The cooking Journal

Posts in 'What's happening'

National Growing for Wellbeing Week
For me gardening is the perfect antidote to a hectic life that seems to be increasingly dominated by social media and technology, it’s a simple way of claiming back my place on this earth, of re-establishing a connection with my roots.
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Kumud Gandhi- The Original Spice Girl?
Today I am sitting opposite Kumud at the island in the centre of her impressively proportioned kitchen, looking out through the patio doors to her beautiful garden. This is not only a family kitchen but also home to her cookery school, The Cooking Academy. As I soak up the atmosphere the air is redolent with the comforting aroma of warming spices.
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Nick Coffers Weekend Kitchen with Kumud Gandhi

Here are the latest podcasts from Kumud Gandhi's appearances on Nick Coffers 'Weekend Kitchen' show on BBC Three Counties Radio. Kumud discusses recipes from her book, from festive specials to classic comforts. Find all the links below:


3rd March 2019- Mixed Lentil and Pulses Medley, Chicken Tikka Masala, Aloo Gobi, Lime Possets with mango and mint salad


27th January 2019- Spicy Ceylonese Chicken Curry, Pan fried paneer in cashew nut sauce


16th December 2018- Lamb Raan, Christmas Samoas with Cranberry Dipping Sauce, Makha Raja Tiger Prawns and Spiced roast potatoes


14th October 2018- Agni Chili Wings


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Valentines Day Italian Masterclass at The Cooking Academy

Valentines Day Italian Masterclass at The Cooking Academy...

How does cooking and relationships go together you might ask?

Well it’s a bit like salt & pepper, champagne and strawberries or even a knife and fork!   Cooking together can definitely spark excitement in the kitchen; working with each other to follow a new recipe, tasting as you go, creating delicious new flavour combinations. No need to remember to make reservations, shout over the loud music or strain to see your food in the dim lighting. You can turn your home into the hottest and coziest new restaurant and even keep your slippers on! Cooking together allows couples to connect and communicate in different ways, and as we say in our motto you can Inspire, Discover, Enjoy!

Join us this Valentine’s Day to learn to cook the most romantic beautiful Italian meal, here at The Cooking Academy for our Valentines inspired Italian Masterclass Evening event.


Not only will you learn how to cook a delicious meal together, but you will learn new culinary terms and techniques. Unsure what Al dente is? Sick of soggy sauces? Maybe your partner knows the answer, maybe not! You can both learn together from an expert Chef!


Communication is as key as it is in cooking as it is in love, arguments can simmer and efforts can feel wasted. But we’ll show you how to smooth things over with the perfect sauce recipe and discover the perfect pomodoro or arrabbiata for some added spice!


When you’ve finished getting down and dirty with the past making lesson You can sit down and enjoy your hard work and appreciate the joint effort that went into your delicious meal.


Join The Cooking Academy on Valentine’s Day for a fun filled evening, learning to cook the food of love! 6:30pm-9pm. An Italian Masterclass to get stuck into with your other half. Enjoy delicious hand-made pasta and sauces all made from scratch and a glass of wine or two! Only room for 4 couples so hurry and BOOK NOW! 1 Ticket admits 2 people and are only £149.


Contact katherine@thecookingacemy.co.uk or call 01923 778880 to Book your space.
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Frightened by fearful looking fruit? Think again…

Are you put off by protruding parsnips? Or frightened by fearful looking fruit? Think again…

Did you know that more than a third of farmed fruit and vegetables never reach supermarket shelves because they are misshapen, unsymmetrical and discoloured? In support of Zero Waste Week, (3rd September-7th September) we want to share with you why this happens and what we can do to make a difference.

A recent study from the University of Edinburgh has shown that more than 50 million tons of fruit and vegetables are discarded each year. This monumental waste is principally due to strict regulations set out by supermarkets and the government. Produce may be rejected if it fails to comply with EU laws, as well as the supermarkets’ own strict standards of what is visually appealing to customers.

Is your squash too small? After harvest, produce is sorted according to size. Tons of fruit and veg are rejected for being too big, small or misshapen. Supermarkets want symmetrical produce to fit neatly and evenly into display cabinets, any shape otherwise is deemed unacceptable. They also want produce that looks beautiful, meaning scarred or discoloured fruit and veg go to waste. Despite having the same taste and nutrients as ‘perfect’ produce, those considered misshapen will have to wait for a juicer to show interest, or risk being binned. Stephen Porter of University of Edinburgh’s School of GeoSciences, said,  “Encouraging people to be less picky about how their fruit and vegetables look could go a long way to cutting waste, reducing the impact of food production on the climate, and easing the food supply chain.”

As well as unsightly produce being disregarded, the problem also lies within the overproduction of food.  Farmers contracted to supermarkets typically grow more food than obliged, to allow for a proportion that would be deemed unfit to sell. In order to tackle food waste, supermarkets must change their relationships with suppliers. A number of supermarkets are working with WRAP, ‘Waste and Resource Action Programme’ to do just that. WRAP have started a campaign ‘The Courtauld Commitment of 2025’, that gives the opportunity for all industry partners across the supply chain to come together and make a real step change in tackling food waste. Their aim is to cut the waste and greenhouse gas emissions associated with food and drink by at least one-fifth per person in ten years.

Whilst supermarkets are doing their fair share; you at home can do the same. Support the companies fighting for the rights of ugly produce!  Companies include Oddbox, Riverford, Able & Cole, Waitrose, Morrisons, and many more!

So ‘lettuce’ stand up and take ‘chard’ of our future! Join the fight against food waste and make your mark for zero waste week!






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