Spelt Focaccia

Gavin WrenBaking, Recipes, Spelt & ancient grains

Tender, fresh, homemade Italian spelt focaccia, studded with rosemary sprigs and drizzled with olive oil. The job of baking bread at home may seem like an onerous task, but when it produces such beautifully tender, flavoursome bread, the ability to bake your own bread begins to feel more like a special privilege.
Twenty-six recipes. That's how many you'll find on my blog which feature spelt flour. With the inclusion of this recipe for spelt focaccia it's a total of twenty-seven on the list. Having created so many spelt recipes, I've become a bit of an expert on this ancient grain and today's recipe has drawn on that knowledge. This fresh, tender, aromatic homemade Italian spelt focaccia, studded with rosemary sprigs and drizzled with olive oil is simply beautiful and a treasure to adorn your table.

Yes, Italian Food, Again.
I love good Italian food, it holds a highly seductive allure for me, because when it's good, it's magical. The beauty is often in the simplicity of using great ingredients, then treating them with incredible respect. Unfortunately, it has historically seen some shocking handling at the mercy of the UK restaurant trade and via the over-spiced, over-flavoured... come and read more...

Bullied Bloggers

Gavin WrenBlogging

Bullied Bloggers
The State of the Blogosphere.
Bloggers are a funny bunch. There are nepotistic posses, crews and gangs who give each other props, RTs and likes. There are mavericks, out there to speak their truth and to hell with what anyone else thinks. There's love & hate, lies & truth. We represent an unregulated, free to enter world, where anyone with access to the internet can add their junk to the pile, or put the icing on the cake.

The low barrier to entry of blogging makes it seem like the Wild West at times. There's no regulation or official body and many of the blogger groups, collectives or award organisers are heavily sponsored by industry, or highly partisan towards a certain niche, meaning their message is ethically dubious and should be heeded with caution. I'm struggling to think of organisations in the blogosphere that are genuinely impartial. However, there is... come and read more...

Indian Sprouted Bean Salad with Avocado

Gavin WrenRecipes, Salads, Vegan, Vegetarian

Here's a spicy, zingy Indian style sprouted bean salad which has been my default lunch option for a few weeks, because it ticks all my boxes for a great lunch. It's simple to make (once you've got the sprouts), it's ridiculously tasty with the combination of seeds, spices, lemon and chilli, plus it's got a big tick next to all the major nutrients we need. All this alongside it being completely vegan, it really couldn't be more versatile and all satisfying.
Here's a spicy, Indian style sprouted bean salad which has been my default lunch option for the last few weeks, because it ticks all my 'great lunch' boxes. It's simple to make (once you've got the sprouts), ridiculously tasty with the combination of seeds, spices, lemon and chilli, plus it's got a big tick next to all the major nutrients we need. Alongside it being completely vegan, it really couldn't be more versatile and all satisfying.

Social Sprouts
Sprouts say one thing to me. Brussels. I'm not talking about the cosmopolitan city, lying a mere 121 minutes away from London St Pancras, rather the bitter green orbs of distaste which I was deigned not to like well before one had ever crossed the threshold of my trap. Society seemed constructed for little children who Don't Like Sprouts. Perhaps it's their bitter flavour, or perhaps there's an entire social... come and read more...

Eating Meat – Fifty Shades of Grey

Gavin WrenFood Opinion Pieces, The World of Food

As I ponder the question of whether I should, or whether I can continue Eating meat, I see it's not a question of absolutes, but one of relatives and the fifty shades of grey that they encompass.
Can I Eat Meat?
At the beginning of 2017, I wrote a blog post, asking the question "Should I eat meat?". The motivation for this question came from a desire to seek moral congruity, meaning that I felt my actions as a human were not aligned with my sense of morality. I don't like the idea of inflicting pain upon a living creature, I'd hate to see my dog in pain, yet I'm happy for other living creatures to be killed, simply to provide my food. It's clear to see the contradiction here.

More recently, I've come across the psychological term 'cognitive dissonance', which refers to the ability of people to hold two or more conflicting opinions. In my case, I hold the opinion that inflicting pain on animals is wrong... come and read more...

Mango Lassi – Dairy Free

Gavin WrenDrinks, Recipes

Mango season is the time to make a Mango Lassi, the traditional Indian yoghurt drink which is as refreshing as the morning dew and perfect for a hot summers day. I’ve included the option to make this dairy free as well!
There is an abundance of mangoes in the world as the fruit comes into season across South Asia, flooding the streets of London with it's sweet, sweet flesh. When life throws you lemons, you make lemonade. When life throws you mangoes, you make mango lassi.

Mangolia.
Mango season is firmly upon us. This is massive news in my swathe of East London, the entire area goes mango crazy for a few months, seeing shops transform themselves from DVD stores, perfume shops or clothes retailers into mango traders. Any shop whose mango range numbers less than 6 different boxes is passed over as amateur as the street buzzes with people sniffing, prodding and squeezing the mangolian landscape whilst weighing up prices between vendors. My naive innocence of the way of the mango was highlighted last year when I asked to buy just one. The vendor chuckled, explaining I needed... come and read more...

Cinnamon Roasted Squash with Lentils

Gavin WrenRecipes, Side dishes, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

The divine pairing of butternut squash and cinnamon sit so beautifully together in the amazing plant based, vegetarian and vegan recipe, it would be easy to assume that God himself had blessed us with their co-operation. A tray of simple cinnamon roasted squash, mixed up with a mash of garlicky lentils, is incredibly simple and simply incredible. It creates the perfect foundation for a meat free meal or a simple vegetable side dish.
The divine pairing of butternut squash and cinnamon sit so beautifully together, it would be easy to assume that God himself had blessed us with their co-operation. A tray of simple cinnamon roasted squash, mixed up with a mash of garlicky lentils, is incredibly simple and simply incredible. The discovery of this pairing hallowed a eureka moment for me, they sit so perfectly that this recipe needs no more than a hungry mouth and a willing fork to accompany it.

Discrete Divinity.
There are pairings in the world which fit together so perfectly, it were as if God or some other mystical being set them as a challenge for us in life, to see if we could discover these secret little puzzles. Like the easter eggs hidden by the developers in computer games, the little puzzles, rewards, cheats or shortcuts, buried within the fabric of the game... come and read more...