Another Year, another series of HomeEc events!
January was the kickoff to our monthly HomeEc event in Toronto as well as host to our first ever “Off Campus” event (Columbus, Ohio is joining us every month in 2013!) as well as our first ‘play at home’ version! The theme for January was “Resolutions”; participants had to make something to share that either helped them ‘keep’ or ‘break’ a resolution.
Columbus HomeEc at the Rehab Tavern
This crowd was small but mighty! This was the first time the event has happened in Columbus and our intrepid hosts, Kate (Kate, on the Way) and Rachel (Hounds in the Kitchen) had less than 2 weeks notice to pull off their first event. I haven’t had the pleasure to meet either of them in person but my experiences with them online have left me inspired. They really care about community, food and urban homesteading.
You can read Rachel’s recap of the event here as well as read Kate’s review of Foraged Flavor which inspired her recipe for January (and is one of my all-time favorite cookbooks). It was a particularly neat experience for me to see Scott join the fray at the Rehab tavern. Scott (Live, Love and Sustain) and I have gone back and forth on Twitter a few times and I felt wonderfully left out that they all got to meet each other and I didn’t!
Toronto HomeEc at The Avro
We had a solid turnout of friendly people once again! 25-30 people gathered into our favorite watering hole and shared their ‘resolution’ food. It surprised me just how many people make resolutions (I do not) and the giant percentage of us who were ‘good’ by making food that represented resolutions kept.
I also learned that resolutions are wildly interpretive. When our friend Dawn brought caramel and reached for a ‘resolution kept’ badge, I became curious. She explained that her resolution was to floss more so caramel would remind her to do so (you can see a picture of the floss-bearing sign she made in her post about the event here).
I often take a look at the lighter side of life so I had planned to create the ‘ultimate resolution breaking’ dish until my conscience tapped me on my shoulder. I ended up making our dehydrated BBQ flavored sweet potato chips. I’m generally not a fan of healthy food that mimics junk (I’d rather eat the junk) but these are a giant exception; I have to make them more often (you can find the recipe here).
The night was full of great conversation and we met several newcomers as well as welcomed the returning regulars.
We challenged people to play the home version of HomeEc – essentially they attempt the same challenge and share photos, blogposts, tweets or updates on something they’ve made and shared (people add the hashtag #WPHomeEc on sites like Twitter and Instagram so we can find them). This part of HomeEc is going to be the most difficult for us to get going because it’s a little abstract and can be technical.
10 photos were shared on Instagram, most were from people at the actual event.I was really excited to see momto2beans share her photo of carmelized onion and bean dip – we’ve been commenting back and forth on each others photos on Instagram for a long time and she decided to play along from home!
Rachel shared her photo of her stand mixed (I wish we had the counter space for one of these) as she prepared for her evening. I’m also a little envious of her stainless counter.
This was Aaron and Kelly who made 2 versions of a crumble – a resolution broken and a resolution kept. Being a Gemini, I could identify with this split-personality approach.
Kate’s resolution was about increasing the amount of foraged food she ate (a resolution I share).
#WPHomeEc was off to a good start on Twitter as well. It was neat to see several non-attendees join the conversation and I’m excited about somehow using it to connect people at multiple HomeEcs to the larger community!
Did we miss you in the recap? Let me know! (joel at elevenideas.ca)
HomeEc in February
The next HomeEc is Monday, February 25th (it’s generally always the last Monday of the month) at 8:00PM. The theme will be announced next Monday (February 11th) and you’ll have 2 weeks to plan your cooking and sharing. In the meantime, you can sign up to attend either event on Facebook (even if you’re not going to be in person and just want to follow updates) or come back on Monday! Click to jump to the Toronto Event Page or the Columbus Event Page.
The ultimate vision for HomeEc is to grow communities of people who connect around food in person. It is a non-competitive environment that is open to all levels of cooks. If you are interested in discussing the possibility of organizing a formal event in your city or town, send me an email (joel at elevenideas.ca). We are growing slowly and selectively to make sure the communities can sustain themselves and are open to dreaming together. A recap of past HomeEc events can be found here.