The more you eat them, the longer you live.

 

Self-confessed veg nerds, Riverford Organic Farmers, have their finger on the pulse in Southampton, helping to prevent heart disease. Wessex Heartbeat have joined forces with Riverford in a campaign to raise awareness of the benefits of an organic and healthy food lifestyle in combatting heart related health problems.

Wessex Heartbeat have joined Riverford’s Veg Fund, where Riverford make a charity donation for every new customer; they are planning inspirational Charity Master Veg events, with hands-on classes for those who require help to get to grips with the green stuff. Finally, Riverford will be the key in supporting patients who require longer-term follow up assistance with their diet and food education through the Wessex Heartbeat’s Wellness Programme – Healthy Hearts.

John Munro, CEO of Wessex Heartbeat said: “We are delighted to have Riverford as our organic partner for Wessex Heartbeat. They bring a wonderfully fresh approach to the charity,  which reinforces our key messages: that an organic and healthy food lifestyle is so important for prevention, as well as rehab for our heart patients.”

Wessex Heartbeat’s Veg Fund code is VegFund7: simply enter the code at the checkout to ensure Wessex Heartbeat get your donation, online at www.riverford.co.uk or quote the code to customer services on 01893 227227. (Riverford will donate £15 for every household after three boxes).

Chicken, broad bean and new potato stew

serves 4

If you love one-pot dinners; this one is simple to cook and shouts of summer days.

3 tbsp sunflower or light olive oil, for frying

4 chicken thighs and 4 drumsticks

2 small or 1 large onion, finely sliced

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped or grated

500ml dry cider

2 bay leaves

300ml good chicken or veg stock

200g podded broad beans

800g new potatoes, cut in half or quarters, depending on size

2 tbsp double cream or crème fraîche

2 tbsp wholegrain mustard, or to taste

large handful of tarragon leaves, roughly chopped

salt and pepper

Heat the oil in a large pan, add the chicken and fry over a medium–high heat, turning now and then, until golden brown. Remove to a plate. Add the onion to the same pan, add more oil if needed, fry on a low heat for 10 minutes stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and fry, stirring, for 2 more minutes.

Add the cider, bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Return the chicken to the pan, along with any juices from the plate. Add the bay leaves, stock and season with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

While the chicken pot is simmering, boil the broad beans for 2–3 minutes in another pan of boiling water. Drain, refresh in a bowl of cold water, then remove the outer skin.

Add the potatoes to the chicken pot. Cover and simmer for a further 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are just tender. Check the chicken is cooked through (pierce the thickest part of the joint with a sharp knife; the juice should run clear). If drying out, add water or stock. Throw in the broad beans and cream. Simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the mustard to taste, then the tarragon. Serve.

Cauliflower, butter beans & kale

Serves 2

This is a robust vegetable salad, best served warm or at room temperature so that the flavours from the dressing have a chance to infuse.

200g cooked butter beans

1 cauliflower, cut into small florets

100g red Russian kale, blanched, squeezed & roughly chopped

1 tbsp capers, rinsed & drained

leaves from a small bunch of tarragon or flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped

wholegrain mustard, to taste

vinaigrette, to taste

salt & black pepper

If you are cooking the beans yourself, add a good pinch of salt when they have become tender and let them sit in their cooking water for 30 minutes off the heat. If using tinned, heat them gently but thoroughly in their liquid and a dash of water. Lightly steam or boil the cauliflower. Drain the beans and put them into a bowl with the cauliflower, kale, capers, herbs, a generous blob of mustard and a good drizzle of vinaigrette and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

Variation

This is a great way to use up leftover or tinned pulses; lentils and flageolet and haricot beans will all work well – or, for a more varied texture, try a combination of all three.

 

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