Brewers Plate: Making Local Food Taste Great in April is No Small Feat
Jamie Kennedy dishing it out at last year's Brewers Plate
It started in Philadelphia four years ago as a way to "highlight the city's unique flavor and culinary culture." It came to Toronto to answer the question:
What does a local sustainable feast look like in April in southern Ontario? Artisanal cheeses, breads, local fish, sausages, roasts and stews of wild game and root vegetables, local greenhouse produce, pickles and preserves of every description, fruit pies -- the work of many chefs -- and of course, libations from our fine Ontario craft brewers.
Last year; photo by Yvonne Bambrick or Molly Crealock
And given the paucity of ingredients at this time of year, it is surprisingly good. Chefs this year include Jamie Kennedy, "known for his legendary commitment to environmental issues and his support for organic agriculture, local producers and traditional methods." See him in TreeHugger: Jamie Kennedy picks Organic Wines and A Trip to Italy and Michael Pollan, Too
Also cooking are Karen Vaz of Rebel House, Mark Cutrara of Cowbell, (See TreeHugger:Seasonal Restaurants are a New Gourmet Trend Brad Long of Veritas, Mark Breton of the Gladstone Hotel, and Brook Kavanagh of La Palette.
The venue is changed this year, to Hart House at the University of Toronto, and the price is changed too, a third less than last year, now under a hundred bucks.
If people think at all about seasonal food up here, right now they are dining on Peruvian asparagus and California artichokes. The wonderful thing about the Brewers Plate is that they do it in April, showing such creativity with such a limited range of ingredients, proving that you can eat local and eat very well all year round, even in colder climes.
Local Food Plus: Local Flavour Plus - Bringing Local Food to Big Buyers : TreeHugger and Local Food: The New Competitive Edge, and Slow Food Toronto.
Can't Get to Toronto? Make your own feast with recipes from Planet Green:
Make a Delicious Winter Salad
Soup of the Week: Jerusalem Artichokes
Try Cabbage Two Ways
Soup of the Week : Make the Most of Those Parsnips