MasterChef Canada contestant Danielle Cardozo (left) will face off against Top Chef Canada’s Nicole Gomes and Iron Chef Japan’s Michael Noble in Battle Pancake during the Calgary Stampede this July.

MasterChef Canada contestant Danielle Cardozo (left) will face off against Top Chef Canada’s Nicole Gomes and Iron Chef Japan’s Michael Noble in Battle Pancake during the Calgary Stampede this July.

When pancakes and bikinis collide

Cranbrook’s Danielle Cardozo will raise money for Special Olympics at a Stampede celebrity cookoff

Cranbrook MasterChef Canada contestant Danielle Cardozo is back in the saddle, competing in a celebrity pancake cookoff during Calgary Stampede.

On July 5, Cardozo will face off against Nicole Gomes from Top Chef Canada, and Michael Noble from Iron Chef Japan in a pancake battle of epic proportions.

Battle Pancake will see each of the three reality television competitors prepare a signature pancake and handmade sausage, which will then be served to a crowd of 500 people during Stampede in Calgary.

It’s part of larger event called Bikini Espy, a fundraiser for Special Olympics Calgary.

A Calgary fashion boutique called the Espy Experience hosts the fundraiser during Stampede each year. Women of all ages and sizes are invited to line up outside the store in their bikinis and cowboy boots. With a donation to Special Olympics Calgary, they are each given a free outfit chosen by a fashion stylist. In 2013, the event raised more than $35,000.

“It is definitely a unique event, and it’s even a little controversial. But the bottom line is that it’s successful at raising funds for a great cause, and that it why I have gotten involved,” said Cardozo.

She became involved in the fundraiser when she first met Espy owner Megan Szanik in Calgary, soon after Cardozo was eliminated from MasterChef Canada’s top eight.

“We were dining at Michael Noble’s restaurant, who just happens to know Megan Szanik, owner of Espy Experience. A conversation arose about Bikini Espy; one of my friends suggested that I should get involved with it, and it all snowballed from there. Megan came up with the genius idea of Battle Pancake. It was really just a case of being in the right place at the right time, which lately seems to be a trend in my life.”

Cardozo’s two competitors each have their own reality TV experiences. Nicole Gomes placed third and was the last woman standing in Top Chef Canada’s third season.

“She is incredibly talented, having apprenticed all over Europe and has worked some high ranking positions at some of the best restaurants in Canada,” said Cardozo.

Michael Noble competed in Iron Chef Japan against Iron Chef Morimoto, losing out by barely two points.

“For anyone who watches the show, they know it’s a big deal to get that close,” said Cardozo.

For Battle Pancake, the competitors will prepare a pancake breakfast for the bikini-clad women and others gathered at the event, who will ultimately decide which dish wins the day.

“Megan told myself, Gomes and Noble that our involvement has brought even more media attention to the event. That feels great and I hope it results in more money being raised. I am extremely proud to be a part of this event, and it has even inspired me to start thinking about how we can bring a great event like this to Cranbrook,” said Cardozo.

The chefs won’t be wearing bikinis, though Cardozo said she’d do it anyway. The event is sponsored by Mavi Jeans, which will provide outfits and custom denim aprons for the chefs.

“I will be totally honest: if the event required us to sport a bikini, I’d still be game,” said Cardozo.

Just Posted

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Over 5K jabbed at Interior Health mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics

The clinics have made stops in more than 40 communities since launching last week

Kimberley residents were treated to the first Farmers' Market of the season, and the feeling of a return to normalcy. Paul Rodgers photos.
WATCH: Kimberley’s first Farmers’ Market of the season

Kimberley residents enjoyed the first Farmers’ Market of the year on Thursday,… Continue reading

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interior Health COVID-19 cases falling slower than the rest of B.C.

More than a third of provincial cases announced Thursday came from the Interior

Students at Creston Valley Secondary School put together an art installation of a replica residential school room. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Creston students create art installation of residential school room

The replica was decorated with a small bed, school uniform, and notes written with pleas for help

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Bruce Springsteen performs at the 13th annual Stand Up For Heroes benefit concert in support of the Bob Woodruff Foundation in New York on Nov. 4, 2019. (Greg Allen/Invision/AP)
‘Springsteen on Broadway’ clears way for AstraZeneca recipients to attend show

B.C. mayor David Screech who received his second AstraZeneca dose last week can now attend the show

New research suggests wolves can be steered away from the endangered caribou herds they prey on by making the man-made trails they use to hunt harder to move along. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Culling cutlines, not B.C. wolves, key to preserving caribou herds: researcher

The government has turned to killing hundreds of wolves in an effort to keep caribou around

Gary Abbott (left) and Louis De Jaeger were two of the organizers for the 2014 Spirit of the People Powwow in Chilliwack. Monday, June 21, 2021 is Indigenous Peoples Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of June 20 to 26

Indigenous Peoples Day, Take Your Dog to Work Day, Onion Rings Day all coming up this week

Gwen Spencer Hethey with her uncle and mentor Major Frederick Richardson. (Courtesy of Greater Victoria Sports Hall of Fame)
‘She was a killer’: The B.C. woman who pioneered female sharpshooting

Gwen Spencer Hethey made military men ‘look like turkeys’ says her son

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Central Okanagan Grade 12 grads are set to get $500 each after a more than $1 million donation from a Kelowna couple. (File photo)
B.C. couple donating $500 to every Grade 12 student in the Okanagan

Anonymous donors identified as Kelowna entrepreneurs Lance and Tammy Torgerson

Rita Coolidge played the main stage at Vancouver Island Musicfest in 2017. (Black Press file photo)
This year’s Vancouver Island MusicFest to virtually showcase beauty of Comox Valley

Returning July 9 through 11 with more than 25 hours of music performances

British Columbia’s premier says he’s received a second dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. (Twitter/John Horgan)
B.C. premier gets 2nd dose of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

John Horgan shared a photo of himself on social media Friday afternoon holding a completed vaccination card

Most Read