The various ingredients of an average Christmas lunch may have traveled a total of 24,000 miles by the time they get to your plate. So this year why not have a fresh, locally produced, traditional Christmas lunch that is good for the environment and good for the local economy?
At PJ taste we always consider the provenance of our supplies and Christmas seems a good time to re-examine this. Our special Christmas menus are tasty and can be served at a variety of exciting city centre venues, from the intimate and exclusive PJ taste@Site Canteen to happening bars such as the Bowery. We’ve also organised some traditional Christmas lunches at theTechnology Centre, Catcliffe on the 9th and 16th of December at a recession busting £7.95 for 3 courses!
So by now well on the way to a sustainable meal here are 5 top tips to help the planet:
1. Buy local, seasonal, winter vegetables (these include sprouts, carrots, cabbage, leeks, onions, parsnips, turnip, potatoes and nuts such as walnuts and chestnuts). Support your local organic farmer and farmers’ market. To find your nearest farmers market on the internet look at click here. I notice that this useful guide does not include poor old Sheffield so here’s a special listing of Sheffields food markets and events. I can’t leave this without a quick pick your own plug – the countryside is full of interesting ingredients and to forage somehow connects us even more to the root of the issue. Ask for theRiver Cottages hedgerow book for Christmas to get a good slice of foraging inspiration.
2. Look for traditional breeds of sheep, beef or poultry, raised naturally and locally. Ask your butcher where the meat comes from. If you choose a turkey go for a free-range organic one or try a natural alternative like venison. Try the excellent Whirlow Hall Farm Trust and contribute to a great and deserving charity at the same time.
3. If you can’t buy local, choose Fairtrade, organic fruit, nuts and chocolate. Buy presents fromFrooly championing local independent retailers.
4. Check your bottle of wine to see if the cork is real. To make real corks not a single tree is cut down – just a small part of the bark is removed, leaving the tree alive. In fact insisting on real cork helps maintain one of the most environmentally friendly industries possible.
5. Avoid disposable items on the Christmas table and buy produce with the least packaging. Remember to gather up and recycle everything from bottles and cans to wrapping paper and Christmas crackers. And don’t forget the hungry birds in your garden who would enjoy their own Christmas lunch of British seeds!
Good luck all with your Christmas shopping – one more plug our hampers are great!