TORONTO — Taste Canada celebrated cookbook authors and food bloggers at the Taste Canada Awards Gala at the Fairmont Royal York in Toronto on October 29. Co-hosted by TV personality Shahir Massoud and food expert Claire Tansey, the event unveiled the 26 gold and silver award winners of the 2018 Taste Canada Awards.
“Canadian cookbooks and food blogs are so much more than recipes, they honour our collective history, our culture, our diversity and our unique Canadian perspective on food,” said Donna Dooher, chair, board of directors, Taste Canada. “For the past 21 years, Taste Canada has championed Canadian culinary writers and the Canadian cookbook-publishing industry and we’re honoured to play a central role in the celebration of Canada’s food culture.”
The awards ceremony was opened with an address from the Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario. “Tonight we celebrate two things that bind us together as Canadians: our food and our stories…What we cook and eat can express so much, from our cultures, our traditions and innovations, to our common ground and our very personal tastes, our roots and the fruit that they have born,” she said, noting that food writers also have the ability to make take a deeper look at food-related challenges.
Taste Canada’s 2018 Gold winners include:
English — Vij, Vikram Vij
French — Le Festin de Mathilde, Simon-Philippe Turcot and Sophie Gagnon-Bergeron
English — Farm to Chef, Lynn Crawford
French — Histoires de bouffe, Stéphane Gadbois
English — Feast: Recipes and Stories from a Canadian Road Trip, Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller
French — Le secret des Vietnamiennes, Kim Thúy
English — All the Sweet Things: Baked Goods and Stories from the Kitchen of Sweetsugarbean, Renée Kohlman
French — Le canard goulu: le découvrir et le cuisine, Sébastien Lesage et collectif
Health and Special Diet Cookbooks
English — Yum & Yummer: Ridiculously Tasty Recipes That’ll Blow Your Mind, But Not Your Diet!, Greta Podleski
French — Protéines: Stratégies alimentaires et recettes pour bien les consommer tout au long de la journée, Julie DesGroseilliers
General Food Blogs
English — Rhubarb & Cod, Susan Keefe
French — Emilie murmure, Emilie Gaillet
Health & Special Diet Blogs (English Only)
Oh She Glows, Angela Liddon
The 2018 Hall of Fame awards were also presented by the Culinary Historians of Canada to Graham Kerr, host of the popular 1970’s cooking show The Galloping Gourmet; and Constance Hart (posthumously), author of Household Recipes, which was published in 1865 “by a Montreal lady.” Hart is heralded as the first Jewish person in Canada to write a cookbook.
During the awards ceremony, the winners of Taste Canada’s 2018 Cooks the Books competition, which took place at Mildred’s Temple Kitchen in Toronto on October 28, were also revealed. The annual student-chef battle invites Canadian culinary students from across the nation to compete for the title of Canada’s Best New Student Chefs.
In past years, competitors were challenged to recreate dishes by culinary authors. However, for this year’s competition, the students were tasked with writing and developing their own original recipes with a modern contemporary theme, using Canadian ingredients.
Jessi Coulter and Kaitlin McCarthy from Assiniboine Community College (Brandon, Man.) won the Gold Medal for their recipe for cast-Iron-Seared Hudson River arctic char, with smoked maple-birch glaze, on heritage grain. The Silver Medal was awarded to Celina do Souto and Sydney Lutz from Conestoga College (Kitchener, Ont.) for their braised beef cheeks with roasted squash and maple-milk foam.
The complete list of 2018 Taste Canada winners is available at tastecanada.org.