Friday, 21 April 2017

Meet the Team: Packer

In this next instalment of "Meet the Team", we introduce our longest-serving packer, Lee! Find out what his favourite fruit is, and why he has stayed with us for so long!

What is your job title?

Supervisor/packer

What are your daily tasks?

Mainly sure all orders are packed correctly and efficiently, and other tasks like cleaning.

How long have you been with FFTO?

10 years!

What do you like about working here?

It's a laugh. Where the Dispatch Unit is quite small you get to know your workmates a lot quicker, and it makes it more enjoyable to work.

What's your favourite fruit? 

Strawberries. I love the melt in the mouth taste and how sweet they are.

What's your favourite vegetable?

I like broccoli. It's nice with a bit of gravy over it and has a nice taste.

If you were an animal, what you would you be?

Lion. I've got a heart like one! Not a lot really bothers me!


Got any questions for our packers? Let us know @office_fruit! 

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Chocolate & Raspberry Tart

 If you're looking for an easy recipe to feed all those chocolate-lovers in your life over the Easter period, look no further! This chocolate and raspberry tart will be just what everybody desires! 

Serves: 10
Takes: 1 hour 10 minutes, plus chilling
Difficulty level: Medium

Ingredients
  • 200g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 25g cocoa powder
  • 25g icing sugar
  • 175g cold butter
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 250g fresh raspberries
For the chocolate filling:
  • 500ml double cream
  • 75g golden caster sugar
  • 300g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
  • 2 large eggs
 Method
  1.  To make the pastry, sift the flour, cocoa powder and icing sugar into the bowl of a food processor.
  2. Cube and add the butter and a pink of sea salt, then pulse until it resembles breadcrumbs.
  3. Add the egg yolk, vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons of cold water and pulse again, until the dough comes together.
  4. Tip out onto a floured surface and bring it together with your hands. Wrap it in clingfilm and chill for 20  minutes
  5. Preheat the over to 200 degrees Celsius/gas mark 6, and insert a baking tray to warm up.
  6. On a flour-dusted surface, roll out the pastry into a 25cm circle to the thickness of a pound coin.
  7. Using your rolling pin, lift the pastry and drape it over a 23cm loose-bottoms tart tin. Ease it into place, pushing the pastry right into the corners.
  8. Roll your rolling pin over the top of the tin to cut off any overhang, prick the base all over with a form, and return to the fridge to chill for 20 minutes.
  9. Take the tin out of the fridge and line it with greaseproof paper, then fill with baking beans or rice.
  10. Bake it in the over on the baking sheet for 15 minutes, then remove the paper and beans and return it to the oven for 5 minutes, until golden. Set aside to cool.
  11. meanwhile, make the filling. Pop the cream and caster sugar in a pan, place it over a medium heat and bring it to the boil.
  12. Break the chocolate into a bowl, pour over the hot cream and stir until all the chocolate has been melted.
  13. beat the eggs, then stir them into the mixture.
  14. Scatter the raspberries into the cooled tart case, then pour over the chocolate filling.
  15. Return to the oven for 20 minutes, or until the filling is almost set but still has a little wobble in the centre.
  16. Leave on a cooling rack to cool completely, then ease the tart out of its tin, slice and serve.
Adapted from http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/chocolate-recipes/ultimate-chocolate-raspberry-tart/
Have you made this chocolate & raspberry tart? Let us know how it goes office_fruit



Friday, 7 April 2017

How To Be Persuasive

Being persuasive is a useful skill that takes us through not only our work life, but also our everyday life! Whether it's persuading your boss for a pay rise, or asking your friend to give you a lift at 2am, a few persuasive techniques will make it all the easier to sway people to your way of thinking. If you need help being more persuasive, read on!

Appear confident
Whether you feel it or not, if you appear confident, you are more likely to persuade the other person that your point of view is right. You will appear more authoritative, which people respond to positively. Remember, fake it until you make it!
 
Know what you're talking about
People will not be persuaded unless you can prepare to answer the "why" question. Do all your research around the topic, and make sure you know the facts!

Prepare for arguments against you
If it's a tough topic, the other person may well have a good reason why they don't think the way you do about that subject. Make sure you think about what their objections to the decision may be, and prepare counter-arguments that make your point difficult to say "no" to!

Stay calm
No one likes giving in to an angry or emotional person, especially in a workplace environment. Even if you think it's not going your way, make sure to take a few deep breaths, and to talk slowly. This will help your point come across stronger.

Read your audience
Who are you talking to? If you are talking to your boss, informal language isn't going to cut it. Are you talking to your family? Then formal language is going to sound very odd! Monitor your language to fully connect with the person you are talking to.

Gauge their reaction
Look at how the person is reaction to what you're saying. If they look angry, think about toning down your language, and go softer on the subject. If they look like they're agreeing, you have some room to press home the point!

Picking your time
No one likes to be approached about a pay rise when they are about to go into a big meeting. Make sure you pick a good time for the other person, as they are the one you want to help you! Ask if it's a good time to talk, and if not, ask to arrange a time that works for them. Being flexible will help you seem more approachable, so when the time comes, they are more willing to talk to you!




What are your top ways of persuading people? Let us know @office_fruit

Friday, 31 March 2017

Profile On: Passion Fruit

 Following on from our last post in our Profile On series, this week we take a look at the passion fruit, a versatile fruit which has grown in popularity.

What is it? 
The passion fruit is a nutritious fruit, rich in antioxidants and vitamins. This tropical fruit is considered a type of berry. It is the fruit of the passiflora vine, which is a type of passion flower.

What does it look like?
It is small,with a  tough outer rind, and a juicy, seed-filled centre. There are several types; the most common are purple (passiflora edulis) and yellow (passiflora flavicarpa).

Where's it from?
Although it is a tropical fruit, some varieties can survive in sub-tropical climate. It is grown all over the world, and crops can be found in South and North America, Asia, Europe and Australia.

How do I eat it?
You need to slice or rip open the rind to expose the flesh and seeds. The passion fruit can be eaten raw, and the seeds are edible. The white film separating the rind from the flesh is edible but is bitter so most people leave that part! This fruit is mostly used in drinks, desserts, on salads and in yoghurts.

What does it taste like?
It is very tart, and there is a large smell component, as it has a very strong and characteristic perfume.

What are the health benefits?
It contains iron alongside vitamin c, which is hugely beneficial as vitamin c helps with iron absorption. It also has lots of antioxidants, and that all important dietary fibre.



Do you like passion fruit? Let us know @office_fruit

Friday, 24 March 2017

Last Minute Mother's Day Gift Ideas

It's Mother's Day this Sunday (that's the 26th March!!), and some of us leave these things to the last minute....if that's you, here are some ideas for last minute Mothers' Day presents that your mum will love!

Molton Brown Trio Handcream Set - House of Fraser - £25
Home Collection Fresh Linen Votive & Candle set - Debenhams - £15


Champagne Cinema Evening for 2 - Virgin Experience Days - £36.25

Medium Sewing Box - Hobbycraft - £18



What did you get for Mother's Day? Let us know @office_fruit!

Friday, 17 March 2017

Shamrock Juice

Happy St Patrick's Day fruity people!! If you're looking for a cocktail recipe to blow your socks off, you've come to the right place. Read on to find out more about this potent blue drink...

You'll need:
  • 1/2 ounces gin 
  • 1/2 ounches white tequila
  • 1/2 ounces light rum
  • 1/2 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce vodka
  • 1 ounce Blue Curacao
  • 4 ounches freshly squeezed orange juice
  • An orange slice or cherries (for garnish)
  • A glass or pitcher

Pour in all the spirits, and top with orange juice. Garnish with an orange slice or cherries. And done!



Adapted from: https://mixthatdrink.com/shamrock-juice/


What are you doing for St Patrick's Day? Let us know @office_fruit

Friday, 10 March 2017

Meet The Team: Our General Manager!

This week we're starting a brand new blog series, where you get to meet the Fruit For The Office team! Find out more about the people behind your regular fruit deliveries...This week we meet Helen!

 What do you do every day at work?
A bit of everything … recruitment, health & safety assessments and paperwork, liaise with the overnight dispatch unit team on operations and customer feedback, assist team with customers feedback or queries, liaise with Directors on business needs, team appraisals, oversee general operations … and make the tea!

How long have you been with FFTO?
Almost 2 years!

What is your go-to breakfast?
I always start my day with a supplement shake, made with soya milk, which gives me all the nutrients, vitamins and energy that I need to start my day. I truly believe breakfast to be the most important meal of the day – I often add a few berries to mix the flavours up too!

What do you do as soon as you get into work? 
Log onto my pc and then put the kettle on!
 
Lunch at your desk, or lunch out?
Either, or! If the sun is shining, I like to go out for a quick walk – the fresh air gives me a boost for the afternoon.  

What's your favourite fruit?
Either a perfectly ripe banana or raspberries!


 
Tea all day, or tea never?
Berry tea all day!

Tell us one thing in the office knows about you? (yet!)
Back in 2008, I got through to the 3rd stage in The Apprentice application process! (a lucky escape, I think!!)
 
What is your party trick?
… I don’t have one (other than balancing 2 x kids, work & a house renovation?!)

If you were an animal, what animal would you be and why?
Such a difficult question!! … Maybe a tiger? They are protective of their young, can be playful, but majestic and have a fierce side when needed!

Do you have any other questions for Helen? Let us know @office_fruit

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