#16 A Simplicious Challenge: A Sustainable Giveaway

As this challenge draws very nearly to a close – I will be finished in the next couple of weeks – I’ve been planning to host a little giveaway, as a way of saying thank-you to you for sticking with me through it over the last 18 months. Including through my more intense phases, like when I turned into the Christmas Grinch and went all weird in IKEA!

I realise it sounds hypocritical to host a giveaway when much of this challenge has been about re-thinking my relationship with ‘stuff’, but – hear me out!

There are a couple of investments I’ve made over this time that have helped me to consume more sustainably in other ways. I bought a 12oz JOCO Cup, a keep cup made from glass, which has hugely reduced the number of disposable coffee cups I use. I also found a 500ml stainless steel Cheeki water bottle, which fits in my handbag and saves me from buying single-use bottles of water when I’m out and about. I think there’s an interesting tension in minimalism, where for some it’s simply about not owning more ‘things’, even if this equates to using more disposable items, which ultimately takes a toll on the planet. I absolutely think it makes sense to spend money on certain things where possible, to keep long-term, to seek to reduce our environmental impact.

There are eleven chances to win in this Simplicious Challenge Giveaway, including:

  1. JOCO Cups: I am giving away a 12oz JOCO Cup, and the nice people at JOCO have also offered to add in a further two. JOCO Cups are 100% plastic free.
  2. Cheeki stainless-steel water bottle: I am giving away a 500ml stainless steel water bottle, and the kind folk at Cheeki have also offered a insulated 600ml bottle, and a 350ml coffee mug, which keeps contents hot for up to 12 hours, or cold for up to 24 hours.
  3. Sarah Wilson has very generously offered to give away FIVE copies of her Simplicious cookbook! Perfect for those who are thinking of giving this a try; or to give to a friend.

This competition is being held over on my Instagram account, so please visit @erin_dreamingofalmonds and refer to each of the three posts – feel free to enter all three! The competition is open to Australian residents and closes at midnight on Friday 5 May 2017.

SIMPLICIOUS CHALLENGE GIVEAWAY (1/3): Over the last 18 months, I invested in a couple of items that helped me to consume more sustainably. A perfectly sized JOCO Cup from @jococups provides an alternative to disposable coffee cups. Did you know that over 500 billion disposable cups are used annually, and most end up in landfill? The JOCO Cup is 100% plastic-free and even has a NOSE DOME for people with slightly larger noses (like me πŸ˜‚)! I’m giving away a 12oz JOCO cup, and the good people at @jococups have generously offered a further two more as well (three chances to win!). To enter, tag two friends and share a tip about how you try to reduce waste or consume mindfully. This competition is open to Australian residents and closes at midnight on Friday 5 May 2017. πŸ‘ Tomorrow night I'll share Part 2 of the giveaway. Hope you all had a good day! xx This is in no way sponsored, administered, or associated with Instagram, Inc. By entering, entrants confirm they are 13+ years of age, release Instagram of responsibility, and agree to Instagram's term of use. πŸ“Έ @jococups . #simplicious #simpliciouschallenge #simplicious306 #iqs #iqsjerf #jerf #iqs8wp #sustainability #environment #giveaway #win #competition #green #plasticfree #ethical #ecofriendly #zerowaste

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SIMPLICIOUS CHALLENGE GIVEAWAY (2/3): The second item I invested in which helped me to consume more sustainably was a stainless steel water bottle. I came across @cheeki_bottles 500ml stainless steel bottle, small enough to fit in my bag, preventing the need to buy single-use (and overpriced! 😳) plastic water bottles while out and about. You only need to refill the bottle 9 times to β€˜break even’. I’m giving away one of these 500ml bottles and the lovely folks at @cheeki_bottles have kindly offered to add an insulated 600ml bottle and 350ml coffee mug which keep contents hot for up to 12 hours and cold for up to 24 – three chances to win! To enter, tag two friends and share a tip about how you try to reduce waste or consume mindfully (loved reading all the tips on yesterday's post!). This competition is open to Australian residents and closes at midnight on Friday 5 May 2017. Hang around for Part 3 tomorrow night (and feel free to enter all of them)! This is in no way sponsored, administered, or associated with Instagram, Inc. By entering, entrants confirm they are 13+ years of age, release Instagram of responsibility, and agree to Instagram's term of use. πŸ“Έ @cheeki_bottles . #simplicious #simpliciouschallenge #simplicious306 #iqs #iqsjerf #jerf #iqs8wp #sustainability #environment #giveaway #win #competition #green #plasticfree #ethical #ecofriendly #zerowaste

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SIMPLICIOUS CHALLENGE GIVEAWAY (3/3): Of course, it wouldn't be a Simplicious giveaway without Simplicious! @_sarahwilson_ herself has generously offered to give away FIVE brand new copies of her epic and thoughtful cookbook, which I am incredibly grateful for. Thank-you Sarah. If you're interested in real, simple food, as well as creative ways to use leftovers, you will love this book. If you already own Simplicious (I know many of you do! πŸ˜‚), perhaps you'd like to win a copy for a friend? I've bought three copies over the last 18 months as gifts for people because it's such a great cookbook! To enter, tag two friends and share one of your favourite ways to use leftovers. This competition is open to Australian residents only and closes at midnight on Friday 5 May 2017. You're welcome to enter all three parts of the competition. πŸ‘ . This is in no way sponsored, administered, or associated with Instagram, Inc. By entering, entrants confirm they are 13+ years of age, release Instagram of responsibility, and agree to Instagram's term of use. . #simplicious #simpliciouschallenge #simplicious306 #iqs #iqsjerf #jerf #iqs8wp #sustainability #environment #giveaway #win #competition #green #plasticfree #ethical #ecofriendly #zerowaste #cookbook #sarahwilson

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The food:

Over April, I made 18 recipes from Simplicious:

  • Mandarin and Thyme Fizz (p 347): I haven’t had much luck with the fizzy drinks in Simplicious. They’ve generally been too salty. This one was too bitter, surprisingly (although I suspect that was my own fault from using waaaay too much mandarin).
  • Cauliflower Tartines with Green Goddess Dressing and Hazelnuts (p 184): We served this alongside roast chicken, and it made me wonder why I don’t eat cauliflower more often (which I think every time I eat it!). It was delicious. My tip is NOT to include the hazelnuts during cooking (mine burnt to a crisp) but to add them fresh at the end.
Cauliflower Tartines with Green Goddess Dressing and Hazelnuts from Simplicious

Cauliflower Tartines with Green Goddess Dressing and Hazelnuts from Simplicious

  • The Fish That Got Away Pie (p 261): I’m afraid I don’t have a photo for this one, as I had the flu! My husband made it for me instead, while I basically slept in bed all day. He made it with the orange nutty crust. It was nice.
  • Tam Tims (p 274): These were a little fiddly to make, but so worth it. And they even passed the Tim Tam trick with a cup of hot tea! I ate way more than my fair share (although I was the one who made them, I suppose….).
Tam Tims from Simplicious

Tam Tims from Simplicious

  • Peanut Butter Slow-Bro Fudge (p 282): This is a variation of the slow-bro brownies. I loved the original version, with its mild miso flavour – and realised that I’d accidentally doubled the amount of miso in these ones. They were strong!!
  • Entree-and-Main-In-One Kokonda (p 158): I’ve got to admit, I was not keen on making this, especially I unwrapped the whole fish my husband had bought and I saw its big wobbly eye. I wasn’t particularly keen on the fish stock entree, but the main itself was surprisingly good, light and refreshing. And not too fishy. This would be a lovely summer dish.
Entree and main in one kokonda from Simplicious

Entree and main in one kokonda from Simplicious

  • Beginner’s Coq Au Vin Pate (p 196): I was quite looking forward to this as I was making it. Leeks, mushroom, bacon, white wine, what’s not to like? It was smelling good, looking good… then I added the livers and it all went downhill. It’s just so livery. I want to like pate, I really do. But I suspect I would much prefer it if it was liver-free! I may experiment…
  • Probiotic Berries ‘n’ Cream Chews (p 351): Mine were not probiotic, because I didn’t want to buy the expensive capsules, but they were delicious! I added beetroot powder for extra colour. The kids loved them!
Probiotic berries 'n' cream chews from Simplicious

Probiotic berries ‘n’ cream chews from Simplicious

  • Homemade Paneer (p 48): I was so looking forward to this one! I had fun making it… and then I was a bit devastated when I went to pan-fry it and it all just fell apart into a big melty mess. I can only assume I didn’t squeeze enough liquid out of it, although it had ‘looked’ right.
  • Spiced Paneer ‘n’ Peas (p 110): I ended up using store-bought paneer for this dish, but it was yummy and VERY filling – probably because I ate both serves. πŸ˜€ I used the leftover paneer to make:
  • Any Green Saag Paneer (p 177): This was really good and full of flavour yummy – we served this with rice, and I also made a dahl to go alongside. Plus we had:
  • Indian Sprouts Raita (p 352): An easy to make and extra nutritious raita. With extra sprouts I made:
  • Inside-Out Sprouted Kitcheri Loaf (p 114): I was dubious about a loaf that contained a big pile of mung bean sprouts, but this was quite tasty – I told the kids it was ‘curry bread’. In the end I only had a few pieces, as my husband polished off the lot!
  • Gribiche Sauce Plate (p 252): This sauce/mayo combination, which I served on boiled eggs, is tangy and delicious with its capers and mustard. I will definitely whip this up again. I used a few celery leaves to garnish, and the rest of the celery in:
  • Braised Celery and Leeks with Vanilla (p 170): My husband wasn’t overly fussed on this but I really enjoyed it – sweetish, with a little crunch still. We had it alongside chicken schnitzel and mash.
Gribiche Sauce Plate from Simplicious

Gribiche Sauce Plate from Simplicious

  • Bone Marrow Bombs (p 245): Ok, I have to confess. I had a total failure with these. My husband (yes I sent him out for the whole fish AND the bone marrow AND the chicken livers!) went to several butchers looking for it, and they all looked at him like he was mad. One gave him bone marrow bones. Which we thought we could use instead, but they didn’t seem to have any marrow. I spent ages googling, to no avail. So we decided to make beef stock with them instead… and then I found them in the fridge a week later. I know, total failure. 😦 Check out Anita’s, hers look great! I did however, successfully make the other soup topper:
  • Harissa Cream Cheese Bombs (p 245): Served with a sweet potato and pumpkin soup (my kids’ favourite).
  • Off the Wagon Wheel (p 278): The third delightful slice recipe didn’t disappoint – the marshmallow was cool! Make sure you let the gelatin mixture cool down before whipping in a blender (I put it in the fridge for 10 minutes). A ganache topping rather than chocolate might help to prevent the chocolate topping from cracking.
Off the Wagon Wheels from Simplicious

Off the Wagon Wheels from Simplicious

And that is 298 recipes down (albeit with a failed attempt at bone marrow bombs), and 8 recipes to go. I have saved these final 8 for a celebration lunch next weekend, all things going well – the whole roast cauliflower, smoked salmon, plus side dishes, and of course… that chocolate ganache tart.

Read the previous post here: #15 A Simplicious Challenge – Finding flow through connection.

Read the next post here: #17 A Simplicious Challenge – A Celebration Meal.

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