Feel free to delete this if it has been addressed. I looked through the postings and didn't see the topic specifically addressed.

"Slow food" is movement and a web site, and a way of thinking about food and where it fits into our lives. From their website, "Slow Food is an idea, a way of living and a way of eating. It is a global, grassroots movement with thousands of members around the world that links the pleasure of food with a commitment to community and the environment." My knowledge of slow food is mostly from NPR radio, so I may not be correct on all of the details. From wikipedia, "The Slow Food movement was founded by Carlo Petrini in Italy to combat fast food. It claims to preserve the cultural cuisine and the associated food plants and seeds, domestic animals, and farming within an ecoregion. It was the first established part of the broader Slow movement. The movement has since expanded globally to over 83,000 members in 122 countries."

Not being one to join every movement that piques my interest, or one who likes to be fundamentalist anything, I tend to interpret the concept primarily as what I can do to avoid fast-food, factory-made-food, and convenience food. In addition, I try to emphasize using locally or home-grown food that are recognizable as what they are - an apple, an eggplant, a tomato, some rhubarb stalks. To me, slow food is about flavor and enjoyment. Slow food is more seasonal - you can only get fresh peaches 2 months out of the year, and fresh tomatoes for 3 or 4 months. If it is winter, those grapes are not locally grown. We freeze when we have extra for some foods. Of course, flour, potatoes, and some other commodities are not local or seasonal, but are still staples of the diet.

With that introduction, I'm still looking for foods that fit into this concept. Since joining A|N, I've learned to make hummus, which I now make twice weekly from the raw ingredients (albeit none locally grown!). Thank's to Sydni's influence, I started making my own yogurt, which I love - so different from the store-bought type, tart, and as barely-sweet as I want it, and smooth instead of jelly-like. I have used local fruit in the yogurt - just a puree with some honey. In both cases, these foods fit nicely into my life, even though I work long hours. Both require minimal active preparation, just some long waiting times that can be overnight or while at work.

In the past, I made my own bread, but not so much any more. Maybe I'll give it a try tomorrow. It was a great 'tradition', soothing, almost a form of meditation. I don't know why I stopped. We also used to make our own pasta. Last week, we went to a Korean restaurant, and wound up sitting facing the kitchen. It was amazing watching the cook make the noodles by hand, stretching the dough into long strings. Now I'm thinking about making our own noodles again.

Just curious, is the 'slow food' concept part of the thought process for forum members? What do you make that would fit into this concept? Can slow food, and a very busy schedule, be compatable? Do you try to find local products or local cuisines as part of your culinary style?

Tags: slow food

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Replies to This Discussion

I'm lucky enough to be born in a family of slow-fooders.

My paternal grandparents owned a restaurant where they served traditional regional cuisine (Pablo Picasso was a frequent guest). My maternal grandmother had a vast vegetable garden and several orchards, where she spent most of her time. My sister and her husband run a 'ferme-auberge' (farm & inn) where they serve mostly what they produce themselves. My own parents were slow-fooders without being aware there was a name for this lifestyle, and have started to make their own yogurt, bread and pasta more than 30 years ago.

Slow-food is, or was, very compatable with a busy schedule for most of them, as they are, or were, in the business ;-)

It's not so easy for me, I have to buy my bread, pasta and yogurt at the grocery store, but I do my best to buy seasonal and local products when I can. Which isn't hard at all when you live in an area where fruits and vegetables abound in quantity and variety, to the point they constitute the bulk of the economic activity and exports. Therefore I'm a slow-fooder, not by choice, but by familial tradition, and because the local market just asks for it.
Great post. I was a memeber of Slow Food for years, but just couldn't keep up with all my interests, so I let it go.
Best way to think of slow food is empirical food. Food made from the basics, as natural as possible. As an example, I make slow food lasagne and steam my own roma tomatoes for the sauce, and make the pasta from scratch with genuine semolina or durum. It is to remove pre-processing from what you eat, and also to ensure what you eat is ethically produced. I was a slow fooder before I even knew there was a slow food movement.
It is to remove pre-processing from what you eat, and also to ensure what you eat is ethically produced

Exactly. And also ensuring that what you eat didn't have to travel 12,000 kms to reach your dinner table.
I can't keep up with all the Cool New Names for things that are as old as the hills. I grew up with homemade food, and as many of the ingredients as possible were grown on our farm.

The "Slow Food" phrase has only been around since the late 80s. I'm not jumping on that bandwagon. When I have time to cook more in depth, I do. When I don't, I don't.

I remember people in the late 70s/early 80s at the local food co-op talking about how important it was to eat locally, and in season. Michio Kushi and the Macroneurotics (please... someone start a band with this name) were the big buzz words in the late70s, early 80s. I haven't done any research to see what the new now word/phrase was before then.
It kind of sounds to me like Slow Food is all about putting something of yourself into what you eat.

Fingertips are a form of protein.

If it won’t pound,
add fresh flowers
and use it for a
centerpiece.”


Judith, I would love it if you could be an alternative to Marth Stewart. I would buy one of your books.
I once chopped off the end of my thumb while slicing a bagel. The ER Dr. said that they get a lot of bagel injuries. It didn't get used as food, however - they sewed it back on. Full sensation returned after about 3 years.

I also sliced the end off my pinkie finger, while working on an automatic meat slicer at a school cafeteria. They never recovered the piece. When I returned and asked for it back, they said "what piece of finger". I think this was a don't ask-dont tell situation. It might count as slow food, but it actually happened pretty fast.

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