Tag Archives: soup

Souperstar: Joanne Gray

Joanne has been involved with Brighton Soup since December 2016 (almost two years!) and regularly cooks up a delicious soup for our events. Ahead of our next Soup at  Community Base on the 30th November (tickets here!), we caught up with Joe to find out all about her cooking…

What are your favourite things to cook? 

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I love love love Indian food, so I tend to cook a lot of different Indian curries and street food – my husband recently bought me the most amazing cookbook called Fresh India by Meera Sodha. Its all vegetarian recipes that are super easy to make and all of them so far are delicious.  I basically like cooking food that I really enjoy eating, so that does usually involve recipes with a bit of a kick as I am a bit of a spice and chilli fan!  My most memorable and favourite soup for a Brighton Soup event was Joe’s Split Chickpea, Spinach & Masala Soup – as you’d expect, it was nice and spicy and seemed to go down well amongst those who tried it!

How did you first get interested in cooking? 

I’ve been cooking since I was young. My parents always encouraged my sisters and I to help make dinners, and my passion for food and cooking has continued throughout my life.  I actually remember ‘outsourcing’ my mincemeat pie making skills at Christmas when I was about 10…a friend of my mums didn’t have the time to make them herself so I baked them for her and she paid me nicely (probably only about £2 but it felt a lot back then!)

What has been your most complicated/ interesting cooking to date? 

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In terms of interesting dishes, I’d say making our own halloumi cheese from scratch and then cooking with it has to be up there.  Homemade halloumi is delicious, really light and airy and full of flavour – 100 x better than the shop bought stuff!  We made all sorts of recipes with it, including coating in breadcrumbs and having it with portobello mushrooms and spinach in a toasted brioche bun, with some sriracha mayo for a bit of a kick!  My ethos with cooking is that it doesn’t need to be overly complicated, using good fresh ingredients and trying out new recipes with them is what its all about for me!

How did you first get involved with Brighton Soup?

My sister lives in Folkestone and had been involved with Folkestone Soup, so when I happened to see an advert one day for Brighton Soup I decided to go along and find out what it was all about.  I absolutely loved the event, I think it is wonderful on so many levels, from encouraging the community to get together, to find out about the issues and opportunities in our community to of course helping so good causes with some financial support to help their sustainability.  So I decided to become a regular Soup go-er!  I think it was on my 2nd Soup event that I got chatting to one of the organisers and somehow managed to sign myself up to making soup!!  The rest is history, I now go regularly to Brighton Soup with my husband, daughter and parents – who all love it!  My Dad has now also become a regular bread maker!

Where are you from? Are there any delicacies/ regional dishes we should try?
I am originally from Scotland but grew up in the South of England. My Scottish roots still influence my soup making. My Gran made the best soup ever with barley, lentils and split peas being her favourite basis for her different soups – so I often adapt versions of my Gran’s old recipes.  My Gran also used to make a meal called ‘Beef Olives’ which is thinly cut steak filled with either sausages or haggis and slow cooked in a onion gravy. Its comfort food at it’s absolute best, served with mash and greens! My daughter loves it too, so it’s one that we’ll make on a winter’s Sunday!

Sounds delicious!

Joe runs her own business consultancy called The Progress Lab  which specialises in organisational change, people development, sales and marketing. She is also a Pilates instructor and regularly hosts Women’s Well-Being events in Hove with a Nutritionist friend. She also runs a Lifelines Pilates class for those who are 50+ in Portslade.

If you fancy tasting one of Joe’s delicious soup recipes, don’t forget to book your tickets for the next soup!

Team Soup

 

 

 

Autumn Soup @ All Saints

Hi all,

Well we finally pulled our finger out and sorted out another soup. Yay!

It will be on Friday 28th September at All Saints Parish Hall in Hove. A late September, Autumn soup. Though we’re hoping the glorious warm weather will hang around a little longer so we can have the garden doors open.

As usual, you can get tickets here and submit your own project here.

And if you know of any musician types that would be up for playing on the night, then do let us know :).

See you soon.

Team Soup
Creating. Community. Engagement.

Souperstar: Martin Pritchard of Chu Chu Burmese Kitchen

Just before our last Soup Event (@ St George’s Hangleton) we caught up with one of our talented chefs, Martin Pritchard, who once again provided deliciou soup from from his Chu Chu Burmese Kitchen.

Martin & Tara Pritchard first joined us as volunteers in early 2017. They came to help set up at our May event, and we were all blown away by their boundless energy! Since then, they’ve volunteered at other events, and Martin has become one of our favourite soup chefs. Today, we’ve met him at ‘The Food Rocks’ market in Horsham, where he has a pitch every Thursday and Saturday selling delicious Burmese food.

Martin, how did you and Tara meet?

I was on my travels in Hawaii, queuing at a youth hostel. Tara was in the queue too! We got talking, and then met again on a flight to the Cook Islands. It went from there! We travelled together in New Zealand, and then lived together in Sydney, Australia for 9 months. When we returned to the UK, we moved in together and eventually married in 2009. We lived for a while in Chessington (near the theme park) but both loved the sea and came to Brighton whenever we could. We eventually moved here, but with our jobs don’t get to the beach as often as we’d like!

How did you get interested in cooking?

I grew up in Cheltenham, where I learnt to be a meat-and-veg man with a particular passion for peas soaked in vinegar! Later on, I studied Tourism and Management at Brighton Uni, living mainly on burgers and potatoes in all their guises. Tara, on the other hand, had grown up all over the world, eating spicy food in countries like Malaysia when she was just a kid. I guess I had a sort of ultimatum: “If you want this relationship to move forward, you need to expand your eating habits!”

So what happened?

We had an Italian housemate called Gino when we lived in Sydney, and he showed me some simple Italian dishes that inspired me. I found a love of cooking and have been making up for lost time ever since. Having been employed as a Payroll Manager for 17 years, I realised it was not what I had set out to do and it was driving me crazy. I hated being office bound and needed to do something different so I set up my own food business. Tara’s father is Anglo Burmese, and we decided that as Burmese food isn’t really known in the UK we would like to try and change that. Tara still has a job that takes her all over the world, but we’d both like to be able to dedicate ourselves to this line of work.

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The food is delicious! I just had a Dhal, which is quite like Indian or Nepali but also a bit different! And tea leaf salad?

Burmese Cuisine could be characterised by its use of fish (fish sauce and ngapi, which is shrimp paste) and drip shrimp, but it also takes influences from the countries it borders: Bangladesh, India, China, Thailand and Laos.

Many of the dishes we serve are traditional family recipes, the Oh No Khao Swe  (Chicken, Coconut & Egg Curry) is one of Tara’s Grandad’s recipes and one of the favourite things to eat in her family. “Chu Chu”, the name of the business, comes from the family name for the crispy egg noodles that are liberally sprinkled on the Oh No Khao Swe.

Laphet, or Tea Leaf Salad, is a ubiquitous Burmese dish. It is said that the Burmese are the only nationality to eat tea as well as drink it. The young tea leaves are picked and buried in sacks underground to ferment for anything between 6 months and 2 years. The tea leaves are then served over a salad of shredded veg (cabbage and lettuce), and served with numerous toppings such as crispy onion, crispy garlic, shrimp powder, mixed nuts and beans for the crunch that the Burmese love so much, along with the dressing of fish sauce, garlic oil and lime juice.

How did you get involved with Brighton Soup?

To be honest, Tara signed up for it initially. She was interested in what Brighton Soup do, and wanted to help out and try to make a difference to the community we live in, and I tagged along. I like what it stands for. There is a really nice environment at the events, and its great to be able to contribute to charities by doing what I do!

Martin can be found every Thursday and Saturday at the Food Rocks Market, Carfax, Horsham. If you love food, and particularly spicy food, then try this place out! Its just a bit different!

Chu Chu Burmese Kitchen

Team Soup

 

 

Lauren Alex Hooper – a musical wordsmith

Hello Soupers!

Well, here we are, in the run up to our next event – BrightonSoup @ St George’s – on the 6th July!

We’ve been scurrying around getting everything ready for you, and it’s with no small amount of excitement that we announce our performer for the evening; Lauren Alex Hooper!

Lauren will be gracing us with her musical stylings, a musical wordsmith who uses the power of words as a way through her own journey with mental health. She follows this philosophy by running a blog;

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Lauren has just put out her first single – ‘Invisible’ – a deeply personal song she co-wrote to raise some awareness about how difficult it can be to get support. All the proceeds from this are going to the charity Young Minds.

Visit her website at laurenalexhooper.com

And come and see her perform on the 6th July 2018!
(psssst…you’re not too late to get a ticket!)

Team Soup

Feeling hot, hot, hot!

Well what a fun evening that was! A beautiful venue – made even more glorious by the late evening spring sunshine (yeah, it was probably designed to be like that) – with great food, music and company – a real community spirit.

We know it was it a few weeks ago now (we’ve had a little break), but for those that didn’t make it we’d like to share…

One Church, Gloucester Road is a big venue – not without challenges for the team – but we ended up perfectly laid out within this beautiful old church in the heart of Brighton. And it turned out to be to be a very hot night.

We started with a few opening words from Eugenie Teasley, CEO of The Goodall Foundation and the energy behind Any Other Business Brighton, a group of people and organizations that spent the week showcasing the progressive social character of our diverse, vibrant, colourful city. It seemed fitting as this was the last event of the AOB week.

And then we were off with the pitches…

First Lucy McGrath & Sonia Mangan spoke about their Caritas Meal at All Saints Church, a monthly Sunday meal for people who are homeless, vulnerably housed or on the periphery of Society. Jenny Skelton pitched for the first ever Disability Pride Brighton event. Laura Harling was pitching for Found In Translation, a theatrical project that actively involves and engages those living with dementia. And Mary-Anne Weaver spoke of teaching young people to develop and practice manicuring skills as a way of tackling youth engagement and isolation.

You can get details on all the projects here.

Pitches over it was voting and feasting time – and it was a real foodie night. So many people brought food to share (very well received :)) and for the first time all 6 of our delicious soups were gluten free! And as always with vegetarian/vegan options. All courtesy of our Souper Chefs: Tom Chadd, Sam Redfern, Lizzie Batten, Joe Gray and newcomers Ros Morris and Team Soup member, Martin Pritchard. Thanks!

It was such a hot night someone asked if we had a gazpacho!

We also had a super delivery of 10 delicious Papa John’s Pizzas, a company that has given us much support over the last two years. If that wasn’t enough food focus we had more in the raffle with prizes from Nandos, GBKMOD Pizza, Big Beach Café, Pottery Café and more.

There was even real coffee instead of the usual instant stuff, a first for BrightonSoup. This was kindly provided by Ben and Donna from Pro Baristas. We weren’t sure how many people would ask for coffee in the evening, but it was so delicious and in so much demand that we just couldn’t make it fast enough!

We had a fantastic raffle with some great prizes, raising £243 for BrightonSoup, thank you so much everyone!. We’d like to ask the lucky winners if they could post photos of them using their prizes up on our facebook page so we could tag the contributors as a thank you. Although one of the prizes was some of Ayten Gasson’s Luxury Silk Lingerie so maybe in this instance just a thank you would do :).

When it’s time to count votes, it’s also music time – and for the first time at soup we had a band! The superb 4 piece Scandomando blew away the post-feasting slump with a blast of upbeat punk folk renditions of some classic songs. ‘Wanna Be LIke You’ got some soupers on their feet and dancing – don’t recall seeing that at soup before. One of our guests filmed them performing ‘Word Up’ and you can check that out here.

We had Rohan and Chloe from the Brighton & Hove Speak Out team return – winners of our Community Base event back in December – to give us an update on their film project. As a special treat we were able to debut the completed film to our guests – how cool was that! Another first for soupers, to see the end result of something they voted and put funds towards. Okay, there was a little technical delay, but a few jokes filled the time (bat joke anyone?). They had the film certificated as it will be screening at the Duke of York’s Cinema all next week before the showing of Churchill. If you can’t wait for that you can see the film here.

Finally it was time for the winner, and it was Jenny pitching that took the vote and the £505.70 in tickets and donations for Disability Pride Brighton. If you want to attend it’s being held next month on 9th July at New Road, Brighton..

As an AOB special we also had £500 of match funding graciously donated by Chris Llewellyn on behalf of The CriSeren Foundation. £200 of this went to Disability Pride bringing the winning funds to £705.70. The balance of £300 was split equally amongst the other projects. So everybody got a little funding this evening!

Finally, after many thanks you’s, goodbyes and lots of help clearing up, it was time to go out into the very warm night and head home – or onwards if you were so inclined. Or young :).

We hope you enjoyed yourselves, feasted deliciously, chatted to lovely people doing great things in your community, maybe got involved yourself, made new friends, tapped your feet to the delightful music and maybe even danced a little. Not a bad way to spend a hot Friday night in May.

Thanks for coming!

Team Soup

You can check out the full event details here and photos here.

Our next event is at BHASVIC on Friday 21st July and you can get tickets here.

 

St George and the Soup Dragons

Firstly, an apology for the delay of our post soup event write up! It’s been a crazy beginning of a year with a lot going on. However, for our first Soup of the year we think it went great! Once again we had a whole load of Soup newbies – Where are you coming from? Come again! Bring a friend! – along with lots of familiar faces. Tickets sold out in record time so it’s a good thing we had a bigger venue! Although we want to continue to grow, we want to make sure we hold on to the cosy, intimate vibe that you’ve all come to know and love.

As we get bigger we want to make sure we stay as IMG_9222.JPGenvironmentally friendly as possible so we keep thinking about steps we can take to become more sustainable. We’ve ditched the paper table cloths in favour of some reusable (and very swish) oil cloth coverings and Team Soup volunteer Arij has made some gorgeous recycled AND reusable flowers for the tables.

A huge thank you goes out to Colm and Anna from St George’s Catholic Church for letting us use the hall and for making extra tables appear seemingly out of nowhere.

If there’s one thing we know how to do here at BrightonSoup it’s tugging on your heart strings and this event was no exception. Everyone we spoke to said it was, once again, a tough vote.

The winner of the giant cheque made out for £467 (don’t worry, she gets real money too) was Ruth from Young Carers. This money will go towards providing respite breaks and aspirational activities making the lives of young people aged 5-24 that little bit more normal. A hugely deserving cause which you can find out more about HERE.

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All of the pitchers did an amazing job and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house once they’d finished with us. Jemma, Sophie, Nazan & Ruth you’re all doing amazing things for our community, keep it up! Don’t forget to check out the links to all of the projects in our previous post (event archive) so please to get in touch and get involved! That’s what it’s all about after all.

It was great to welcome back Simon from Stoneham Bakehouse. It was almost exactly a year ago that his pitch for a bike won and he came back to let us know about his new crowdfunding campaign for the bakery. They’re in the process of opening their very own bakery just by Stoneham Park and I for one will be getting my bread from nowhere else in future!

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It wouldn’t be BrightonSoup without the all important Soup would it? And what a selection we had! Six Sumptuous Super Soups! How many did you try?

We love music here at BrightonSoup HQ and an event wouldn’t be complete without us treating your ears as well as your tastebuds. Unfortunately Charlotte Howard couldn’t make it on the night (although we hope to have her come and play at a future event) but the amazing Rooz from Rooz and The Carnivalé stepped in last minute with an acoustic set for us. His bandmates actually played at Soup in December 2015 but he couldn’t make it to that one so at last he knows what they’ve been raving about for over a year.

Big thanks to everyone who bought a raffle ticket and img_9408congratulations to the 11 lucky winners!! As you know ALL (that’s every single penny) of the ticket money goes to the winning project but we do have running costs that BrightonSoup needs to cover somehow and this is how we do it. So thank you.

We haven’t got a date for the next event yet but keep an eye on the website and social media or sign up to our mailing list and we’ll let you know as soon as it’s decided. Don’t forget we’re always open for project submission so if you’ve got a great idea let us know!

It’s not easy putting on these events but we do love it and we’ll keep on doing it. If you’d like to get involved and volunteer with us (we’re really nice!) please get in touch via the contact form on the website – we’d love to hear from you!

Nikki

Team Soup

  • To see the full details on the event, who the contributors were and how you can get involved with any of the projects, check out the event archive
  • You can check out the event photos on our facebook album so get tagging

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An Event Like No Other – Nick Cross of The Reveals Festival

Nick Cross from St. John’s School and College pitched at BrightonSoup back in spring of last year. To think that was nearly a year ago already! So he’s back to tell us allll about it..

“It feels just like yesterday that my colleague Lucy, St. John’s learner Charlie, his support worker Martin and I attended Brighton Soup in April 2016.

It was an event like no other, from our projects conception to being up on stage pitching to win funding à la Dragon’s Den, this was an experience we treasured.

Our project was to seek funding for the Creative Arts festival1Tent at the St. John’s School and College Reveals Festival. This event described as a ‘mini Glastonbury’ was to celebrate St. John’s, a learning disability charities, 130th Anniversary. Part of the celebration was to create a learning disability-friendly music, art and film festival. Many of our learners, due to their complex disabilities, would never get the chance to attend or perform in a festival due to the many risks these mainstream events possess so we thought…let’s bring the festival to them!

After much planning, prepping and panicking we had the idea locked down and approached the wonderful people at BrightonSoup to see if our project met their helpfully broad application criteria.

Having been accepted we tentatively attended pitch night in The Crypt of Kemptown’s impressive St. George’s Church. We didn’t know what to expect and as we entered were hit by a delicious smell of soup and the smiles of friendly faces.

It was an extremely relaxed, yet professional affair with 3 other amazing projects also pitching for support. We thought, perhaps arrogantly, our project was the most likely to capture imaginations and although nervous made an earnest effort detailing The Reveals Festival when it was our turn.

“We received a wonderful response from the room and although we didn’t win gained volunteer support, food support and vital equipment that helped bring the festival together.”

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Despite not receiving the funding we don’t regret a moment of it. St. John’s made wonderful contacts who to this day support our work in a multitude of ways and the 2 day festival went off without a hitch.

 

We cannot thank Brighton Soup enough for their innovation, support and chance to improve the lives of our learners. We hope to attend more events in the future and know that this community inspiring idea will stand the test of time.

You can check out videos of our learners performing and just how much fun was had at the festival on our Facebook page.”

Nick Cross, St. John’s School and College

Work Hard, Play Harder

If you’ve been tuning in to Under The Influence with Mike Willis on 1Brighton FM (and if not, why not?) you might remember the very talented Charlotte Howard playing live on the show back in November.14433216_1416956838318544_1641062313348719759_n

Charlotte is a local singer/song writer known around town for her original tunes as well as some awesome Country/Pop/Rock covers.

So we are super lucky to have her perform at our next Soup in February! If you want a sneak peak at what a treat you’re in for, check her out on Facebook , and make sure you grab your tickets soon!

Team Soup

A Taste of Malvern Soup

At the end of last year I had the pleasure of attending another Soup in the UK, this time it was in Malvern, Worcester. It was their 2nd event, held at Malvern Town Football Club, and with four fantastic projects pitching it was an inspiring evening with a really difficult choice to be made.

After being greeted on the door by some lovely volunteers with matching Malvern Soup tee’s (can’t deny being jealous of those!), I then met Chris the founder, and his wife. We chatted and swapped notes before getting settled in for an afternoon of Soup!

“It’s nice when new people get captured by the magic of soup!”

Chris was inspired to start up Malvern Soup when he went along to Worcester Soup. He loved hearing about the projects that were pitched, but also loved the feel of the event. It created a space where people who cared could come together to learn, discuss and generate new ideas. So, he reckoned there would be enough people in Malvern with a passion for community to make a MalvernSoup viable.

It took a few months to get the ball rolling however. He had an initial meeting where Bruce from Worcester Soup came to talk and offer advice. They’ve had good support from agencies – council, housing association, children’s centre, police – which has continued. What he didn’t have were other community volunteers to make it a reality. But after some chatting to people at a market and an overheard conversation, their small group came together.

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Chris Reed (left), and project pitchers

It’s always really exciting going to another Soup. Seeing how another group have established themselves, organised their evening. Noticing all the little things that differ or that you do the same. I was in familiar surroundings although I’d never been there! I went to another Soup earlier in the year (Ely) and although each one seems to have the same format, the same intent, they all have their individuality.

One thing that came across is that they love to involve people of all ages and try to be very inclusive, they’ve been supported by the local sports provider and children’s centre who have brought kit along to keep the little ones entertained whilst the older lot network. Ensuring fun and benefit for everyone there.

It was a tough choice; a community garden, an association reaching out to isolated people, a timebank and a self-advocacy group for people with learning disabilities. Their pitches were engaging and emotive. There were duo’s, interviews, props used, and after each presentation I heard I wanted vote for them. Which obviously made it difficult when crunch time came along.

The winners Speak Easy N.O.W who support people with learning disabilities, took home an amazing £350, which was all of the door money and matched funding from Big Pickersleigh Project (for the 2nd time)!

“They’ve all enjoyed pitching and said they’ve gained from it, whether through making connections or building their confidence. And that’s what it’s all about.”

Everyone at Malvern Soup are pretty optimistic that they can go on to even bigger and better things, and I’m sure soon they’ll be offering advice and support to newer soups, just as they’ve received from Worcester and us!

If you’re going to another part of the country, keep on the look out for other Soup events going on, its always great to see what else is going on, and support it. Community isn’t just local.

It was a fab Soup Chris, thank you, keep it up!

Stephanie, Team Soup

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