National Baking week and blogger bake offs!

Filed in Blog by on October 22, 2008 9 Comments
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sausage casserole for a zero waste mealWhat I would do without you? Thanks to one of our regular readers, Maisie, I learned that we are half way through National Baking Week! How could that go unnoticed; especially as we are taking part in our second zero waste food week?

As it happens I took part yesterday anyway, without even realising. I made eight apple crumbles for the freezer. I only got through about a fifth of the apples we have, but I ran out of butter. Today I plan to get more butter and do some more preparation. In addition I’ll be making the shortbread I wrote about yesterday.
Baking Week this year has a theme called “Bake 5” – that is, 5 main meals, with 5 ingredients that take about 5 minutes to prepare. Well I haven’t been doing that, but perhaps we can set up our own ‘bake 5’ challenge in a few weeks time if anyone is interested in joining in.

Only last week The Breadline Africa Worldwide Blogger Bake Off was launched! The Blogger Bake Off is an online campaign that challenges bloggers to get involved by baking bread, and then acting by donating to end poverty. And then, challenge their readers and five other bloggers to do the same. You can read more about it on their site. I’d like to get involved with this, especially as hand baking bread is not my forte. My trusty machine does it for me, but with my ‘too busy to care?’ head on, I’ll be having another go at creating a hand baked loaf. So look out fellow garbloggers, I might just be challenging you to bake bread soon πŸ™‚

Yesterday I used up loads of leftovers. I made sausage casserole, which used up a bit of vegetable soup that Little Miss Green left over from her snack, some gravy from Sunday, a bit of chopped onion and an old potato and carrot that were looking a little sorry for themselves. I made a batch of curried black eye beans, which went down a storm and served it with salad.

For pudding, I made Apple Amber. I’d never heard of it until a friend called me yesterday morning and mentioned it in a conversation. Apple amber, in case you are wondering, is a pound of stewed apple with two egg yolks, some sugar (I don’t bother, but it’s traditional) and lemon juice mixed in. You bake it for 20 minutes and then top with meringue and bake for another ten minutes.

Tea was more of the same, and Little Miss Green had a pear craving and sat and ate four for her tea – that put stop to any fruit waste this week!

It seems it was a day for mishaps on the food waste front too. Di over at path to Greendom had to bin some broccoli, while Kris’s husband manly waded his way through tasteless pasta and she gave up trying to eat it. To add to the crime scene, the big pot of dahl we’ve been watching grow for a week, really did grow something – a kind of fetching grey and green furry jumper. So the remainder was binned (well, actually we put it on the fire as it was only a couple of desert spoons worth). Still the good intention was there as I was going to dollop it into the casserole to thicken it.

So, all in all a good day, a little food waste, but nowhere near the amount we would normally produce. There is now a bag of yellowing watercress in the fridge which needs some resuscitation. I feel some pate coming on……………

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About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (9)

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  1. Hi Mrs G – a blogger bake-off is a great idea. On the baking front I’m afraid I’m not holding my end up that well this week, but I did manage an apple crumble today. It’s all those free apples people keep giving me. LOL. Wish me luck though, as I’m trying out a jam recipe at the moment. I’ve got over my inhibitions and thought I’d give it a go. However all this exciting stuff is distracting me from a fading broccoli, which might just end up with the same fate as Di’s if I’m not careful πŸ˜€

  2. Kris says:

    Tonight we are having a casserole rather like yours as I’m pulling together soup, pulses from the chilli the other night and various veg – plus using up those new potatoes that I snubbed on that fateful pasta night…

    The Bake5 initiative sounds good – I can manage five ingredients! But I’m a bit confused by the juxtaposition of the bake and the main meal ideas as I always think of baking as bread and cakes.

    A freezer full of crumble sounds like autumn heaven πŸ™‚

  3. esther says:

    I’m not in a zero food waste week yet, but while reading your blog, I get lots of ideas…this evening, we were eating quinoa, and the kids didn’t really like it that much….leaving me with a lot of quinoa…
    Hey, I thought, they do love pancakes with chocolate.
    And so I made pancakes, with the cooked quinoa in the pancakemix….and they actually loved this dessert! (which they will also have for breakfast, with some bananas on it!

  4. We have a cake to bake tomorrow!

  5. Mrs Green says:

    How did the jam turn out, Mrs A? And I’m eager to know if the broccoli survived or was tossed!

    How was the casserole, Kris? It’s good that you’re salvaging the potatoes from the other night. I know what you mean about baking sounding as if it can only be cakes. Their site has some ideas, I guess pasta bake might count πŸ˜‰ Really I suppose it’s anything that involves putting the oven on LOL!

    Esther – chocolate and quinoa pancakes – now you are talking! I can’t bear Quinoa, but Mr G loves the stuff, either sweet or savoury. I tend to treat it like couscous and it’s good with bits of fruit in it like pineapple with savoury things like sweetcorn and peppers for a sort of sweet and sour salad. Still the pancakes sound like a huge hit – what a great idea πŸ˜€

    Sarah, tell me; what sort of cake did the Barnard household indulge in? It’s lemon cake for us today, at LMG’s request.

  6. Chocolate sponge – it’s our favourite, But today I am baking (if it goes in the oven it’s baking right?) some mince I found in the back of the freezer into a cottage pie, to be served with whatever veg I find lurking in the fridge.

  7. Kris says:

    The casserole was very nice, though it somehow did betray it’s origins with a bit of a ‘combined tins’ taste, but hey! I used up a couple of tins bought in a mad emergency flood-buying moment…

    It reminded us of S’s Dad, he used to sometimes surprise us with a meal which would be a weird and wonderful mix of any tins he had in the kitchen – though his unique touch was serving it in serving dishes size portions and enough pepper to make your eyes water πŸ™‚

    I remember buying a box of quinoa a few years back, after it was hailed as a megafood. We just didn’t like it either, and I think (hope) it went onwards to a relative. Putting it in pancakes sounds a good remedy.

  8. Mrs Green says:

    Chocolate sponge. Mmmmmm, Little Miss Green will be with you on that one. She’s asked for chocolate crunch for lunch today.
    Glad the casserole turned out ok, Kris. I like the story of S’s day; it’s great how those memories stay with us. I remember my Grandma for egg and chips followed by chocolate blancmange. My Other Grandma is remembered to me whenever I see piccalilli LOL!
    DH will just eat quinoa on it own **barf**

  9. Kris says:

    Oh my Dad is a piccalilli man! I’d forgotten it existed until I was invited to stay to lunch πŸ™‚

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