Northampton ‘junk food’ cafe fully booked for its first ‘binner’ event

Volunteers for the first 'binner' event at Elsie's
Volunteers for the first 'binner' event at Elsie's

A Northampton café that rescues food on its way to landfill and turns it into edible meals invited guests to its first ‘binner’ event.

Elsie’s The Real Junk Food Café, based at The Lab on the corner of Earl Street and Charles Street, took on an Indian theme for the evening, with special guest chef Mina Patel of The Indian Spice Company rustling up a feast of cabbage Manchurian, aloo murgh and masala chai cake out of ingredients that would otherwise be binned.

Diners enjoy an Indian 'binner' at Elsie's

Diners enjoy an Indian 'binner' at Elsie's

All 22 seats were booked in advance of the event last Monday, complimented with music played on Indian drums by Sandeep Revel.

Elsie’s has been running for barely three months and all staff involved, including food sourcers, cooks, web designers and event organisers are volunteers. So far, it has rescued more than 560kg of food from local shops and suppliers that would have gone to waste, even though it is in a safe and healthy condition to eat.

It is part of a national initiative aimed at demonstrating that the amount of food produced in the country has the potential to go a lot further, if less was wasted.

The café is open Tuesdays to Thursdays between 10am and 2pm, serving coffee and cake and a constantly changing lunch menu. Items are not priced, but customers are asked to donate as much as they feel the food is worth, as a way to keep the project sustainable.

The next Elsie’s binner will be on June 8. To find about more about the café, including upcoming events and how to get involved in supplying or volunteering for the project, visit: ElsiesTRJFPnorthampton on Facebook.