Xmas Opening Hours
During the holidays, Fareshares shall open to supply your festive needs* at the following times:
Weds 23rd: 2pm to 6pm
Thurs 24th: 2pm to 5pm
Weds 30th: 2pm to 4pm
*Festive requisites include:
Infinity Foods organic vegan Christmas puddings (454g, £5.64)
Artisan Grains Nut Roast with Cashew & Cranberry (gluten free) (200g, £2.23)
Old Post Office Bakery Mince Pies (gluten free)
Zaytoun Festive Selection
However Christ-orientated you are, artisanal produce of the original Holy Land makes an appropriate gift at this time of year, especially when its fairly-traded with farmers in Palestine, giving them a lifeline to the wider world and a glimmer of hope that they may one day be left in peace. “If Christmas is about giving and about receiving, then you can give two or three times over by choosing a product from a social enterprise,” said Cathi Pawson of Zaytoun CIC, which on 26 November won the prize for International Impact at the UK Social Enterprise Awards.
We are talking about fairly-traded olive oil (1L/£11.54; 500ml/£7.29; 250ml/£3.94), za’atar (never mind the price as it is sold out, but you can buy it online) and maftoul (250, £1.54). All are supplied by the Palestine Fair Trade Association, based in Jenin, and sold by Fareshares at wholesale prices. As a gesture of solidarity, we do not put a mark-up on Zaytoun products.
The Zaytoun folks recommend this unusual festive stuffing, made with their Palestinian freekeh (250g, £1.69), the ancient grain that is now recognized as a superfood, packing twice the fibre of quinoa! Freekeh is essentially roasted green wheat, but one might think of and cook with it like green rice. Roasted on an open fire before being rubbed to remove its husk and reveal the aromatic grain, its taste has a subtle smokiness to it that’s typically complimented with onion, garlic and herbs. But this recipe incorporates cranberries and apples & is finished with scallions, parsley, and walnuts!
‘OK,’ you say,’ enough already!’ ‘Sympathetic as I am to the plight of the Palestinian farmers, I can’t be sending foodstuffs through the Christmas post.’ Never mind, Zaytoun has a gift solution for you: support an olive tree planting project. £20.88 pays for five, three year old olive tree saplings (25 trees = £100.88). The 88p is the postage cost of the commemorative certificate that they send your loved one.
If we sell out of Zaytoun Palestinian olive oil, or anyway, you might consider the Lesbian Donkey Olive Oil (1L/£8.82) produced by a small family owned business with a social orientation on the largest island of the north-east Aegean, which has been bearing the brunt of the refugee exodus.
If you don’t fancy sponsoring olive tree planting in Palestine, or as well, please consider a seasonal donation to the Refugee Community Kitchen in the Calais Jungle, where they serve hundreds of nutritious meals every day to those who have fled war zones, crossed a continent and have next to nothing left, except their humanity.
The perennial Christmas question generally focuses on the availability and quality of the Brussels sprouts. As it has been unseasonably warm, Autumnal growth has been too vigorous, making large and squashy sprouts that quickly rot. However, our sprouts this Christmas are the smaller, more compact and favoursome Suffolk version from Home Farm, Nacton, on the stalk (try roasting a whole one!)
We shall also have organic parsnips from Lincolnshire; Chinese Clementines and a selection of nuts – chestnuts, walnuts, almonds – in their shells. Fareshares’ veg is always in great demand and likely to be especially popular at Christmas, so do try and visit the shop on Wednesday 23rd if possible, as they are liable to be sold out by Chrsitmas Eve.
In The Fridge: #tempehtempeh & Fridge Cakes
Due to canny wheeling and dealing, prices of some of your favourite items from Fareshares’ magic fridge have plunged, with your favourite Oasis Organic Original tempeh slices, marinated in tamari & ginger and deep fried, so you can eat them from the packet or just reheat, at the new lower price of only £1.75!
We will also have strictly limited supplies of Natural (240g, £1.95) and Oak Smoked Tempeh (200g, £2.20) for those who might like to stuff a Tofucken this Xmas, or experiment with the recipes collected at Fareshares Facebook under the hashtag, #tempehtempeh. Please note that these products are supplied to us frozen, i.e.: they are slowly defrosting in our fridge. Therefore, the six month ‘use by’ date on the packaging is invalidated and the defrosted tempeh should not be refrozen. It will, however, keep in your fridge at home for a week from purchase, although it may start to look a bit sweaty.
We’ve laid in a good supply of Ploughshares Organic Fridge Cakes, which make great stocking stuffers, missus, and we’ve got all seven varieties at the lower price of only 90p each. Not only that, but we are gratified to announce the return of three varieties of gluten-free Organic Raw fruit/nut slices for a mere £1 each. Verily, it must be Christmas!
Fareshares on Facebook
Over at the Fareshares Food Co-op Facebook page, the big question is, will we reach 500 ‘likes’ this year? This time last year, we were celebrating our 400th ‘like’, so it would be gratifying to have gained a hundred new Likers in a calendar year, without resorting to buying ‘likes,’ even though we could reach 220,000 people nearby, starting for only £13.00, if we had the budget and requisite insane mentality. Of course, FS doesn’t care that much about FB, but our page IS curated and a good source of vegan news and recipes. This winter, we’re collecting hearty soup recipes under the hastag, #heartysoup, and the one for Thai Red Lentil & Butternut Squash Soup is possibly the most popular item ever posted on our page!