Francisca’s Empanadas + stories of the early Berkeley Food Collective.

I left the comfort and safety of my home, left behind all the friends that I had forged into family, left behind the town I loved from rooftop to gutter. There is so much for me in Melbourne, but I left because I wanted to see what (and who) else the world had to offer.

I left to meet new people, cook, hear stories, share food, laughter, wine.

I flew in to the USA late sunday afternoon, my first stop on my new life of adventure, and on Monday I was fortunate enough to go to Davis, California, to stay with Francisca Rodriguez. She is an inspiring woman, full of stories of the old days when she worked at the Berkeley Food Collective with her Chilean husband. Francisca is from Mexican descent, and together, along with the other Latin American workers, they contributed one Latin American recipe each to the menu. Francisca learnt how to make empanadas there, both in the Chilean way and the Argentinian way, and I was blessed to have her spend the day showing me how to make them. My first day away from home, and I was launched straight into my new life with a bang – what better way than to be taught empanadas in California from such an interesting, amazing woman.
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