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Giveaway: Toronto Taste in Support of Second Harvest

Toronto Taste 2014 GiveawayNo one in Toronto eats at restaurants anymore. That’s not really true, but it can seem that way based on the unremitting social media chatter about food events from taco festivals to top-flight fundraisers-for-a-cause. (See yesterday’s post about the Earth Day gala). Well before we had seen our first banh mi off Spadina or lined up for a food truck that was selling anything other than poutine and dirty water hot dogs, Toronto Taste was there. This will be its 24th year of gathering some of Toronto’s top chefs and discerning gourmands to raise much-needed funds for Second Harvest.

The well-respected charity uses money raised from the event to support their food rescue programmes. This system picks up surplus food from supermarkets, restaurants, and food manufacturers and feeds it into a network of 200 community agencies. From this operation, the equivalent of 20,000 meals are distributed every day to those in need. (more…)

FoodieMeet Bakeoff

Top Secret Ingredient #1

Top Secret Ingredient #1

FoodieMeet, I gather, is a series of events for those in Toronto who tend to think with their stomachs.  Events so far have included a wine tour of Prince Edward County and a tasting of the so-called miracle fruit.  This Sunday, the 13th at 6:30 they will be holding their holiday party and charity bake off and I have joined the baking fray.  There are going to be something like twenty-nine bakers, three celebrity and two great dj’s.  But the really important thing to note is that proceeds from tickets–$25 to get in plus four tasting tickets, additional tasting tickets are $2 each–go to benefit The Stop Community Food Centre.  The Stop is ably described on the FoodieMeet website thusly:

The Stop started off as one of Canada’s first food banks but has since grown to offer an fantastic lineup of programs: drop-in meals, community gardens, pre and post-natal nutrition support, farmers markets, sustainable food education, civic engagement and many other valuable initiatives.

At first I was a bit thrown by the theme: Escape from Toronto.  I have never had the odious pleasure of viewing either Escape from New York or the even more horrible (I hear) Escape from L.A.  The de facto suggested take on the theme was that bakers should embrace Toronto’s multi-ethnic patchwork of global cuisine.  I love many of the ethnic flavours that make Toronto culinarily unique but baking with them isn’t really my style.  Thankfully, I believe I have developed a recipe that fits the theme, suits my cooking, and hopefully will wow the judges. (more…)