Counting on … day 1.117

11th May 2023

Vegan Quiche

Make a short crust pastry with 200g flour and 100g vegan butter. Use this to line a flan dish

Lightly cook a colander  full of green leaves (spinach, chard, dandelion, herbs etc).  This can be done easily in a microwave.

Make a white sauce using 3 level tablespoons of yellow pea flour and about 500ml of oat milk. (Again this can be done in a microwave). Flavour with yeast flakes and black pepper.

Sautée an onion in some oil. 

Place the onion in the encase of the flan, add the green leaves and pour the sauce over the top.

Bake at 200C for about half an hour or until the quiche is golden and the middle firm.

Counting on … day 1.111

5th  May 2023

Government and the farming industry is part of a system that needs to change if we are to adapt to climate change and forestall a worsening of the current climate crisis. Nevertheless individuals can also be part of the process of change. We can buy less meat and dairy products and more – and more varied – plant based foods – ideally those that are locally grown and organic. We can support through donations and volunteering, habitat restoration and re-wilding schemes.

Eco Tips

Addressing  Food Insecurity 

28th March 2023

1. Ensuring people have a sufficient income. 

1b.. Growing our own food and enabling others to do likewise.

2. Taking action to limit keep rising global temperatures below 1.5C. 

3.  Paying  a fair price for the food we eat. You might buy direct from a farm or a group of  farms, or via a local vegetable box scheme. You might support a local farmers’ market. You might buy from a local independent green grocer. Similarly you might buy milk etc from a milk round where the price reflects the cost to the farmer. For cheeses, look to buy from small scale producers via a local cheese shop. And again buying fair trade options for imported foods can help ensure a fair price for the producer. Alternatively look out for products – coffee beans and chocolate in particularly – that have been  sourced directly from the grower. These  are often available through local independent shops and cafés.

Another option would be to subscribe to the OddBox fruit and veg scheme which buys food stuffs that would otherwise go to waste because they are misshapen, because the supermarket doesn’t want the crop, or because the crop has been too large or too small for the supermarket buyer – 

4. Buying from local producers and local retailers helps to improve local supply chains. 

5. Again the best approach to improving global food security and ensuring there is enough food for everyone is to reduce – or cost out completely – animal products.

6. To support and encourage the maintenance of healthy solid, you might choose to buy organic produce ( ), or to supplier items produced using  regenerative farming practices (

7. To improve the  security of our food supplies  through diversity, expand the range of foods you eat. Try different sorts and fruit and vegetables, different types of grain – emmer, einkorn, spelt, black barley  – and different sorts of nuts, spices etc. This can also improve your health – it is recommended that our diets should include 30 or more different types of fruit, vegetables, nuts, grains etc per week. See for example and

Improving biodiversity as a whole is also a good preventative against diseases that could ravaged farm production . You might therefore choose to grow more wild/ native plants in your garden, or choose plants that support and encourage biodiversity in terms of birds, insects, butterflies, and bats etc. many web sites have suggestions about improving the biodiversity of your garden including those of the RSPB and the Natural History Museum. You might want to support charities and organisations that encourage biodiversity and even extend that to the re-wilding of land, both in the UK – eg – and overseas – , ,

Counting on … day 1.084

28th March 2023

The Ethical Consumer magazine notes that ‘Cutting down on meat and dairy is one of the biggest ways you can reduce your personal carbon footprint. It can also help you avoid issues associated with factory farming, like the routine mutilation of animals or the cramped conditions they’re very often kept in.

If you have time, the cheapest and healthiest way of reducing meat and dairy is to cook from scratch using ingredients like beans, tofu and lentils, rather than relying on processed vegan foods. Processed foods also have a higher carbon footprint than cooking a meal from scratch.’

Counting on …day 1.074

17th March 2023

Drawing on both home grown food and OddBox food, earlier this week we had a ‘foraged soup in that I foraged the garden for green things and the remains of the OddBox, thus-

3 cloves of garlic and 3 shallots all sliced.

1 beetroot, 1 parsnip, 1 apple all diced

All these I softened in some rape seed oil. Then I added, 

A jar of cooked split green pea

A handful of red lentils

A teaspoon of miso

A colander of young dandelion and nettle leaves. 

I added water and left to simmer. Once cooked I liquidised everything to create a thick nourishing soup. 

Counting on …1.071

14th March 2023

“Cutting meat and dairy products from your diet could reduce an individual’s carbon footprint from food by two-thirds, according to the Oxford study, published in the journal Science.”

Major institutions are helping people make this change in lifestyle by serving less or no meat in their canteens. In 2022 Stirling became the first UK university to ban the sale of meat in its campus food outlets. This year Cambridge University has voted to do likewise. Newcastle Hospitals has meat free Mondays, which is an approach followed by various schools and colleges. 

A different world is possible!

Counting on … day 1:011

11th January 2023

Swopping from animal to plant based foods can make a considerable reduction to our carbon footprint. According to Exeter Council’s website:-

  • 1 vegetarian day per week (52 days a year) can save nearly 100kgs of CO2 per year.
  • 1 vegetarian week per month (12 weeks a year) can save nearly 153kgs of CO2 per year.
  • 1 vegan day per week (52 days a year) can save nearly 143kgs of CO2 per year.
  • 1 vegan week per month (12 weeks a year) can save nearly 231kgs of CO2 per year.

The BBC has an interesting calculator that compares the footprint of different types of food –

Further information – 

Counting on …. Day 424

31st December 2022

12 Days of Hope 

Tomorrow is the start of Veganuary. This annual campaign encouraging people to rescue their consumption of animal products. 600,000 people officially taking part in 2022, up on the 580,000 who took part in 2021. YouGov tracker data suggests 2-3% of the UK population are now vegan and 5-7% vegetarian – and growing!

Counting on … day 415

22nd December 2022

Ginger biscuits have the smell of Christmas. Rather than using just ginger, add other spices too such as cinnamon, allspice  and cardamon. 

The following is a simple recipe 

75g margerine, 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of syrup. Melt these gently in the microwave. 

Add 225g plan in flour plus 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda and 1 tsp of more of your choice of spices. Mix and add oat milk/ the juice of an orange to bind as necessary to for a firming dough. 


Roll out and cut into shapes. 

Bake at 180C until cooked. They will still be slightly soft but leave on the baking tray. This completes the cooking and gives rise to the term biscuit meaning twice cooked.

Counting on … day 410 

17th December 2022

Delegates at the Biodiversity COP are working to define what it is to be ‘nature positive’. I would hope it means a default of working with rather than against the natural environment wherever possible. One of the Guardian correspondents commented that little is being said about how we as individuals can be ‘nature positive’, adding “Dietary changes, for example, is one of the most significant things people reading this could do to reduce their impact on biodiversity, namely cutting meat consumption.”