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9 things we’ve learnt about farming from Jeremy Clarkson



WHEN THE coronavirus pandemic brought the world to a standstill in spring 2020, it also brought press vehicle deliveries to a standstill. While this was obviously not one of the top-tier tragedies caused by the virus, it caused a slight inconvenience to Jeremy Clarkson and The Sunday Times for the first time since he nearly wrote his thoughts on cars for the paper thirty years ago, the most famous auto writer of the Landes doesn’t write about cars.

Instead, he decided to write about his farm. Clarkson has owned his farm, which he calls Diddly Squat, since 2008 and most of the time since then has paid someone with a great deal of farming knowledge to do the farming chores for him. However, when that person retired a few years ago, Clarkson decided to take the reins in his own hands and became a full-time farmer – while occasionally traveling to Madagascar for the Grand Tour or Manchester to fund Who Wants to Be a Millionaire his never did ending stream of costly agricultural mistakes.

Clarkson’s Farm, a show telling one of Clarkson’s work on the farm premiered on Amazon Prime Video today. To mark the occasion, we wanted to look at nine things we have already learned about farming from Jeremy Clarkson.

  • Check out Clarkson’s Farm on Amazon Prime here

1. Sheep do not respect authority

Clarkson has detailed his relationships with many animals, but none is more tense than his rivalry with sheep. The trailer for Farmer Clarkson illustrates this with various scenes showing sheep antics, including jumping over stone fences to escape the 61-year-old and kicking him in the decker.

“They take absurd risks,” writes Clarkson, “and feign disinterest in everything while being intentionally obstructive, stubborn, rude and prone to eye-rolling acts of vandalism.” For him they are nothing more than “woolly teenagers”.

Read about Clarkson’s rivalry with sheep

2. Chainsaws can easily be placed in trees

As you can imagine, one of the things that moved Clarkson to farming was the ability to use absurdly powerful machines. So if you do light forest management for a weekend (a job he says you can’t “try” any more than you can “try” yourself with maintaining subsea oil rigs), the natural tool of choice had to be a chainsaw.

However, after much sweating, swearing, and a near-death experience, Clarkson decided it would be better to pay someone with a bigger machine to do the heavy lifting. The only use for chainsaws is “chopping off the arms of a drug dealer”.

Read about Jeremy Clarkson’s experience with chainsaws

3. Water divination works

The summer of 2020 was extremely dry, among other things. This means trouble for farmers, who obviously depend on rain for their crops to thrive. So, in a desperate attempt to irrigate his broad beans, Clarkson tried to locate the location of a number of underground water pipes that an owner of his land had installed in the 19th century.

On the advice of a neighbor (called “Charlie Who May Be Crazy”), he set out to find the Victorian pipes on a pair of metal coat hangers. Water divination, also known as the pendulum, is sometimes used on water-dried farms in California and is viewed by many as a pseudoscience.

“In my mind, divination in water is like ley lines and horoscopes,” wrote Clarkson. “This is nonsense. Two hangers don’t respond to the presence of water. Except for one thing. They do.”

Read more about Clarkson’s experiments with the commuting

4. Agriculture is the most dangerous job … in the world

Agriculture, fishing and farming accounted for 20% of all workplace deaths in 2020, and farmers are 18 times more likely to be fatally injured than the average worker, according to the Health and Safety Executive.

Clarkson can see this, especially when trying to attach tools to the back of his tractor by attaching sharp tools to an invariably greasy surface while standing on mud in the dark. “Imagine covering yourself in baby oil and then playing twister in a Burmese sawmill. Then you are on the right side, ”he said.

Read about Clarkson’s Brushing With Death

Clarkson's farming show trailer debuts ahead of Sunday Times interview

5. Government bureaucracy is the bane of farmers

Clarkson has written repeatedly about how pernicious governments can be for farmers. Meddling has come in many ways: the author has covered everyone from the community workers who grapple with the color of the roof of his farm shop, to the Ministry of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs that uses satellites to track farmers and them at that forces adhere to a number of obscure rules.

And Brexit only exacerbated that problem: while trying to diversify his crops to include durum wheat, which is used to make pasta and is more commonly grown in France, Clarkson found his shipment stuck on the canal, entangled in red tape. “And there was no point in asking the French for clarification,” he wrote, “because all you get is the Gallic shrug, a widely accepted symbol of utter disinterest. With a hint of ‘Well, you shouldn’t have left the EU if you had.’ “

Read more about Clarkson’s thoughts on Brexit bureaucraticism

6. Agriculture is incredibly important to the environment

Well, we already knew that, but Clarkson is excellent at making the point. One of the effects of his transition to farming is that he has become a vocal advocate of rural conservation and consumption of seasonal produce rather than transporting exotic and polluting items – in a recent interview, he claimed that eating two avocados is so is as bad as driving a VW Polo for a year.

“If you want to do something for the planet, eat what’s in season and eat what’s grown next door,” he wrote. “This is how you solve it, not by opening up the country to hikers and then buying groceries from abroad.”

This is so important to him that he has even put some of his favorite recipes on paper, almost all of which are made from home-grown ingredients.

Read more about Clarkson’s recipes

7. You can still buy Lamborghini tractors

Any petrolhead worth their money will know that before Lamborghini made bedroom wall poster V12 supercars, it was a manufacturer of the rather humble tractor. However, what most people may not know (at we certainly don’t) is that it is still possible to buy one.

Lamborghini’s tractor manufacturing was sold in 1973, although tractors are still made with the famous name. They’re made in Germany, “but they still look Lambo-crazy,” says Clarkson. “If an Aventador made love to a spaceship, you’d end up doing it.”

Read more about the Clarkson Lamborghini tractor

8. Vauxhalls scare Clarkson now

Clarkson was never the biggest fan of Vauxhalls. When asked to review the Vauxhall Vectra in 2002, he decided instead to write about the Reed Warbler, a little British bird that he thought was far more interesting than the car. And since then he has referred to Vauxhall’s offerings as “car wallpaper paste”.

However, Clarkson’s Griffin phobia of becoming a farmer has compounded Vauxhalls as all of the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs officials show up at Diddly Squat farm to keep him from doing anything.

In a 2020 review of the Vauxhall Corsa, he wrote, “Whenever I see an insignia coming into the yard, I plunge into a vat of manure to escape because there is always someone with a clipboard and an expense report and an encyclopedic Knowing about the obscure rule I just turned. I don’t remember what my teachers drove, but I bet all the annoying people who enforced the top button fixing rule had Vivas. “

Read what Clarkson had to say about the Vauxhall Corsa

9. Pigs are the Steve McQueens of agriculture

Sheep aren’t the only bullies on Diddly Squat Farm. Clarkson decided he’d like to eat homemade bacon sandwiches, pork cheeks, and his own signature pork and pepper pasta, bought two pigs (named Stephen and Stephen for their intelligence, after Fry and Hawking), and started raising them.

However, his plans to become a farm-to-table operation were hampered by the fact that his pigs are too personable. Not only are they smart, they’re cute and have the courage to keep trying to escape their pen. As Clarkson wrote: “Yesterday morning I noticed that they had turned their house into a vaulting horse, and that afternoon I received a call saying that one of them was riding a motorcycle along the fence line between Germany and Switzerland.”

Stephen and Stephen’s possession actually stopped Clarkson from eating pork.

Read more about Clarkson’s pigs

  • Check out Clarkson’s Farm on Amazon Prime here

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Recipes with Whole Wheat Pasta

The hunt for New Zealand’s best meal kit delivery service



Jihee Junn analyzes the numbers from a recent study comparing the greatest players in the Meal Pack game.

As a single parent, childless person who doesn’t mind eating five bowls of oatmeal a day, I can’t say I’ve ever fully embraced the movement of meal sets. But I know that for many families, having the same meals cooked or taken away every week is not a viable option. For example, my eternally exhausted sister and her busy husband have three young children who don’t eat anything all the time, except chocolate, french fries, and pizza. Eating out – even at McDonald’s – somehow always costs a small fortune.

It is no coincidence that parceled meals have found a lucrative niche in families like hers. When the concept first hit the market in Sweden in the late 2000s, they were exactly with the modern family in mind – one where both parents worked full-time. Created to combine our desire for fresh, healthy home-cooked meals with our increasingly busy, comfortable lives, it wasn’t long before the concept gained momentum and spread across the continent to central Europe and the United States by 2012 .

Around the same time that food parcels were on the rise in the USA, the idea with the introduction of My Food Bag 2013, which was co-founded by star chef Nadia Lim, had also found its way to Aotearoa. A few years later came the slightly more gourmet Woop service (which stands for “world on our plate” in case you’re wondering), followed by the Bargain Box, a cheaper option launched by the My Food Bag team. Then, in 2018, HelloFresh came on the market – the German meal kit juggernaut that managed to capture a large part of the local market in less than three years.

The Hello Fresh empire arrived in New Zealand in 2018. Photo: Hello Fresh

As the Covid-19 lockdowns accelerate the growth in meal set deliveries, My Food Bag, Woop, Bargain Box and HelloFresh have had a lot to celebrate over the past two years. More people than ever are trying these “essential services” instead of the supermarket chaos, and while they all share the same business model, there are important differences, a recent study by consumer-centric research website MoneyHub points out.

Over the course of six months, the team subscribed to the four largest and most popular meal set delivery services in New Zealand and consumed over 100 different meals to directly compare almost every detail you could ask for, including cost, cooking time, and packaging waste ( Unfortunately, taste was deliberately left out because it was perceived as “too subjective”). We have summarized their key insights into which company did well in which areas. To read full details and see photos of each meal, go to MoneyHub website.

Prices and plans

Aside from the Bargain Box, which only offers two types of plans (classic and vegetarian), the remaining three offer meals tailored to a gluten-free or health-conscious diet, as well as a plant-based plan from My Food Bag that is completely vegan in ingredients . All three also have options that instead let you choose from a selection of recipes from different plans, with HelloFresh having the largest selection of recipes (20+) that you can combine and customize each week.

However, if you only want to get the most bang for your buck, the Bargain Box is your best bet, especially if you want to feed a large family or have multiple servings on hand. Designed to accommodate the largest number of people from all four services, a regular five meal plan can only cost $ 6.30 per plate for six people ($ 190 per week), $ 7.30 per plate for four people (140 USD per week). and $ 11.50 per plate for two ($ 115).

Remember: meal sets are designed so that the bigger your order (more servings, more meals), the cheaper it will be per plate.

Bargain box from a bird’s eye view (Photo: MoneyHub)

HelloFresh (including the $ 10 delivery fee) ranks second in the price per platter. But with more than 20 recipes to choose from compared to Bargain Box’s eight recipes, HelloFresh has a far wider choice for just a few more dollars, especially if you have dietary requirements. However, it’s worth noting that there is an additional $ 5 delivery fee in the South Island.

Packaging and ingredients

Woop may be the most expensive of the four, but the comparison found that not only does it contain the highest quality local ingredients, but it also produces the least amount of waste. Its pre-made sauces and precisely portioned ingredients were found to leave the least amount of food waste and unused ingredients, while its recipes also required the fewest and simplest “pantry items” (ingredients not included).

Most of woops The packaging is made from materials that are suitable for roadside recycling, but Woop also gives you the option to return all of your packaging directly to the company (provided it is completely clean, dry, and food-free) that it at yours next order and properly recycled. This includes things like soft plastics as well as gel cold packs that are disinfected, frozen and reused for other woop deliveries.

A typical woop box contains less waste than its competitors. Photo: MoneyHub

Cooking and preparation

With regard to the actual preparation of the meals, the comparison showed that the preparation and cooking (carried out by one person) took significantly longer than all estimates of all four providers. Based on the recipes used during the comparison, the actual time taken to prepare meals averaged between 20 and 30 minutes longer than the average estimated times. Of course, this all depends on the speed and skills of whoever does the job, but if you’re your average home cook, it’s safe to say that it will likely take a little longer than any of these companies think.

However, among the four companies, the recipes were the fastest to prepare thanks to Woop’s pre-made sauces and sometimes pre-cooked vegetables, with an estimated time averaging 23 minutes, or around 40 minutes in reality. My Food Bag and HelloFresh (excluding the “fresh and quick” recipes that only take 15 minutes) were the second and third fastest with an estimated average time of 37 and 40 minutes, in reality around 55 and 60 minutes. The Bargain Box meals lasted the longest, with the 35-minute meals running closer to 65.

Two bargain box meals prepared during the study that, on average, lasted much longer than promised (Photo: MoneyHub)

In the meantime, if you’re the cook who needs all the help you can get, comparing HelloFresh’s recipe cards proved to be the best of the group. Her detailed instructions included pictures of all the ingredients and each step of the cooking process, as well as a list of the utensils you need and suggestions as to whether you should prepare a particular dish earlier than another. The ingredients for each dish are also packaged in individually color-coded paper bags, so you can easily sort what you need each time you cook.

Which one is right for me?

No company does the best at everything, and all have their individual weaknesses. For example, Woop only delivers to certain cities, HelloFresh charges extra for the South Island, Bargain Box has little for those with dietary requirements, while My Food Bag often requires more unusual supplies such as whole grain mustard, rice vinegar and corn starch. It’s up to you to decide what is important and what is not, but here is which service, in MoneyHub’s opinion, is best.


“Best for people in large cities (because of their delivery areas) and plans for one person. Their estimated prep times are consistently shorter than those of the other companies, and while we didn’t necessarily finish the meals in the estimated time, they were faster than the other food companies we tried. All of their plans use high quality ingredients, but we especially liked their ‘Foodie’ plan as it is the only gourmet option on the market that is available for one, two or four people. “

Hello Fresh

“Best for people without much cooking experience, because the recipe cards are very detailed and the app helps too. [It also has the] largest selection of recipes to choose from and you get access to the HelloFresh cookbook with thousands of recipes. They offer a particularly good price-performance ratio for low-calorie and vegetarian recipes. “

My grocery bag

“Best for weight loss plans and herbal recipes, but there are many plans. Wide availability across New Zealand (according to their website, they serve 86% of New Zealanders). We have found that they use more adventurous spices than HelloFresh and Bargain Box, but also require more supplies for their preparation. “

Bargain box

“Best for the budget-conscious, families with more than four members or picky eaters, as the recipes are usually kiwi classics.”

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10 Kale Pasta Dishes, from Spaghetti to Lasagne!



Kale is a plant in the cabbage family, which also includes favorites like cabbage, broccoli, kohlrabi, arugula, and Brussels sprouts. Kale was nicknamed King Kale for its excellent nutritional profile and health benefits. It’s also tasty and easy to incorporate into many meals.

Kale is rich in vitamins A, K, C, B6, manganese, calcium, copper, potassium, magnesium. It’s high in chlorophyll and contains 3 grams of protein per cup. In fact, a cup of raw kale contains more vitamin C, an important antioxidant, than an orange and is also one of the most well-known sources of vitamin K. Plus, kale is a good source of fiber and is low in fat and calories. This makes kale one of the most nutritious foods out there.

There are obviously many ways to include kale in your meals, from side dishes to smoothies to desserts. Here we have a list of the best ways to incorporate kale into your favorite pasta dishes.

1. Garden picnic noodle salad with vegetables, herbs and orange-miso-tahini dressing

Garden picnic noodle salad with vegetables, herbs and orange-miso-tahini dressing

Source: Garden picnic noodle salad with vegetables, herbs and orange-miso-tahini dressing / One Green Planet

Kale plays an important role in this garden picnic noodle salad with vegetables, herbs, and orange miso tahini dressing from The Whole Foods Diet. Pasta is tossed along with a rainbow of vegetables and topped with a creamy orange-miso-tahini dressing that adds a lemony touch. Here, kale is eaten raw. This is a quick toss-up meal and works wonderfully as leftovers.

2. Creamy kale and zucchini pasta

Creamy kale and zucchini pasta

Source: Creamy kale and zucchini pasta/ A green planet

This is a great recipe for anyone looking for an alternative to wheat noodles. It is also ideal for this time of year when zucchini are in season. In this recipe for Creamy kale and zucchini pasta from Rouxbe, the kale is cooked with caramelized onions and stirred into the zucchini noodles. A creamy tahini sauce brings it all together.

3. A pot of creamy Tuscan kale pasta

Source: One Pot Creamy Tuscan Kale Pasta / One Green Planet

You can put this meal together in under 30 minutes. The creamy sauce of this One Pot Creamy Tuscan Kale Pasta by Shanika Graham-White is made from cashew nuts, which gives you a velvety texture and a protein boost. The kale is sautéed with garlic and tomatoes for a rich hearty taste.

4. Pasta Primavera

Pasta with vegetables

Source: Pasta Primavera / One Green Planet

This is a really simple dish that requires you to add some veggies and, of course, some kale to a jar of tomato sauce. This could be one you had in your pantry waiting for the perfect recipe. This Pasta Primavera recipe from Wholesome LLC is a perfect weekday meal.

5. Vegetable protein pasta salad bowl

Pasta salad with vegetable protein

Source: Plant Protein Pasta Salad Bowl / One Green Planet

This vegetable protein pasta salad bowl from Nikki and Zuzana call for red lentil noodles that add protein power, but you can use any pasta of your choice. You’re still getting plenty of protein from the black lentils and hemp heart-based dressing. Here kale is accompanied by its green friends spinach, rocket and many fresh herbs.

6. Kale Walnut Pesto Noodles

Vegan kale walnut pesto pasta

Source: Kale-Walnut-Pesto-Pasta / One Green Planet

This Mitra Shirmohammadi Kale Walnut Pesto Noodle Recipe couldn’t be easier. Aside from making a pot of pasta, all you need to do is put all of the ingredients in a blender to make a batch of this kale pesto. Kale is added to the pesto along with the traditional basil flavor. Walnuts are used in place of pine nuts and a healthy dose of nutritional yeast gives it that “cheesy” note.

7. Spaghetti a la Caesar

Spaghetti a la Caesar

Source: Spaghetti a la Caesar / One Green Planet

This recipe for Spaghetti a la Caesar by Kim Sujovolsky is also easy to make. Kale is sautéed with garlic and mixed with the spaghetti. Then the dish is served with a serving of almond parmesan, lemon and chilli flakes.

8. Sweet potato noodles with garlic and cashew cream

Vegan sweet potato noodles with garlic cashew cream

Source: Sweet Potato Noodles with Garlic Cashew Cream / One Green Planet

Here’s another great gluten-free pasta option. This Garlic Cashew Cream Sweet Potato Noodle Recipe by Christine Zulkosky takes a creamy cashew sauce and serves it with sweet potato noodles, a generous helping of kale, and chunky mushrooms to give it a bite.

9. Soothing kale pesto pasta casserole

Kale pesto pasta casserole [Vegan, Gluten-Free]

Source: Soothing Kale Pesto Pasta Casserole / One Green Planet

This soothing kale pesto pasta casserole from Florian Nouh is full of texture and flavor. The crust is made from gluten-free breadcrumbs and the noodles are tossed in a kale-based pesto. The whole dish is then baked for about 15-20 minutes. It’s a nice vegan version of a classic comfort food.

10. Kale lasagna

Vegan gluten-free kale lasagna with bechamel sauce

Source: Kale Lasagne / One Green Planet

We can hardly make a list of pasta favorites and leave out the lovely lasagna. This kale lasagna from Peffe Stahl is vegan and gluten-free. This is a really simple recipe that requires a soy or oat milk based bechamel sauce layered between sheets of vegan lasagna. The kale is then sautéed with onions before joining the bechamel.

Make your pasta dishes particularly tasty and nutritious with a generous helping of kale.

Learn How To Make Plant-Based Meals At Home!

Vegan creamy ginger-coconut-kale-zucchini-spaghetti [Gluten-Free]

It is known to help reduce meat consumption and eat more plant-based foods chronic inflammation, Heart health, mental wellbeing, Fitness goals, Nutritional needs, Allergies, good health, and more! Milk consumption has also been linked to many health problems, including acne, hormonal imbalance, cancer, Prostate cancer and has many Side effects.

For those of you interested in eating more plant-based foods, we highly recommend downloading the Food Monster App – With over 15,000 delicious recipes, it is the largest herbal recipe source to reduce your ecological footprint, save animals and get healthy! And while you’re at it, we encourage you to find out about the environment and health benefits from a vegetable diet.

Here are some great resources to get you started:

For more daily published content on animals, earth, life, vegan food, health and recipes, subscribe to One Green Planet newsletter! Finally, public funding gives us a greater chance of continuing to provide you with quality content. Please note support us through donations!

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Recipes with Whole Wheat Pasta

Types of Chocolate, Explained:



You’ve seen these numbers on fancy candy bar packaging, but what do chocolate percentages mean and which one should you choose? We’ll break it down so you can make the best chocolate choice possible.

When it comes to chocolate, I used to be part of the high cocoa cult. My favorite was 70 percent, with an 82.5 percent shot every now and then. However, the more I learned about chocolate, the more I realized that the percentage had nothing to do with quality: I had greasy 85 percent bars and fantastic 40 percent bars.

That’s because the cocoa percentage is the percentage of the bar that comes straight from cocoa beans. Take my beloved 70 percent bar as an example: 70 percent of this bar is made from refined cocoa beans, and 30 percent is made from all the other ingredients like sugar, vanilla, sea salt, pop rocks, whatever.

Just because you’ve tried a 70 percent bar doesn’t mean you’ve tried them all. Everyone has a unique mouthfeel and taste. (A genius came up with the fancy sounding “mouthfeel” to describe how things feel in the mouth. In practical terms, this means whether the chocolate is grainy or smooth, melts quickly or slowly, etc.) One reason is that one chocolate bar contains significantly more cocoa butter than another. Both cocoa solids and cocoa butter are included in this 70 percent.

As I write in my book, “Bean-to-Bar Chocolate: America’s Craft Chocolate Revolution ”,“ A 70 percent bar could contain 50 percent cocoa mass and 20 percent cocoa butter; another could have 30 percent cocoa mass and 40 percent cocoa butter (that would make a very smooth, buttery bar!). To make it even more complicated, different types of beans naturally contain different amounts of cocoa butter. Some are leaner, others fatter. The natural “butteriness” of a bean changes the consistency of the resulting chocolate. “

Milk chocolate generally has a fairly low percentage, usually around 40 percent or less (Hershey’s is 11 percent). I’m in love with Zotter’s 40 percent bar diluted with “Bio Tiroler Bergmilch” and Frans smoked salt.

Dark chocolate has no legal definition in the United States (it comes under the umbrella term semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate). It’s usually at least 55 percent, but most dark chocolate lovers enjoy 70 percent or more. I’m obsessed with a new variety called dark milk chocolate, a high-proof milk chocolate that combines the best of both worlds: you get the intense flavors of dark chocolate with the creaminess of milk chocolate. My favorite right now? Chocolate Naive’s 62 percent dark milk with porcini mushrooms. (Yes, you read that right: mushrooms!)

Then there are some dark candy bars that stamp in at 100 percent. That said, they only contain ground and refined cocoa beans, and the trick for the chocolate makers is to bring out the natural flavors of these beans to make them not only edible but also enjoyable. The best – like those from Fruition and Pralus – are far from making chocolate. I urge you to try a 100 percent bar for Valentine’s Day: you might find your true love.

But don’t forget the white chocolate either.

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