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September 2013 Newsletter


In This Issue
Chair's Message
Join Slow Food USA
Volunteers Welcome
Pat Welsh cancelled
Raising Chickens Workshop
Patchwork:Edible Edition
Central Orange County Food Swap
Healthy Sack Lunch Challenge.
Dinner at Andrei's Conscious Cuisine.
Edible Gifts Cooking Class
Hands on Tamale Making Class
Join the Slow Food Movement!
We invite you to join the Slow Food movement! Slow Food Orange County is working hard to preserve and protect local foods and food traditions. Our convivium plans events and programs in places across Orange County-anything from community gardens, taste education dinners, and farm tours-join the network and become active in planning and participating in these diverse initiatives.  Click here for Benefits of Membership,  here to join or send us an email if you have questions.


Message From the Chair

Hi Everyone,


It is hard to believe that summer has ended and we are sending out our first fall newsletter. Many people who have attended Slow Food Orange County events over the past months have expressed interest in becoming more involved with the chapter. One way to start your involvement is by attending a Steering Committee Meeting. All Steering Committee meetings are open to members and those interested in active participation with chapter. The next Steering Committee meeting is September 18 at 6pm. We share a potluck dinner while working through the meeting agenda. If you are interested in attending please contact Ted Wright, our co-chair, for details


Slow Food OC is launching two new projects that offer opportunities for involvement. One project is our Ark of Taste trunk and the other is with school gardens. These projects offer the opportunity to volunteer either one time or on an ongoing basis.


Ark of Taste Exhbit "Trunk"

The Ark of Taste project aims to protect biodiversity by identifying, cataloging and promoting the production and use of endangered or threatened edible plants, animals and traditional culinary dishes. This is both a Slow Food USA project as well as a Slow Food International project. The "Ark" is a metaphorical ark based on Noah's Ark.


Slow Food OC is interested in supporting this project by using it as an educational tool to teach about the importance of biodiversity and why edibles need to be protected. If you are not familiar with this concern, the issue is that on a very rapid basis both edible plants and animals and traditional food preparation methods are being lost in the same way wild species are becoming extinct. One reason for this is that these edibles and techniques, do not lend themselves to large scale industrial production. Many  people have exchanged home-cooked meals for industrially processed prepared foods or eating out. The result is a loss of precious resources to the culinary world and more importantly a loss of resilience to our agriculture system provided by biodiversity.



Slow Food OC is often invited to provide an information table at community events. We would like to make better use of these opportunities by creating an interesting exhibit that will also serve as an educational tool. We are working to create an Ark of Taste Exhibit, or "trunk show." We need volunteers to collect items that are already on the Ark of Taste. Start by looking at the Slow Food Ark of Taste website to learn about the project and be inspired! All items on the Ark are listed on the website. We are looking for members to collect one or more items for this exhibit. When possible we would like to display the actual item; however, in many cases we will have to make do with a photo (particularly for animals). Additionally we would like recipes for using the item and samples of prepared foods. For example, the Gravenstein Apple is a delicious fruit on the Ark of Taste. This apple was threatened because it does not ship well and commercial orchards had stopped growing the apple and were replacing trees. Since boarding the Ark of Taste, this apple is now being grown on several small farms in northern California. For the Ark of Taste exhibit we might have photos of the apples, information about the farmers, the actual apples when in season, a jar of Gravensteins cider or applesauce and a recipe for an apple cake.


Linda Elbert is chairing this project. If you would like to get involved please contact her by email at


School Gardens

School gardens have always been strongly supported by Slow Food USA and International. Slow Food OC is interested in supporting this effort. We would like to contribute to teaching children where food comes from, how to grow it, how to cook it, and how to be healthy. Slow Food USA has just completed a school garden manual that will is available online. Chapter 1 is  available now and the remaining chapters will be available by the end of the month. This manual is the end product of hard work by chapters across the country with successful school garden programs documenting best practices. The manual addresses concerns specific to Slow Food such as how to teach "good, clean and fair" to children in the garden, how to be successful with an all volunteer workforce, and fundraising. Other groups in Orange County that already support school gardens are interested in partnering with our chapter. They would like to add the Slow Food values to their programs. In order to move forward with this effort, we need volunteers. This is an opportunity to get involved in the development of a new project. We welcome volunteers who want to contribute a one-time effort for a specific task as well as those interested in becoming involved on an ongoing basis. Gillian Poe, our Outreach Chair, will coordinate this project. If you are interested please contact her at


Looking forward to hearing from you!

Linda Elbert

Chair, SFOC

Join Slow Food USA -- New Incentives!

Want to make a change in our food system AND give back to your local chapter?  

Join Slow Food USA today!


Why are you you interested in Slow Food? Because you enjoy building community around delicious food? Because you want to learn more about where your food comes from and the people who produce it? Because you want to make a difference in the way food arrives at our tables in the United States?


There is a way to deepen your commitment to good, clean and fair food today. Join Slow Food USA! The national organization has redesigned its membership programs, with new benefits, and we are offering local incentives as well. When you join Slow Food USA for only $60/individual or $100/family per year, you will receive:

  • Email updates with breaking food news, special discount offers and invitations, and registration information for local events from potlucks to community garden work projects to chef dinners
  • The beautiful bi-annual publications of Slow Food USA
  • Discounts on ALL ticketed Slow Food Orange County events

And if you join or renew during the national membership drive, September 3-30, 2013, you will also receive a Southern California Local Food Wheel, showing unique foods sourced from Santa Barbara, Ventura, Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino, Riverside, Imperial, and San Diego counties as well as from coastal waters.


Under the new membership system, Slow Food Orange County will receive a portion of every single membership purchased or renewed -- that is cash that will go directly into our local food economy!


We hope you enjoy our local Slow Food Orange County events and that being part of our chapter has made you ever more passionate about good, clean and fair food. By joining Slow Food USA, you can help us work with other chapters to be part of something even bigger: real changes in our food system at the national level. Thank you in advance for your support!






Slow Food Orange County Needs You

We are looking for active participants for our Events and Outreach Committees. No experience necessary, just a desire to effect positive change in our community and, of course, a hearty appetite for good food!


EVENTS COMMITTEE: Want to share ideas on how to promote good, clean and fair food? Then take the lead on one specific event or volunteer for the day and help out. To get involved email Stacey Blaschke, Events Chair, at


OUTREACH COMMITTEE:  The Outreach Committee is busy!  We're looking for volunteers to help out at the Patchwork Edible event coming to Costa Mesa Oct 5th & 6th. We will be creating our booth display, including the new Ark of Taste Trunk and OC Food Swap Collection. If you would like to help with these two projects or volunteering the day of the event, please contact Gillian Poe at We would love to have your help!

Upcoming Events 

Author/ Expert Gardner Pat Welsh speaking on Growing Great Cool-Season Veggies, the Organic Way

Date: Saturday, September 28th


 We are so sorry, Pat Welsh has had to have surgery and will be unable to be our guest speaker for this event, and the event is canceled. We are looking to reschedule a talk by Pat in March so please stay tuned.

Raising Chickens Workshop from SEEDS Arts and Education, Inc.

Date: Saturday October 5, 2013

Time: 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM

Location: Laguna Beach, address sent upon RSVP

Members and non-members welcome

Pamela Hagen has raised chickens in the backyard of her Laguna Beach home and will share what she has learned about various breeds of chickens and how to care for them. She will talk about parts of a chicken, what they eat and what they do and need.&

Families are welcome. Price $15 for adults; kids are free.

Register at

Carpooling is recommended since parking is limited.

For further information, contact

Patchwork Show: Edible Edition

Date: October 5th & 6th

Time: Sat, 11-8; Sun 11-5

Location: SOCO Market, 3303 Hyland Ave Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Members and non-members welcome

PATCHWORK SHOW: EDlBLE EDITION draws on the flourishing artisan food movement in Southern California and the strong following that Patchwork's arts & craft editions have gained through 22 festivals over seven years.

The event will feature on extensive outdoor artisan marketplace hosting vendor booths that showcase the best in local artisan food crafting alongside kitchen goods and food-related handmade products from the region.

Food trucks and pop-up restaurants from innovative local chefs will feature collaborations and special weekend menu items created just for the event.

Attendees can learn in hands-on DIY workshops, lectures and panels led by visionaries in the Southern California food scene. Local chefs will be on site for book signings and Q & A's. The family-friendly event includes kids' activities and installations bringing food and art together in an interactive environment.

Central Orange County Food Swap

Date: Sunday, October 13th

Time: 11pm - 1pm

Location: The Village, 1505 E. 17th St., Santa Ana 92705

Members and non-members welcome

A Food Swap is part silent auction/part village marketplace/part fun-loving open house where your homemade creations (breads, preserves, special concoctions, canned goods, etc.) become your own personal currency for use in swapping with other participants. What better way to diversify your pantry and network with like-minded friends and neighbors? It will be a perfect time to start exploring -- and enjoying -- the first fruits of the fall harvest. Apples, pears, grapes and PUMPKINS! It's time to start planning for those spooky Halloween delights.

We welcome everyone, as long as you bring something you made, grew, or foraged yourself. We will also consider other homemade non-comestibles (soaps, beauty products, etc) on a case-by-case basis.

Bring an assortment of your homemade edible specialties (think pickles, preserves, baked goods, honey, granola, pasta, fruits, vegetables, herbs, spices... you name it!) to exchange for other handcrafted delights.
No money exchanges hands. Even your entrance to the event is FREE!

Eventbrite - Central Orange County Food Swap (sponsored by Slow Food OC)


You will also find additional details about the event, including downloadable forms, on the Eventbrite site.

For more information about the Food Swap Network, check out For questions regarding this event, feel free to contact Sarah Whittenberg at or 714-329-7521 cell/text on the day of the event.

Healthy Sack Lunch Challenge

Date: Saturday, October 19th

Time: 6 - 9 p.m.

Location: Pretend City Children's Museum, Irvine

Members and non-members welcome

Calling all restaurant chefs, culinary students, culinary instructors and catering companies...make lunch fun and healthy! Dr. Riba's Health Club invites you to participate in their upcoming Healthy Sack Lunch Challenge. You create a winning menu, Whole Foods Newport Beach will provide all of your groceries and ingredients for FREE, and then you work your culinary magic to prepare a winning entry and sample bites which will be served to all guests and a panel of celebrity judges at the event. In addition to bragging rights, there will be a $500 cash prize for 1st place, $250 for 2nd place, and $100 for 3rd place. For more info, see the flyer.


Dr. Riba's Health Club is a community-based organization designed to prevent and treat nutrition-related health problems in young children and their families. Dr. Riba's program is increasingly being recognized throughout Orange County as a promising approach to nutrition-related disorders, including diabetes and obesity. Learn more about Dr. Riba's Health Club by checking out the website.

Slow Food OC Dinner at Andrei's Conscious Cuisine

Date: Saturday October 26, 2013

Time: 4:00 PM

Location: Andrei's Conscious Cuisine, 2607 Main St Irvine

Members and non-members welcome

Join us for dinner at Andrei's. Chef Yves Fournier will be preparing a special fall dinner featuring the organic ingredients from several of his farmers and producers.

Andrei's is a non-profit restaurant that is raising awareness of the relevance of sustainability in the lives of their guests. Andrei's showcases the freshest local and organically grown produce, as well as naturally raised meats and sustainable seafood in their "Conscious Cuisine."

Andrei's incorporates only the finest ingredients into their recipes, utilizing seasonal fresh vegetables and fruits to provide unparalleled flavor and balanced nutrition. Their culinary style incorporates the cultural diversity of California cuisine, emphasizing Mediterranean flavors, while adding aspects of the "Slow Food" movement to their dishes.


Cost: $65.00

Purchase tickets at

Eventbrite - Slow Food Dinner at Andrei's Conscious Cuisine

Slow Food Edible Gifts Cooking Class 

Date: Sunday, November 10, 2013

Time: 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Location: Laguna Beach, address provided upon purchase of ticket

Members and non-members welcome

As the holiday season is approaching, Linda Elbert will be teaching a Slow Food Edible gifts class. Edible gifts are fun to make, inexpensive and great to have on hand as a hostess gift for the upcoming holidays or when an unexpected friend drops by your house. In this class, you will use locally grown seasonal herbs, fruits and vegetables to make gifts for the holidays or anytime. This class will be a mixture of hands on cooking and demonstration. Everyone who attends will get to take home a sample of each item made in class.

We will be learning how to make the following:

  • Salts and Spice Blends - at a salt, herb and spice bar you will have the opportunity to create your own salt and herb blends. Either follow a recipe or try your hand at bit of creative spice "mixology".
  • Port Pear and Thyme Conserve - Learn basic water bath canning technique to make this delicious condiment to serve with cheese, an accompaniment to holiday dishes or in a butternut squash soup (recipe provided).
  • Seasoned Lebneh in Olive Oil - Lebneh is a mediterranean cheese made from yogurt. Mixed with herbs and preserved in oil, it is an attractive gift and delicious appetizer.
  • Seeded Flatbread Crackers - Has anyone ever brought you homemade crackers? If so lucky you, they are a very special treat!
  • Caramel Corn for Grown Ups - Crunchy, salty, spicy and something for a sweet tooth.

Must sign for class to reserve your space. Class will have only 15 students maximum so sign up soon to reserve your spot.


Cost: Member: $45.00 Yet-to-be Member: $55.00

For more info and to buy tickets:

Eventbrite - Slow Food Edible Gifts Cooking Class

Slow Food OC Hands on Tamale Making Class to Celebrate Terra Madre Day

Date: Sunday, December 8, 2013

Time: 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Location: Laguna Culinary Arts, 845 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Members and non-members welcome

Chef Octavio Montoya will be teaching us how to make authentic tamales. Come join us as we celebrate Terra Madre Day, the holidays and the Mexican heritage of Orange County. Tamales are wrapped up like holiday gifts inside softened cornhusks and then steamed to perfection.This class will involve extensive hands-on cooking. As tamales are labor intensive, it will be a group effort to make these wonderful savory entrees that you can then taste and bring home to share with family and friends.


Everyone who attends will get to take home a sample of each item made in class. Recipe handouts will be included.

We will be learning how to make the following:

  • Chicken Tamales with Green Tomatillo Sauce
  • Beef Tamales with Red Chili Sauce
  • Gorditas - a small cake made with masa harina (nixtamalized cornflour) and stuffed with cheese, meat and other fillings.
  • Churros - sometimes referred to as a Spanish dougnut, is a fried-dough pastry snack.

You must sign up for the class to reserve your space. Class will have only 15 students maximum so sign up soon to reserve your spot.


Tickets will be for sale soon.

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