Tuesday, June 15, 2010

From the Ocean, to your plate; Cookbook authors gather at CATCH Seafood Festival to showcase their recipes, featuring Nova Scotia's jewels of the sea

One of Nova Scotia’s signature gifts is its seafood. Whether it’s lobster fresh off the boat, succulent scallops from the Halifax Farmer’s Market or tender smoked salmon out of one of the province’s premiere smoke houses, Nova Scotia has seafood in abundance.

The CATCH Seafood Festival, taking place at the Cunard Centre in Halifax, June 19-20, will showcase seafood in a variety of settings; from culinary demos to touch tanks; an oyster shucking contest, and the Great CATCH Culinary Competition, there is something to please everyone. This year’s festival will feature a new event to tempt your taste buds. Appealing to a variety of audiences; little chefs in the making to seasoned pros, culinary enthusiasts to novice eaters, CATCH has invited cookbook authors from Nova Scotia, and welcomes guests from away as they feature their literary talents in a cookbook signing.

When it comes to seafood, what better way to showcase this fine fare than in a cookbook? On June 19th and 20th, the CATCH Seafood Festival has invited these talented individuals to join in the fun, showcasing and signing their cookbooks in a booksigning at the Nova Scotia Tourism booth from 12:00-3:00 PM.

On Saturday afternoon, join former Saltscapes founding food editor and Chronicle Herald food writer, Marie Nightingale, as she signs her cookbook; Out of Old Nova Scotian Kitchens, Nova Scotia’s most popular cookbook ever produced. In its 40th year of publication, this literary work is still one of Nimbus Publishing’s best sellers, and its 40th year anniversary edition will be released this October, 2010. Marie’s collection of traditional Nova Scotian recipes and corresponding notes about the people who cooked them, provides recipes for the body and soul.

Also on Saturday, join West Pubnico’s Donald Doucette as he signs his book, Surette's Island, West Pubnico and Georges Bank ... My Memoirs, which describes life at Surette's Island, a small French Acadian community in Yarmouth County, Nova Scotia.

Donald’s book is a reflection about life on a small island community in the 40's and 50’s, and details the start of the offshore scallop fishery in Nova Scotia. It also descries describes the different vessels involved in the scallop fishery and their history from the boatshop to their final resting place.

An experienced seaman, Donald has worked as a crewmember, Mate and Captain on offshore scallop draggers for 19 years, as well as holding the Captain’s position of a groundfish dragger. Donald’s other experiences on the sea lends to his credit, as he has also worked with Environment Canada Fisheries and spent 20 years as a Life Insurance Underwriter. When not on the water, Donald has held such positions as Executive Dir. of Offshore Scallop Fishermen's Assoc., and as a Board member of N. S. Fisheries & Aquaculture Loan Board.

On Sunday afternoon, CATCH welcomes local chef and author, Michael Howell, owner of Tempest Restaurant in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, as he signs his cookbook, Atlantic Seafood. After 20 years of cooking and travelling around the world, Michael came back home to settle in Nova Scotia. An honours graduate of the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago, Michael has honed his skill in kitchens across the globe, working in such places as New York, Michigan and Toronto, as well as the exotic Bahamas.

While Atlantic Seafood has been called, “A must-have for any seafood enthusiast”, Michael’s recipes are organized in an effort to simplify cooking, and enables readers to find recipes based on ingredients that are available in their area. With recipes featuring a plethora of seafood types, this book also addresses the growing concern of using sustainable seafood and assists readers in making responsible choices when purchasing Atlantic fish and shellfish.

Nova Scotia’s CATCH Seafood Festival will also welcome cookbook author Judy Eberspeacher to the province on Sunday afternoon as she showcases Totally Scallops, the first and only single-subject cookbook featuring scallops.

Over the past 26 years, Judy has collected, created, tasted and organized almost 90 scallop recipes for this book. Featuring recipes from every continent, Judy’s Totally Scallops presents dishes from some of the finest chefs and establishments worldwide, and is filled with little-known facts about scallops. An accomplished travel and nature photographer, Judy lives in Canada but spends much of her time travelling with her husband Alex, a wine and travel writer, in her search for the perfect dish.

As the former restaurant critic for Halifax’s famed newsweekly, the Coast, Liz Feltham will bring her newly released and much anticipated South Shore Tastes to the table. Specializing in culinary writing, Liz is a certified journeyperson chef and has worked in kitchens from Whitehorse to St. John's. Liz is also a contributor to a number of magazines, and South Shore Tastes adds to her collection of authored cookbooks which include Fabulous Fishcakes and Summer Drinks.

In South Shore Tastes, Liz has collected recipes from twenty-four restaurants spanning the South Shore region. From the tourist favorite Sou’wester in Peggy’s Cove to Lane’s Privateer Inn in Liverpool to Chez Bruno’s Bistro in Yarmouth, her cookbook showcases a diverse array of dishes that feature local ingredients and tastes. Liz sweetens the pot by including a map and restaurant guide to help readers find their favourite eatery.

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