Eco group

WORLD FOOD DAY – FRIDAY 16 OCTOBER 2020

The Goal for World Food day: Building a safer environment and Zero Hunger Generation

From the book – The Quest for God – a personal Pilgrimage by Paul Johnson 1996 from this extract we get a glimpse of God’s view of the animal kingdom.

“That God created all forms of animal life, of set purpose, and that he loves them accordingly – as he loves all his creation – is certain. He has their interests at heart and perceives them better than anyone else. All that remains is for us to interpret his teachings. Therein however lies the difficulty.

Animal lovers and the Judeo-Christian tradition have not had an uneasy relationship. The Old Testament is not exactly an animal lover’s Bible. Therein wild animals are treated as wild enemies of the human race. Abraham’s abortive sacrifice of his son Isaac, which is held up to illustrate the mercy and humanitarianism in God, actually ends in a young ram getting its throat cut. It is a curious fact that, in the whole length of the Old Testament, there is only one reference of an animal being kept as a pet. The New Testament is no different. Jesus Christ has no particular concern for animals recorded.

All the same, the teachings of the religious traditions on how we should treat animals are perfectly reasonable. However, I feel there is a great change coming in our relationship with the animal world. Great Saints, like St Francis, St Cuthbert and St Philip Neri, who were particularly close to animals, and especially sensitive to how they manifested God’s will and love, saw this change coming and were ahead of their times. We are indeed beginning to understand how animals think, and why they do things, and that understanding makes us appreciate them far more and treat them more intelligently. The more we understand about life in general, the more we value the lives of all creatures.

God allowed us to live off the beasts of the fields and the forest because there was no other way then, for mankind to survive and prosper. But our technology is now such that we can produce endless varieties of nourishing and delicious foods without resorting to animal flesh”.

On a more personal level, World Food Day activities provide education on ways that we can change simple daily habits and decisions to make a difference in our world. This information should help us to understand the important global issues such as increasing infections, poverty, conflict and climate change that impact the world’s food supply and distribution.

A Sunday Times article on 2 August warned that the meat industry has been flagged as source of “the next COVID”!! A report by the UN Environmental Programme advised “the science is clear that if we keep exploiting wildlife and destroying our ecosystems, then we can expect to see a steady stream of these diseases jumping from animals to humans in the years ahead”

Research has indicated “that many pathogens of concern to human health are transferred to us from domesticated animals farmed for human consumption” Diseases such as diphtheria, measles, mumps, the rotavirus and smallpox “all have their origins in domesticated animals. And about 75% of all emerging infectious diseases in humans come from animals”

Make a difference this October by informing others about the benefits of vegetarianism. You will be helping to create a better world because vegetarian diets have proven health benefits such as the reduction in major killers such as heart disease, stroke and cancer while cutting exposure to meat-borne pathogens.  It also helps to prevent the inhumane slaughter of animals and helps to preserve the Earth.

What to do on Friday 16 October 2020

We would like to suggest that you and your family agree to go vegetarian on Friday 16 October, and eat no meat products for the whole day!  
Cooking meat-free alternatives can be challenging for us.  As a start we enclose a recipe for a Vegetarian Curry.  Speak to your family and friends and share other meat free recipes.

We hope that this will make a personal and spiritual impact as you reflect seriously on the expensive and risky habit of eating meat every day.  It could also at least result in you deciding to reduce your meat consumption! A move in the right direction. A vegetarian diet is not a silver bullet to prevent the next pandemic, but a balanced approach is important.

Zero Hunger Generation:

Also consider how we could provide a viable answer to feeding the world’s hungry through more efficient use of grains and other crops, which cost less than meat and are less risky…

Remember this will also save animals from suffering in factory-farm conditions.

-o0o-

Bulk Vegetable Curry
This is a great bulk vegetarian dish.  Divide the full quantity into three parts – serve one with rice and use the others for Vegetable Sumoosas and Vegetable Bobotie
Preparation20 mins
Cooking40 mins

Ingredients

  • Oil for shallow-frying
  • 8 onions
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 30ml (2T) grated fresh ginger
  • 8 cinnamon stocks
  • 5 cardamom pods
  • 20ml (4t) ground cumin
  • 15ml (1T) garam masala
  • 15ml (1T) mild roasted curry
  • 10ml (2t) turmeric
  • 10ml (2t) ground fennel
  • 15ml (1T) ground coriander    
  • 8 ripe tomatoes, skinned and chopped
  • 4 cans (410g each) chickpeas
  • 1,2kg butternut and sweet potato cubes
  • Salt
  • 400g green beans, cut into thirds
  • 230g button mushrooms (optional)
  • 200g spinach, chopped
  • 250ml (1c) water
  • 80g chopped fresh coriander

Method

  1. Heat oil in a pot and fry the onions until soft.  Add the garlic, ginger, whole and ground spices and fry for about 2 minutes or until fragrant
  2. Add the tomatoes and chickpeas with their liquid and simmer for 5 minutes
  3. Add the butternut and sweet potato cubes, season with salt and simmer until almost soft.
  4. Add the green beans, mushrooms (if using) and spinach.  Season with salt and simmer until soft but not mushy.  Add water as needed to prevent catching. 

Sir in the chopped coriander.

To Serve:Serve with basmati rice, poppadums and sambals.
To Freeze:Allow to cool completely then spoon into freezer containers and freeze.
To Defrost:Empty out of container and thoroughly reheat on stove or in a microwave Alternatively:  make samosas or vegetable bobotie.

Discussion

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