Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Slugs and Snails

Cover to the flip zine. It is filled with delicious. Click for bigger version.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


So last week Vancouver Food not Bombs had enough people to serve! And it was mostly new people? What happened? Not everybody left Vancouver... Also, someone was apparently being bossybossy. That is not the FNB way! Hopefully next week will go smooooootherly.

FNB also happened in Halifax, where I was, and it was fun!

Thankfully, I actually found out where the cooking was happening this time (as their website is out of date and not super helpful, only the Sunday serving still happens as far as I know). I knew it was happening...somewhere...and people even told me where the cooking/serving happened, but I forgot, because I knew I wouldn't need to remember.

Why? Because of the Porch Crawl!

The Porch Crawl was an awesome party that went around like eight different locations (various people's houses), where there was drinking, dancing, games (giant chess!), tunnels, music, and more things I don't remember as the night went on. The last house it went to was also where FNB was cooking the next day. It was also where I fell asleep.

(By the way, you should totally organize a porch crawl, they are awesome fun.)

The next morning I got up, wandered off to find clean clothes/get over my hangover, and then returned to the FNB house, where I pealed and chopped things, washed dishes, and did some other stuff I don't remember. Yay food.

Then we walked over to the library, with someone pushing a bike and bike-cart for some of the bigger stuff, to serve.

We had! A salad (with a tahini sauce), a tofu scramble with lots of vegetables, apple sauce with a granola topping thing, stuffing (that's what we should have done with all the bread we always had!), plus bread and random vegetables. Yum yum. And I gave out some of my friend's vegan caramels (made with coconut milk).

There were also some random Christians or something when we got there giving out coffee and juice.

Not that many people came to the serving, it was mostly just people who lived at the house and their friends. Which is how I started doing FNB all those years ago. Still, you sometimes get people who are really appreciative of the food, and I think it's a good way to create community and meet other people, something that was harder to do at servings in Vancouver. And everyone served themselves! Hurray!

After the serving I went off to photocopy some zines (both my own and Sugar and Snails/Slugs and Spice) and give them to
The Anchor Archive zine library! Which is a pretty sweet place. There was lots of other FNB stuff there as well!

In addition to a zine about the history of FNB in Halifax, there was also the "Food Not Bombs Halifax Archive". A basket full of photographs, meeting minutes (!!!) and other stuff. Yes! They used to have meetings and discussions and stuff, wow. They don't any more though. I didn't really have that much time to look through them though, as I was busy looking at other stuff.

And! While I was in there, a girl came in and started talking to a guy who was volunteering there. They started talking about FNB, and it turned out that he was a guy who had lived at the house where FNB happened, and she was from Ottawa and talked about how people had tried to start FNB there this summer but it had fizzled out. So that's why I couldn't find it!

Woah, that was a lot of FNB for a day. Now I am in England and I have no idea when the next time I will be able to update this blog about something like that. We shall seeeeeeeee.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Sad news in Vancouver/Nova Scotia Farming

Over the last few weeks there haven't been many people showing up to the FNB servings in Vancouver. Sometimes there haven't even been enough people to do a serving. This sucks!

Hopefully things will start up again as a huge influx of people will start showing up and they can start having awesome servings again.

If you want to stay up to date on what's going on with Vancouver Food Not Bombs, you can subscribe to the mailing list.

The mailing list will also let you know about other servings you can participate in if you cannot make it on Saturday's.

In other news, my trans-Canada trip has brought me to Nova Scotia. I didn't get to go to any FNB servings in the last week, as I was visiting my friend's farm. That was a lot of fun, and we harvested melons, pumpkins, potatoes, carrots, onions, cucumbers, beans, and other things I don't remember. They were delicious!

I'm back in Halifax now, so I should be checking out the serving on Sunday!

I'm continuing to give out copies of the Sugar and Slugs/Snails and Spice (the Vancouver FNB cooking zine) wherever I go. I've made the banana cupcake recipe from the zine a couple of times and people really like it! You should try making it for some friends.

I'm going to drop some zines off at the Anchor Archive Zine Library here in Halifax. My friend Alex Wrekk, who I met at the Portland Zine Symposium a few months ago, is going to be their zinester in residence next month.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Wishes it had been "food not wine" on Friday night

So, Montreal. Montreal has to have an active FNB right? Right? Well, I dunno.

I found two different days/times in two different places for when FNB servings happened in Montreal. The first one was on Saturday. But I was too hungover to get to it. Yes, indeed. Stupid alcohol. If it was Vancouver I would have gotten out to it, but since I didn't know where it was I just did nothing all day. Bah.

Today! Sunday! I go to the place. I wait around. Nobody shows up. I guess that zine thing had wrong/outdated information.

But! However! All was not lost on my trip to Montreal. I did indeed participate in a different free vegetarian food organization. The People's Potato is a group at Concordia that serves vegetarian lunches to upwards of 500 (!!!) people a day, Monday to Friday at Concordia.

Myself and a friend went and checked it out on Thursday and Friday and it is pretty awesome! They encourage people to bring their own dishes, but they also supply them for people that don't have any. And they serve a lot of food. Every day they have a soup, a stew, a grain, and a salad (sadly, no dessert, as they don't use sugar?). And it's different every day. I had amaranth on Friday. I've never had that before. I barely know how to spell it.

The People's Potato actually employs people to cook! They're able to do that because every student pays them a little bit of money in addition to their tuition. The money also helps pay for all the food that people make. Something to strive towards for everyone who's in university now.

In addition to eating the (yummy) food they gave out, I also helped wash dishes both days (as my friend had classes/meetings to go to, and I had nothing better to do). I washed lots of dishes, met some nice people, ate seconds, and gave them a copy of the Van FNB cooking zine.

I also gave a copy of the zine to an anarchist bookstore in Montreal. So if you desperately want a copy and are in the area, they said they were going to photocopy some.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Kitchen(er) Helpers Part Deux

After last week's failure of cooking with FNB I was totally pumped to do it this week. I was staying at the house of people who participated in it! Surely it would happen!

But it didn't.

Lets write some background first. Several months ago some friends of a friend came to Vancouver, helped out with FNB there, and slept on my floor for several days.

Since I was in Ontario (and killing time to some extent), I figured I should go see these people and meet my friend who I had never met before (penpal!). I got there just in time for the going away party of two of the people who'd crashed at my place, and it was good to see them again before they left for Germany. It was also good to see my other friends and meet lots of other people.

Later in the week I made the banana (cup)cake recipe from the Sugar and Snails (the dessert half of the FNB cooking zine) and everyone loved them. Hurray!

However, when saturday rolled around, it didn't seem as though anyone was going to be able to do FNB. Several of the people I was staying with were working, and nobody had a vehicle for moving foods from donation site to cooking place to serving place (Vancouver has it so easy with all of these things within just a few blocks of each other). So, unfortunately it didn't happen. Apparently some people took some food stuff and just gave it out without cooking it or whatever, which is good, but not awesome. Hopefully next week, after school has started again, will be better for them (and also Vancouver, where, based on the listserv, nobody was able to go to the serving this week. I hope it went well!).

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Ottawa, pshaw

So I attempted to go to FNB in Ottawa. I emailed the email I found, and got a response, giving a time and place.

So I went to the appointed time and place, and...nothing. It certainly seemed like the location of FNB, as it was in a community vegan kitchen space or something, and there were two boxes of donations of kitchen stuff and vegan foods outside.

After waiting about an hour (I know FNB can start late sometimes), I gave up, took some of the food donations, and walked back to my friend's house (in the rain).

Still, Ottawa wasn't a total waste FNBwise, as I did at least get to give my friend a copy of the cooking zine which featured a couple of recipes she'd given me.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Sunday servings

So in Vancouver FNB news, someone accidentally took our key to another province! Oh no! I hope the serving on the weekend went okay. I really have no idea if it did or not, as I was in Edmonton.

FNB in Edmonton is not doing so hot. They lost their cooking space a while ago, and are now just cooking in various people's houses. Also, as it's summer time there're lots of people traveling and stuff. I'm sure it'll pick up again once school starts.

Anyway, I went to their serving behind the library downtown and hung out with some of the people that had made some food. There was pasta salad, sandwiches, water, and beet greens (a bag of which I took back to my friend's house and then failed to cook, hopefully she will use them).

Not that many people came by, but they didn't have a sign or anything, and it was a kind of gross cold day. Brrrrr. At any rate, I met some nice people, ate some tasty food, and gave them a copy of the Van FNB cooking zine. Hurray!

Sunday, August 16, 2009


So since I was back in town for the weekend I decided to help out with FNB this weekend.

Katie and I were going to do food pickup on Friday after I did a shift at Spartacus books, but by the time we got to Sunrise they had closed. They close at 6? That's crazy!

So we headed down earlier on Saturday, and did pickup then. On the way back a couple of people made comments about us being Food Not Bombs. Hurray.

Anyway, we got apples, pears, tangerines, melons, pineapples, limes, green beans, carrots, lettuce (which we thought was cabbage) and... I think something else, but I don't remember it. Tomatoes! Oh, we also had frozen bread, which we put in the oven to defrost.

Anyway, we hauled the stuff back to DERA, and started cooking. Well, I did, Katie had to go run some errands.

I soaked some lentils, and chopped up the tomatoes. Then Ricky showed up and we started peeling and chopping the carrots. Dave showed up and he started cutting apples. Katie came back and we progressing fine. And then I dressed up as a zombie and left.

As the zombie walk was today, and I missed it last year, and one of my friends was supposed to be there. Well, she never showed up, and I used my uncanny ability to fail to talk to anyone. It was still fun though.

It went practically as far away from FNB as it could though, that beach thing past the Burrard bridge. So I hoofed it back to FNB and got there just in time to help with the serving. Sasha and Saoirse had shown up to help too.

We failed to find the duct tape, so couldn't put up our sign. And we had less food that expected. But that just made the serving go faster! Which is sometimes a good thing.

After I was going to bring the food we hadn't cooked over to Pigeon Park. Except that I couldn't! as Pigeon Park is surrounded by fences. Crap! So I just brought it across Carrall and left it there.

Then there was the guy who we accidentally let into the building. And we actually did to it this time (and by "we" I mean "me"). Still, we managed to get him to go outside as we left at least. Hurray.

Now, on to Edmonton.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Bits and Pieces

A friend of Anna (who was an awesome FNB member while she was here) visited her and took some photos at FNB. You can find them here (scroll down). Hurray! I'd put some up here, but this computer sucks too much to resize them or anything.


My friends in Food Not Bombs in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, have a blog. It so far seems to be less about just FNB, but more about general politics/activist stuff. Still! Worth checking out. Did you hear about the huge riot/protest in KL recently? Crazy stuff.


I left some of the FNB cooking zines (Sugar and Snails/Slugs and Spice) at Spartacus Books before I left on my trip. And they've all sold! Hurray. I will drop some more off before I go.

For those that don't know, the zine is filled with vegan/vegetarian recipes and stories. Some of the recipes are things we make at FNB, some aren't. A couple are even from one of my friends in KL (see above). They are all delicious.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Not with a bang...

So my last day in the America I was in Seattle, and decided to go check out the FNB group I'd helped last time I was in town.

I'd even run into one of the people who'd been cooking last time at a vegan restaurant the day before. He wasn't going, as he had to work, but I still intended on it.

Except it wasn't happening. Or it was happening somewhere else that nobody knew where. There were a lot of people in the community centre where they cooked, and the kitchen was full of people. So if FNB was happening, it wasn't happening there.

I thought about going to the serving later, but I decided I didn't want to go across town to something that maybe wasn't happening. Oh well.

Next stop: Vancouver!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The San Francisco Third

So yet another FNB serving in SF.

On Monday I went back to where the group I'd help cook with had served on the previous Wednesday.

One guy showed up with a bike cart full of soup and some bread. He did FNB by himself! Incredible!
I helped him serve soup and we talked a bit about our experiences. Also I ate a lot of soup because I was hungry.

Also that day I started to stay at the place where I'd done FNB the week before. Everyone there was really nice. Thanks for letting me sleep on your couch : )

Sunday, August 2, 2009

On the second day of San Franciso my FNB gave to me...

So day two of San Francicso (last Thursday) led to another food not bombs experience.

This time I headed to a place in the Mission district, and after pulling on a rope attached to an actual bell, headed up some stairs to a really neat community space.

It had a big kitchen, an oven you had to open with a crowbar (!!!), a huuuuge pot (bigger than the one in Vancouver! well, maybe not taller) and a room full of bicycles on the second floor.

A girl who was at the couchsurfing party the night before was there! Amazing! And lots of other people. It was pretty fun.

We made a big salad thing. A soup thing. And I made banana bread, which people said was very good. Oh, and limeade.

I used the recipe from the FNB cooking zine we made (!!!) though we struggled to find flour at first.

We served outside and it was cold. Afterwards there was an open mic poetry/etc. thing where we served. But I decided to sit inside and watch Mirrormask, because I was cold.

Oh! And there was a huge free box. I got pants, a hoodie, _and_ sneakers! Hurray! This isn't about FNB that much, but apparently I forgot everything that happened on that day.

On Friday I went to the critical mass bicycle ride, and met a guy who had been at FNB the day before. Some of his friends came up and started talking to him/me. We hung out all evening, and they invited me to play bicycle polo on Tuesday. Exciting!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

San Francisco 1

So yeah, I just do FNB wherever I go now it seems.

Wednesday I got to San Francisco, and with nowhere to stay and no idea of what I should be doing I wandered around, ate some food, found an anarchist bookstore and saw a sign for FNB. "Hey! There's a serving today, I should check it out." So we called the number from the poster, but it didn't work.

So I went to a nearby library, got a different phone number, went back to the store, called it, and got an answer. I was soon on my way!

I showed up to an apartment building, and went up three flights to help cook in someone's apartment. We made a vegetable soup thing, an apple/fruit crisp, and apple/carrot juice! That was exciting that they had a juicer.
They also apparently had a deep fryer, which they used sometimes, which just sounds like chaos.

After cooking, most people didn't want to go to the serving, so it was lucky I was there! Two other people took the stuff to the United Nations Square (or something) by bike cart, and I went along to help serve.

The serving was where the police used to hassle FNB a lot, and there was a nearby fountain where I was told FNB would serve standing in (cold!) when the cops came. It had water in it again, but apparently for a while it was empty.

The serving itself was kind of intense, with some sort of crazy people coming by, and two guys getting into a physical confrontation. Thankfully nothing really bad happened, but it was kind of scary!

Later that night I went to a party and found somewhere to stay. Hurray! Then I threw up all night. Boo!

(Oh! One thing I should have mentioned about the last serving I went to in Portland was that there were people dressed up and playing croquet with bowling balls and sledge hammers! Awesome! I asked them about it, but they wouldn't give me a straight answer.)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Portland again

So I hit up some FNB servings while I was in Portland for the zine symposium last week. It doesn't seem possible to find out where they cook if you're only there for a brief period of time, as none of the websites/posters list cooking places, and the email bounces.

The Friday serving was kind of weird, in that they didn't provide any dishes. I felt that it kind of defeated the purpose of FNB (that anyone can come by and eat), if you have to bring your own dish/utensil. A girl I talked to who was serving felt the same way. Apparently people didn't want to wash all the dishes if everyone returned them. Blah.

Afterwards I went to the Red and Black cafe (a worker owned vegan cafe, with beer!)with some people, and we watched some people play music.

Saturday I tried going to an FNB, but it didn't happen. So I hung out with some other people that were waiting for it.

Sunday I went and found the FNB serving that I'd eaten with last time I was in town, and I ate some food and talked to them a little, but then I went back to hang out with the zine symposium people. Me and this other guy cycled along beside the river and hung out on an old, crumbling, concrete dock thing. Exciting!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Asstacular Adventures

I totally forgot one incredibly dramatic thing that happened at FNB in Seattle.

After we got back from serving and were hanging out, I sat on the arm of a couch, then slid backwards onto the seat part. I heard a ripping and realized that my pants had ripped.

In fact, basically the entire ass of my shorts was ripped, it was beyond fixing (short of large scale patching), so the next day I hit up a thrift store and just bought new ones. The old ones were kind of gross anyway.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


What happened at the Vancouver FNB serving last week? I have no idea, as I was in Seattle. However I did help out with a FNB serving there.

I checked their website, and saw that they had a serving on Sunday. So on Sunday I called them up to make sure the information was right.

It was, but in a hilarious coincidence nobody had the key to open the place. They promised to call me back when they did have a key.

So I hung out with the guy I was couchsurfing with, and a girl from Argentina who was also couchsurfing at his place. Before too long I got a call back, and me and the other couchsurfer walked down and found the place where they cooked.

We met one of the people involved outside and helped him bring in some stuff to cook. Including vegan donuts! Well, those weren't to cook, they were to eat.

There were quite a few people there to cook, but it was a new cooking space for them, and there wasn't that much room. Plus there were lots of comfy couches just outside.

I busied myself helping to make the best fruit salad I've ever had at a FNB serving (peaches and nectarines and grapes and pineapples and apples and pears!), but there was also soup, a big stirfry, and we made limeade. Yum.

Once we finished cooking, we loaded everything into a truck, and a bunch of people piled into that and a car and drive to the cooking location. Some people also stayed behind to help clean up.

We drove to the serving place, which was actually kind of far away, spilling a bunch of the limeade on the way. Once there the serving was pretty laid back (at least compared to Vancouver), though it happened in what was called "crack park" by some of the FNB people. Apparently sometimes it can get intense. I think one good thing was that since it was in a park (or a paved pedestrian area or whatever), is that people could sit and eat right there, come back for seconds if they wanted more, and give back dishes if they wanted to. Solid.

Of course we didn't have any forks to give to people at first. Someone went to a Subway to try and get some, but they only gave us six. So I donated a few dollars and he went off to a store and bought some. Hurray!

At the end, we gave away all the food, except a little bit of fruit salad that I then ate, and boxes and boxes of donuts.

We dropped off some produce at a shelter place. Then we headed back to do cleanup. Except there were too many people there, so a bunch of us just hung out and drank. Apparently sometimes they drink while cooking. Oh I wish we could have done that...

A bunch of people were going to a punk show afterward, but it seemed far away, so I took off. Still! If you are ever in Seattle on a Sunday you should check out FNB there as they are totally nice.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

That guy's a cycle path.

So Jim and Leilani were in Victoria for the ska festival, and lots of other people were busy. No food pick up was done, and nobody had the key. Would FNB even happen this week?

I had been in Victoria, but was cycling back so I could go to the Alice in Wonderland event at Trout Lake on Sunday. I'd expected to get into Vancouver around 3 or 4 and thought maybe I could eat some food and help with the washing up or something.

However, the person I was staying with in Victoria got up super early on Saturday to go to work, so I was off cycling by 7:30am. Around 8:30 I realized I could make it to the 9am ferry, so I cycled my ass off for the last 10km and made it to the ferry and was (I believe) the last person to get onto it (the ticket seller wasn't even sure if I could make it).

After falling asleep on the ferry ride across, I cycled for another couple of hours (including a van ride through a tunnel to get into Richmond) and got to Vancouver around 12:45.

Oh snap, that's early enough to get to FNB. I knew that nobody else would have gotten the key from Jim's place, and when I'd seen him the day before at ska fest I knew where it was. So I (painfully) cycled over to his place, got the key, and got downtown by about 1:45.

Sidney and her friend Ben were the only people there, but Katie (who didn't even think she could make it this week) soon showed up.

Sidney and I went to the grocery store, and came back loaded down with apples, pears, lemons, watermelons (not so hot), cantaloupes (yum), broccoli, onions, bananas, and baby carrots.

Katie made a huuuuge amount of banana bread. And banana bread muffins.

We soaked a bunch of lentils, and put those, the onions, spices, broccoli, and carrots together and made a good stew.

Then we chopped up loads of the fruit and made a big fruit salad.

Oh, and we made lemonade that we drank ourselves because there wasn't enough to serve.

We didn't make as much food as usual as we didn't start cooking until after 2, and I think it was the fastest serving ever!

Then Dave came by to help washing up the dishes! Awesome!

Props to Ben who did loads of work for someone's first time. He was a chopping machine.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Last (for me) Supper?

So maybe it was my last FNB in Vancouver? Or maybe I'll have a chance to do some in August. At any rate I'm leaving town to travel for a while and hopefully someone else can take over updating this thing.

The day didn't start off that great, as nobody had the key to open the cupboard, and none of the DERA employees seemed to be around. Not even Jim had the key, because someone else had taken it the week before.

Eventually (and thankfully) the person with the key showed up at about 2:15, which didn't leave us as much cooking time.

I made a rhubarb cake, and then felt sick/gross (damn disease!) so went off and did nothing for a while.

What else was made? Um, Zoe brought some hummus and potato salad from a wedding she'd been at. I think we made a salad with lettuce and peppers and stuff. We made a big stew thing with broccoli lentils and squash? I clearly don't remember as it was days and days ago and I have since cycled to another city.

Still, food not bombs is awesome.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Kitchen(er ) Helpers

Friday Jim and I did food pick up and got no tomatoes again. We were stunned. Lots of other decent looking stuff though.

Sadly we didn't get vegetables we could make sushi with, but maybe next week I will get to do that.

However, we did get a lot of cauliflower, and excited by that I decided to soak a bunch of the dried chickpeas we got last week so that I could make a chickpea-cauliflower curry. There were no potatoes, but what can you do?

So on Saturday I got to FNB fairly early as I had some errands to run before hand (buying wings, etc.). And it was lucky I did! Otherwise poor Sidney would have been there by herself not knowing what to do (and not being able to do anything as she didn't have keysssss).

I was lacking in keys too, but I had one to the back food storage area, so we were able to bring all the food out, set up the tables, and wash a bunch of pears in preparation of actually doing something. Around 1:45 no keyholder had shown up, but I was able to find one of the people that works at DERA who could open the cupboard with all of our stuff in it.

I hauled out the chickpeas and was like "Um, are they supposed to have lots of weird foam stuff on them?" Well, whatever. I rinsed them off and tossed them into a pot to boil and hoped they'd be ready in time for the serving.

In the meantime we got started chopping up pears and soon other people started arriving to help out. Including three people who were visiting Vancouver from Kitchener. They were friends of a friend and it was super awesome that they decided to come help out at FNB while they were here.

We chopped up onions (saving the frozen ones for when we don't get fresh ones) and garlic to act as bases for the two main food things. Then we made a stew thing with broccoli, spinach, and bell peppers (I think that was it?).

In another pot we cooked the cauliflower and put our single carrot and not enough spices into it. Oh well. About half an hour before the serving we drained the chickpeas and added them to the cauliflower stuff and it actually tasted really good! Success!

I don't know how the other one tasted, and the pears weren't the softest (I think we need a better masher), but Jim's banana bread (cooked using the recipe he submitted to the FNB cooking zine as a guide) turned out well, as usual.

Oh, and we made a fruit salad with bananas, pears, and some apples, and ice tea to drink.

I don't know how the serving went (slower than usual I heard), because I was washing dishes inside. I'll have to ask the Kitchener kids what they thought.

Next week is my last week at Vancouver FNB! Oh no!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

FNB Photo!

And oooh, look, one of the photos taken for the Megaphone article is on a different website.

Food Not Bombs in Megaphone Magazine

Check it out!

"Have you ever wondered what happened to that bruised apple you passed up at the grocery store? Chances are it was thrown away before it had a chance to even go bad. But thanks to the Vancouver chapter of Food Not Bombs, bruised apples have may end up in a pot or on a cutting board in the Downtown Eastside.

Food Not Bombs (FNB) is a grassroots activist organization started in 1980 by American anti-nuclear activists who recovered and served food that would otherwise be thrown away as a form of non-violent protest."

More at

Megaphone's a cool magazine and you should read it anyway.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Two servings in two days

Saturday I woke up and realized it was already 1:16. Oh no! Food not bombs! I had to cook today too. Rarrrgh.

I hurridly got ready and blasted downtown in like 20 minutes, only to discover that I was the first person there.

Still, at least I was able to start taking out a bunch of the vegetables and bread and stuff that we had, and Jake soon showed up to help me out with that. And then Yifan showed up to get the utensils and stuff out.

I think for some of us, cooking two days in a row led to something of a burnout, as we didn't seem to produce that much food (though apparently not that many people came by to eat, so I guess it worked out okay).

First thing to do was throw out the really gross box of...Chinese green leafy stuff. Ick. We also threw out a gross bag of beetroot, and I hope that box of spiky things was thrown out too. Ew.

We chopped up a million onions, and all cried at least a little bit. We froze a bunch so that hopefully some of them will be okay for next week.

We also cut up the rest of the leeks from the day before and added those to the onions. Then we tossed in some black beans we'd started soaking the day before, some potatoes, some squash, and a bunch of green beans (less gross than usual!).

Oh wait, maybe we didn't put any of the green beans into that. As we cooked those seperately.

We also cooked some rice. Though apparently we don't have any left. Hmm.

And a dessert thing. A pear crumble/crisp. Except that this time we had oats! So it was a million times better than the last ones we made. And either these were less juicy pears, or the oats absorbed all the liquid, because they were as weirdly soaking as previous times when we've cooked it.

Jim and James both showed up to help with the serving, which was awesome, as a bunch of people had left just before then. I didn't feel up to serving today, so I just washed up all the dishes, allowing us to leave by about 5:30, even though we didn't start the serving until really late. For reals!

Come help us next week, when we're back to just one serving a week. 1pm (or so) Saturday, 12 E Hastings. Knock on the door and someone should let you in.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Cooking the book(fair)s

Aaaaaah. So much cooking. (No update last week as I was barely at FNB and I didn't remember what happened. I was crashing the anime convention.)

Thursday Yifan, Jim, and I did food pick up and got some aaaaaweeeesome stuff from the supermarket. Two shoping carts full of it. Fantastic.

Friday I went and photocopied a bunch of cooking zines (these ones are not as nice as the originals). Then went down to DERA to start cooking.

Yifan and Jim went to Quest and got us some papaya (which we never used? hm....), broccoli, leaks, and a huge pile of spices/herbs. Stellar.

Jake, Sasha, Soairse, and their friend whose name I don't remember, showed up and we started chopping vegetables and stuff. Jim had to take off after not too long, but we managed fine without him.

We made a big soup thing, with leeks, broccoli, onions, and... um. I don't know, some other things. Oh! It had lentils in it, because someone just donated us a massive amount of dried lentils/beans. Fantastic!

Then we made an apple sauce thing (shocking), and I put too much cinanmon in, but we were able to put more pears in to make it edible.

We also roasted a bunch of zucchini and yams, both of which came out really well and were super delicious. Yum Yum.

Was that it? I don't think we made anything else.

We put everything into a van that belonged to...someone. And headed over to where the Anarchist bookfair was happening.

Oh yeah! And apparently the anarchist bookfair forgot to put us on their schedule after inviting us to come. Way to go guys. (edit: apparently we were on some info?)

A guy called Miles (Myles?) who knew the girls brought us some sushi to serve. Wikkid.

We served through one of those weird serving windows from a small room off their kitchen. What was super awesome was that we were mostly able to use dishes that were already there, and not have to use any lame styrofoam ones. Yes! And because the sink was right there (and because people at the bookfair offered to wash dishes) we were able to just use and reuse the same plates. Even better.

Oh! And for once we didn't have too much bread. We didn't have enough! This was amazing.

Anyway, people seemed to really appreciate that we were there and some guy even cleaned the really big pot for us (!!!).

Yifan and I hung around until all the food was gone (and we thought we'd made too much), then put everything back into the van and went back to DERA to finish cleaning (which didn't take too long). We even got some donation money! And some people bought zines and maybe patches. Solid.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Anarchist Bookfair Serving!

So we are do a special serving for the anarchist bookfair happening this weekend! We decided that the serving should take place at 6:00 so we should assemble to cook at 4pm. (AT DERA,as per usual)

The bookfair is happening at the Russian hall and so the decision was to cook at DERA and deliver it already cooked to the hall- we have a vehicle lined up, I believe (thanks Yifan!)

Food pick up is going down on thursday, - hopefully Quest & DERA. If you can help with pick up you can shout it out here or get in touch with Yifan/Jim/Matthew.

We will still do regular Pickup/Serving on saturday!

Monday, June 8, 2009


I came to Portland for the anarchist bookfair armed with the FNB cooking zine.

Or almost, I hadn't finished putting it together (not even close to be honest), and it still needed covers. And space filling drawings.

I drew some stick men and stuff on the train down, and drew the covers to both sides (or "drew" as it is just sorta fancy lettering).

On the second day here, my friend and I went off to find a photocopying place. While he photocopied his anti-olympics stuff, I drew the last cover, and tried to put things in order.

Oh wait, I forgot the part where I crashed my bicycle after slipping on wet tram tracks and cut my thumb and my knee. Rargh.

I spent a couple of hours there getting everything done, but I think in the end they came out pretty well.

I traded some to some people, and gave some others away. Hopefully people like them.

In regards to FNB down here, I tried and failed to find out when/where a group cooked. Considering they seem to serve six times a week this was impressive!

I did manage to find the very end of a serving in a park on Sunday and talked to a couple of the people who had cooked the food. It seems that there's actually a bunch of different FNB groups in town, and they serve in different areas and sometimes don't know each other at all! I thought that was kind of cool. They had lots of bread, and I ate some lentils, and talked to a homeless guy who had given out fake/informative "you can not sleep outside" tickets to people who had camped out waiting for a parade. (Sleeping outside in Portland is illegal, except for people waiting for this parade. Strange.)

Today I tried to find another serving (after getting the info from a flyer), and I went to the right place at the right time, but it didn't seem to be happening. I asked a woman in the park, and she said I was the second person to ask her about it.

I went back to the place I was staying and discovered that it didn't happen on Mondays any more (out of date flyer!). Boourns.

How was Vancouver?

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Chik'n Eatza

There are definitely weeks where going into a large, warm, windowless room for 4-5 hours on a beautiful Saturday afternoon is not exactly what I want to do. But I go anyway.

This week Jim did food pickup by himself and, when not injuring himself, got a bunch of food!

"...after overloading the cart with tomatoes, radishes, cantaloupe and some plantain like thing the sunrise grocery people were hollering at me to come back. I went back and saw that the guy had two small boxes on them and I read on the box 'chicken breast' and I tried to explain that I didn't want it but then they opened the box up and I reread the package again and realized I had missed a key part of the name which was 'Veggie Chicken Breast'."

So we cooked up some of the veggie chicken breasts, and it was super weird, boil in a bag stuff. We weren't sure what to do with it at first, but someone had the bright idea of making (lots of) sandwiches. Yum.

We also made a hot pear thing, which I accidentally added garamasala to instead of cinnamon (we managed to wash it off before I ruined the hot thing again), a fruit salad, a stew/soup thing, and a salad. And I think that was it? Maybe I am forgetting something. We also had some bread and muffins and stuff to give out.

Oh, and the radishes turned out to be disgusting and leak brown liquid over everything, and the plantains were actually weird bananas that I didn't like the taste of that much, were fairly squishy, and broke the bottom of a box when I tried to move it outside.

Still, there were some new people that came, we cooked and served a bunch of food (so much fruit salad), and some people gave me recipes for the cookbook zine. So a successful day in all.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Iron Chef East Hastings

There are weeks where Food Not Bombs can feel more like Iron Chef than anything else. We get a theme ingredient and a time limit and have to cook as many different dishes as possible.

This week's theme ingredient was most assuredly Asian pears. Sure we had the normal several boxes of tomatoes, but we always have those (except last week). And while we usually have pears too, this time we had two entire boxes full of them. How the hell were we going to use up all of those?

Thankfully we had a massive group of people there to help cook this week. I'm not even going to attempt to list names, as I can't remember who was there. Thanks to everyone for coming though!

And happy birthday to Ricky. Zoe even made him a cake and we sang "happy birthday" and everything. (This was a cake filled day.)

Okay, so what could we make with all of the pears?

First up was our pear sauce (which we just called "apple sauce" when we served it, and which one regular to our servings called our "famous apple sauce." Stellar!). Cut up lots of pears (or apples) toss them into a pot with some sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and any other delicious spices you can think of. Mix occasionally. As we learned last week, the pears are fiilllllllled with liquid. It's crazy how much comes out of them when you cook them.

Well that was...a lot of pears, but we still had an apparently almost infinite amount left to use. A fruit salad was a totally go, as we also had watermelons and bananas. But still. An entire box was still left!

Shannon said she knew a recipe for a pear cake (or just a recipe for a cake that could be modified to include pears?) so using various cake ingredients (like egg replacer! Thanks Anna/Laura!) we mixed it up and put it made a "fluted tube pear cake" in our fluted tube cake dish.*

And still so many left, so we put them in Pigeon park after the serving.

Meanwhile... Jim was making some banana bread, as he does every chance he gets. It is delicious. I have no idea if he even uses the same recipe every time or just finds random ones online and modifies them to what we have. It works out well anyway.

Since we were in a baking mood, we checked to see what else we could do. Hey, we have these weird cake mixes we will possibly never use. And lots of zucchini. So chocolate zucchini...whats? Do we have more cake dishes? No, but there were lots of muffin trays. Dice the zucchini, mix up the stuff, fill up the trays. Into the oven. Result: 42 regular sized cupcakes, and 12 mini ones. Yeah, they weren't the greatest, but they were still good.

Plus! We made lots of other food too, but I guess I just like writing about baking more. We actually had to have both tables outside with everyone standing behind it to serve everything. We had so many dishes we were out that serving forever! And nobody's plate/container was big enough to hold everything.

A guy from Megaphone also showed up to take some photos of us to go with the article that Katie wrote. Someone else at the serving took photos too. You should upload them somewhere and let us know!

So what did we make? Well, there was a stew thing (which I don't think I even saw! I'm sure it was good though), rice, a salad (tomato and lettuce and a home made dressing), a fruit salad (bananananana, watermelon, and more pear), just plain watermelon we chopped up and put into hollowed out watermelon halves, sandwiches (tomato, lettuce, mustard, margarine), raisin bread with more margarine, and sugary ice tea from a lableless tube.

The only downside was that we couldn't serve in the sun. Still better than serving in the dark like we do in winter time.

Dang, I write a lot. Do you want to write for this blog? Let me know!

Remember! Cookbook deadline is this weekend, please give me a recipe.

*A bundt cake dish thing. But the back of a box called it a fluted tube.

Sunday, May 24, 2009


So last Friday Jim and I did pickup for FNB. On our way back we realized that the sidewalk on the side of the road we were walking down was blocked off, so we'd have to go down East Hastings. Jim was convinced that our box full of bananas would be half empty, from people asking for them, by the time we got to DERA.

However, it wasn't the bananas that anyone wanted. Instead it was the box full of watermelons that led one woman to chase after us after we'd ignore her yelling, grab onto us/the cart and at first demand a watermelon, and then offer to trade us weed for one.

As Jim is straight edge, and I don't smoke that stuff, she wasn't really offering a very tempting trade. However she didn't seem to understand that we didn't want it (or that we said we'd be serving food for free the next day), she kept offering us more of the weed she had. I guess concepts like straight edge aren't that well known on East Hastings.

We managed to get back to DERA without losing a watermelon, and we gave a banana to the one guy that asked for one.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sugar and snails (Food not bombs cookbook?)

1. I am going to the Portland anarchist bookfair in a couple of weeks and realized that all my current zine projects were things I didn't want to actually make. So instead I want to make a FOOD NOT BOMBS COOKBOOK. Yes it deserves all caps.

I want to make it a split book that has two covers and you flip it over. One side will be called Sugar and Snails, and the other side will be Slugs and Spice (after "sugar and spice and everything nice" and "slugs and snails and puppy dog tails"). One half is baking and desserts, and the other half is cooking. Oh! It'll all be vegetarian/vegan too.

I want it to be incredibly readable. ie. even if you don't want to cook anything you will still read it because it is interesting/funny. So your recipe should be half recipe/half anecdote (how you discovered the recipe, what happened some time you made it, etc.).

Or you could just write a food not bombs related story or something. Or write about the history of Vancouver FNB. Or draw me a picture. Or whatever. I will probably write about my experiences doing food not bombs in Malaysia and stuff.

I know this is not much time, but it'd be sweet if you could send me something for it! It doesn't have to be that long/well written even. I can edit it if you like, or leave it as is.

I will give you all copies once it's done! And computer files if I use them so you can make your own.

Please contribute! Plz!

2. I'm also doing an activist/anarchist/alternative/awesome guide to Vancouver for the anarchist bookfair (and beyond). So if you have some place that you think is awesome and that more people should know about, let me know about it so I can include it. Copies will be available (free!) at the anarchist bookfair next month and at other things. Yay!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

A shocking lack of tomatoes

This week Jim went to the grocery store and didn't get a single tomato. We were all completely shocked. What we did get were some gross cauliflowers, three boxes of broccoli, a box of bok choi, several bags of pears, a papaya, a melon, and a solitary banana.

Plus all that bread that magically appears every week. And caused a conflict when I told a resident of the building to ask us before they start looting muffins. (I don't care if they take them, just ask!)

Later Graham and another guy who's name I forgot showed up with backpacks full of boxes of just-past-best-by-date baby food. It was basically just flour and stuff, and we totally used some of it.

I showed up a little after one, and some of the guys who are organizing the Vancouver anarchist book fair were there. I think they were talking about using the space? But I have no idea, as they didn't talk to me about that. Note to self: Check out Russian hall kitchen and see what the deal is about us cooking there.

I set up the stuff, and soon Ricky showed up and we started cutting up pears. Well he (and Dave) did. I decided I was going to make rice pudding, carnsarnit. I had bought four litres of soy milk a few days before as it was like a dollar more than buying two litres, and I wanted to make rice pudding. Why was I so excited about it? I have no idea, but I've wanted to make it for ages. The only time I've actually had home made rice pudding was in an activist community centre I stayed at in Melbourne, Australia (they also did Foot Not Bombs there!). Before that I had no idea you could even do that!

So I checked the cupboard and discovered that shit, didn't we used to have loads of rice? And now all we had was a bag of weird Italian rice. I decided to go with it, because Food Not Bombs is totally about experimental cooking. So I cooked up the rice (which actually turned out to be a really good rice to use for this), added the soymilk (using the same amount as the rice, which was two big yogurt containers), and lots of cinnamon, nutmeg, and sugar. Delicious! Oh hey! And some raisins. Sweet.

Meanwhile we were cutting up a storm of cauliflower and broccoli. The cauliflower was super gross, and I took the task of getting it out of the bags and cutting off all the really nasty bits (and just throwing some of them out entirely). Ew squish squish squish. But yeah, nobody wants to do that. katie did the far more palatable task of cutting up the less gross parts.

Graham and his friend (why can't I remember his name. Dang) set to making some sort of soup/stew/stuff that is an FNB staple. What goes in it? Bok choi! Broccoli! Spices! Cans of tomatoes in the cupboard. A huge can of tomato juice I didn't think we would ever use for anything. More spices! Mix 'em and cook 'em in a pot like gumbo.

Meanwhile, it was decided that since we only had pears we'd make some sort of hot thing, as a bowl of chopped up pears is kind of depressing (we ended up serving some of it anyway). So we set to making a crumble of some kind and baking that stuff. Last time I had used a recipe from the internet that was two parts margarine to one part flour and one part sugar. This time we decided to use some of the baby food, a lot of our precious, precious oil, sugar, and the banana. It sugary olive oil. Uhm. Okay. On top of the pears and into the oven it goes.

But what were we going to do with all the broccoli? How about roasting it? With spices. Let's get to it. They turned out really well, and we totally would have done more if the ovens hadn't been filled with cookies.

Cookies you say? Well after thinking about making some sort of pudding out of all the baby food stuff, Whitney and Zoƫ went about making some cookies, filled with cocoa powder and carob chips and other yum things.

Why is the crumble filled with liquid? What the hell? I guess pear's are liquidy. We tossed all three pans of it into a bowl, where the crumblelyness of it was kind of lost, and it was just a sugary, hot pear thing. At least it went well with the rice pudding.

The stew thing needs more something! We cooked up some spaghetti and put that in, but we really should have just chopped up a couple of baguettes and used those instead. We were fools!

Looking at our plate situation, Katie and I headed to the army navy store were we bought like 75 horrible stryofoam plates. I was going to buy the more expensive paper ones until Katie informed me (using info from an article she'd written last year) that they weren't any better for the environment. Sad.

Upon returning, we felt crazy hot in our horrible, unwindowed, cooking space. Oh! That tray is too big for the oven, and the door is open, so all the heat is escaping. Crud. Wouldn't it be nice to cook outside? I think for the anarchist bookfair thing we should do all the vegetable chopping and stuff at MacLean park if it's nice out.

Oh, and that guy with the rabbit was there again.

The serving.

Actually went really well. The people all seemed really nice today. Nobody really got mad or anything. We seemed to give out less bread than ever, and we were so close to my dream of an all dessert FNB serving.

The final dishes were:
The stew thing with chopped up spaghetti in it.
The small amount of roast vegetables (delicous).
The hot pear thing with some crumbleyness.
The rice pudding.
The uncooked pears.
The cookies.
The presliced bread.

Plus all the other bread, pastries, boxes of baby food, and boxes of broccoli we had left over.

It generally seemed to be well received.

The clean-up.

No cloths again! Oh, we had one. That meant that while we (and by "we" I mean Katie) managed to wash everything, it wasn't the driest when it went back in the cupboard.

What was missing this week (remember to lock the door carefully):
The CD player.
The bag with all the patches.

What was new:
That gross popcorn pot we left out last week.
A bag of flour.

Next week: photos!