Our Kitchen: More About Us and How We Operate In It!
This is a space that will be updated as we feel it’s appropriate, but hopefully we have covered all of the bases at the moment! Yes, there is quite of bit of information, but it’s easier to find our perspective here than through nearly two-hundred blog posts!
We hope that you will find it helpful in seeing what influence and standard we use to cook and prepare foods and hopefully it will create some cooking ease when/if you prepare our recipes.
Our Ethos & Design
- We think that everyone should be able to make informed choices about their health, including on how to access and prepare healthy (and affordable) meals! Everyone should be given the opportunity to cook easy and nutritious meals from scratch, regardless of their diet, religion, or any other personal circumstance.
- We love cooking and living a healthy lifestyle, but don’t profess to know everything. As we’ve mentioned, are backgrounds are varied and we’re not professional chefs, food stylists or photographers.
- You’ll find a lot of our meals look ‘homely’ but hopefully always appetising. Without professional photography and/or always having access to adequate lighting, our pictures will never look ‘chefy, perfect or styled’.
- Everyone should respect everyone else’s skill levels, cooking preferences, diet, religion and/or ‘yum factor’! So sorry, there is no food snobbery, belittling, political debates or describing ours or anyone else’s food as gross here!
- We always try our best and will always do anything we can to help!
Chef Skill Level
- Our recipes (apart from a few) are set to an easy skill level. Meaning everyone can have a go; for some, you might complete recipes faster than us (especially if you have loads of kitchen helpers!), for others it might take a bit longer, but that can be the case with any recipe.
- Like all recipes, you might come across cooking techniques and/or recipes that might take a bit longer than you are normally used to (e.g. due to the length of prep or having to multi task). Don’t let this scare you! Cooking is not a race to the finish line. Sometimes the best meals are the ones that you have prepared with love and patience; this is particularly true when it comes to baking!
- We always try our best to explain cooking preparations, what to do with leftovers and/or food storage and provide handy tips to help make your cooking experiences a positive one.
- Great chefs are not made overnight. If at first you don’t succeed, try again and then some more! There are a lot of recipes that don’t make it on here for exactly that reason- they’re still being revisited and perfected. Cooking takes practice and developing recipes can take even longer, but it doesn’t mean that we should give up after one, two (or even three!) cooking disasters or mistakes.
- We always indicate a serving size because one, it would be irresponsible not to and two, most of our meals have been designed with meal prep in mind. We rarely submit a recipe that says serves one or two. However, it doesn’t mean that you cannot reduce the portions and adapt it to a serve one, subsequently making the prep (and maybe cooking time) shorter.
- We try to use standard kitchen measurements (1 cup, 1 tsp etc.) but sometimes it’s just not possible. We don’t always count the number of spoonful’s we’ve placed onto a kitchen scale. Where possible we will try to give numerous conversions. If in doubt just ask as not all conversions are like for like.
- Some of our recipes include the use of kitchen gadgets; where possible we try to offer an alternative. If you get stuck, just ask and we will see what we can suggest as a suitable alternative.
- We always encourage people to try different cuisines. Even if you haven’t enjoyed our specific take on a recipe (it’s OK!), at least you can go away and adapt it to suit your specific tastes and say e.g. “hey, you know what, I actually love Mexican food”.
- We always encourage people to make things from scratch.
- We always encourage meal prep and advise seasonal eating when we can; we should all look to save money and time, reduce food wastage and our carbon foot print and of course eat healthily!
- We love cooking tried and true recipes, but also enjoy trying to think outside the box! But that’s a great attribute to have; not everyone has the same palate and the world needs more than one variety of e.g. tomato soup on Pinterest!
- All of are recipes are plant-based (original or adapted), but a lot of them can be adapted to suit other diets.
- Although we do not follow a gluten-free (GF) diet, we do offer this option because coeliac disease is a real condition (and some people do suffer from gluten intolerance). Also, we’re not GF flour ‘baking’ experts but do our best when preparing specific baked goods. We can appreciate that not all GF flours (and flour combinations) are like-for like and therefore try to access the most cheap and versatile varieties for user ease here.
- A lot of our freezing guidelines are educated guesstimates because a lot of what we cook never makes it into the freezer! However, we always follow safe refrigeration guidance in accordance to what has been cooked, e.g. storing and reheating rice.
- A lot of our recipes are set up to show step-by-step cooking instruction that can be viewed on a laptop or tablet, but we are now incorporating more print-easy options
-With the exception of a few, our recipes tend not to include expensive and/or ‘trendy’ ingredients. Yes, this can be subjective as we all have different budgets etc., but generally you will not find us using a lot of ingredients bought exclusively in a health-food shop and/or online. We opt for things found in standard UK supermarkets and/or ethnic or local shops.
-We love using new ingredients and of course have our favourites! If you do come across something that you are unfamiliar with, just ask. In the same breath, if you want to substitute an ingredient or are thinking about omitting it from a recipe, just ask. Our recipes are generally fairly flexible, but sometimes it may not be appropriate; occasionally omitting and/or substituting ingredients will generate a completely new recipe and/or flavour experience. Likewise whenever we try out other people’s recipes, we will adjust things to our personal tastes, especially when it comes to the use of: spices, seeds and/or some herbs; chilli, ginger, turmeric, fennel, cinnamon, cumin, tarragon, dill etc. can really pack a punch!
We Follow Healthy Eating Guidance (well, obviously!)
….Because everyone should try to Eat2Health – there’s nothing shameful in it!
- Being mindful of our added salt, sugar and saturated fat consumption:
-Moderating our ‘added salt’. We always suggest that people should taste and season their dishes to taste, but we should all be mindful of the fact that a maximum of 6g salt/d or less is the recommended healthy eating advice. That’s why we flavour our meals with loads of herbs, spices and/or other seasonings as a result!
-Generally, if we use oil (for frying/roasting/baking etc.) it’s 5ml/person. E.g. If a recipe says cook with 30ml of cook, it’s because it serves six people. However, we always suggest that you can ‘steam-fry’ or use a low-fat cooking oil as a method to help reduce the meals overall added fat content (particularly our saturated fats!).
-Do not promote the heavy use of ‘added’ sugar, especially refined sugar. Which is why there is a higher ratio of savoury recipes vs. sweet recipes on this blog. If you need some more info, we’ve previously talked about diet and sugar here, here, here and more recently about ‘free sugars‘.
- Incorporating as many ‘whole’ veggies (and fruit) into our diet as possible!
- Everything should be consumed in moderation; you can still eat ‘healthy’ foods and be unhealthy.
- Fresh over processed, but always be mindful of your food labels.
- Eating wholesome, balanced and regular meals and snacks (with of course healthy and mindful portion sizes!).
- Keeping hydrated!
- As we follow a plant-based diet, you’ll find that we are always chopping away in our kitchen! Some of you might have kitchen gadgets that will make this process quicker or like us, you have been cooking for a long time and have developed some precision and speed. Be patient with yourself; it might currently take you twenty minutes to chop a carrot, but you will get faster with practice. We promise!
- With all these veggies, legumes and pulses there is fibre. We eat sooo many veggies (more so than fruit); we are probably eating around 40-50g of fibre/day! However this is our ‘norm’ and we are used to it. If you are new to a plant-based diet, or maybe are trying to increase your general fruit and veggie intake and/or have an underlying medical condition, you might want to pace yourself…or it could result in a fibre overload! You should increase your fibre intake slowly, to avoid experiencing excess, gas, cramps and/or bloating.
- We love to receive feedback, positive or constructive as it’s the only way we can grow and hopefully develop new ideas and skills as a result! If you have any questions or comments about our recipes or any other information found here, please drop us a line, as we can’t help problem solve if we are unaware of any said problems in the first place!
So we hope that you enjoy your time here and would like to wish everyone a happy, healthy and positive cooking experience! 🙂