The last few months of 2021 introduced a new project at the La Salle Kitchen Garden in Croxteth. Our partners at Faiths4Change who run these Nature4Health sessions saw a need to help educate the garden’s participants further on how to use the fresh produce collected. This is known as the ‘Plot to Plate’ group.
This new group of 7 participants worked together on both managing the garden and learning new skills together. With a growing confidence in gardening and strong rewards of fresh fruit and veg, there was often lots of good produce harvested. At La Salle, there is a huge variety of produce despite the size of the garden and team who work on it weekly. This includes beans, onions, brassicas and even melons!
The aim of the ‘Plot to Plate’ group was to enable more participants to feel confident in cooking with this fresh food. So far, the group have created and shared 11 plant-based meals, all made from the produce they have harvested together. This has encouraged the group to learn new skills such as cooking, weeding, overwintering crops and making compost. ‘Plot to Plate’ has also encouraged the group to be more adventurous with food by inventing their own combinations, and feel more connected with where their food comes from.
As well as adopting a taste for healthy, plant-based recipes, the group have also benefited socially. One participant hoped for a local activity to fill their free-time, whereas another, who had recently moved to Liverpool, aimed to meet new people and find a near-by hobby.
Attending to La Salle Kitchen Garden has enabled a diverse mix of individuals to become friends. This has particularly benefitted two individuals who have bonded over the unfortunate event of losing a loved one recently. They now enjoy meeting outside of the group too.
The future is bright for this small yet brilliant group, with one member adopting a ‘Plot to Plate’ plant-based recipe book using photos taken from each session.
If you would like to meet new people, adopt a healthier lifestyle or simply fill your time, sessions at La Salle take place each Wednesday over the course of 12-weeks between the hours of 12:30 – 3 pm. The next course is due to begin in February, 2022 although a current course is presently ongoing.
We’re always looking for new participants so why not join for the new year! Sessions are completely free and require no experience in either cooking or gardening! Please contact Elizabeth via email at Elizabeth.Mason@merseyforest.org.uk or Rhianna at Rhianna.Weston@merseyforest.org.uk for more information or if interested.