Just over a couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of being invited to a special meal with Love Food Hate Waste and Great British Bake Off 2014 champion Nancy Birtwhistle, at Borough Market’s Cookhouse. This event was part of the Use Your Loaf campaign, showing how people at home can get the most out of their bread.
Every day 24 million slices of bread go to waste from UK homes, which is equivalent to 1.3 million loaves of bread every single day (!), and 18% of the population have been found to throw away bread without even opening it.
The event was all about showcasing what the Love Food Hate Waste campaign can do to help individuals across the UK, helping to make sure that everyone has all the information that they need, including tips, hints and recipes in order to make sure that no bread would need to go to waste.
The lovely Nancy Birtwhistle had prepared for us a three course meal for us to enjoy – not a bad start to a Monday morning. Each course contained bread as an ingredient, showing how bread can be used in other recipes besides for the average morning toast or lunchtime sandwiches.
The first course was her take on a Niçoise Salad. The classic Niçoise Salad is usually presented with black olives, but as a way to overcome her grandchildren’s dislike of them, Nancy instead incorporated the black olives within croutons. The crispy croutons were quite moreish and I hungrily tipped a few more onto my plate as extra portions of it was passed around the table.
Click here for Nancy’s simple yet impressive starter recipe.
The main course was as Nancy called it, her ‘money-saving’ Moussaka – the reason behind the name is that it contains meat and lentils in equal portions. And instead of the conventional topping, she substituted this with bread. When I think of moussaka, I always imagine it to be quite a rich and heavy dish, but this was an exceptionally light and clearly a much healthier option. This dish can also be made into a fully vegetarian dish by excluding the meat and doubling up on lentils.
For Nancy’s Thrifty Moussaka recipe, click here.
Dessert was a Summer Pudding, a quintessentially British dessert made with bread, but Nancy had made hers in a form of a terrine which was then sliced and topped with more berries and some cream. Pleasing to the eye as well as the tastebuds.
At the end of the meal, Nancy finally revealed her little ‘secret’ to us – that the bread that she had incorporated into the dishes was actually stale bread.
Most people have the assumption that stale bread means that it has ‘gone off’ or had gone mouldy, but in fact stale bread is a pretty versatile ingredient as demonstrated in some of the recipes.
I very rarely purchase bread for my home (for fear of the ‘Bread Monster’ in me that would consume it all in one go!), but for those of you that do, click here for some tips on how to make the most of your bakery products.
And here’s a little clip from the #UseYourLoaf campaign, where you will probably spot a few familiar faces…
So, think before you chuck that piece/loaf of bread into the bin – it could be the start of a deliciously creative recipe.
The Cheekster, signing out x