Calling all home cooks, the Saskatoon Hispanic community hopes to crown a salsa champion.
“For many reasons, because nachos and salsa is a staple food in the Mexican culture and people love salsa for the food and people also like the dance,” Ivan Navas-Morales, event organizer for Salsa Fiesta, said.
Bringing together the Saskatoon Farmer’s Market and the Saskatoon Co-op, Morales hopes to highlight the Latino and Hispanic community in Saskatoon and throw a party.
There’s some friendly competition at the heart of the event, pinning the best salsa recipes against each other, eventually crowning a champion. The competition comes with a catch.
“For the competition we ask that any participant that wants to bring their salsa from home, use local ingredients, make it original, make your salsa the way you like it, be it spicy or not spicy and we’ll have three judges taste these and they will decide who the winner is,” Morales said, adding personally he doesn’t stray too far away from the classic ingredients.
“The normal recipe usually calls for what we have in Saskatoon, regular tomatoes, onions, garlic, green peppers, vinegar, water and salt — all blended together and you can add (hot sauce).”
Co-organizer Vladimir Gonzalez usually kicks his salsa up a notch.
“Definitely the chili is the most important thing in the salsa,” he said.
Morales has secured three local chefs to adjudicate the competition, including Michael McKeown from Prairie Harvest Café, Ricardo Jacinto from the Sheraton-Cavalier and Dale McKay from the Ayden’s Kitchen and Bar.
Major sponsor Saskatoon Co-op will have prizes for the top three recipes, but the winner will get a very special prize: Saskatoon Co-op and Federated Co-op will publish the recipe and distribute it in all Co-op stores Canadawide and online at the Co-op Connection website. The winner will also have their name featured on a plaque at the Farmer’s Market.
“Aside from the local vendors in the marketplace we will also have restaurants visiting us from the Hispanic community and businesses from the Hispanic community just to show that we’re here we’re part of it and we support our local community,” Morales said, adding there will be live music, singing, dancing, a DJ and much more.
Entry fees have been lifted for the competition, so organizers are expecting lots of entries and the more creative the better. The event begins at 10 a.m.on Sept. 6.