TV host’s favourite dishes shift as weather changes

What’s Cooking host Martin Champoux takes part in a yearly chili contest.


Martin Champoux is the host of W Network’s What’s Cooking. In each of the 13 episodes, Martin demonstrates simple, delicious and easy-to-prepare recipes. The French version of What’s Cooking is the top cooking show in Quebec.

Q: What is your fondest memory from your family kitchen?

A: The oatmeal cookies my mom used to bake. When I got home from school she’d make a batch. I did my homework in a snap so I could eat them.

Q: What kitchen aromas bring back fond memories?

A: Whenever someone makes a spaghetti sauce, it reminds me of my father’s. I think his recipe is the best in the world!

Q: What is your favourite food to cook?

A: It varies depending on the season. I love to cook fish in the summer, veggies during the fall harvest and heartier meals like roasts and braised meats in the winter.

Q: How did the first meal you ever prepared turn out?

A: I tried something fancy for a special dinner with friends. It was “lapin a la moutarde” (rabbit with mustard). I was so nervous that I forgot to prepare side dishes.

Q: What kitchen gadget can you not live without?

A: Quality knives. I like to keep them in pristine condition, always as sharp as possible.

Q: Is there a cultural dish that you prepare which ties into an event?

A: Every year, we get together with friends and we hold a chili contest. We each cook our own personal recipe and judge each other. Of course, year after year, we’re all winners!

Marcy Cornblum is a freelance journalist. After 25 years of celebrity-filled adventures, she is using her experiences to enlighten others in understanding the media. Reach her at

Lemon shrimp pasta salad


  • 5 cups of bow-tie pasta, uncooked

  • 1 lb. fresh asparagus spears, cut into 2-inch lengths

  • ¾ cup Kraft Calorie-Wise Zesty Italian Dressing

  • 1 tsp. dried oregano leaves

  • 1 tsp. grated lemon peel

  • 1 lb. cooked large shrimp (20-25)

  • 1 cup halved or quartered cherry tomatoes

  • 2 cups Kraft Double Cheddar Shredded Cheese Light — made with 2% milk


Cook pasta as directed on package, adding asparagus to the cooking water for the last 3 minutes of the pasta cooking time; drain. Rinse with cold water; drain well. Mix dressing, oregano and lemon peel. Place pasta mixture in large bowl. Add dressing mixture, shrimp, tomatoes, and cheese; mix lightly.

Serve immediately for up to 12 people. Or, cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

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