K2 Milling Tour – September 17th, 2016


*** Please note: this event is now taking place on Saturday, September 17th from 2 – 4 pm. Hope to see you there!

Have you ever wondered how your pasta is made or where the flour comes from to make your favourite pastries and bread? Or what the life of a miller is like? If so, this event is just for you! Join us for a tour of K2 Milling, one of Canada’s first certified organic flour mills, on Saturday, September 17th from 2 – 4 pm. Mark Hayhoe, the owner and a third generation Ontario miller has an array of knowledge about local grains (barley, rye, buckwheat, different kinds of wheat and more), and he’ll lead us on a tour through his unique mill to tell the story of how grains are milled and turned into flours before they are sent off to be processed into so many products we all consider staples. K2 Milling is focused on ensuring that Ontario’s local grain market flourishes — it is surely not your run-of-the-mill enterprise. This informative, fun afternoon is meant for anyone interested in learning more about the food they eat, about our local food system and for (aspiring) home bakers/ foodies who’d like to discover how flours are made. All ages are welcome. We will also be serving a light meal consisting of heritage grain organic bread made from K2 Milling flour.

In addition, we will also sample Toronto Distillery Co. spirits made with grains milled at K2 Milling.

Tickets: $30 for Slow Food Toronto members/ $35 for non-members.

Note: K2 Milling is about an hour outside of Toronto. We are coordinating carpooling options for those who need it. If you’d like to be involved (if you have a spot or need a ride, email [email protected]).

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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.
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

The Ark of Taste

ark-of-taste-slow-food-torontoBy Laura Buckley, Canadian Ark of Taste Chair

Did you know that pawpaw is native to Ontario? Have you ever heard of herring spawn on kelp or tasted Lunenburg pudding? I hadn’t before I got involved with the Ark of Taste.

As the chair of the Ark of Taste Commission for Slow Food in Canada, I am responsible for overseeing the nomination of ingredients and products that are in danger of being forgotten in our Canadian food culture. And it’s not just for the sake of nostalgia. Biodiversity is critical for the future of our planet.  Diverse animal breeds and plant varieties provide an essential ecosystem to protect the soil and decrease our reliance on chemical fertilizers and pesticides. It’s also essential for flavour. Monoculture of species creates bland taste. Hence those ubiquitous supermarket apples and tomatoes that taste like cardboard.

As our “supermarket” mentality grows, we are losing the link with the land and our food traditions. While we are lucky that we have access to exotic fruits and vegetables that travel to us from around the world, there are so many indigenous foods we have yet to taste and discover that are grown right here in our vast country. The Ark is working to identify these foods and work with small-scale producers, foragers and farmers to create a market and revive our heritage foods.

Continue reading The Ark of Taste

Ice Fishing Trip a Great Catch

March 7, 2014

On February 16thice-fishing-slow-food-toronto, 2014, 20 members of the Slow Food Toronto community assembled at Ice Fishing Outfitters on Virginia Beach, Lake Simcoe. The day was reassuringly cold, the ice was thick, and our transport out to the huts was via a vintage, red Bombardier snow coach.

Slow Food Toronto stalwart farmer / chef / entrepreneur Mark Trealout connected us to the lakeside community, and attended with his energetic boys.

We were also fortunate to have chefs Tyler Shedden and Matt Duffy of Café Boulud with us, volunteering at the end of a long week that included the tail end of Winterlicious and Valentine’s Day Friday/Saturday double. Tyler and Matt provided a fantastic cassoulet [with duck and beans from Trealout’s Grassroot Organics] and were fully prepared for a fish frying frenzy [See photos of their fish hut kitchen set up below]. SFT community members augmented the cassoulet with a variety of locally-inspired dishes, and some Ontario craft beer and VQA wines were shared during the potluck lunch.

Attendees were reminded why the activity is called fishing rather than catching, as the perch of Lake Simcoe were less than co-operative with our plans, and few rose to the bait. Nonetheless, we shared the quintessentially Canadian experience of fishing from the solid, blue surface of a winter lake, and had a chance to meet, mingle and dream up further mindful food gatherings.

Continue reading Ice Fishing Trip a Great Catch

Slow Food Toronto Pawpaw Tasting

October 15, 2013

paw-paw-fruit-slow-food-torontoTaste the Pawpaw – North America’s Largest Native Fruit

  • Learn the cultural and botanical history of the pawpaw, Asimina Triloba.
  • Become active in spreading the growth of this unique native tree. One sapling will be given as a door prize.
  • Connect with the Slow Food Toronto community to share in responsible pleasure.

When: Thursday, October 24th – 6:30pm to 8:00pm
Where: Hawthorne Food and Drink, 60 Richmond St E, Toronto, ON M5C 1N8 (tasting will be held in an event space above the restaurant) MAP.

Reservations for dinner at 8:00pm are encouraged. To make a reservation please call (647) 930-9517

Evening Agenda:

  • Ethno-botany of the pawpaw – Ionatan Waisgluss
  • Pawpaw trees in urban pollinator habitat gardens – Paul DeCampo
  • Pawpaw tasting – Planting options for seeds [Bring a bag to keep seeds moist]
  • Potential pawpaw projects – General discussion

Please RSVP to [email protected]

Ionatan Waisgluss is an upper-year student studying Botany and Anthropology at the University of Toronto. He’s worked alongside a wide range of organizations and institutions in order to explore the relationship between people, plants, and place, always looking for meaningful connections that can be used to develop and nurture community. When he isn’t studying or working, he often runs workshops, guided tours and other community-oriented events. He is also very fond of writing and the arts. You can find him online at: http://ionatan.webs.com.

Slow Fish Event: Close to Home at Red Fish Restaurant

May 23, 2013

slow-fish-canada-slow-food-torontoRed Fish Restaurant invites you to get local with your fish! Tuesday, June 4th Slow Fish Toronto and Waterkeeper are proud to be a part of an evening of beautiful, delicious and healthy fish, all from within 200 kilometres of Toronto. Chef/owner David Friedman has created a 5 course menu, plus canapés, featuring this province’s aquatic bounty.

Tuesday, June 4 at 7:00pm
Red Fish, 890 College Street

Slow Food Toronto Members $56.50
Non-members $67.80
Wine pairing $28.25

Warmth, From the WellPreserved Winter Larder

January 29, 2013

well-preserved-slow-food-torontoIn the midst of a storm, cold weather comfort can be found in every warm spoonful of a simple hearty soup.

Our Slow Food Toronto preserving team, Dana Harrison and Joel MacCharles, are the fantastic minds behind the creative and informative blog “WellPreserved.” They also host the successful, and so groovy, Home Ec nights at local neighbourhood pubs (like the cozy Avro on Queen Street East).

Each month they issue a food-related challenge—like the Winter Preserve Swap, or the Bring Your Own Bar Snack Night, or the yummy Holiday Cookie Swap. Torontonians are all invited to join in person, but the fun is open to anyone online—where you can share photos, blog posts, tweets (#WPHomeEc).

We dipped into their archives to bring you a recipe that we think is perfect for this time of year. Oven roasted toasty warm flavours, simmered to create a soothing bowl of delicious nourishment is yours for the making, here.

Made From Scratch: Terra Madre Day 2012

terra-madre-day-2012-slow-food-torontoWhen we set out to plan our Terra Madre Day Made From Scratch event we never anticipated how many great contributions we’d get from everyone. We heard from people by email, on Twitter and on Facebook. You shared some amazing photos, really excellent recipes, and stories about your own Made From Scratch meals.

As promised, we are sharing this with everyone here and we are delighted we can! Just look at some of these great meals! It’s awesome to look at it all again and be inspired to get back into the kitchen cooking good, clean, fair food from scratch.

While we don’t have to wait until next year to cook from scratch (NO WAY! Everyday is Cook From Scratch Day!) we are all really looking forward to Terra Madre 2013 when we hope to get the whole city (okay, the whole country!) cooking and sharing more great local good food together.

Continue reading Made From Scratch: Terra Madre Day 2012

Terra Madre 2012: Representing Canada, Red Fife Wheat

slow-food-toronto-terra-madre-dayBy Dawn Woodward, Producer delegate, with Edmund Rek

Ed and I were able to bring over 100 packages of our red fife based cookies and crackers. We sampled and sold our products to a very enthusiastic audience. The cocoa nibs were the favorite, though the seedy crackers and lavender shortbread were also snapped up.

I don’t know if I can quite describe the buzz of Terre Madre. To be surrounded by so many other artisans, fisherfolk, small farmers, vintners and brewers from around the globe showcasing their products was a once in a lifetime experience. We met Lewis, a young Scottish brewer (easy to spot, as he was the only one in a kilt) and traded our shortbread for his barley beer. Over many samples of all his incredible brews we heard about his Black Isle brewery, the only all-organic brewery in Scotland that grows their own grains, with an emphasis on barley.

We enjoyed the opportunity to talk with Andrew Whitely, of Bread Matters UK, about rye sourdoughs. We talked about how much “real” homemade bread should be the norm, and shared our enthusiasm for the importance of heritage wheats.

Ed befriended the young Austrian behind the pastry counter, where we ate freshly baked strudel and hazelnut croissants every morning. All of these connections have given me hope about the future of our business and local food systems.

Continue reading Terra Madre 2012: Representing Canada, Red Fife Wheat

Terra Madre 2012: Life Lessons

terra-madre-day-2012By Voula Halliday, Slow Food Toronto Leader

Around the table is where I learned most of the life lessons that shaped me.

It is where my mother ate silently when distressed or anxious and where I learned that silence comes from many places, and that there can be great pain when a person’s voice is stifled or drowned out. It is where I waited for the right moment to share news with everyone; and where I learned that joy lights up a room and makes my father laugh louder than thunder. It is where my grandfather would let me devour one of the canned prunes my mother reserved especially for him (I can taste them now—plumy sweetness mixed with the longing that is nostalgia). I learned that even on a tight budget, the smallest morsel can be shared. And that good health comes from this sharing too.

As part of my reflection on the Terra Madre experience, and on this note of sharing, I will first admit that it is draining to care for, cultivate, motivate, inspire, and build the awareness in others that our fork wields a mighty mighty power that can change the world. As a dedicated volunteer caregiver of Slow Food I have found it a struggle on many fronts. But somehow, in the loud and crowded 80,000 square metre arena of the Lingotto Fiere*, in between a sudden and violent bout of food sickness (from an in-flight sandwich), a schedule jam packed with meetings and the 3 day congress sessions, I managed to find a way to my restoration.

It was a simple line that Carlo Petrini delivered. Petrini is most powerful when he expresses himself in small “statement of fact” terms. They are thoughts born from personal experience, easy to digest and absorb, and come at a time when perhaps we need it most. Like water into a sponge, here’s what I took in, most gratefully: “Sleep on it. Get up in the morning, and be over the rage”.

Continue reading Terra Madre 2012: Life Lessons