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North Okanagan restaurants take spotlight in new cookbook

Enderby’s Small Axe Roadhouse, Vernon’s Silver Star and Sparkling Hill featured in Okanagan Eats

Several local restaurants have made their way into a cookbook that offers a taste of the Okanagan Valley.

Okanagan Eats is a collection of more than 70 recipes from the Okanagan’s best chefs, restaurants, cafes, bakeries and wineries. It features the stories of food and wine experts, alongside some vibrant photography.

The cookbook aims to bring the culinary traditions of the Okanagan to greater prominence, where food is fresh and delicious, and wine is bountiful.

Vernon’s SilverStar Mountain Resort and Sparkling Hill Resort, and Enderby’s Small Axe Roadhouse, are all featured.

SilverStar’s pages include a recipe for potato gnocchi with venison ragu — “the kind of hearty fare skiers and cyclists love after an action-packed day on the mountain.” There is also a recipe for an Okanagan fruit clafoutis with red wine ice cream — clafoutis being a classic French dish “somewhere between a pancake and baked custard” and stuffed with fresh fruit.

“Nothing whets the appetite quite like a day spent hiking, biking or skiing in the mountains, and SilverStar’s executive chef Scott Sanderson is determined that no one will leave his mountain hungry,” the book reads.

The Small Axe Roadhouse is introduced with an interview with owner Sarah Dudley, who talks about working in Vancouver pubs as well as a “fancy tweezered-food bistro” in Whistler before deciding she wasn’t feeling the big city. Moving to Enderby, a city of about 3,000, fit the bill. There is a recipe for Yorkie bowls as well as savoury crab cakes with potato latkes.

“We want to be fun and inclusive. People were hungry for a place where the food is different. We came in and did pretty good food and people appreciate that,” Dudley says. “I’m super proud.”

At Sparkling Hill Resort, founder and CEO Hans-Peter Mayr has created a hotbed of regional food and wine at the PeakFine restaurant to go along with a European-style spa. Aside from the infinity pool, saunas and hilltop views, the highlight of a stay at the resort is the dining. The cookbook includes recipes for Okanagan ribollita — a hearty and traditional Tuscan soup — and truffle mushroom penne.

“It’s like a mushroom alfredo with truffle and you wouldn’t know it was vegan,” says executive chef John Stratton.

The authors of the book are Joanne Sasvari and Dawn Postnikoff. Sasvari is the editor of the magazines YAM, Vitis and The Alchemist and writes about food, drink and travel for Edible Vancouver, Destination BC, Food and Wine magazine and various other publications. She is also the author of the IACP-shortlisted book The Wickaninnish Cookbook. In addition, she is a Canadian wine scholar, a level two B.C. wine ambassador and is certified to level three by the Wine and Spirits Education Trust.

As co-founder of Edible Vancouver Island, Postnikoff shares her passion for coastal living and the local food and beverage culture. Having left the corporate world to become a golf course and restaurant owner in 2008, she now organizes several events and festivals each year, works closely with her local chefs’ association and promotes culinary tourism throughout the region. Postnikoff is a mom to five “mostly grown up” children and loves spending time outdoors when she isn’t playing in her kitchen or sipping wine with friends.

Okanagan Eats will be hitting the shelves in local bookstores Sept. 5.

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Brendan Shykora
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Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started at the Morning Star as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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