Lazy Vegan Recipe: Nutty Tofu Coconut Curry with Barley and Cumin Kale Crisp

You know how it goes. You get home tired, grumpy and hungry, yet hankering for something a little tastier than beans on toast (again!). This was me last night, when I got in from work and was fully prepared to dive into my travelling savings and treat myself to a takeaway, whilst lying in bed watching back to back episodes of Grand Designs.

But, reminding myself that the £10 I could spend for one curry takeaway at home, could set me up for several (far more authentic) ones whilst in India, I opted for fast track concoction. And this yummy dish is what I came up with in less than 30 minutes (including distracted glances at Kevin Cloud’s gushing over an eco build in Wales..). As always, I used up whatever I had at home and I encourage you to experiment and do the same, but it gives you an idea of what you can knock up in no time!

Continue reading Lazy Vegan Recipe: Nutty Tofu Coconut Curry with Barley and Cumin Kale Crisp

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Earth Day: My favourite spots for reflecting on the world

Happy Earth Day everyone! I know, I know there seems to be a national or global recognition day for most things, but you really can’t ignore a day which is dedicated to this beautiful planet. Even Google has a cool graphic to mark the occasion!

Today, I thought I would celebrate by sharing 10 of my favourite spots on this beautiful planet – both natural and man made – all of which inspire me to keep on my green living journey and remind me what we could loose if we don’t behave ourselves. 

1. Mission Bay, Auckland, New Zealand Photo(40)

Clear blue water, white sand and views out toward the volcanic Rangitoto Island – it’s hard to believe that the modern city of Auckland was build around this stunning exotic bay. Earth at its best.

2. White Cliffs, East Sussex, England 

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This picture was taken in Seaford, but all across this coastline the white cliffs are both powerful and serene; welcoming you to look out to the sea or back toward land in reflection. I’ve spend many a day chilling on these cliffs contemplating the world.

 

3. Minnack Theatre, Penzance, Cornwall 

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What better way to marvel at both natural and man made beauty than watching a theatre production whilst overlooking the stunning Cornwall coast? With views toward the Atlantic and to Sennen Cove (prettiest beach on Earth) this theatre was chiseled into the rocks to create a quirky place to watch the human stories we love to create and share. Continue reading Earth Day: My favourite spots for reflecting on the world

Creating human warming for the love of communities

As Most of you know, in my day job I work at a very inspiring environmental charity –  the Eden Project – on a community campaign called The Big Lunch.  I’m very passionate about the project, which is all about connecting people and creating a sense of community spirit locally.

I try not to harp on about my job too much, but this weekend I’m working on a very exciting collaboration between The Big Lunch and the awesome Climate Coalition on their For The Love of campaign which I think you lazy green beans might be interested in. All weekend on Twitter we want to get people talking about what they love in their communities, and seek to protect from the effects of climate change. All you need to do is share a photo of what you love about where you live, with the hashtag #fortheloveof.

But what do street parties have to do with sustainability? 

The Big Lunch –the UK’s annual get-together for neighbors – encourages people to sit down together on the first Sunday every June to share food and conversation, as a means to promote community spirit. But it’s more than just a street party full of trifles, trestle tables and bunting. People are the key ingredient. Those taking part begin to create friendlier communities in which they share more; from conversation and ideas, to skills and resources.

BIG LUNCH, SPLOTT, CARDIFF, 01/06/2014The UK’s award winning environmental charity and tourist attraction, the Eden project, seeded the idea of The Big Lunch in 2009  with the hope of creating stronger, more sustainable communities. It’s about recognising that, whilst individual responses to environmental issues – such as household recycling and conscious purchasing – are important factors in tackling climate change, the power of collective action cannot be underestimated. When people come together to share ideas, resources and skills, they are in effect becoming more sustainable. The Big Lunch calls it human warming, and last year 4.83 million people got involved to enjoy a taste of it! Continue reading Creating human warming for the love of communities

Bourgeois Boheme: From Shoe Apathy to Shoe Passion

For those of you who have ever met me in person, you’ll know that I am the least fashionable person out there. I take the ethos of reduce, reuse and recycle to heart when it comes to clothes; and prefer a rummage in a charity shop rather than a credit card binge on the highstreet. This serves three main purposes:

Firstly, I don’t contribute to the throwaway fashion economy, in which you can buy a whole outfit for less than the person who made it earns in a year. Secondly, and rather vainly, I don’t have to feel old and frumpy in the latest fashions; choosing instead to stick to my 90s grunge look which has served me well for the majority of my 20s. Lastly, and most lazily of all, I don’t have a clue when it comes to “ethical fashion” and prefer to hide away from having to actively research the rabbit warren which is the clothes and shoe industry.

If only Vivienne Westwood could come shopping around Truro with me, and help me find a bargainous green outfit which makes me feel 3 stone lighter. But alas! The trains getting down here are a bloody nightmare. But even the most clueless of us occasionally fall in love. And when I fall in love, I can become pretty wistful and dreamy. Meet the Amanda Blue – the most beautiful shoe I have seen in my life. Continue reading Bourgeois Boheme: From Shoe Apathy to Shoe Passion

A Buddhist (and Axl Rose) Perspective on Attachment

I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in saying that the beginning of any adventure is generally filled with excitement, intrigue and enthusiasm. Whether it’s a new job, relationship or home – or simply a different way of cooking potatoes – you really can’t beat that honeymoon period of trying something new and sharing what you learn along the way. The uneasy, yet hopeful journey of a road less travelled (at least by you…) is the best part of any new venture, along with the positive intentions and habit changes we all insist will follow!

But as the wise and beautiful Axl Rose once sang: “nothin’ lasts forever, even cold November rain”! And oh how wise and reflective that rock God is! Now, I’m pretty sure these lyrics were intended to provide a positive encouragement to an otherwise heart-breaking situation, but I can’t help but relate these words to the inevitable destination for most things in life. Situations begin and end. We are born and we die. It rains and then it stops (if we’re lucky). Life goes on in a circular of starts and finishes, in which no one factor is truly the creator of either state. To quote a slightly gentler but none the less emotional Elton classic: “It’s the circle of life, and it moves us all”. Continue reading A Buddhist (and Axl Rose) Perspective on Attachment

A Vegans Guide to Avoiding Calcium, Iron & B12 Supplements

It’s often assumed that vegans generally survive off a varied cocktail of supplements and super foods in order to be truly healthy. True, any form of veggie eating needs a level of awareness to ensure you get everything you need for a balanced diet; but generally this is no different for meat, egg or dairy eaters too! In fact, it’s a myth that by eating animal products you are someone how immune to deficiencies; especially when your meat or dairy consumption actually decreases the amount of veggies you eat as a result.

In fact, some studies have found that whilst vegans may be prone to B12, Calcium and Iodine deficiencies; an average no vegetarian diet is not only deficient in calcium and iodine, but vitamin C, vitamin E, fiber, folate, and magnesium as well! So vitamin deficiencies aren’t always just a veggies problem.

That said, when choosing to cut down – or out – animal products for a healthier lifestyle, there are still a few key things worth keeping an eye on; and they really don’t need to involve supplements. In fact, as a lazy (and very forgetful) vegan, I am terrible at remembering to take supplements at all, and am proof that you can live a healthy vegan lifestyle without popping the pills!

Disclaimer: advice which follows is based on my own personal experience of veganism over the last year; in which regular tests have confirmed I have no vitamin deficiencies. I am NOT a nutritionist by any means but I do love to eat!

Continue reading A Vegans Guide to Avoiding Calcium, Iron & B12 Supplements