Greene King, the pub company and brewer, has joined forces with its national charity partner Macmillan Cancer Support to produce a series of recipes for people living with cancer. Ten easy-to-follow recipes to help people who have problems eating during and after cancer treatment were created by Greene King’s food development team and Macmillan nutritionists.
Difficulties eating can relate to the cancer itself, such as weight loss or poor appetite, or the side effects of treatment such as changing tastes. The recipes will aim to provide solutions at Christmas time when food and cooking is so important to so many people.
Greene King has been working in partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support since 2012, during which time it has raised over £4million. This money has been used by the charity to fund vital professionals including specialist Macmillan Dietitians like Jo Pain, who worked closely on this project.
Jo says: “As a consequence of their treatment, some people with cancer may experience a dry and sore mouth, or have difficulty swallowing, so we have created delicious soft options and soups. Others may not have much of an appetite, so we’ve designed small dishes high in vital nutrients. We know many people with cancer have low energy, so we’ve also ensured these recipes are simple to prepare and cook too.”
Retaining a sense of normality can help people cope with cancer and being unable to celebrate Christmas can be really upsetting. Macmillan and Greene King hope these traditional Christmas recipes will also help people with cancer manage this emotional impact, by enabling them to enjoy a delicious meal with friends and family.
Clare, 44, was diagnosed with cancer in 2016, and says “I was shocked when I was diagnosed with cancer. With my age and a healthy lifestyle, I didn’t expect it.
“My treatment had really terrible side effects, including being fitted with a feeding tube for several months. When it was removed I had a sore mouth and throat which made eating difficult. When Christmas came around I wanted to celebrate. Even though I could only manage small portions, eating Christmas dinner with my children was like winning the lottery.”
The new recipes, which are available alongside tips and advice, at www.macmillan.org.uk/christmasrecipes, were tested by people living with cancer and their families at Greene King’s food development kitchen, to ensure they are simple to make and delicious to eat.
Rooney Anand, chief executive officer at Greene King, said: “We’ve partnered with Macmillan for more than six years now, and our teams have done an incredible job in raising more than £4m so far. But this is a positive new way for us to support people with cancer. We were pleased to be able to offer our expertise and professional kitchen facilities to make a positive impact on the lives of people living with cancer this Christmas.”
Peter Harbrecht-Parker, food development manager at Greene King, said: “Creating these recipes with Macmillan was a really exciting opportunity for the team. I started with some of my favourite Christmas dishes, and then worked closely with Macmillan to tailor the ingredients and method and make sure they were ideal for people with cancer.”
“My personal favourite recipe is the Boxing Day curry. As well as being great for people with changing tastes, it’s a delicious way to use up left-overs too.”