For ten years the Hands-On Cook-Off contest has been an annual event here in British Columbia. The event is hosted by Better Together BC, an online community dedicated to promoting and enabling families cooking and eating together, and this unique contest challenges you to create and submit your own 3-minute cooking video.

How To Enter The #HandsOnCookOff Contest

The rules are simple. Shoot a video of at least two people creating a healthy meal together. Simple eh? Oh, as I said before it must be 3 mins maximum and the rules say that this time limit will be STRICTLY ENFORCED, so you should probably make it a maximum of 2:58 just to be on the safe side.

Closing date is May 15t 2019 but to be in with a chance to win the People’s Choice category you should get your entry posted ASAP so you can badger your friends and family to visit the site and vote.

When you have your epic recipe video good to go, visit the Better Together BC site and upload your masterpiece.

How And What You Could Win

There are two judged categories – the Youth category and the Multigenerational category – and two random draws, so there are plenty of ways to win. Not to mention the People’s Choice award which goes to the video with the most public votes so don’t forget to share your entry, and use #HandsOnCookOff to spread the word.

The prizes are all cash so you can go out and stock up your kitchen with nutritious ingredients to enjoy, some fabulous kitchen gear to elevate your cooking game, or maybe even treat the family to a magnificent night out, or two, or three, at your favourite restaurant.

After all, the only thing as good as cooking and eating together is eating together AND having the luxury of another kitchen genius prepare it for you.

Speaking of which, this years judges are the usual eclectic mix of brilliant BCer’s:

I have had the pleasure of interviewing several of the judges and will be sharing their thoughts on cooking, family, and sustainability over the next couple of days, as well as sharing some spectacular hints and tips to take your entry from a tasty nibble to an awe-inspiring gastronomic experience for the ages.

Well, maybe that’s overstretching it a little but I can definitely share some advice so you can make your entry the best it can be.

That will be hitting your screen tomorrow until then you can enjoy this interview with Ned Bell, Ocean Wise Executive Chef and Culinary Director of the Vancouver Club

#HandsOnCookOff Interview: Ned Bell

Ned Bell is an award-winning chef, a regular on our TV screens, and a passionate advocate for sustainable seafood. He is also father to three sons which makes him a fabulous choice for a #HandsOnCookOff judge.

What’s the first thing you remember cooking?

Stir-fries I think I cooked stir-fries and fajitas for a year straight 🙂 A little of this focus was down to the fact I was trying to master them, but it was just as much about the fact that we loved Asian and Mexican food.

Who did you cook with?

From the time I was about 12 years of age, I would enjoy cooking with both my brother and my sister in our family home in Victoria.

Where should BC families go to buy sustainable seafood?

A black and white Ocean Wise Logo.

If you want to be sure to buy the more sustainable option when you shop for seafood you can look for the Ocean Wise Logo. It is used in fish/seafood stores and other retailers as well as at restaurants and can only be used on specific products which have met the Ocean Wise criteria or by restaurants who are part of the Ocean Wise program.

What is it that makes you so passionate about sustainable seafood?

I love the Ocean. I grew up on a farm and on the Ocean and I want to do everything I can to protect the ecosystem and the species that rely on the world’s oceans.

Every second breath we take comes from the ocean, so, this is a human conversation, a food conversation, we can’t grow anything on land without a healthy ocean

How would you advise a family that wants to lower their dietary impact on the environment?

Shop seasonally, shop locally. Know a farmer, know a fisherman, support them by buying from them.

Eat what the ecosystem gives you, and remember when we are taking about Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.

We must Reduce first.

Less is more.

What would you suggest as a good “starter” recipe for kids who aren’t keen on fish?

One of my recipes from my cookbook Lure: Sustainable Recipes From The West Coast – Miso Honey Salmon with Sushi Rice.

What is your secret food vice?

Leave 2-3 lines blank at the bottom of your grocery list and force yourself to buy a few things that you don’t normally buy. Then cook with them for your family. Maybe odd vegetables, or pulses or grains or sustainable seafood. Try new things, introduce new things. Diversity is key.

What is your family’s favorite meal to cook and eat together?

That’s easy. Miso Honey Glazed and Baked Salmon, Mashed potatoes and roasted broccoli.

If you would like to follow Better Together or Ned Bell on social media or visit them online. You can also search #HandsOnCookOff for the latest news.

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