For the past 6 years, The Prairie Oat Growers Association of Canada (POGA) has organized an Oat Recipe Contest as part of the Avena Canadiense project. The contest celebrates the health benefits and versatility of oats. Any Mexican citizen, be they a casual home cook or a professional chef, can take part in the contest. This year, for the first time ever, the contest featured four distinct categories; traditional Mexican cuisine, vegetarian, gluten-free and creative recipes. Despite the difficult circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mexican cooks enthusiastically responded to the contest challenge submitting 93 recipes, creatively incorporating oats into a variety of dishes.
The 2020 contest winners participated in a virtual award ceremony on June 30th via Zoom Webinar that was broadcasted on Facebook Live. In attendance were H.E. Graeme C. Clark, Ambassador of Canada in Mexico and Jenneth Johanson President of POGA.
This year’s 12 winning recipes are:
Category Inspired by traditional Mexican Cuisine
- First place: Oat-Hash Stuffed Peppers in Oat Salsa by Keren Aideth Velazquez
- Second place: Oat-Chicken Pozole Guerrero Style by Dulce Mayumi Alonso Navarrete
- Third place: Healthy Ximbo Tacos by Brenda Deyanira Corona Candelaria
- First place: Vegan Poblano Cake by Chantall Vigueras Lopez
- Second place: Summer Panna Cotta Tart by Gilda Melgar
- Third place: Rustic Oat Bread with Aromatic Herbs by Evelyn Moreno Sanchez
- First place: Pork loin with mole sauce made with oats by Adriana Gabriela Pérez Ruiz
- Second place: Oatmeal Gluten Free Paris-Brest by Andrea Karina Lagunas
- Third place: Healthy Chocolate and Black Olive Cookies by Maria Guadalupe Arellano Salas
- First place: Super Powerful Oat, Matcha, Blueberry and Lavender Popsicles by Grishka Guzman Chavez
- Second place: Oat Crusted Fish with Garam Masala and Oatmeal Pita Bread by Flor Angelica Perez Carrasco
- Third place: Oat Cheese Guadalupe by Gonzalez Guerrero
The recipes were judged by a panel consisting of a member of the POGA team, the Mexican Diabetes Federation (la Federación Mexicana de Diabetes), and the Canadian Embassy in Mexico. The panel selected the winning recipes for their presentation, nutritional value, and creativity.
At the ceremony, POGA President Jenneth Johanson shared: “It is a great honor to represent Canadian oats at this virtual event to celebrate so many talented Mexican cooks. I am astonished by the enthusiasm and passion shown by the almost 100 participants who, despite the pandemic, worked hard to create such an extraordinary variety of new dishes from Pozole Guerrero Style to Oat Ice Cream. This recipe contest is a demonstration of the extreme versatility of oats that can provide nutritional values and diversity for healthy diets, satisfy new and traditional food preferences and be essential ingredients of all the meals of the day. Definitely, oats aren’t just for breakfast anymore!!!”
The Canadian Ambassador to Mexico, H.E. Graeme C. Clark, was also present to celebrate the winners. He stated: “I want to congratulate the winners of this year’s recipe contest, who represented in an excellent way the great passion that Mexican people have for Canadian oats. I am delighted to see that Mexican people enjoy our oats as much as Canadians love Mexican Cuisine.”
In addition to the awards, the 12 winners will have their recipes professionally photographed and promoted on the Avena Canadiense website, YouTube and Facebook. As in the past years, the recipes will also be compiled into a recipe booklet, which will be promoted at various events, including cooking classes in celebration of World Diabetes Day on November 14. If you missed watching the event you can still see the Award Ceremony online!