If you go down to the supermarket today, you’re sure of a big surprise – if you live in a certain part of southwest London, at any rate. Because today’s the day the good people of one particular store get their first taste of what their local “vegetable butcher” is able to do with a carrot, pepper or potato.
For three days only, beginning today, Amber Locke will be setting up shop in Sainsbury’s in Wandsworth. A food artist and vegetable expert, her goal is to demonstrate to consumers that veg can be prepared and enjoyed in myriad different ways and seamlessly incorporated into their daily diets.
As well as teaching shoppers about “root to tip” cooking, to maximise the flavour potential of their food and minimise waste, Locke will use her trial counter in the store to give masterclasses in veg preparation. You only chop? That’s so yesterday! Instead learn how to ribbon cut, spiralise, mandolin, wave-cut and julienne. As part of the free service, you’re even welcome to hand over your freshly bought vegetables and have them transformed before your very eyes into new and exciting forms, such as broccoli noodles and avocado ribbons.
Not to be confused with vegetarian butchers – two fine international examples of which we featured earlier this year, The Vegetarian Butcher and The Herbivorous Butcher, as well as homegrown talent Sgaia from Edinburgh – who subvert the carnivorous trope by preparing and serving plant-based alternatives to meat in a (less than) traditional butcher’s shop, a vegetable butcher is all about showing off the raw material of the veg aisle in all its fresh, nutritious glory.
“I am passionate about inspiring people to eat more vegetables and showing them just how many ways there are to prepare and enjoy classic produce such as a carrot or pepper, so [this] is the perfect role for me,” said Locke. “I can’t wait to hear what customers think of my vegetable-inspired creations, and hopefully food fans will be tempted to go home and try one of the new techniques for themselves this summer.”
Visit Amber at Sainsbury’s Wandsworth today, Thursday 16th June (10am – 5pm), Friday 17th June and Saturday 18th June (11am – 7pm).