Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Urban Locavore Box

There aren't often moments in your week where you experience a random act of generosity and kindness. People are usually caught up in their own happenings to worry much about anyone else, at least never more than in passing. However I was lucky to experience an act of generosity recently from someone who I'd never even met yet.

One evening on Twitter, I was noticing everyone posting about how they were stoked about their Urban Locavore goodie box, and I mentioned that I was jealous and I wanted one! I'm a bit broke at the moment due to being a relief teacher and it being school holidays (so no pay) and my summer holiday job being so delayed that by the time I start working there, Ill be only 2 or 3 weeks away from working again. Anyway, I couldn't really afford one this month, due to Christmas among other things! Everyone had one a box but me, so I pouted. Urban Locavore posted on my behalf, asking who was going to play Santa?! Who was going to gift me a box full of WA foodie goodness?! I thought nothing of it and ended up watching a movie and going to bed, but before I went to bed I checked Twitter and it turned out that the lovely Strawberrythief had gifted me a box! She said that it was because of my fundraising efforts for the Breakfast with Benefits that I had done. Such a nice thing to do! So the next day, I got my personally delivered box! It was so generous of her to do that for someone she'd never met. Go and read her lovely blog!

But what is this Urban Locavore box anyway!? Who started it? This is taken from their website...

Each month, Urban Locavore hand picks 6 to 10 of Western Australia’s best products and delivers them directly to your door in the Perth metropolitan area. Some products you may have seen before, some will be unknown but we are sure you will love each one.
We are a team of passionate WA food lovers. We are not affiliated with any producer or company, the only bias we have is towards local. There is a great article in the Subiaco Post by Jona Turle which gives a background on the motivations behind Urban Locavore.
We are small part of a bigger movement which aims to reduce food miles and associated emissions, embrace seasonality and local produce and support smaller growers and producers who use organic or biodynamic methods in their production.

Small changes in buying habits can make big differences.

Our Mission:
To discover & share great food made by talented and passionate producers in Western Australia.
To promote & support producers who source most (or all) of their ingredients locally.
To encourage consumers to think about and question where their food comes from and how it is produced.

What is a Locavore?
Locavore is a word which was coined in San Francisco in 2005 during the World Environment Conference and has since been embraced as part of a movement towards championing a focus on reducing food miles and associated emissions, embracing seasonality and local produce and supporting smaller growers and producers who use organic or biodynamic methods in their production.

This was their first box, and it contained some really great West Australian stuff! Paul is the brains behind the operation, and we had a chat when he came round with the box and he's a cool guy. He got the idea from living in San Francisco and has bought it back here with a more local emphasis. The awesome local products that were included are as follows;

Rochelle Adonis - Rosepetal Barberry Pistachio

Now, I'm not a fan of nougat, its just too sweet. So I wasn't planning on being able to eat this on my own! Thank you Christmas parties! I got this out when we had friends over, and went to cut it into pieces - it was pretty crumbly rather than sticky. I was a bit concerned the rose petals would remind me of eating pot pourri and get stuck in my teeth. When I ate a little chunk I was pleased to see the rose flavour wasn't overpowering and the petals didn't feel I was chewing a dead flower. It was pretty nice, chewy (but not stuck in your teeth, pull your fillings out kinda chewy!), with a nice mild flavour. I'd definitely give this to someone as a gift!

Eden Gate - Blueberry Velvet

Not yet tried this one - but I want to! Ill put it in morning smoothies and on ice cream I think! When I start working again (which means I'll be making more of an effort to have a decent breakfast) Ill likely put this on yoghurt and museli for breakfast!

This is what I want for breakfast...

Holy Smoke! - Smoked Trout

Not tried this yet either, and not sure what to use it for! Ill be happy to take any recipe suggestions! Im thinking perhaps some potato cakes?

Vesuvio Pasta - Ravioli Ricotta & Spinach

This was something I knew wouldn't last long in the house! I served this with some homemade almond pesto with basil from my garden - it was delicious! The pasta is filling, and would serve 2 of us for a main course, and 3 or 4 for a starter. The pasta came frozen and takes about 10mins to cook which is really convenient and fast for families, busy workers, everyone! I would buy these again.

The cheese was mild but creamy, and would carry so many flavours really well. A discussion with The Food Pornographer had us both agreeing that this pasta would be fab with burnt butter and sage! A big winner!

Purely Mexican - Salsa Mexicana

My bfs eyes lit up at this one. He's a chilli fiend and was happy to see this one! We've used this as a dip to take on picnics, and I stirred some into smashed up avo to make a cheats guacamole. This is a really fresh, flavoursome sauce that is really versatile - if you don't mind the heat! The chilli comes and smacks you in the face but then the freshness of the other ingredients comes through. To use it in other things such as chilli con carne or beans would be really nice. We still have some left, so will see how we use it!
This is the kinda label you wanna see..
Turban Chopsticks - Thai Green Curry
I had this for dinner last night. When you look into the jar you can see the chunks and bits n pieces of all the fresh ingredients that go into this mix. Open the lid and it smells GREAT!

I cooked off the whole jar in a wok, added some diced free range turkey meat, then poured in a can of coconut milk. I added some homemade chicken stock as well that I had lurking in the freezer, just to add some flavour! I added baby corn, broccolini, and rice noodles to make a soupy bowl full of delicious! This made 4 good portions, and was tasty. Gluten/dairy free and totally vegetarian, this is certainly a crowd pleaser! I don't know how much these retail for but I'd consider buying another one to keep in the cupboard for times where you need a quick green curry fix!

Gluten Free Cookie Company - Quinzacs
Hm this one, I'll admit, I wasn't a fan of. The cookie was HARD, I couldnt bite into it with just my teeth, and I wasn't a fan of the flavour. Might have been the quinoa, not sure as I've never had it before so I cant say accurately! But I would use these cookies, blitzed up for a gluten/wheat/soy/lactose/egg free cheesecake base, or as a crumble topping, just not as a cookie.. I just realised I dont have a photo for this! Ooops!

I love this concept and have every intention of supporting it in the future!I cant wait to find out what the next box will bring! I would love to get one each month, it's a great surprise and gives you some variety each month. It also goes without saying that supporting local businesses is a fantastic and sustainable thing to do!

Others who have gotten one of these boxes and blogged about it are;
The Food Pornographer
Foodie Cravings (who freaks out at whole fish and got Paul to hide it from her!)

Next month - BUY ONE! They're awesome. 


  1. What a strange concept! Love it though. Is it the same 6 ingredients for each customer each month? That is very cool. I live in NSW, should look into if something like this exists over here :) And what a lovely lady for sending you it too!

  2. Hey Melissa, thanks for stopping by!

    Every month the items are different, which makes ot exciting to find out what's next in the box! I'm pretty keen to find out! I don't think ill be so lucky to have someone so generous gift me another one lol I was very fortunate that this lovely lady was a giver! I'll definitely by another box though, worth it!