Conscientious Cooks is a periodic series that explores the foodservice industry and those who are making unique efforts to create more sustainable interactions between the field and the table.
On part three of this series, we visit with a unique concept that allows for a deconstructing of restaurants themselves. Whether it be cafes, diners, or five star restaurants, all are based on a very similar model that is rarely, if ever, examined critically. Maria Solakofski's Guerrilla Gourmet consists of upwards to 10 complete strangers coming together within her home, where she prepares 3-course meals or brunches and provides an educational experience that could certainly not be received at any other restaurant. Her passion for providing this is clear upon observing the source of her ingredients - her backyard garden and local farmers and producers she knows personally.
The intimate and human interactions integral to the Guerrilla Gourmet experience, helps suggest that the traditional restaurant experience does little to capture relationships with food and our surroundings. As one of her guests so succinctly put it, "the Guerrilla Gourmet helps disengage minds conditioned by patterns of passive consumption"
The first half of the broadcast takes listeners on a tour of Toronto's Dufferin Grove Farmers' Market - an organic-only market having operated year-round for close to 5 years. Solakofski sources most of her ingredients from Toronto-area markets, and host Jon Steinman visited with Maria both at the market and in her home to learn more about her unique approach to "eating out". Guerrilla Gourmet is 'slow food' at its best!
Maria Solakofski - Guerrilla Gourmet (Toronto, ON) - In addition to her role as a Shiatsu therapist, Maria has her hands in many food awareness projects in the urban metropolis of Toronto. As part of the Real Food for Real Kids program, Maria leads children on tours of Toronto-area farmers' markets, educating them on the origins of their food. Maria is also very involved in the Kensington Market community of the city where she hosts Guerrilla Gourmet - the feature of this broadcast.