Keane Amdahl is many things—he’s a Minnesota Food Dude, he’s Foodstoned, he’s a Minnesota Food Blogger, he writes for Twin Cities Food Finds, and he’s a serious home cook—but most of all he’s a guy who’s interested in vibrant, local food communities and cultures. Amdahl’s interest in Minnesota’s food community has led him to direct and host a new video series, Above the Burner. The first episode was released this week, garnering some serious attention on Twitter and Facebook.
About 11 minutes long, episode one features South Minneapolis Chef Adam Vickerman of Café Levain and Ben Quam of Kieran’s Irish Pub and the Northstar Bartenders Guild. Vickerman and Quam team up on the video to show us how to prepare roasted chicken with polenta, compote, and brown butter, as well as a classic Kentucky Sidecar and a nonalcoholic tangerine cooler. The video also features Liz from Clancey’s Meat & Fish, who talks about why she values local farmers and local food.
Amdahl grew up in St Francis, Minn. His dad was a cook, which piqued his interest in all things food-related. Inspired by programs such as No Reservations and Wisconsin Foodie, Amdahl set out to explore and document relationships among food, vendors, chefs, and communities.
Working with photographer Michael Patrick, Amdahl started shooting episode one in mid-February. With a few insights under his belt (microphones and refrigerators don’t play well together), he’s already planning episode two. He says the formula will be somewhat the same for each monthly episode—a cooking demonstration using local ingredients, a cocktail recipe, and talk of why cooking local ingredients is interesting, but also important.
“The more respect you show your food, the more you get from it, ultimately,” said Amdahl.
For now, the show will be based in Minnesota, but Above the Burner could reach other cities, as Amdahl explores with his formula of showing the viewer how to prepare chef-inspired dishes and cocktails using local ingredients at home.