Not just vegan food - M&S vegan food!
At the beginning of the year M&S pushed the boundaries of plant-based eating with their Plant Kitchen range which features over 60 expertly created vegan products including mouthwatering meals, sumptuous snacks and incredible ingredients - alongside some delicious dishes for plant-based picnics. M&S were the first high-street retailer to develop a vegan potato salad and vegan coleslaw whilst their on-the-go products are ideal fuss-free options. I loved the smoky chipotle flavour and zesty lime in the Mexican Supergrain Salad - the hummus-like dip is incredibly moorish! The Roast Aubergine with Herby Grains has a fiery harissa sauce for those who like a chilli kick (the cooling cashew and cannellini bean dressing is inspired!). I also loved the kachumber salad and mango chutney combined with the sweet potato in the Sweet Potato Biryani Wrap - or for fans of Mediterranean veg there is a Roasted Veg and Avocado Sandwich. If you are after a picnic classic then don’t miss their seasoned soy mince Sausage Roll. The continuously expanding range recently launched a Hoisin No Duck Wrap - I felt like I was partaking in a Heston Blumenthal experiment as the food tastes like ‘duck’ but is actually roasted soya protein! Complete your picnic with one of their new puds; the refreshing Mango, Passionfruit & Coconut Pot offers a taste of the tropics with a deliciously smooth panna cotta-style base and fruity compote (perfect topped with a chunk of Original Goupie) - or enjoy the indulgent Belgian Chocolate Mousse with rich chocolate sauce and crunchy cocoa nib topping (add a chunk of Cherry and Almond Goupiefor a complete treat).
No picnic is complete without a packet of something crisp and crunchy - don’t worry we have also found totally delicious - and sustainable - dips to complete your snacking experience! - but so many brands are full of added ‘nasties’. Say hello to the sensational snacks from Well&Truly… a gluten-free ‘unjunked’ crisp made with all natural ingredients and baked in small batches. The company was set up my two Mums determined to offer moorish munchies without artificial preservatives - proving that healthier alternatives don’t have to be bland and boring. Two of the four flavours (more are on the way) are vegan-friendly and just the thing to pack in your picnic hamper. The smokey paprika corn chips and sea salt & cider vinegar tortilla crisps are great on their own or with hummus or guacamole and are available in 30g packets or 100g bags if you can bear to share…
Available on Ocado, Tesco, Sainsburys, Farmdrop, Booths, Whole Foods and independants across the country.
Less Waste - More Taste!
Hannah McCollum founded ChicPby combining her passion for the environment and her love of creative cookery. Motivated to highlight the blight of food waste in the food industry - over forty per cent of British crops are rejected because of their shape or size - and tired of ready-made, bland and unhealthy hummus options, Hannah set about developing her own solution that would revolutionise our approach to cooking and food waste. ChicP takes unwanted, imperfect raw vegetables, that would otherwise be wasted, and transforms them into a range of scrumptious and sustainable dips. The vibrant and fresh Raw beetroot, horseradish & sage has a fiery horseradish kick - I loved it with cucumber crudites, whilst the Herby parsley infused hummus is delicious stirred through a pasta salad (BOSH have a brilliant vegan recipe). The Carrot, ginger & turmeric is utterly scrummy in tortilla wraps or, like the Chilli Pumpkin, with tortilla, corn or pop crisps. Don’t overlook the Banana & Chocolate which is great for dipping slices of fruit or as a healthy chocolate spread!
Available on Ocado and in independent shops across the country.
The piece was created by Sophie Richmond on behalf of Goupie.