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The Pleasures of Slow Food (+Giveaway!!!)

I’m not certain of the exact time I became acquainted with the Slow Food movement, but as soon as I did, it immediately resonated with me.


The movement’s stated mission of seeking food that is equally “good, clean & fair” cuts to the core of my food interests. Slow Food’s claim “we believe that the food we eat should taste good; be produced in a clean way that does not harm the environment, animal welfare, or human health; and that its producers should receive fair remuneration for their work” are words that flow just as freely from my own lips.

In the summer of 2008, I traveled alone (someone has to stick around to care for our little homestead, this being before we’d secured a trusty house-sitter!) to San Francisco for Slow Food America‘s “Come to the Table” conference. It proved to be a life-changing, immensely transformative experience, that won’t soon be forgotten.

We’re all about “slow” living, chez English. From drawn-out, rambly meals with friends, to spontaneous pancake breakfasts with my mom (we added fresh blueberries & wineberries from the yard to Hub’s “pancakes of perfection” this past Sunday!), we adore taking time, care, love, attention, precision, and fascination with all things food related.

And so, in recognition of my slow food love affair, today I’m offering up The Pleasures of Slow Food, a gorgeous book loaded with recipes that take a bit of time, but are worth every delicious bite. To enter, simply list the food you love to make that takes a bit of extra time, love, and/or elbow grease. I’ll offer mine: salted chocolate chip cookies. Not the sort of affair you whip up and consume in 30 minutes, these tasty morsels require the patience of 36 hours before their sweet salty goodness is yours. Do it, though. Bide your time, read a novel (this is my recent fascination), make some lemonade, count fireflies, and then, finally, eat your heart out.

The giveaway will run through next Monday, July 11th (which, incidentally, is my 35th birthday!), midnight EST. PLEASE leave a way for me to contact you, should you be the winner, via either an e-mail address, blog, or website. I’ll randomly choose a winner (via the random widget) and post the winnings the next day.

I’ve had inquires about why I only open my contests to U.S. residents. The answer is that I’m just a simple, stay-at-home writer and mom, on a budget like so many others. If international folks would like to try their hand at winning, that’s fine by me, just know that I might need you to go in on the postage with me, perhaps via Pay Pal, as one small measure wrote and suggested.

*If you’d like to read another “slow”-focused small measure post, check out this little ditty on “slow design” from awhile back.

141 Responses to The Pleasures of Slow Food (+Giveaway!!!)

  • Homemade bread……like my Mom made!

  • Claire says:

    Homemade tomato soup! It's still quick enough to make after a long day at work, but a lot more work than opening a can of Campbell's. Plus, it's so, so delicious.

    Thanks for doing the giveaway!

  • knbledsoe says:

    Homemade Cinnamon Rolls!

  • MEG says:

    Tamales

  • artmajorese says:

    Mmm, sweet rolls.

  • Jess says:

    I love making bread, the kneading, the rising, the waiting & then….YUM!

  • creame fresh- french sour cream!!!

  • I love canning and drying my garden harvest… sterilizing jars, soaking, slicing, slaving over boiling water on the stove while it's still 90 degrees out… it's all worth it when you taste summer in a jar in the middle of December.

  • mandi says:

    Savory chicken pot pie. It is our family favorite. The recipe has to be broken up throughout the day for me to be able to have it on the table by supper time, but it is so worth it!

  • kdpicou says:

    spagetti sauce from scratch :)

  • Deelish! says:

    Pane crostoso – crusty italian bread. Simple, a little slower but way better sandwiches!

  • Greyson says:

    Homemade eggrolls with garden fresh ingredients. You have to chop and combine all the vegetables with the chopped fresh ginger and spices the day before. Let it sit overnight and roll them about an hour before serving. We bake them in the oven to avoid frying them which takes about and hour or more. Depends on how crunchy you like them! Tender, love and care. So worth it. This is a family recipe that I got from my mom that she got from her aunt…

  • Courtney F. says:

    Homemade broth/stock. It makes everything taste so much better!

    courtney [dot] elizabeth [dot] foster [at] gmail [dot] com

  • Anonymous says:

    French onion soup with homemade bread to top with!

  • Homemade chicken broth and sourdough bread. <3

  • amanda says:

    French onion soup with homemade bread to top it with!

  • homemade pasta with homemade tomatoe sauce, simple fresh salad with homemade dressing. simple ingredients but worth every second that is put into expelling there deliciousness :)

  • homemade pasta with homemade tomatoe sauce, simple fresh salad with homemade dressing. simple ingredients but worth every second that is put into expelling there deliciousness :)

  • homemade pasta with homemade tomatoe sauce, simple fresh salad with homemade dressing. simple ingredients but worth every second that is put into expelling there deliciousness :)

  • Lauren says:

    Hmmm…. definitely meatballs from an old Finnish recipe.

  • El Gaucho says:

    Homemade gluten free granola. Melting the butter and sugar slowly, than baking the whole thing on a cookie sheet on low temps for a couple of hours. The anticipation makes it even better.

  • misskp says:

    I love to cook, and slow is my style! I love to bake cinnamon rolls using my Mom's recipe (which was an adaptation of my Grandma's recipe) and think of them both very fondly while baking and enjoying!
    This book looks amazing…thanks for a great giveaway and a really great blog!

    gardnergirl58@gmail.com

  • { T G L } says:

    What a great post! I am a big fan of Slow Food and blogged about 'Intentional Eating' – feel free to take a look (it's pretty much the most recent post on my blog).

    Can I participate as a non-American and help you reimburse postage costs if I win?

    Best wishes,
    This Good Life

  • Amber says:

    Oh, great idea! I love to make my nana's home-made chicken cacciatori with fresh baked bread from scratch. It takes all day, getting up at sunrise to start the process!

  • Nicole says:

    My husband and I like to make homemade pasta from scratch together. It can take a long time, especially if stuffed, but it's well worth it!

  • Ohhhh, great question to enter the giveaway! Hmmm…I love to make banana bread from scratch. I use flour from the local miling company and I chop the nuts by hand. I'm looking forward to even more slow food when we start harvesting and canning from our garden. :)

    Crystal

  • iamredmeat says:

    My husband could eat out every day, but I'm a much bigger fan of slow, home-cooked meals. Bread is the ultimate though. Such a luxery.

  • Lauren J says:

    Pumpkin Gnocchi, made with homegrown and home roasted pumpkin :)

  • Annie says:

    Definitely homemade cinnamon raisin bread!

  • Nicole says:

    I love making homemade tomato soup with my homemade chicken stock made from a nice slow roasted chicken!
    canole07 [at] gmail [dot]com

  • Sara says:

    If I say bread, does that count since I make it nearly every week? If not, I'll also throw out soup stock. I love having a freezer full of it. The possibilities!

  • Definitely guacamole. It doesn't take very long to make, but if you try to eat it immediately, it doesn't taste like much of anything. Let it sit for a few hours or overnight in the fridge and it's absolutely delicious!! Just PLEASE let it warm up first if you take it out of the fridge!

  • Maria says:

    Homemade goat yogurt. It's pretty fast to make, but then you have to wait, and wait, for the yummy finished product! Love it with a little honey, nuts and fruit!

  • Ella says:

    Homemade lasagna from scratch – but not the noodles. I'm not yet that crazy. :)

  • Chantal says:

    My grandmothers Pierogi recipe! Lots of time and effort to make wonderful meal.

  • Patricia says:

    My favorite is perhaps the slowest food of all – anything home grown. Soil prep, planting, watering, weeding, pruning, thinning, harvesting and preparing – canning, or blanching and freezing, drying, roasting, etc….Many months, lots of hard work and all completely worth it. Thanks for doing this give away… I really enjoy your blog!

  • Rebecca says:

    Hand rolled spring roles. I like to turn on the radio and loose myself in the slow assembly.

  • Sacha Joy says:

    Pudding from scratch. Any kind – chocolate, tapioca, vanilla, Swedish rice pudding It's really so simple with so few ingredients.

  • Brined pickles!

  • My favorite slow food recipe of late is no-knead bread. It sits and ferments for 18 hours! I made pizza with it done on the bbq over the weekend, gotta say I out-did myself there.. so delicious!

  • Heather says:

    Very kind of you to offer a giveaway for your birthday! 😀 Any recipe that showcases chocolate+saltiness = Mmmm.

  • An omellete from our own eggs. Been waiting four months, and still waiting. I know the chickens will lay an egg for my omellete soon!

    http://www.concrete2chickens.blogspot.com

    Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

  • Debbie says:

    Homemade bread with homemade jam!

  • Mina104 says:

    homemade ravioli, with some sort of seasonal filling….YUM!!

  • Sarah says:

    Homemade sourdough bread! Reminds me and my husband of our days living in France/Italy.

  • Homemade graham crackers and homemade marshmallows for the most amazing s'mores ever!

  • DarcC says:

    The first stalk of asparagus each spring, right after it's been snapped off. Worth waiting all year for!

    I had just established an asparagus bed at my prior house when I suddenly sold and moved – only because I found the perfect property elsewhere – and hated to leave it. Imagine my joy when I walked out the back door of the new place one late summer day, despairing at the overgrown landscape in front of me, only to notice the unmistakeable asparagus plants towering over all else!

  • Denise says:

    Baked beans made from scratch. Gotta soak those beans sooooo long LOL.

  • Beth says:

    Bread and pasta (kids love rolling it out!!!!

  • pandabolt says:

    Roast chicken is by far the best – and one of the slowest – things we make on any regular basis; salted seasoned three days in advance, it just stares at you from the fridge while you drool until the day to roast it finally arrives.

    That said, home-cured bacon is definitely the slowest (in all senses of the word used in your post) meat product we've made all year, and that one hog belly is still feeding us, and that better than any store bought bacon I've ever come across.

  • I love making cheese–soft cheeses and hard cheeses. It's a zen activity for me. Thank you for hosting the lovely giveaway.
    http://frommaggiesfarm.blogspot.com/

  • miss mouse says:

    I have so many favorites: homemade bread & pies as well as pickled veggies from the garden. I've been trying to muster up the courage to make yogurt for awhile.

    My current favorite 'fast' slow food is strawberry-rhubarb crisp with rhubarb from the garden and berries from a local u-pick farm. Mmm!

  • My current favorites are bread a la “Nourshing Traditions” which takes about 30 hours start to finish and from scratch refried beans which are my familiy's current favorite dinner with shredded chicken and salsa. Thanks for the giveaway.

  • Denise says:

    Homemade Egg Rolls!
    Thanks for letting us “non-residents” join in the fun :)

  • robin says:

    Beef stew, simmering slowly for hours! A fresh baked- from -scratch apple pie for dessert. Yum!!

  • Leanna says:

    Homemade yeast rolls…just like Mama makes on Christmas!

  • Helena says:

    My husband's grandmama's melt-in-your-mouth cookies. We're the only ones in the family who have mastered them, so when we do make them, we make a whole lot so we can send them to the extended family just like grandmama used to.

  • We make homemade pasta around here – definitely more time than store-bought, but oh, the flavour and texture! Topping it off with some homemade sauce makes it even better.

  • oukay says:

    I cultivated a sourdough starter, and use it to make bread the old fashioned way.

  • Heather P says:

    Definately bread, nothing else has that dense but soft yumminess! Top with butter and homemade jam, and well… I think I may have to do that this week!

  • sk says:

    My favorite labor-intense meal is the Flageolet Gratin recipe I found in Sunday Suppers at Lucques. It is totally amazing, but involves tons of prep work. Definitely worth it though!!

  • chicken enchiladas with homemade beans and spanish rice

  • cynthia says:

    Slow food is some of the best food-
    time taken to grow it, harvest it,
    treat it with respect and eat with love!

  • Liz says:

    Made from scratch pasta, so worth the extra time!

  • homemade bread and butter. Both require patience and lots of elbow grease, but there is nothing like it.

  • Mary says:

    homemade vegetable stock – so much tastier than the store-bought stuff, and I control how much salt and other stuff goes in it.

    mberghaus(at)hotmail(dot)com

  • Nicole says:

    I have to choose just one thing! Oye! I will say waffles! I have been in search for the perfect waffle recipe for ages. Finally my husband's aunt sent me a recipe from a french cook book…they are as close as any recipe I have been able to find. The secret…some cornmeal and stiff egg whites that you have to painstakingly fold into the batter. Fold not stir! Not to mention the recipe calls for buttermilk and I don't always have it handy. Although it takes almost 20 minutes to get the dough together and another 5-7 minutes to cook it all is worth it even before I have had my first cup of coffee!

  • Yart says:

    Making sweet treats for my monsters

  • Sarah C says:
  • Kira says:

    Homemade cheese! Not just fresh cheese but aged cheddar too! Takes a good 3 months at least!

  • Strawberry jam – I try to make enough to last for a year, knowing that the great local berries won't be back before then!

  • Kathleen says:

    salted butter caramel…mmmm :)

    curlygirl8988@yahoo.com

  • amanda says:

    homemade bread of just about any kind~ from crusty loaves to whole wheat sandwich bread to cinnamon rolls…. mmm mmm good!

  • Granola – made a batch today. And homemade mayonnaise with lots of garlic and lemon.

  • Heather says:

    I would have to say canning. Its a lot of work in the hot summer, but so worth it when you're enjoying your homegrown produce months later!

  • Heather says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Simple Sam says:

    Home canned vegetable stock. I save all my onion tops, carrot peelings, celery ends, etc in a bag in the freezer. When it's FINALLY full, I use the stuff to make my stock. It simmers for hours, then I ladle it into hot jars and process in the pressure canner. PS The onion skins give it a rich, golden color

  • Amy says:

    Slow roasted tomatoes!

  • jen says:

    First of all – are you loving the Hunger Games trilogy? It's such an entertaining and thought-provoking read for something classified as Young Adult! And I cannot wait for the movie to be released in spring 2012. Now that I have that thought out of the way (always love meeting other Hunger Games fans) – I love to make bread. Knead it by hand – I swear it's got to be a form of meditation. And when I feel like juicing and zesting a dozen lemons, making lemon bars from scratch with a homemade short bread crust is my favorite sweet treat.

  • I love making homemade cinnamon rolls and my own butter to make them with. Thanks for the giveaway!

  • rachel says:

    I'm learning the process of sourdough — the flavour and health benefits are so worth the effort!

    rachel @ wokabout . com

  • Sarah says:

    I always enjoy the essentials – bread, yogurt, stock. Nursing it all day, worrying over it, doting over it, expecting it and then finally being able to eat and enjoy it al the while realizing that when I take my time and make things myself they turn out infinitely better than anything to be found in the supermarket.

  • plumm says:

    Overnight oatmeal pancakes….yum!

  • Suzanne says:

    I LOVE making tamales. Slowly cooking the meat on day one. On day two making the masa and complying the tamales with family and friends while drinking from scratch margaritas! Fabulous food, wonderful people!

  • Joeby says:

    Homemade chicken pot pie or chicken and dumplings….worth it!!

  • kim says:

    Lasagna Bolognese – discovered this recipe on the Simply Recipes blog. The smell of the sauce simmering is fantastic & the lasagna is delicious.

  • Cate says:

    I love making homemade bread! Yogurt is fun, too, but there's nothing like the smell of bread baking.

    catelinden @gmail.com

  • Liz says:

    I'd love to make baklava sometime – this would take nothing close to 36 hours, but still a dedication of time and patient layering!

  • Anonymous says:

    tomorrow, i am making fresh coconut cream pie for my sister's birthday….breaking open and grating the coconuts, making the custard filling, rolling out and baking the pie crusts then assembling everything and whipping some cream for the top. Yum! i do it for many birthdays. mary in Cincinnati

  • Jessica says:

    From-scratch pasta sauce. So delicious!

  • Rois says:

    Curing our own bacon,it takes a week to cure,then a few hours to smoke it.The end product is so worth the wait,crispy,sugary and smokey.

  • Sarahbeth says:

    I like using dried beans for my 4 th of July baked beans…. They're even slower when I forget to turn on the crock pot!

  • Amber Jackson says:

    This book looks lovely. I have not heard much about the slow food movement although I like to buy local whenever possible. jewel51(at)hotmail(dot)com

  • Food!

    I enjoy the process of bringing together so many recipes – chicken soup, lasagne, and nearly any kind of bread or dessert. I don't know if I can pick just one.

    OK – how about…home made pretzels!

  • Anna Banana says:

    I make my own cheese – talk about slow food, try waiting 90 days to see if your Monterey Jack turned out! Feta feels fast, ready to eat in 5 days.

  • Anna Banana says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Faye says:

    I'd make pickles! This year I'm having a hard time finding the time to can…

  • Chppie says:

    I also was thinking bread but I also really like my Lebanese Potato Salad, which has a lot of hand-chopped herbs, for special occasions. I usually only make it when I can make a lot and have frieds to share it with.

  • Kim says:

    Oh yes, the slow food movement resonates with me too. Thanks for the chance to win!

  • mmm, homemade pizza or my bread and butter pickles. those are my favorites. i also make homemade ice cream without an ice cream maker!

  • Salsa straight out of the garden, followed closely by homemade pizza dough. Now if I could only figure out how to make my own tortilla chips…

  • Michelle says:

    homemade bread!

  • Leigh says:

    Homemade pasta.
    A roast that cooks forever in the oven.
    Bialys!

    nasturtium(at)fastmail.fm

  • Mmmmmm, so yummy.
    I do enjoy taking my time, soaking the oats overnight for the morning oatmeal. Caring for the sourdough starter, then allowing the bread dough to sit overnight, and then another before baking..mmmm
    I love the process of putting intention into what we eat:)

  • Ashley says:

    Frozen yogurt from scratch – from milk to creamy dessert in 12 hours! Totally worth it.

  • Helois says:

    homemade sourdough bread….. yummy along with homemade strawberry jam.

    heloiswegrzyn@yahoo.com

  • Tony R says:

    homemade re-fried beans..yum yum good!

  • Miss Music says:

    Swedish butter braided coffee cake–takes two days, but is worth every minute!

  • Susan Sink says:

    Pizza! First make the mozzarella from scratch. Use the whey to make the dough. Prepare the toppings while it rises, spinach from the garden, or later tomato and basil, and bake. Doesn't take TOO long, but longer than the delivery guy– and way more satisfying. Here's a post about recent fun with homemade cheese: http://susansink.blogspot.com/2011/07/locavore.html

  • Anonymous says:

    yogurt! I give it at least 12 hours and it's delicious.

  • Aubin says:

    I love sun-tea, my gramma taught me to make it. You take a big glass jar, put 3 or so tea bagsmin it, fill with cold water a few lemon slices if desired and then put it out in the sun for a few hours. Serve it with ice in a tall glass and enjoy! Its totally worth the wait! ~Aubin aubincoulthard@gmail.com

  • A. Verzello says:

    Homemade mayonnaise is so worth the extra effort.

  • Homemade bread!

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

  • My favorite thing to make is homemade pasta, by hand! My best friend and I get together to make it… we roll out the pasta dough by hand, hand cut it, and then we usually cook it fresh :-) It beats dried pasta any day of the week!!

    *email address: vintagegirl_xoxo@yahoo.com

    (forgot to add my email the first time, oops!!)

  • Dawn says:

    As I get older, I am more comfortable with slow foods. More willing to make a recipe that takes a few days. When I was younger life was rush rush rush, now, not so much. I would be thrilled to win this one. Last night I made Jam that was allowed to mcerate for 24 hours-fabulous.

  • Melissa O says:

    Tiramisu, often a two-day affair, day one being the making of various ladyfingers, and day two being the actual tiramisu itself.

  • Melissa O says:

    sorry, thought there would be a place to add my e-mail address on my tiramisu post: melissajoquendo at hotmail dot com

  • Jill Higgins says:

    I love making fresh pasta. It doesn't really take “that” long to make, but on busy days it can be tempting to just grab a box from the pantry. Fresh pasta is always worth the extra effort…yum.

  • The chickens are loving summer! So we're getting lots of eggs, making flan the current obsession at this little homestead.

  • kayla says:

    Sauerkraut. I add all kinds of fun things to mine, wait a month and then enjoy with everything!

  • So many of the foods I like to make takes time: Half-Sours, Kombucha, Infused Vodka and mustard. That book looks lovely- thanks for the giveaway opportunity! -Christina

  • homemade monkey bread ~ took forever and tortures you with the yummy smell!

  • Homemade stock & cultured foods!

    kristinLmarsh@gmail.com

  • heather says:

    oooh, BREAD! thanks for the great giveaway – i'm a huge fan of slow food…the wait is always worth it :o)

  • jord. says:

    I have a pancake recipe that has a ridiculous number of steps but makes the absolute best pancakes I have ever had.

  • Sue says:

    Sauces- with tons of dicing involved and then lots of bubbling slowly!

  • Jenn says:

    What a wonderful give away! I am so looking forward to homemade tomato soup this winter using this summer's bounty! Soon, I will be making blackberry everything….jam, cobbler and ice cream. It simply doesn't get any better than blackberries! Yum! Happy birthday to you!

  • Brenda says:

    Fresh fruit and homemade bread and butter!

  • Heather says:

    Homemade pizza dough! So delicious and easy to make.

  • Kari Metzger says:

    I just found your blog after picking up your book 'Canning, Preserving' – I'm thrilled to find someone who has written so eloquently everything I believe in myself!

    I have a house in a major city, with a 30' x 110' lot – everyone says you just can't grow enough to make it 'worth it' on a city plot, and I have chosen to prove them wrong! In fact, every year, I have enough produce to be giving armloads away to friend ever other day – too much for us to eat as a family of 4! (which is why I've been getting more and more into canning over the past few years).

    Your book is so wonderful, I can't wait to read it cover to cover – a CANNING book!! :)

    Thanks for the inspiration, and you are right! There is definitely a movement happening, and I'm glad to be in it!!

  • Evan says:

    Within the last year and a half, I have endeavored to make as much as I can myself. Skipping those store bought shortcuts has been a revelation! Never before has my cooking tasted so good — I can not only control the what is in the food my loved ones and I eat, but I the labor of love makes everything taste so real.
    I now make my own butter, soft cheeses, spice blends, bread, pie crusts (and I grind my own flour — a grain mill is probably the best investment I've ever made), and my favorite, piroshki, as my ukranian grandmother, her mother, etc. have made it. Slow food keeps traditions alive.

    I also love to make my own cleaning products — thanks for your wonderful so-fresh-and-so-clean spray recipe, I use it daily!

  • Evan says:

    oops, and my email (for evan) is evanecarlson@gmail.com

    Thank you!

  • melody says:

    homemade pizza in the pizza oven! have to fire up the brick oven, make the dough and let it rise, tomato sauce, cut up all the toppings, pick all the herbs from the garden…but it is ALWAYS worth it :) happy birthday ashley!!!!!

  • Meg says:

    Homemade vanilla extract! Worth the long wait :)

  • Penny says:

    A pot of soup that simmers on the range for hours. I keeping finding something else to add to the pot so it takes a little bit longer to cook after each addition.

  • k a t says:

    Slow rising bread, sooo delicious!

  • jodi says:

    Possibly the slowest food I cook is the famous no-knead bread… which takes about 24 hours from start to finish. So incredibly good, and entirely worth the time!

  • I love to make granola! It isn't too tough to make but it does take a long time to dry in the dehydrator. But it's worth every minute!

  • Gabnlee says:

    Loved the Hunger Games series! Also just diving into your Home Dairy book and looking forward to making me some cheese and yogurt! Happy birthday. I am a fellow NCer who is currently lucky enough to be at the Outer Banks :) I do so much from scratch and take the time needed because it's so much better. I also go to great lengths to get good local ingredients. My interests are always evolving to something new. I make everything from ricotta to marshmallows to pasta and bread. I made a lemoncello that took many weeks to meld. My bolognese sauce is the most labor intensive. Gumbo is also worth the effort. Thanks for the giveaway: gabnlee at gmail dot com.

  • elisa rathje says:

    so many wonderful slow foods! i have to say the most exquisite slow delight we've had this year is infused liqueurs – i just broke open a jar of cherries that were soaking in gin and sugar for a year. glory!