The Long Italian Lunch

Celebrating a visit by our friend Saverio from Perugia and Slow Food Umbria 
Organic Greens from Sally and Fresh Gardens in Kumeu 
Meet Saverio – lover of beautiful food and an expert in all things olive. And now he has added New Zealand to his list of loves after 5 weeks of fishing, walking, eating and exploring.  
Fi and Saverio at the Otara Markets 
Fi and I were feeling a little bit daunted about cooking for and with an Italian but we needn’t have worried as our local food impressed with freshness and flavour and the focus was always on sharing and enjoyment. The Italian and New Zealand way of life are very compatible. 
Jenna setting up in the sun
Our lunch was an (over)sellout and we were a bit nervous on the day as lunch was al fresco and come 9am it was pouring. Then the weather gods smiled on us with sunshine and just a bit of rain help people get to know each other. 
Alessandra and Saverio cook
We had a fresh, simple menu with a focus on using local and organic ingredients including Sally’s organic greens, Fi’s home grown tomatoes, Wild Wheat and Crafty Baker bread and heritage golden delicious apples from Dragicevich Orchard in Oratia. This orchard is key to preserving the iconic Oratia Beauty apple.
So what did we eat?
Bread and olive oil, panzella salad, pasta carbonara, barbecued free range chicken with greens, Italian heritage apple cake and a beautiful brie cheese.
No croutons to be seen as the panzella was made with soaked bread 
Saverio’s pasta demonstration
Pasta carbonara
Divine and absolutely no cream

I managed to impress by cooking the chicken on the bbq – so easy
Food, wine and friends 
It was great to see people connecting and reconnecting and having fun, to share what Slow Food is all about and to welcome some excited new members. You can check out what we are all about right after the cakes!
The heritage apple cakes were a hit – there were 4 of them made by 3 cooks so it felt a bit like the A&P show but with much less rivalry – they were all delicious

What is Slow Food all about?

Enjoying and sharing good food, wine and company.

Connecting the people who produce our food and the people who eat it.

Preserving and restoring the relationships that make our food system work.

 

Bringing people together to help change our broken food system for the better.

 


A grazie tante to everyone who helped us make the Long Italian Lunch so conviviale.


The next day Saverio got to experience olives in New Zealand. 

Greg and Saverio in his olive grove near Wellsford

Thank you to Greg Scopas for hosting myself and Saverio and giving us a great insight into New Zealand olive growing and olive oil production. And for serving his award winning Sicilian Fennel sausage for lunch.