|The lemon sorbino in lemon cup|
http://www.cascadiaweekly.com/cw?/content/articles/resolutions_snails_and_the_spanish_steps/ (also below)
(there’s still room)
Cascadia Weekly FOOD Slow Food RESOLUTIONS, SNAILS AND THE SPANISH STEPS
By Amy Kepferle · Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Although I don’t consider New Year’s resolutions to be akin to blood oaths or pinky swears, I do know that the more people you tell you’re going to do something, the more that “something” becomes real.
That’s why, as a crowd of friends gathered around my dining room table last Saturday—the first day of 2011—to share a post-dip-in-the-icy-waters repast, I made the following announcement: “I resolve to eat less red meat, exercise on a regular basis, have more sex and not be afraid to tell people if they’re pissing me off.”
I guess I figured if I threw enough resolutions out there, one or more of them would stick. And I really hope they do. I’m getting older, and the extra weight I’ve been carrying around for the past decade or so isn’t as easy to ignore as it once was (hence the first two missives).
I was a vegetarian for a handful of years in my late 20s, so I already know how to cut down on carnivorous consumption without sacrificing that elusive element called flavor. But, in an effort to steer clear of “fast food”—and I’m not just talking about the hordes racing into Trader Joe’s from the store’s parking lot on any given day—I’ve been looking into the whole “slow food” movement and wondering how I could apply it to my own life (and those pesky resolutions).
Started in 1986 by Italy’s Carlo Petrini as a visceral reaction to the opening of a McDonald’s near Rome’s Spanish Steps, the movement’s basic tenets focus on “good, clean and fair” food practices—including, but not limited to, a focus on preserving traditional and regional cuisine, protecting heirloom varieties of fruit, vegetables and livestock, lobbying against the use of pesticides and preserving family farms.
From all evidence, eating the slow food way is being aware of every bite you’re putting in your mouth—whether it’s a thrice-processed McNugget or a warm egg culled moments before from beneath the haunches of a plump chicken. It also seems to be about not relying on the frozen food section of your favorite grocery store, but instead seeking out fresh ingredients and cooking and eating them, slowly, in a way that honors their origins (I guess that’s where the movement’s mascot, a snail, comes into play).
To learn more, I plan on attending Gigi Berardi’s presentation on “Slow Food and Nourishing Traditions” Jan. 12 at the Community Food Co-op’s Connection Building. There, she’ll show slides from Slow Food centers in Italy, share opportunities for further studies and provide edible samples via gastronomical goodies provided by Bellingham’s Ciao Thyme.
Meanwhile, I’m going to cut out burgers and mindless snacking (including that super-sized bag of chocolates I got in my Christmas stocking), think twice about taking the stairs versus the elevator, bat my eyelashes more often at my boyfriend and tell that certain someone what I really think of their obnoxious Facebook posts they’re so fond of cranking out. Pinky-swear.
EVENT January 12, 2011 Food for Thought: Slow Food and Nourishing Traditions, Community Food Co-op, Downtown Bellingham, 6:30 p.m. Detailed description: Slow Food and Nourishing Traditions
with Gigi Berardi January 12, 6:30–8:30 pm
Downtown Co-op/register at Co-op
The Slow Food movement links the pleasure of preparing and eating food to environmental sustainability and food community resilience. Come enjoy a workshop featuring slides of Slow Food centers in northern and central Italy, narration by Huxley professor and coordinator of the Resilient Farm Project Gigi Berardi, and fabulous food by Ciao Thyme.