Slow Food Sacramento

A Chapter of Slow Food USA

Browsing Posts published by Slow Food Sacramento

 It is true that man does not live by bread alone; he must eat something with it. And the art of making this something as economical, savory and healthy as possible is, I insist, a true art.  ~ Letter to Pellegrino Artusi from poet Lorenzo Stecchetti, 1845-1916

Pellagrino Artusi was such an artist.  A businessman, gastronomist, author, he is considered to be the father of Italian home cooking. In 1891 at the tender age of 70, after being turned down by several publishers, he self published a manual for cooking called Science in the kitchen and the art of eating well.   His first edition of 1,000 copies was an overwhelming success. He saw 15 editions published before his death in 1911 at the age of 90.  Originally containing 475 recipes, the last edition of Artusi, as the book is simply called, contained 790 recipes, many of which had been sent to him from home cooks across Italy. It is still one of Italy’s best selling books and has never been out of print. (Take that Pinocchio!)

Artusi travelled throughout the Italian peninsula. He became familiar with many of the regions and their culinary traditions, and he began collecting recipes that later became the foundation of his book. Family wealth enabled him to retire at the age of 45 and he devoted himself to his passions, culture and cuisine.

Artusi wrote his manual three decades after the unification of Italy.  His was the first to include recipes from many different regions in one cookbook and he is credited with establishing a national Italian cuisine.  He also wrote in the Italian language, which helped to develop a uniform language for working in the kitchen and beyond.  Italian historian Piero Camporesi said, “Science In The Kitchen has done more for national unification than Manzoni’s novel The Betrothed.”  [The Betrothed is an historical novel considered the most widely read book in the Italian language.].

Artusi himself was leery of books about cooking. In his preface he says, “Beware of books that deal with this art: most of them are inaccurate or incomprehensible, especially the Italian ones.  The French are a little better. But from either, the very most you will glean are a few notions, useful only if you already know the art.”

He considered his book a teaching manual, “I practice using this manual, one simply needs to know how to hold a wooden spoon,” he wrote.  “The best teacher is experience. . .Yet even lacking this, with a guide such as mine, and devotion to your labours, you should be able, I hope, to put something decent together.” 

His book is chatty, containing anecdotes and short stories, in addition to the recipes, which adds to its charm and shows his wit and wisdom.  He provides menus based on what is in season (sound familiar?) and menus for holidays and religious feasts.

Casa Artusi, established in 2007, is a tribute to the man who single handedly put Italian home cooking on the culinary map.  Housed in a renovated convent and church in the small town of Forlimpopoli, Casa Artusi has a restaurant, l’Osteria, wine store, culinary school, library, meeting space, art exhibits and museum.  It is a place to read, learn, practice, taste and appreciate the treasure that is “Italian home cooking.”

The library contains around 45,000 books including Artusi’s personal library, bequeathed to the city, the Italian Gastronomy Collection (books, magazines, films, etc. about food culture, especially home cooking), and the Forlimpopoli Council library.

There is a Restaurant, l’Osteria, and wine cellar housed in the complex.  The Restaurant and l’Osteria serve traditional, regional dishes and prepare some of Artusi’s recipes, depending the season.  The wine cellar is associated with the Enoteca Regionale Emilia-Romagna and has over 200 different kinds of wine from the region.

The Cooking School offers a variety of day classes with some of the area’s best chefs.  Also demonstrating regional and traditional Romagnolo home cooking is the Associazione della Mariette, named after a woman whom Artusi said, “. . .is both a good cook, and a decent, honest person. . .”.

Starting in 1997, Forlimpopoli has held an annual gastronomic event dedicated to Artusi, The Festa Artusiana. For over a week every night between 7pm and midnight, Casa Artusi and the historical center of the town  come alive as a “city of taste.” Streets, alleys, courtyards and squares become stages for food stands featuring Artusi’s dishes, exhibitions, performances, multi-media productions, tastings and gastronomic tours, concerts, children’s events, cultural events, art displays, and more.

In 2013, the Festa Artusiana will be from June 22 through the 30.  For more information contact the Festa or Casa Artusi.

Off the beaten path, along the via Emilia between Forli and Cesena, Forlimpopoli was founded by the Romans in the 2nd century BC and has been inhabited ever since.  It is the birthplace of Artusi and home to Casa Artusi.  It makes an interesting diversion for anyone interested in the history of Italian cooking, excellent traditional cooking, or wines from the Emilia-Romagna region.

Casa Artusi

Via Costa 27, 47034 Forlimpopoli (FC)

+39 0543 743138

www.casartusi.it

info@casartusi.it

Festa Artusiana

http://www.festartusiana.it/

 

– Lisa Frank, Frank & Delicious, is attending Terra Madre, 2012.

http://www.carighttoknow.org/?utm_campaign=20120822_daily3&recruiter_id=8455&utm_medium=email&utm_source=labelgmos

Thank you to all who attended, sponsored and donated to our Urban Ag Fest 2012! Eleven schools participated in the school garden showcase with 12 community sponsors. Another dozen Urban Ag Partners joined us to show how they are supporting school gardens. The dinner on the Senior Lawn catered by Matt & Yvette Woolston (of the Supper Club at the Crocker and Matteo) was a delicious play on the school lunch menu. Speaker Delaine Eastin was truly inspiring. This educational and coalition-building event raised funds for the gardens at Rosemont High Green Academy and O.W. Erlewine Ecology Center.

In conjunction with Rosemont High Green Academy, we launched Slow Food Sacramento’s new Sacramento School Garden Coalition.

Our guests were wowed by the students, parent volunteers, and community support. A few comments:

“Loved those kids” — sponsor

“I loved seeing how excited the children were about gardening.”– sponsor

“Thank you for inviting us to Saturday’s event, it was an honor to be there and see so many supporters. Please keep us in mind for the different resources that the after-school program can use.”–school participant

“Please extend our thank-you to the other Slow Food members for helping our cause. Also, we were thrilled to meet Delaine Eastin and to hear her amazing speech. I’m ready to vote for her for governor!”–school participant.

The schools and their sponsors:

Rosemont High School Green Academy •  Teichert, Inc.
O.W. Erlewine Elementary School Ecology Center •   Lippe, Gaffney, Wagner LLP  and Marguerite Roth
Grant High School GEO Environmental Science and Design Academy •   Art & Susan Scotland
Luther Burbank High School  •   David & Maga Triche
Alice Birney Elementary School •   Mennemeier Glassman Stroud LLP
Sam Brannan Middle School •   Sam Brannan Special Ed Program
Sequoia Elementary School •  David & Maxine Clark
Theodore Judah Elementary School  •   Tony & Joan Stone
Leonardo da Vinci K-8  •   Porter Scott
Fruit Ridge Elementary •  Kingbird Farms
Leo A. Palmiter Jr./Sr. High School Landscaping & Horticulture Careers Program, and Sustainable Environments Academy • Sacramento County Office of Education

 

 

Read about the upcoming event: http://www.sacramentopress.com/headline/69083/Urban_Ag_Fest_Saturday_at_Rosemont_High_School

www.GRASacramento.org
P.O. Box 160424
Sacramento, CA 95816

GRAS (Green Restaurants Alliance Sacramento) is working to build a sustainable food community in Sacramento. Their foremost program is kitchen-scrap composting, which collects valuable kitchen waste and diverts it to local farms, school and community gardens for nourishing compost. They promote their message of recycling of kitchen waste not only to restaurants, but also to schools, nonprofits, businesses, small children, home cooks and accomplished chefs. As of this year, the GRAS composting program has diverted 175,000 pounds of kitchen scraps from the landfill to fertilize local farms and gardens. They encourage use of products and processes in restaurants that minimize waste, including recyclable and compostable food containers and cork recycling. They also produce Zero-Waste compostable food and supplies with Atlas Disposal.

http://produceexpress.net/
(916) 446-8918
2630 5th Street
Sacramento, CA 95818

Produce Express has been located in Sacramento since 1983 and serves over 1,300 food service establishments with delivery of fresh produce seven days a week. Their service features primarily locally grown produce from throughout northern California, much of it organic and seasonal as well as farmstead cheeses, local dairy products, olives oil, and edible flowers. They actively establish strong working relationships with local small farmers in the region and work to educate their customers about the source of the produce being sold. Capay Organics, River Dog Farm and Del Rio Botanicals are among the organic farms that Produce Express delivers from. Their website features the weekly Market Outlook to alert restaurants to the freshest seasonal produce available. Their staff actively discusses the importance of sustainable foods and its positive effect on the environment with customers. In addition, Produce Express encourages restaurants to work with GRAS (Green Restaurants Alliance Sacramento) to recycle kitchen waste, compost and use recyclable containers.

http://devinegelateria.com
(916) 446-0600
1121 19th Street
Sacramento, CA 95811

Devine Gelateria & Café features gelato made with a base prepared onsite under the direction of the owner, a licensed pasteurizer, who studied gelato making in Italy so she could produce authentic Italian gelato. It is the first of its kind in Sacramento with gelato and sorbetto flavors changing daily. All ingredients used in the making of their gelato and sorbetto come from local ingredients, including seasonal fruits from local sources, local milk, and locally roasted coffee beans. No artificial ingredients are used. Gelato cups and spoons are biodegradable. Owner Elizabeth McCleary and her staff take every opportunity to explain to customers the sourcing of their ingredients and their sustainable values.

http://www.revolution-wines.com/
(916) 444-7711
2831 S Street
Sacramento, CA 95816

Revolution Wines produces wine under their own label using locally grown grapes from Clarksburg and Sacramento and Amador counties, generally from within 50 miles of their facility. Grapes are brought to Revolution where they are processed, aged, bottled in their wine cellar and sold at their wine tasting bistro at the same location. Only natural fermentation methods are used. Classes in wine tasting and tours of their wine-making operation are offered onsite to enhance understanding of the importance of locally-grown and made wine. One of their sources, Gandy Hill Vineyards in Elk Grove uses no herbicides or pesticides and the zinfandel grapes used by Revolution are dry farmed. All their wine grape waste is recycled with an offsite company that, in turn, distributes the waste to be converted to grape seed oil, compost and biofuel. Some of the pomace they generate is returned to vineyards for mulch. All their kegs are green.

www.soilborn.org
(916) 363-9685

American River Ranch
2140 Chase Drive
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670

The Farm on Hurley Way
3000 Hurley Way
Sacramento, CA 95864

Soil Born Farms, located on the American River in Rancho Cordova (40 acres) and in Sacramento on Hurley Way (1.5 acres), organically grows a wide variety of fruits and vegetables linked to the seasons and temperament of the Sacramento region. All produce is harvested within a day of distribution to local restaurants, famers markets and at their own farm stand at the American River ranch location from May – November. This nonprofit farm is actively involved in fostering organic farming through their farm apprentice program and youth education, special events at the farm, participation at community events and working in partnership with other farm-related groups; all these efforts demonstrate their commitment to quality organic produce and the connection between food, health and the environment. All water used in irrigation comes from the American River and no synthetic pesticides or fertilizers are used. All produce is packaged in reusable boxes and they actively recycle and compost onsite.

http://www.delriobotanical.com/
(916) 991-1843
20030 Old River Road
West Sacramento, CA 95691

Del Rio Botanical, located on old River road between Sacramento and Woodland, is a privately owned 200-acre ranch producing open-pollinated organically grown seed and freshly packed specialty produce. All of Del Rio’s produce is harvested in the morning for same day delivery through Produce Express to over 50 restaurants in the region, including Mulvaney’s, Waterboy, Masullo, Grange and the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op. Their unique offerings include baby squashes with blossoms attached, Italian cucumbers, heirloom cherry tomatoes, lemon basil, Early Lady beans, calendula petals, chocolate mint, and 125 other specialty products grown on this organic farm. Del Rio offers farm tours and dining opportunities to help educate the community about the importance of organic farming. At every level of their operation, attention is paid to the sustainability of their farm. They use only multi-use boxes and permanent equipment. In addition, they provide year round employment for six agricultural workers.