Meet Toronto’s 2016 Terra Madre Delegates

Editor
July 12, 2016

Slow Food Toronto is pleased to be sending two delegates to the 2016 Terra Madre gathering in Turin, Italy this September. Terra Madre is an international gathering that brings together thousands of farmers and food producers from 150 countries in Turin to celebrate and learn about good, clean and fair food, as well as slow food movements happening around the world. The event features presentations, networking opportunities, a food fair and more. Slow Food Canada chose the Canadian delegates from across Canada.

Two delegates were chosen from Toronto: Nicole Pisarenko and Mina Bani. Slow Food Toronto is very happy to send these two individuals off to Italy, and we hope that what they learn and experience at this important international gathering will have a positive impact on their lives and careers. Here are Nicole’s and Mani’s bios, as well as whatt they hope to learn at the 2016 Terra Madre Salone del Gusto.

nicole-terra-madreNicole Pisarenko: My name is Nicole Pisarenko and I am a recent graduate of the George Brown College Italian Post Graduate Culinary Arts program. This program is designed for the students to learn everything involving Italian cuisine and then do a three-and-a-half-month Externship in a restaurant that is usually a Michelin -Star level. There I had my eyes opened to how easy it is to get good food. They don’t even have to think twice about checking labels and wondering what is inside their food or where it came from. Local, organic, heirloom, clean, good and fair: Italy truly does have the best food culture in the world. They preserve their heritage along with their species of food and traditional ways of farming/ processing. Living in Canada most of my life, it made me sad that we too, a country with more land and a smaller population then Italy, battle food sovereignty and cannot get it together with our food system!  With abundances of natural resources and native foods that grow on our land, most of us wouldn’t even be able to name half, not to mention know how to cook it. I strongly believe that changes are on their way in the new world, but we must fight for it. How do we do that? We inform ourselves and others. I would like to try and create a system in our schools, where children learn valuable life skills beginning with food. How to grow their own food, how to cook and even raise awareness about what it means to have good quality food. It begins with the children and ends with them too. This is why Terra Madre is exciting to me. I am a chef and a restaurant manager who is craving change in this wonderful country of ours. Terra Madre can help me lead the way.

Mina Bani: My name is Mina and this is my first year as a member of Slow Food Canada. I studied literature and Cultural studies in University, and after writing my thesis about the role of food in culture, I decided I needed some practical experience to supplement my theoretical notions about food. Two years of culinary school, several years cooking in kitchens in Toronto, and a year cooking in Italy have brought me to this point today. My passion for the preparation of food and for feeding people is a major creative force in my life; one which has brought me to some of the most distinguished kitchens in Canada and Italy. Yet my understanding of the problematic state of our food systems informs my desire to do more than prepare exciting plates of food in restaurants. Over the last year I have read extensively to educate myself on responsible approaches to food in the urban landscape and hope to bring my unique combination of skills and insights to a place where they can help achieve collective goals of food security and justice in the future. Knowing that Terra Madre is one of the largest gathering of like-minded people who share many of my passions and concerns, I am thrilled to be representing Canada in 2016, and to meet and network with the amazing food growers and workers from around the world. My writing can be found at an online project I have recently launched at thefilling.org, and I currently live, cook, and write in Toronto.

You can also read a write up Mina wrote about a recent Slow Fish event (hosted by Slow Food Toronto) here.

 

Learning About Local and Global Fishing at The Stop

Thank you to all who joined Slow Food Toronto for the Slow Fish event on Saturday, June 18th. We had wonderful talks from Andrew Akiwenzie of Akiwenzie’s Fish & More and Dan Donovan of Hooked Inc. It was interesting to learn about how fishing has changed in the Georgian Bay area and how certain pressures – governance, environmental, and economic – are problematic for the waters and their entire ecosystems. Andrew spoke specifically about the gradual reduction of the Whitefish over the years and how the introduction of non-native species has caused major disruptions to the balance of the ecosystem. He also noted how technologies like GPSs and smartphones are changing how youth interact with the waters. Dan spoke about his efforts with Slow Fish Canada / Slow Fish International to push for fair fishing in water bodies across North America and ensure that the rights of small fishers and fisheries are protected. Like Andrew, he also spoke about the privatization of fishing and the effects this is having on biodiversity.

To top it off, we had three different dishes prepared by local chefs. See the mouth-watering pictures below. Thank you to all who made this event a success! See you soon!

Photos by Edmund Rek, all rights reserved.

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Paul DeCampo started the event off by talking about Slow Food and the importance of good, clean & fair food.
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Andrew Akiwenzie spoke next and talked about his life as a traditional fisherman in the Georgian Bay area. Here he talks about how it’s hard on the body over time, even if it is a rewarding profession!

Continue reading Learning About Local and Global Fishing at The Stop

Slow Fish Taste and Talk

slow-food-toronto-mary-l-walesJoin Slow Food Toronto, Hooked Inc. and Akiwenzie’s Fish & More for a Slow Fish Taste and Talk on Saturday, June 18th, 2016!

At this event, the Akiwenzie family, the founders of Akiwenzie’s Fish & More, along with Dan Donovan, the founder of Hooked Inc., will speak about what they do — and why!! They’s also talk about sustainable fishing in general, and guests will be able to enjoy carefully-prepared dishes made with sustainable, wild-caught Ontario fish (procured from Akiwenzies).  The dishes will be made by Chris Schroer of The Cure, Kyle Rindinella of Pizzeria Libretto and Justin Cournoyer of Actinolite.

Time: 2:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. (right after the market)

Costs: $25 per person / $20 for Slow Food Members. ($5 from each ticket will be donated to The Stop).

 

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Terroni + Slow Food: March 7th, 2016

Editor
February 16, 2016

Terroni-slow-food-torontoMonday, March 7th at 6:30pm* we will be hosting a very special dinner in our new space “Sala da Pranzo”, 57 Adelaide St. East.

Historically, when food was scarce, people learned how to stretch and make the most of what they had. Pane Avanzato literally means ‘leftover bread’ and there are countless recipes that have come from the habit of reusing bread to make a second meal.

In collaboration and in support of Slow Food, Terroni will be serving a four course dinner with 3oz wine pairings to highlight some of our favourite traditional sustainable meals.

The food and wine selections will be generously provided by many of our local partners who will, over the course of the evening, share some of their stories and philosophies tied into sustainability and variety which can often seem like a challenge in the winter months. Honoured guest speakers: Slow Food Toronto, 100K, Tawse Winery, Fogo Island’s Tony Cobb & Janice Thomson, Cumbrae’s Stephen Alexander, Terroni Executive Chef Giovanna Alonzi, and Master of Ceremonies Francesco Laudini.

This not-for-profit event promises to be an opportunity to learn more about Slow Food and why the work of our speakers is so important to our community.

This will be a night to remember, we are looking forward to sharing it with you!

VIEW THE MENU HERE.

PURCHASE TICKETS HERE.

Terra Madre Day @ The Hogtown Cure

Editor
November 28, 2015

the-cure-slow-food-torontoJoin the Toronto Slow Food Convivium in a pot-luck dinner to celebrate Terra Madre Day.  All are welcome, please bring your favourite locally-sourced dish.

A great opportunity to mingle and meet the new organising committee members, and plan for 2016.

When?: December 7th, 2015, 6:30  – 9 PM

Where?: The Hogtown Cure, 1484 Dundas Street West, Toronto, ON

Ontario craft beer and VQA wine available

Plates and cutlery provided! Please label your dish with ingredients 🙂

Please RSVP HERE.

In 2009 the very first Terra Madre Day was organized by Slow Food and saw more than 1,000 events take place across 120 countries — one of the largest collective occasions celebrating food diversity and the right to good, clean and fair food ever achieved on a global scale.

Terra Madre Day (December 10th, 2015) is an opportunity for the entire Slow Food network to celebrate local food and promote sustainable production and consumption to their communities and local decision makers. Thousands of actions in all corners of the world highlight the united Slow Food vision and the diversity we are striving to maintain.

Terra Madre Day @ ChocoSol

Editor
November 24, 2015

Join ChocoSol and Slow Food Toronto on Terra Madre Day to celebrate and taste-test the simple, elegant, yet important tortilla and nacho! Terra Madre Day is a time to envision a global alternative food model that is rooted in local economies and is imbued with a respect for the environment and traditional knowledge.

When: December 10th, 6 – 10 PM

Where: ChocoSol, 1131 Saint Clair Avenue West (Near Dufferin and St Clair, beside the Ontario School of Ballet)

What exactly?: Sample  local  and non-local tortillas from around Toronto, and join the convivial conversation about maize culture in Ontario and the world. Be a part of the research! Participants will taste-test a range of tortilla and nacho products available from the Toronto area and you will be the judge of the best taste and flavour.

The first round will be a blind test-taste, as participants use their senses to assess the quality of each product. In the second phase of the taste-test, participants will learn about the  the story of the product and its ingredients. ChocoSol believes that food tastes best when it comes from our region.

Following the tasting there will be two presentations: first, Slow Food Toronto will discuss their philosophy of ‘good, clean, fair’ food in relation to the tortilla and Terra Madre Day; second, ChocoSol’s founder Michael Sacco will reveal the simple elegance of the local and organic tortilla, and the work of ChocoSol’s Tortilla Project. There will also be time to meet local maize farmers and producers, and share ideas for a more equitable and just food system.

Tickets available HERE. Tickets are $10 for the general public, and by donation for Slow Food Toronto members.

Picnic Pot-Luck for Pamela

Editor
June 4, 2015

Spamela-slow-food-torontolow Food Toronto will be hosting a Picnic Potluck to celebrate the late Pamela Cuthbert, active member of the Slow Food community and amazing woman, near Trinity Bellwoods Park during their weekly Farmers’ Market.

When: Tuesday June 16th, 6-9pm during the Farmers’ Market

Where: 257 Shaw Street inside the Byzantine Slovak Cathedral near Trinity Bellwoods Park

Tickets: RSVP here – Slow Food Members $5; Public $10; Kids FREE

Good to Know: Bring a local/seasonal dish to share (up to four portions), your own plates/cutlery/napkin, BYO craft beer, VQA wine or local beverage of choice. All are welcome to bring their fondest memories of Pamela to share if you so choose.

2015 Annual General Meeting

Editor
May 27, 2015

At the end of April 2015, Slow Food Toronto came together to hold the Annual General Meeting – it was a lovely gathering at The Hogtown Cure which brought together a variety of community members looking to support good, clean and fair food.

These are the minutes from that meeting, taken by Jeffrey Levitt.

Minutes of 2015 Slow Food Toronto Annual General Meeting

The 2015 Annual General Meeting of Slow Food Toronto Convivium  was held on April 26, 2015 at Hogtown Cure, 1484 Dundas Street west, Toronto, Ontario.

The meeting was called to order at 3:40 p.m. by Dawn Woodward, Leader of Slow Food Toronto.

Dawn reviewed the Agenda for the meeting.

Continue reading 2015 Annual General Meeting

Tales from Terra Madre 2014

 

Slow Food Toronto supported several Youth Delegates to attend and participate in Terra Madre 2014 in Turin, Italy this past Fall through a financial contribution. Our fundraisers, members and donors helped to make a magical experience possible for these youths – here are their stories of Terra Madre.

Megan Giffen

slow-food-toronto-terra-madre-2014“I began my Salone Del Gusto Terra Madre journey filled with excitement, a sense of nervousness and anxiety. I was excited to try new flavours and meet like minded people, nervous because I didn’t know what to expect and anxious that I hadn’t done enough or known enough to be there. Little did I know the next five days would be a constant tidal wave of inspiration. My taste buds were in heaven.  I was privy to tasting fresh in season white truffles, cheese aged in a cave in Slovenia, Jang (a Korean soy cure all) fermented by Korean monks, a six course meal made by six aspiring female chefs who each thoughtfully crafted dishes that explained their life stories.

I experienced food as an art, food as spirituality, food as tradition, food as politics, celebration and medicine. Medicine not only for our own bodies, but for the earth, the animals and social problems. All of these medicines involved the art of putting time, love, passion, and traditional methods into our food, to create real, great, slow food.

Continue reading Tales from Terra Madre 2014

Terra Madre Day 2014

Editor
November 28, 2014

Since 2009, each year on December 10 – Slow Food’s anniversary – food communities and Slow Food convivia around the world celebrate eating locally and sustainable local food production in more than a 1,000 events: collective meals, community festivals, protests, workshops for children, excursions to producers and much more are held to promote local food traditions and demonstrate the Slow Food philosophy of good, clean and fair food to communities, media and decision makers.

This year Slow Food Toronto welcomes you to come celebrate Terra Madre Day with us with a pot-luck dinner.

Date: Wednesday, December 10th

Time: 7:30 pm

Tickets: Donation of $5 per person – get yours in advance here

Location: Evelyn’s Crackers Kitchen – 1540 Eglinton Ave West

Good to know: The Slow Food Toronto team will be providing a variety of foods from the ark of taste and seasonal items from local farmers’ markets, everyone is encouraged to bring something to share (food or drink) along with a description of the dish and it’s contents

We welcome all Slow Food Toronto Members and other Slow Food supporters and allies to join in the celebration!