Canapes around the world

Back in November 2018, Whistler Multicultural Network was given an opportunity to showcase multicultural food at the annual Community Foundation of Whistler (CFOW) reception. Our chef Petr from the Czech Republic chose 6 types of canapes from 3 different countries: Japan, Spain and the Czech Republic.

The prep team and serving teams, made of our Whistler Multicultural Network members, worked very hard to make this catering opportunity a huge success. Everyone loved the colorful, tasty and diverse food! One event participant and community member was so impressed that he decided to donate to CFOW just because of the food we offered. Isn’t it amazing?!

Below you will find a recipes from the Spain.

Recipe for the Crostini with sun dried tomatoes jam (Spain)

Ingredients:

0,45 kg sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained and chopped, oil reserved, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 onion (thinly sliced), 2 cloves of garlic (minced), 3 tablespoons of sugar, 1 cup of red wine vinegar, 2 cups of water, 2 teaspoons of chopped fresh thyme leaves, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper

Method:

Place a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the chopped sun-dried tomatoes, 1/3 of tablespoon of the reserved sun-dried tomato oil, olive oil, onion, and garlic. Stir and cook until the onions are soft and beginning to brown at the edges, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the sugar, vinegar, water, chicken broth, thyme, salt, and pepper. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes. Remove the cover and continue simmering until most of the liquid is reduced and the mixture is the consistency of jam, about 5 to 10 more minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside

Want to know what we’re planning for the 2019 Festival?

Want to join the food team? Know someone who’d like to perform? Have an idea for an activity? or would you like to help us plan the festival? Last Monday a group came together to start the process and here’s what they talked about…

Bringing cultures together

This year we want to create more opportunities for people to make connections and really get to know each other’s cultures. So all our performances will be linked to specific cultures/traditions and greater information about the cultural background to the performance will be shared with the audience. We are hoping to run at least one series of workshops before the festival for people from the community to learn either a song or a dance they can share more widely on the day. And we’ll be talking to lots of people at the festival in preparation for a Vital Cafe on June 18 where we will invite community members to explore how to help newcomers and immigrants participate in our community: Whistler.

Food

The meeting discussed whether we should invite in food vendors this year, or leave it with only the WMN providing food as we did last year. We agreed that one or two vendors could be invited if they are looking to grow or start their business and need awareness.

The good news is that the prep kitchen we used last year is available and booked. We will do the food on the Plaza again and set up a place for people to sit and eat like last year. Next steps are to get people together to look at ideas for food items, so we can start planning and costing that early. Barbora will be looking for people with ideas on what we might do this year. If you’d like to get involved in the food, please contact her.

Performances

The focus this year will be on cultural and traditional performances. Each performance will be allocated 15 minutes and the schedule will be tightly managed to make sure no one is kept waiting. Rob Olive, our event manager, will be contacting previous performers to invite them to sign up again, but we’d love to see some new people, cultures and performances.

Anyone interested in participating should contact the Welcome Centre team and they will provide information and pass potential performers on to Rob. We’ll be asking performers to provide some information about the cultural background of their performance that can be used to introduce them. This year especially we’d like to make sure that the audience has as many opportunities to participate as possible so they really experience the different cultures we showcase.

Activities

Unfortunately, we ran out of time and we’ll be discussing these at our next meeting – so bring along your ideas then!

Volunteer thank you

This year we’re planning to say thank you to our volunteers in a big way… with a barbecue on Sunday 16 June from 1 to 4pm. Watch this space for location, and to see what volunteer opportunities there are.

Join us at our next meeting….

…from 5.30pm to 7pm on Monday February 25 – at the Welcome Centre at the library. Can’t make it but want to keep in touch? Drop us an email and we’ll add you to our circulation list for updates.

Food Safe – level 1

Whistler Welcome Centre is organizing a special Food Safe course – level 1 for immigrants (ESL speakers) about safe food handling and sanitation.

The course is delivered by Caroline Bagnall, certified Food safe instructor, at a discounted rate.

Who is it for:

  • People working in a food services industry
  • People who like to get basic knowledge on safe food
    handling when shopping, cooking/baking

When: Saturday March 23, 2019: 9:30am -5:30pm

Where: Welcome Centre @ Whistler Public Library

Cost: $80pp. 8 participants minimum

Registration and payment information:

  • Email Barbora at barbora.vaneckova@sscs.ca
  • Your registration in the course will be confirmed once the payment (either cash or cheque) is received

Includes: Free study group on Friday March 22, 2019: 10am-12pm, Foodsafe book, certification card valid for 5 years

The course is part of the Multicultural Community Kitchen Program and partially funded by RMOW.

Want to learn how to be safe in the mountains?

Living in Whistler means you probably like or would like to start skiing or snowboarding in the mountains. They are beautiful, but they can be very dangerous.

This week at our Multicultural Meet Up, we have a qualified mountain guide coming to give a talk on safety in the mountains. This talk is for anyone, complete beginners to experienced skiers or snowboarders. They will talk about skiing treed runs and deep snow, out of bounds and backcountry skiing, basic avalanche awareness and mountain code and rules.

If you like to go up the mountain or are thinking about starting to go up the mountain, you should come to this talk. It will be filled with great information, and the guide will be happy to answer any questions you may have. So please come this Friday 25th January, 10.30am at the Welcome Centre.

Learn about Sugars, good and bad!

Come to our Multicultural Meet Up, this Friday 18th January. Our expert nutritionist will be there to teach us about different types of sugar. The bad sugars and the good sugars and how they affect our bodies. As always she is happy to answer any questions

Slovak and Czech Christmas recipes

Christmas is just around the corner and if you are still thinking what to cook or bake, we would like to share two traditional Christmas recipes with you. In Slovakia, Kapustnica (Sauerkraut soup) is served as a first course on Christmas Eve. In both countries, Slovak and Czech Republic, Xmas are without Linzer (Linecke) cookies. 

Our chefs both Barbora and Barbora 🙂 taught us how to prepare their traditional meals/cookies at our cooking class, which is a part of the Multicultural Community Kitchen Program. https://welcomewhistler.com/programs-services/programs/multicultural-community-kitchen/

Kapustnica‘s main ingredients are sauerkraut, pork, sausages and mushrooms. The soup is prepared slightly differently in each country’s region. Some people add plums, apples or ham. On Christmas Eve, soup is then followed by schnitzel or fish with potato salad and then by cookies. 

Ingredients: (serves 4-6ppl)

• 500 g (3.5 cups) sauerkraut

• 500 g (2.25 cups) diced pork

• handful of dried mushrooms

• 1 sausage (Hungarian sausage is a good choice)

• 2 onions

• 2 cloves garlic

• 1 cup sour Cream

• 2 bay leaves

• pinch of nutmeg, caraway, black pepper, paprika, salt

Method:

1. Rinse sauerkraut under cold water, drain and put
into a large pot with 2.5litres water

2. Turn 2 cloves of garlic into a paste and add to sauerkraut

3. Add black pepper, caraway seeds, nutmeg, dried mushrooms
(previously soaked in water), bay leaves and sliced onions

4. Cut pork into smaller pieces and add them to the
pot

5. Add paprika and salt, cover the pot and simmer
for approximately 60 minutes. Slice sausage and add to the soup 15 minutes before
finishing. The longer you cook the soup, the better it tastes. I usually let it
cook for 90 minutes to achieve a great taste.

6. Typically, the soup is served with sour cream,but it is up to you, how you like it. It makes the soup more creamy and thicker.

Czech Barbora said about the Linzer cookies: ” These cookies are super popular around the Christmas tree with the family, and everyone has different opinion about how to make them right – different jam, different shapes, everyone thinks their cookies are the best…We make Linzer cookies every Christmas and my mum even makes special jam in summer to be ready for Christmas time.” ( quoted from Whistler’s Multicultural Cookbook 2017). https://welcomewhistler.com/our-cookbook/

Ingredients for Linzer cookies :(makes about 4 dozen small cookies)

2 cups (250 g) all purpose flour

1cup (125 g) icing sugar

1lemon for zest

3 egg yolks

1 stick and 6 tbsp (200 g) butter –cubed & at room temperature

Jam/jelly of your choice

Method:

1.Sift the flour and sugar onto a clean surface (use the biggest one you have). Make a well in the middle, add in the egg yolks, lemon zest and butter cubes. Knead the dough until soft, smooth and elastic. It takes around 10-15 minutes.

2.Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours (I leave in the fridge overnight).

3. Cut dough into 4 pieces. Roll out each piece on a lightly floured surface to 1/8-inchthickness. Cut dough with desired cookie cutter shape. Make a large hole in thecenter of half of your cookie shapes. Place 1inchapart on a cookie sheet (I use baking paper instead of greasing the cookiesheets).

4. Bake at 355 °F for 7 to 10 minutes until edges are light golden brown.

5.When cool, spread each solid cookie with strawberry jam, put the cookie  with the hole in the middle on top, and sprinkle with sugar. 

Pierogi (Polish recipe)

Patryk and Ela from Poland were our chefs at the October Multicultural community kitchen. We’ve learned it takes many times to make a dough for pierogi to be perfect. Although Ela has made the dough at least 50 times before, she is still not a pro 🙂 Patryk used to watch his grandma doing it, but was never allowed to touch it. Pierogi are filled dumplings with a savoury of sweet filling, cooked in a boiling water.

Pierogi recipe (for 8 people)

 

  • 1kg of ricotta
  • 1kg of potatoes (they have to be peeled and precooked in salted water and have time to cool down)
  • 2 large or 4small onions
  • 900g of flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 80g of butter
  • salt and pepper

Method

Precook peeled potatoes in salted water a while before starting the pierogi so that they have time to cool off to room temperature.

Dough

Sieve flour into a bowl, add a pinch of salt. Combine 500ml of boiled water with 80g of butter. Gradually combine flour and water whilst mixing everything. Add eggs and combine. Knead the dough for about 10mins and set aside.

Filling

Mix the ricotta with potatoes and mash everything together. Dice onion and cook until translucent, add half to the filling. Season with salt and pepper. Divide the dough into 10 portions. Roll each portion out to about 2-3mm thickness. Cut into 5x5cm pieces (or cut out circles with a large glass). Then add the filling on top of the cut-outs, fold in half and glue together.

In a large pot boil salted water with a splash of oil or butter, when the water boils place around 15 pierogi and cook until all the pieces start floating to the top. After they float let them cook for another 2 mins and take them out into a large bowl. Place the next batch in the pot. Repeat until all pierogi are cooked . Add remaining onion to the bowl of pierogi, mix and serve.

Soy and sesame kale chips

Kale you either love or hate! Would you like to know how to eat the whole bunch of kale so all your family will enjoy it and it will be gone before you know it?

Izumi, originally from Japan, has taught us how to prepare soy and sesame kale chips at our Healthy snacks workshop. Yum! It’s a very easy and healthy substitute for regular chips. She prepares it for her daughters quite often and if there are any leftovers, Izumi leaves the chips and stores for later on as an ingredient to be added to rice, soups and other meals.

Recipe for 4 people:

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of kale
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 250 F.
  2. Rinse kale and thoroughly blow dry with a kitchen towel. Tear leaves from ribs and discard the ribs. Tear leaves into 4-inch pieces.
  3. Pour sesame oil and soy sauce into a large bowl, add kale, and toss to coat evenly. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
  4. Arrange leaves in a single layer on 2 rimmed baking sheets. Bake until leaves are crisp but not browned for about 20-25 min.
  5. Enjoy!

Pancakes around the world

This year’s Festival food theme was “Pancakes around the world”. People were watching our chefs preparing the pancakes in front of them. There are so many types of pancakes such as Polish, Chinese, French, Swedish, Thai, Indian etc. Our community got to try 3 kinds of pancakes from 3 countries nowhere else to be bought in Whistler. We chose Czech, Korean and Russian as we have people from these countries living in Whistler too.

Czech “Bramboraky “ or fried potato-garlic- marjoram pancakes are very popular either in Czech Republic or Slovakia (knows as “Zemiakove placky”). They’re served either at lunch time, dinner or during the day as a snack. Potato is one of the basic staples in Czech cuisine, commonly used in many dishes.

Korean Kimchi pancakes or “Kimchi Jeon” are savoury pancakes served with a lot’s of kimchi in it. Because kimchi is made of fermented veggies with its main ingredient cabbage, it’s also very healthy and therefore commonly eaten any time of the day. You can find them anywhere in Asia with slight variations.

Our sweet version of pancakes was Russian “Blinis” and they got sold out almost immediately. Traditionally they’re prepared in a savoury way, filled with cottage cheese, sour cream, quark, butter, caviar (whitefish, salmon or sturgeon caviar) and other garnishes. They can be rolled as French crepes or served as a triangle.

See below Bramboraky recipe and pictures. Our chef Petr from the Czech Republic has been in the cooking industry for a long time and he’s so good that he even introduced this recipe to one of the Whistler’s restaurants he used to work at and they included it on the menu! We’re lucky to have him helping us at the Festival. It took a long time to peel and shred 15 kg of potatoes but it was worth it!

Bramboraky

Ingredients for 10 pancakes:

  • 1kg potatoes
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp of salt, 1 tsp of pepper
  • 1 tsp marjoram
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • canola oil for frying

Method:

  1. Peel and coarsely grate the potatoes, squeezing out as much liquid as you can. Transfer the shredded potatoes to a mixing bowl. Stir in the crushed garlic, salt, and marjoram.
  2. Add the eggs to the potatoes and stir well to combine. Gradually mix in the flour to form a thick but still pourable batter.
  3. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat; the oil should be about 1/4-inch deep. Spoon about 1/4 cup of batter into the hot oil, flattening it slightly. Fry the pancake until golden brown, about 3 minutes on each side. Drain on paper towels. Taste the first pancake and adjust the seasoning if necessary; repeat with remaining batter.

Have some fun and volunteer…

We’re recruiting volunteers to help with the 2018 Whistler Multicultural Festival. The actual event is 4 to 8pm on Friday June 8, but some volunteers are needed to help with set up and take down before and after. Here are details of volunteer positions we need for help with….

Most shifts are approximately 3 hours, but if you can’t manage an entire shift let us know what hours you can help. Volunteers will receive snacks and a button, as well as join the fun.

Contact Us if you’d like to help or want more information: info@welcomewhistler.com  or tel: 604.698.5960

Festival Ambassadors: One hour between 4 and 8pm to interact with the public near the Festival location to invite them in. Handout promotional pieces. If you have national dress to wear, that’s even better.

Set up/take down: 10 – 4 pm and/or 8 – 9:30 pm. Set up/take down tents, tables, recycling area, displays, activities. Decorate the location.

Customer relations: 3:30 – 6 pm and/or 6 – 8 pm to greet visitors, give event information, manage a world map activity.

General helpers: 3:30 pm – 6:00 pm and/or 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm to help with any task that needs an extra hand. Also, to help keep the site clean and tidy, and garbage in the right place.

Activities helpers: 3:30 – 6 pm and/or 5:30 – 8 pm to help run multicultural crafts and activities. No skills or knowledge needed.

Food team: Help prep food on June 7 from 3 – 7pm and/or cook and serve food for 2 – 3 hours between 3:30 – 8pm at the Festival.

Volunteer managers: 3:30 – 8pm to sign volunteers in and assign tasks during the Festival