To say I was excited when I first heard about Food Plant Solutions is quite the understatement. Through Canberra Friends of Dili of which I’m a casual member, I was contacted by a fellow member who suggested I speak to Karalyn of Food Plant Solutions in Tasmania. There were synergies, she explained, with my interests in Timor Leste and its vast edible plant diversity. And it didn’t take me long on this mob’s fascinating website before I was contacting Karalyn to talk more.
By Sarah Burr
The food industry is currently undergoing a massive transformation geared towards various “superfoods” such as quinoa, chia seeds, acai berries, goji berries, maca powder, teff, Kakadu plum (gubinge) products, baobab products, and all things coconut. All of these “superfoods” were originally used by indigenous communities around the world.
When we speak over the phone, Bronwyn and Helen
are bubbly, and they’re busy. The couple from Braidwood, southern NSW, leave for Italy tomorrow on week long eating and talking extravaganza – the largest gathering of foodies world wide, the Terra Madre biannual event by Slow Food.
by Sarah Burr
What is food security? To be food secure is to always have access to sufficient, nutritious, and affordable food. Food security covers the dimensions of time, place, quantity, quality, and cost. To be food insecure is to be lacking at least one of these components. Food insecurity can lead to malnutrition, stunted growth in children, and ill-health. In Timor Leste, two-thirds of the population are food insecure.
by Jeanette Purkis
Today I did something which would have been impossible for me just a few years ago. I got a taxi to an address I hadn’t been to before to spend an evening cooking and connecting with other women I had never met before. I attended the Canberra Cooking Circles ‘country cooking’ evening with twelve other women.
by Sarah Burr
Women are incredibly important to agriculture all over the world. In Timor Leste, women in mountainous areas (where 70 per cent of the Timorese population lives) carry out most farm activities including taking care of animals and cultivation of rain-fed crops such as sweet potato, cassava and fruit. Timorese women increasingly took on farm work during conflict as men left towns and villages to fight. Post-conflict, women have continued this work due to men returning from war suffering physical and mental injury. This farm workload is on top of women’s other duties such as child-rearing, housework, caring for elders, and community responsibilities.
Recorded on the Cooking Circles pilot in 2014, the kids from Dili’s outer suburb Bedois do their weekly drumming-round-the-neighborhood Sunday practice. Have a listen!
Thanks for sitting down to speak to Cooking Circles this month. I reached out to you because I related to your feel-good newsletters targeting women and their wellbeing. You run a business, Jacqueline Evans Skin Care that is built on some core principles of health and wellbeing. Can you tell me a bit about that?
Absolute please Heidi. I am thrilled to be here. My background in nutrition and naturopathy led me in a round about way over many years to creating a line of natural skin care. I believe that skin care should be based on science, nature and common sense. Continue reading “5 Minutes with Jacqueline Evans”
I am irish Australian. That allows me to feel special on St Patrick’s Day as I sip my green beer. It also means I can claim a sense of humour and a love of emerald fields but there is something about descending from the irish that came to Australia.
Their humour, ingenuity, faith would have surely been needed in the harsh Australian climate and in the pseudo- british culture. And its those ingredients, that persistence that I think made a massive contribution to modern Australia. Without the irish there would be no Ned Kelly, no Eureka, no Catholic Schools, no great pubs and dare I say it – a limited pool of ranga’s (Australian redheads). Apart from the notable and what has become part of our national mythology, every irish family in Australia has its own stories of triumph and tragedy.