PREPARING TO PROTECT MY SEEDLINGS
We need resilience to cope with the impacts of climate change, and we need the courage, skills and tools to help us keep going as we work to restore planetary health. Today I finished off a bottle of New Zealand Vodka and, with my new glass-cutting tool, and helpful husband, began creating cloches to protect our delicate seedlings from severe weather … rain, wind, and early frost or snow. It will take quite a few bottles of vodka to have enough for the garden but we’re on the lookout to recycle any other glass or plastic bottles we can find to do the job.
It helps knowing we’re all in this together and it would be great if everyone could take and share a new action on World Health Day, 7 April, so we can reach our target of 365 actions in a day – the actions of a whole year in one day. There has never been more urgency to act and to work together to transform our culture to one focused on restoring planetary health. Find out more and share your actions here: www.ayearinaday.org
PS. I use the vodka for cooking (:
PLANT-BASED EATING: Tofu Meatball Korma
Growing up a carnivore teaches you one set of cooking skills. To create a truly inspiring plant-based diet requires a totally different set … which is why so many restaurants are usually inadequate at providing alternatives.
I’ve been using Katoomba author, Teya Brooks Pribac’s new book ‘Not Just Another Vegan Cookbook’ and Ottolenghi’s ‘Flavour’, as my own personal masterclass in learning these skills.
Tonight’s meal, Tofu Meatball Korma, from ‘Flavour’, was incredibly delicious … it was meant to serve 4, but what can I say. There are no leftovers!!!!!!
Even though it was time-consuming, it’s taught me the basic skills I can use to create meals without a recipe down the track. It was most definitely a meal you’d be proud to share at a dinner party, and it’s now entered my list of absolute favourite recipes.
Tofu Meatball Korma
- ½ red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 40 gm cashews
- 20 gm blanched almonds
- 6 cardamom pods, shells discarded and seeds removed
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 tsp coriander seeds
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 4 garlic cloves
- 15 gm fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 1 green chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3/4 tsp ground turmeric
- 2 Roma tomatoes, grated and skin discarded
- 2 tbsp coriander leaves, finely sliced to serve
- salt and black pepper
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 250 gm shitake button mushrooms, sliced ½ cm thick
- 200 gm extra firm tofu, patted dry and then roughly crumbled into chunks
- 3 garlic cloves
- 150 gm silken tofu
- 2 tbsp tahini
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 30 gm panko breadcrumbs (fresh breadcrumbs toasted in oven)
- ½ tbsp cornflour
- 5 spring onions, thinly sliced
- 10 gm coriander, finely chopped
- Preheat the oven to 200C fan. Combine the red onion, lemon juice and 1/8 tsp salt in a small bowl and set aside while you make the 'meatballs' and sauce, or leave overnight.
- Put the cashews and almonds into a small saucepan on a medium-high heat. Cover with water, bring to the boil, then lower the heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- For the 'meatballs', heat the oil in a large saute pan on a high heat, then add the mushrooms and the firm tofu and cook until lightly golden, about 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic for 30 seconds, then remove from the heat. Place in a food processor and pulse until roughly chopped. Transfer to a large mixing bowl with all the remaining ingredients for the meatballs, ½ tsp salt and a good grind of black pepper. Mix very well to combine. With oiled hands, form into 16 ping-pong-sized balls, about 40 gm each, compressing them as you go so they hold together. Place them on a paper-lined baking tray, spaced apart, and bake for 25 minutes until lightly golden. Set aside.
- While the meatballs are in the oven, make the sauce. Finely crush the cardamom, cumin and coriander seeds in a pestle and mortar and set aside. Put 1 ½ tbsps oil into a large saute pan, for which you have a lid, on a medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook for 10 minutes, or until softened and deeply browned. Transfer to a blender along with the nuts and 200ml of water, and blend until completely smooth, about 2 minutes.
- Put the remaining 1 ½ tbsps of oil into the same pan on a medium-high heat. Add the garlic, ginger and green chilli and cook for 1 minute, then add the spices and cook for 1 minute more. Add the tomatoes and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally until thickened. Add the pureed onion and nut mixture, another 500 ml water, ½ tsp salt and a good grind of black pepper. Bring to a simmer, then lower the heat to medium and cook for 25 minutes, until reduced by a third. Add the meatballs to the pan of sauce, then cover with the lid and heat for 5 minutes, until the meatballs are warmed through. Sprinkle over the coriander and sliced red onion.
PRODUCE > CONSUME
Today I also planted Cos Verdi Lettuce seeds (Green Cos!). Again, past their use by date, but I put more seeds in the punnets than I normally would and hopefully enough will germinate. These are a great winter lettuce and the one you use to make Caesar Salad.
WHAT ACTIONS ARE OTHER PEOPLE TAKING?
Yesterday Kieran spent the afternoon at Blackheath Community Farm filling a water diversion trench he’d dug with gravel to protect the Farm from future flooding.
Yesterday Ian put a Climate Action Now sticker from the Macquarie Alliance for Climate onto his car and then posted his action for World Health Day onto Council’s website – he’ll be signing their Open Letter calling for urgent, meaningful action on climate change. You can get a yard sign or sticker and sign the letter here: https://www.macquariealliance.org/
OUR HAVE YOUR SAY PAGE IS UP FOR WORLD HEALTH DAY IF YOU’D LIKE TO POST THE ACTION OR ACTIONS YOU’LL BE DOING ON 7 APRIL … you can post a photo too!
Share your action here: https://yoursay.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/world-health-day
The theme for World Health Day this year is Our Planet, Our Health – recognising that our health is totally dependent on the health of the earth’s natural systems.
We’re trying to reach 365 actions in one day, the action of a whole year in a day, but we really really need your help. Would you consider doing and sharing one or more actions, and inviting everyone you know to join you, so that we can really show how serious we are about turning things around to create a healthier world.
Research by academics at Leeds University, engineering firm Arup and the C40 Cities climate group has identified that 73 per cent of all changes needed by 2030 to keep the world on course to meet the Paris agreement targets need to be made by governments and industry. But private citizens have considerable influence over the remaining 27 per cent. So let’s get cracking!