This week’s guest for Eco Tuesday is the world-traveling Carol Taylor! Many of you may know her from her blog or from her food column over at Smorgasbord, but you may not know that both her slow cooker and her cooking pans have been around the globe with her. Read on to discover what makes Carol’s Kitchen “green”!
Carol is a foodie who is passionate about the environment and the right to buy food without chemicals and preservatives…wherever possible she cooks from scratch using food that is either home grown or purchased from sustainable sources…She states she will never be a vegan/vegetarian but increasingly eats less meat and more vegetable based dishes. Waste is something that she is also very aware of and uses every part of the food she cooks and eats…if it can be pickled and preserved then it will be plus also to reduce the amount of energy that is used in her kitchen she batch cooks not in such great quantities as she did when her family were all young but always cooks enough to freeze at least 2 portions this all saves energy and time…she is also a believer in letting children help in the kitchen and children who help to cook eat what they cook no fussy kids in her house…On her trip to the UK recently it was such a pleasure for Carol to see her children and grandchildren cooking and to be able to swap ideas and recipes…
Thank you, Willow for inviting me to answers some questions for your blog…
Willow Croft: I see from your blog/your column on Smorgasbord Blog Magazine that you sometimes take the “Green Kitchen” on the road—collecting regional recipes and visiting local farmer’s/food markets. What’s your favourite market you’d like to return to, and/or what’s the most interesting recipe you’ve discovered?
Carol Taylor: I am blessed with having great fresh markets here where I live but my favourite markets are Borough Market in London where the stall holders interact with the shoppers and even make a quick dish with mushrooms for example…not only does it show you the customer the wide variety of mushrooms you can use but what tasty dishes you can make very quickly and of course for recompence the stall holder sells lots of mushrooms…Likewise the cheese. bread and other stalls all put on a demo for the customers…it is a great market visit with lots of history and great eating places.
Also it has to be the floating markets in Bangkok of which there are about 13 where you hop on a boat and the pilot of the boat can guide you close to the stall if you are interested in his wares plus there is the excitement of when the trains pass through one of the markets and as if by clockwork the stall holders raise their canopies in unison and remove their track side goods back a little…
Most interesting recipe…that’s a difficult one for me Willow as I cook all the time plus we like most fruits and vegetables but for me learning to shop my fridge which is not actually a recipe but having for so many years been recipe driven I have now learnt to look at the food I have and think about what I can make from that… this often means that instead of shopping and buying everything a recipe quotes I may only need to buy 1 or 2 items if that… this in turn means that I never throw food away and use what I have before I buy more…If I discover I can for example use strawberry stems and make a powder to add to ice cream or a muffin mix or pickle watermelon rinds that to me is interesting and using the whole fruit wasting nothing.
Willow Croft: As I need to ditch my own toxic Teflon frying pan, I loved the part of your post (I have pans that date back to the 70s I think, if not older) on Teflon-free alternatives: https://carolcooks2.com/2022/06/08/carol-taylors-green-kitchen-june/. So, in tribute to that post, what’s your most-used cookware in Carol Taylor’s Green Kitchen?
Carol Taylor: I stir fry most days and cook curries in my wok on other days; But because I cook every day my pans are in constant use… but numero one is my wok…Closely followed by my slow cooker which has travelled the world with me but now has finally been retired due to some small cracks so for safety she had to go but I will be replacing her…
However I do believe in buying the best pans you can as mine have been around the world with me and are still in constant use and as good as new.
Willow Croft: In addition to your tips on buying local, growing your own food, and recycling/composting, you’re a strong advocate for conservation, especially of the ocean and marine life forms. If you could transform yourself into any creature from the deep ocean depths, which would it be, and why?
Carol Taylor: Most little girls want to be a mermaid but now I’ve grown up I haven’t given a thought to what sea animal I would like to be…but as you have asked Willow…as I like people and am sociable as most bloggers are so I think a “Dolphin” because they follow boats and are very friendly but also as a dolphin I love to eat squid, fish, cuttlefish and crustaceans although I have to be careful that sharks or other predators don’t eat me however we keep the balance in the ocean and without us the natural balance and the health of the ocean would be negatively affected plus dolphins are very graceful and almost as pretty as a mermaid…
Check out Carol’s other tips to reduce food waste and how to make your kitchen more green: https://carolcooks2.com/.
Carol also sent a video link about the floating markets in Thailand: