investigate how horse meat had managed to find its way into a range of processed meat products for […]

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carpaccio of summer vegetables

summer vegetable carpaccio

Although we humans probably like to think of ourselves as the single most successful organism on this planet, there is a strong argument that it is bacteria which should occupy that position. Capable of evolving at extremely fast rates, bacteria are as a consequence supremely adaptable to any challenges their environment throws at them. Over the relatively short human time span since Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin eighty six years ago, […]

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rosemary and pine nut semifreddo

rosemary and pine nut semifreddo

As the weather continues to warm up, the new season’s array of herbs are sprouting up in my greenhouse and all over my allotment plot, the Circus Garden – mint, oregano, chives, parsley, French tarragon, horseradish, basil, coriander, lemon thyme, lemon verbena and fennel, alongside more unusual varieties like blackcurrant sage, lemon basil and basil mint, each offering a range of different culinary possibilities. But one herb has always been […]

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