Wednesday, 28 November 2012

from Sao Paulo, Brazil

My name’s Camila and I’m Brazilian. I live in São Paulo, the most important city of Brazil.

It’s a pleasure for me talk (or better, write) to you. I’ve known about you by a famous Brazilian News Site, and I was curious to know more . Let me say that I think your blog (and the practice of charity involved on it) incredible, congratulations. The world needs people like you.

I’d like to participate sending a picture of some typical Brazilian School meal, unluckily I have none here. (in other hand I think that is good for you, because you’d be very sad to see what our or children have to eat every day at school)

I left school many years ago but I know that the situation is the same until nowadays
There is no many choices, it’s almost always rice, beans or pasta with some kind of sausage. The taste is terrible, I’m 23 years old now and I still remember the smell of this food.

Here we live surrounded of corruption and the powerful people (those of the government) have deals with suppliers who divert part of the payment for your own pocket. The money remainder is used for buy food of lower quality, many times spoiled or out-dated.

I’m sorry about my English but I couldn't leave the opportunity to share this with you.
I hope you can improve the situation of school dinner in your country and in other places of the world (maybe till here) Thanks for be so kind and thanks to your father for help and support you on this mission.

Best Regards.
Camila – Brazil

Here is the link about the news I saw:

Below there’s a picture of an example of what is served to our alumni just to illustrated or situation.

Believe, our children eat this every day. Really looks like delicious, don’t you think?

Monday, 26 November 2012

Parents in school- Chester, UK

Dear VEG

We think your blog is great. School meals have still got a long way to go and you have done so much to keep them on the agenda, as well as doing so much for Mary’s Meals of course. I am a Mum of two daughters, 10 and 13, and I have been very impressed with your writing. It is always accurate, engaging, appropriate and thoughtful. Many adults could not write as well as you do.

I am sending you a picture of MY lunch today. My daughter’s high school has a week when parents and grandparents can come to school and have lunch with their daughter/granddaughter. It’s a great idea because not only do I get a little peek into her world but I get to see what is really available in the dining room.

Sorry it’s not a great picture, I was trying to take it without being noticed. I chose a sub (bread roll) because that was what my daughter was having. There were also hot meals, sandwiches and a counter where you can choose from different fillings and breads. For pudding there are fruits, yoghurts, a hot pudding and tray bakes. You pay per item so it is up to you what you have and how much you pay. It amuses my daughter that the pupils pay less than the teachers because they do not have to pay VAT.

I chose a spicy bean burger sub with chilli sauce and cheese. Salad was included which I thought was good. For pudding I had shortbread.

The food all looked nice and was hot. My bean burger was tasty, but not spicy, and the shortbread was just right, crispy outside and soft inside. I bought a bottle of fizzy water for an extra 80p but then found out there was a water dispenser. I didn’t like not having a plate but the subs come in a clever envelop that opens out to eat from. It was hard to see everything that was available and make choices quickly in a busy environment. I would have liked to see more brown bread, more vegetables, nicer fruit and more salads but my daughter tells me that sadly they would not sell.

I think all schools should invite parents in to their dining rooms every now and again.

Food-o-meter- 7/10
Mouthfuls- too busy talking to count
Courses- main/dessert
Health Rating- 5/10
Price- £2.58 (not including the bottle of water)
Pieces of hair- 0

Keep up the great work
Fiona (Chester)

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Thanksgiving- Care and Share

Hello Martha and friends,

This Thursday in America we celebrated Thanksgiving. It's what you would call a bank holiday, a harvest holiday, where family and friends get together to give thanks (and eat!). My friends and family were devastated by Hurricane Sandy, some of my friends lost their homes, and my mother was without power for two weeks. I live in Jersey City (how many seconds? I'll give you a hint, we're a five minute train ride from one of the biggest cities in the US) (Took me 13!) and there was flooding up to about four blocks from me, but we only lost power for two days. I have been volunteering to help out with the people who lost everything. My friend Jeremy took the picture of the Hudson River the morning before Hurricane Sandy hit. During high tide, the Hudson River is usually about 8-10 feet below the waterfront walkway. You can see the Freedom Tower and lower Manhattan across the way.

Although every family has their own Thanksgiving traditions, there are most traditional ones that most families adhere to, such as turkey, [american] football and the Macy's day parade. The parade is usually very touristy, with gigantic balloons that can take about 50-100 people to hold. Although it's a short train ride, we usually watch it on TV.

I've been hosting Thanksgiving for the past couple of years, so I do all the cooking. Although I'm a vegetarian myself, my family and friends are not, so I do cook a turkey. However, every other food I make is vegetarian.

Around Thanksgiving, if you spend a certain amount of money at the supermarket, you qualify for a free turkey. I qualified for two! I donated one turkey to a relief group who was cooking Thanksgiving dinners for families displaced by Hurricane Sandy and one to our local shelter.

The plate pictured is my plate, which is why there is no turkey on it.

From clockwise:
Vegetarian stuffing: Stuffing is also a Thanksgiving staple. Some families stuff the turkey with it, but it wouldn't be vegetarian that way. Stuffing is usually vegetables, croutons and some broth, some people put chicken or turkey in it as well. Mine is made with portabella mushroom soup.

Rice pilaf with red peppers and roasted pine nuts: My family always serves rice at every meal.

Cranberry sauce: Also a thanksgiving staple. In this country a lot of families buy gelled cranberry sauce in a can from the supermarket. The gelled cranberries have a texture like jell-o. Growing up, my mother always cooked from scratch, so my siblings and I don't like things like gelled cranberries.

Squash casserole: Since squash is considered a harvest food, it's pretty traditional to have some sort of squash dish on the table. I used yellow squash and zucchini.

Corn bread.

I also served candied yams and broccoli rabe. As I'm not the biggest fan of yams, so I didn't have them on my plate, and the broccoli rabe I forgot to put on my plate before the picture.

After a football break, we had dessert.
I served, apple pie, one of my favorite desserts! I tried to make a leaf pattern, but I'm not sure if anyone could tell.

I also served chocolate chip peanut butter cookies and chocolate chip pumpkin bread. My boyfriend loves dessert, as seen by his plate, and tried everything.

We rated food and dessert separately:
Food-o-meter- 9.5/10 (My boyfriend doesn't like mushrooms, so he took off half a point)
Mouthfuls- We forgot to count!
Courses-Dinner (there were appetizer/snacks put out, but no one really ate them because dinner was ready)
Health Rating- 9/10 (the candied yams were made with sugar)
Price- Hard to figure per plate, but probably around $6 USD
Pieces of hair- 0 (thank goodness!)
Spills: 0 (first time!)

Not everyone had dessert or tried everything served, so that's why we rated it separate.
Food-o-meter- 10/10
Mouthfuls- A lot!
Health Rating- 5/10 (Apples and pumpkin brought it up!)
Price-Hard to figure per plate, but probably around $3 USD
Pieces of hair- 0

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your friends!


VEG here

Thank you Tab. I think I understand Thanksgiving better now. You care and you share. I hope you had a lovely day.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

My trip to the Liberty Awards in London

I have not written about my trip to London for the Liberty Human Rights Awards before because I didn't have a photo to show you until today. I went to London on the sleeper train which was very bumpy. I enjoyed parts of the night but i got on it very late after my bedtime and so I was awake when I should have been asleep.

In London we went straight to the Palace of Westminster. Lord McConnell of Glenscorrodale arranged our visit. He's a big Mary's Meals supporter and it was very kind of him. I learnt that Lords can pick where they are 'Lord of' and Glenscorrodale is on Arran and I can see Arran from my bedroom window.

You can see my security tag in the photograph. The tour was brilliant but I didn't understand all the history between Scotland and England. The rooms are beautiful but you must not sit down when visiting the House of Lords or the House of Commons. I leant on the dispatch box in the House of Commons and pretended to be Prime Minister! You can go to the lobby and ask to see your MP and they must come and see you if they are there. I didn't try asking for my MP, maybe next time.

The Liberty Awards were in the South Bank Centre in the evening. It's always hard when you arrive because you don't know anyone and everyone else is an adult. Loads of people came and said hello straight away though and were really kind. It was brilliant. The BBC came as well and asked me some questions at the start.

I don't think Liberty agrees with the Government all the time. A man called the Attorney General said it was important Liberty kept asking questions. I didn't understand every award winner but I some I did. Some people had been fighting for fairness since before I was born. That's a long time.

'Photo Bill Knight'

When I saw Rowan Atkinson come out from behind the curtains I could not believe it! I wanted to call him Mr Bean or Johnny English but all I managed to say was thank you. His expression in the photograph is classic! My award was called Human Rights Young Person of the Year and it says on the certificate,

'For defending free expression when she stood up to her local council after they banned her publishing pictures of school meals on her blog, NeverSeconds. Reports of the ban caused widespread national and international outcry and, as a result, the council backed down. Since then, her website has been visited by over 6 million people and has raised over £100,000 for Mary's Meals, a charity which helps feed children in the developing world.'

I am very proud of my award but I don't want to sound big headed. We had to get the sleeper straight home afterwards but I met an actor called Benedict Cumberbatch and I asked him and Shami Chakrabarti who is in charge of Liberty to sign my copy of our book.

Going to the Houses of Parliament and the Liberty Awards on the same day was a great experience and it has left me thinking why we need both.


Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Hello Veg!

I am sure you have hundreds of meal pictures rolling in but I think
you have not have one from Estonia (I clicked through your blog and
read all your previous posts one day...).

I am an university student in Tallinn but I also work in a smaller
college in a southern town called Viljandi.

I have always been attached to school as my parents are teachers. I
was known not to like many school lunches so my Mum came and saved me
many times (finishing up for me). As I grew I started to like more
vegetables and such.

The food system in general schools is that all children up until 9th
grade (end of secondary school) get their lunch for free, some
parishes also have high school lunch for free. The lunch is always a
hot meal (a soup and a dessert, a dish and salad etc) with bread and
drink. Often schools have cafe's or small booth to buy fast food/sweet
buns/chocolate etc and I am afraid these are also quite popular...

Anyway, here's my lunch back from October that I enjoyed a lot! At our
diner we usually have at least 2-3 daily choices and a soup or two, at
least one dish is vegetarian (like mine that day).

On the left a red cabbage and beet-root salad, on the right boiled
rice (I skipped the sauce). On top of it, a slice of baked zucchini
with cheese and tomatoes. Some rye bread and my cup of coffee (I had a
very long lecture so I decided for coffee this time, but I usually have
water) It was very very delicious and I especially enjoyed the
scrumptious salad, very fresh and tasty! I think I like red cabbage
way more than usual or any salad leaves...

Food-o-meter- 10/10
Mouthfuls- a lot, forgot to count
Courses- main, salad
Health Rating- 10/10
Price- 2.30€ / 1.9 GBP
Pieces of hair- 0

Best wishes
Hannele, from Estonia
p.s - I miss Scotland a lot. I lived in Edinburgh and worked in
Livingston for one year and I must say Scotland is one of my favorite
places to be!

Monday, 19 November 2012

From Barcelona in secret.

Hello Martha and mates,

I work as a cook in a school of Barcelona. It is a pleasure for me to show you what we have prepared this week. I prefer not to tell you my name because I’m not sure that I’m allowed to take pictures of the meals.

On Monday we made fusilis with tomatoe sauce and cheese. For second course we made deep-fried fillet of pangassius and salad.

On Tuesday we made lentils for the main course and potatoes omelette for the second course. But I didn’t remember to take photos of them and only I can made the photo of the egg-allergic menu: hamburguers instead of omelette.

On Wednesday we made zucchini cream with “tropezones” (deep-fried bread cubes) and for second course scallop with lettuce. Actually I must have cooked grilled pork tenderloin, but due to a strike the pork tenderloin did not arrive on time.

On Thursday we made “escudella soup” (a typical Catalonian soup) and for the second course chicken breast grilled with french fries.

On Friday we made rice with carrot, zucchini and pork loin, like “paella style”, and meatballs for second course.

For the dessert we usually have fruit (apple, orange, clementines, banana, pear, peach in siroupe, melon and watermelon) and some days yogurt. The bread is from a bakery, and it’s great. And the water is bottled because the tap water it’s not very good. The price is around 6 euros, and some children have public aids to reduce this price.
I send you greetings from Spain and congratulations for this blog.

Spanish cook :)

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Busy with books

Thank you Ian for your dinners from San Diego (38s, I am out of practice). I have never seen trays like that before and it must be very strange to use them. I do agree with your scores though.

On Wednesday my whole family went to Manchester to Media City where the BBC make television programmes. We went because we launched our book on Thursday and we were invited by Louise who came to our house with The One Show.

Louise and Charlie were really nice and it was easy to chat to them. They showed a clip from Malawi and Dad and I sneaked onto the sofa when it was on. That's how they do it. I didn't watch it because I don't like seeing myself. Louise met us after the show but I didn't eat in the BBC canteen so no photo and rating! She took us to meet Helen Skelton from Blue Peter and Barney the dog. He is very cute but he has small legs. I think his legs look longer on television. You can see we all had to wear a pass with our photo on to go into the buildings.

Helen took us all to the Blue Peter studio. There were so many lights above you that you couldn't see the ceiling.

When we were going we met Barney the other presenter outside. He signed my special copy of my book. Barney said he did a portrait but it was just two dots and a line!

Travelling in a car when it rains makes me sleepy and I slept on the way to Glasgow. Journalists came to meet us in a cafe in an arch under the railway and we also went by taxi to the STV studios. Dad had to wear more make up! I signed some books for Rona and you can see the interview here. We filmed it in the afternoon but I was in bed when it was on.

Here are some of our books at the book launch. I signed a lot of copies and thank you to everyone that came.

There weren't many left at the end of the night. Our book is going to be in WHSmiths across the UK, Waterstones in Scotland and independent bookshops everywhere. I think we broke Amazon by selling out but more copies will be there tomorrow and the printers are making more today. It went into the top 200 on Amazon. You can also get it on a Kindle from Amazon websites all over the world but my favourite is in Japan! It doesn't matter where you buy our book every copy gives children 25 meals in Malawi and that's why we wrote it.

When I was in Glasgow my Aunt and Uncle went to the The Scottish Politician of the Year awards. I won an award for best campaigner which I want to share with all of you and with the children at Lirangwe School. When I do interviews I am always asked about the children at Lirangwe school singing. It is not something I will forget.

Thank you!


Something new!

Today I ate something that I never ever ate before. It was actually really yummy. Everyone else at my table except Spencer, my friend, thought it was gross. I had some chili and cheese in a bread bowl, salad and some canned pineapple. There was beans, corn, peppers and it wasn’t spicy. It was vegetarian. I ate it all. Next week is vacation and then I go back to the famous baba lunch, a sandwich made by my dad.

Food-o-meter- 10/10
Mouthfuls- 41
Courses- Chili and bread, salad bar and milk
Health Rating- 8/10
Price- $2.00 US
Pieces of hair- 0

From Ian in San Diego. Thanks for letting me send you letters.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Hi Veg, It’s Ian, i’ve come back again. Today I ate something again totally different. Today I was first in line so I got to pick what I really wanted. Right now, I’m eating some mozzarella bread sticks and marinara sauce, orange slices and milk. It’s actually pretty good. I think it was the best school lunch. Why do we have a paper box for lunch? Because, my mom also helped to banish styrofoam lunch trays.

Food-o-meter- 7/10
Mouthfuls- 53
Courses-Mozzarella bread-sticks and marinara, salad bar and milk

Health Rating- 5/10
Price- $2.00 US
Pieces of hair- 0

Mom wants to add:
Our school is part of a pilot school of San Diego Unified School District to use these cardboard boats and recycle them instead of throwing the styrofoam trays away. We have about 1 bag of trash from lunch each day instead of 15 bags. The students also compost and recycle the milk cartoons. We really wish the kids had real trays, forks, cups and a dishwasher like they do at your school VEG.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Chocolate Milk Banished!

Hi Veg! It’s Ian again. Today I ate something totally different. Today I wasn’t that late for lunch so I got something decent. Right now, I’m eating a chicken sandwich, some canned peaches, lettuce and drinking low-fat milk. There isn’t any longer chocolate milk at school because my mom and other parents requested that they not serve it and the principals agreed to banish it from our school.

The lettuce was a 10/10 with no dressing. The chicken inside the bun tasted like the same chicken nuggets. They didn’t taste like real chicken. I could have tried a beef gordita or a sunflower jelly sandwich on goldfish bread whatever that it.

Food-o-meter- 5/10
Mouthfuls- 53
Courses-chicken sandwich, salad bar and milk
Health Rating- 5/10
Price- $2.00 US
Pieces of hair- 0

Book launch day!

VEG's dad here

It's early and we're all in Salford, Manchester, at Media City so Martha and I can go on BBC Breakfast News to talk about our experiences and new book that launches today. Media City is an amazing place and seems never to sleep.

We got our hands on our book yesterday and its fabulous. It looks beautiful and is full of colour photos and it has a lovely feel and weight in the hand. A certain VEG couldn't put it down!

Once we've chatted with Louise and Charlie on the breakfast sofa we're meeting up with Helen from Blue Peter and Barney the dog before heading north to Glasgow for some more interviews, a trip to the STV news studio and then the official launch where we get to catch up with all our friends and supporters and say our thanks to you.

If we sell 1000 copies of our book that will be 25,000 Mary's Meals in Malawi. Imagine if we sell 5000 or even 10,000 copies. Who knows?



Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Didn't taste like real chicken.

My name is Ian and I’m from San Diego, California. Usually my dad makes my lunch, but this week we did something different. Today I ate school lunch. There was no lunch line because I was late for lunch because I stayed at my table too long so I didn’t have to wait in line.

Food-o-meter- 3/10
Mouthfuls- 36
Courses- Chicken nuggets, salad bar, didn’t take milk
Health Rating- 3/10
Price- $2.00 US?
Pieces of hair- 0

I ate some ketchup, chicken nuggets, canned pears and 3 orange slices. The chicken nuggets were cold and the only choice to eat left. If you would say, “Is this food weird?” I would say yes. They didn’t even taste like real chicken! The orange slices were fresh like just pulled off a tree. The pears had added sugar. They tasted really, really good but would rather had fresh slices. I ate it all.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Cumbernauld, Scotland.

Hi Veg!

My name's Aileen - I'm 12 and in my first year of high school.
I live in Scotland too - in Cumbernauld.

I only started reading your blog today and
we are not allowed cameras in school so
I won't be able to send you any pictures of
my school dinners, although I might send
you a photo of my packed lunch if I remember!

On Tuesday I went a school dinner.
Everybody who is going a school dinner gets
a main, starter or dessert and a drink for £1.80.
It is supposed to be a starter or dessert, but I've
never seen them do starters before - maybe I will
ask like you did - what do you think?

For my lunch I had a sausage roll, milk and a
piece of shortbread.
I always like milk but it is a wee bit boring.
The pastry in my sausage roll was undercooked
and soggy, but it was ok if you took a big bite of it
with the sausage.
I enjoyed my shortbread although I would have loved
some fruit and vegetables with my meal.

Mouthfuls: I didn't count...
Food-o-meter: 3/10 - Was disappointed at lack of fruit & veg
Courses: Main/Dessert
Health rating: 2/10
Price: £1.80
Pieces of hair: 0

Yesterday for my packed lunch I had tuna mayo on a piece of
granary baguette, orange juice, a little pot of bits of red
pepper and cherry tomatoes, a little pot of grapes and a
mini crunchie from Halloween. I really enjoyed my packed
lunch and I was raring to go afterwards!
My sandwich was really tasty and filled me up.
I enjoyed the red pepper (which was sweet and crunchy) and
the baby tomatoes which exploded with juice in your mouth.
The grapes were really big and firm and they were lovely
to bite into!
I drank my orange juice (with bits - my favorite!) and I also
drank some water from my bag.
The mini crunchie was a sweet ending.

Mouthfuls: I didn't count...
Food-o-meter: 10/10 - Delicious!
Courses: Main/Veg/Fruit/Dessert
Health rating: 9/10 - (Lost a point because of the crunchie!)
Price: Free
Pieces of hair: 0

Maybe I'll stick to packed lunches then...

P.S - I think the amount of money you raised for Mary's Meals
was amazing! I put together a backpack for the Backpack
Appeal :)

Sunday, 11 November 2012


Veg here

Yesterday was 'I am Malala Day' and I spent a lot of time thinking about her. I am glad so many people have signed the petition. I have. I hope it works so no one else gets hurt because they want to go to school.

Malala Day from Education Envoy on Vimeo.

Today was Remembrance Day and I went with the Brownies to the special church service and to lay a wreath.

It has been a weekend full of thinking. I have written some ideas about school dinners but it can wait.


Friday, 9 November 2012

No pics in school in Germany

Hi Veg!

Call me Pisces. I'm mother of two daughters and we live in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

My younger daughter will turn 8 soon and is in 3rd grade of primary school, the older one is almost 11 and in 6th grade of Gymnasium. They both started school early so they are the youngest pupils in their classes.

In Germany, there are 16 federal states of different sizes – some states actually are just one city, such as Bremen - and each has its own general education system which makes things hard to explain. Every child attends primary school (grade 1 – 4, approx. from age 6 – 10, in some states grade 1 – 6, age 6 – 12). Afterwards, they go to secondary school. The traditional school system after primary school is the tripartite system: Hauptschule -secondary modern school-, Realschule -middle school- and Gymnasium -an academic secondary high school- but there are Gesamtschulen (comprehensive schools), too. I took the translations from an Internet dictionary, not sure if they’re really correct.
In some states, teachers recommend a certain kind of secondary school for a child but in the end the parents decide whether they’re going to send their son / daughter there or choose another kind. In some states, the teachers’ commendation is mandatory. In some areas, first and second graders are educated together, in others not.

Both of my daughters’ schools have canteens. Meals are sponsored by the municipal administration to keep the prices low and make school dinners attractive. We pay € 3,00 (£ 2,39) per meal, some students are eligible to reduce-fare and pay € 1,00 (£ 0,80) per meal. The meals usually consist of one main course (vegetarian choice available), salad, dessert and fruit. Since pupils are not allowed to use electronic devices on school premises my girls can’t take pictures of their school dinners.

Not to mention that they don’t eat there too often since they don’t like the food (unless there’s something like pizza on the menu). “Your good cooking spoiled us, Mum”, they say. I would feel flattered but if I didn't think they just try to make me pack their favorite lunches. Last week was a week of packed lunches because the school menus had many meals my daughters loath. Semolina pudding, for example, or vegetarian bratwurst.

I took a guess at the costs of each lunch. The pomegranate for example was 0,99 € but was divided in several servings and so was the box of cherry tomatoes and the bag of clementines.


Rye-wheat bread with butter, a clementine, pomegranate seeds, homemade turkey meatballs (leftovers from dinner the day before), a mini-babybel and some candy as a treat. Both children said they liked it a lot but would have liked it even better if there had been some ketchup for the meatballs.
Bites: Both girls forgot to count all week because they were busy chatting with their friends.

Food-o-meter: 8/10 (the missing ketchup…)
Health meter: 7 /10 (-3 for the candy)
Price: about 1,50 € (£ 1,20)


Rye-wheat bread with butter and gouda bunny, mini-cabanossi, cherry tomatoes and grape-and-cheese-sticks. I gave them extra sticks because they like to share them with their friends. My younger daughter doesn’t like the cabanossi so she had pretzel snacks instead.

Food-o-meter: 9/10 (my older daughter rated it 10/10, the younger one 8/10)
Health meter: 7/10 because the sausages contain lots of salt and fat
Price: about 1,30 € (£ 1,04)


Here we’ve got leftovers from supper the day before: a bagel with tuna salad (canned tuna mixed with a little bit of Miracle Whip, sour cream, chopped cornichons and grated cheese), cherry tomatoes, grapes, a piece of sweet red pepper. There’s also a homemade cookie and a small piece of chocolate for a treat. My younger daughter didn’t finish the bagel, it was too much for her but she ate about half of it.

Food-o-meter: 10/10
Health meter: 7/10 (- 3 for the mayo in the tuna salad and the chocolate)
Price: about 1,80 € (£1,28)


This one’s a picture of my snack box. I was in a hurry that morning so I forgot to take pictures of my children’s boxes.
It’s whole-wheat bread with cream cheese and tomato puree, bits of wieners, red pepper and cherry tomatoes. In the small box there’s a dip made of quark (curd?), yoghurt, lemon juice, fresh herbs and spices. My daughters also had half an apple and some raisins.

Food-o-meter: 10/10
Health meter: 10/10 – no candy today and all food groups covered
Price: about 1 € (£ 0,80)


This is today’s lunch: whole-wheat bread with butter, lettuce, tomatoes and cheese, some walnuts, a clementine and a couple of homemade cookies.
Food-o-meter: 6/10 (They don’t like whole-wheat bread unless it comes in bitesized pieces.).

Health meter: 9/10 because of the cookies although they’re homemade (spelt flour, little sugar, no preservatives)
Price: about 1,50 € (£ 1,20)

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Woman's Hour Friday 10am

VEG's dad here

On Wednesday we went up to the BBC Radio studio in Oban. It's in a small room off a close and you collect a key from a hotel then let yourselves in.

We chatted to Dame Jenni Murray. We were incredibly nervous and it probably will show. Martha talked about her blog, Mary's Meals and Malawi. We forgot to mention our charity book again though! We aren't very good sales people.

Hope you get a chance to listen!


Lunch on the go.

My name is Eryn and I am a 12-year-old girl from Oregon, USA. We went travelling for the summer. This is a meal we had on the train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, Thailand. The meal was very good, but the picture isn't because the train was moving.

Mouthfuls: 59 (there were about 15 I didn't eat because I was full)
Food-o-meter: 6/10
Courses: Main/soup/dessert (not pictured because we got it later)
Health rating: 7/10
Price: 180 baht, 6 US dollars, or 3.86 British pounds
Pieces of hair: 0

At the front is the sweet-and-sour chicken, onions, and corn, rice, and a slice each of cucumber and carrot. At the upper right-hand corner is the slightly-spicy chicken curry with garlic in it. In the other corner is the clear soup, which had white seaweed, chicken, and herbs in it. For dessert we each had three small slices of pineapple. Sorry about all the glare, but because we were on a moving train everything was covered in Saran wrap so it wouldn't spill everywhere.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

From Hamm, Germany

Dear Martha,
i read about your blog in our local newspaper. In my opinion your blog is a really good idea :-) . Well, let me tell you about my school dinner.

I'm 13 years old and I'm in class 8 so I'm one of the smaller students. In my school we don't have something like a canteen. There's only a cafeteria where you can buy snacks like sandwiches, ice cream, candy or chocolate. It's really unhealthy so most of the students bring their own food to school. The teaching ends at 1:10 pm or 2:05 pm and then some of the small students go to after-school care, but one of my friends who goes there said that the food there is disgusting. She said it's muddy (Sorry, I don't know the right word :-\ ).

But now they built a canteen in my school. I think many pupils look forward to eat there.

Go on with your
blog because it's really good :-) .
Greetings, Ingunn from Hamm in Germany

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Big weekend, bigger week!

Veg here

This week started with me worrying about Ms El, Zee and Sunflower in the storm. I'm glad they are OK but their school hasn't reopened yet. Maybe they will tell us about it when they get back. There are lots of packets of things I have not seen before like the Veggie Straws. Do you have information on the packet like we do on our food?

It's a really big weekend because Mary's Meals are celebrating tomorrow!

They are ten years old and everyone is welcome to join the celebration in Glasgow tomorrow. I am going and there is going to be a film premiere! The film is called 'Child 31' and there will be a special guest. I don't know who it is.

The BBC are showing our documentary on the BBC News Channel this weekend. I get embarrassed watching myself on television! It is good though so please watch it if you can.

It is National School Meals Week next week so I think a lot of people will be talking about their dinners. The website is I am not sure what you do next week if you don't love your school meals. I would like to see all your meals next week, good or bad!

I am smiling all the time at the moment because it's not just Mary's Meals that are ten next week. I'll be in double figures too!


Thursday, 1 November 2012

Salam Alaikum Martha!

We are a grade 2 class at a school in the United Arab Emirates. We have been studying healthy eating at school, more specifically what food we need to make our brains work really well. We have also been looking at what makes us different. It has been great fun looking on your blog at all the different meals from around the world. The picture we have sent you one of the healthier lunches in our class. The croissant is stuffed with za'atar. Za'atar is a Middle Eastern spice mixture used in many meats and even vegetables. Miss Emma, our teacher, likes it on her homemade pizzas. Because our country is so hot most of the food is imported from other countries. We hope to keep reading your blog and keep up with all your fabulous work (saw you on BBC here the other week, so cool!). Ma`a as-salāma

Food-o-meter: 9/10
Health: 8/10. The fruit juice does have a lot of sugar. Milk or water would have been better.
Recess: We play outside for 15 minutes, then come inside to eat for 15 minutes.
Price: Brought it from home. Thursday is canteen day in our class.