The Organic. Naturally Different campaign, aims to help people understand what organic means and make conscious decisions when they go food shopping by showing how eating organic can be part of a budget-conscious lifestyle if you shop, cook and plan wisely.
September is designated Organic month, and The Campaign for Organic challenged a number of Foodies 100 bloggers to cook and use organic products with their families and to see, with careful planning, how far the products would go, and to see if their perceptions about organic food would change during the challenge.
At the start of the challenge Pippa from a Mother’s Ramblings confessed that she did not buy organic as she thought that she could not afford it, but then her first shop arrived and she realised that it really would go a very long way, far further than her original perception had led her to believe, and that she could also cater for her gluten and egg free husband. Her meal plans are here and here.
Kavey wrote that there was so much more to the issue than just the cost of organic food, and has written a very insightful, analytical and thought provoking piece covering the main arguments for and against organic, together with lots of tips and links to make your organic products go further. I especially like the idea of saving the fat from your roast chicken for your next roast, which is something that I’ll be doing.
Utterly Scrummy Michelle writes legendary meal plans and, with a few additions and her own home grown organic produce from her allotment, used every single item up from both shops to feed her, her husband and her 3 daughters. Overall she feels that if you can afford the price differential of organic food then certainly you should buy it, and to keep an eye out for items on BOGOF or reduced and to grow your own as much as possible – and to exchange your produce with neighbours for other items you need.
Like Michelle, Katie drew up a careful meal plan, and was most impressed with the taste and quality of the fresh produce. She feels that opting for organic meat and dairy gives you peace of mind on animal welfare and reaps rewards in terms of the ingredients.
Alida who blogs at My Little Italian Kitchen was already a keen supporter of organics, and is positively evangelical about the better taste and quality of organic products. She writes that Italians are a food obsessed nation and that as you are what you eat, you should eat the best you can afford. Her meal plan contains a number of delicious looking recipes, all with an Italian influence.
Danny, the Food Urchin has conflicting feelings, but generally is leaning towards making some wholesale changes to how he shops and eats. He also shares a thrifty recipe for a Panade of slow-cooked onions with organic cheddar.
The bloggers came up with some amazing recipes using organic produce, I especially like the sound of Dom, from Belleau Kitchen’s baked plum & Pimm’s jam which he made into a granola topped crumble, his thoughts on organic are “…like anything in life you should chose the best that you can afford… it will clearly be better for your body as well as the planet…”
Further organic recipes from Dom were a Moroccan stew, courgette & apple cake, cous cous salad, a knobbly apple and cider washed goat’s cheese traybake, and a simple tomato sauce with 3 ways to use it.
Alida shared a further five organic recipes including a chilli con carne made with lamb, brown pasta with courgettes and a mouth watering chocolate & ricotta tart.
Katie made quick roasted potatoes for her boys, as quick, and far cheaper than reaching for the oven chips in the freezer and Pippa shared a recipe for a very tasty organic beef casserole, which she says is the best casserole she has ever made!
Do you buy organic or have any tips to share to make organic foods go further?
Many thanks to the bloggers who took part in the challenge.