Thursday, May 21, 2015

Masterchef's Graham Elliot's fresh tastes

Masterchef US judge Chef GRAHAM ELLIOT was in Toronto for a special media event at Nella Cucina on Bathurst St. to promote Walmart's new changes to promote Fresh Tastes and some new changes that will be happening in Walmart stores.   The media were invited to cook up recipes from Chef Elliot's new cookbook "Cook like a Master Chef".
In teams of 4-5 people we cooked up some creamed spinach and grilled 100% Canadian Beef.   Chef Elliot's team also cooked up some grilled Salmon with a mustard vinaigrette and a fresh coleslaw.

Walmart's representative spoke about the changes Walmart are making in their produce sections and their meat departments to better suppliers and in the case of Walmart Canada that means a lot of Canadian product as a response to what consumers were requesting.   Chef Elliot and Walmart Canada want to provide fresh grocery food at an affordable price that more families can choose for their daily meals.  The chicken and pork will be supplied by Maple Leaf and the beef will be from Alberta farmers and the produce from some of the top producers.

Chef Elliot has gone through a major transformation in his life by losing 150 pounds over the course of a year after having gastric sleeve surgery to reduce the size of his stomach.  As a chef he still needed the ability to taste foods all day but a way to get his health in line for himself and mostly for the benefit of his family.  He didn't want to have his weight be an issue for his sons lives so he made the change which included changing his diet to more protein based meals and fresh vegetables and he also ran a marathon a year after his surgery.

With his new cookbook COOK LIKE A MASTERCHEF he wants to inspire people to eat better foods everyday.  He has partnered with Walmart to inspire people in this mission.

It was a pleasure attending the media event where not all the media were comfortable in the kitchen.  I didn't have that problem and enjoyed making his recipes.  I have made the creamed spinach recipe myself a few times so it was simple for me but for people without experience in the kitchen it's an easy recipe to learn and a good way to get kids and adults to eat spinach.

Graham Elliot is considered the nice Chef on Masterchef US in between Gordon Ramsey and previously Joe Bastianich who has now been replaced with Dessert queen Christina Tosi.   The new season aired on Wednesday night and I can say that Christina is a tough judge but I would say critical but precise.

I love watching Masterchef to see all the different recipes the contestants come up with and how they try to push the boundaries of what is expected.

I would suggest watching Masterchef on Wednesday nights at 8pm and you will pick up a few cooking tips and then get a copy of Graham Elliot's cookbook or even one of Chef Gordon Ramsey's many cookbooks and try your hand at a recipe you didn't think you could make.   Impress yourself and the people you dine with with your new found skills and don't forget that Walmart is now trying to provide more fresh foods that you can afford.

*disclaimer: the media event was complimentary but the opinions in this post are my own.

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