Eating-up Stratford
Bite by Byte

Monday, July 19, 2010

Slow Food is for Sharing at the Potluck Picnic in the Park

Slow Food is an international organization that is composed of various local chapters, each known as a Convivium (plural: Convivia). The root word "convivial" means to be fond of feasting and good company... so by my count Slow Food is only truly Slow Food when it's being shared by others! The Slow Food Perth County Convivium reveled in the full sense of the term this past weekend, as we all got together to celebrate the peak of the summer local food season with a Potluck Picnic in the Park (the park being Lower Queen's Park, nestled between the majestic Festival Theatre and the glistening swan-filled waters of Lake Victoria).
Everyone in our community on Sunday - Slow Food members and non-members alike - were encouraged to come down to the park and share creations made using local, seasonal produce. The Slow Food values of good, clean and fair food were in full force on our communal table, which turned into a veritable showcase of the Perth County Bounty, Summer 2010.
You might have already noticed that the pictures on this particular blog post are above-and-beyond anything I could ever hope to snap myself. One of Slow Food Perth County's most avid members happens to be Irene Miller, Stratford's most prolific  and talented photographers. We take pictures, Irene makes art... and I am honoured to have been offered  these amazing images of this festive celebration for my humble blog. As Irene mentioned to me, "Everyone had a great time and it showed in the photos."
I was stoked to finally make some food for other people to enjoy  (that's me on the right assembling my dish alongside fellow Slow Foodies Brendon Lyoness [aka Caveman of 'Caveman Crops'] and Tania Milojevic). I've been spoiled rotten by the local food community since I started this blog, and on Sunday it was time to give back! 
Fortuitously, the picnic corresponded with the first weekend of the Perth County sweet corn season, so I grabbed a duz' from the Thames River Melons stand at the Saturday Farmer's Market (they're also responsible for that beautiful golden watermelon from two pics back!). I made a chilled sweet corn risotto finished with C'est Bon goat's cheese (produced locally near St. Marys), cradling generous scoopfuls within the folds of bib lettuce fresh-picked from my Community Garden plot. See pic above (did I do that? Thanks for making me look good Irene!).

For a change, I think I'll just sit back and let the photos speak for themselves...
Caveman Crops Potato Salad - Strictly home-grown!

Farmers Feed Cuties!

Mmmm. Pie.
That last picture reminds me - next Sunday (July 25) I'll be scarfing tonnes of McCully's Hill pies, extreme-eating style, at the McCully's Hill Farm In Your Face Pie Festival pie-eating contest. Luckily for everyone I didn't practice my speed-pie-eating technique on Sunday... or did I and it was so fast no one noticed? If you have a perfect pie recipe and you think that it has what it takes to win the title of Best Pie next week, please bring it on and let the celebrity judges taste your wares. Slow Food members: this is your next challenge if you choose to accept it!

Thanks to everyone who brought along a dish for this great community event, and thanks again to Irene Miller for her artful photography! Go to her website's Contact Page to sign-up for her stunning and inspiring "Photo of the Week with Poetry" e mails.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, looks great! and lots of vegetarian for me to eat :) Hopefully there will be another so I can join in.

    And kudos for the elegantly simple idea of using paper table covers instead of signage. What a great idea for a potluck!