We were all blown away by your generosity and ultimate success of our Food Bank donations. Later this year we will be appealing for wash bags and toiletries for the Stroud Women’s Refuge, but in the meantime, here are some details for their latest fundraiser.
In the era of #MeToo and the Women’s Marches, domestic abuse is on the agenda and yet remains the crime hiding in plain sight in our communities. No respecter of age, race, class or circumstances, domestic abuse flourishes through silence, embarrassment and shame.
Orzo, giant couscous or even macaroni all work for this recipe. Add a handful or two of frozen petit pois with leftover meat (save the roast chicken bones for a lovely stock) and you'll have yourself a perfectly light and healthy supper. Frozen herbs work just as well as fresh.
750ml chicken stock
50g orzo pasta
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
2 celery sticks, finely chopped
100g cooked roast chicken, shredded
100g frozen peas
4 spring onions, finely chopped
30g fresh mint
1 Pour the chicken stock into a large saucepan and put over a high heat. Once boiling, add the orzo, garlic and celery. Allow this to cook for 10-12 minutes or until the pasta is completely cooked.
2 Add the shredded chicken, peas and spring onions. Heat through before adding the mint.
3 Serve with crusty bread or a mixed salad.
• Cook On A Shoestring by Sophie Wright (Kyle Books)
Chestnut and chorizo soup
I cannot believe that I have not cooked this soup before! Hiding in the pages of Moro The Cookbook by Sam and Sam Clark (Ebury Press), this warm soup combines some of the classic flavours of Spanish cooking to produce a comforting and mildly spicy meal in a bowl!
4 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, diced
1 medium carrot, diced
1 celery stick, diced
120g mild cooking chorizo, cut into 1cm cubes
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tsp ground cumin
1½ tsp fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
2 small dried red chillies, crushed
2 tomatoes, fresh or tinned, roughly chopped
500g cooked peeled chestnuts (fresh or vacuum-packed), roughly chopped, (I used two packets of vacuum packed chestnuts)
20 saffron threads, infused in 3-4 tbsp boiling water
1 litre water
Salt and black pepper
1 In a large saucepan heat the oil over a medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, chorizo and a pinch of salt and fry for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until everything caramelises and turns brown.
2 Now add the garlic, cumin, thyme and chilli and cook for 1 more minute, followed by the tomatoes and, after about 2 minutes, the chestnuts.
3 Give everything a good stir, then add the saffron-infused liquid, and the water, and simmer for about 10 minutes.
4 Remove from the heat and mash until almost smooth but still with a bit of texture. Season with salt and pepper.
Just because you may have failed in the past, doesn’t mean you will fail again. If you really want to change something in your life, know that if you truly believe it will happen, then you will find a way to make it happen. Belief is the fuel of ambition! In attempting to do anything new or remotely ambitious in your life, check in with your overall belief system to ensure that you are congruent. When you believe you can achieve great things, you will.
Perhaps one of the greatest examples of this was the belief that running a mile under four minutes was humanly impossible, a view reflected by the hundreds who tried and failed. However, Roger Banister decided that this daunting physical barrier could be overcome. After he smashed the record in his exhausting, historic performance, people immediately believed that it was now possible and in the 18 months after his historical achievement the sub 4 min mile was achieved by more than 45 runners.
Research has also shown that many of the people at the top of their professions strongly believe that they are better than they really are. But this belief allows them to BE better than they really are. And the more successful they are the more evidence there appears to be to support their belief in their greatness.
It is also worth pointing out, that one of the functions performed for us by our mind is the validation of our ways of thinking about the world. We will tend to seek confirmation for what we believe, even if those beliefs are harmful to our wellbeing and better good. If you believe that you are capable and confident, you pay attention to those signals from the outside world which reinforces those beliefs. If you believe that you are not as good as others or that you are being judged badly, you seek the confirming evidence just as readily. When this happens, often at the first sign of difficulty in achieving an objective, we are more likely to abandon our plans and shrink back into our comfort zone.
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