Tag Archives: Alberta at Noon

#LongTableDinners – my @AlbertaatNoon column for April

the table is set for a season of long table dinners - photo - Karen Anderson

the table is set for a season of long table dinners – photo – Karen Anderson

The Guinness World Record for the longest of long table dinners is 1.286 kilometres.

The record was set in August of 2014 in Finland where the long table dinner was measured with three decimal precision to eek out Spain’s record of 1.258 kilometres. This record has toppled more than once in the last few years proving that long table dinners are “a thing”. But are they truly a new phenomenon or are they an exaggeration of an age old tradition?

This post will look at this trend in dining and the list of long tables setting up for an exciting season of outdoor dining in Alberta this year. Check out a holiday menu inspired by this phenomenon here.

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My @AlbertaatNoon podcast on Corner Grocers and food shopping #trends

CBC Radio One’s Alberta at Noon host Donna McElligott and I had a lot of fun reminiscing about Corner Grocers today. Catch the podcast and let me know if you have access to a great up and coming corner grocer or small general store in your area. I’d love to hear about it.

I’ve always felt I was born to GROCERY shop. It’s my favourite thing to do. I’m just a little picky about where I do it. That’s the key to making it fun. Check out my visit to three fun Corner Grocers and the recipes they inspired when you get the chance.

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Corner Grocer Goodies inspire a whole menu of recipes for my @AlbertaatNoon column – March 2015

Waldorf Astoria Cake Revival - photo - Karen Anderson

Waldorf Astoria Cake Revival – photo – Karen Anderson

I got so inspired by the quality of ingredients I found at three corner grocers in Calgary today that I came home and made a fennel salad with blood oranges, avocado and shrimp; a star anise and shitake mushroom short rib slow cooked stew and – the piece de resistance – a beloved old recipe for Waldorf Astoria Mocha Cake. I think this would be a great make-ahead meal for entertaining.

Read on for the recipes and photos.

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Corner Store Revival – my March column for @AlbertaatNoon

Corner Grocer Goodies - photo - Karen Anderson

Corner Grocer Goodies – photo – Karen Anderson

Loblaws, Canada’s largest grocer, announced this week that they will add 50 stores and spend $1.2 billion on expanding their network and distribution. Walmart echoed this push announcing $300 million in expansion. Big chains are getting bigger. That is not a story.

The stories in the grocery world right now, for me, are two trends I’ve been watching.

One is happening in a big way south of the border with Amazon dot com. They’ve been a distributor of all things since the 90s and 15,000 dry good groceries for a good part of that. Now, in their home base of Seattle and Los Angeles, if you join Amazon Fresh and pay a fee of about 200 dollars a year, you can order online from a wide variety of grocers and specialty stores for home delivery. As you long as you order by 11 p.m. – for most items – that which you desire will arrive on your doorstep by 6 a.m. the next morning. No wonder Loblaws are looking into e-commerce to broaden their distribution. They might be looking at some very empty big boxes of stores if this catches on in Canada. They’ll have to go some to catch Amazon who’ve been doing e-everything since the 90s and who just spent $750 million on their inventory robotics systems. Now that is a big story but it’s not the one I’m going to focus on.

The trend I’m going to focus on is the opposite of big. It’s small in every way. It’s the revival of the corner grocer.

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Filed under Alberta at Noon, Savour food

CocoLoco – why coconut intake continues to snowball – my @AlbertaatNoon column for December


Today on CBC Radio One’s Alberta at Noon I talked about why the world’s gone loco for coconut and some ideas for using coconut in your holiday baking. The recipes can be found here and the podcast here. I’m on at the 17:44 mark in the show.

Read on for a little more background on coconut’s popularity around the globe.

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#Coconut goodies for #Christmas – recipes for my December @AlbertaatNoon column

A little while ago an invitation to meet the executive pastry chef at Calgary’s Hyatt Regency hotel crossed my desk. I had to delay that meeting until after my annual trip to India and since I knew I would be jet-lagged on my return and that I would have a column for CBC Radio One’s Alberta at Noon due shortly after my return, I thought it would be a great idea to have this profession chef help me with a recipe to share with Albertans this Christmas.

I knew that in the two weeks I would spend in South India I would see coconuts everywhere so I asked if chef might be willing to create a great Christmas inspired coconut dessert.

I specifically mentioned that the recipe should be fairly easy.

Here’s something I learned from this experience; what a classically trained executive pastry chef from Austria whose lived and worked all over the world thinks of as easy, might not be as easy for you and me.

Ah well, it was a delight to meet chef Sabine Gradauer and if you read on you’ll see how I fared in translating her professional chef’s notes on this recipe for Coconut Snowball Cake-pops into something you can make at home. Hopefully all was not lost in translation.

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My @AlbertaatNoon podcast #WorldFoodDay and #ToastAFarmer – How about starting with John Mills of @eaglecreekfarms

Will you join the World Food Day campaign to #ToastAFarmer ? I am happy to. photo - Cole Anderson

Will you join the World Food Day campaign to #ToastAFarmer ? I am happy to.
photo – Cole Anderson

Today on CBC Radio One’s Alberta at Noon with host Donna McElligott I talked about World Food Day’s 2014 theme of family farming – feeding the world and caring for the earth. You’ll find the podcast here. You’ll find my Aunt Muriel’s Farmhouse Carrot Cake recipe using lots of local farm ingredients here.

One of the things you’ll see trending on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram tomorrow is the hashtag #ToastAFarmer along with #WFD2014 and #IYFF. It’s all about showing appreciation for family farmers and especially – for here in Alberta – the next generation. I’m going to start toasting farmers today.

One of my favourite Alberta farmers is a man named John Mills. Read on to find out more about this amazing YOUNG farmer.

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