First published on Castle FM site, 2 Feb 2012, by Sam Khan-McIntyre
Listen to the audio here:
All kinds of weird and wonderful soups were swapped and tasted at the soupfest held at the Forest Cafe on Saturday 26 January. This was the first of its kind in Britain, inspired by an American phenomenon. Some of the unusual ingredients used were Haggis and freekeh, which is widely used in the Middle East and comprises of green un-matured corn which is then roasted to bring out its flavour.
Approximately 20 attended, each swapping six soups of the same flavour, the most popular of which received a prize of a donated brand new 5 litre cooking pot.
The event was free to attend, with voluntary donations requested towards Streetworks, a homelessness charity, http://www.streetwork.org.uk/.
The soupswap was the brainchild of Bruce Mason whose wife runs the soup cafe Union of Genius, http://www.unionofgenius.com/ and he found it an interesting challenge to concoct a recipe which would meet his wife’s perceived expectations. Pete Campbell of Elephant Juice food Company http://www.elephantjuicefood.com/ brought one of the soups provided free for tasting. Pete’s soup company has contributed to charitable organisations such as Mary’s Meals, which provides food aid in Africa.
Charitable aims are a traditional part of Soup Swap events, which are also social occasions. The Forest Cafe http://blog.theforest.org.uk/ is a community non-profit organisation run by volunteers, and was used for the event due to its ethos. Here the free soups on offer were enthusiastically consumed, and the event was also an opportunity to meet like-minded soup fans and swap recipes.
The day was a huge success, as evidenced by the enthusiastic uproar during the judging and prize giving, and should set a precedent for this ethically conscious phenomenon to take off in Britain.
Published in the Edinburgh Reporter, 29 March 2012 by Sam Khan-McIntyre
The New Boat launched at North Berwick Seabird Centre this week, and The Edinburgh Reporter was aboard when it made a trip to Bass Rock in wintry temperatures.
Margaret Bisset who won the competition to name the boat cut the ribbon and was the first passenger to step on board Seafari Explorer. A six-foot tall furry puffin, called Tammie, the centre’s mascot was also on hand to give the boat a proper send off.
The real puffins on Bass Rock are due to arrive in a month’s time, along with other wildlife, although a colony of seals were spotted to the excitement of all onboard, as well as many gannets, although we were told that the majority of these are also yet to arrive. Skipper Colin Aston who had sailed the boat from Southampton through gale force winds was suitably dressed for the occasion in a captain’s uniform.
Listen to the story of the launch here:-
The boat takes 57 passengers on an hour-long trip around the Bass Rock and Craigleath Island. The trip is an opportunity to witness wildlife close at hand, and is suitable for the whole family.It will also be used as a floating clasroom to teach school children about wildlife. The boat will be running on Good Friday and throughout the Easter weekend, and will run until October.
For further details and trip times, visit http://www.seabird.org/index.php
Originally published on 98.8 Castle FM website, on 08 November 2012. Link to story.
A day for chocolate lovers, and a delight to the senses, the first chocolate festival in Scotland is a huge hit. There were a host of chocolate stalls full of mouthwatering chocolates on offer, as well as talks and children’s chocolate workshops at The Scotsman Hotel in Edinburgh.
Many of the stalls carry unusual flavours of chocolate such as haggis, or rhubarb, and one includes a delightful cocktail flavoured collection beautifully presented in a cocktail glass.
The event was extremely busy, and during the talk by the company Chocolate Tree many had to find space on the floor in the crowded lecture theatre. During the talk raw Cacao beans were passed around, which many admitted to never having seen before, as well as pure roasted cacao which was bitter to the taste.
The plan for next year includes an increased number of chocolate stalls as well as a larger venue. This year’s success shows that Scotland’s chocolate revolution is well under way.
Full report by Sam Khan-McIntyre at The Scotsman Hotel.
On the left: Festival stall by Perthshire based Scottish Chocolate Centre.
On the right: Sharon Grimshaw of Hot Chocolates
By Sam Khan-McIntyre and Sylvia Montes
Bethany is a 30 year-old homelessness charity, and helps 4,000 people in Scotland every year.
We met Sydney Stewart from Edinburgh who five years ago had nowhere to live and was accepted at a Bethany Hostel. He is no longer homeless and is helping the charity which put him back on his feet. He raises funds by running marathons and volunteering.
Paul Mcloughlan is part of the support staff, helping men with alcohol and drug problems. He was however a resident at one point, due to his own problems with drink and drugs. He states his faith in Jesus was important in his recovery.
Another success story is Craig. He suffered from psychosis for twenty years due to a drug addiction, but is now clean. He enjoys being part of Bethany’s Passing The Baton project, about which he says, “I really enjoy going along to their social events.”
For more information on Bethany, go to http:www.bethanychristiantrust.com/?page_id=1810
By Sam Khan-McIntyre November 2011
St Andrews Square anti-capitalist protest, the camp, the protesters’ and public views.
Occupy Edinburgh 2011 St. Andrews Square from sam khan-mcintyre on Vimeo.
By Sam Khan-McIntyre and Sylvia Montes
Don’t let this day pass by without a special gesture to the person you love and admire
Mother’s day has it its origins deep in history, falling on the middle Sunday of Lent, the Christian time of fasting.it has been celebrated on this day since the 16th century.This day was chosen because the fasting rules were relaxed, due to the biblical story of feeding the five thousand.
It is believed the celebration is influenced by the Roman Spring Festival of Cybele, the Mother Goddess.The date for this was chosen by Christians as the religion spread.
400 years ago, this was the day when people visited their mother church, it was said they had gone ‘a mothering’.This was the largest church in the area, and where they had been baptised.
Click on this link for Simnel cake, a traditional British cake with young servants baked and took home to their mothers on this day, the only day of the year they were allowed to visit their families.
This may be a special present to bake this year to show your mother how much you love her and make her feel special with something personal