Keep­ing it fresh and tasty

Shepparton News - - WEEKEND - — Tara Whitsed

My en­tire child­hood had a strong con­nec­tion to fresh pro­duce, par­tic­u­larly when it came to my gor­geous Nonna.

No, I’m not Ital­ian, but my Nonna pre­ferred the term and she may as well have been one with her in­cred­i­ble cook­ery skills. She al­ways had a veg­etable gar­den and many dif­fer­ent fruit trees. My Pa would peruse the many rows of corn and I would watch him main­tain the golden veg­etable from their din­ing room as his Akubra hat bobbed through the top of the lush crop.

I re­mem­ber chow­ing into my Nonna’s ‘fruit leather’ — one of my favourite child­hood treats — which was sim­ply a de­li­cious con­coc­tion of de­hy­drated fruits.

Every time I stayed at their house I was treated to beau­ti­ful fresh tomato on my toast or dried bick­ies or a scrump­tious ap­ple-themed desert, made with the spoils off their tree.

My mother also loves to grow ve­g­ies and many of my week­night meals were packed with fresh snow­peas and as­para­gus and were com­pleted with a hand­ful of tart rasp­ber­ries from her canes.

Now in my own home, I’m slowly build­ing up my col­lec­tion of plants, boast­ing an ex­ten­sive pot of chives and rasp­berry canes, lov­ingly do­nated by Mum.

So when I found out about Bourchier St Pri­mary School’s Pad­dock to Plate ini­tia­tive I was ex­cited to hear the stu­dents had been learn­ing about the im­por­tance of fresh pro­duce.

Sus­tain­abil­ity is some­thing that schools have been fo­cus­ing on more and more in re­cent years and I think it has been an in­cred­i­ble turn­around in the cur­ricu­lum.

We also touched base with Kaiela Arts this week af­ter the open­ing of its De­sign Roots ex­hi­bi­tion.

The works, in­clud­ing two screen-printed wall hang­ings, are in­cred­i­ble and well worth tak­ing a look at be­fore the gallery closes up on De­cem­ber 21 for the year.

En­joy!

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