In the Kitchen with Friends

May29

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As indicated at the end of my previous Canola Connect Camp post, the next stop for campers was the gorgeous Jane’s Restaurant at the Paterson GlobalFood Institute at the downtown campus of Red River College. The teaching restaurant is located in a former bank building with its statuesque pillars and vaulted ceilings.

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We didn’t have much chance to work up an appetite, but there were amazingly delicious appetizers waiting for us including these gorgeous vegetable packets.

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My foodie friend Getty (a Home Economist) and I donned our chef hats and were ready to receive instruction. Getty is the originator of Manitoba Fruit Share and appears regularly on CTV Morning Live.

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We were given the opportunity to assemble an appetizing salad of mixed greens with a berry vinaigrette. My result is pictured below.

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Chef Kelsey Fitzgerald finished her classes for graduation that very day but stuck around to teach us how to construct the “soft cooked egg” in the toast cup. She demonstrated the molecular gastronomy techniques using curried pumpkin for the yolk and cauliflower puree for the white. So cool! You may recognize my culinary teammate Pay Chen formerly of breakfast TV in Winnipeg. She now resides and continues to pursue her passion for food in Toronto.

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Another esteemed chef- Chef Jeremy Langemann, the former Executive Chef at the Velvet Glove and the Fairmount Winnipeg Hotel is on staff at RRC. He is seen above chatting with Virgin radio’s Chrissy Troy while cutting the fresh pasta that we would hand roll into tortellini and then stuff with wild mushrooms. Chrissy is proud to declare that she is a Manitoba farm girl who is passionate about the prominent place agriculture plays in our provinces’ economy and on the world stage.

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My tortellini packets were a disaster and Chef Jeremy patiently discarded them and then rolled out new sheets of dough for me to try again. In the end, the results were nutritious and delicious, especially when pulled braised short rib adorned the pasta packages.

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Simply grilled vegetables accompanied the main and I indulged in my veggie crush-eggplant!

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My friend and Chocolatier Constance Popp knows a thing or two about delectable treats and expertly held the tongs at one of the many donut bar stations.

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Chef Mary Jane Feeke of Benjamin’s Gourmet Foods in Selkirk is RRC’s Chef Instructor for pastries. She instructed foodie friends including hunting and fishing aficionado Shel Zolkewicz and me on the fine art of donut making. Shel also makes regular TV appearances and her food photography is nothing short of exquisite!

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One donut favourite were the S’mores- gingered donuts with madirafolo ganache and roasted vanilla bean marshmallow. Say that three times fast!

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These two donut fusions were also lovingly created and served:

  • A rooibos and citrus infused donut with lemon and orange glaze, and candied citrus peels
  • A cinnamon donut filled with whipped cinnamon cream, and apple compote, drizzled with cinnamon glaze

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My favourite was this sweet and salty invention-a nutmeg donut filled with apricot ganache, glazed with caramel fondant and garnished with crumbled crispy maple bacon. Heaven, I’m in heaven….

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As we headed out of Jane’s and back through the Winnipeg streets en route to our hotel, I looked around at the exquisite room one last time. I noticed this time that the carved ceiling was of fruits and vegetables. Perhaps the former bank was always destined to become a restaurant!

The next day the Canola Connect Campers were off on yet another adventure. Stay tuned.

Jane's on Urbanspoon

Kath’s quote: “Cooking is in an honest profession where you cannot hide and let others do the work for you. You have to show up, work hard and prove you can do it faster and better. And find a mentor who will recognize your talent and push you in the right direction.”-Marcus Samuelsson

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Live simply, laugh often, love deeply.

 

 

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