National charity FoodCycle has linked with a group of celebrated foodies to create a digital recipe book it hopes will help build stronger, healthier communities and tackle food waste.
The charity, whose role is to reduce loneliness, hunger and food waste, collaborated with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Melissa Hemsley, Skye Gyngell and other celebrity chefs and volunteers to launch Recipes for Community this Christmas.
The book features vegetarian recipes that make use of leftover ingredients.
Dishes include roast fennel, new potato & tomato stew; fried eggs, avocado & smoky bean tacos; and slow-cooked chard with chickpeas.
“Over half of those who come to a FoodCycle meal live alone and sadly for some of these guests, it’s their only chance each week to enjoy a meal with another person,” said Mary McGrath, FoodCycle chief executive.
“But we know that eating together is important for reducing loneliness and building communities because 77% of guests tell us they have made friends at a FoodCycle meal and 79% feel more part of their community since joining us.”
Fearnley-Whittingstall said: “Eating is about more than essential nutrition. It is a vital shared experience that bonds us together and helps to build stronger, healthier communities.”
FoodCycle was “a wonderfully simple idea”, using food that would otherwise go to waste to create nutritious community meals for anyone who wished to join.
“Sitting down to share a weekly meal may seem like a small thing to some, but food inspires conversations, encourages connection and gives us a chance to forget the stresses of life for a little while,” he said.
The book can be downloaded from https://foodcycle.org.uk from 3 December for free, but the charity asks for those who can to make a donation of £3.
All proceeds will go to FoodCycle which creates weekly, free community meals for vulnerable people across the country, using food that would otherwise go to waste.