The best way to beat obesity and poverty is in the kitchen say MPs


Four politicians converged on a Nottinghamshire school last week to show how it was possible to feed a family of five for seven days for just £50.24. Ashfield Conservative MP Lee Anderson joined forces with an acclaimed chef and the team behind a local food bank to demonstrate the range of meals that can be made on a tight budget. Along with Brendan Clarke-Smith (Bassetlaw), Marco Longhi (Dudley North) and Matt Vickers (Stockton South), he cooked up servings in a ready, steady, cook-style challenge at Sutton Community Academy.

Their dishes included chilli con carne, chicken curry, spaghetti bolognese and sweet potato curry.

Describing how he was forced to pick up cooking skills, Mr Anderson said: “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.”

Dave Marshall, head chef at the award-winning Porterhouse by Barlows restaurant in nearby Annesley, and who regularly delivers online cooking classes, supervised the MPs’ efforts.

He is now preparing to cook 1,000 Christmas meals.

“I believe in educating people to be able to help themselves,” he said.

He added that he was delighted with the MPs’ performances in the kitchen.

“For a chef, seeing people cook fresh is, like, amazing,” he said.



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