Dorothy Peterson February 7, 1940 – April 7, 2016

It is with a heavy heart that we at Slow Food Yolo say goodbye to our dear friend and co-leader, Dorothy Peterson. Dorothy passed away peacefully in her sleep at home on April 7, 2016, surrounded by her loving family and friends.

Dorothy retired in 1999, after 37 years of teaching, though everyone knows she never fully retired. Always a teacher at heart, immediately upon retiring, she continued her passion for children and teaching and created Davis Farm to School. Currently, every school in Davis, California has a garden for teaching and the program is now being implemented countywide. It is in large part because of Dorothy’s tireless efforts and commitment to what she believed in that there is in place a dynamic program which supports the school district in their goals to provide farm and garden-based education, increase farm fresh foods in school meals, and reduce solid waste through recycling and composting programs.

In 2013, Dorothy volunteered to co-lead Slow Food Yolo, in order to continue toward educating our community about good food. Dorothy’s passion, joy for life, and tireless work has touched so many lives. She will be greatly missed and never forgotten.

There will be a memorial service for Dorothy at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 15, at the Davis Community Church. The family is planning a further celebration of the life and work of Dorothy Peterson at the Park Winters, date and time to be announced. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that any tax exempt remembrances in Dorothy’s honor be made to the Davis Farmers Market Alliance for the Davis Farm to School Fund, and sent to the Davis Farm to School Alliance, P.O. Box 1813, Davis, CA 95617.

You can learn more about Dorothy at the Davis Enterprise HERE

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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!

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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!

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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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The Feast:

mead postewr

A Mediterranean inspired menu is being created by Ann Evans, author of the Davis Farmer’s Cookbook, and Kathi Riley, food consultant and past chef at Zuni Cafe, San Francisco. We will begin the evening with mead cocktails at 6:00pm. Candlelight and music by the Jonny Gold Trio will set the relaxed atmosphere. A four course meal will follow and we will end the evening with the ultimate ‘after dinner mead flight’ led by legendary Darrell Corti.

Mead, a fermented blend of honey, water and often fruits, yeast, or spices, has been dated to about 7000 BCE. Ceramic shards found in Jiahu, Henan Province, China held a mead-like residue according to Dr. Patrick McGovern, the leading authority on ancient alcoholic beverages. According to the BBC the number of meaderies in the United States has grown in the last ten years from 30-40 meaderies to over 250.

Early Bee Special:

35 dinner participants will also have the opportunity to sign up and experience a honey tasting at 5:15PM before dinner begins. The tasting will take place in the Sensory Theater, Robert Mondavi Institute Sensory Building. Amina Harris, Director of the Center will lead this very special program. Space is limited and free with dinner reservation. First come first serve basis. Please email Liz Luu at luu@caes.ucdavis.edu if you would like to sign up for this event.

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CELEBRATE THE HARVEST AT SÉKA HILLS

It’s harvest time…

and the Séka Hills Olive Mill and Tasting Room invites the public to experience the fresh flavors of the olive harvest and milling season. Beginning in mid-October, with the first milling, and continuing through November, visitors
can see the Mill in action and taste the freshest of olive oils, the prized Olio Nuovo.

Owned and operated by the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation, the Tasting Room offers an insider’s view of how the Tribe’s olives are grown, milled and finished into world-class Séka Hills extra virgin olive oils. Guided tastings of Séka Hills olive oil, wine, honey and nuts offer visitors a chance to experience the growing line of fine agricultural products from the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation.

Signaling the start of harvest, Olio Nuovo is bottled in limited amounts directly after milling. Its fresh, bright and bold flavor celebrates the season and is meant to be enjoyed within a few months of harvest. Most of the new harvest oils are “settled” for several weeks before bottling.

Special festivities culminate in November with the Olive Crush Festival and open house on Saturday, November 7 and the Olio Nuovo Dinner on Saturday, November 21.

Séka Hills Harvest Happenings

October 24, 1–4pm – Olive themed
painting class with artist Sheri Neilson.
Purchase tickets in advance: 530.796.2819.

October 25, 2–6pm – Capay Valley Vision
presents “Taste of Capay.” Purchase tickets
in advance: 916.475.6408.

November 7, 11am–5pm – Olive Crush
Festival: Mill Tours, Olio Nuovo, Tasting
of Séka Hills products, wine by the glass,
local vendors, live music, book signing.

November 21, 2–6pm – Olio Nuovo
Dinner: Cooking Demonstration, Special
Menu by Chef Casey Willard, Mill Tour.

Reserve and purchase tickets in advance:
530.796.2810

download the PDF for more information

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Premier Mushrooms Farm Tour & Lunch

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Purchase tickets HERE

Please join Slow Food Yolo for a unique experience touring the Premiere Mushrooms in Colusa. Premier Mushrooms is located Colusa California. It is one of the county’s fastest growing ag-related industries and is counted among the county’s largest private sector employers. At Premier Mushrooms the product is composted, grown, processed and distributed. The composting and pasteurization processes take place in a fully enclosed wharf area, a process which provides several benefits which can be seen in the final product. There are currently 48 growing rooms at the farm, but the estimated November 1, 2013 completion of the farms expansion will increase that number to 64 rooms.

After the tour, we will enjoy a delicious meal featuring Premiere Mushrooms prepared by our host Cynthia. This is a zero-waste event, so guests will bring your own tableware, cloth napkins and beverage of choice, we will provide wine glasses (no paper or plastics please).

Meet at 2:00 at 510 10th Street, Colusa

Tickets $20

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Mid-Winter Beekeeper’s Feast – A Taste of Mead and Honey

 

Mid-Winter Beekeeper’s Feast

A Taste of Mead and Honey

A Green Table Event sponsored by Les Dames d’Escoffier, San Francisco
Menu Designed by Ann M. Evans
Catered by the Buckhorn Steakhouse, Winters, Calif.

Join us for this delicious dinner, wonderful live music, and excellent company to support the work of the honey and pollination center. This is our second annual feast and seats are filling up fast. Now’s the perfect time to register and start the new year with a taste of mead and honey. -Amina Harris
Director, Honey and Pollination Center
at the Robert Mondavi Institute

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For more information, please click here

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Slow Food at the Hoes Down

Join Slow Food Yolo for a cocktail hour celebrating Yolo County wines and agriculture. In the spirit of regional fare, appetizers made with endive from CA Endive Farm and chicken from ChowDown Farm will be served.  Seven regional wineries will be pouring wines for your enjoyment: Route3, Carvalho Family Winery, Berryessa Gap, Taber Ranch Vineyard, Capay Valley Vineyard, Matchbook Wine Company and Turkovich Wines.

Proceeds from this event will benefit agricultural education in Yolo County. The Slow Food Yolo mission is to promote and educate the community on local food that is good, clean and fair.

Tickets are $10 in advance through Brown Paper Tickets or $15 day of the event. Ticket price is in addition to the regular admission charge to get into the Hoes Down event.



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Click Here to visit the Brown Paper Tickets event page.



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