Wasabi on Broadway

About two and half weeks ago there was a post in the Manitoba Food Bloggers Group on Facebook asking if anyone was interested in a blogger/dinner event with Wasabi restaurants. I put my name down and last night found myself at the Wasabi location on Broadway.

Like all of these events, the best part of last night is the people you get to dine with. There were several new people, such as Katie, Nisha (who organized the event, thanks), Cody(I think, he was at the opposite end of the table from me), and Robin. It was a chance to renew an occasional acquaintance with Ian McCausland, one of Winnipeg’s best photographers. Then there was Shel, Natalie, and Rebecca. I seem to run into these three at most food events, and their presence guarantees a fun, laughter-filled meal.

Our table at Wasabi Broadway

Our table before anyone had arrived.

 Wasabi Evening:

When you walk in the door of Wasabi, you immediately find yourself by the a little counter with several seats. Behind this counter you will find the chefs preparing the food. If you choose you can order at the counter and watch as your food is being prepared. There was no one seated there when I walked in. The chefs were at work but  took the time to greet me and to call someone to take care of me. Continue reading

Food for the Journey

Food for the Journey: Nutrition on a Budget is a six week nutrition program currently being offered through the parish of St. Stephen and St. Bede. St. Stephen and St. Bede is an Anglican-Lutheran parish in St. James that has been working together long before any of the official links between Anglicans and Lutherans were in place.

The priest there is Reverend Murray Still. Murray and I served together as honourary assistants at Holy Trinity several years ago. I’m always interested in what is happening in Murray’s life as a priest, so when he posted Food for the Journey as a Facebook event, I decided I’d check it out.

Portion Distortion Food for the Journey

Apparently the portions aren’t the only things distorted. The top left shows what we typically eat. The center left, what a portion should be.

The program is being taught by Dominique Chell, a third year nutrition student at the University of Manitoba. I arrived early for the event and had a few minutes to talk with her. The first thing that I discovered is Ms. Chell is a lifelong member of the parish. As we talked a little bit more and I asked here how this related to studies, she told me that while it was a chance to put into practice what she was learning, Food for the Journey wasn’t part of any class assignment, but a chance for her to share her passion for nutrition with her parish family.

In addition to creating this program, Ms. Chell also volunteers with Healthy Start for Mom and Me. This program operates out of Knox United downtown and has several locations in Winnipeg’s core area. Plus, she also volunteers doing clinical work at Deer Lodge hospital.. Continue reading

Saint Mark’s Fall Supper

Late last month I wrote a post listing as many fall suppers in Winnipeg as I could find. Among them are two for parishes I’m connected with. The first of these was last Saturday at the parish of Saint Mark’s. Saint Mark’s is located on St. Mark’s place, just off of St.Mary’s Road south of where St. Anne’s splits off. I’ve been working there for what is approaching three years now.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the parish. The celebration for Saint Mark’s anniversary took place earlier this year including a dinner at the Norwood Hotel.That was an enjoyable dinner, but there’s something about a dinner prepared by the members of the parish that makes it all a little bit tastier.

Saint Mark Hall

The chairs were empty here, but they were all taken by the time the dinner began.

In addition to this being a Fall Dinner, Saint Mark’s adds an auction to go along with the meal. As you can see in the pictures below there was a variety of items that were up for bids. Continue reading

Lunch Bell Bistro

Lunch Bell Window SignThere is a lot of change and transformation in Winnipeg. Often we focus on big splashy things like the SHED in downtown or what’s going on in West Broadway. Yet, generally with less fanfare, a lot of change is happening along Main Street. Much of this changed is designed to work with the existing community, not to simply transform the neighbour by pushing current residents away.

In the last few days I received a couple of emails about a new restaurant on Main Street.This new place is called the Lunch Bell Bistro. The Lunch Bell Bistro is located in the Bell Hotel, which now serves as transitional housing for those trying to get off the street. The bistro itself is working in co-operation with Changes, an organization committed to helping people with cognitive and developmental challenges find their own places within the community.

Lunch Bell Bistro Philosophy StatementUnder the direction of Chef Chris Tascona, the work experience students will work in both front and back end areas of the restaurant over the period of time they are at Lunch Bell. Along with that, they will spend time in other food establishments giving them an opportunity to see how the skill they are learning in one place are transferable to another. One particular area of emphasis is teaching the students the essentials and importance of food safety and hygiene. If you visit the website link at the top of the page, you can acquaint yourself a little more with the details of the process. Continue reading

Raclette for Thanksgiving Dinner

I don’t know how you feel about traditional meals for holidays, but I can take them or leave them. Some, like pumpkin pie, I wish would disappear forever. I enjoy my turkey, but since you can always get a small U-grade one cheap, I often just by one for myself to roast. Thanksgiving is always a little non-traditional, as it’s also a birthday celeberation. My birthday is the twelfth and my sister-in-law’s is the thirteenth. So, we combine all of that into one event. This year, for Thanksgiving with my brother and family we went totally non-traditional as we enjoyed our meal cooked over a Raclette grill.

Raclette is both a a type of cheese and a type of dish. Traditionally the cheese for dish is melted over an open fire, but in contemporary times table top Raclette grills have been created.

Raclette Grill

This is the grill before all the food has been added.

raclette coupelle

This is called the coupelle and is used for melting the cheese, preferably Raclette, over the grill.

the cheese

The cheese.

Raclette Components:

In addition to the cheese there are several other common components used in serving Raclette. Small potatoes, gherkins and sweet onions are traditional. As well, various dried meats are served. Our dinner featured pepperoni and prosciutto. We also added shrimp. Along with the potatoes we had baby corn and asparagus for grilling. Continue reading

Little Maria’s, Edmonton Street

It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve posted. My schedule has been very full and I haven’t found many new places. Yesterday, though I paid another visit to Little Maria’s Porchetta & Meatballs on Edmonton Street.

If you’ve read the About Page, you know one of the important things for this blog is the matter of eating together. One of the side benefits of that practice is learning about new restaurants. This is really helpful in Winnipeg, where the population to restaurant ratio is about six to one, or so it seems. I first heard of Little Maria’s through my friend Terry who’s part of the Saturday night service that I attend at St. Margaret’s (check out their new website. It was designed by Don Betts who also designed the website for us at St. Philip’s).Little Maria's Sign

I digress. It took me a while to find Little Maria’s after I first heard about it. It’s tucked away just off of Broadway on the street level floor of a highrise. When I first walked it, I felt a little nostalgic. The tables and chairs made me think of Eat Bistro in Aqua Books. I spent many an hour in Eat and walking into Little Maria’s made me miss it all over again. Continue reading