the most sustainable prawns to buy this christmas

Posted on December 12th, 2013

I’m not sure if you’re aware but prawns – or shrimp – are an ecological and ethical disaster waiting for a barbie to be thrown atop.

Image via One Bite More

Image via One Bite More

I wasn’t…until recently. My uncle Pete was a trawler. We ate them every Christmas. And in fried rice when Mum made it for one of my brother’s birthdays most years. But I, like many of us, care more about this kind of thing these days. I care, and I want to act right. So prawns…

As with all my sustainable eating posts, I don’t suggest banning foods. I advise making better/best choices. And using up leftovers and the whole animal/vegetable/mineral. Wastage is the real ethical/eco crime, to my mind. In time for Christmas I decided to research this bottom dweller issue and share what I found, so we you, too, can get real to your shrimp.

Why are prawns a problem?

The bycatch is shocking:  I’ve heard anecdotally that

for every prawn caught, 27 other species are caught in the bycatch and tossed away.

World Wildlife Fund (WWF) best describes this issue here, claiming:

Tropical shrimp trawling (TST) has one of the largest bycatch rates of all fishing techniques and often damages the ocean´s seafloor.”

Bottom trawling is shocking: it destroys coral and has a detrimental affect on the seafloor. Seafloors are vital to the health of coral forests, seagrass beds, kelp forests and deep sea thermal vents.

Many of the prawns we buy are imported. About 70 per cent of the seafood Australians consume is from OS. Which is an issue because many countries don’t fish their prawns sustainably. Tropical shrimp farms in Asia  - where much of our prawns come from – destroy coastal mangroves.

So, what to look for?

As I say, I’m not about banning prawns. It’s about getting smart and mindful. There are tricks.

1. Look for Marine Stewardship Council- certified. Ask your monger if the prawns they’re selling are as such. MSC is the biggest fishery standard (with more than 200,000 fish covered in over 15 countries) and therefore this first port of call is probably your safest bet, wherever you are in the world. MSC-certified prawns are trawled on sandy or muddy ocean floors and cause minimal impact to the habitat and ecosystem. But, somewhat contentiously, not all their recommended prawns are low-bycatch.

The Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) is also setting up, and when farms start to become certified by them you’ll be able to look out Read more

The I Quit Sugar Christmas Cookbook is here!

Posted on November 25th, 2013

Ready for your simplest and healthiest sugar-free Christmas ever? I’m excited to share my UPDATED I Quit Sugar Christmas Cookbook with you today – hot off the press, with six meal plans designed specifically to help you enjoy a simple, joyful, and healthy, nutritious sugar-free Christmas. Plus, a bonus Thanksgiving meal plan (just in time for Thanksgiving this Thursday!).

Pumpkin ginger spice granola, photography by Marija Ivkovic

Pumpkin ginger spice granola, photography by Marija Ivkovic

Here’s a little taste of what’s included:

  • six unique meal plan styles (to follow strictly or mix and match)
  • over 75 sugar-free Christmas-inspired recipes
  • gluten and grain free, Paleo and vegan options
  • sugar-free cocktails designed exclusively for I Quit Sugar by Trolley’d
  • shopping lists, conversion charts and more!

All for the sweet price of $19. Simply click on the button below to order your copy today!

BUY NOW

If you’re debating a Thanksgiving dinner this year, the Thanksgiving Banquet Meal Plan includes all your traditional favourites…but with an I Quit Sugar spin. Think Chai Spiced Eggnog Shots, Spiced Raspberry Sauce (yes), Stupidly Simple Turkey, Beetroot and Apple Relish Read more

24 ways to have a sustainable christmas

Posted on November 21st, 2013

Allow me to climb upon my favourite soapbox once again. Food waste. It’s a terrible thing.

Image via Better Homes and Gardens

Image via Better Homes and Gardens

Let me bullet it out…

* Food wastage is the biggest environmental issue facing the planet today.

* We consumers are responsible for 50 per cent of all food wastage.

* The average Australian tosses out 20 per cent of their weekly shop, and Australians waste $8 billion worth of food annually… from households alone.

* The waste kills me. The claim that many of us can’t afford good food also kills me when the painfully obvious thing to do is to cut costs by cutting waste. See my simple drift? You can catch up here.

This Christmas I’m on a sustainability mission, so I’ve put together A Little Listicle to hopefully help us all minimise waste and eat more sustainably. Here you go my friends:

1. Use leftover pumpkin or sweet potato from your roast to sweeten sauces, soups and casseroles. Puree your leftover pumpkin or sweet potato and add it to red sauces (chilli dishes and curries) and “yellow” cheesy dishes.

2. Make smoothie green ice cubes. Puree leftover green veggies – from salads or sides – and freeze in ice-cube trays. Pop a few in your morning smoothie.

3. Use leftover wine to make homemade vinegar. This is a clever tip from Jamie Oliver. He suggests decanting your wine dregs into a bottle (1/2 full) and then wrapping it in cling wrap and a tea towel. Leave it in your car boot (yes) for a month and you’re left with lovely acidic vinegar you can use for dressings and sauces.

4. Freeze your leftover egg whites. Perhaps you use a few yolks in your nog…freeze the whites in an ice cube tray. Then transfer to a freezer container to store. (Make sure you thaw them completely before using – they’ll beat better at room temperature.)

 5. Use your chicken or turkey carcass to make up a stock. There’s also a recipe here for my mum’s chicken soup!

6. Got leftover cauliflower? Here’s some of my favourite cauliflower recipes to try.

7. Invite your neighbours for a post Chrissy bubble and squeak – celebrate twice! Valentina from New Romantic says: You can also whip up a turkey stir fry or roast vegetable salad. If you have made a roast beef, dry it out and make some jerky.

8. Got leftover lemons and limes? Juice and freeze in ice-cube trays ready to add to smoothies.

9. Freeze things in a thin layer in zip-lock bags, so you can “snap off” what you need as you go…

10. Dice and freeze leftover onions, celery, capsicum and tomato ready for soups and casseroles.

11. Turn your sliced ham leftovers into Ham Croquettes. Tim Elwin from Urban Food Market recommends this for your leftover Read more