Posts Tagged ‘food’

What Did Rachel Really Think?

Monday, October 12th, 2009

I really enjoyed taking part in the film – it was very random but good fun. I liked the fact we didn’t know what we’d have to cook with as quite often that’s the case. Often when it’s coming to the end of term you find that you have to just eat what’s in your cupboard, which doesn’t have to mean rubbish meals.

Like we did in the film you just have to be more inventive with your ingredients, such as using mushy peas to make fried rice! Something I’ve found was a great left over meal is during BBQ season. Any left over meat i.e. sausages etc chop them all up and stir-fry them with some green beans, baby sweet corn and carrot (or whatever really!). Then add some sweet chilli or soy sauce and eat it. It’s really nice but you do have to make sure you re-cook the meat properly otherwise I think you could die or something.

Billy the Chef’s Top 3 Stir Fry tips

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

1.  Don’t overload the pan with ingredients.  You’ll need space in the pan to toss everything and let it cook.  Also, lots of small groups of ingredients means more variation and more flavour in your meal.

2.  Slice your meat and vegetables finely so they cook quicker.  The idea of a stir fry is to flash fry the ingredients.  If they take too long to cook, they’ll stew.

3.  Use a flavoured oil if you can, as the flavour will transfer to the ingredients.

OI! TUBBO!!!!…..a phrase you dont want to hear at Uni.

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

Well it’s all getting very exciting at the moment isn’t it?! In a couple of weeks you’re going to flee the nest (unless you’re at a boarding school and fled the nest when you were 8).  You’re probably a bit worried at the moment about courses, accommodation, whether or not you’ll be the floor weirdo who doesn’t make friends…the list is endless.

What you’re probably not worried about is something a lot more terrifying and unseen.  Little did I see the titanic sized iceberg I was heading into (and heading towards becoming) when my parents dropped me off on that sunny September morning in Leeds.

One problem which affects most freshers in their first year of university is piling on the pounds from high calorie foods, eating at irregular hours, gorging on takeaways after a night out and drinking like an Irish landlord on St. Patrick’s night.  Even the strongest willed will fall foul of these gastronomic sirens. I myself went to university a trim 12 stone 8, regularly going to the gym for two to three hours, achieving 40 pull ups and playing football like a younger more attractive Lionel Messi.

However, university food was all to tempting, breakfast was a full English, lunch was enough sandwiches to fill a Darby and Joan social, and dinner was random meat in random sauce with chips, chips and chips.  This would be followed by a couple of leftover sandwiches later in the evening and if my equally greedy roommate could tempt me, a dirty great pizza and 4 cans of cider.

Even if you’re not subject to hall food, the temptations of the tummy are still great.  I knew many people in self-catering who, rather than knocking themselves up a nifty little salad or bowl of pasta, would regularly frequent the local take-away and conjure up such disgusting foods such as Pot Noodle on toast. It’s also pretty probable that you’re not going to do that much exercise as the bus is much easier and you’re going to be knocking booze back at most social occasions.

Okay so here’s the deal, nearly everyone I knew must have piled on between 6 pounds to a stone, if not more. However, there is a solution! There is salvation! It took a doctor to diagnose me as ‘clinically obese’ for me to turn my life around. I walked out the surgery determined to shed my 16 stone of flab and return to the demi-god body I had before. I walked straight into a Subway and ordered a 12 inch TUNA mayo sub with low fat mayo….IT HAD BEGUN!

I’m now back to (after 2 years) a lean 12 and a half stone, I play football, the crippling pain in my left arm and taste of copper in my mouth has gone! Girls don’t throw up because I’m fat when I talk to them, they throw up for other reasons. There are ways to beat the bulge and I will share it with you ‘cos I am nice.

1. Just say no! When your mates want the second or third takeaway of the week you really have to show will power.  The average takeaway pizza has double your recommended calorie intake for the day, and such an overload will pile on the pounds in weeks.

2.Snack on healthy stuff – not just crisps, chocolate or my favorite, Pepperoni. Dried fruits such as prunes, apricots and goji berries are perfect, also rice cakes are getting tastier…  I used to (and still do) snack on gherkins.  Don’t be daft and deny yourself everything, you can still eat your faves, just not in excess.  Chili is good, ask for extra chili on your kebab, it will speed up your metabolism.

3. Watch the alcohol. Aside from killing brain cells (which you’ll need in second year) you will put on a ton of weight.  Beer, whine and alcopops are the worst, go for diet coke and vodka.

4. Soft drinks. It’s very easy to think you need energy drinks to get you through the day…you don’t…all they do is pile on the pounds and give you an artificial high.  Drink lots of water, it keeps you awake, it’s free, activates your brain and helps your metabolism….possibly.

5.EXERCISE…half an hour of walking a day is really good for you, it’s probably the least you should be doing a day and isn’t back-breaking.  I try and walk everywhere now, it saves money and helps shed the man boobs.  Another great way is to join a sports society.

6.Eat loads of fruit and veg. Snack on fruit – very tasty, cheap and low fat.  Instead of buying a sandwich at the union or the twelfth pack of Macoys that day, take a bit of fruit, saves pounds!

7. Have a balanced diet. Have a good breakfast which will keep you going through the day,have your main meal at lunch and try a lighter evening meal.

8. Don’t eat late at night – it’s harder to digest and your body wont burn it off.

9.Don’t give up! If you have a bad day, i.e you eat a ton of crab quiche….balance it with a good day, filled with lovely exercise! Vegetables! Ryvita! Water!

10.REMEMBER…your mate who lives next door who is toned and a good weight might have a higher metabolic rate than you, so don’t be sucked in to his debauched, over eating world…that’s what happened to me.

A Guide to Your Fridge

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

When you’re an all round athlete, training for the London Marathon, you need to be at the peak of your health.  You need a dedicated mindset, training every day and taking care of your diet, repeating the wise words of Gillian McKeith-’you are what you eat.’  Or take skier Joe Munroe’s more relaxed approach.  When your fridge contains nothing more than toothpaste, a loaf of mouldy bread and a skidmark, we think Joe’s taking the piste.

With the marathon approaching faster than a visit from Loughborough council’s health and hygiene department, stepped in and did the only thing best for Joe’s fridge.  Pimped it out.

So here’s our guide as to what Debbie put in there and why.

Full of protein and so easy to cook.  Just whack it in the oven at 200°C for about an hour and half.  No other preparation needed (other than removing the packaging…)  To check if it’s cooked, push your knife into the thickest part of the chicken.  If the juices run clear, it’s cooked.  If not, keep it in for another 15 minutes.  We got our chicken from Loughborough Market.  The butcher there will know exactly where the chicken’s come from, the farmer who reared them and the conditions in which they were reared.  If you’re concerned about battery farmed chickens or eggs, go to your local butcher.

One of the healthiest foods you can eat,  fish is amazing for you.  Most people don’t buy fish because they don’t know how to cook it though.  An easy way is to squeeze some lemon juice, salt and pepper over it then grill it.  If you want to know more, go to your local fishmonger, they’re the experts and they’re dead friendly.  They’ll be able to tell you the best way on how to cook any type of fish and if you ask nicely, will probably give you a student discount.

Fresh vegetables
Again, all from the local market.  We went there at the end of the day and got some real bargains.  The last thing traders want to do is take loads of produce back home with them, so they’ll sell it at a really low price, just to get rid of it.  You can use vegetables in loads of dishes, but possibly the easiest is a stir fry.  Simply chop everything up, a drop of oil in the pan, get the pan hot and then just stir and fry.  Serve with rice or noodles, it’ll taste great.

Have you got a fridge that’s in need of a pimpin?  Then let us know, get in touch by hitting the Feedback button on the Contact Us page.

International Cook-Off. The Judges View…

Thursday, May 7th, 2009

We first started planning International Cooking Competition as we thought it would be very facinating to find out how people in other countries cook and present their dishes. I told myself “It would definitely be very exciting and taste-rewarding”. And indeed, we had a very positive response from Loughborough’s International Students with lots of them eager to show off the best cuisine their country has to offer. We quickly got the teams signed up and the day of the competition was soon upon us!

On the day, the atmosphere in the kitchen was nervous, hyperactive and friendly. Contestants had to multitask, watching over their pans and pots as well as peeking what other countries were doing. Of course the best and at the same time the hardest part of the competition was the tasting and judging. It was evident that everyone and poured their patriotism into their work and done their best countires culinary pride, and every single meal was in its own way delightful and exotic. The true International Spirit or you may say flavour, could be felt in every meal and each one presented us we a new flavour we’d never tasted before.. Even though it was hard, we picked a winner and thankfully none of the contestants felt bad or upset!

Overall I think that during these two hectic hours, whilst running around the kitchen and asking fellow contestants for a spare egg or some cooking oil, people became good friends. The event was a great success and opened up a lot of peoples eyes to the huge exotic and exciting variety of food they’re able to cook.

Student Cooking.Tv’s International Food Cook-Off: The View from the Podium

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

Sara: Participating in the ISA cooking competition was one of my best experiences at Loughborough University. I was very excited when I found out that I was to be one of the competitors, but then I was told that we will have only 45 minutes to cook and it seemed impossible! However with the help of my housemate Annelore I planned to make carrot sauté (Fried grated carrots served with yogurt and garlic mixture) and spinach sauté (Steamed spinach with fried egg served with yogurt and garlic mixture) as a starter and, Tah-chin (Rice stuffed with chicken and lots of saffron with a special yogurt sauce) as the main dish. For dessert I thought a Shiraz salad which is a mixture of tomato, cucumber and onion with lemon juice and olive oil would catch someone’s attention. In truth is was too much for 45 minutes and I wasn’t sure that we could make it, but we planned for every 5 minutes and crossed our fingers!

I didn’t know until the day that the studentcooking team were coming along to film making it much more stressful (and more fun too!!). It was my first time cooking in such a big kitchen despite it being something I’d always wanted to do.

Soon the time to worry was over and the time started and we got cooking! My main memory was how incredibly hot it was in the kitchen, but who cared! It was the competition and we were too busy to complain about it! And just as quickly as it began -  “3, 2, 1! Time is over!” and we downed tools. We were right on time, and to my surprise had managed to cook all the food we planned.

The hardest part however was yet to come…take the food to the judges! I was pleased with the food but that did nothing to calm my nerves. Shortly after this my hard worked had proved worthwhile when I heard Iranian cuisine was the winner!
As if the pride of being the winner wasn’t enough we also got chocolate, champagne and some Diners+ cards (all of which we suitably enjoyed!!!).

And to the Victor….Warm Beer!: Halls Cook Off, Liverpool

Sunday, April 26th, 2009

Christian: Let me first begin by saying thank you to for the lovely crate of warm beer. It was a prize that was very short lived thanks to my friends who wanted to ‘celebrate’ with me.

I had a lot of fun doing the halls cook-off and was pleased that I was representing for Lady Mountford! I was pretty nervous before hand because my team-mate pulled out leaving me on my own when every other team was in two’s. I worried that they’d be able to work quicker and bring along more support but it was okay in the end.

The challenge was a weird one! My sandwich was going so well until the jelly – I know like in some places they eat jelly sandwiches but it wasn’t something I wanted to try or make either! Overall though it was just a lot of fun, we got to meet some great people and it created a genuine buzz and that was fantastic.

The Winner Takes it All…In The World of Busking

Thursday, April 9th, 2009


I wasn’t really surprised that Simon and myself won to be honest. I don’t mean that in an arrogant way it’s just that Callum and Scott’s act was rubbish.

On a serious note though doing the film was a lot of fun. It actually wasn’t the first time I’d been busking although it was the first (and last) time I’d done the name your favourite food and we’ll sing about it act. Busking can be a really good way of earning some extra money when you’re at uni especially around the Christmas period.

The best thing about it is that it is good fun as well not like a job or anything but you can earn a bit of money to put towards your food bill meaning a few nights a week you could treat yourself to something special for sitting and playing guitar!

How to NOT get booed.

Sunday, March 8th, 2009

Doing a bit of busking (or ‘street art’ if you’re feeling pretentious) can be a good way of earning a few pennies while at uni. If you’re looking to get some extra spends for more luxury food and are considering busking here are a few tips:

  1. Have a talent: everyone hates a rubbish street performer. Before you go out decide what your act is and practise it. If you’re going to play guitar and sing make sure you learn a few songs so you don’t have to keep repeating the same one!
  2. Research the area: you really need to know a thing or two about the area you intend to occupy with your busking. For one thing you want to make sure it’s safe as I’m sure you don’t want to be attacked or have your earnings nicked! Something else you need to consider is that a lot of councils require you to have a busking license that you have to apply for. No license no busking!
  3. Don’t beg: believe it or not there are some rules to busking, which exist to separate it from begging. Namely you’re not permitted to ASK for money as this is soliciting for cash/begging. As a busker you simply have to rely on your raw talent and peoples good will.
  4. Pick your time: rainy or cold winter days do not do much for the public’s mood or generosity. There are generally less people about and you will probably find you earn less in these situations. The exception to this being the Christmas period when you can cash in on the busy shopping streets!
  5. Mix it up: People will only throw you cash every once in a while and if they gave you some last week, you may not get any this week. As people are creatures of habit, you will often see the same locals in town each time you busk, which can be beneficial as they get to know you, but you may find that after a while your earnings dwindle in one place and you’ll need to go somewhere else to get a fresh audience. When thinking of where to go remember: Tourism is a buskers best friend!

Fairtrade Vs Normal…PRICE WAR!!

Thursday, February 19th, 2009

Beer 500ml


Biscuits 125g

FAIRTRADE £1.23   NORMAL £1.15

Tea Bags (80bags)

FAIRTRADE £2.62    NORMAL £2.05

Instant coffee 100g

FAIRTRADE £1.79    NORMAL £2.98

Sugar Granulated Sugar 1kg


Honey 340g



FAIRTRADE £1.25 per kg   NORMAL £1.09 per kg


Fairtrade £12.10

Normal £12.66

*only non Fairtrade alternative

**based on buying 1 kg of bananas