MDC offers Field to Fork wild cooking clinic in Columbia May 13

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COLUMBIA, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) will offer a free Field to Fork event in Columbia May 13. Field to Fork is a Discover Nature program that helps Missourians connect conservation with cuisine.

In this workshop, Chef Walker Claridge, and Bernadette Dryden, author of MDC’s Cooking Wild in Missouri cookbook, will demonstrate preparation and cooking methods, showcase several recipes, and provide small-plate samples for participants to taste.

This event will feature spring-seasonal wild game, fresh fish, and foraged wild edibles from Missouri’s woods and waters. The menu will also feature Audubon Certified PrairieBird Pastures beef, grazed on native Missouri grasses that support birds, soil and water health, and encourage increased biodiversity in agricultural operations.

By utilizing fresh, local ingredients, Claridge and Dryden keep the food on our plates connected with the place we call home, and shine light on the culinary value embedded in conservation efforts across Missouri.

“Every act of cooking reaffirms the astonishing bounty of the Earth – the products of its forests, prairies, fields, rolling hills, mountains, rivers, lakes and oceans,” Dryden explains in the introduction to Cooking Wild in Missouri. “Preparing fresh food not only inspires reverence for nature, but for the farmers who grow it. That reverence, in turn, cultivates consciousness and care in our actions... Furthermore, if you pursue fresh, local and seasonal foods, you’ll inevitably find yourself out in nature.”

Maintaining Missouri’s natural heritage depends on Missourians understanding and appreciating the many ways by which protecting our natural communities provides for us, both in the field, and on our forks.

Join MDC and partners for an evening of conservation and cuisine, 6-9 p.m. on Monday, May 13, at Broadway Brewery, 816 E. Broadway in downtown Columbia. 

This event is free, but space is limited and registration is required by visiting

For more information about this or other Discover Nature events, visit, or contact the MDC Central Regional Office at (573) 815-7900.