Cookbook author and food writer, Rosie Birkett, has a lot to say about organic food. "We are all on this planet together, and the food choices we make have a profound impact on not only our future, but that of generations to come," she tell us.
Fruit, vegetables and meat that are grown, reared and harvested without the use of man-made pesticides and fertilisers, (certain strains of which have been linked to the drastically declining populations of bees and other pollinators) organic produce is, erm, produced in an old school way.
Here's the The Soil Association BOOM Awards ambassador's sustainable cooking ideas.
Say "no" to waste
Rosie's a master of the clever re-imagining of ingredients. "If herbs look like they're getting sad at the bottom of the fridge I'll blitz them up into a salsa verde – I'll do a fridge audit every few days and ban myself from buying new ingredients until I've used up what I've got in," she says. "In a world where so much food is wasted, I feel like I'd be failing as a cook not to make that effort, plus as someone who's grown her own food, I know what goes into getting food onto the plate, and I don't want to waste it."
Entertain without going overboard
Panic buying way too much food that never gets eaten is the classic move when you have people round for dinner. But here's a fun solution. "Throw a dinner party every month or so where you use up all the food you've got lurking in your fridge/freezer/store cupboard," turning your nearly dead bits into something enjoyable.
Can't believe it's been a whole three years since we hoisted festoon lighting, covered long tables with linen, wild flowers and sharing platters and threw the #alotonherplate summer supper club for my cookbook shoot. Such a magical, twinkly night full of food, friends and fun. More pics like this a recipes in my book, A Lot On Her Plate, published by @hardiegrantuk. 📸 by @helencathcart #supperclub #feasts #styling #gatherings #seasonalfeasts
Have a crack at foraging
Just don't go hunting in your neighbour's garden, guys. "I'd start off by going on a guided walk, because you really do need to know what you're doing when you're eating wild food," says Rosie. "But, there are certain things that are really easy to identify, like elderflower and wild garlic that you can start off with. As a rule I would stay completely away from mushrooms until you've learned all there is to know as they can kill you if you pick the wrong ones."
Enjoy the summer's glut
"I always have an organic veg box scheme and at this time of year – there are so many amazing ingredients about to cook with. I can't get enough of organic tomatoes and am basically living off those and courgettes at the moment," Rosie says.
Get connected to nature
"Nature is all around us, even in cities," Rosie says. "Seek out a green space in your city, maybe have a go at growing. I don't have a garden but grow herbs and salad leaves on my balcony in boxes."
Respect how food is grown
When it comes to eating sustainably, Rosie says that: "It's about knowing that the raw ingredients I'm using have been grown in fertile, natural soils, in a way that promotes and supports a healthy eco-system, food system, the planet and those all-important bees. It's about choosing products that are better for animals, wildlife and the planet."
The Soil Association Boom awards are the UK's only dedicated organic awards, celebrating all the businesses, producers and brands working so hard to produce food as it should be.
For further information view soilassociation.org