Chef Matt Davidson of Añejo Restaurant will be introducing us to Mexican style food on the Calgary Co-op Kitchen Theatre stage Monday July 6th at 3PM and Tuesday, July 7th and 5PM. in the BMO Marketplace Hall A. This won’t be your typical taco as Añejo prides itself on “handcrafted recipes cooked to perfection in Mexican style with a flair for contemporary flavours. Vibrant, boisterous, and bold. Spanish for “aged”, Añejo is not just a type of tequila, it is a way of paying homage to the roots of Mexican culture.”
For a full list of presenters on the Calgary Co-op Kitchen Theatre stage please visit the Western Showcase website.
Calgary Stampede (CS): Briefly tell us about yourself and what your typical day looks like.
Davidson: I am a young Chef from Calgary and work at Añejo Restaurant as the Chef de Cuisine. I graduated from Culinary School and have since worked at numerous restaurants around Calgary and under some amazing Chefs to hone my skills.
My typical day usually involves checking over the prep for the day and communication with my sous chefs around the daily issues of the restaurant. Then lunch service and then preparing for dinner service. I will generally oversee dinner service and ensure quality standards are met, and help wherever I am needed on line. In between all this, new menu research, and the occasional inspirational trip to Mexico need to be done as well.
CS: When did you know you wanted to be involved in the food industry?
Davidson: My first job was as a dishwasher when I was 13 years old, and upon working in an industrial kitchen and experiencing the chaos and noise firsthand, I became addicted. I was always so jealous of the line cooks in their cool jackets making food for so many people that I decided that I wanted to become a chef, and well, here we are today.
CS: What do you love about your job?
Davidson: I love that every day is different. There’s never a boring day in a kitchen, and every dinner service presents new challenges. Every time you need to write a menu there’s an infinite world of possibilities and I love the ability to express myself in an ever changing manner.
CS: Do you have a favourite memory of the Calgary Stampede or Kitchen Theatre?
Davidson: As a 6th generation Calgarian, the Stampede has always been a big deal for my family. I think my favorite memory would be going with my mom, and attempting to win one of those gigantic plush toys. I was about 10 and I was terrible at the game and it ended up costing WELL more than the dragon was worth, but I did win it.
CS: Do you have a recipe you would share with our readers?
Braised Boar Tacos
Rub one shoulder of boar with molasses and any dry rub spice mix. Place in a slow cooker and add two bottles of root beer, an one litre of chicken stock. Cook for 10 hours or until tender enough to pull apart.
In a bowl combine:
2 cups ketchup
1 cup sugar
½ cup honey
3 chipotle in adobo chilies
1 tbsp garlic powder
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Once the boar has been pulled apart, combine the sauce and meat and mix thoroughly. Serve with warm corn tortillas, cabbage and any other taco fixins.