Slow Food, founded in 1986, is an international organization whose aim is to protect the pleasures of the table from the homogenization of modern fast food and life. Though a variety of initiatives it promotes gastronomic culture, develops taste education, conserves agricultural biodiversity and protects traditional foods at risk of extinction. It now boasts over 100,000 members in 153 countries.

Slow Food Waitakere is registered as a charitable entity. Registration Number: CC38263, please click here to read our Rules and Regulations

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Polish Easter Egg Workshop Wednesday 16 April 7pm to 9pm

Preserving and celebrating our traditions is at the heart of Slow Food.

 Celebrate a Polish Tradition and Create Beautiful Eggs for Easter

An Invitation from Regina

The Polish tradition is that after fasting for Lent for 40 days a family makes a basket of food to be blessed at Holy Saturday’s Mass.  There is a quiet element of competitiveness with the baskets with most parishioner’s, especially the women, checking out the baskets to judge who they believe has the best one.

The contents of the Easter basket are eaten by the family on Sunday morning, so everything one consumes for breakfast needs to be in the basket, this includes: decorated Pisanki (eggs), kielbasa (Polish sausage), a butter lamb, salt, a babka (pound cake from a moulded tin) or a sweet yeast cake.  A Pussy Willow branch or toy chick is also in a lot of baskets as this is one of the first trees to show signs of the impending and long awaiting Spring and both are a sign of new life.

Every year our family has made an Easter basket with many friends joining us for the decorating of the Pisanki.
We extend a warm welcome to all to join us this Easter!

The Details
Where: Oratia - address available on registration
When: Wednesday April 16th 7pm to 9pm
Cost: $5 Members $15 Guests
RSVP: Anutosh 8349909

Sunday, March 30, 2014

A few images from Glen Eden Food Festival

Last Saturday Slow Food Waitakere took part to the first Food Festival in Glen Eden, a community led festival organized by several local groups with the help of Auckland Council and the Waitakere Ranges Local Board. 

Outdoors and indoors stalls entertained several hundred visitors with World food, free cooking demos, informations about community gardens, seed and composting, food sharing and more. Live music and entertainment for the children were enjoyed by all, and our own Slow Food Waitakere stall also had a game for the little ones: guess what kind of fruit is in the bag and win (a pear and an apple). Everyone was a winner! Our committee member Regina did a wonderful cooking demo with a Pacific Beat theme. She prepared Vermicelli Chicken Lemon Salad and Oka i’a, raw fish salad.

Thank you to all the volunteers who helped making this event so successful, it was a pleasure working with you!

Friday, March 14, 2014

March Event: Glen Eden Food Festival, Free Entry

Slow Food Waitakere has been working very hard with other local organisations and the Waitakere Ranges Local Board to bring a good, clean and fair food festival to Glen Eden. Please join us and celebrate with us on Saturday 22 of March!

Free Entry!

Come and enjoy:

Stalls from different local community groups to help you with all your gardening needs, from composting to free seeds to community gardening and even a produce swap. 

Free cooking demos by experts to show you how to prepare yummy and healthy food, preserve and bottle produce, make cheese etc., including Regina from Slow Food Waitakere dishing up some fashionable 'Pacific Beat' dishes (free tastings). Scroll down for the full demo timetable.

Live music and entertainment plus lots of kids' activities, including face painting and give-aways at our Slow Food Waitakere table.

Hot and yummy hot food from around the world cooked by the New Lynn Night Market WISE Collective Hub (former refugee women) for your Saturday lunch.

Glen Eden Food Festival Cooking Demonstrations

10:30-11:10    Cheesemaking workshop: Halloumi and Ricotta with Virginia Best and Madeleine Collins 
Madeleine Collins and Virginia Best will demonstrate making ricotta and halloumi at home using simple ingredients.  They will demonstrate how to cut the curd and press cheese.  You don’t need any fancy equipment to make cheese and this workshop will give you the confidence to make your own cheese at home. 

11:15- 11:45     Preserving talk with Julie Craig of Oak and Thistle

Julie Craig lives self-sustainably in an urban environment and has done for many years. With a young family to provide for, Julie has learned the arts of cooking, preserving, jamming & jellying, herb growing and their uses, home gardening and livestock maintenance. 

In this workshop Julie will speak about many aspects of preserving the harvest, from fruits and vegetables to herbs, extracts, and more.  Julie will teach you what you need to get started and give some great ideas for making your own basic equipment.  She’ll go through the steps of making healthy and tasty edible foods to keep on hand so that you can preserve at home.  There will be an opportunity to see examples of preserves and more, and have a taste of some of Julie’s deliciously preserved harvest. 

11:50-12:20     Indian Vegetarian Cooking demonstration with Indira Vallabh

In this fun and informative workshop, you’ll come away feeling confident about preparing delicious, authentic, and healthy Indian dishes at home.  All dishes are gluten free and recipes will be provided.  Indira Vallabh is an experienced Indian cook and has a popular Indian Vegetarian Food stall at the Grey Lynn Farmers Market.  Indira will demonstrate a delicious vegetarian curry and either a raita or chutney as an accompaniment.  Tastings will be available at the end of the class. 

12:25-12:55     Pacific Cooking demonstration with Regina Wypych of Pacific Heartbeat 
Regina Wypych of Pacific Heartbeat will bring a Pacific Island flavour to the Glen Eden Food Festival with two simple, delicious, and heart-healthy recipes.  The first dish, Vermicelli Chicken Lemon Salad, is a fresh zingy Pacific chicken salad.  The second will be a tasty Oka i’a, raw fish salad.  You will have a chance to taste both of these dishes, and recipes will be available to take home. 

1:00-1:30    Simple Meals at Home with Peter Clifton-Sprigg of Vision West
Learn how to prepare “Pan Fried Moroccan Chicken Breast served with Mini Rostis and a Seasonal Dressed Salad” with chef Peter Clifton-Sprig of VisionWest. This impressive dish is cheap, fast, easy, nutritious, awesome tasting and beautifully presented, with lots of possible variations to try out at home. Ingredients will include fresh raw beetroot, carrots and parsnips or golden kumara, fresh chicken with a deliciously fresh seasonal salad including green, red, orange and yellow vegetables.

See you there!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Slow Food Waitakere Summer Brunch at the amazing Cafe Ethos.

Last Saturday Slow Food Waitakere members and friends enjoyed a wonderful brunch at Ethos, a new Vegetarian cafe in West Auckland set up by iconic shop East West Organics. As to be expected the food at Ethos is also organic and there are plenty of Vegan dishes, plus raw food, gluten free choices, and salads and juices made with the produce grown in the cafe's own garden centre. Everybody was blow away with the vitality and quality of the food and the lovely setting.
Korin, the store manager, talked about the philosophy behind Ethos, East West Organics and heirloom seeds. We ended the morning with a bit of shopping in the store adjacent to the cafe, and a smile on our faces. :-)

Ethos is at East West Organics - 34D Portage Rd, New Lynn, Auckland.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Summer Brunch Sunday February 23rd

Slow Food Waitakere  Summer Brunch at the amazing Cafe Ethos.
Sunday February 23rd at 10.30am
Enjoy delicious healthy ethical food. 
Shop in the Organic Superstore.
Discover the Organic Garden Centre. 
Celebrate the pleasure of good food and your contribution keeping it "good".
And fingers crossed we will have someone from East West to talk to us about this amazing business. 
The address 
East West Organics - 34D Portage Rd New Lynn.
Anutosh: 8349909

Celebrating the New Zealand Experience .......from our Slow Food Prescott Arizona Visitors

In November 2013 we hosted Molly and Gary from Slow Food Prescott, Arizona at the start of their 6 week New Zealand adventure.
We were inspired by the work Molly is doing with Slow Food and Gary's environmental activism - you can check out Slow Food Prescott to find out all about it!
Well, they loved New Zealand and Molly has shared that love with us - check it out below.
It is a great story.

Molly with Fi and Anutosh from Slow Food Waitakere

Thanks New Zealand by Molly 
After touring your country, 7000 km (yes, we drove too much), I want you to know that food at the basic level is much better than ours.  First and mostly, your animals are raised on natural feed--grass.  Our cattle, dairy cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys and even farm raised fish, are mostly in CAFOs, confined animal feeding operations, pens or cages where they are fed genetically modified corn, soy, alfalfa and by-products.  The result is a very unnatural diet, sick and depressed animals, and resultant threats to human health.  In addition, the restrictions on genetically modified crops and ingredients in processed foods are light years ahead of the US.  We are fighting with Monsanto and other chemical giants just to get labeling. They are fighting back with lawyers and money-- lawsuits, buying lawmakers, and massive advertising campaigns to convince people that GMO's are absolutely harmless AND natural AND no one needs to know if they are eating them or not. 

We were greatly impressed with the diversity, quantity and prosperity of small farms.  America is corporate Big Ag.  You can drive for miles through farmland and only see dingy worker's quarters. We were impressed to see and visit quite nice homes and well educated, worldly farmers. I believe this makes for healthier, more sustainable food production.  It is much harder to convince corporations to make decisions in favor of health and the environment.

And, one more thing, we are convinced that Kiwis are happier and more satisfied with their lives.  That is our overall impression.  Gas station attendants, good old boys in the fish camp, waitresses, ticket takers, little old ladies, scruffy guys on the beach, young men on their day off from working at the Frontera dairy...all seemed pretty cherry.  I am sad to say that a black cloud of anger hangs over many Americans.  The middle class is being undermined by the top 1%. The rich are getting rich and the poor getting poorer and the middle class dropping. The poor are blamed for their condition. Medical care is hard to access and bankrupts many (hopefully this is changing).  Education grows more out of reach and expensive, resulting in huge loan debts to the banks. This has not always been the case.  In the 60’s,  70’s and 80’s when we were getting started health insurance was cheap and covered everything, and higher education was free or low cost.  We came through the times and as a result are quite comfortable now.  I’m afraid that is not the case for young people in this country today. Enough said...Gary and I are working to keep a Kiwi attitude.

We had some wonderful eating experiences, great ingredients mostly cooked out of our camper--
Your dairy products are wonderful.  Grass fed is the gold standard in the US and very hard to find. Fantastic cheese, butter and cream.  We enjoyed that.

 Molly and Gary with Reuben and family from  Slow Food Te Hiku

MISCELLANEOUS FOOD EXPERIENCES:Whangeroa-- Oysters and chips at the Marlin Hotel.
Cable Bay-- fresh strawberry stand on the beach.
Fresh oysters, smoked mullett, and tua tua dig on 90 Mile Beach with Rueben and family
Solar powered espresso cart on the way to Cape Reinga
Macadamia nuts and delicious lamb, home baked bread with Sue and Brian on the Coromandel
Meat pies and good pastries with Flat White in all the little Cafes located in all the odd corners
Venison sausage and lamb salami from farm store in Aithol, Highway 6
Genovese pesto and home made muesli at Ron and Lesley's
Rabbit Island fruit stand-- walnuts and apples near Nelson
Founder's Beer in Nelson, Mike's organic Imperial Stout in Motonui
Takaka fruit stands
Te Anu butchery and fish market and blue cod fish and chips
Raglan fish market. King Fish.
Crayfish and Abalone at beach stand in Kaikora.  Next trip I'm going to eat more of that.
Fleur's Place in Moeraki
Omaru Farmer's Markety.  Jersey Bennys.
Campground at Mt. Thomas, out of Christchurch, was full of ripe cherries
Campground and beaches at Cape Campbell are full of wild silverbeet.  Gary found a coconut on the beach. Fresh and delicious.  Where did that come from?
Smoked fish from many sources.  Fresh rig, elephant fish, blue cod, red snapper, king fish, scallops, hoki, and many I can't remember
Blenheim Farmer's Market
Manuka honey

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Slow Summer Brunch at Cafe Ethos

Come along to our Summer Brunch at the amazing Cafe Ethos
in the  new East West Organics Super Store at New Lynn. 
Vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, ethical and delicious ......
Check out all the details below. 

Slow Food Waitakere  Summer Brunch at the amazing Cafe Ethos.
Sunday February 23rd at 10.30am
Enjoy delicious healthy ethical food. 
Shop in the Organic Superstore.
Discover the Organic Garden Centre. 
Celebrate the pleasure of good food and your contribution keeping it "good".
And fingers crossed we will have someone from East West to talk to us about this amazing business. 
The address 
East West Organics - 34D Portage Rd New Lynn.
Anutosh: 8349909

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Community Gardens in Christchurch, New Zealand

I visited these two community gardens and I was truly impressed with the work and produce. These are not communal gardens where members have individual allotments, but everybody works together in the whole garden under the guidance of a garden manager and senior volunteers, to maximize the use of land and the outcome of the crops. The social benefits are huge, not only for the food that members can take home, but also for networking, learning and spending time with other people in the local community.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

January 2014 event: Sunnybrook Farm Garden Visit

Today at Slow Food Waitakere we visited James Brookman and Rebecca Russo's inspiring garden in Sunnybrook Farm, Clevedon. We had a wonderful time touring the extensive veggie garden and the fruit orchard, seeing the compost heaps, and meeting the cute goats. Thank you very much James and Rebecca for opening your garden for us, this was our first event for 2014 and it will inspire us for our own gardens, and to work towards more involvement in the local community gardens. Here are some images:

And after the garden tour we went to nearby Clevedon Farmers Market for shopping and eating.

Photos by Alessandra Zecchini ©

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Sunnybrook Farm Garden Visit

Sunnybrook Farm extensive garden, designed and nurtured by James and Rebecca, is truly inspiring and full of diverse produce.

Happy New Year to everyone! 

If you love gardening and growing your own food you will be thrilled with our January event: a visit to 

James Brookman and Rebecca Russo's amazing garden in Sunnybrook Farm, Clevedon.

James and Rebecca have been in NZ for 13 years and before that they lived in LA where Rebecca grew most of her food in a city garden. The vegetable garden at Sunnybrook is about 5 years old and the couple designed and then built all of the raised boxes and pergolas themselves. They also planted several fruit trees - plums, figs, apples, citrus, etc. in addition to the 2000+ nashi pear orchard trees that were already on the property.

Sunday 26 January, 10am-11am. After the garden visit we will go to Clevedon Farmers Market for lunch (optional). Numbers are limited so please rsvp to Alessandra ( by Friday 24 January if you like to join us, and to receive directions.

And for those who feel like staying a bit longer  Sculpture in the Gardens Show is now on at the Botanical Gardens in Manurewa and at 1pm on Sunday one of the well known artists, Jim Wheeler, will be leading people through the gardens talking about the amazing sculptures on show. 

See you next Sunday!

Sunnybrook Farm
250 Papakura-Clevedon Road
Clevedon, Auckland 2582
New Zealand


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