Quinoa in the kitchen
Slow Food and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) have a shared vision of a sustainable world free from hunger and that safeguards biodiversity for future generations. The collaboration between FAO and Slow Food originates from our common goals and our mutual interest to promote the wealth of local gastronomic traditions in defence of food biodiversity and in support of smallholder farmers and producers. Our common goals are reflected today in a number of shared initiatives. This book - published during 2013, the International Year of Quinoa - has the objective of promoting knowledge about quinoa and its use as an important step contributing towards freedom from hunger and malnutrition. Central to the process is gastronomy itself and the idea that this holistic, multidisciplinary science, which encompasses everything from agriculture to history, from economics to anthropology, from botany to culinary art, can be a liberating force for the communities most hit by malnutrition. Ancestral traditions and the protection of biodiversity through work in the fields and use in the kitchen, as in the case of quinoa, can contribute to liberating many people in the world from conditions of food insecurity. From this point of view, Latin America, where quinoa originated and grows best, is proving an interesting testing ground. Today, a new generation of high-profile chefs are rediscovering the forgotten food products of local rural communities and bringing them to the attention of world gastronomy critics. Quinoa is just one of the food products leading this new wave, and maybe the most important: a symbol of a renaissance that is building a gastronomic identity for the peoples of Latin America, a way for them to stand up for themselves. All we have to do is support this movement and demonstrate through knowledge of food products and the stories behind them that, in every local area hit by hunger and malnutrition, it is possible to find solutions to some of the key problems they face. The starting points are in each areas’ unique biodiversity and ancient agricultural and gastronomic traditions. Slow Food and FAO are proud to materialize their collaboration with the creation of this book on quinoa. It provides the reader with a deep understanding of this unique and special food, from the crop's ancient origins to its nutritional properties. The book is also enriched with recipes from renowned international chefs who place particular emphasis on the ease of preparing quinoa and the use of local ingredients.