Sunday, September 16, 2012

I went to the Real Food Festival in Maleny and now I want chickens.

Last Saturday I hauled my significant ass up to Maleny for the Real Food Festival in what could only be described as glorious weather. The Sunshine Coast do late winter/early spring SO well. I could do with this year-round!

Sponsored by the Maleny IGA (who kindly asked if I was attending, and offered me tickets - thanks guys!), the festival had more than 100 stalls, all with local ties, and all super-interesting. I loved the paddock-to-plate atmosphere and the sheer amount of things to see - cooking demonstrations, discussions, taste-testing and a bunch of other hands-on experiences.  

I especially liked the taste-testing.

Also thought it was a good idea to remember where this tent was in case I went into labour...

it was such a fun day, and even Abby got in on the action.

So did "Studley".

He made me jealous that I didn't live free range on 106 acres. I'd be happy with that!

The Kids Arena had cooking demonstrations, gardening talks, a jumping castle and BABY CHICKENS!!!!!

That my daughter touched once and then refused to ever again.

c'mon man, it's little and fluffy and cute!

I was very excited to sample some delicious food from Raw and Peace, a new cafe that has opened in Maleny and that I haven't had the chance to visit yet. There were a ton of food stalls, but I wanted to try what these guys had on offer. I've not eaten a lot of raw food but it sounds like fun, so figured I needed to see what it was all about.

Mostly I just liked the name of the cafe.

I got the raw vegan spinach and cheese pie and was chuffed that I did. I wondered what a cold, uncooked spinach-and-cheese pie would taste like, and it tasted like amazingness. Like it was blessed by a unicorn holding a kitten or something... I think I need to take some cooking lessons from these guys!

I also bought some mind-blowing haloumi from the Cedar Street Cheeserie stall, which my mother assures me she took a photo of. There is no evidence to suggest she is telling the truth.

One bite, though, and I declared it a spiritual experience.

I took it home and made a salad with roasted pumpkin, fig, avocado, rocket, pumpkin seeds, lemon and honey and couldn't taste a bite of it thanks to the epic cold I had come down with earlier. 

Me not tasting haloumi, especially such incredible, hand-made haloumi, is one of the saddest things I've ever experienced.

Your condolences are appreciated.

Anyway I will be back next year, and if Abby doesn't want to play with the chickens I will disown her. What a weird child.


  1. At least Abby likes the beach!

    Toddler C does like chickens...our neighbors have some and he is fascinated by them.
    I am thinking he will get some chooks for a second birthday present!

    That looks like such a great day...I will have to remember it for next year!

  2. Ooh, I didn't see that one! Will have to go to Maleny and check it out!

    Also, I want chickens too. Ones that don't get eaten while I'm on holiday this time... :-/

  3. Im with Abby. Chickens are creepy. It doesn't help that my sister breeds them. Joh's Purebred Poultry on Facebook if you're interested.

  4. For the past two and a half years, we've been 'going to' get chickens. Still going to one day. I've always wanted to try raw cuisine, it sounds yummy.

  5. Wow! Sound like a great day. I have a couple of comments to make. My apologies in advance... 1. We have the same pram, which pleases me no end cause here in Sydney's inner west with all these trendy mums with their 'Mountain Buggy's' I feel slightly lame. Thank you for re-justifying my coolness :) 2. Condolences for not be able to taste the amazing haloumi. I am a haloumi fan but often find that some brands are way too salty. When you find a good one, stick with it like cheesy glue! 3. Chickens are way cool. Chicks are even way cooler, and some day your daughter will come to know this but for now, you may have to except that she just isn't ready. Like J (my 16mth old) just isn't ready for crayons, or pasta (plain or with various toppings), or kisses that come unsolicited.

  6. I'm coming next year! Sounds awesome. I am busting for chickens too. Love that Miss A is a one-touch chicken lover ;)

  7. Aw Toddler C, that does sound grown up, doesn't it!

  8. HAHA definitely no problem with that here! Maybe leave them at my place when you go on holidays ;-)

  9. I like them when they're little! I hate when they squawk and flap though...

  10. Yep, me too! This time I can blame the baby though :)

  11. HAHAAH this is possibly the best comment I've ever received. My pram is gigantic and ridiculous. My kid won't eat pasta either... and this haloumi was so divine because it WASN'T salty. Just so damn creamy and good!

  12. Yes, do! We can make a date of it :)

  13. That sounds amazing! I want to be there! Good, healthy, fresh food is so exciting and that place sounds like heaven! We're tossing up weather to get chickens of not, I'm worried about foxes and the cost of building a good chook pen in a rental house!

  14. Sounds amazing - do vegans eat cheese ? or it is a special kind of cheese. it looks yum ? The choc tart sounds divine too.

  15. They had made their own cheese from cashews. It was so delicious.

  16. I just found a recipe for it too - the cheese that is -

  17. I would have been sceptical about the pie but it looks very tasty. Such a pretty part of the world.

  18. I skipped on that pie as it was uncooked, but know I think that I should of given it a try. Chickens are the best pets so get some.

  19. Ordinarily I would have been, but people rave so much about raw food I thought I'd be brave. I was honestly impressed.

  20. Ohh big mistake! It was great, full of flavour even though it was cold. I couldn't believe it.

    And I just gotta get through getting this baby out and chickens are next on my list :)