Thursday, July 30, 2009

Chefs in the garden

There's a new initiative at Haliburton Farm, a gardening and cooking school called Terralicious. Yesterday Harry and I attended one of their Chefs in the Garden event. We did it as an early anniversary thing and also to support our neighbours. From 11:00 am to 1:00 pm we took part in a tour of the organic garden, a cooking demonstration by a local chef, and a gourmet lunch--complete with wine.

It was fun to walk across the road and try something new. The kitchen in the once decrepit house has been transformed into an elegant demonstration kitchen, complete with mirror above the cooking area and a camera over the stove connected to a flat-screen TV. The chef was a young man who owns two restaurants in Victoria and who focuses on using fresh, local organic and sometimes raw food.

Here's Cosmo demonstrating his sprouted almond pate, which we had wrapped in a kale leaf (I think) and presented beautifully.

He also took tiny patty pan squash fresh from the garden and sauted it in sage and lavender butter. Another course included tiny purple and white potatoes with artisan cheese garnished with calendula flowers. Then there was a dish of local spot prawns in a curry sauce. (I'm beginning to sound like one of those waiters in an upscale restaurant, aren't I?--Sorry!)

Lunch was served on white linen cloths set with flowers in the shade. There were about a dozen people taking part, all ages. I sat beside a lovely young woman who came with her little baby. The older women in the group had a great time holdling the baby while she ate her lunch.

It was a wonderful to sit down with new people and talk and enjoy special food on a summer's afternoon. Here's the dessert--berries with a kind of pink sauce made of raw cashews, and just look at those little violas. Beautiful and delicious.

I liked learning about Cosmos's philosophy of eating and cooking, using fresh, local ingredients. One thing he talked about was an 80 / 20 ratio of eating: 80% nutrition (read greens and salads) and 20% comfort food. It makes good sense to me.


  1. Well, that didn't make me any less jealous! What a nice way to spend a summer lunch. I love those little peas lined up in their pod.

  2. Sorry Stephanie. :-( But y'know it's hard not to talk about this special place. Yes, those peas are adorable, not to mention yummy.


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