Please Theresa, can I have some more?

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has said that stockpiling food may be the most responsible action in light of Brexit. In a no-deal Brexit situation, food shortages are predicted to hit within a couple of weeks.

‘At the moment, less than half of the food we eat comes from Britain.’

But I’m a student. I don’t have the money, or the space, to stockpile. What can I eat in the future EU-less, apparently food-less UK?

At the moment, less than half of the food we eat comes from Britain (The Guardian). Around 30% of all the food we eat in the UK comes from the EU, and 40% of fresh produce, predominantly fruit and vegetables, are imported from our European neighbours. This means that out of season fruit and vegetables that don’t grow here can be discounted – get eating seasonally! But that’s not the end of it.

‘We’ll always have Marmite. Maybe you should start loving that.’

Let’s start with some student classics. Pasta, rice, tinned beans and chickpeas, tinned fish and tomatoes (in all their forms) are all gone. All those bits you put in your food to make it taste yummy – spices, chilli, herbs, olive oil, pepper, olives, capers? Yeah, they’re all out too. Sorry. Perhaps worst of all, cheese is in danger. And not just your brie, manchego and gouda, but also your cheddar as over 80% of that comes from Ireland. What a disaster.

At this point you’re understandably slightly concerned, so reach for a nice glass of wine – no that’s an EU import too. As is gin. If that’s your tipple of choice, maybe find a new one.

What’s left? Anything? We’ve still got flour, sugar, salt, oats, mustard, lentils, vinegar (although no balsamic – just apple cider) and of course, we’ll always have Marmite. Maybe you should start loving that.

But that’s not quite a meal yet is it?! Using seasonal British veg, here’s a recipe that uses what we’ve got left. Pudding is marmite on toast!

British Veg Roast

1 butternut squash

3 parsnips

2 carrots

200g Brussel sprouts

4 tbsp rapeseed oil

2 leeks

2 sticks of celery

1 stock cube

1.5 litre water

500g lentils

1 tsp mustard

2 tsp apple cider vinegar. 

½ tsp sugar

Salt

 

  1. Pre heat the oven to 200⁰C. Chop the butternut squash, parsnips and carrots into 1-inch pieces. Place into a large roasting tray, toss with 1 tbsp rapeseed oil and season with salt (we have no pepper…). Place into the oven and roast for about 20 minutes. 
  2. Add the halved sprouts and cook for another 10 minutes until everything is soft and some of the edges are crispy. 
  3. While the veg is roasting, heat 1 tbsp oil in a large, heavy saucepan (or a Dutch oven – wait, will we still have them?!). Gently cook your finely chopped leeks, and celery over a medium heat until soft. 
  4. Add in a stock cube, and water and bring to a simmer. 
  5. Add in lentils and cook, stirring occasionally for about 15 minutes. 
  6. In a small bowl, mix together the mustard, vinegar, sugar, 1 tsp salt and the remaining oil. Taste to check for seasoning. 
  7. When everything is cooked, mix the dressing into the lentils and plate up by piling the veg on top of the lentils and serve warm.

Photograph: Robert Cause-Baker via Flickr

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