30 Apr Independent food businesses to support during lockdown
These days I’ve been spending more time online, as many of us are. It’s been fantastic to see everyone creatively finding new ways to connect and reach out to each other. A few weeks ago I read a blog post by super fashion content creator Victoria aka inthefrow called 101 independent businesses to support during the Covid-19 outbreak. I thought it would be fun to do a similar thing specifically for the food industry.
It’s important to show local businesses some love and support especially through these uncertain moments. Consider buying a gift voucher or donating the price of your coffee to the cafe you would normally visit on a daily basis. Even small gestures will be greatly appreciated.
Here are some which I’ve found through personal recommendations, social media and good old Google – speaking of which, I also use Ecosia as a search engine. The Berlin based carbon negative company donates over 80% of its profits to non-profit organisations which focus on reforestation. The more you search, the more trees get planted so download it asap! On the same tangent, if you’re ordering from Amazon use AmazonSmile instead. There will not be any difference in your shopping experience or prices but Amazon will donate a portion of that purchase price to your selected charity. Why they don’t make AmazonSmile the norm I have no idea – come on Amazon, commit!
Oddbox – A genius delivery service which saves fresh food at risk of becoming waste. They take the misshapen or surplus produce from farms to homes and offices across London. I have a bi-monthly subscription of the small veg box which works perfectly for two people. At £9.44 a box it’s a no brainer – anything to minimise the fact that over a third of food produced gets wasted.
The Rotten Fruit box – Borne from wanting to save fallen fruit from being discarded, founder Tony realised by freeze drying this fruit he could help small scale farmers get more income as well as preventing waste. 100% natural freeze dried fruit snack pouches delivered in compostable packaging.
ISH Fish – Fresh fish home delivery from the historic fishing port of Grimsby. Sustainably fished, good for your health and uses waste conscious packaging. Great for stocking up your freezer.
Food Chain – Wholesale company originally for the catering industry now specially adapted for the everyday consumer. Brilliant way to get food from the source. There’s a whole variety of product, some now offering pre-selected boxes to make it easier for households to shop. Helps support producers whose usual customers simply aren’t buying anymore because they have had to close. Suppliers include Chegworth Valley, Dulwich Pantry and Hive & Keeper.
Cobble Lane Cured – I’ve been following Cobble Lane Cured for a year or so – amazing butcher in Islington producing pancetta, beef jerky, Bresaola, Mangalitza Coppa to name but a few. I’ve got my eye on the fennel and garlic salami. Wonderful handmade product – proper skills.
The Butchery – Spitalfields butcher shop currently delivering to locations across East/South East London. Their meat is UK bred and high welfare. I’ve seen chefs using their meat and it looks divine.
Kupros Dairy – The main product is Anglum, similar to halloumi cheese. This North London dairy sells two types – one made from 100% sheep milk, the other a mixture of Jersey cow and sheep milk. NHS workers get 30% discount, everyone else gets 25% so make the most of it!
My Gluten Free Bakery – South-London based bakery founded by Rana. A coeliac herself, she set up My GFB as she missed bread so much. My favourite picks are the sourdough baguettes and Italian sourdough loaf. They also sell baking kits and flour blends. Take a look at their bread making tips, tricks and recipes for expert advice.
Incredible Bakery Company – Tasty bread that excludes the 14 most common food allergens such as gluten, dairy, egg, soya. They’ve won many awards including Britain’s Best Loaf 2019 – Gluten Free for their cinnamon and raisin boule.
Borough 22 Doughnuts – Super pretty and delicious gluten free/vegan doughnuts. Check out their instagram, there’s no way you will not want one. If it’s good enough for Selfridges…
Romeo’s Sugar Free Bakery – Delicious treats whether you are allergen sensitive or not. Their menu reads like a dream: pomegranate cheesecake, roasted veg quiche, walnut tart. What’s more you can still schedule cake orders, hooray!
Wild Loaf – No stranger to Minn’s Munchtime readers, Wild Loaf has opened for delivery within a four mile radius from Liverpool city centre. Due to their small team it’s not on a regular basis so keep an eye on their instagram but it will be worth it for all the baked goodies you could receive! I am craving their croissants and cinnamon buns. Regretting not trying their Babka before I left Liverpool…one day!
Cafe Rasa Malaysia – ‘Keep calm, wash your hands and order Nasi Goreng’ – absolutely! As well as their own deliveries they have teamed up with Mercy Malaysia UK providing iftar and sahoon meals to NHS workers, refugee centres and the homeless during Ramadan.
Purezza – The UK’s first vegan pizzeria. Doing a stellar job delivering hot pizzas to hospitals across London and Brighton.
Brew Tea Co – This Mancunian company provides no fuss high quality tea. Options to Subscribe & Save as well as collecting points or ‘Brew Coins’ for great discounts. I’ve been enjoying their loose leaf Yunnan green tea.
Toast Ale – Another waste minimiser by using surplus bread instead of virgin barley to create great tasting beer. Mr Munch is a fan. Refreshing with citrus IPA notes. They donate meals with your purchases – one beer equals one meal. Excellent folk all round.
Sorakami – A saké subscription service. Why is it hardly drunk in the UK? Sorakami hopes to change that by providing sommelier curated saké from artisan brewers to your door.
Michelin Guide – Homemade recipes from Michelin starred chefs shared with #michelinguideathome for us to try in our own homes. Examples are Hélène Darroze’s berry pavlova, Marcus Wareing’s baked honeycomb pudding and Rawia & Jumana Bishara’s harissa chicken. They’ve included an occasional ‘straight from the restaurant’ recipe should you be feeling fancy/like a challenge!
Sambal Shiok – Mandy Yin’s wonderful laksa bar may be temporarily closed but her instagram is alive with step by step recipes and live cooking sessions. Highlights such as Nasi Lemak, curry puffs and fried noodles will get you cooking in no time.
Telltalefood – Farmer, cook and acting mother to new born goats/lambs/chicks, Julius Roberts is not idle during quarantine. He will make you crave wild garlic, fresh eggs, gnocchi and focaccia. Also, baby goats on a trampoline? So cute.
Wagyumafia – Obsessed with all things wagyu, Hisato Hamada’s instagram is a drool fest. His stories are full of more attainable Japanese dishes like how to make the perfect egg sando or gyozas and of course, slurping much ramen.
If you like cheese be sure to join the British Cheese Weekender (8-10 May). The online extravaganza features live streamed tastings, talks, farms tours and cooking demonstrations across social media. I’m looking forward to hearing Catherine Mead’s secrets of making a World Champion Cheese, behind the scenes at Neal’s Yard Dairy and how to pair cheese with whisky from the Fine Cheese Co. in Bath. ? ?
I hope this is useful – let me know if you’ve bought from these businesses before or are filling your online carts as we speak! I’d love to know what your favourite local shops are. Please give this post a like if you enjoyed it and follow me on instagram for more #minnsmunchtime fun.