Our Not-So-Secret Goal to turn Lamont County and Andrew, site of the Babas & Borshch Ukrainian Festival, into....drumroll, please........


Have you planted your beets, carrots, onions, garlic and more?

All 'closet' borshch cooks are invite to enter the Cook Off to strut their stuff and earn bragging rights in the second annual contest.

The registration form and rules of the 2014 BORSHCH COOK OFF are now available. Please note the changes and deadline of August 1st.

Check the  BBUF BLOG for Helen Zachoda's 2013 1st prize winning borshch recipe.



Learn how to make Borshch during a 1-hour demo class led by Chef Gail Hall on Saturday at 2 PM. Sample some borshch and receive recipes from last year’s Borshch Cook Off entrants.

Buy your $10 ticket on site at the Information Table. Space is limited.



  • Borshch has multiple spellings including borscht, borsch, bortsch. We chose the culturally accurate one BORSHCH with 2 H's. In Ukrainian that's  borshch_ukie_spelling.
  • Borshch can be red, white or green in colour depending on the primary ingredients used.
  • There are as many opinions on where borshch originated as there are people discussing it. We choose to believe it's a gift to the world from Ukraine.
  • The debate rages on as to whether or not real borshch has meat in it. Jury's still out as far as we know : ) 

Ruth Hamaliuk's lovely presentation in the 2013 Cook Off.


Borshch Cook Off Judges

Returning in 2014, Chef Gail Hall, friend of the Festival. 
Gail Hall is an enlightened epicurean, chef, food activist, food writer and educator. In 2005, she began Seasoned Solutions, Loft Cooking School, Culinary Tours and Consulting Company. Gail Hall’s love of cooking and satisfaction with feeding people fresh, great food, inspired her to leave her successful career as a civil servant and start Gourmet Goodies catering in 1985.
Gail’s vision was to provide a customized catering service that could be whatever the client wanted it to be. Gourmet Goodies became an award-winning catering company and one of the top five catering establishments in Canada, setting new standards for food quality, presentation, retailing of local and regional food products, cooking classes and culinary tours. Contact her

Anastasia Martin-Stilwell

Anastasia has been employed in the hospitality & tourism sectors for 20 years and is currently a Business Development Manager with Travel Alberta. Prior to, she held tenures as Director of Corporate Communication with Tourism Jasper, Director of Media & Public Relations for Travel Alberta Regional, and a lengthy 11+ year run with Fairmont Hotels & Resorts that included terms leading the PR efforts for two iconic resort properties.

Anastasia’s forefathers hailed from the Hutsulschyna region of Ukraine and she embraced her rich heritage from a very young age, learning to play the mandolin and ‘Bihunetsing’ into 25 years of Ukrainian dancing starting at the age of six. The Carpathians beckoned years down the road and Anastasia took her fine art studies abroad to the PreCarpathian University in Ivano-Frankivsk – studies that included learning the Bandura, dancing with the institute’s Ukrainian dance troupe, and understudying with the State Professional Hutsul Ensemble of Song and Dance.

Anastasia is a culinary tourist whose immense passion for authentic Ukrainian food (including a great bowl of Borshch!) was seeded many years ago in her busy Baba’s kitchen. She was thrilled to be asked to judge this year’s Borshch Cook-Off and looks forward to sampling the tasty results from the competitors’ kitchens.