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    Sign up for cooking classes with locally grown produce at Sustainable Farm.

    IMG_3564YOU can cut it into strips and roast it on the tawa, toss it with lemon grass and soya sauce Asian style, or add turmeric and red chillies to make a sabzi,a�? lists Krishna McKenzie of Solitude Farm. It is the green papaya, grown in abundance in the Pondy-Auroville bioregion, that he is talking about.
    Locally grown vegetables like peerkangai (ridge gourd) or kothavarangai (cluster beans) are the stars of the cooking workshops at Solitude Organic Farm CafA� on Saturdays. Swiss chef Sarah Kundig introduces participants to dishes prepared with traditional vegetables they may normally shy away from cooking a�� in the first workshop last weekend, she made a salad, a smoothie and a vegan ice cream, all using the kozhi keerai (chicken spinach).IMG_3613
    While people consume vegetables grown on hills like potatoes or broccoli, there is little knowledge about the benefits of indigenous produce, feels McKenzie. a�?Unless they know how to cook them, people wona��t eat them.a�? It also has economic and social benefits as consumers save on cost and interact with farmers.
    Participants leave with a basket of vegetables used in the cooking demo and seeds can also be purchased from the cafe. The workshops are part of the People-Food-Music project of Solitude Farm which the team is trying to replicate among corporates and institutions a�� it includes setting up vegetable gardens, cooking local produce and sitting down to organic dinners over music. a�?Everything we do is based on the philosophy of connecting people to where their food comes from,a�? he concludes.
    On April 2, 9 and 16, from 3 pm to 4.30 pm. Rs 400. Details: 9843319260

    a�� Olympia Shilpa Gerald

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