In my dreams, I’m a brilliant host.
You can drop by my house and I’ll whip up something simple, yet perfect. I’ll clip something from my garden, pull a jar from my pantry and slip something out of the freezer and before you know it the airs smells buttery and I’m serving you a warm mug of tea or glass of chilled wine. And the whole time I’m comfortably chatting away with you about anything and everything.
So I guess it’s possible that you’re reading this blog but don’t have any idea who I am or what I’m doing this year… which is crazy because I feel like I must have told everyone on the planet by now.
Top Level: I’m spending the year studying how to build resilient communities (and as of late, that exploration has drifted into the food world, yay!) while designing my own education at Experience Institute (now accepting applications for 2016!)
More: If you want to know a little bit more about me and why I’m tiptoe-ing into the food world as I explore community, I wrote the following article for my program.
For almost 4 years, I lived in rural Southern Vermont.
There, I had the unexpected pleasures of being able to grow my own food and of having friends who owned small farms. It was easy to make my husband a plate of pasta and know that the tomatoes and basil were from my garden, that I’d made the cheese from milk from Laurie’s farm and that the eggs in the noodles were a gift from Ellen Stimson’s chickens. I knew that the plate of food was made with love at every stage.
Think about the best meal you’ve ever had…
A meal where the chef was sharing a little piece of their spirit, culture and passion with you. Where you bit into something so amazing you insisted everyone else at the table had to taste and share that visceral experience. Where the hours flew by and conversation mingled with flavors and textures and laughter… These are the kinds of meals to be had at The Depanneur.
Lisa Kates, partner and co-founder of Building Roots, spends her days fighting for food equity in Toronto. She moves from complicated communities to policy discussions and from community kitchens to urban gardens yet she always manages to keep her core mission in mind: ensuring underserved communities of Toronto have access to fresh food.
The other day I got to chat with Hassel Aviles. If you’re from Toronto you’ve probably heard of her… she was one of the masterminds behind the Toronto Underground Market – a social food market designed to create a platform for budding food entrepreneurs, chefs and home cooks to test new food ideas [closed now but you can see some of the work here] and a founder of La Carnita – a restaurant that pairs street art with street food. Right now, she’s the Culinary Director at Feast – a new app that helps hook hungry people up with chef-made meals with local, organic ingredients and delivered in minutes.
Laurie Featherstone, of Featherstone Two Wheels Green Delivery, has been helping small businesses get fantastic local, organic and wild ingredients to your favorite Torontonian restaurants and food purveyors since 2008… and she does it all on her bike.