This is no endorsement for a slow cooker. You won’t find a recipe for
eight-hour lamb either. This is the polar opposite to fast food. Which for the
record, is food that's sold its soul. The Two Girls happened across Hobart’s Slow Food movement just the other
day and now we’re preoccupied. It maybe our new religion, or we may have found
our soul mates. It’s so hand-in-glove we can’t believe it’s taken us this long
to catch up. Slow Food is an international movement established in the late 80s and dedicated
to growing, preparing and eating food well.
Slow Food movement It’s about defending biodiversity, rediscovering heritage produce and
guarding endangered produce from extinction. It’s the reclaiming and preserving of traditional culture through food. It’s agricultural practice that cares for the earth – as you give to me,
so I give back to you – reinvesting in, and protecting the environment we
depend on for nourishment. It’s food security, sourcing locally, even from just outside your
backdoor, and from small-scale producers.
It’s fair remuneration for farmers and fair prices for the consumer. It’s caring for yourself with time to prepare and eat food that’s good
for you. And it’s a kind of meditation, sitting down to eat a meal, focused on
what we need to sustain ourselves.
Wallaby Rosemary Skewers with Pickled Mustard Seeds
Slow food is everything that is wholesome about food production and
consumption. It is a commitment to community, the environment and food. The Two Girls are converts. There is something tremendous and basic
about preserving the things that matter most to life on earth and Slow Food is
one of those things.
Freshly Baked Sourdough Baguettes with Radishes and Brown Butter
The Slow Food movement is organised around local groups called Convivia.
One of their regular events is the Ark of Taste Dinner. We trundled off to
Drysdale recently for the Hobart Convivium's Slow Food Hobart Annual General
What we discovered was an enclave of industry people, educators, cooks,
and eaters who support sustainable food. They were kind too, embracing us
newbies into their midst, making us feel welcome and sharing stories and
laughter with us over some wonderful food.
The main meal was presented as shared plates, a perfect approach to the
convivia concept: sharing food and eating well. You can check out what we ate – see the menu below.
We drank Tasmanian wines selected by Tim Goddard from Cool
Wines. This Girl’s pick was the 2012 Third Child Riesling from just down the
road in Tee Tree.
Slow Food is not just some middle-class enterprise. The movement is
committed to food education and increasing access to good food. They have
Kitchen Garden Grants and support Growing Cooking Communities. At this year’s
Arc of Taste dinner they donated a mobile commercial oven to the Dunalley
School that was devastated in the January bushfires this year. This oven can be
moved around the school and to events like the Bream Creak Show where students
and the community can be hands-on and part of learning to use and cook good
Are you interested in food that’s good, clean and fair? Here are some ideas: Grow your own
vegetables: there’s upfront costs in getting a garden ready,
that’s for sure. But the pleasure you get from caring for your own produce and
walking outside to harvest it for a meal is fundamental. It connects you to the
earth and the cycle of life. Buy local
product and where possible direct from local suppliers: Of
course sometimes it will be quicker, easier or cheaper to go to Woolies, but
where you can, pick the Tasmanian product. Local green grocers like Hill Street
source a lot of produce from local suppliers. Farmers markets like Salamanca
and the Farm Gate Market, as well as curbside sellers, are also good options.
and plan your weekly menu: Sustaining yourself
deserves some special attention. Planning what you’re going to eat for the week
means you will have the supplies you need to eat properly. You’re less likely
to go the takeaway option if you’ve got food ready to prepare and you’ve already
spent that money.
meals from seasonal produce: Sustaining yourself
means getting a taste for all the food groups. It’s making sure you get your
vegies. It’s not paying out on yourself for the occasional dinner of baked
beans on toast but it is making sure you get the nutrients you need to be
healthy and well. Eating seasonal food is eating what is normal and natural for
our environment and the time of the year. It’s sustainable eating. Construct
your meals around what is available now. Lots of cookbooks take a seasonal
approach to menu planning and there are plenty of ideas on the internet. Eat at the
table: Eating around the television puts food, and
nourishment, in second place. Once you’ve sourced and prepared your meal, pay
homage to it and you, by taking the time to eat it, respectfully.