Making Change in How We Live, Where We Live, in Light of Climate Change (FOR TWELVE YEARS!)

Sunday, 29 September 2013


What a fantastic weekend at Foodival with a great range of Tooting food cooked up by local restaurants and local cooks. Music and comedy added to the mix.  Thanks to everyone who helped out, set up, cleared up performed or ate.  More of a report soon but here are a few photos for starters.

Saturday, 28 September 2013

We grew all this!

Thanks to all the fabulous donors at Foodival earlier today! Can you recognise anyone below? Come and try local food cooked up by a wide variety of Tootingites on Sunday at Tooting Market as Foodival continues.

Here's an eyewitness report of today's action:

Saturday night and it’s ‘half time’ in the weekend Tooting Foodival.
In the first half:
  • We’ve had a brilliant day of walk-in fruit and vegetable donations today: thanks so much to everyone. These ranged from the traditional to the unexpected – all fabulous. From cabbages, kale, carrots and mighty Tooting-grown south Asian curry leaves, outdoor dessert grapes from Balham and Pink Fir Apple potatoes grown by Gatton School.
  • And much more….some grown in allotments; some in backyards; some in pots on a fifth floor balcony above Clapham South.
  • We enjoyed cooking and food preparation demonstrations: squash soup, and later penne pasta with beetroot from Volker; freshly-cooked dosas by Mango Palace; mackerel filleted before our eyes by Rick from Rick’s Restaurant and prepared raw or lightly cooked. All tasting fresh and delicious, and the recipes will be online soon.      
  • Visitors talked about healthy eating and diet with Morgan and her colleagues, did some drawing with Jeni, played our Community Garden Seed Game, signed up for the TTT email list – and chatted with each other about all their impressions of the day.  
  • Thanks to all today’s volunteers who helped create such a good atmosphere – and as ever to Mushkil Aasaan for supporting us by providing the premises.
Tonight and tomorrow morning it’s time for team talks and strategy.
  • The local restaurant chefs and home cooks involved are preparing their dishes – many of them using ingredients collected today.
  • The distinguished judges in the ‘Top Tooting Cook’ informal competition are studying the criteria for tomorrow’s analysis and taste-off.
All welcome tomorrow for the action-packed second half.
  • We move to the Sunday venue Tooting Market, starting from 12:00. Top Tooting Cook judging is between 1:00 and 1:30 (with the results announced at 3:00). Visitors can sample local produce prepared by all the participating restaurants: all the details in the blog post below.
  • There’ll be plenty of varied dishes, plus music and comedy, until the referee’s whistle closes the 6th Tooting Foodival at 4:00.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

6th Tooting Foodival, this weekend 28th and 29th September. All welcome!

Transition Town Tooting present this year’s two-day Tooting Foodival which promises to be even bigger and better than the previous 5.
Foodival is a celebration of local growing and cooking
- with a sustainable slant. 
This year we've made a comprehensive booklet which describes all the whys and whats of the Foodival - plus giving more background on the many partners. It's a proud record of community activity in Tooting.
Click here to read or download a copy of the Foodival booklet

In summary, the Tooting Foodival is a free event for all the family which
runs over two days:
- on Saturday 28th Sept from 11:00-4:00 at Mushkil Aasaan, 222 Upper Tooting Road, SW 17 7EW

- on Sunday 29th Sept from 12:00-4:00 in Tooting Market, 21-23 Tooting High Street SW17 0SN

(click here for a copy of the poster)
Cooking demonstrations on the Saturday at Mushkil Aasaan by: Mango Palace, Rick's Restaurant, Volker Nissen, and guidance on healthy eating from Morgan Serres

Local restaurants who are cooking for the Sunday feast in Tooting Market, using the local produce collected on Saturday, include: Al Mirage, Lahore Karahi, Mis Bar Mleczny, Naked Loaf, Pooja, Rick's Restaurant, Spice Village

Also on Sunday in the market there'll be music and comedy from: Jonathan Buckley, Vincent Burke, The Bara Bara Band, Sam Quinn. Plus local stands and more activities...many thanks to all!

Top Tooting Cook
There is still time to enter this fun and informal  competition.  
See the video clip on the right of this blog and please call Mal on 07980 611704 if you are interested to take part or find out more and see the current contenders here.
Would you like to see the 'competition rules'? Please click here. Entrants to the cooks' competition will take away fruit and veg on Saturday to cook overnight for Sunday’s event at Tooting Market from noon to 4pm, vying to be crowned Top Tooting Cook. 

We grew the wheat in the Tooting Community Garden
- then we ground it into flour, in Tooting
- then Naked Loaf used the flour in sourdough bread
- and it's soon to be eaten in the Tooting Foodival!
Why do we run the Foodival? This will whet your appetite: 
Foodival has always relied on donations of fruit and vegetables from local growers, and on support from local enterprises and home cooks who help create the Sunday feast.
Even in the busy city environs of Tooting, many people are growing fruit and vegetables in their back gardens or allotments, in pots or on windowsills. Foodival aims to show that locally grown food is good for you and can be as tasty as food imported from elsewhere, while of course having a much smaller carbon footprint. 
We will showcase dishes with close to zero food miles.
And there will be more to get involved with on both days from local enterprises, community groups and artists.
We'd like to say a big thank you to Wandsworth Borough Council for event support through the WBC Eco Fund.

Come along and enjoy the fun,
and we look forward to seeing you there!

Monday, 23 September 2013

Plenty in the Edible Garden

Plenty in the Edible Garden at the weekend including this rather sorry looking but unperturbed fox cub!  That garlic should be good for those striving to be crowned "Top Tooting Cook" at Foodival.  Still plenty of time to enter, though judges have already ruled that "Renard du jardin communautaire au gratin" will not be a permitted dish ...

Thursday, 19 September 2013

TTT's latest email update Sept 19th: local food and growing with Edible Gardens and the Foodival

The latest update is all about food and growing local - because we have the Edible Gardens Open Day on Sat 21st, and then the Foodival on Sept 28th & 29th. All welcome to both!

In case you don't receive our updates by email - you can read a copy by clicking here. Do mail us at if you would like to be on the distribution list.

Monday, 16 September 2013

Foodival 2013

Transition Town Tooting present our 6th Foodival on the 28th and 29th September 2013, and this year’s two day event promises to be even bigger and better than the previous 5! 

Foodival is a celebration of local growing and cooking with a sustainable slant.  Even in the busy city environs of Tooting, many people are growing vegetables and fruits in their back gardens, allotments, in pots or on windowsills.  Foodival aims to show that locally grown food can be just as tasty and good for you as food imported from elsewhere, while of course having a much smaller carbon footprint.  We will showcase dishes with close to zero food miles. 
Competing Cooks

Foodival has always relied on donations of fruit and vegetables from local growers and this year is no different.  On Saturday 28th Sept., at Mushkil Aasaan in Upper Tooting Road, volunteers will be accepting donations of any tasty Tooting fruit and veg from local people.  Local chefs and home cooks will then use all this lovely produce to create fabulous Tooting dishes while there will also be several professional cooking demonstrations using the donated food. 

Entrants to the cook’s competition (want to join the cook's here?) will take away fruit and veg to cook overnight for Sunday’s event at Tooting Market, vying to be crowned Top Tooting Cook. Local restaurants have also accepted the challenge to do likewise meaning that Sunday’s event will have a wide variety of Tooting food cooked up by Tooting people. All that’s needed is some Tooting Eaters to sample and enjoy the bounty! Sunday in the market will have live music, comedy, local stalls, games with prizes, the cook’s competition and a wide variety of food to sample.  

Foodival is a free event for all the family.  Come along and enjoy the fun, 

Meanwhile final plans will be discussed at a meeting at the Wheatsheaf tomorrow night (Tues 17th at 7pm).  To get involved in any way, please come along or contact Dave Mauger on  

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Edible Open Gardens Day in Community Garden, Saturday 21st Sept

'Edible Open Gardens Day' celebrates local gardening and food, and is taking place across dozens of London gardens.
Click here for Sustain's blog about the event.

We're pleased to be taking part, and the Tooting Community Garden will be open for an extra day from 11:00 until 3:00 on Saturday 21st September.
Please come and visit if you have not been before, or if you have been many times....
ALL WELCOME - and it's free.

Click here to read a copy of the flyer, which includes some of the plant prints that the Challenge volunteers made recently in the garden.

We'll be gardening, harvesting and sharing knowledge on local growing and cooking. There'll be plenty to do for adults, children and families.

Bring a picnic - that will make the sun come out!
And we'll be preparing for the 6th Tooting Foodival - details here - on the following weekend (28 & 29 Sept) - do come and give us a hand.

Have a look at recent activity in the garden on Facebook:

For any more information, email:
See you there!

Monday, 9 September 2013

Young people volunteering at the Tooting Community Garden, Sunday 8th Sept

Thanks a lot to the young people who came along to the garden for four and a half hours, in rain and sun (they are taking part in a Challenge Network programme).
What did we do?
The young people selected from a set of helpful jobs in the garden:

> They ground our bread wheat into flour
They used creative ways to thresh the wheat (to separate the seeds from the heads); and to winnow it (getting rid of the chaff mixed in with the wheat kernels). Then they milled it into flour. (Come to the Tooting Foodival and you can try Tooting Sourdough bread made with this flour by Furzedown's Naked Loaf)
Or: gently treading on the heads

Bashing the seed heads against the wall

Milling the wheat into flour

Blowing the chaff away

> They saved home-grown sunflower seeds to sow next year
> They picked a lot of brambles for the Tooting Foodival
> They cleared up rubbish out in the entrance to the Garden
> They prepared a plot and then sowed 'green manure' seed
> They made a series of plant prints for us to use as posters:
Pleased with a full-size print of a sweet corn plant
The day - like any day in the Community Garden - was not only about doing tasks. We looked at what's growing, tried radishes and rocket, chatted together, sheltered under the holm oak for lunch, experienced of being outdoors all day. And the group prepared a bit more for the one-day project they have designed, which takes place on 21st September on Tooting Common - more info to come on their Facebook page here.
Many thanks to the other garden volunteers and families who came along yesterday, and to Adrian for the loan of the flour mill.
It was a really good day!
PS: in a fortnight, on Saturday 21st Sept from 11:00-3:00, the Community Garden will be open as part of the London-wide Edible Gardens Open Day. More info to come.