Ecoventura supports Slow Food movement

AUTHOR The Ecoventura Team

Each year, Relais & Chateaux join forces with Slow Food – the global movement working to ensure that everyone has access to sustainable, high quality food that is good for them and for the planet – to celebrate their annual Food for Change campaign.

A global, grassroots organization originally founded in Italy in the 1980s, Slow Food has grown in to a global movement involving millions of like-minded individuals in over 160 countries around the globe. Its aim is to prevent the disappearance of local food cultures and traditions, counteract the rise of fast life, and combat people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat.

With food intrinsically linked to so many other aspects of life, including culture, politics, agriculture and the environment, our food choices can collectively influence how food is cultivated, produced and distributed, and change the world as a result. Something to ponder at your next meal!

Nutritious and delicious

Here at Ecoventura, we place a huge importance on sourcing our delicious cuisine from local, sustainable sources, and are excited to once again be involved with Relais & Chateaux’s campaign,  which this year is being launched on 7th October.

Given the fact that we sail the seas around the Galapagos Islands, seafood features prominently, whilst most of the fruit, vegetables, and other ingredients we use come from local farms. In fact, around 70% of our ingredients come from the surrounding islands, minimizing food miles and helping to support the local farming community at the same time, and our head chefs and their teams are constantly looking for ways to further reduce the farm to fork miles for their chosen ingredients.

We need a hero

As part of the Food for Change campaign, Relais & Chateaux chefs around the world are encouraged to choose a “Hero Ingredient” to draw attention to a local, perhaps overlooked, ingredient, and then create a dish or series of dishes that showcase the chosen product’s qualities.

Ingredients are drawn from Slow Food’s Ark of Taste, a catalog of local, culturally important ingredients that could be at risk of disappearing as a result, for example, of the industrialization of the food industry, changing consumption patterns, or local biodiversity loss.

By drawing attention to these foods, the aim is to preserve local culinary cultures and support rural communities by encouraging the use of locally grown ingredients, all whilst maintaining the variety of tastes and ingredients that makes travel such a wonderful experience.

Intense flavors

This year, our very own Francisco Vintimilla, Executive chef of the Ecoventura fleet and the luxury expedition yachts Origin & Theory by Ecoventura, has chosen Sal Prieta as his special ingredient.

Made with roasted and ground Canguil Blando, a corn variety indigenous to Ecuador, and peanuts – themselves cultivated by local populations far before the Spanish ever arrived in South America – mixed with herbs and spices, Sal Prieta is used as a condiment with a variety of local dishes.

“I chose Sal Prieta because it is typical of the coastal region, and is made by local producers and artisan cultivators” explains Chef Francisco. “It is not well known internationally, but here its popularity has grown. It has an intense flavor that enhances the dish and provides texture.”

One of the dishes we use Sal Prieta in is Encebollado, our take on a classic Galapagos fish broth made with albacore that uses a host of locally-grown produce such as yucca, tomato, red onions and coriander.

“The original Encebollado recipe doesn’t contain Sal Prieta, but we wanted to integrate more local flavors into the dish to create something that would wow our guests – it has quickly become one of our most popular dishes and one that I really feel represents the best that Galapagos produce has to offer”.

If you would like to sample some of Chef Francisco’s famous Encebollado, or any of the other wonderful dishes we serve on our voyages, please do get in touch with the team and we would be delighted to help.