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Free cook kits given out to families as part of The Blank Page Project

Suffolk Libraries is distributing 300 family cook kits through its Blank Page winter workshops which kick off this week.

The Blank Page Project offers a range of free fun creative workshops for 10-16 year olds during school holidays. The winter workshops start on Thursday 21 December and will be running at libraries in Haverhill, Stowmarket, Gainsborough, Lowestoft, Chantry, Great Cornard, Halesworth and Bungay.

The cook kits are being given to all the young people taking part to take home to their families to encourage them to cook a healthy and nutritious meal together.

The Blank Page Project gives 10-16 year-olds the chance to express their creativity through a range of mediums at high-quality workshops run by local artists. Blank Page was launched for the Easter holidays and is funded through the Holiday Activity Fund which aims to provide free activities during school holidays for those who might not otherwise be able to afford them.

The free kits include the Feed Your Family for Under a Fiver debut cookbook from TikTok sensation Mitch Lane which is packed full of easy, comforting, crowd-pleasing recipes that anyone can make on a budget, no matter their experience. The recipes in the book don’t demand much space, expensive kitchen equipment, or a long list of ‘store cupboard’ spices and ingredients.

The kit will also include all the ingredients you need to cook a wholesome lunch or dinner for four people. The recipe is for chunky Mexican bean soup and is taken from the cookbook so families have everything they need to make this super nutritious vegan, vegetarian, gluten and dairy free meal which is perfect for a cold winters day.

Katie Puls, Suffolk Libraries Youth Activities Producer, said:

“We understand the value that cooking together as a family holds and nutritious home-cooked meals can have a big impact on our health and wellbeing. We wanted to give an extra Christmas gift to the families of the young people who’ll be enjoying our workshops this Christmas and hope these packs will bring families together to discover some delicious low-cost meals.”

Mitch Lane was delighted to hear his book had been chosen to feature in the packs:

“It’s such a massive honour for Suffolk Libraries to have chosen my book to be given out in their free cook kits this year. It’s going to be a huge boost and a massive help for the younger generation to get into their kitchens this Christmas and cook up some nutritious budget meals.”

The pack also includes other useful information including Suffolk Libraries free Jumpstart activities and community wellbeing services, and how to access local foodbanks.

There are already 250 young people booked into the festive Blank Page workshops but there are some spaces available, so anyone interested is encouraged to book asap!

Watch the video of our festive elves putting together the free home cook kits.