Every weekend, my family head to the Southside Farmers Markets to stock up on our produce for the week.
Here, we can get everything from fruit and veg, meat, seafood, bread, deli items and glorious little artisan products that you just won’t find in a supermarket. For us, it’s a huge part of our rituals around food, and I am endlessly inspired by the quality of the produce and the sheer beauty of it as I unload it all when we get home.
It was at these Markets that I struck up a conversation with a few of the members of Slow Food Canberra, as they stirred massive, big batch pots of soup to raise money for an overseas project. I was struck by the similarites of MamaBake at it’s core and the beliefs of the Slow Food Movement, and invited Anna from the group, to share the Slow Food story and tell us a little about the local Canberra group.
This is the story of Slow Food.
In 1986 McDonalds opened its first outlet in Italy, in Rome near the Spanish Steps. In reaction to fast food’s arrival in Italy, the Slow Food movement was born. People could see what fast food brought with it: industrialised farming systems, globalisation, loss of biodiversity, and the disappearance of local food traditions. Now we can add to that list GMO’s, land grabs, the collapse of fish stocks, water and soil degradation, and widespread obesity and malnutrition.
We fight passive consumerism and food waste.
Slow Food celebrates and supports good, clean, fair food. That is, food that tastes good, is produced in a way that fully respects the environment, human health and animal welfare, and that provides producers with a fair wage. We believe quality food is a right of all people, not just of those with more money.
In all societies, food and culture are inseparable – food lore is shared in families and between friends, sharing food is part of life’s celebrations, food helps build strong communities.
Slow Food is a large international organisation, with over 100,000 members worldwide, in over 130 countries. It organizes some of the world’s major food events – Salone del Gusto and Terra Madre, Cheese, Slow Fish, Euro Gusto, AsiO Gusto – as well as many smaller fairs, to showcase sustainable agriculture and artisan food production and connect producers with aware consumers.
We’re lucky enough here in the ACT to have one of the most active Slow Food Convivia in Australia. We get together to learn about, and enjoy the excellent food and wine in our region. We visit local farms when their produce is in season, meet the farmers, and learn to use and preserve what they grow.
Just to mention a few, we’ve got heritage beef, olives, mushrooms and walnuts in our local area, as well as great wine and cider. Slow Food runs a book club that is currently reading through ‘Nourishing Traditions’ by Sally Fallon, and we run Slow Soup Kitchens at the Southside markets to raise money for both local and overseas projects.
Slow Food Canberra Region have kindly provided a selection of gorgeous recipes for us to enjoy!
From Christophe at ‘Le Tres Bon’ (Bungendore) French Style Christmas Pudding
Slow Food members, Greg and Chris Stuart’s Minto Galloway website features three recipes: Grilled Skirt Steak with Gorgonzola Sauce, Beef Cheeks and Smoked BBQ Brisket. Hungry? Head here.
To find out more about the Slow Food Movement, head to:
Slow Food Canberra
Slow Food International: