What Is Slow Food > Slow Food USA Blog
Posted on Fri, October 14, 2011 by Slow Food USA
The Cultiva Youth Project and Slow Food Boulder have teamed up with Anolon Cookware to provide top-notch cooking education and leadership opportunities in North Boulder. Here, teens get to cook and eat together, as well as learn from their peers. And, of course, brand new cookware doesn’t hurt!
Submitted by Ellie Goldberg of Growing Gardens’ Cultiva Youth Project
Here at Growing Gardens’ Cultiva Youth Project we are so thankful for our ongoing partnership with Slow Food Boulder! Each spring and summer, Cultiva youth participate in Slow Food cooking classes with local chefs, preparing meals at our garden in north Boulder, at the market, and in a downtown church kitchen. Slow Food recruits the chefs, purchases the ingredients, and helps staff the class. This time around, Anolon Cookware has given us the pots and pans.
The chefs choose recipes that use the vegetables the Cultiva youth grow at our organic market garden. Cultiva teens come from all walks of life; participants come from all socio-economic levels and represent a diverse cross section of Boulder County youth in all ways. Many of the teens have never prepared an entire meal from scratch, especially using vegetables they grew and under the guidance of a professional chef. Slow Food cooking classes are definitely a highlight of working at Cultiva; the teens love working together in the kitchen, learning new techniques and recipes from a pro, and above all, sitting together and enjoying a tasty home-cooked meal. To see a documentary about our Cultiva summer program, click here!
Thanks to Anolon’s generous donation of top-notch cooking supplies, we were also able to offer 6 youth-led cooking classes in the garden. The teens harvested vegetables and prepared garlic scape pesto, kale chips, and zucchini pancakes. The youth loved cooking using the shiny new tools!
But that’s not all we’ve been up to! This season, we had the opportunity to visit Shamane’s Bake Shoppe and bake with Shamane herself, prepare pizzas at the market with Antonio Laudisio, make kale tacos with Rayme and Serena on the Comida taco truck, and prepare a meal at the church with Tim Payne of Terroir. We’re excited to keep on growing.
Posted on Mon, August 15, 2011 by Intern
Participants of the Willamette Food and Farm Coalition’s Farm to School project make frequent trips to local farms to learn and see first hand where their food comes from.
by intern Sasha Hippard
The Willamette Food and Farm Coalition’s Farm to School project just finished their spring season with great success! Through lessons both on the farm and in the kitchen, students left with an increased knowledge of where their food comes from, how to prepare it, and the benefits of eating local and healthy ingredients.
The Willamette Food and Farm Coalition is a community based non-profit based in Lane County, Oregon. They represent a diverse group of stakeholders in the local food systems, from farmers and producers to restaurateurs and consumers. The Farm to School project is aimed at educating Lane County kids about where their food comes from and working to incorporate locally grown produce into the meals served in schools.
As participants of the Farm to School project, students make frequent trips to local farms to learn and see first hand where their food comes from. However, thanks to the recent Anolon donation which included veggie peelers, cooking pots and pans, measuring cups, spoons, and spatulas, students can take this experience one step further. Not only can students see where their food comes from, but learn how to use it as well. From the farms, fresh fruits and veggies are harvested, and eggs gathered. Once in the classroom, students get busy cooking in small groups. By cooking up a snack with the food they’ve harvested themselves, students not only learn valuable lessons on food production and farming, but also tasty ways to use the ingredients they just saw produced.
With help from adult volunteers, kids have whipped up corn cakes with fresh strawberries, green salad with veggies and home-made ranch dressing, and scrambled eggs with sautéed greens. In the fall, the groups will return to the farms to harvest. Plans are being made to extend the repertoire of recipes further and make things like fresh salsa, potatoes with leeks and broccoli, and veggie soup with noodles. Yum.
Having good cooking supplies makes cooking fun and easy and connects kids to the source of their food to inspire healthy eating habits. The next master chef or revolutionary organic farmer just might come from this group of inspired (and full) kids!
Posted on Thu, July 28, 2011 by Intern
The second in a series of slow food recipes and the stories that inspired them. This week young cooks take the spotlight.
by intern Kelsey Wickel
This week’s featured Table Talk contest category is “Young Cook,” where cooks under 25 were encouraged to submit their personal recipes. These young chefs share a common value in creating good food inspired by taste tradition and local flavor and sharing it with friends and family.
Rachel Nichols’ first place-winning pickled heirloom tomato recipe comes from her time working as a Youth Educator in Chester County Pennsylvania CSAs. In her first week of work, the Assistant Director of the Program and local farmer handed her an heirloom tomato seedling. Originally, she claims, “I had no idea what to do with the thing,” but after some experimentation making sauces, salads, and pickles, Rachel settled on her favorite recipe for pickled heirloom tomatoes. “This is the pickled tomato recipe I experimented with after growing my first garden. The heirloom tomatoes I inherited from a young organic farmer were a life changing experience, as I am now working as a full-time cook and nutrition educator.”
2nd and 3rd place winners after the jump
Posted on Mon, June 20, 2011 by Intern
The recent donation of cookware from Anolon to Slow Food Skagit Salish Sea means the families of Lincoln Elementary can keep on cookin’!
by Sasha Hippard, SFUSA intern
The recent donation of cookware from Anolon to Slow Food Skagit Salish Sea means the families of Lincoln Elementary can keep on cookin’!
The Lincoln Elementary Family Cooking Classes, started in 2009 by the Slow Food Skagit chapter in Washington state has been providing 1st through 6th graders and their extended families with inspiring opportunities to make and enjoy home-cooked meals together. Since the program’s establishment, Slow Food Skagit has served 30-40 students and families annually, teaching approximately four cooking sessions a year. These fun, educational, hands-on sessions incorporate seasonal produce from Lincoln Elementary own school garden whenever possible and teaches students and parents alike how to make their food good, clean, and fair.
Along with high quality cooking pans of a variety of types, Anolon’s donation also included cookie sheets and a number of different kitchen tools like spatulas and garlic presses. This new cookware has changed what volunteers have been able to cook with the students and families at Lincoln Elementary.
Cooking classes like the ones at Lincoln Elementary are a great way to not only bring families together, but promote healthy and responsible eating habits. It’s so much easier to incorporate simple, yet powerful change into your everyday life when the whole family gets on board and has fun while doing it!
There are endless dishes to try that are healthy, delicious, and responsible, but only if you know where and how to look for the recipes and inspiration. The addition of the Anolon supplies means that the Lincoln Elementary cooking classes don’t have to be limited to a few simply dishes. The sky’s the limit for these families and they are free to explore, experiment and sample all kinds of healthy and delicious meals.
Posted on Fri, June 17, 2011 by Slow Food USA
It’s called the food movement, but what does that really mean? Students and campus dining workers come together to show us that it’s about building community and making change.
by Hnin Hnin and Kyle Schafer
When Slow Food on Campus and UNITE HERE’s Stir It Up Campaign celebrated National Food Month together with Eat-Ins—part potluck, part protest—across the country, it signaled a small but inspiring convergence of two worlds: sustainable food & sustainable jobs.
Over 300 people participated in 6 Eat-Ins hosted by students and local union members at Northwestern, Wesleyan, and Harvard and Yale (jointly) and by SFOC chapters at Hamilton, Vassar, and Clemson. While each Eat-In was unique, they all shared the goal of building community to create change for good food and food workers—including everyone from the farmers and farmworkers who produce the food to the campus dining workers who serve it up.
It’s not a new idea, but it is just now starting to grab the attention of the on-campus food movement: the fight for sustainable food is tied to the struggle for sustainable jobs. Processed food requires less skill to prepare. Lower skills requirements means lower wages for food workers. So when food preparation consists of switching knives for scissors to open bags of processed food, we have to ask ourselves: what’s the difference between skimping on fair wages and benefits and skimping on fresh, healthy food? By sharing stories over a meal, students and dining workers get a chance to hear how the same broken food system impacts one another on both sides of the counter. They get inspired to change campus food together.
Posted on Mon, May 02, 2011 by Intern
Slow Food Vermont chapter leader Mara Welton and her husband Spencer are spearheading a new sustainable farming certificate program at University of Vermont.
by Grace Moore
Vermont’s exciting new Sustainable Farming Certificate program is linking experienced farmers with promising apprentices and practical experience to train much-needed new farmers. Slow Food Vermont leader Mara Welton and her husband Spencer are helping to spearhead this new program by lending their expertise.
Just over ten years ago, Mara and Spencer got their first taste of farm life working on a Boulder, Colorado flower and herb farm. Fast forward a few years, and you’ll find the couple setting up hoop-houses and spinning greens on the aptly named Half Pint Farm, a 2 acre specialty and baby vegetable farm located in Burlington, Vermont’s Intervale.
As the Weltons enter their ninth growing season, they’re bringing their expertise and experience to the table in the new partnership with University of Vermont’s Sustainable Farming certificate program.
Posted on Mon, April 18, 2011 by Jerusha Klemperer
After months of planning and planting, a fleet of 25 Truck Farmers across the country are about to take to the road. One snag! Not enough trucks.
by Hnin Hnin
Some farmers have thousands of acres of land. Some farmers have a few. Truck Farmers have a pile of dirt in the back of a pickup truck. Truck Farm is a simple concept with a big impact. It’s a mini-mobile farm, an edible exhibit, and the focus of a documentary coming out this winter. What exactly can you do with a 4x8 bed of soil and seeds on wheels? Add an ambitious farmer with the passion to teach kids about growing and eating healthy food, and you’ve got one of the coolest urban agriculture projects around. That’s why Slow Food USA has partnered up with Truck Farm to recruit some of the freshest new urban farmers in town.
After months of planning and planting, a fleet of 25 Truck Farmers across the country are about to take to the road, popping up at schools, camps, street fairs, outdoor concerts, and anywhere else large groups of youth congregate. They’re revved up and ready to go…
BUT there’s one snag—7 of the 25 farmers don’t have a truck! Meet Cate Brennan, a student and leader of Slow Food University of Rhode Island. With your help, she and her group can become some of the youngest Truck Farmers on the fleet.
Posted on Mon, April 11, 2011 by Slow Food USA
When local chef Nathalie Dupree suggested Slow Food Charleston enter the Let’s Move for Healthy Kids Contest, they had no idea it would be a hit; they’re now one of fifteen semifinalists across the country!
When local chef Nathalie Dupree suggested Slow Food Charleston enter the Let’s Move! Recipes for Healthy Kids Contest, they had no idea it would be a hit; they’re now one of fifteen semifinalists across the country! Partnering with local school food service directors, chefs, local culinary schools representatives, and MUSC Lean Team! advocates, the team got to work. The group worked quickly to bring together a team of students from Burke Middle/High School, a Title One school. Together they collaborated with students to create a kid-approved Southern-style soup that met strict nutritional guidelines. They call it Confetti Soup.
The Recipes for Healthy Kids project marks the beginning of a larger Chefs in Schools initiative developed by Slow Food Charleston. As part of the new initiative, the chapter hopes to improve the quality of food in schools, and with it, create a new generation of healthy eaters. Chefs in Schools will provide ‘taste education’ to students by working directly with area chefs to make great tasting healthy food and provide food service personnel with the tools necessary to bring fresh, healthy meals to students by funding classes at nearby culinary schools. The pilot program is set to begin this summer in two counties.
In the meantime, Burke Middle/High School and Slow Food Charleston are enjoying their semifinalist status, and looking forward to the next stages of the competition. This spring a team of USDA judges will visit the school to try out the Confetti Soup and determine whether or not the group will move on to the final round. You can show your support by voting for the group’s Confetti Soup recipe as the People’s Choice. Simply visit this site (click here) between now and May 15th to cast your vote!
The winning team is pictured above (left to right):
Ms. Carol Rivers (Burke Culinary Arts Teacher)
Jennifer Moore (MUSC Lean Team and Slow Food Charleston)
Auja Ravanel (Burke Middle School student)
Keshawn Jones (Burke Middle School student)
Craig Deihl (Executive Chef- Cypress Restaurant)
Quantifah Lockwood (Burke High School student)
Tyler Manigault (Burke High School student)
Erin Boudolf (CCSD School Nutrition Services Dietician)
(not pictured-Coleen Martin- MUSC Lean Team)
Posted on Thu, April 07, 2011 by Slow Food USA
Every Sunday night at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, one might find students gathered for a shared meal of any type of theme or global cuisine.
by Claire Brandow
Every Sunday night at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, one might find students gathered for a shared meal of any type of theme or global cuisine. Dinner could be Vietnamese banh mi, a feast of Indian aloo mater and kheer, or an impressive spread of ramp pesto and sorrel soup for a local foods dinner. Though the food and atmosphere change weekly, the objective stays the same: with each of these Family Dinner Nights, the members of Slow Food University of Wisconsin put the philosophy of Slow Food into action. Every meal is a chance to educate and promote the value of good, clean, and fair food in a convivial atmosphere.
Slow Food University of Wisconsin-Madison is particularly active in two venues: improving the campus food system and campaigning to raise awareness about food and agriculture issues. The Family Dinner Nights are at the core of SFUW’s work. Each night includes a cooking lesson followed by a communal dinner. SFUW recently received a gift of pots, pans, and kitchen gadgets from Anolon Cookware as part of the company’s “Creating a Delicious Future” initiative. Everything from the cooking to cleaning is communal: not only is the food prepared and enjoyed together, five people each week sign up to help with cleaning in exchange for a free meal.
The two-year tradition of Family Dinner Night now attracts as many as 100 students each week. SFUW uses each night to educate on a different topic, whether it is a cultural lesson on the country of that meal’s origins or a lecture on the food movement and food sovereignty. Dinners also often serve to benefit local family farms and promote local producers and vendors.
SFUW co-leader Danny Spitzberg insists newcomers should always feel welcome. “We don’t bite until dinner is ready! We’re an evolving community. We always welcome anyone interested in eating good food, meeting new people, and having good old fashioned fun.”
Posted on Thu, March 03, 2011 by Slow Food USA
President Josh Viertel joined over 900 people for a march to demand that Stop & Shop and its parent company Ahold do their part improve wages and working conditions for farm workers in the tomato fields of Immokalee, Florida.
by Slow Food USA President Josh Viertel
Yesterday I joined over 900 friends for a two-mile march in the snow through Boston. We were there to demand that Stop & Shop and its parent company Ahold do their part improve wages and working conditions for farm workers in the tomato fields of Immokalee, Florida. The march was organized by the Coalition of Immokalee Workers with support from allies, including the Student/Farm Workers Alliance.
The CIW and its allies are asking major supermarkets to sign on to the same agreement that fast food companies and college food service companies have signed through their Campaign for Fair Food. The CIW has posted a photojournal from the march here and a video here.
Below is a copy of the remarks I made at the opening rally:
I am here today because the food movement cannot be separate from the farm workers movement. We are one.
Imagine that today two babies will be born. One in Tarrytown, NY. One in Zacatecas, Mexico. On their first day, they will be the same. They will be all possibility. Like twins.
But over the next eighteen years, if conditions continue as they are, opportunity will blossom for one, and whither for another. In eighteen years, one may be standing here in Boston, finishing his first year in college, while the other stands 1,500 miles to the south, paid poverty wages to pick tomatoes in the fields of Immokalee, Florida.
Unseen, unknown to each other, one young man will nourish the other, picking the oranges that go into the juice he drinks for breakfast, and the tomatoes he buys in the supermarket. Oranges and tomatoes tainted, not just with chemicals, but tainted with the suffering of an unknown twin.
Gerardo Reyes was born in Zacatecas, Mexico. [Gerardo is a farm worker, an organizer with the CIW, and a friend.] I grew up in Tarrytown, NY. We are the same age.
This post originally appeared on The Atlantic Food Channel. To read the rest of it, please click here.
Slow Food International also runs a publishing company, Slow Food Editore, which specializes in tourism, food and wine. The library now contains about 40 titles and houses Slow, the award-winning quarterly herald of taste and culture, available in five languages: Italian, English, French, German and Spanish.