Recipe book a ‘life-changer’ says Foodbank

Thanks to the generosity of the people of Aylsham, the North Norfolk Foodbank has received an early Christmas present to help its drive to feed people in crisis.

A cheque for £500 was presented to Peter Wenham, chair of the Cromer Food Bank Trustees. The money raised came from sales of Slow Food’s recipe book Canny Cooking and contributions from the group’s activities including the recent Food Festival which features the annual Festival Dinner, prepared, cooked and served by the students of Aylsham High School.

High School students take a bow at the Festival Dinner.

High School students take a bow at the Festival Dinner.

This year, the food bank network will have distributed more than two million emergency food parcels to people in crisis – 832,000 of these parcels went to children.

Peter Wenham, chair of the Cromer Food Bank Trustees, thanked Slow Food, for the “very generous” donation.

“The recipe book has transformed our relationship with our clients,” he said.

“With the book, we can explain to them how easy it is to use and it has changed their lives, particularly if they have children.

“Before, the parents relied on sandwiches or pot noodles and the like. Now, with the book, they are more confident in feeding their families with proper cooked meals.”

Cheque presentation to North Norfolk Foodbank at St Michael's Church, Aylsham.

Peter Wenham holds the cheque for £500 presented to him by Slow Food Aylsham chair, Patrick Prekopp (left) with Foodbank volunteers.

Slow Food Aylsham believes it is important for children to understand and engage with healthy, nutritious food from an early age.

At the Aylsham Show, we encouraged children to experience food through each of their five senses: seeing, hearing, smelling, touching, and tasting.

And, every year, students at Aylsham High School produce a restaurant-style, three-course dinner for the launch of the Aylsham Food Festival.

The school has a strong environmentally friendly ethos around local and seasonal food.
Janie Elwes, of the Food Preparation and  Nutrition department, says the students embrace this ethos.

“We have inherited a tradition of creating a local and seasonal produce event for Slow Food Aylsham which supported the students in their course work.  In recent years, there has been a change of curriculum which meant that we had to reduce the content, but Slow Food Aylsham have been supportive in us continuing with the event,” said Janie.

It is hoped that the ethos stays with the students and helps them when they leave school. But for others, that opportunity may not have been available.

The recipe book is primarily aimed at those who receive food parcels to get the best out of their rations and also to guide reluctant cooks with quick, simple and cheap recipes.

North Norfolk Foodbank is ordering reprints of Canny Cooking to distribute to its clients. And it is hoped that Slow Food will soon be involved with cookery sessions for those receiving food parcels and others in need.

Come and join us

  • To learn more about Slow Food Aylsham go to www.slowfoodaylsham.org.uk or email info@slowfoodaylsham.org.uk. And follow us on Facebook and Twitter @slowfoodaylsham.
  • Copies of the recipe book (£5) can be bought by emailing info@slowfoodaylsham.org.uk. It would make a great Christmas stocking-filler.