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
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