Countdown to culinary delights…

The Slow Food Asheville “Mountain Fire” Terra Madre Fundraiser is just a month away now.

Sunswept will be hosting the event on September 18, which will include a homegrown, scratch-made, medieval fantasy of fire-kissed foods, with a slow-roasted Sunswept Berkshire pig as the centerpiece.

The fundraiser will help eight WNC organic farmers and slow food producers (two from Sunswept) with travel expenses so they may attend the international Slow Food “Terra Madre” conference in Italy this October.

We hope to have 200 people attend. So, a big event! Tickets are $45 and will be available soon on the Slow Food Asheville website.

Many hands are going into bringing this about. Each of the WNC Terra Madre delegates is contributing time, materials, and talent. Our guest chef, Mark Rosenstein (founder of The Market Place restaurant), will be soliciting local, slow-food-minded restaurants to contribute additional side dishes. Many friends of Sunswept will be pitching in for the extensive food prep … we will even butcher the pig and some 30 chickens here on the farm.

Check out the planned menu, and let your taste-bud imagination run wild…

Slow Roasted Porcetta
whole Berkshire pig, stuffed with young chickens and hickory-roasted overnight,
served with wild fruit dipping sauces

Chargrilled Chicken
seasoned with the devil’s own fiery chili pepper rub

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Riot of Fall Salad
with Cider Dressing

Whole Wheat Wood Oven Breads
served with roasted red bell pepper spread & herbed egg salad

Spiced Apple Sauce
infused with autumn flavors

Ember-Roasted Seasonal Vegetables
Potatoes, Garlic and Butternut Squash

Wood-Fire Baked Ratatouille
Gratin of eggplant, tomatoes & sweet peppers

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Desserts
Sicilian Cannoli
Rustic Apple Tarts
Honey Ice Cream

The fundraiser will also include a silent auction of many fine, local crafts and services including several of Dory’s handmade jewelry pieces.

Before dinner begins at 5:30 p.m., folks will be able to preview the auction items and tour the farm, starting at 3 p.m.

We will be pressing fresh cider for the dinner that afternoon as well. Our press is a beautiful antique from the 1800s that we’ve added pedal-power to. Folks will be invited to give it a whirl themselves if they like.

There will be live music featuring friend CaroMia during the meal.

For even more details, check out the press release article we’re sending out to all the local media.

In addition to supporting the Slow Food philosophy and wishing to bring back all sorts of useful learning from Terra Madre that we can use here on the farm, Sunswept decided to contribute heavily to this event because it is also supporting the formation of a Spring Creek Food Group.

Seven of the eight WNC Terra Madre delegates are in Madison County and are in the process of exploring collaboration as a “food community.”

These types of food groups are often called Presidia. They are collections of artisanal food producers that collaborate in various ways to let small producers be more economically viable. Italy has some of the most long-lasting and successful Presidia in the world, and we are all hoping to learn from their example as one of the many objective in going to Terra Madre.

We don’t know what form the Spring Creek Food Group’s collaboration will take. Often, these groups form around a single type of food, but our group is quite varied — more joined by geography as well as dedication to organic, sustainable production methods.

So, this is all very new, fresh, and unformed as yet, but we’re very excited about starting the ball rolling and eager to see what shape things take.

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