MPs take on a kitchen challenge: cook a week’s worth of food for a family of five for under £50.
According to MPs who donned chef hats and put their culinary skills to the test, teaching people to cook is one of the best ways to combat poverty and obesity.
Last week, four MPs gathered at a Nottinghamshire primary school to demonstrate how a family of five could be fed for seven days for just £50.24.
Lee Anderson, an Ashfield Conservative MP, teamed up with a renowned chef and the staff of a local food bank to demonstrate the variety of meals that can be prepared on a shoestring budget.
In a ready, steady, cook-style challenge at Sutton Community Academy, he cooked enough food to provide an estimated 140 servings with Brendan Clarke-Smith (Bassetlaw), Marco Longhi (Dudley North), and Matt Vickers (Stockton South).
Chilli con carne, chicken curry, spaghetti bolognese, and sweet potato curry were among their offerings.
Mr Anderson has no ambitions to be a “great cook,” but he says he doesn’t mind “dabbling” in the kitchen and wants more people to do so.
“I was a single parent for about 17 years – two boys living with me, so you learn how to cook cheaply, learn how to cook nice meals, and I enjoyed doing it,” he said.
“It’s all about ending hunger.”
It’s all about ensuring that people eat healthy foods.
“It’s also about addressing obesity.”
If you eat healthy meals, you’re less likely to gain weight.”
Mr Vickers of Stockton South, clad in an apron, admitted that he was out of his element, but said that children should be able to cook more than scones and Victoria sponges when they leave school.
“By giving people better food to eat, you can improve people’s lives,” he said.
I believe that once people try their hand at cooking, they are likely to become addicted.”
Mr Clarke-Smith of Bassetlaw admitted to gaining weight since becoming an MP, saying: “[We] get so used to buying ready-meals, and I’m probably the worst culprit because in Westminster we’re always very busy and never have time to cook things…
Since I’ve been there, I’ve gained one or two stone, and it’s all because I’m not eating healthily enough.
However, this has demonstrated that you can prepare meals ahead of time and store items.
“Brinkwire News Summary.”