Blending and Extending at The Royal Winter Fair


Llamas, goats and cows oh my!

It was a plethora of barnyard critters this past weekend as I attend for the first time the The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair.

A cowboys and cowgirls dream. Saddles, and mucking things and farming doodads, the Royal has been educating, promoting and celebrating all things agricultural and equestrian since 1922. Despite being the largest fair of its kind in the world I had yet to pay it a visit. You would think as a food aficionado I could appreciate all those yummy looking roast beefs with legs however I always thought it was a little too country for this city girl. I quickly learned I was missing out on tons of deliciousness.

While you will be knee deep in all things hoofed, snouted or feathered there are lots of great food related activities to enjoy. For one the food court it not your average chicken fingers and french fries kind of affair.  Tacos, bison burgers, mac and cheese, and falafels are just a few items that can tantalize your tastebuds.  For something a bit sweeter you can always buy a slab ‘O’ fudge or even better this amazing hot apple dumpling with rich vanilla ice cream and butterscotch sauce.

The Royal Winter Fair (1 of 8)

You don’t just eat the food here either. Swing by one of the many stages to learn about eggs, cheese, local produce and more. I will be totally biased when I say my favorite show of the day came from my peeps over at Mushrooms Canada. As you already know my developed taste for mushrooms was an acquired thing. Yet since then I can’t seem to get enough of them.  And while my friends always gasp when I say I don’t like cucumbers, I equally gape when their sentiments to mushrooms lean towards the negative. This is why I love their Blend and Extend campaign. I’ve preached about its virtues before.  I have proudly converted coworkers and family member to the way of B & E (not the criminal kind) and love to see the reaction of newcomers to this brilliant way to make healthier meals, extend your grocery bills and sway disbelievers to the fun-gi side. Watching the audience this past weekend absorb the simplicity of this technique I just want to grab someone and say ” I know right?!? Hidden vegetables!!”

Blend and Extend

It’s simple folks; swap out up to half your ground beef in any recipe with mushrooms. Still unsure. Get yourself to the internet and visit their site for simple and delicious recipes like this taco salad. There are mushrooms in this people!!!! But you would never know. And it tastes amazing!!

The Royal Winter Fair (5 of 8)

That’s what makes events like the Royal Fair so wonderful.  It’s a vast space with a ton of knowledge waiting to be shared.  Out of all the visitors that day, how many went home and thought “hey I can blend and extend that.” That’s how I got started and trust me it’s worth it.

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