Slow The Fork Down

Slow The Fork Down

I’ve been thinking a lot about the word slow lately.  Slow doesn’t come naturally to me.  I drive fast, walk fast, talk fast…you get the idea. But, since becoming a part of Slow food, I’ve been thinking more about a slower life. When I was a kid, my sister and I had a tape cassette called Music Machine.  One of our favorite songs was called Patience (Herbert the Snail).  Have fun reading these lyrics:

There was a snail called Herbert who was so very slow
He caused a lot of traffic jams wherever he would go
The ants were always getting mad and the beetles, 
they would fume
But Herb would always poke along and sing this little tune

Have patience, have patience
Don’t be in such a hurry
When you get impatient, you only start to worry
Remember, remember that God is patient, too
And think of all the times when others have to wait for you

When Herbert was much younger, he often got in trouble
Forgetting that he was a snail, he did things on the double
He’d crash through every spider web and with crickets he’d collide
‘Til one day Herbert’s father took his speeding son aside


As you can well imagine, there’s a moral to this tale
Some of you may find yourselves behind a creeping snail
So if you get impatient and you’re easily disturbed
Think about this little song and take a tip from Herb

Patience (Herbert the Snail) on YouTube

Slow food represents an entire life style; it’s not just specific to the food we eat.  If we are able to slow our lives down, even if it’s just a little bit at a time, I truly believe we will not only be able to enjoy a higher quality life, but we won’t be as apt to miss the truly amazing things, people, and experiences that are all around us.  Below is an excerpt from Slow Food USA on how to Go Slow. Slow Food USA

Go Slow in Your Life

  1. Buy whole ingredients. Cook them. Eat them.
    2. Avoid processed stuff with long ingredient lists. Eat real food.
    3. Grow some of your own food. Start in your backyard, community garden or windowsill.
    4. If you eat meat, choose grass-fed and if you eat poultry, choose free-range.
    5. Whenever possible, know the story behind the food you buy.

Go Slow in Your Community

  1. Cook and eat with others – not just family and friends. Bring new people and perspectives to the table.
    2. Join a community garden, volunteer in a local school garden, and grow food with others.
    3. Connect with your local Slow Food chapter for events and community projects.
    4. Shake the hand that feeds you. Meet the people who grow your food. Shop at a farmers market, visit a farm or buy shares from a farm that offers a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.
    5. Learn about your local or regional food history and cultural dishes.

These are great places to start!  Try to implement one or two changes here and there, or come up with some of your own personal “slow goals”.

In the words of Ozzy Osbourne:

Slow down you’re moving way to fast

Slow down you know you’ll never last

Slow down your haste is making waste

Slow down and join the human race

slow down


“We are enslaved by speed and have all succumbed to the same insidious virus: Fast Life, which disrupts our habits, pervades the privacy of our homes and forces us to eat Fast Foods… A firm defense of quiet material pleasure is the only way to oppose the universal folly of Fast Life… May suitable doses of guaranteed sensual pleasure and slow, long-lasting enjoyment preserve us from the contagion of the multitude who mistake frenzy for efficiency. Our defense should begin at the table with Slow Food. Let us rediscover the flavors and savors of regional cooking and banish the degrading effects of Fast Food.”(Excerpt from the Official Slow Food Manifesto, as published in “Slow Food: A Case for Taste” in 2001)


Have you ever wanted to meet your local farmers?

I have always loved food, I mean really LOVED food. I feel like I’ve also pretty much always known the difference between good food and bad food, but there came a time when I actually started paying attention.  Wait, why does this tomato taste like Styrofoam when a couple of months ago, at the same restaurant, it melted in my mouth?

It wasn’t until I started my own garden that it began to dawn on me that there are seasons, and certain food grows in specific seasons.  It’s so easy to forget this since we live in a day where our grocery stores are pretty much stocked year round because the items have been shipped there from faraway places.  It would take another blog post to discuss what happens on that journey from the farm to our stores and why most of that produce is tasteless!

However, like me, it may not be until you’ve eaten a tomato from your garden or farmer’s market that you realize the difference and how amazing local food in season can be!

So, when I first started recognizing this seemingly simple truth, I started to research.  Where can I get good food?  I remember reading over and over again, “Get to know your farmer!”  I was so frustrated!  How am I supposed to meet my farmer?!!  Even at the farmer’s market, if the actual farmer is even working their stand, it’s so busy and crowded and loud.  And what do I ask them?

Have any of you ever felt this way too?

It was around this time that I stumbled upon the Slow Food USA website  (Click here).  I was immediately intrigued.  Since childhood I’ve had an aversion to Fast Food, so Slow Food sounded like the opposite of that…..I’m listening.  I checked out my local chapter, Slow Food Yolo (Click here).  Since Yolo County is in the middle of farm land, Slow Food Yolo’s events seemed to center around just that, the local farmers!I went on a tour at The Cloverleaf Farms (Click here) and the farmer, Emma Torbert, showed us her crops, told us what it’s like to be a farmer, explained her irrigation challenges during a drought, taught us how to recognize and pick ripe fruit, and then sat down and ate peach crisp and homemade peach ice cream made with her peaches, that were picked THAT DAY!  Side note….I have never tasted such perfect, juicy, sweet peaches in my life.  Could. Not. Stop. Eating .Peaches!!!!

After this tour, I was super excited.  I had met one of “my” farmers and she was really really cool!!!  I saw the farm; I picked the fruit and ate it.  It was 5 miles from my house.  I wanted more!


The next tour I attended was at Henry’s Bullfrog Bees and PURE honey (Click here).  We met the beekeeper and his family, we saw how they extracted the honey and he explained the business of bees and pollination.  We toured their bee and butterfly flower garden and saw an educational hive that they take to schools.  Turkovich Winery (Click here) and Winters Cheese Co (Click here) provided wine and cheese tasting and Henry’s family made gorgeous honey inspired appetizers.  We all left with a complimentary mini jar of honey.  Now, at the Farmer’s Market, I feel really good about purchasing Henry’s honey!  I’ve met them and talked to them, I’ve been to their farm, I’ve seen their process, and even met a couple of the bees, all within 20 miles of my house!


These are just two examples of the many fun and educational events we did last year.


Are you wondering how you can get involved too?

I know, I know it’s totally exciting right?  Here are some of the upcoming events we have planned for this year as well as some events where we are partnering with other great organizations that we believe in and support.  Some of the dates are still pending.  Please come back and check the calendar as the dates will be updated and linked to the calendar.

  • Tour de cluck (Click here) 5/21
  • Farm to College  6/2
  • The Cloverleaf Farm (Click here) 6/25
  • Tomato Festival (Click here) 7/16
  • Hoes Down Harvest Festival (Click here) 10/1-10/2
  • Indian Cooking and Story Telling with Meera Klein, author of My Mother’s Kitchen (Click here)




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