Slow down, eat well |

Slow down, eat well

Billy McCullough
Special to the Sierra Sun
Billy McCullough completes an entree at the Dragonfly restaurant in Truckee.

Do you enjoy the pleasures of good food? Have you noticed seasonal food tastes better? Ever feel like days are going by too fast and we have gotten away from the importance of sitting down with friends and family to eat? Well, you are not alone.

There is an international movement spearheading the reawakening of the importance of conscious eating. This international group, has smaller, local chapters throughout the world. It is called Slow Food. A local chapter, Slow Food Lake Tahoe, has recently formed.

Slow Food Lake Tahoe will host a tasting event pairing California olive oil and wines from the Truckee River Winery, Friday Nov. 30, 6 to 8 p.m. Cost is $35 for Slow Food members, $45 for non members. The event will be held at the winery, 10061 South River St., Truckee. A Certified Olive Oil Taster and dietitian Betsy Taylor capture the artesian spirit of California foods.

The mission statement for Slow Food is, “Slow Food is good, clean, fair food. We believe that the food we eat should taste good: That it should be produced in a clean way that does not harm the environment, animal welfare or our health; and that food producers should receive fair compensation for their work, and that all people should have access to this good clean food.”

The main principle of the movement is to eat food grown locally and in season. It reconnects people with the food chain ” from field to table. By doing this, people will be eating fresh food, higher in nutrients with better taste and supporting a local economy.

Northern Californians are blessed with an abundance of local products. The Sierra Valley has farms and ranches which produce vegetables, fruits and meats.

We live within 100 miles of the largest produce production area in the world. Our choices are bountiful throughout the year. Slow Food encourages people to seek out the farmers, have a relationship with what they are putting on their plates, and to reap the benefits of tasty, health food. Slow Food helps one rediscover the joys of eating and understand the importance of caring where the food comes from, who makes it and how it is made.

In the United States, we are used to getting what we want when we want it. Between fast food and grocery stores that stock almost every kind of produce year round, we have lost touch with the heritage of food. We are accustomed to blueberries from Chile in the middle of the winter and apples from New Zealand in the spring. These products aren’t as fresh or flavorful, and the amount of energy spent transporting them is massive.

Slow Food wants people to become “co-producers,” not consumers of food. Being informed makes us part of and partner in the production process.

Through information seminars where people meet farmers and taste products to informal theme gatherings like “Tomato Night” or “Local Artesian Cheese Night,” Slow Food wants to make the dining experience pleasurable. For information contact Lisa Boudreau at 308-0753.

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