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Recipe: Warming winter stew

This is a really flavoursome winter warmer that can just be popped in a saucepan and left to simmer on the hob. Use any vegetables you fancy, but chop them chunky so that they keep their shape. You can  omit or swap the meat as you like.


Beef rump steak, diced

3 carrots, peeled and chopped

1 large potato, peeled and chopped

1 swede, peeled and chopped

1 large parsnip, chopped

2 medium onions, chopped

2 beef OXO cubes

Salt and pepper to taste


Firstly, pour a tablespoon or so of oil into a large saucepan with a lid and fry the beef and onions until the onion is translucent and the beef is browned.» >

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To eat or not to eat?

One of the biggest controversies in health is whether it is best to eat or fast before workouts. Some experts support exercising on an empty stomach, while others argue that we should always eat something before working out. But who’s right?

Those in favour of working out on an empty stomach claim that this method is most beneficial for people who want to lose weight. Firstly, eating one meal fewer in the day might mean that we consume less calories overall.» >

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Think takeaways can’t be healthy? Think again

Takeaways are convenient, quick and delicious, but the only problem is that they are usually unhealthy as they can be packed with salt, sugar, saturated fat and calories. However, with just a few tips and better choices you don’t have to feel so guilty about chowing down on your favourite takeaway meal.

If an Indian takeaway is your thing, then you should choose dishes such as Tikka (without the creamy masala) for a full flavoured, yet delicious alternative to a curry with lots of sauce.» >

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Getting Mexi-crazy with Doritos

Having been bought a copious amount of lightly salted Doritos by my mother, I was faced with the dilemma of having to consume them in different ways so as not to develop a life-long hatred for them. One of the best moments I have had with these delicacies is my Dorito-nacho epiphany during a tedious essay writing session. Perfect for an after exam Mexi-party and uses up the vegetables your mother makes you buy.» >

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Student budget bites

Eating well doesn’t have to mean spending your entire student loan in the supermarket – try out these super budget recipes to make your money go further in the kitchen. All prices have been calculated from the Asda website at the time of publishing, but may be subject to change.


Spanish Omelette

(serves 2)


One large potato or two medium ones (approx. 20p)

6 eggs (Asda Smartprice, 87p)

One onion (approx.» >

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Restaurant Review: Pau Brasil

Located a bit out of town and a comfortable walk for Reading campus is Pau Brasil on 89 Mount Pleasant. Downstairs is the South American shop and upstairs is the coffee/restaurant. Now, we got a bit overwhelmed and decided to pretty much eat whatever they had to offer! We started with passion fruit juice (recommended by the waitress) and a cheese ball for starters. The cheese ball was crisp on the outside and cheesey gooey on the inside.» >

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Supermarket guide for hungry freshers


Doing the weekly shop and feeding yourself can seem like a daunting task when you first arrive at uni.

Here at Spark* we have put together a little guide of the local supermarkets because in the first week, every little helps.

Where they are, when they are open and whether they will go further so you don’t have to by delivering straight to halls – all of your questions will be answered here.» >

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