Our news

High point of summer

June 22nd, 2017

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The English countryside is lovelier than ever as the longest day passes and we enjoy the wonderful summer sunshine. And the thunderstorms!

From our Easy Bean base here in the West Country we actually enjoy a distant but fabulous view of Glastonbury Tor - the mysterious hill rising from the Somerset Levels and topped by an ancient tower.

It’s a famous landmark with a fascinating history  -  it’s believed to be the Avalon of Arthurian legend.

The Tor is just one of the many interesting local features that attract visitors from home and abroad, who often walk the 500 feet or so to the top where they can see for miles around. Join them this summer!



Re-visiting Horatio’s Garden

June 15th, 2017

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You might remember that we attended the Food and Plant Fair at the inspirational Horatio’s Garden last year - and we are pleased to say we will be back this weekend.

Come and see us on Sunday, June 18, from 11am until 3pm. Entry is free and as well as Easy Bean products, there will be lots of delicious food and unusual plants to buy.

Horatio’s Garden is named after Horatio Chapple, a volunteer at the Duke of Cornwall Spinal Treatment Centre, Salisbury, in his school holidays. Horatio and his father David Chapple - a spinal surgeon - came up with the idea for a garden and Horatio drew up a questionnaire to find out what the patients wanted.

Tragically, Horatio was killed at the age of 17 by a polar bear. There followed an outpouring of love and goodwill - and donations flooded in for his garden to be created.

The Food and Plant Fair at Horatio’s Garden can be found at Salisbury District Hospital, SP2 8BJ.

http://www.horatiosgarden.org.uk/fevents/food-and-plant-fair-2017/



Moroccan cuisine is highlight of our range

June 9th, 2017

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Our Moroccan Tagine is one of our top sellers. And no wonder, it is rooted in a cuisine which has delighted people for many centuries.

Berber, Moorish, Arab and Mediterranean influences can all be tasted across the country and have been exported very successfully.

Ingredients for tasty meals, such as saffron, mint, olives oranges and lemons, are often homegrown. Some of the common spices used in Morocco are karfa (cinnamon), skinjbir (ginger), tahmira (paprika), gesbour (coriander) and zaafran beldi (saffron).

Harissa - a paste made of garlic, chillies, olive oil and salt -  adds a fiery kick to many dishes and is considered a staple, while ras el hanout, a dried spice mix, can be found in almost every home.

Of course the tagine is intrinsically linked to Morocco - a slow-cooked stew made in the earthenware dish known by the same name. Tagines are typically made with inexpensive cuts of meat which become tender with slow cooking and may be combined with fruits, including lemon, olives and spices.

Couscous It is the most common starch used to accompany dishes and is typically cooked with spices, vegetables, nuts and dried fruit. When steamed, it becomes light and fluffy.

But, most importantly of all, the essence of Moroccan food is a communal style of eating, with many dishes shared by the family. Hospitality is a very important part of Moroccan culture and making guests welcome is also part of the Islamic teaching. Guests are typically offered food and tea within seconds of entering someone’s home or even shop.

The message is clear - buy several pots of our delicious Moroccan Tagine, invited  a few friends around and enjoy yourself!



The wonders of walking

June 1st, 2017

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We are big fans of walking at Easy Bean - one of us is pictured at the 30km HALF WAY point of a sponsored walk. We are also big fans of finding out about the benefits of strolling through life. Here are some of our top ones.

It helps you at work
Forget coffee, reading blogs (eek!) or after-work drinks - the best way to deal with the pressures of work is by walking. One study showed that just looking at slides of natural scenes could improve recovery from a stressful task - just think about what the real thing can do for you! After a couple of months, to people sometimes show lower blood pressure levels.

It’s better than running (sometimes)
It seems that a nice fast walk can reduce the risk of heart disease more effectively than running. There is a but … you have to walk for longer to match and then exceed the benefits of running. But hey, it’s fun.

Concentrate on this
Your brain gets tired. And the antidote is wandering about the place, exercising your leg muscles and giving the head ones a rest.

Still with the brain…feel the heal
Researchers claim the gentle sights and sounds of nature engage the brain while allowing it ample space to work away in the background on our quandaries and problems. In other words, it lets your mind off the hook for a while.

It makes you more creative
Walking has been shown to improve our ability to shift between modes of thought, and to improve our attention, memory and recovery from mental fatigue, all of which are important for thinking creatively. We also see new things while out walking which in turns sparks the creative juices.

It can help depression
The benefits of physical exercise generally on helping with our mental health are well documented. For example, the chief executive of a mental health charity said: “Exercising with others can have even greater impact, as it provides an opportunity to strengthen social networks, talk through problems with others or simply laugh and enjoy a break from family and work. So ask a friend to join you.”

Is there a downside to all this walking? Sadly, yes. At some point, unfortunately, we have to stop walking and do some actual work.



The joy of five a day

May 27th, 2017

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Here at Easy Bean we’re very enthusiastic about leading a healthy lifestyle and big supporters of the “Five a Day” idea.

As you probably know, it means eating five portions of fruit and vegetables every day and has been proved to help reduce the risk of cancer, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.

All our Easy Bean products contain nutritious pulses and vegetable ingredients and are free from any kind of colouring, flavouring or preservatives - and they count towards the total!

So why not include an Easy Bean one-pot ready meal or crispbread in your daily diet  -  it can be a tasty part of your healthy five a day lifestyle!




Stock up for summer

May 18th, 2017

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Summer’s coming on - rains and showers aside! – and is a time for holidays in the countryside or the seaside.

Don’t forget to add an Easy Bean ready meal to the coolbox for the hungry troops, or seek them out in local suppliers, as the perfect on-the-go meal which is easy to make and doesn’t stop you having fun with family and friends.

A range of delicious varieties from Moroccan Tagine to Indian Sambar to African Palava, will add a touch of the exotic to holiday.

You could also take some tasty Easy Bean crispbreads for the hungry troops to nibble on the way or to add to the lunchtime spread.

You’re may well be planning your holidays already, so why not put an order in for some of our versatile, super-healthy meals and crisp breads now. And pack an umbrella, you know, just in case…



A chilli history lesson

May 11th, 2017

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Our New Mexican Chilli one pot meal is a best seller for us. The inspiration from the meal comes from the state of New Mexico - rather than Mexico itself!. There are many links between classic chilli dishes and American states, including New Mexico and neighbouring Texas.

We use a classic combination of read beans, sweet peppers and tomatoes, spiked with jalapeño chilli in our dish.

Historians agree that the earliest written description of chilli came from a JC Clopper, who lived near Houston, Texas. While his description never mentions the word chilli he wrote in 1828:  ”When they [poor families of San Antonio] have to lay for their meat in the market, a very little is made to suffice for the family; it is generally cut into a kind of hash with nearly as many peppers as there are pieces of meat and this is all stewed together.”

In the 1880s, a market in San Antonio started setting up chilli stands from which chili or bowls o’red, as it was called, were sold by women who were called “chili queens.” A bowl o’red cost diners such as writer O Henry and democratic presidential hopeful William Jennings Bryan ten cents and included bread and water. The fame of chilli con carne began to spread and the dish soon became a major tourist attraction. It was featured at the World’s Fair in Chicago in 1893 at the San Antonio Chilli Stand.

US President Lyndon B Johnson was a big chilli lover. His favorite recipe became known as Pedernales River chilli after the location of his Texas ranch. Johnson preferred venison, which is leaner to beef, probably due to doctor’s orders about his bad heart. Lady Bird Johnson, the First lady, had the recipe printed on cards to be mailed out because of the many thousands of requests the White House received for it.

“Chilli concocted outside of Texas is usually a weak, apologetic imitation of the real thing,” Johnson is quoted as saying. “One of the first things I do when I get home to Texas is to have a bowl of red. There is nothing better.”

In 1977, chilli became the official “state food” of Texas “in recognition of the fact that the only real ‘bowl of red’ is that prepared by Texans.”



Yorkshire born and Yorkshire crisp-bread!

May 4th, 2017

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We’ve had some enquiries about where people might be able to buy our Chickpea Crispbreads in Yorkshire - they have good taste in God’s own county!

Focusing on York and the surrounding area, here a few options. Enjoy!

Tullivers Herbs & Wholefoods, York YO1 8BP (Cheddar Crunch).

Dooleys of Easingwold, YO61 3AF

Hunters of Helmsley, YO62 5BL

Fresh Food Deli, Pockington, York YO4 2SA.



A healthy dose of linseed

April 19th, 2017

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If there is one ingredient that should earn a medal for its nutritional value, it’s linseed. As a source of Omega 3 essential fatty acid, it helps provide protection against a whole range of health issues including heart disease, diabetes and arthritis.

And, it so happens, linseed is one of the ingredients in our Easy Bean Cheddar Crunch Chickpea Crispbread, as well as other goodies including protein-rich chickpea flour, polenta and mature cheddar.

Linseed, also known as flax seeds, is highly recommended for its health-giving properties, and we can’t think of a more enjoyable way to consume it than in our unique crispbread!



Another trophy for the cabinet!

April 6th, 2017

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We like to curry favour with the stars of the food world - so we were very proud when TV chef Antony Worrall Thompson presented us with an award for our fabulous Thai edamame curry!

Like the other judges in the “free-from Oscars” he obviously knows a good thing when he tastes one.

The famous TV chef heaped praise on specialist foody companies like Easy Bean when he told the gathering at the Royal College of Physicians in London: “All credit to the pioneering small producers who have followed their dreams to create wonderful free from foods.”

We won silver in the Veggie Ready Meals category with the Thai curry, one of several nutritious and exotic one-pot meals which also include Moroccan Tagine, New Mexican Chilli, Indian Sambar, French Cuisinées and African Palava.

As our managing director and Queen of the Bean Christina said after the glitzy award ceremony: “The expert judges really know a good thing when they taste one - if you still haven’t had experienced our one-pot ready meals and crispbreads why not try them and judge for yourself!”