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Winnipeg Free Press - Section D - - FRONT PAGE -

HE Prairie prov­inces are un­der­ap­pre­ci­ated in Canada,” says food writer and doc­u­men­tary food pho­tog­ra­pher CJ Katz. “We don’t rah-rah and toot our own horns, and that might be part of it.” so cooks can take ad­van­tage of farm­ers’ mar­kets and gar­dens.

“It’s a non-tra­di­tional ap­proach to Prairie cook­ing,” Katz ex­plains. “You won’t find per­o­gies and cab­bage rolls.” The start­ing point is Prairie pro­duce. “It’s very in­gre­di­ent-driven. I look at the in­gre­di­ents and try to do some­thing fresh.”

Al­berta beef be­comes Korean flank steak, and ten­der Prairie lamb gets Mid­dle Eastern flavours in orange-spiced ke­babs. Bi­son, which Katz adores for its lean­ness and flavour, gets cooked up in a stir­fry. Sweet straw­ber­ries are fin­ished with bal­samic vine­gar and pep­per. Spelt and hemp give a nu­tri­tional kick to favourite cook­ies.

Katz adds some in-depth re­search into food his­tory and cook­ing lore. (Fun facts: Ev­i­dence of len­tils dates to a Greek cave as far back as 11,000 BCE. The saska­toon berry is also called the ser­vice­berry. Many of the wild mush­rooms in our bo­real forests end up on the tables of high­end restau­rants in Europe and Ja­pan.)

“I love Prairie cook­ing. I love the whole­some­ness,” says Katz. “This is the cen­tre of Canada. This is where it’s grown.” To cel­e­brate the rich and var­i­ous tastes of our prairie har­vest, here are three au­tum­nal recipes from Taste:

ALI­SON GILL­MOR

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