Bremer Community Cook-off Serves up Winning Recipe; St. Paul Hotel’s Chef Kapps Takes Home Honors
St. Paul, Minn. - June 10, 2008 - Stiff competition, unexpected ingredients and an untrained staff couldn’t stop Chef Lance Kapps, of the St. Paul Hotel, from winning the first annual Bremer Community Cook-off in St. Paul.
Chef Kapps created the winning meal – described by one judge as "a perfect mix of spinach and prunes"– from ingredients that included canned green beans, cube steak and dried prunes.
The Bremer Bank-sponsored event brought four well-known chefs and their celebrity sous chef teams together in an Iron Chef-type competition. The twist? Ingredients were items commonly found at local food shelves. The event was designed to raise awareness for the growing problem of hunger in the community, while also raising funds for Second Harvest Heartland.
"The generosity of the chefs from the St. Paul Hotel, Pazzaluna, Meritage and Garden County was exceptional," said Stan Dardis, chief executive officer of Bremer Financial Corporation. "They willingly lent their time and talents to this important cause. I also want to thank the on-air folks from KARE, KMSP, KSTP, WCCO and KS95-FM who added great color to the afternoon and our judges from the Pioneer Press, Star Tribune, Minneapolis-St. Paul Magazine and the Minnesota Thunder – they were good sports and helped make the event a real crowd-pleaser."
This is the third year that Bremer Bank has teamed with Second Harvest Heartland in the fight to end hunger. The annual "Make Change" campaign is stimulated by a $75,000 grant from the Otto Bremer Foundation, with the bank challenging the community to help it meet or exceed this amount. Donations can be made at any Bremer bank or online at Bremer.com throughout the month of June.
Last year, the campaign raised more than $138,000 for America’s Second Harvest Food Banks. Second Harvest Heartland is able to leverage these donations and can distribute more than $9 worth of food for every dollar raised.
"Bremer’s support is extraordinary!" said Rob Zeaske, executive director of Second Harvest Heartland. "By supporting our efforts to end hunger, they are fulfilling their vision of building healthy communities through partnerships – this event is a great example of that."
Bremer Financial Corporation
Bremer Financial Corporation is a privately-held, $7.5 billion regional financial services company jointly owned by its employees and the Otto Bremer Foundation. This unique ownership structure is the only one of its kind in the nation. Founded in 1943 by Otto Bremer, the company is headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota and provides a comprehensive range of banking, investment, trust and insurance services to more than 100 locations in Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin. Company profits are distributed in the form of charitable grants by the Otto Bremer Foundation to communities served by Bremer. In 2007, more than $30 million in charitable donations were given across the Bremer footprint and employees donated more than 92,900 volunteer hours to their communities.