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Knowledge, Eat

This Month I’m Inspired By: The Use‘em Up

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Actually, that’s not strictly true. I’ve been inspired by the Use’em-Up since we were housebound last March, and the weekly food shop was suddenly forced to accommodate extra meals as breakfast lunch and dinner were all to be eaten en-famille around the kitchen table. That’s not even counting ingredients for Cake-of-the-Week; a lockdown staple which has outlived social distancing (if the current predictions at the time of writing are correct).

A combination of this shift in food quantity and the regular reading of fellow columnist Manda Tudge’s Carbon Chronicles has caused me to reflect on food waste and embark on a new regime of meal prep, now fondly referred to as ‘The Use‘em-Up’. And what an unexpected delight it has been; I now scorn sell-by dates and go purely by smell and texture. Sweaty ham? No thank you. Slightly hardened ham? Perfect for chopping into some droopy green beans, a tin of tomatoes and a few cloves of garlic for a Middle Eastern-inspired supper. A weekend roast no longer seems profligate for a family of three when I can enjoy it in the knowledge that at some point in the following week, we’ll be dining on a bastardised Chinese style chicken fried rice and lunching on chicken soup – aka Jewish penicillin.

Moreover – and perhaps this is its strongest selling point – Use‘em-Up helps relieve the tedium of deciding what to cook. It’s a daily challenge, my own private version of Ready Steady Cook, but instead of a shopping bag of random ingredients, I am forced to puzzle a delectable dinner out of half a packet of feta, a handful of soggy spinach and leftover rice. Sometimes I cheat and search up my disparate selection, adding the word ‘recipe’ on the end. A squeeze of lemon and a tin of chickpeas added to the above yielded Spanokorizo – or Greek Rice (the chickpeas were my attempt to bulk it out a bit so please don’t @ me). We might have been grounded in Oxford but our culinary adventures have taken us around the world.


Tue 1 Mar 2022

You Will See The Doctor Now

Star of Social and Mainstream Media, Dr Nighat Arif

When we were brainstorming ground-breaking women to interview for this issue, I knew who was first on my list to approach. Meeting again over Zoom, I start by apologising for the fact that, when we met, I had no idea ‘who she was’ and thankfully, she laughed…  

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Mon 16 May 2022

This weekend I had the pleasure of visiting Oxford’s brand-new Grounded Kitchen located on London Road, Headington. The Korean inspired eatery which specialises in nutrient-rich nourish

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Tue 10 May 2022


New service connecting people to local food retailers

A digital platform and delivery service that allows customers to shop online from local independent food retailers has launched in Chipping Norton and the surrounding region. 

Mon 2 May 2022

From Seeds to Squirrels

Richard Dawkins’ Flights of Fancy

This year’s instalment of KITE, the Oxford-based festival of music and ideas, will see British evolutionary biologist and prolific author Richard Dawkins take the stage. He will be discussing his latest book, Flights of Fancy, which explores all aspects of flight – human and animal.