Jun 292016
 

corianderHelen Simpson writes about how to grow coriander successfully

Helen’s article for the month of July is on how to grow coriander. As she says in her introduction “Coriander, also known as cilantro, is one of the easiest and most delicious herbs to grow in abundance. It is an extremely versatile plant with the leaves, stems, roots and mature seeds all being flavoursome and aromatic. It suits many different cooking styles, from garnishing pumpkin soup or to use in an Asian style dish. Coriander is an annual and, despite its delicate, feathery look, is best planted from mid to late Autumn through to early Spring.” She then goes on to discuss: seed or seedling; aspect and soil; harvesting; and storage. Read her full article.

Local producer news – Old Evropa have opened a shop!

Question: why did an Italian, a Bulgarian and a Briton meet in Australia to discuss the French?

Answer: to discuss the new Old Evropa Bakery, which opened in Eltham Village on 22nd June. Yes, that’s right, Mernda-based Old Evropa, who will be known to many of you from their presence at Eltham Farmers’, Hurstbridge Farmers’ and Warrandyte Community markets, have opened a shop. So, you can now buy their yummy bread 6 days a week. I met with Tatiana and Damiano Coluccio, aka Old Evropa, to discuss what they are doing and why.

In the discussion, it quickly became clear that they are on a mission, and that this mission is more than just providing us with yummy bread. Rather, for them, it is about us eating the right sorts of bread: bread that does not make you feel bloated or acid refluxed; bread that does not contain any ‘chemicals’; and bread that has been long-fermented, to make it more easily digested. In other words, bread like it used to be (as long as you are European). So, to quote Damiano, their bread contains only certified organic flour, yeast, filtered (and thus purified) water, salt and (of course) love.

The long fermentation is the key. It is this which conditions the wheat to make it easier to digest. And it is this which, in their opinion, makes the bread suitable in some cases for people with gluten sensitivity.

But the long fermentation is also a problem for the Coluccios. It is this which means that they have had to start baking around midnight. And, because their current small baking space at home is not a controlled environment, they then have had to stay up all night to control the sleeping and waking up of the yeast. Thankfully, the new bakery has a controlled environment so Damiano and Tatiana will be able to move from being nocturnal to diurnal!

I asked them about the scope of what they will be selling in the shop. They replied: a full range. Loaves as well as their current focaccias and baguettes. Croissant and pastries. Even filled baguettes. Tatiana will be full-time pastry chef, and Damiano full-time baker.

I asked them whether opening a shop had always been part of their plans. Tatiana replied that she had always wanted to open a European eatery where people would be able to savour products that bring back memories from Europe. Although they have a long history in both the food industry and baking for family gatherings, perhaps surprisingly, they have only been baking commercially for the past three and a half years. The new shop will allow them to substantially upscale their current operations whilst still continuing with their traditional methods. They would like to go down the route of Organic Certification and they are clearly in it for the long haul.

I ended the interview by wishing them best of luck but saying I would be sorry to see them stop being a stallholder at Eltham Farmers’ Market. “Oh, no“, they replied, “we will be carrying on at the market“. So, actually, you will be able to buy their yummy bread 7 days a week.

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Bread, brioche, etc Coffee and seating Behind the scenes Sandwiches

 

Used hessian/burlap coffee sacks for sale

sacksLocal food producer Hildebrand Grove have lots of used hessian/burlap coffee sacks (660mm x 930mm) to get rid of. $2 each or $1 each for 10 or more. Pickup only from 12 Kylta Road, Heidelberg West, Monday to Thursday 7am-3pm or Fridays 7am-2pm. Just turn up, go through the piles and choose the ones you want. Change will not be given so make sure you have correct amount. 100s available, with many different prints and types; all have been opened in random spots but generally close to the top or bottom of the bag. Perfect for pet beds, horse activities, carrying tools, workshops, arts & crafts, sack races for the kids, multiple uses in the garden, etc.

Another satisfied customer

Last week, Velyne asked if anyone had an unwanted tree that she could have. Here is the result: “I was offered a lovely tree and it has already been re-homed. It was to fill a gap in my mother’s garden to cover her window. Thank you for a brilliant result.

When is it time to harvest?

Here is a plant-by-plant guide to help you decide when to harvest each fruit or vegetable. Thanks to Mernda Community Garden at Carome for the link.

New events

Love food, hate waste: using fresh vegetables from root to top

What:
Did you know Victorians waste 25% of the food they buy? Learn how how to minimise food waste and make delicious and nutritious meals. For example, using carrot tops, beet leaves and coriander roots. Local chef Duang Tengtrirat from Real Food Catering will share her experience and love of cooking in this demonstration. You will leave with fresh ideas and easy-to-use recipes. Supported by Sustainability Victoria. The first of two consecutive demonstrations. Bookings essential.
When: Friday, 8th July, 10am-midday.
Where: Edendale.
Cost: free.
Enquiries/Bookings: Edendale by phone (9433 3711) or email.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Love food, hate waste: how to use leftovers

What:
If you are looking for inspiration on using your leftovers, come and watch how to make delightful meals from what you find in your fridge. Local chef Duang Tengtrirat from Real Food Catering will share her experience and love of cooking in this demonstration. You will leave with fresh ideas and easy-to-use recipes. Supported by Sustainability Victoria. The second of two consecutive demonstrations. Bookings essential.
When: Friday, 8th July, 1,39-3.30pm.
Where: Edendale.
Cost: free.
Enquiries/Bookings: Edendale by phone (9433 3711) or email.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Winter gathering at Petty’s Orchard

What: Using food as medicine is an excellent and empowering way to keep you and your family well over the Winter period. Join Libby Shaw, Naturopath, Herbalist & Nutritionist, in exploring traditional methods to nourish your body and deepen your relationship with the wonderful qualities of food.
When: Thursday, 14th July, 11am-midday.
Where: Templestowe.
Cost: free.
Enquiries: Libby Shaw by phone (0407 338647) or email.
Bookings: just turn up.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Chinese cooking

What: Learn the secrets of Chinese cooking with cooking teacher Jenny Chua as she demonstrates how to create your own simple, fresh and perfectly balanced Chinese dishes at home.
When: Wednesday, 20th July, 6.30-7.30pm.
Where: Brunswick.
Cost: free.
Enquiries: Moreland City Libraries by phone (9389 8600) or email.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Yarra community growing spaces workshop

What: Do you have, or are you interested in having a planter box, fruit tree or nature strip garden in your street? To learn how to apply for, and make the most of, your garden go along to this workshop, which will include: a talk on low-maintenance food gardening; a swap table for home-grown food; information on how to apply for a public planter box in the City of Yarra; and a chance to meet other community members over morning or afternoon tea. Registration is required.
When: Saturday, 6th August, 10.30am-12.45pm and again at 2-4.15pm.
Where: Fitzroy North.
Cost: free.
Enquiries: Pippa French by phone (9205 5782) or email.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Building a healthy economy from the bottom up: annual agribusiness dinner

What: The City of Whittlesea Agribusiness program is excited to announce two inspiring speakers for their annual Agribusiness dinner event. Anthony Flaccavento is an organic farmer near Abingdon, Virginia, USA who is dedicated to catalysing and supporting ecologically healthy regional economies and food systems.
Dr Robert Faggian is an Associate Professor with Deakin University’s Centre for Regional and Rural Futures and a leader in research of land capability, agriculture and climate impact. The dinner will also showcase locally produced food and wine from the City of Whittlesea and Melbourne’s north.
When: Saturday, 13th August, 6-10.30pm.
Where: Yan Yean.
Cost: $35.
Enquiries: Annemaree Docking, Whittlesea Council by phone (9217 2593) or email.
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Suburban beekeeping

What: Learn about keeping bees in your own backyard from Backyard Honey’s expert apiarist, Peter Dyer. Hear about a bee’s life cycle, the role of a beekeeper, bee swarms and the importance of bees to the food we eat. You will also have a chance to watch live bees in action in Peter’s demonstration hive. Bookings essential.
When: Sunday, 21st August, 2.30-4.30pm.
Where: Richmond.
Cost: free.
Enquiries: Richmond Library by phone (1300 695427).
Bookings: Eventbrite.
Further information: LFC calendar entry.

Summary of upcoming events

Over the next week
Over the next month

Click here for the complete calendar of upcoming events.