|Pizzettas, ham and peach, made by DD from scratch (including base)|
But I think much of that was rubbish. She microwaved ready made pancakes (!) but didn’t moan that that was preparation for example. I think her ‘lazy stupidity’ was enhanced for the camera and mightily played up by the director. If you haven’t watched it you can probably catch it here.
I don’t believe the mum in this episode was really lazy either. Her children and her house were spotless and the children well behaved and polite, that doesn’t happen by chance, and both parents worked too. I think she didn’t know how to cook, and laughed it off as she was embarrassed.They were a really nice family, and despite the initial desire to slap Kate I did warm to her, her husband and their three children.
I was more interested in what Gregg Wallace didn’t say or show the family. The meals they were shown how to cook were all variations on what they were eating already so not especially healthy, mainly just cheaper and nicer. That makes sense though as you need to change eating habits gradually, there is no point in saying ‘bin the chips, eat quinoa’ that just won’t work. But I do wish he’d talked more about nutritional balance, vegetables, starches, fats etc and which foods contained which things.
There was also much talk of saving money on the food bill, but no discussion as to the fuel bill. Would 45 minutes for cheap potato chips in the oven impact more than the original plan of oven chips that take 15 minutes for example? The same for the pizzas shown later. I don’t know the answer, maybe it would make little impact but I would have liked it to have been considered.
|Biscuits made at home|
Oddly there seemed to be no discussion of buying fruit or veg at a greengrocer’s (very odd as Chris Bavin is a greengrocer). We use a local one when we can, all the food is, again, packaging free, and has no use by dates, it’s a lesson in what fruit and veg should look like. Also fruit and veg bought in season can still be cheaper than trying to stick to the same fruit and vegetables all year round, a local farm shop can be cheaper for the vegetables that are in season if you are lucky enough to have a farm nearby.
Some ideas for recipes in using things that are about to go out of date would have been good too – the old stand-by of banana cake for example for those suddenly black bananas, the idea that you can cook and freeze a meal or blanche and freeze vegetables.
One thing the mum, Kate, said at the end was that she planned cooking on Sunday and freezing meals for the week. Good on her! And I admired their proposal for meal planning. I think she could also save money, have fun and improve her kitchen skills by baking biscuits with the children, perfect for lunch boxes and a great winter afternoon pastime.
I won’t be watching the programme again, I don’t feel I learned any thing, the presenters took a long time to really say nothing much as the advice on butter vs margarine wasn’t even particularly current. (new research which looked at 50 studies involving more than one million people found there was no evidence that saturated fat was bad for health. ) But for anyone that is out there thinking the a Findus Crispy Pancake is the height of sophistication and that a poached egg on toast is a ‘meal that need a lot of cooking’ then I think this show could help them to branch out a little.
|My favourite cook book|
And the simplest option of all? Buy a simple cookery book.
Did you watch the show? What did you think? And will it make you change your eating or shopping habits?