Wellington Park in downtown Simcoe is a beautiful space with flowers cascading, cooling shade from mature trees and lots of green space – perfect for a giant tent and stage. This was July 29th and it was the celebration of local food and farmers throughout the county.
Right on the cusp on Food Day Canada, over 200 people gathered and enjoyed a menu like none other. Thirty six dishes on the buffet table, each dish was created from the produce of a local farmer. It was an event put on by the Norfolk Rotary and Lions Club and the money always goes to a good cause.
I was there selling The Ontario Table and all of the profits from my sales was going to the Norfolk Children’s Nutrition Network.
The buffet table read like a geographical listing of Norfolk’s farmers. Dishes like Spicy Kernel Peanuts Hummus and Wagon Wheel Diakon Salad caught my attention. I took a bit from McClung’s Vegetable Platter, Kitchan’s Cabbage Salad and Fett’s All Red Fingerling Baby Potato Salad. The Lake Erie Perch from Knectel’s was deliciously fresh and the V.G. Packer’s Flattened Chicken was yummy. On the sweeter side there was a Norfolk Crisp that included apples from Cleaver’s, peaches from Matz’s and Saskatoon berries from Harmony Farms. Melons were from the Cider Keg and the star – Sweet Potato Bread Pudding was made from Ven Berlo’s sweet potatoes. Of course it all came together under the brilliant direction of Chef Heather Pond-Manorome of the Blue Elephant in Simcoe – great job Heather.
The event is in it’s second year so look for it next year. By the end of the 3-hour dinner, I’d raised over $300 through the sale of The Ontario Table for the Norfolk Children’s Nutrition Network. A great example of how local food works!