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The Week In Yum - The Food and Wine Show and My Upcoming Cooking Class

First things first:
On October 3 I am going to host my first in a series of cooking classes called "Not Your Grandmother's Rutabaga" at The Kingston Social in the east end of the city. I have spent years listening to friends complain that they don't know what to do with half of the produce they find in their CSA boxes come late fall and they end up throwing half of it out. Look, I get it. I grew up eating turnip twice a year, boiled and mashed with butter and brown sugar as part of our turkey dinner and hated it. It never occurred to me that what I was eating was actually a rutabaga and that there is so much life beyond boiling and mashing.
Let me help you. I will continue this series over the winter and strive to wow and delight and turn you into a root vegetable lover by the end of it all.
Click here to register and come learn how to teach some old dogs some new tricks

The highlight of my week was the first ever Food and Wine Show right here in Toronto. Food and Wine magazine has partnered up with the former Delicious Food Show to bring their travelling culinary foodgasm extravaganza to Canada, at last. For as long as I can remember, I would get my Food and Wine magazine every month and dream about attending one of their shows. Maybe I could swing San Francisco or, at least Miami if I planned far enough in ahead. I would look at all of the photos of celebrity chefs serving up all manner of delicacies, beautiful people dressed in beautiful clothing, sipping wine and chomping on canapes while Wolfgang Puck chuckled in the background.
Le sigh.

Well, this year, Toronto was added to the roster of stops and the show did not disappoint. Holding it at the Brickworks gave the show an air of urban sophistication and despite one day of rain, the weather made it feel more like a high end farmer's market than a Ginsu Knife demo at the CNE and I, for one, was thrilled.

The weekend was chock full of celebrity chef demos, talks and interactive workshops as well as a huge array of local chefs, caterers, wineries and other producers of delicious things offering samples of their wares for a buck or two. You filled your card 

Popular Toronto chefs like Matt Basile, Mark McEwan and Rob Gentile rubbed shoulders with International stars like Curtis Stone and Tyler Florence. Montreal's Antonio Park and Connie De Sousa from Calgary (and Top Chef Canada) joined a great collection of Canadian talent to round out the weekend. There was so much going on that the thought of writing it all is making me need a nap so go and read for yourself: Just read the schedule for the weekend

Tori's Bakeshop pumping out the smoked beet magic

You could have easily spent the entire weekend there and still had a hard time tasting everything that there was to taste. Cider seemed to be the "it" beverage this year and pork still reigns supreme although there was no shortage of vegetarian/vegan/gluten free options, so there was truly something for everyone .

I was thrilled to see my neighbourhood of The Beach represented by Tori's Bakeshop with her delicious crostini with smoked beets on cashew "chevre". The Beach is not really known for it's culinary delights and Tori's is certainly a bright spot in a dark corner of the east end. It seems I am the last to know that she runs an After Hours evening thing with wine, cocktails beer and a full dinner service with sharing plates so delicious you won't even notice that it's vegan. Okay, the vegans will now line up to throw rocks at me but I don't generally get all that excited about all vegan menus but I can get really excited about this one if that smoked beet crostini is any indication.

If you missed out on this show this year, don't despair because there is always next year.

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