A recipe for Indulgence

Slow Food Edmonton’s Indulgence a Canadian epic of food and wine is about the chefs who want to work with farmers and the farmers who want to supply them. You’d think that would be easy, right?

Not so fast. Take the status quo: restaurants require a steady supply, delivered to their loading dock on a regular basis. Farmers have seasonal supply and don’t deliver. There’s more: our cool wet spring has delayed planting of field vegetables and grains; most of our pulses are shipped overseas to eager markets and we have a serious labour shortage.

Indulgence is a celebration of those who have met in the middle, redefining the status quo to develop working relationships with each other. They have chosen to approach the challenges of our northern market economy as an opportunity, not a problem. We salute you, with delicious Canadian estate wine!

Amber Lane Elk meatball stuffed with pecorino, served with soya-red wine reduction and chickpea purée
Wilson and Judy Wu, Wild Tangerine

Our landscape and climate is ideal for superb protein on the hoof, not just beef, but elk, bison, and wild boar. It takes an intuitive chef like Judy Wu to show us just how accessible these other meats can be.

“This dish also goes extremely well with a lightly oaked, well-structured red wine such as Note Bene,” says Wilson.


½ c breadcrumbs

2 eggs

2 t salt

1 t sugar

¼ t ground pepper

¼ t cayenne pepper

2 lb (1kg) ground elk meat

1 piece pecorino cheese, approx 3×4, cut into ¼” cubes

¼ c flour

canola oil for frying

½ c water

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

4 cloves shallot, finely chopped

1 c red wine

1 c veal/beef stock

3 T soy sauce

3 T dark soy sauce

In a large mixing bowl, soak breadcrumbs in ½ c water for 5 minutes. Add eggs, salt, sugar, pepper, cayenne pepper and ground elk meat. Mix all the ingredients until it takes on a doughy texture. Use a small ice cream scoop or tablespoon to portion the meatball then stuff with a cube of pecorino cheese. Handroll meatballs to form even, round ball shapes. Roll each meatball in flour, coating lightly.

Heat up a large deep frying pan and fill with oil so it is about ½” deep. Once the oil reaches 400ºF, place meatballs in the oil and keep turning until they turn crispy. Set aside meatballs on a paper towel to absorb extra oil.
Place 2 T oil into the frying pan. Add garlic, shallot and sauté until soft. Add red wine, stock and soy sauces. Place meatballs back in the pan and reduce the sauce to a gravy-like texture. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Chickpea Puree

2 c chickpeas

2 c whipping cream

sea salt and freshly-cracked black pepper, to taste

Soak chickpeas in cold water overnight. Place in pan, cover in water and cook until soft. Drain and place chickpeas in a medium sized pot. Add whipping cream ¼ c at a time and stir until it turns into a creamy-textured puree. Season to taste.

To serve:
Place the chickpea purée on a plate and place meatballs on top — this keeps the meatballs from rolling around on the plate. Serve with a green salad and piece of toasted multi-grain bread. Serves 6-8.

Irving’s Pork Scrapple
Andrew Cowan, Hundred bar + kitchen

1 kg pork shoulder or pork jowls

1 T mustard seeds

1 T coriander seeds

1 sprig thyme and rosemary, leaves only, finely chopped

1 T whole cardamom

1 carrot, roughly chopped

3 ribs celery, rough chopped

1 large white or yellow onion, roughly chopped

1 c yellow cornmeal

sea salt and black pepper, to taste

Place pork shoulder with all the ingredients except cornmeal into a pot with cover, or a slow cooker. Slowly braise until pork is fork tender, about 3 hours, internal temperature should be 170ºF. Shred the meat and set aside.

Strain the stock and reduce by half. Combine cornmeal and meat and cook until cornmeal is thick, about 20 minutes. The cornmeal should be smooth, not grainy. Cool enough to handle the cornmeal mixture. Wrap in plastic wrap to form a tube and refrigerate overnight. Cut into coins and fry until golden.

Japanese-style barbecued Spring Creek Ranch beef short rib in Sunomono broth with Alberta honey glaze
Shane Chartrand, L2 Fantasyland Hotel


Short rib

4 lbs Spring Creek Ranch boneless short rib

½ c miso paste*

1 clove garlic, crushed

fresh cracked pepper to taste

4 c black tea, chilled

4 c gluten-free soy sauce

1 c mirin

Trim top fat from short rib. Season with fresh pepper (miso is salty). Pan sear meat until the top is crusty and golden. Rub the garlic and miso paste into the short rib on all the sides. Refrigerate overnight (max 12 hours) checking to make sure the miso is penetrating the meat.

Mix tea, soy sauce and mirin together and pour over meat. Before putting in oven, place a cast iron skillet on top of the meat to make sure the meat stays flat.

Cook at 280ºF for about 2 ½ hours or until fork tender. Cut into even squares.

Sunomono Broth

2 T mirin

1 t sugar

1 T sake

½ c rice vinegar

½ c gluten-free soy sauce

Mix all ingredients together. Taste for balance, then chill.

Honey Glaze

½ c local honey

1 knob fresh ginger

2 stalks lemon grass

1 T water

Open the lemon grass and remove the fragrant middle. Chop fine. Clean the ginger and shave. Mix all ingredients into the honey. Let set for 1 hour then strain.

To serve:
Drop a nice square piece of short rib in a small bowl. Brush glaze over meat and add broth. Finish with bacon shard, if desired, thin-shaved raw asparagus and radish.

Serves 6-8 tapas-style.

* We like Shin-mei-do Miso from Denman Island BC. ed.

Pilatus Farms bison brisket on blueberry scone with curried slaw
Paul Campbell, Café de Ville

Why don’t we eat more brisket? Lean, flavourful, inexpensive, simple to cook as long as the method is low and slow with moisture, even more important when the brisket in question is bison. Don’t let the lengthy list of ingredients in this recipe scare you off, it’s easy to put together, and most of the time spent is in the smoker or the oven. This versatile recipe will yield a lovely brisket that can be eaten hot or cold, at a family reunion, on a hike or at a picnic.

1 bison brisket


4 c beef broth

2 bay leaves

1 t dried oregano

2 T butter

¼ c chopped onion

¼ c chopped celery

¼ c chopped green pepper

¼ c minced garlic

2 T dry rub (recipe follows)

½ t dry mustard

½ t salt

½ t ground white pepper

½ t ground black pepper

¼ t cayenne

zest of 2 lemons, grated

juice of 2 lemons

2 T soy sauce

2 T white wine vinegar

1 T olive oil

1 T sesame oil

1 lb sliced bacon small dice

Bring the beef broth, bay leaves and oregano to a simmer. In a large pan, melt the butter and sauté the onion, celery, green pepper garlic, dry rub, mustard, salt, peppers and cayenne for about 5 minutes. When the onion has softened, add the mix to the broth along with the zest and juice of lemon, soy sauce, vinegar and oils. Stir to mix well. Fry the bacon until soft and starting to crisp, and add the bacon and the drippings to the broth mixture. Simmer for 1 hour or until reduced by 1/4.


¼ c salt

2½ c brown sugar

2 T paprika

2 t dry mustard

2 t garlic powder

2 t onion powder

1½ t dried basil

1 t ground bay leaves

¾ t ground coriander

¾ t dried thyme

¾ t ground black pepper

¾ t ground white pepper

pinch ground cumin

Combine ingredients in a mixing bowl then generously coat one brisket. Wrap brisket in plastic wrap and leave in refrigerator overnight. Place brisket in smoker and smoke for about one hour (more if you desire a smokier flavored end product). If you don’t have a smoker, the brisket can be rubbed with liquid smoke (the result won’t be quite the same).

Wrap brisket in foil with two cups mop (or place brisket in a roaster with a tight fitting lid and baste every 1/2 hour with mop), and cook brisket at 200-225ºF until the interior temperature of the thickest part of the brisket registers 185ºF.