Prairie on your plate

Regina food writer, pho­tog­ra­pher CJ Katz takes a non-tra­di­tional ap­proach to eat­ing what the cen­tre of the con­ti­nent has to of­fer

Winnipeg Free Press - Section D - - FRONT PAGE -

Katz is happy to do some horn-toot­ing, start­ing with a new cook­book that cel­e­brates the bounty of Prairie food. Taste: Sea­sonal Dishes from a Prairie Ta­ble (Cana­dian Plains Re­search Cen­tre Press, 203 pages, $30) ex­plores a quiet re­gional cui­sine that is start­ing to come into its own, es­pe­cially with the new push to eat locally and sea­son­ally. Katz of­fers more than 120 fresh, straight-up recipes. She has also taken 160 pho­tos of food, along with the land and the peo­ple who pro­duce the food.

Born and raised in Ot­tawa, Katz moved to Regina in 2002 when her hus­band found a job there. Ini­tially re­luc­tant about the re­lo­ca­tion, she came to love her new home and is now a proud Prairie pros­e­ly­tizer. “The op­por­tu­ni­ties out West are amaz­ing,” says Katz, speak­ing on the phone from her home in Regina. Katz started as the culi­nary host for The Wheat­land Cafe, a Saskatchewan-wide CTV show, while ex­plor­ing the prov­ince’s food­ways for ra­dio, mag­a­zines and news­pa­pers. “I felt to­tally at home here,” says Katz. “We’re friendly out here, like it says on your li­cence plates.”

Taste con­cen­trates on food pro­duc­ers in Saskatchewan, but the in­gre­di­ents can be found Prairie-wide — bi­son, lamb, fresh­wa­ter fish, wild rice, spring as­para­gus, sum­mer berries, honey, bar­ley, flax and len­tils. Recipes are ar­ranged sea­son­ally

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