Slow Food Sacramento

A Chapter of Slow Food USA

Browsing Posts published by Slow Food Sacramento

As the new SFUSA Governor for the Central Valley Region I will work to strengthen our regional network of Slow Food Chapters and to share information about activities of interest up and down the Valley. (Who knew that Stanislaus County is the nation’s sweet potato capital?) I hope we will join forces to host some multi-chapter events and look forward to visiting our counterpart leaders from Shasta to Madera County.

And I anticipate that forging relationships with California’s other three governors and the governors across the country will bring loads of ideas and energy to our efforts to promote good, clean, fair food for all. I’ve already learned that Slow Food Sacramento is a standout chapter in this region and state. I’ll point SFUSA our way when they are looking for replicable models and best practices for other chapters. I’ve also learned that I’ll be the main connector between the region’s chapters and SFUSA. I welcome your suggestions and counsel.

On a more personal note, we recently hosted an organic farmer from Japan, seeking refuge in California from the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster. Read about it here.

Charity Kenyon
charity@slowfoodsacramento.com

18 we hosted our Third Annual Urban Ag Fest attended by 130 friends of Slow Food Sacramento. The event was on the lawn at the old Army Depot right next to the new garden we installed for Plates Café and Catering, a project of St. John’s Shelter for Women and Children. Sunny and breezy weather made this the perfect setting for learning about urban beekeeping, edible landscaping, chicken keeping, food preserving and more.
View the photos »

Everyone was pleased to see real progress on the garden, which was constructed by Bill Maynard of the Sacramento Community Garden Coalition with the help of volunteers from Slow Food Sacramento and St. John’s Shelter. Spring Warren’s talk was inspiring and many of us took home a signed copy of her Quarter Acre Farm. The food, supervised by Bobbin Mulvaney and made and served by Plates’ volunteer learners was delicious and plentiful. And the auction items were irresistible. We raised over $10,000 for the garden and introduced lots of new fans to the great café at Plates—open Monday through Friday 11-2. Visit and enjoy!

Marion Nestle
Sunday, July 3, 2011

Q: I know you say “vote with your fork,” and I do, as often as possible, but it seems so small a gesture. In what other ways can we, as consumers, speak out or act to change our food system?

A: Vote with your fork and vote with your vote. Today’s food movement gives you plenty of opportunity to do both. Voting with your fork means buying and eating according to what you believe is right, at least to the extent you can.

Read more »

View Photos »

By Mark Bittman
Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mass-produced tomatoes have become redder, more tender and slightly more flavorful than the crunchy orange “cello-wrapped” specimens of a couple of decades ago, but the lives of the workers who grow and pick them haven’t improved much since Edward R. Murrow’s revealing and deservedly famous Harvest of Shame report of 1960, which contained the infamous quote, “We used to own our slaves; now we just rent them.”

But bit by bit things have improved some, a story that’s told in detail and with insight and compassion by Barry Estabrook in his new book, “Tomatoland.” We can actually help them improve further.

Read more »


By Gina Kim
Sunday, May. 29, 2011

Gleaming stainless steel dominates the long-abandoned fertilizer and supply store along Highway 16, just before the road bends into the dusty town of Esparto.

Meat cases have been cleaned, shelving installed and rails – strong enough to support 800-pound carcasses hanging from the ceiling – line the labyrinth of sterile rooms.

Required inspections are all that’s left to make the Manas Ranch Old-Style Custom Meat Market the only USDA-inspected meat processor within a 100-mile radius when it opens in June, said owner Fred Manas.

“We will be able to ship our meat anywhere in the U.S.,” said Manas, who raises 100 Angus-Hereford grain-finished cows without hormones or antibiotics. “We will be able to sell our meat directly to customers.”

The market will process the beef Manas raises, meat raised by pig, lamb and goat farmers throughout the region and wild game bagged by hunters.

Read more »

May 9 from Noon – 5 pm
Location: Putah Creek Lodge, UC Davis

This library/academic convivium features presentations by three internationally known speakers, Ken Albala, Steve Sando, and, Leopoldo López Gil on Latin American food, its roots and its modern interpretations. Fee includes lunch.

On May 9th, 2011, the UC Davis Library will host “Nuevo Latino Cuisine: Culinary Artistry, Community and Conversation.” This fee-based library/academic convivium features presentations by three internationally known speakers:

• Ken Albala, a noted food historian, faculty member at the University of the Pacific and prolific author and editor of publications that include Eating Right in the Renaissance and A Cultural History of Food, will speak on “The Roots of Latin American Food.”

Steve Sando, owner of Rancho Gordo: New World Specialty Food, culinary consultant and author of Heirloom Beans, will discuss “Redefining the New American Kitchen: Bringing Latin American Heirloom Ingredients to the Modern Table”.

• Leopoldo López Gil, a founding member of the Slow Food Movement in Venezuela; President, the Academia Venezolana de Gastronomía; and restaurateur. Señor López will talk about the “new modern Latin cuisine” and the ingredients and culinary traditions that encourage chefs and serious home cooks to experiment and create new fusion dishes. A book signing will follow the presentations.

Location: Putah Creek Lodge, University of California, Davis

Time: 12Noon – 5PM, Monday, May 9th, 2011
Cost: $50, includes lunch and presentations
Registration forms: http://www.lib.ucdavis.edu/ul/events/nuevo-latino-cuisine/nlc-registration.pdf

The convivium is accompanied by a Shields Library lobby exhibit, “Nuevo Latino Cuisine: Culinary Art, Community and Conversation” : http://www.lib.ucdavis.edu/ul/about/exhibits/?item=nuevolatinocuisine

Contact: Myra Appel, mlappel@lib.ucdavis.edu, for additional information.

sustainable seafoodby Brandon Darnell
Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op is the best place in the state to purchase sustainable seafood, and No. 2 in the nation, according to Greenpeace.

“(The co-op) is one of those great stores that has taken amazing steps in realizing that sustainable seafood is incredibly important,” said Casson Trenor, seafood campaigner for Greenpeace.

Greenpeace ranks the 20 biggest grocery store chains on how sustainable their seafood is, and Trenor said some smaller grocers are included as well due to their commitment to ensuring seafood is sustainable.

Read more »

I spent a day on a garbage truck recently…the result of a winning bid at a live auction fundraiser. Watching all the trash we discard, I realized that eating the Slow Food way greatly minimizes the amount of waste we discard. Food packaging makes up about 32% of household waste in the U.S., according to Earth911. Shopping at the farmers market (or growing your own) means little packaging and fresher produce so you throw away less spoiled food.

Limiting our reliance on convenience foods and fast food, with their abundance of packaging, greatly reduces the trash we send to the landfill. Shopping at the bulk aisle allows you to reuse your plastic bags or bring your own containers. The Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op will weigh your empty containers and mark them with a tare weight so you can completely eliminate packages and bags. I buy my spices, oatmeal, peanut butter, powdered milk, flour and dried
beans in the bulk aisle. The name of the game is pre-cycling (choosing products with eco-friendly or no packaging), which provides on the best method of reducing the amount of waste we generate.

Karen Auwaerter
President, Slow Food Sacramento
Karen@slowfoodsacramento.com

View Photos »