THE MIDNIGHT OILS

The latest news from the Ballarat Food Network

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PIE IN THE FACE

PIE IN THE FACE

Next week I fear my popularity will hit rock bottom. I have decided it could be wise to take my umbrella on every outing, a handy shield to deflect flying pastry. As a judge in Ballarat’s Winterlude Pie Competition, I will be expecting at least one pie in the face. Honestly I’m not too worried about the wrath I’ll encounter as there are numerous pros who have been asked to partake in a feast of 28 local pies.

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THE JIGGETY FILES JULY 2015

THE JIGGETY FILES JULY 2015

A thriving community requires fresh quality produce from a sustainable food supply. Land on the city fringe is still important to our economy and we are aware that it's our obligation to support our local producers. If we can all start to make an effort to supplement our regular grocery shop from local produce markets as a priority before filling the rest of our needs from the supermarket, we can reap the health benefits while supporting our region’s economy. It may take a some more effort and planning to create our meals from the local seasonal produce on offer, but it will provide a far more tasty and nutritious diet for our families.

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JIGGETY JIG PART TWO

JIGGETY JIG PART TWO
At the closing on the first Jiggety Jig Indoor Farmers Market an official manoeuvre was executed the Piggity Jig, with fingers bent like little pig ears on our head and feet shuffling back and forth we all raised our chins and chuckled. Success! And even better, the atmosphere! Our first event was brilliant.
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INGLENOOK DAIRY AT THE JIGGETY JIG

INGLENOOK DAIRY AT THE JIGGETY JIG

If you love our local Inglenook Dairy milk you will be very excited to hear that we will be selling Inglenook Milk and Cream at the Jiggety Jig Market this Saturday 18th July, but you must preorder.

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FARMGATE FRIDAY BRINGING FRESH LOCAL PRODUCE TO BALLARAT

FARMGATE FRIDAY BRINGING FRESH LOCAL PRODUCE TO BALLARAT

Country Style Smallgoods and Saltbush Kitchen are bringing local fresh produce to Ballarat. Farmgate Friday will commence this Friday July 17th, 3pm to 7pm. You can order your quality locally made smallgoods online at www.countrystylesmallgoods.com.au  before 5:30pm this Thursday and pick them up the following afternoon at Saltbush Kitchen at M.A.D.E. where there will be an offering of fresh vegies, local platters and wine.

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AUSTRALIAN BUSH SPICE CLASSES

AUSTRALIAN BUSH SPICE CLASSES
We have been fans of the tasty food produced by Brigid Corcoran at Saltbush Kitchen for a while now, she has brought the tastes of Australian native bush flavours to our attention and we are keen to learn more about these native bush spices. Over the winter months (June, July and August) Brigid and her team at Saltbush Kitchen at M.A.D.E are holding Saltbush Kitchen spice classes, a chance to explore some Australian native spices whilst sharing some platters and drinks featuring these flavours.
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THANK YOU BALLARAT

THANK YOU BALLARAT

It was a busy few weeks leading up to our very first Ballarat Food Jiggety Jig Indoor Farmers Market and we are thrilled that the local community came out in droves, on such a brisk winter morning in Ballarat, to show support for our local producers. Our resilient stall holders were pleased to be able to offer their fare in a sheltered setting on what turned out be the coldest morning so far this winter.

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THE GATES TO THE TRUFFIERE OPEN TO ALL LOCAL CHEFS AND APPRENTICES

THE GATES TO THE TRUFFIERE OPEN TO ALL LOCAL CHEFS AND APPRENTICES

Local truffle growers Andres and Lynette Haas of Black Cat Truffles are busy preparing for an anticipated bumper season of winter truffles. On selected Tuesdays throughout June and July, the gates to the truffiere will be open to local chefs and apprentices for a truffle experience like no other. 

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TO MARKET TO MARKET JIGGETY JIG

TO MARKET TO MARKET JIGGETY JIG

To market, to market, to buy a fat pig. 
Home again, home again, jiggety-jig.
To market, to market, to buy a fat hog.
Home again, home again, jiggety-jog.
To market, to market, to buy a plum bun.
Home again, home again, market is done.

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CHRIS BALAZS FROM SAGE BEEF

CHRIS BALAZS FROM SAGE BEEF
Sage is a “100% Grassfed Paddock to Plate” family owned company, located between Bannockburn and Lethbridge. Sage are as passionate about the animals as they are about the premium quality 100% Grass-fed beef and lamb they proudly supply.

 The “Sage” concept originated from farmer Chris Balazs from “La Finca” farm. He originally wanted to process his own premium Hereford cattle for family and friends and maybe sell at a farmers market or two. Four years on however and Sage has grown to supply its highly sought after meat in six fresh produce stores throughout Geelong, the Bellarine and the Surf Coast, and is at a number of farmers markets as well as being available online.
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AN ECLECTIC MILK BAR

AN ECLECTIC MILK BAR

As a kid I loved jumping on my green sparkly Gove five speed, rounding up the neighbourhood gang and heading for the Milk Bar. We would pool our money and spend big time on cobbers, bullets and musk sticks, or if it was winter hot pies, dimmies or Chicko Rolls. I always put my hand up if we were low on bread or milk, another ride to the Milk Bar, I could spend the change and scoff something yummy before I got home. Alas Milk Bars are all but gone, as well as the one cent lollies. There is one place however that continues to tick the local one stop shop criteria - Eclectic Tastes. You can still pop your Gove in the bike rack, there are always dimmies on the menu. Margo has just perfected her pie entry for the Pale and Pie Comp, you can grab a Litre of Inglenook milk and even order a loaf of Basilio sourdough.

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GOLDFIELDS FARMHOUSE - NARDIA KEENE

GOLDFIELDS FARMHOUSE - NARDIA KEENE

It's been a fantastic year for Goldfields Farmhouse, the 2015 Paddock to Plate winner for a business over 2 years. They offer a variety of cheeses to enjoy with all our seasonal dishes. We have been loving the entire range from their firm and mild Lasseter's Reef to their stronger flavoured Buangor Blue, so we thought it timely to catch up with Nadia Keene from Goldfields Farmhouse to tell us what's tantalising her tastebuds this season.

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IN THE KITCHEN WITH MADELEINE FROM THE LITTLE CUPCAKE

IN THE KITCHEN WITH MADELEINE FROM THE LITTLE CUPCAKE

I’ve been sitting in a sugar coma for the last hour, kind of catatonic, I have to write this week’s, In the Kitchen and after devouring twelve of the most exquisite little cupcakes I have ever seen (no, I did not eat them on my own) I just don’t know how to do these pop art cake favours justice. You are all going to have to go to The Little Cupcake at 223 Eureka St and try your own beautiful box set of delectable delights.

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CELEBRATING QUALITY FOOD IN OUR REGION

CELEBRATING QUALITY FOOD IN OUR REGION

In the prime of autumn we celebrated the best of the region's produce at the Rural Lifestyle Expo at The Ballarat Showgrounds. The variety of quality produce being grown and made in the Ballarat area is astonishing and thanks to Natures Cargo's Graham Wilkie the hard work and dedication of producers dedicated to creating quality fare is being acknowledged and their businesses supported.

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TASTE BALLARAT FAIR FOOD

TASTE BALLARAT FAIR FOOD

The Taste Ballarat Food Pavilion at the Ballarat Rural Lifestyle Expo on Saturday 11 April 2015 was a hub of Ballarat's finest growers and producers. We were entertained with some classic Taste Ballarat events and were introduced to a community discussion of a fair food system and how we all play a vital role in the future of our food supply.

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TASTE BALLARAT PRODUCE DINNER CELEBRATING THE FOOD OF THE REGION

TASTE BALLARAT PRODUCE DINNER CELEBRATING THE FOOD OF THE REGION

The Taste Ballarat Produce Dinner 2015, the third incarnation of an event created by Andy Beyerle, based on the local produce grown in our region’s backyards and gardens, was held at the Lydiard Wine Bar Friday night. The spirit of celebrating and sharing local food grown and produced in our region was a tribute to everyone involved. The energy and passion of growers, producers, chefs, hospitality professionals and lovers of quality ethical food ensured that the event was a tasty success. It was epic.

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FEDERATION UNI'S FIRST MYSTERY LUNCH FOR 2015

FEDERATION UNI'S FIRST MYSTERY LUNCH FOR 2015

We are excited to report that the Federation University's Commercial Cookery students are about to embark on their amazing mystery lunches for 2015. Tomorrow's first Mystery Lunch is themed around poultry.

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TASTE BALLARAT: A BALLARAT FOOD EXPO

TASTE BALLARAT: A BALLARAT FOOD EXPO

Anticipation is growing as I check and recheck my lists for this year’s Weekly Times Rural Lifestyle Expo, not just because there will be many beautiful things to see like fat piggies, belted Galloways and kooky looking chooks but because as you all know I love to eat great food.

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BALLARAT FAIR FOOD SCREENING SATURDAY 11 APRIL

BALLARAT FAIR FOOD SCREENING SATURDAY 11 APRIL

Ballarat Food is super pleased to annouce that the Australian documentary Fair Food will be screening this Saturday April 11 at midday and at 2pm in the Food Pavillion at the Weekly Times Rural Lifestyle Festival at the Ballarat Showgrounds, on the corner of Creswick Road and Howitt Street Wendouree. For anybody curious about our food system in Australia and the issues impacting it, you really must see Fair Food. A Q&A discussion panel will follow the 2pm screening.

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TASTE BALLARAT PRODUCE DINNER CHEF - FEDERATION UNI'S RYAN PEARCE

TASTE BALLARAT PRODUCE DINNER CHEF - FEDERATION UNI'S RYAN PEARCE
Federation university's Commercial Cookery chef Ryan Pearce and the his team of chefs will be preparing the canape’s at the Tast Ballarat Produce Dinner, using backyard foraging and Country Style Smallgoods.
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