Food Revolution Day 2016

Food Revolution 2016

Since 2013, I’ve been celebrating Food Revolution Day with a group of bloggers that met when we worked through Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table. We’ve all moved on to other projects, together and separately, and added new blogging colleagues along the way.

Today, we’re convening again to contribute our voices to Food Revolution’s mission: to talk about how “children access, consume and understand food” and to ensure they have “access to good, fresh, nutritious food for generations to come.”

Our celebration is taking place across two cook-along groups started by alumni of French Fridays with Dorie: Cook the Book Fridays and The Cottage Cooking Club. We have one Food Revolution Ambassador in each group, Mardi of eat. live. travel. write and Andrea of The Kitchen Lioness, and each had a unique take on this year’s Food Revolution Day theme, which is #FeedtheFuture. Jamie Oliver released ten recipes to learn and share that he believes can teach you all the skills you need to feed yourself for the rest of your life. Using this as a template, each of our Food Revolution Ambassadors came up with challenges appropriate to the book their group is working with.

Cook the Book Fridays: Ham, Blue Cheese, and Pear Quiche

Ham, Blue Cheese, and Pear Quiche

Mardi has taken the lead on Food Revolution Day, first in French Fridays with Dorie and now in Cook the Book Fridays. She chose David LebovitzHam, Blue Cheese, and Pear Quiche from My Paris Kitchen for the group to prepare this week, as a “must know” recipe. Quiche is almost infinitely variable, and can accommodate gluten-free, vegetarian, and even vegan diets, with some simple ingredient substitutions.

It’s a dish that highlights a skill that’s just as important for a healthful diet as the ones covered in Jamie Oliver’s “starter pack” of healthy recipes – baking. Knowing how to make your own crusts, breads, and pastries can empower you to choose the best ingredients and use them in delicious and healthy proportions.

Quiche is also a great dish to help you avoid food waste – nearly anything in your fridge that needs using can be put into a quiche. And if you get into the habit of keeping savoury tart doughs in your freezer, it’s easily a weeknight meal option or a last minute potluck solution. I’m exemplifying this tonight – the quiche is in the oven while I’m writing this post.

I decided to follow Mardi’s lead and “minify” this recipe. I made muffin-tin servings of quiche, which are easy to share. I made the full recipe of tart dough, freezing half. My quiche crust is an interesting colour – I used organic blue cornmeal in place of yellow cornmeal, as that’s what I had on hand. It’s ground to a fine texture, which is a plus for a crust. Cornmeal can often lend a gritty texture to doughs like this.

I halved the quiche filling, though. I’ve only got so many taste-testers available this weekend. I didn’t vary David’s recipe and I’m glad. This is a rich, sophisticated quiche. Ham, blue cheese, and pear are classic flavour partners. That said, I’ll use this quiche recipe as a jumping off point whenever I have some cream cheese hanging out in my refrigerator. As I said before, a world of possibilities can be contained in the crust of a quiche.

You might notice there aren’t any photos of my quiches. It was dark by the time I finished my post, so I’ll add some tomorrow, so you can see them at their best.

Three mini quiches

You can read through the Cook the Book Fridays crew posts for this Food Revolution Day here. And consider joining this community of wonderful cooks and lovely people, as we work our way through David LebovitzMy Paris Kitchen.

The Cottage Cooking Club

Since we just wrapped up cooking our way through Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall´s River Cottage Veg, Andrea took a different route for this group’s challenge. She asked us to choose up to ten recipes from the book that qualify as “must know” dishes and to share the techniques and skills we learned in making them.

My mind turned to categories, rather than specific dishes, so I’ll share a few of the things that River Cottage Veg helped improve in my own kitchen.

Roasting deepens flavour

Roast until fabulous

If you were brought up the way I was, most vegetables got roasted alongside cuts of meats or as a part of stews. Otherwise, they received a stove top or steamer treatment. But, roasting brings out the best in many vegetables and several of Hugh’s recipes are oven-roasted improvements on stove top staples.

Oven Roasted Roots Frittata

Oven Roasted Ratatouille and Roasted Tomato Sauce

Roasted Roots with Apple and Rosemary

Homemade sauces and condiments are easy and delicious

Dressings and Condiments

You really don’t know how good something can be until you’ve eaten it fresh out of the kitchen. Condiments and dressings are easy to make and so much better than the ones you can buy at the supermarket. Besides, you’ll improve your knife skills when you process all those beautiful aromatics.

Lemony Guacamole

Mojo Sauces

Tomatoes with Thai Dressing

Great flavour starts at the base

Depth of flavour

When you work at creating a delicious flavour base, whether that’s a scratch curry paste or an infusion of dried mushrooms, your dish will be more than the sum of its parts. It doesn’t take long to add flavour, so there’s no reason to skip steps.

Eggplant and Green Bean Curry

Mushroom “Stoup”

Over the last two years, our group picked up or refined cooking skills, encountered new ingredients, and learned new approaches to familiar ones. However, the greatest gift that working through this cookbook gave us was to reinforce the truth that vegetarian and vegan eating can be flavourful, varied, healthy, and more than enough. I think that qualifies as a Food Revolution, don’t you?

You can find the rest of the group’s Food Revolution posts, here. I encourage you to check them out – you’ll meet some wonderful bloggers and get some great inspiration for healthy, delicious eating.

And you can join in on the Cottage Cooking Club’s next adventure, cooking through one or both of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall´s River Cottage Every Day and Love Your Leftovers – you can find the details, here.

World food waste statistics

I believe that people need access to safe, affordable, whole foods; access to the skills and techniques to prepare foods; and access to the housing, income, and safety that will allow them to cook. This will ensure the health of future generations and the planet, reducing the waste of food, packaging materials, human potential, and environmental resources that an industrial, processed food system can enable. Participating in initiatives like Food Revolution Day can only help those goals along.

You’ll find plenty of posts, photos, videos, and more if you search the #FeedtheFuture and #FoodRevolution tags on your social media channels, encompassing a huge range of perspectives on what it means to bolster food security for coming generations.

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42 thoughts on “Food Revolution Day 2016

  1. Teresa, great, insightful post – as always!! I wondered what you would do with the quiche, since it’s nothing close to vegan! I’ll be interested to see how the blue corn turned out. My cornmeal was too coarse, and I didn’t really love that part. I totally agree, quiche is a great way to use up small bits and pieces of things, and it also is a great way to stretch ingredients, while making it all look impressive!

    And for CCC – I think that was a great post, and think your recommendations were spot on! Great idea for that. I still love so many of the recipes in River Cottage Veg. Life has gotten a little busy lately, so didn’t get a post done for that. But so happy that you added your sage advice!!

    1. Thanks so much for your kind comments, Candy! I saw that someone suggested running the cornmeal through a sieve to eliminate the coarser bits – I think that would solve the texture problem a lot of people had. I had a few coarse grains in mine, but didn’t mind them. And I don’t expect we’ll be leaving River Cottage Veg on the shelf any time soon – like you, we’re still enjoying cooking from it.

  2. Great cooking lessons AND I loved the idea of reducing food waste by baking a quiche! You used both barrels in your Food Revolution! And you really got to the heart of the goals of food security in your summary. Your heart was in this one, Teresa, so no wonder it was late last night. 💟

  3. It kills me that 1/3 of the food produced worldwide is wasted. With so many hungry mouths, especially among children and seniors, it’s a crime. I try so hard not to waste food and make an effort to buy less and use everything. I’m doing better but am not perfect yet. Your post was wonderful, Teresa, and I intend to reread it because you said so many important things. Over the past 4 years I think all of us who have been blogging together realize what an important event this is and try to commemorate it as best we can. That you honored both Mardi and Andrea is really nice and something special.

    1. Thanks so much, Mary! Your comments mean a lot. And I really wanted to combine the two groups in one post, because both have been so important to how I cook today. (And Mardi and Andrea deserve as many kudos as possible for their awesome organizational skills!)

  4. I love that your minified these! What a great idea that makes them perfect for a cocktail party or hors d’oeuvres. I will have to remember this…

  5. Hi Teresa, your post is very thoughtful and well done, love how you combined the two groups and showcased each one. Hope you are having a wonderful week-end, just arrived in Oregon for the summer.

  6. Yay! If I’d had time, I was considering doing a mixed post, but well, yeah. I loved seeing both CC and CtBF together!! Your quiches look great and I love the mini-quiche idea–going to keep that one in mind. Totally agree about the richness of the quiche-mmmm!

    1. Thanks, Katie! I enjoyed combining the two groups for this post. And the mini-quiches were so perfect for me – small servings that are freezable are a win in my book.

  7. There are so many things I love about this post I don’t know where to start!! First yes your mission definitely qualifies as part of the Food Revolution Movement. Completely agree about roasting veggies and making your own sauces and dressings – it is so easy, and they taste so much better than what you buy in a jar. Love your mini quiches, I always have a batch made and usually freeze a batch for quick snacks or last minute entertaining, next time I make mini quiches I’m trying this recipe 🙂

    1. Thanks so much, Meaghan! Making the most of our meals has been quite revolutionary in this house. I’m looking forward to seeing your mini quiches when you make them.

    1. Thanks for organizing this for us each year! I enjoyed combining the two groups into one post – it made for a complete meal (so to speak).

  8. Love your post, Teresa! Your mini quiches look wonderful! I love the idea of minifying them.
    Great choices from River Cottage. Roasted veggies are a mainstay in our house.
    We have really made some delicious food over the last few years, haven’t we?

  9. Great post, Teresa. My fridge is pretty much lacking in fresh produce these days as I find that the other person living with me at home is on a starvation(!) diet, a lot of fresh produce were rotting away every week, hence I stopped buying them for him! Those muffin-sized quiche look fab! And love your selected CCC items (a few of them echos my thoughts!) too!

    1. Thanks, Emily! It can be hard to know how to stock a fridge for two people, especially when one isn’t eating much. I’m looking forward to seeing your CCC post!

  10. I definitely am going to try those quiche! I haven’t had quiche in so long because of the flour crust but a cornmeal crust sounds wonderful. I hadn’t thought of that.

    1. I think it would work well with some g-f flour in place of the a-p flour. I find butter crusts in general convert to g-f very well. My favourite is Dorie Greenspan’s tart dough – I’ve been able to switch out the flour 1:1 without using gums or other additives. I suspect this one would be the same.

  11. Your little quiches are adorable and look delicious! I also enjoyed your recap of River Cottage Veg recipes; I have the book but haven’t fully explored it yet.

  12. I loved your minis- I wished I had thought of that!- I am impressed with all of you that got it in under the wire. I was so prepared- made my quiche the Sunday before as I had an insane work week. Had everything except pictures ready. Then I could not pull it together in time. I am going to do better in June.
    Thank you so much for all the vegetable stories too

  13. What a nice idea to use a muffin tin! They look like they came out perfectly! And really great post and info from River Cottage Veg. I’ll have to look for that book now!

  14. Hoo, so much to say – love the use of cornmeal, for starters. The quiches look exquisite, and I’m sure they must taste incredible. I love your points about good vegan and vegetarian food – it’s something that I’m constantly striving to improve myself. I love vegetable-based food, but so often it seems to be relegated to second place, and that’s just not the way it should be. And I hope we can all get on board with the ideas surrounding the accessibility of unprocessed, ingredient-based food and cooking. Cheers, and great stuff. Can’t wait to see where all of you take this in the future.

  15. Awesome post, Teresa! The quiches look so yummy! I always remind my kids and myself how lucky we are to have enough food to eat and how important it is to be a responsible citizen of the Earth. Reducing food waste, packaging materials, eating fresh, whole food, learning to appreciate what we have…..these are all very important messages for our future generations. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Another great post, Teresa. Everything that you said resonates with me, with us. We cook often quiche and frittata mostly to use up some of the produce in our fridge. And I love roasted vegetables! I hate wasting food and we buy and cook consequently. I love to bake for my family, sweet or savory, you gave me an idea to bake mini quiches and store them in the freezer. They look incredible!

  17. Dear Teresa, so, today I finally got around to posting my Food Revolution Day 2016 blog post for this year – it has been one heck of a busy week but today is a good day as any! Thank you from the bottom of my heart for participating in the CCC for all those months and for putting together such a wonderful and meaningful post! Thank you for all your kind words, words of widom and friendship! I appreciate all of them! Your quiches look amazing – I like litte portioned foods as well, I made mini Marie-Hélène’s Apple Cakes for FRD two years ago, they were a big hit with the kids.
    Loved looking at your CCC dishes again, always good to take a second an dthird look at Hugh´s recipes!
    Big fat Thanks and “see” you very soon,
    Andrea

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