The ancient food traditions and culture of Azerbaijan will be featured at this year’s Slow Food Christmas market in London, giving visitors the opportunity to discover the rich cultural offering of a country still unfamiliar to many. Lying at a geographical and cultural intersection between Western Asia and Eastern Europe, the kitchens of Azerbaijan have been synthesizing a blend of styles long before fusion cuisine became fashionable. As the country teeters on the edge of modernity and the inevitability of an industrialized food system, Slow Food acknowledges the heroes who make the food, celebrates the dignity of the producers and farmers of a community led food culture unchanged in millennia, where craft and artisan food production remains local and traditional.
The Buta Festival of Azerbaijani Arts will featuring the country’s ancient and exotic cuisine such as kutabs (savoury pancakes), dolmas (stuffed vine leaves), pomegranate and blackberry wine aromatic traditional Azeri chai and homemade vodka flavoured with mulberries, cornels and dates. As well as food there will be Azeri drummers, dancers, and talks about this little known, fascinating, wild and rugged land. A series of talks, tastings and cooking demonstrations will run throughout the afternoon. Azeri chefs will create this gastronomic feast combining their own home produced herbs, spices and grains with the best of British, including rare breed meat from Northfield Farm, fish by Shellseekers and fruit and vegetables from Ash Green Organics.
‘Events like this are the future of Slow Food,’ said Slow Food International President Carlo Petrini, ‘I hope that this will be one more step towards the objective to strengthen the knots of the network that we are building, in order to see changes for the better in food production on this planet.’
The Slow Food Christmas Market will be held at Southbank Centre, London from 19 – 22 December.
For more information on the Buta Festival of Azerbaijani Arts: