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Yellowknife youth publish community cookbook with favourite recipes

Aimee Yurris and Rana Saghafi participated in the making of a community cookbook in Yellowknife, by youth, for youth. They held a launch party in late January. (Submitted by Aimee Yurris - image credit)
Aimee Yurris and Rana Saghafi participated in the making of a community cookbook in Yellowknife, by youth, for youth. They held a launch party in late January. (Submitted by Aimee Yurris - image credit)

A new cookbook, by youth for youth, has chronicled the recipes of a youth cooking program in Yellowknife.

The Kitchen Talks! Fall 2023 Community Cookbook was printed with the help of a grant, and is being distributed to youth for free.

Aimee Yurris, who led the project, said she and others began collecting the recipes in the fall of 2023 through the Kitchen Talks program associated with the Home Base youth centre and the Tree of Peace Friendship Centre.

"Over the summer last year was when we did some brainstorming and came up with the idea for the cookbook," Yurris said. "Then it was between October and December of 2023 that we made all the recipes at the Kitchen Talks program, collected the photos and the recipes and put it all together."

The youth community cookbook includes recipes such as caribou stew, shepherds pie and hamburger soup.
The youth community cookbook includes recipes such as caribou stew, shepherds pie and hamburger soup.

The youth community cookbook includes recipes such as caribou stew, shepherds pie and hamburger soup. (Submitted by Aimee Yurris)

The cookbook includes a mix of recipes, including caribou stew, bannock, shepherd's pie and hamburger soup.

"These are some things that youth requested to learn how to make and also things that we had guests, like elders, come and teach us. And then we've also got some recipes that were contributed by community partners," she said.

Rana Saghafi, a youth support worker who was part of the project, said her favourite dish in the cookbook is the lemon poppyseed muffins, and recalls the joy of baking them with the youth and supporting them in discovering new things.

The Kitchen Talks! Fall 2023 Community Cookbook includes a variety of recipes that youth cooked through a Yellowknife cooking program, and is being distributed to young people through the city's youth centre.
The Kitchen Talks! Fall 2023 Community Cookbook includes a variety of recipes that youth cooked through a Yellowknife cooking program, and is being distributed to young people through the city's youth centre.

The Kitchen Talks! Fall 2023 Community Cookbook includes a variety of recipes that youth cooked through a Yellowknife cooking program, and is being distributed to young people through the city's youth centre. (Submitted by Aimee Yurris)

"It was really cool because you have to zest the lemon and juice it … they were super confused, they didn't know that they could grate the lemon," she said.

The group held a launch party in late January and is distributing the books through the youth centre.

Looking ahead, they're considering making a winter cookbook too.