MANKATO -- Dana Elliott has given interviews about food all over the country.
As a seven-year "seasoned" veteran of the Taste of Home Cooking School -- as the Indianapolis chef expert wittily characterizes herself -- Elliott delivers simple, easy-to-learn, family-style recipes to audiences all over the country on behalf of Taste of Home. As such, she spends a good share of her time helping to promote the events by speaking with newspapers, media stations and anxious foodies in advance of Cooking School events.
But in Mankato's case, it's not the local cuisine that has Elliott excited to visit the Minnesota River Valley for the first time.
"I'm super stoked about coming to Mankato," Elliott said. "I've never been there, but I feel like already know it from reading 'Little House on the Prairie' when I was little. I'm excited to be in a place I grew up with but have yet to discover in person."
Discovery will be on the menu, then, for both Elliott and her audience when she leads the Taste of Home Cooking School event on May 21 at Verizon Wireless Center. The event is sponsored by The Free Press Media.
Every year, more than 300 Cooking School events attract upward of 300,000 people. With cooking demonstrations by the Taste of Home team, attendees learn seasonal recipes that are manageable for every skill level. Like all Taste of Home recipes, these recipes were shared by people who cook at home as a way to bring family and friends together, and can be made with readily available ingredients.
Those in attendance learn tips and tricks that will help save time and make the most of every cooking experience. In addition, everyone goes home with a gift bag valued at more than $50.