Newsletter Summer Solstice 2015

Summer recipe: Hummus

hummus1From time to time, especially in the Summer months, some bright spark will suggest that tubs of ready made hummus be kept in Fareshares fridge, so that they may snack like Potentates, but that is not what how we go. Mistake not Fareshares for a convenience store! We sell chickpeas, both tinned (400g, 80p) and dried in bulk (250g=50p); we sell organic light tahini (280g, £2.80); and sell oil, both good quality olive oil (500ml, £3.68) and organic sunflower oil (500ml, £3). Freshares usually sells garlic & lemons,  too.

Do not, however, use tinned chickpeas to make hummus, if you can avoid it, as they are far too farty. This undesirable fartiness becomes enhanced by the canning process, which traps the potentially flatulent gasses. Although there is no scientific evidence for this, it is non the less true that, for a chickpea pedant, such as Yotam Ottolenghi, the rules are respectfully time-honoured and perfectly clear: ‘The chickpeas must be dried and soaked overnight with some bicarbonate of soda: the texture of hummus should be utterly smooth and soft and this is the way to prepare the peas before they are cooked.’ Yes, Fareshares sells bicarbonate of soda, of the poshest kind: Dove, 200g (200g, £1.40)..

Online, Ottolenghi’s basic hummus recipe gives quantities:- 250g chickpeas; 1 tsp bicarb; 270g light tahini paste; 4 tbsp lemon juice; 4 cloves o’ crushed garlic; 100ml ice cold water; salt – but, for the method, you are directed to Yotam’s offline ‘Jerusalem’ cookbook, which costs £27! Eh? If you can’t imagine what happens next, Julia Moskin spelled it out in the NYT. Pay special attention to the cooking instructions and the roll played by the bicarb in making smooth hummus, if not ameliorating its fartiiness.

BBQ Season: #vegeburger

BBQ season is never an easy time – boozy carnis gnawing charred chunks o’ flesh – but vegeburgers may be the way to go. Myriad permutations are possible and burger recipes are regularly re-posted on Fareshares Food Co-op Facebook page, using the hashtag #vegeburger. Search Facebook & you’ll find our ever-growing portfolio of meat free bun fillings as well as some delightful surprises such as this fellows #vegeburger.

tofuburgerOasis Organic Tofuburgers cost two quid, which is £1 per burger, and offer a swift tasty and portable meal/snack solution when served in a bun stuffed with salad. Keep a supply of these little darlings and you won’t have to go hungry at tedious BBQs this Summer!  Fareshares offers a random-izised and revolving selection of the following organic Tofuburger varieties:

  •     Beetroot & Walnut – commended in the Organic Food Awards
  •     Chick Pea – a little extra ‘crunch’ without the addition of nuts
  •     Chilli – including red kidney beans and ‘hot’ stuff!
  •     Celery – very distinctive fresh celery flavour
  •     Leek – super tasting leeks
  •     Garlic mushroom – if you like them you’ll love these burgers
  •     Apple & Raisin – a little sweetness under your grill
  •     Tomato – yes real tomatoes in this one
  •     Peppers – both the red and green varieties!

Also in the ‘fridge, you will see Oasis Marinated and Deep-Fried Tofu (200g, £2.25) which requires no further cooking to add instant plant protein to salads and sandwiches.

Potluck on Saturday August 15th @ Pullens Cemtre

The reason why Fareshares can afford its low prices is that nobody gets paid. Everyone involved with our project donates their time and expertise for free. Fareshares depends upon its volunteers, who are always needed and welcome. We hold monthly meetings on the 15th and we invite you to join us at the Pullens Centre, 184 Crampton Street, on the 15th of August – Saturday – from 6pm to share some hearty vegan fare and talk about Fareshares!

If you’re thinking you may volunteer with Fareshares, or you used to be involved, this is an opportunity to meet the people behind the scenes, or to catch up with old friends. There’s currently about a score of people associated with our collective – not just those ones you see behind the counter – and new volunteers are always welcome & needed to manage all the various facets of our project. Please let us know in advance if you plan to attend, so we have an idea of numbers. Join the event via Facebook, or e-mail,

After supper, Fareshares’ monthly meeting takes place from 7pm. All prospective and past members of Fareshares are welcome to eat with us, but only present members of the collective may participate in its business meeting.