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Recipe Swap: RRC and Granny’s cooking up new food ideas

Many of us love the scent of chicken roasting in the kitchen. It’s an aroma that always makes me think of a Sunday supper.

Chicken (or turkey) is always popular for family meals, but how tastes have changed! Thai Chicken Curry Fried Rice or Jamaican Jerk Turkey anyone? Those are the kinds of recipes you now regularly find on the websites of Manitoba Chicken Producers or Manitoba Turkey Producers, both of which recognize the ever-expanding diversity and new flavour demands among consumers of their poultry products.

There’s more to come. Granny’s Poultry, Manitoba’s largest poultry processor co-operative plans to start working together with students at Red River College’s Paterson Global Foods Institute to come up with even more new ways to put chicken and turkey on our dinner tables.

It all begins this month when a team from Granny’s and the college’s Culinary Arts, Hotel and Restaurant Management and Professional Baking and Apprenticeship staff and students will start imagining and developing new ways to prepare and enjoy chicken and turkey — on the home front as well as in restaurants.

It’s building on the success with other already introduced new products like Ginseng-fed chicken and omega 3-infused turkey. Granny’s will conduct its independent research in its own space in the downtown Winnipeg institute to put more of these kinds of flavourful, unique chicken and turkey products on our dinner tables.

The farmer-owned co-op is investing $200,000 in the educational initiative, which is the single largest donation ever made in its 50-year history.

Red River College’s culinary arts program has had a long history of using locally produced foods and working on food innovation in partnership with Manitoba food commodity groups.

In a news release Craig Evans, CEO of Granny’s Poultry Co-operative, said the aim with this venture is to tap into the creativity of RRC’s students to develop unique recipes and menu ideas, new ways to eat and enjoy all parts of the bird, and more ways to make poultry an everyday protein in a healthy diet.

Sounds like our dinner memories will continue to include chicken and turkey — but with spices and flavour combinations Mom never dreamed of.

There are countless ways to make delicious meals with chicken and turkey. Here are two recipes reprinted from the Granny’s Poultry website ( There you can also find cooking videos, the Great Taste Healthy Living magazine, new products and advice from dietitians. You can also post your questions and consult with Granny’s in-house chef Jason Wortzman.

Tomato Chili Relish

  • 1 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp. onion, minced
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1-1/2 tsp. dried red chili flakes
  • 2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1-1/2 c. canned Italian tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. cracked black pepper

Sauté garlic and onions in oil. Add chili flakes, vinegar, tomatoes, sea salt and black pepper. Simmer over low heat until thick. Cool. Serve relish over Chicken and Sweet Potato Fritters.

Chicken and Sweet Potato Fritters with Tomato Chili Relish

This recipe comes from Great Taste Healthy Living, Issue 3, which contains all sorts of food entertaining ideas for including poultry on a special occasion. But at 15 minutes to make and another 15 to cook, you won’t want to wait for a holiday to try this.

  • 3/4 lb. Granny’s fresh boneless, skinless chicken thigh, diced small
  • 1/2 c. sweet potato, peeled and diced small
  • 4 tbsp. flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 c. green onion
  • 1 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. ground coriander seed
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 c. vegetable oil

Microwave diced sweet potatoes on high for two minutes and let cool. Beat eggs in a bowl, then add flour and mix. Add diced chicken, sweet potato, onion, garlic, lemon juice and seasonings. Mix well. Heat a frying pan on low then add oil. Carefully drop fritter mixture into the oil one tablespoon at a time. When cooked on one side, flip over and continue until fully cooked. Serve warm with Tomato-Chili Relish.

Slow Cooker Turkey Drumstick Cassoulet

This family meal recipe was created by Jason Wortzman chef and director of marketing and new product development at Granny’s Poultry. Jason describes this as a rustic gourmet recipe that’s easy to make and costs only about $3 per serving. (I’ve made this recipe several times. It is so easy to make, absolutely delicious and is a lovely dish to serve with its contrasting red and green colours. — Lorraine)

  • 1.5 kg Granny’s turkey drumsticks
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 c. onion, diced
  • 2 tbsp. garlic, diced
  • 1/4 c. red wine
  • 1 796-ml can low-sodium whole tomatoes
  • 1 c. homemade or low-sodium turkey or chicken stock
  • 1 540-ml can romano beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 c. chopped Swiss chard or baby spinach

Brown drumsticks in a deep frying pan over medium-high heat, then place into slow cooker. Sauté onion and garlic until translucent. Add red wine, simmer for 5 minutes and scrape the bottom of the pan. Drain tomatoes. Chop and add to pan. Add stock, beans and seasoning, then stir. Add tomato and bean mixture to slow cooker and cook on low for 5.5 hours. Set on high for 20 minutes and stir in Swiss chard or spinach. Serve with mashed potatoes or fresh cooked pasta and Parmesan cheese. Source: Granny’s Poultry

About the author


Lorraine Stevenson

Lorraine Stevenson is a reporter and photographer for the Manitoba Co-operator with 25 years experience writing news and features. She was previously a reporter with the Farmers Independent Weekly and has also written for community newspapers in Winnipeg and Manitoba's Interlake.



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