Maple Ridge Secondary’s culinary arts instructor, Trevor Randle, is passionate about three things: cooking, teaching, and local food.
His students at the high school have been able to witness that passion over the past 16 years.
“I get to showcase what I love to do every day, and having all these open minds receiving it, and returning that excitement, is super satisfying,” he said.
Now anyone with an internet connection, a kitchen, and the will to make a tasty meal, can get excited too.
Chef Randle will be hosting a free online cooking class for Canada’s Agriculture Day on Tuesday, Feb. 23.
The event is being hosted by BC Agriculture in the Classroom Foundation, who Randle has been teaming up with for the last 12 years.
Together they have created programs for teaching kitchens across the province, which put them in touch with local farmers, who wanted to showcase what they grow.
He has put on cooking demonstrations at Vancouver’s PNE as well as Surrey’s Fusion Festival, and recently took his teaching talents into the virtual space.
“I’ve started doing some online Zoom cooking lessons,” Randle said. “I’ve done a couple with the 4H kids, and other groups, and they went really well.”
This Tuesday’s class will be the largest he has done so far, so Randle has pulled out all the stops to make sure it will be great.
“We’re going to feature our local chicken and some of our local squash with a B.C.-inspired Thai curry chicken,” he said. “And for dessert, we’re going to highlight our blueberries, eggs and our milk with some baked lemon puddings with a blueberry compote.”
All the cooking will be done in real time, so everyone can follow along.
“I’m going to start chopping the onion right along with everybody, and from start to finish it’s going to take about an hour, to an hour and a half, and then everybody will hopefully have a great time, and then enjoy a great dinner at the end.”
While Randle joked he could easily chat about food for six hours, he will be joined by B.C. farmers, Lovella Schellenberg and Mickey Aylard, who will answer some questions about sourcing local food.
“We’ll be doing some great cooking, with delicious food, and having some fun conversation,” he said.
The lesson will be accessible for everyone from beginners to experts, Randle added.
“I’m making the meal from my home kitchen,” he said. “It designed to be simple with common ingredients, using common equipment, to send a message that cooking local is simple.
“It doesn’t have to be complicated.”
Chef Randle’s lesson will be held from 5:30-7 p.m. on Feb. 23.
Participants can register here. Everyone who takes part will be entered into a draw for a chance to win one of three prize packages valued at more than $200 each.
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