Happy ‘Hippy Chick’ Food
Yesterday I was present for the ribbon cutting at Prospect Community Woodland. My dad is a Malvern town councillor, and this particular project falls within his Ward.
A community group is clearing and replanting and generally opening up to the public what was previously a derelict site – complete with anti-social and illegal behaviour. From an outsider’s perspective there’s not much to see there yet, but the group has done some very hard work in clearing the site and making it safe for visitors, and have some great momentum for moving forward and making it an inviting public space. The land is owned by the health centre it overlooks, and once of the focuses of the community group is to use it as a site for respite and relaxation, and for it to bring the health benefits of outdoor space to the local area. This project is part of the larger, incredibly ambitious Malvern Community Forest, which aims to “create and manage recreational and functional forest with a centre for the educational and environmental benefit of the community in the Malvern Chase”. It will be interesting to see how it develops.
We couldn’t stay beyond the ribbon cutting, but the group were having a ‘bring and share’ lunch and some musical members were gearing up to provide the entertainment.
It made me think about other occasions I have been to, and how good the food usually is. At grass roots events, particularly those with a permaculture/ conservation theme, the food always seems to be a harmonious mixture of vegetarian/ vegan dishes that cater to everyone’s dietary requirements and are (but shouldn’t be) surprisingly tasty. Garden Organic events, particularly, are always well catered.
Whilst the Brit tradition is for picnics, and the current trend seems to be a picture perfect version with printed wellies and expensive scarves, neatly cut sandwiches and pastel macarons, they don’t do a lot for me. I’d rather have the alternative version, with the loose flowing trousers, tattoos and quinoa salads.
We don’t eat like that at home, and if I were to attend a ‘bring and share’ event I would be slightly stumped as to what to make and take. I’m thinking it would be nice to have a few recipes like that in my arsenal.
So what would you make and share? Are there any memorable dishes you’ve had on one of these occasions? They don’t have to be vegetarian or vegan, just a bit off the usual track of quiche/ sandwiches/ crisps and pasta salad.
Are there particular recipe books that are good for this kind of thing that you’d recommend? All ideas are welcome 🙂