A taste of the final for Jas Smith in The School Chef of the Year

Our very own MetMUncher, Jas Smith, is currently on a working placement with Manchester Fayre, Manchester City Council’s catering service, which supplies over 27,500 great value, nutritious meals in nursery, primary and secondary schools and social care facilities across Manchester each day.

Jas has been working alongside Cheryl Allen, one of Manchester Fayres Unit Managers based at St. Mary’s C of E Primary, Moston. Together they worked on an entry for The School Chef of the Year 2019. This is a national competition designed to show off school catering and the skill of our school chefs. Entry included designing, preparing and cooking an imaginative, two-course menu suitable for school children, compliant with the School Food Standards, costings, and other competition rules.

Their main course is a Beef Scone Whirl with vegetable accompaniments and meaty gravy.

The second course is a Peach Custard Tart, with a Fruity Salsa and Edible Flower Decoration.


Dishes were based around providing a rainbow of fruits and vegetables, and to ensure even the fussiest of eaters don’t miss out on health protecting nutrients, locally sourced fruits, and vegetables were finely chopped to disguise them in the Whirl to help ensure all children achieve a nutrient inclusive diet.

Jas and Cheryl made it through to the National Final but unfortunately they just missed out on top spot. A huge congratulations goes out to the creative pair as this is a great achievement and one they should be very proud of!

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MetMUnch brought their Soup-erheroes and Meat Free campaigns to Man Met Uni!

MetMUnch have been on a mission to showcase sustainable, meat free food that is both delicious and nutrient dense. From the start of January, MetMUnch joined forces with the University’s catering team to bring its ‘Soup-erheroes’ and Meat Free Monday campaigns to the Business School.

Soup-erheroes launched on Wednesday 16th January before returning a fortnight later, bringing superhero vegetables and their nutritional powers to the University. Soup is an amazing way to get all kinds of vitamins and minerals into your diet; they can keep you warm in the winter months and help lower food waste, as veg at the back of your fridge can be transformed into super-soups.

MetMUnch have also been making healthy meat free vegan food more accessible on campus. On Monday 21 January, they collaborated with the University catering team to hold a ‘meat free Monday’, and had all kinds of delicious food on offer including vegan chickpea, broccoli and spinach curry, chilli falafel burgers with salad and vegetable and lentil lasagne.

As the UK’s greenest university with top marks in the People & Planet award for environmental sustainability, the University has an important role to play in raising awareness of healthier eating, meat free meals and low carbon food production.

Our global population recently hit 7 billion and we’re on course for 10 billion mouths to feed in 2050. The world urgently needs to find a way of producing enough food for all these people and reducing our dependency on meat will play a major role.

The campaign got the backing of the official MeatFreeMonday campaign, started by Sir Paul McCartney, and has had some sensational feedback on social media. Here are some of the tweets:

This was the first trial of its kind at the University and was a huge success. Both staff and students are now waiting to see what delicious, healthy and imaginative food will come next.

For more information, follow MetMUnch on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram

#Souperheroes #MetMUnchMeatFree #WeDontDoOrdinary

MetMUnch are buzzing about their new bee collaboration!

MetMUnch has teamed up with a sci-artist to develop some bee-utiful materials for their exciting To Bee or Not To Bee event at the Museum of Science and Industry.

Kelly Stanford creates art themed around scientific concepts, and uses it for science communication purposes. Kelly is currently involved in is the STEM Bee sculpture, which will be located at Manchester Oxford Road station from July 23rd to September 23rd. The bee sculpture is embellished with science facts, imagery from research publications, poetry and portraits of famous local scientists.STEM BeeKelly also started the John Dalton Garden Project after noticing how much diversity in plant and insect species there was in such a small-enclosed urban space.

She said: “Having started the John Dalton Garden Project I was surprised to spot Ashy Mining Bees burrowing in the wooden planters – a species which isn’t recorded as being present here on the NBN Atlas. This inspired me to go ahead documenting and illustrating what I saw. I’m hoping to build a visual guide of all plant and insect species in the garden to raise awareness of what can potentially be found in an urban environment such as university campuses.

Screen Shot 2018-07-04 at 16.25.03 “I feel that small-scale studies such as these are really important in highlighting the fact that species that were once pushed out by urban development can now be successfully
reintroduced, even with minimal space and resources.”

Continuing with the bee theme, Kelly has now teamed up with MetMUnch to create bee-utiful materials that highlight the diversity of food that bees help to produce, and dangers they face as numbers continue to drop. MetMUnch will be at the Bee: Late event at the Museum of Science and Industry is being held on Wednesday 25th July, which will have lots of fun and interactive bee-themed activities. Visitors will be able to see first-hand what the collaboration has developed in what promises to be a great evening.

Bees

For more information go to – https://www.msimanchester.org.uk/whats-on/bee-late

Or get in touch with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram!

Gastronauts at the Museum of Science and Industry

 Gastronauts 2For one night only, MetMUnch’s nutrition team of ‘gastronauts’ highlighted the wonders of eating bone friendly, calcium rich food, to over 700 people, space style.

Having been invited by the Museum of Science and Industry (MSI) to be involved in its Space: Late event, which also showcased Tim Peake’s Soyuz spacecraft, MetMUnch sent people on a food journey that took them beyond the stratosphere and into the nutritional stars.

Soyuz

Like on Earth, astronauts eat three meals a day, with nutritionists ensuring the food they eat provides them with a balanced supply of vitamins and minerals. However, calorie requirements are much higher for astronauts. Depending on the person’s gender and body mass, they could require between 2000 and 3200 calories. This is believed to be because the body is never truly at rest while in space and so requires more fuel to keep going.

Being in the space environment is also known to induce bone loss and, subsequently, calcium loss. According to NASA, astronauts that spend an extended period in space can lose on average one to two percent of bone mass each month.

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However, calcium deficiencies and bone loss aren’t just an issue in outer space, with osteoporosis now affecting over three million people in the UK according to the International Osteoporosis Foundation.

With this in mind, MetMUnch set its nutritional scientists a mission to reveal how astronauts, and people back on Earth, can receive their calcium in a fun, sustainable, and easy to digest fashion, in a space-age way only MetMUnch can.

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Having received official ‘space food’ direct from NASA, the MetMUnch team set about recreating it in Manchester Metropolitan University’s labs. This meant choosing calcium rich foods to be vacuum-packed. A selection of broccoli, beetroot, strawberries, blackberries and raspberries were freeze-dried into powder and sealed. These were accompanied by dried apricots, prunes and dates be given to the public.

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The evening was a resounding success for all concerned, and guests left with space food and new information to savour. MSI’s Contemporary Science Programme Producer, Gina Cooke, said: “We always look forward to working with MetMUnch as they repeatedly generate exciting ideas for public engagement, which ultimately inspires our audience. Gastronauts is the perfect example of this. It was part of our popular Space:Late, which over 700 visitors attended.

“MetMUnch brought a huge team of passionate MetMUnchers who opened up conversations about the importance of calcium. They even gave visitors vacuum-packed food samples to take home. It complimented our programme and provided a new spin on the theme. They were one of the most popular activities on the night and we can see why!”

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With companies looking to go on missions to Mars, space food will need to be lightweight and nutrition dense to save on weight, but also flavoursome and creative to avoid ‘menu fatigue’ in space. This means nutritionists will have to come up with something dynamic, but also sustainable due to restrictions in space. The event seems to have left some students inspired to the step up to the challenge.

Faizan Khokhar, a Level 4 Nutritional Sciences student, said: “Working within the MetMunch team allows you to broaden your knowledge on a variety of subjects, and gives you the opportunity to inform and educate others, through events such as the Space: Late evening held at MSI, which was a successful collaboration.

“When you seriously start to contemplate about working as a nutritionist for NASA in the future, you know how much you enjoyed the event.”

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Check out our hashtag, #Gastronauts on social media to see how the night unfolded or visit our Flickr for more photos.

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram! 🙂

The MetMUnch Vegan Foodie 2 by Nikita Star

Festivals & Fairs!

Before I begin introducing Manchester restaurants, let me start with a quick intro to vegan foodie festivals and fairs! These are happening more and more regularly within the Manchester food scene. Search for them on social media to keep up to date and make sure to go hungry and prepare to be stuffed with a range of taste-tastic creations. Vegan or carnivore, you will not be disappointed.

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VON (Vegan Organic Network) Festivals and Fairs

http://veganorganic.net

Von is a UK registered charity aiming to promote and support organic vegan agriculture.

These snaps were taken from their event in November 2017. VON is great for vegan feasting and hold multiple events throughout the year. Look forward to free mini samples on offer and sometimes a goodie bag on entry.

As well as incredible food, there are clothing and beauty stalls, live music, and various talks and workshops. For future events, check out their Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/pg/VeganOrganicNetwork/events/

Honestly, you would never believe the cakes below were vegan.

Nikita Cakes

 

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GRUB – Plant Powered Sundays http://www.grubmcr.com/

Fairfield Social Club, Archway 6, Temperance Street,  M12 6HR

Ok, so this becoming so popular and I can’t wait to go back. I can see this place being my new favourite spot for vegan grub. GRUB is a street food events company and holds events every weekend, but Sundays are dedicated to the plant eaters. They have 4 or 5 street food stalls, and they are exceptional and change weekly.

The setting has a hipster vibe full of soul, fairy lights and music. There’s a bar serving vegan alcohol and it’s the place to be on a Sunday. Follow them on twitter as they’re always doing competitions for free food and drinks at their events. Though they’re open all day and try to stack enough grub, get there early, you don’t want to risk missing out.

Nikita Chippy

I was lucky enough to attend when “The Hip Hop Chip Shop” were there (see above). Oh my, a vegan chippy. It was FAB. Very impressed with their battered soy shrimp and the chunky chips were the best chippy chips I’ve ever had, for real.

I had treats from ChouChoux, and Bake-O-Rama’s cupcakes were superb. All washed down with a refreshing pint of vegan cider.

Let’s face it, Sundays are a day of rest, so rather than cook yourself, go and enjoy the best vegan street grub Manchester has to offer.

Nikita Cakes 2

 

COMING UP:

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Northern Vegan Festival. https://www.northernveganfestival.com/
When: Saturday 7th April, 10:30am – 5pm

Where: Manchester central, Windmill Street, M2 3GX

I love this one. I missed last year but I did go the previous year. I find it similar to the VON festival. Its big and rammed with food, beauty and clothes stalls. There’s workshops, demos, talks, live music and sometimes speed dating! At the end of the day it spills over to a night of socialising at The Thirsty Scholar- a lively pub down the road from Man Met Uni, serving vegan alcohol. The event is volunteer run and all ticket money goes to animal welfare charities.
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Vegan Life Live http://www.veggies.org.uk/event/vegan-life-live-manchester/

When: Friday 20th April – Sunday 22nd April
Where: Event City, M14 7TB

This is a new 3-day event brought to us by Vegan Life Magazine. A bus ride away for us Manchester students, its located in Trafford. It sounds as though it will be worth the journey, promising delicious food and drink, clothing, cosmetics and education.

Get in touch with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram and let us know what you think! 

 

MetMUnch’s Big Week of Staff & Student Impact

THE LAST week of October was an intense one for MetMUnch, with six events held in six science-packed days.

SciBarThe week began on Monday with a talk at the Department of Science and Engineering’s SciBar, held at The Lass O’Gowrie pub. MetMUnch founder Haleh Moravej delivered an exciting and interactive session, Fat Is Not The Enemy, about good fats versus bad fats, with props including five pounds of fat wowing 60 staff and students from across the University.

On Tuesday, MetMUnch and MMU Sport continued their collaboration in the second HealthyU nutrition class. HealthyU is an eight-week nutrition and fitness programme launched in October. Currently in its pilot stage, the aim is for staff and student participants to enhance their knowledge and understanding of nutrition and fitness, with twice weekly workouts complimented by nutrition classes.

MetMUnch is planning on designing and delivering more creative, bespoke nutrition, health and wellness sessions for teams and departments across Manchester Met, as well as working
on a bigger and better HealthyU programme with MMU Sport for 2016.

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Kimchi cravings

Wednesday saw the Cravings: Late event at the Museum of Science and Industry. Staff and students worked from 7pm to 11pm, educating over 900 members of the public in how to create kimchi, a popular fermented Korean condiment. In the first half hour alone, MetMUnchers demonstrated, created and gave away 250 jars to the eager public, all while explaining the health benefits of and microbiology behind fermented foods.
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MoSI Creative Director Carol Keating said: “I wanted to thank you for all your help making Cravings: Late such a success! We had a record-breaking 909 visitors in the end – double the number we usually see for late events – and we’ve had some great feedback from guests on what a fantastic night it was.” The event showed the level of creativity, fun and excitement that is only possible when students are truly engaged, empowered and learning while doing.

microbesOn Thursday, MetMUnch took part in A Menu Made by Microbes, in collaboration with Professor Jo Verran and celebrity chef Richard Fox. Haleh Moravej hosted a table at Harvey Nichols, where she shared her knowledge of fermentation and nutritional science with diners at the event. MetMUnch will be collaborating on all future Menu Made by Microbes events, increasing cross-departmental engagement for staff and students and continuing to deliver groundbreaking public events on behalf of Manchester Met.
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Friday saw the team work with MMU Futures, MMU Environment, MMU Sport and Residential Life at the MMU Futures Halloween Social. MetMUnchers advised their fellow students on how to use winter vegetables, gave away free pumpkin recipes, and used the hashtag #KitchenHorrorStories to capture video interviews with students on the barriers to fresh cooking and healthy eating as a student.

 

Halloween extravaganza

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MetMUnch’s big week concluded on Halloween, as the team joined staff and students from the Faculty of Science and Engineering in John Dalton for the Manchester Science Festival Science Extravaganza. MetMUnch’s cardboard kitchen was transformed into Dracula’s Creepy Carbon Kitchen, and students helped children investigate ways to cut Dracula’s carbon footprint by reducing his energy use in the home. MetMUnch also gave away augmented reality recipes and special MiniMUnchers activity booklets to children and their parents.

Lecturer in Science Communication Dr Sam Illingworth said: “A massive thank you to you and your team for helping to make Science Extravaganza so special. We had 253 visitors and every one of them loved it.”SciEx 2

The above follows a range of events held by MetMUnch around Manchester Met this academic year, including the opening of a one-day-only pop-up Apple Store (with real apples instead of iPhones), cooking 700 portions of free curry and soup for Birley Community Day, and holding interactive cooking, budget and nutrition lessons for students, including introducing kitchen basics to 3,000 new students on Welcome Sunday.

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MMU Welcome Festival

It’s Freshers’ Week here at MMU so we threw a big party on Sunday for all our new students!

The turnout outside the Business School was amazing and we’re already impressed with the energy, enthusiasm and hunger for knowledge from our 2015 Freshers!

TV chef Richard Fox joined us to cook student-friendly meals like handmade pizza, fishcakes and a delicious veggie biryani – we’ll be adding all these recipes to MetMUnch.com.  We also handed out free fruit, gave nutritional advice and cooking tips, and held a vote to find the most popular of our seven new Augmented Reality recipes (also coming to our site this week!).

A big MMU welcome to all our new students – check out our photos of the day and stick with MetMUnch for all your nutritional needs!

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