Monday, April 4, 2016

Event: Spot Prawn Festival Celebrates 10 years of Spot Prawns

The Chefs' Table Society of British Columbia celebrates 10 years of the Spot Prawn Festival with new and exciting events that include an inaugural Spot Prawn Gala at the Vancouver Club on May 13, 2016 at 6:00pm. The black tie, six-course gala celebrates 10 years of educating locals and visitors about this Pacific North West delicacy.

Chefs Angus An (Vancouver), Ned Bell (Vancouver), Matthias Fong (Calgary), Anthony Walsh (Toronto), Bill Jones (Cowichan) and Sean Cousins (Vancouver) will prepare six courses featuring BC Spot Prawns and other delicacies paired to local libations. Bella Gelateria will provide a sorbet for palate cleansing. Dessert will be provided by the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts. Proceeds of the event will be given to Oceanwise.

>> Buy your tickets for the inaugural Spot Prawn Gala here.

Spot Prawn Cooking Class

Along with the Spot Prawn Gala, are cooking classes at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts (PICA) on Saturday, May 14, 2016. Learn how to purchase, store, prepare and cook spot prawns. In celebration of the 10th anniversary, the Chefs' Table Society and the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts have joined forces and are offering a unique cooking class!

Join us at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts on Saturday, May 14 for a one-hour cooking class revealing the secrets of how to purchase, store, prepare, and cook spot prawns. A delicious dish featuring spot prawn will be served and a Q&A to follow.

Attendees of the cooking class will receive a certificate for a 10% discount on a purchase of fresh spot prawns this season at The Fish Counter, along with an apron from PICA.

Your hosts will include chef Darren Clay, executive culinary chef instructor at PICA, and chef Robert Clark, founder of the Spot Prawn Festival and owner of The Fish Counter.

There are six class times available, from 11am to 4pm.

>> Tickets are available for $35 + GST + service charge here.

Stay tuned for more information about the Spot Prawn Festival and Boil!

Wild BC spot prawns are a delicacy known around the world for their sweet, delicate flavour and firm texture, and are the largest of the seven commercial species of shrimp found on the west coast of Canada. While they vary in size, they are most recognizable for their reddish brown colour, which turns bright pink when cooked, defining white spots on their tail and white horizontal bars on the carapace.

BC spot prawns are available live during the harvest season, which usually starts in May and lasts anywhere from six to eight weeks. Prawn fishermen spread baited traps along the rocky ocean floor at depths ranging from 40 to 100 metres. This method has minimal impact on ocean habitat and very low levels of by catch of other species.

In BC, approximately 2,450 metric tonnes are harvested annually, with about 65% of the harvest coming from the waters between Vancouver Island and the mainland.

BC spot prawns are very popular in Japan and the rest of Asia, with more than 90% of BC's commercial catch consumed there. Most of the prawns are frozen at sea by fishermen, and then packed and exported across the Pacific. The remaining few, however, are available to be enjoyed fresh in local BC restaurants and kitchens during the fishing season! Frozen spot prawns are also available in Canada year round.

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