Pow Wow Chow on TV Now

The new food series, “Pow Wow Chow,” is now gracing our television screens, and it’s a feast for the eyes and the soul. This 13-episode culinary adventure, produced by InterINDigital and SandBay for APTN, features two talented chefs, Toronto’s Chef Shawn Adler and Blind River’s Chef Bob Chiblow. Together, they traverse the beautiful landscapes of Ontario, bringing his unique flavours and dishes to Pow Wows and live events.

The Chefs

Chef Shawn Adler and Chef Bob Chiblow are the dynamic duo leading us on this culinary adventure. Each brings their unique style and specialties to the table.

Chef Shawn Adler, a renowned figure in Toronto’s food scene, is the mastermind behind Pow Wow Café and Flying Chestnut Kitchen. Chef Adler’s culinary creations are a delightful fusion of traditional and contemporary, with his “bougie tacos” being a standout dish. Made of fry-bread topped with meat sauce, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, and jalapeno peppers, these tacos are a must-try for food enthusiasts. Chef Adler also puts his unique spin on classic Pow Wow fare, such as the scone dog, which he serves with fancy ketchup and mustard.

Hailing from Blind River, Chef Bob Chiblow is the man behind Chiblow Fish, a popular fried fish catering business. Chef Chiblow’s love for food extends beyond fish, as he’s always experimenting with new dishes and ingredients. From wild rice and stir-fries to buffalo and elk, Chef Chiblow’s menu is a testament to the richness and variety of Indigenous cuisine.

“Pow Wow Chow” splits its time between both chefs and their teams, offering viewers an immersive experience in the world of Indigenous food and culture.

The Pow Wow Culture

Pow Wows are traditional Indigenous gatherings that celebrate community, culture, and heritage. They are vibrant events filled with music, dance, regalia, and, of course, food.

Chef Shawn Adler hopes that “Pow Wow Chow” will give more exposure to Pow Wow culture, especially for non-Indigenous viewers. He believes that the show will highlight the beauty and richness of Indigenous traditions, leaving viewers in awe of Pow Wow culture. “Our non-Indigenous friends and allies will see this and be like, ‘Wow, look how amazing the Pow Wow culture is.’ And I think it’s gonna be a great exposure for us,” he said.

Chef Bob Chiblow echoes this sentiment, emphasizing the resilience of Pow Wow culture despite past efforts to extinguish it. “I didn’t want to get too political here, but that was never going to happen,” he said. “We’re strong, resilient people and we’re thriving now.”

The Show

The culinary adventure of “Pow Wow Chow” begins with Chef Bob Chiblow and his wife, Rhonda, travelling north to the familiar grounds of Mississauga No. 8 First Nation. Simultaneously, Chef Shawn Adler, reunited with his high school sweetheart, Whitney, embarks on this journey with her by his side.

Upon leaving Mississauga First Nation, Shawn and Whitney venture towards the Hillside Music Festival, while Bob and Rhonda head to a bustling Pow Wow at Atikameksheng Anishnawbek First Nation. At the Hillside Music Festival, Shawn joins forces with a larger team, having already established a reputation there. Meanwhile, Bob faces a few unexpected challenges, including a dwindling fish supply at Whitefish Lake, which requires him to adapt quickly.

The next chapter of their journey leads both teams to Wikwemikong First Nation on picturesque Manitoulin Island. In a race against time, they must cross the swinging bridge at Little Current and prepare for the highly anticipated first post-pandemic Pow Wow. With new team members on board, the stakes are high, and everyone is eager to showcase their skills.

As the Wiki Pow Wow on Manitoulin Island gains popularity and the line-ups grow, Bob receives assistance from his dedicated cousin, Todd, while Rhonda embraces the lively atmosphere. However, Shawn’s brother, Howard, finds himself in a tricky predicament.

Transitioning from his past commercial fishing experience, Bob now focuses on delighting Pow Wow attendees with his culinary creations. He purchases a fresh supply of Lake Huron whitefish and sets course for Serpent River. The Chiblow team faces new challenges with the recent inclusion of Rhonda’s son and daughter.

Midway through the bustling Pow Wow season, Bob tends to his chiefly responsibilities and then unwinds with Rhonda at the serene Chiblow Lake Lodge. In contrast, Shawn must quickly adapt to an unexpected opening in his schedule, leading him to introduce Indian tacos to an unfamiliar audience at a fall fair.

At Garden River First Nation, the community eagerly anticipates the Pow Wow, but an unexpected power outage poses challenges for both the event and Chiblow Fish & Chips. On a brighter note, Shawn receives valuable guidance from a treasured mentor at the Summerfolk Music Festival.

The Chippewas of Rama First Nation pow wow presents a new set of trials for the Chiblow Fish & Chips and Pow Wow Cafe teams, as they grapple with soaring temperatures and lengthy lines. As the Chippewas of Rama First Nation Pow Wow draws to a close, dwindling propane and food supplies test the chefs’ resourcefulness. Meanwhile, Shawn and Art seize the opportunity to partake in the time-honoured snake dance, a cherished Indigenous tradition.

Before embarking on the journey to the Georgina Island Pow Wow in Sutton, Ont., Shawn and Whitney successfully fulfill a large catering order of 800 meals. They are accompanied by Shawn’s daughter for this new adventure. As the Chiblow team grapples with the possibility of menu modifications, an unexpected downpour further complicates their preparations for the event.

In the final stretch of this year’s Pow Wow trail, Bob experiences the pressure of being one of just two vendors at a gathering near Ottawa. Simultaneously, Shawn resumes his catering operations from his Toronto café and extends a warm invitation to Bob and Rhonda for a celebratory season-end feast at his home in Eugenia.

Wrapping Up

Pow Wow Chow is a captivating culinary journey that showcases the rich Indigenous culture and cuisine. Through the eyes of Chef Shawn Adler and Chef Bob Chiblow, viewers are treated to a delightful fusion of traditional and contemporary dishes, as the chefs navigate the vibrant world of Pow Wows across Ontario. The show not only highlights the beauty and resilience of Pow Wow culture but also emphasizes the importance of preserving and celebrating Indigenous traditions. As the chefs face unique challenges and forge new connections along the way, Pow Wow Chow brings people together and tells the stories of Indigenous communities.

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