Leading the school food revoloution

I had all these grand ideas for blog posts over the last week, but nothing went to plan. First the bonfire toffee turned out to be nothing like what I know bonfire toffee to be and I think I managed to make the stickiest toffee known to man. I think I’ll be sticking to my tried & tested cinder toffee.

Then last night I made mini chocolate sponges with Mars bar sauce (thanks to the tonne of mini Mars bars we had after no trick or treaters appeared)but although they tasted good they looked ugly. I really need to master taking good pics in our kitchen at night time. These sponges were to accompany a cracking roast beef dinner I had made. While shopping I picked up some Tracklements Strong Horseradish sauce. I noticed it had been awarded a Great Taste Award this year. My goodness is it strong, but goes perfect with beef. Just use it sparingly!

The poor garden has been looking a bit sorry for itself. The frosts here have started and the garden now gets minimal sun. We’ve been waiting and waiting for the Blue Ballet squashes to ripen but due to the lack of sun this wasn’t happening and decided to cut them from the vine before the frost killed the two of them. Once cutting one open it was a gorgeous yellowy orange inside. The first squash was roasted to go with last nights roast dinner. I’m not a huge fan of squashes as I find them too sweet, but this squash was lovely with an interesting texture not too dissimilar from sweet potato. This however could be because they were not fully ripened. We’re planning on replanting the seeds from this years haul next year and my workmate (a good-lifer extraordinaire) has assured me that squash seeds roasted with a bit of chilli and salt are fantastic and are almost as good as pork scratchings.

On a more positive note I’ve discovered a great foodie magazine. I was getting bored with the usual lot of food mags out there at the moment. One particular magazine, of which I won’t mention, a few months about was quite an ethical food magazine supporting Hugh and his Chicken Out campaign, then last month were advocating 2 for £5 chickens. The new magazine is Fresh Magazine. After just buying just one issue I’ve decided to subscribe.

The most exciting news for me is that I’ve been asked to help lead a healthy food programme in school. Usually the role is given to staff on the Senior Management Team, but due to the size of our school I’ve been asked to take on the role. I’m going to be involved, amongst other things, finding out why school dinner uptake is only 50%, what parents & kids would like to see on the menus, promoting healthy eating throughout the whole school, introducing more cooking/healthy eating into the curriculum. It’s going to be a challenge as healthy eating can be a bit of a contentious issue with both parents and staff, but if my input can make the school a healthier and happier place I’m prepared to put everything into it. I have various jobs to do first, like audits, before I implement anything but if there is anyone out there who can help me or know of companies/organisations/websites who can help with healthy food education please email me on julesatdit AT googlemail DOT com

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