Melissa Hemsley on Making Changes and Her New Book
How many cookbooks do you own? Five? 10? More? This was what Melissa Hemsley asked herself upon writing her new book.
“I’ve called it Eat Green: Delicious Flexitarian Recipes For Planet-friendly Eating – what an absurd choice of words,” says Melissa. “What does that mean? On average, most people in UK households have 20 cookbooks and might only choose one or two recipes from each book. What a waste of paper!
“There’s too much consumption and I didn’t want to write a cookbook that wasn’t useful. With this one, I said it has to be helpful or I don’t want to bother.”
Melissa, 34, asked people to provide inspiration. “I based it on my own research and previous conversations I’d had: what’s in your fridge? What ends up in our compost bin? What ends up in your bin? On a Friday night, when you look in the fridge what do you see looking back?
“I thought: I’ve got 13 groups of fruit and vegetables that are the most bought and thrown-away food. I’ll do a seasons chart and recipes based on celeriac and boring swedes. No one needs another avocado toast recipe or another blueberry banana protein powder smoothie.
“So I’ve tried to come up with a cookbook that will make people go, ‘What does flexitarian mean? What does planet-friendly mean? Sustainability is this big word that most of us want to get behind. We can waste less.”
The process of creating Eat Green has helped Melissa be efficient in other ways. “Whether it’s food waste, or wasting our time or energy, I want to be more mindful and conscious. Being planet-friendly needs us to do what we can.”
Eat Green: Delicious Flexitarian Recipes For Planet-friendly Eating by Melissa Hemsley is out now (Ebury Press, £22). Melissa is also a guest on the BALANCE podcast