Friday, June 26, 2015

Culinary Challenge 2015 Fundraising Launch

I got an invitation to go to the launch for the (CBCF) Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation's annual Culinary Showdown a Cook for the Cure event and then my friend sent me an email saying he wanted to go.  I have been to many of their events in the past and they are always fun but now that I don't have a car going to Cirillo's Academy is very out of the way to get to by TTC so I had to think about it.  The friend that asked me if I would go has never gone to these events so I thought it would be great for him to go so I agreed to take the TTC and meet him there along with another mutual friend of ours.  A couple of my food blogger friends also told me they were going so I was happy about that and one of them offered to give me a ride.  Even better I could skip the hour plus TTC ride.

The Culinary Showdown will be held on Saturday November 4th, 2015 at the Westin Harbourcastle Hotel.

On the day of the event I sent my original friend a text and then he told me he wasn't going.  Thanks for letting me know.  Now if I was only going with him I probably wouldn't have bothered to go because I know how the events are and wasn't planning on signing up for this year.   But because my other friends were going and I was getting a ride I ended up going.   CBCF does a series of cocktail nights at different locations just before the Culinary Showdown to get people to sign up to start fundraising and get them inspired and excited.  The night starts out with appetizers and drinks.

Chef's like Lynn Crawford might host one at her restaurant and Cirillo's Academy is always a supporter so other chefs will host their cocktail nights there.  It was Chef Corbin Tomaczeski who was the host last night.  Chef Corbin is very motivated to participate in fundraising for Breast Cancer research as he has a personal connection to this disease with 2 close friends.   He also had a 6 degrees of separation moment with a women at the event who was connected by where they live and a couple of other unusual circumstances.  This connection almost moved Chef Corbin to tears.  The woman had just lost her mother to cancer in April and has become the top fundraiser so far earning her a spot at the Culinary Showdown, she has raised over $8000 so far.
It is always emotional and fun event because there is always someone there who has gone through cancer and the Chefs always have a personal story to tell as to why they became involved.

Everyone knows someone that has been touched by Breast Cancer or other cancers.  I have lost many family members to cancer and have had a few friends go through cancer treatments.

After all of the sad stories and inspirational stories comes the fun part at these events.  This time there was a cooking box challenge with 5 teams.  I was on one team with my friend Mary (Mary's Happy Belly) and my friend Jenny (Ice Cream and Knishes) was on another team.
Our team was called team ambitious although it changed a couple of times and we were given a box with limited ingredients that we had to turn into a Chef worthy dish.
We had peas, green beans, pork tenderloin, polenta and rosemary.  We only had 15 minutes to create our dish.  Every team had a different box of ingredients resulting in a varied assortment of dishes to judge.  Our dish looked really nice but our polenta didn't have enough time to cook and it was too think.

My friend Jenny's team 1 had meatballs and wontons and they called their dish wonton nipples or something crazy like that.  It cracked Chef Corbin up when Jenny described the dish.

Unfortunately both of our teams didn't win but they chose 2 out of the 5 teams and Chef Corbin offered to pay for the registration of the teams.

The incentive to sign up that night was if you won Chef Corbin paid the fee but if you paid for yourself it was half price at $40 and they also gave you 2 tickets to the Taste of Toronto festival which are worth $50.  Normally the registration is $75 so I decided to sign up because just getting the Taste of Toronto tickets made it worth it even before trying to raise any money.

I participated in fundraising 2 years ago and only was able to raise $200 and some of that came by selling cookies.  I raised enough to get an apron but not enough to participate in the Culinary Showdown.  So this time I need YOUR HELP to raise at least $1000 to get me to the Showdown and if I raise $2500 I get to participate in cooking with the Celebrity Chefs.
There is also a cooking academy in the morning for the Top 50 fundraisers at the Showdown.

If you would like to participate in the Showdown or would like to donate to me or someone else that is participating in fundraising check out details on their website:  http://culinaryshowdown.ca/

My goal is to reach $2500 this year so that I can participate and join some great Celebrity chefs and cook up a storm.  If you would like to help get me in the game here is the direct link to my Page to Donate to help me reach my goal.

CLICK HERE to DONATE to my Personal PAGE:



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