An AGM & pot luck dinner were held at Joan and Tony’s place in Titirangi. The event was well attended and superbly catered by our very own SF members. See recipes below. Photos will be posted shortly.

Annual Report May 15

The year began with Alessandra moving from being our convivium leader to a committee member. We are all grateful for her passionate work in initiating and growing our convivium. A small group plan our events and we welcome any of you to join us in the coming year. This is an opportunity to create the convivium you want with a distinct Waitakere character.

We are now a charitable trust which means we are tax exempt and can apply for funding for projects
which involve the wider community. A grant was received from the Massey Community Wellbeing fund which was used for children’s gardening classes at our plot in Ranui Community Garden. The grant covered seeds, a work table and the tutor, Buffie Mawhinney’s fees.These classes have been very successful in meeting Slow Food objectives of taste education and involving children in growing their own food. The future of this project is that we will continue to rent the plot which is also used by two Slow Food members. The gardening class tutor will seek funding from other sources.

School garden projects at Oratia, Henderson Heights and Henderson Valley primarys have also benefited from Slow Food contributions. The principal of Henderson Heights expressed his delight in seeing children in the school grounds eating the beans they had grown.

Our members have enjoyed a varied number of events throughout the year….
A midwinter afternoon enjoying Dave and Barbara Harre’s hospitality and learning about the history of the Oratia Roadhouse
Attending the Italian Festivel
A visit to Mexican Specialities
A Japanese Cooking Class
An Information Stall and tasting stand at a Climate Change Action Day
Delegats Winery tour – many thanks to Carlos
An Oyster tasting and tour
and learning the art of sourdough breadmaking.
Thank you to everyone who contributed to these events.

We would like to acknowledge Karen Perri , who created a number of these events and the passion and dedication she brought to her role as co-leader.
Thank you to Sue for keeping our accounts in great order, Tanya for keeping up with all communication and membership, Joan and Tony for maintaining our blog and truly creative event documentation , Alessandra for tireless promotion of Slow Food and all other committee members.

An article in the April issue of ‘dish’ magazine about Slow Food included mention of our convivium’s activities. We also recieved an invitaion for any of our members to attend a Slow Food Australia National Congress. We hope in the coming year to have closer links with other convivia in New Zealand.
In the meantime we look forward to another year enjoying food that is good clean and fair and each other’s company

Committee: Sue Greig, Claire Inwood, Babriella Turek, Steven Kesler, Joan O’Brien, Tanya Wilkinson, Alessandra Zechinni, Karlene and Terry Shaw-Toomey, Sean Shadbolt.

Minestrone Soup, by Aldo

1 stick of Celery diced (not the whole head)
Handful of Italian parsley, finely chopped
1 large Carrot diced
1 large Potato diced
50 to100g of green Cabbage finely chopped
100g of Pumpkin peeled and diced
1 large Green pepper diced
1 large Red pepper diced
1large Onion diced
4 large tomatoes cooked and peeled and diced, or if you prefer, use a tin of Italian tomatoes
1 or 2 cloves of fresh NZ Garlic finely chopped
1 tea spoon of dry Oregano
1 tea spoon of dry Basil
Small amount of red chillies (add to taste)
4 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and pepper to suit
1.5lts to 2lts of hot water

50g of pasta (small shells or elbows)
50g of grated Grana Padano cheese
200g of home made chicken stock, or if you prefer beef stock

1. Add 4 tablespoons of olive oil in large soup pot.
2. Add all the prepared vegetables, herbs and bring the heat up let these sauté for a minute or two, stir often.
3. Cover the vegetable with the hot water and add stock, bring to the boil and simmer covered for 10 or 15 minutes to soften the vegetables and stir occasionally.
4. If required, add a tin of drained batter beans.
5. Add the pasta and simmer and bring to a slow boil again and let simmer for 1/2 hour or until pasta is tender.
6. Season to taste with salt, pepper and chillies
7. Serve immediately, Garnish with grated Grana Padano cheese.
8. And as option, top with some of the finely chopped Italian parsley.
9. Serve with Italian bread on the side.

Really great served the next day

Winter salad from Claire

Few handfuls of NZ spinach tips
1 beetroot
1/2 cup roasted hazelnuts
big handful of Italian parsley leaves
1 avocado
olive oil balsamic vinegar

Cut beetroot into quarters or sixths, cover with water , bring to boil and simmer about 20 minutes with lid on until soft. Cool and then slip skin off with fingers. Cut into thinner slivers.
Wash spinach and parsley
Place spinach, parsley and beetroot in salad bowl, add slices of avocado, toss very gently.
Sprinkle hazelnuts over top and splash alittle olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper over top

Lentils con Prosciutto from Steven

Serves 4

4 tbsp olive oil
250g prosciutto cut into smal pieces 2 x 3 cm squares
2 small or 1 meduim onion diced
1 sprig rosemary
2 hot peppers diced
250g brown or green lentils
1 litre chicken stock
2 tbsp roughly chopped flat leaf parsley
sea salt and pepper

Pick through lentils and make sure there are no stones. Place in large pan and half fill with water. Scrub lentils between hands and drain . Repeat until water runs clear. Set aside.
Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add prosciutto , onions, rosemary , peppers and saute until prosciutto and onions are beginning to colour.
Add lentils to pan and saute for a few minutes so that lentils absorb the flavours of the other ingredients.
Cover with chicken stock, bring to boil, turn down heat and simmer gently 20 – 30 mins. until lentils are tender , adding a little exta water if liquid falls below surface of the lentils. Cookinfg time will vary according to type and age of lentils and presence of salt from prosciutto.
Check seasoning, serve topped with parsley, a drizzle of olive oil and lots of bread

After recipe for Lentils with Chorizo in ‘ The Pig, the Olive and the Squid’ by Greg Duncan Powell.

Joan made the pear and grappa pie from Alessandra’s ‘Sweet As’ recipe book. Available in all bookstores with taste.