5 ways to build a community around food

Food is an inherently social thing that creates and sustains tighter bonds than just about any material thing. It’s also a great lens through which to talk about history, the environment, social justice, health and other issues. What better way to get to know the people around you, where your food comes from, and how to eat well than to plan activities around it? Here are five suggestions on how to build your own community around food:

1) Resolve to eat dinner around a table with other people twice a week. Or three times. Or one time. More than you do now.

2) Resurrect the potluck. At work, at family gatherings, with friends. I, for one, plan to bring to the table the most audacious 1950s-style aspics I can find for my co-workers’ dining pleasure.

3) Cook with people. Bring the little ones in to pick basil, get the older ones to peel garlic and stir. Hand an apron to your significant other or friend and tell them to get chopping.

4) Visit your local farmers market and talk to three vendors. The next week, talk to them again.

5) Create a food event. Invite your friends over to bake pies before Thanksgiving. Throw a Mad Men-style cocktail party. Have a cookbook swap.

Speaking of a food event, we’ve been thinking about throwing one in Boston and giving you the recipe to do the same in your neck of the woods. Look for more details in our next post!

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Published in: on 15 November, 2011 at 12:04  Comments (6)  

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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Great thinking! I want to have a stir fry party — everyone brings “something” from their fridge that they haven’t done anything to yet, and I will make Indonesian flavoring pastes from James Oseland…

  2. It’s just us two in our house, and our dining room table is in the living room, so we often eat in front of the TV. Which means we don’t talk. I’ve been trying to make sure that the table is kept clear so we A) don’t eat on the couch and B) actually talk to each other. It’s tough going, but I’m trying.

  3. LOVE!!!

  4. @Elatia, what a lovely idea! Sometimes I get so sick of eating the veggies in my own fridge – but the second someone else makes them, I feel like eating again! You should totally do it. Waste not, want not.

    @vintagejenta – when I was growing up, all we really did was eat in front of the t.v. With no table. You’ve at least got the eye-to-eye thing going ;-)

    @Ilene – THANKS FOR THE SUPPORT!

  5. Oh man, Will you please make some 1950s-style aspics for my coworkers, too? The more audacious the better. Thanks for the post!

  6. Sure, Sally, as long as you help with the research for the Mad Men-style cocktail parties ;-)


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