“Eat Alberta shares food knowledge and tells the stories behind the people, local ingredients, and techniques to all who yearn to know more. This is our way to connect to our shared home of Alberta.” – Eat Alberta website
If you’ve never attended Eat Alberta, now’s the time to buy your ticket for the April 23 symposium. The format has changed somewhat this year. It’s still a full day, but class time has lengthened and number of classes has lessened. This way, attendees get more information, more interaction with presenters, and more time spent getting their hands dirty. Brunch and beverages are also included and you get to listen to CBC Edmonton AM’s Mark Connolly emcee the event while the “Mayor of 104 Street”, community activist, and a founding director of the Edmonton Downtown Farmers’ Market Association, Jon Hall, gives the keynote speech.
A bonus to the brunch speaking lineup is Cowboy Smithx, producer/actor, and the speaker series Redx Talks founder. This is going to be good.
The presenters this year are some of Edmonton’s finest and funnest, and were chosen because of their connection to cultural cuisine. It also speaks to our celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday this year and the multiculturalism that we cherish.
Shane Chartrand is the Executive Chef at Sage (at the River Cree Casino). Shane will be teaching and talking about Aboriginal Canadian food. If you’ve ever been around Shane, you’ll know he’s a great story teller, passionate about his culture, and always grateful to share his food with people. You’ll also get to help make (and eat!) bannock and bison stew.
Steve Brochu is the Executive Chef at Chartier, the restaurant in Beaumont that just snagged top spot in Avenue Magazine’s 2017 Best New Restaurant category. Steve will be talking about French Canadian cuisine and instructing the class on making tourtière, a dish that originated in Quebec.
Allan Suddaby’s class on Eastern European food in Canada will be a hot ticket. Be prepared, in short time, to become a Suddabite; it’s inevitable. Allan’s sessions are always exuberant, interesting and enlightening. Allan is the Executive Chef at Elm Catering, but spends a lot of his time crafting his McKernan Foodworks products, teaching cooking classes, and posting on his Button Soup blog (which is totally worth checking out). His session at Eat Alberta will be all about perogies, sauerkraut, and the importance of preserving.
New to the Eat Alberta classroom, is Kitty Poon. Kitty’s session will be about the fascinating story of Chinese restaurants on the prairies. You’ll not only learn to cook Kung Pao chicken and spring rolls, you’ll also learn how there came to be a Chinese restaurant in almost every single prairie town. Here’s a fun fact: ginger beef was invented in Calgary at the Silver Inn. Who knew!?
I wrote a blogpost about my experience at Eat Alberta 2012. Have a read, and then get your tickets. There are only 20 seats per session and the Eat Alberta crew was on CBC Edmonton AM this morning, so tickets are going to sell fast, now. I’ll see you there!