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Local chef revitalizes indigenous foods across U.S. and Mexico

Chef Sean Sherman aims to bring back a sense of Native American cuisine to today’s world. He joins us at the State Fair to discuss authentic Minnesota cuisine.

ST PAUL, Minn. — Chef Sean Sherman has been cooking across the US and Mexico over the past 30 years, and has become renowned nationally and internationally in the culinary movement of indigenous foods.

Sherman says his main focus has been on the revitalization and evolution of indigenous food systems throughout North America. Chef Sean has studied extensively on his own to determine the foundations of these food systems to gain a full understanding of bringing back a sense of Native American cuisine to today’s world.

In 2014, he opened The Sioux Chef as a caterer and food educator in the Minneapolis/Saint Paul area. He and his business partner Dana Thompson also designed and opened the Tatanka Truck, which featured pre-contact foods of the Dakota and Minnesota territories.

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In October 2017, Sean was able to perform the first decolonized dinner at the James Beard House in Manhattan along with his team. 

His first book, The Sioux Chef’s Indigenous Kitchen was awarded the James Beard medal for Best American Cookbook for 2018 and was chosen as one of the top ten cookbooks of 2017 by the LA Times, San Francisco Chronicle and Smithsonian Magazine. 

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This year, Chef Sean was selected as a Bush Fellow, as well as receiving the 2019 Leadership Award by the James Beard Foundation. The Sioux Chef team of twelve people continues with their mission to help educate and make indigenous foods more accessible to as many communities as possible through the recently founded nonprofit North American Traditional Indigenous Food Systems (NATIFS). Learn more on their website

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