Recently while waiting around for a flight in Kuala Lumpur, I happened to catch one of those lame prankster shows on the gate television. Although the show provided some cheap smirks there was a little more powerful lesson that came out of the experience.
The lesson wasn’t about the effects of television or the reality shows themselves. The lesson was actually in one of the pranks, and it was a positive one. Although it seemed to me pretty obvious that this little prank was set up with all its really poor prop quality, it nevertheless reminded me that in general, most people do care.
So the prank. A fake birds nest sitting on a rock, in the middle of nowhere at about chest height and full of very fake looking little eggs. People notice it and start to have a closer look, then just as they are engrossed in its contents, bang, a soccer ball lands right in the middle of it. Some guys playing with the soccer ball, over and over again, accidentally kick the ball and it lands smack bang in the centre of the nest. Smashing the eggs. (There may have been one or two fake little birds in there as well, I can’t be positive though).
Each prank victim after prank victim, seemed to generally be annoyed with what happened and every single person was devastated about the destruction of the birds / eggs.
Although just a silly show, it was very encouraging to feel that in general, I think most people care about fellow creatures and the environment. Though they either don’t know what to do to help, they are very busy themselves and think there is no room for some little changes in their lives or they are just blissful in their ignorance.
With this in mind, I want to say that there is every reason why we should lead by example and just make small adjustments in our lives that will show others how easy it is. Help someone get started where you can and just show them that this isn’t really rocket science or something that requires loads of extra money or time. It is as simple as choosing a few more products that aren’t packaged in plastic, picking up the odd piece of rubbish in the local park or beach, riding your bike to work once a week or planting a tree somewhere.
Of course food is a large source of waste and drain on resources across the planet. We’ve spoken about the waste created through packaging, processing and transport etc. So something you can do that is super simple and is great at any scale is purchase or grow unprocessed produce where you can and make something yourself at home. Something as tasty, healthy and enjoyable as cooking from scratch is one of the best services you can do for this little rock we are spinning around on in space.
So to make it easy, I am going to include a delicious cookie recipe from one of our readers. You don’t have to follow the exact ingredients, you can wing it a little and make it up. The main thing is you have a go yourself, the rewards will be so worth it in the end.
Over to you Emma.
Vegan oat and raisin biscuits
These biscuits are delicious! You won’t know or care that they’re vegan and low fat…This is my version of the Oh She Glows Ultimate Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookie. This recipe has reduced the sugar considerably.
- 2 cups raw unsalted nuts (almonds, hazelnuts, brazil nuts and walnuts all work well)
- 2 cups rolled oats, divided in half
- ¾ cup flour (you can use white, wholemeal or rye, or other similar alternatives)
- ¼ cup sugar (brown, palm, white, whatever), or replace with stevia powder or leave out altogether
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp roasted wattle seed
- ¼ tsp cloves
- ½ cup liquid sweetener (maple syrup, golden syrup, coconut syrup or similar)
- 2 tbsp milk (soy, rice, almond, etc)
- 4 tbsp oil (coconut, almond or light olive oil all work well)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½-1 cup raisins or other dried fruit depending on how sweet you like your biscuits
I cook the biscuits in a solar oven, but they can be done in a conventional oven too. The directions below are for a conventional oven.
- Heat the oven to 180C.
- Toast the nuts until lightly toasted (8-10 minutes at 180C). Let them cool and then whizz them in a for a few seconds in a food processor until ground into a coarse flour.
- Prepare a baking tray with a coating of olive oil or line it with baking paper or a silicon mat.
- Place half the oats (1 cup) in a large bowl and mix with the flour, sugar if using, baking powder and spices. Add the mixture to the ground nuts and whizz them all together in the food processor until thoroughly combined and the oats have broken down.
- In a small bowl, mix together the liquid sweetener, milk, oil and vanilla extract, warming the oil first if it is not liquid to start with. Add the liquids to the food processor and whizz together until the mixture is well combined. It should be pretty moist and even a bit gluggy.
- Pour the biscuit mix back into the large bowl you used for the dry ingredients, and add the second cup of rolled oats and the raisins, mixing well with a wooden spoon or with your hands until thoroughly combined.
- Make up the mixture into balls (about 2tbs of mix each), and place them on the baking tray. Flatten and spread them out a bit with the palm of your hand. Leave a bit of a space between biscuits to allow for expansion.
- Bake at 180C for ten minutes until lightly coloured. Be careful not to overcook these biscuits; they will be quite soft when you take them out of the oven, so leave them to sit for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
I know its been coming a long time but it really is getting close now. Stay tuned.