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"A gourmet who thinks of calories is like a tart who looks at her watch." - James Beard


Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Corn Radish and Jicama Salad

This is a gorgeous, tasty salad.  I bet it will be even better when corn is in season this summer, but it was a wonderful, colourful dish.

I adapted this recipe from Serious Eats (like just about everything I eat).  I didn't have all the ingredients they call for but this turned out great.   

Here's what you need: 

Saturday, April 27, 2013

The Beer Baron - Road Trip: Finding Good Beer in Wine Country

This guest post is by Matt

While Jen was at the Food Bloggers of Canada Conference, I decided to take a little road trip to the Niagara region to see family and check out the newly emerging craft beer scene. (I admit I also visited Cave Springs Cellars in Jordan, Ontario, but that’s because only a fool passes up the chance to get their CSV or Dolomite Rieslings.)

After meeting their representative at the London Food & Wine Show in January, I had been planning a trip to the Silversmith Brewing Company in Niagara-on-the-Lake. 

Converting a church into a brewery and brewpub is the Holy Grail (pun intended) for beer geeks like me, so I had to see their operation for myself. It was an impressive site:

When I walked in, I was greeted by the following menu:

I kid you not, I clapped and grinned like an idiot when I saw it. Silversmith is best known for their Black Lager and I knew they would have that, but seeing the Russian Imperial Stout – which is my favourite style of beer – on the menu was a happy moment, indeed.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Swiss Chard, Fennel & White Bean Gratin

Hopefully this will be one of the last wintery dishes I have to post before spring brings asparagus, ramps and freshness to my kitchen.  But this hearty side is a great way to combine winter veggies into a healthy, tasty dish.

This recipe comes from Serious Eats but I pretty much halved it. Here's what you need: 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Short & Sweet Sunday - Mexican Hot Chocolate

It's still very cold where I am and spring is taking its time getting to us.  So here's something to warm you up.

There are some combinations that I just love and chocolate and chili is one of them.  We bought this Aztec Drinking Chocolate from ChocoSol at a beer festival in Toronto where they were mixing it with milk stout.  That was delicious, but it's just as good made with plain water.  

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Chicken in Blue Cheese Sauce

This was an easy weeknight meal.  I always forget how a nice sauce can elevate simple, boring protein into something special.

Butternut squash purée was a nice accompaniment.  This recipe came from Clean Eating magazine.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Lentil Salad and Carrot Daikon Salad

Lentil Salad & Carrot Daikon Salad

I made these two salads to serve with grilled lamb kofta and they were a great match.

The lentil salad is from Epicurious. Here's what you need:

1 cup green or brown lentils
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 cup couscous
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large garlic clove
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves
1/4 pound feta

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Lamb Kofta

I've wanted to make kofta for a long time.  It's intriguing.  It's sort of like a little burger or meatloaf grilled on a skewer.  Ground lamb is not easy to find in my local supermarkets but I did find some at my local farmers market last weekend.  I thought it would be delicious with some middle eastern spices and I was right.  You can also use ground beef if that's what you have. 

This recipe comes from Vikram Vij whose Vancouver restaurant I hope to visit one day.  
Here's what you need:

1 pound lean ground lamb
2 hot peppers
1 inch fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic

½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cumin powder
1 tablespoon cilantro leaves, chopped
¼ teaspoon garam masala
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons flour
1 medium onion, finely grated

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Shrimp with Corn Fritters and Lime Crema

This is shockingly delicious and left me wondering why I haven't been making corn fritters every week since I got married.  Matt loves corn but I don't make it that often as a side since I don't really consider it a vegetable.  I always add it to soup and tacos, sometimes to chili, and I love to eat corn on the cob in the summer.  But this is a whole new way for us to enjoy corn.  

This recipe was inspired by April's Clean Eating magazine, but I used Martha Stewart's corn fritter recipe.  One warning about this: it does require a lot of last-minute futzing about.  You can make the fritters in advance and hold them in a 200 degree oven while you prepare the shrimp.  The fritters lose a little crispiness, but it's probably worth it to avoid running around to get it all plated like I did (taking pictures at the same time didn't help).

I'll tell you about the corn fritters first, and then the shrimp.

Corn cakes or corn fritters or corn cakes are essentially pancakes with corn in them.  Martha's recipe uses cornmeal and flour but you can also use masa.  I used quite a lot of corn kernels but you can reduce the amount for a smoother, cake-ier fritter.  Here's what you need:  

Monday, April 8, 2013

Saag Paneer

I don't cook vegetarian dishes too often but this is a great one.  Rich Indian flavours served over basmati rice.  

Here's what you need:

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Pork Chops with Pears and Quinoa

You can't argue with pork and pears together.  This recipe adds quinoa and some goat's cheese for a creamy, tart compliment to the sweetness of the pears.  

Here's what you need:

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Lemon Dill Seafood Linguine

This recipe was inspired by Clean Eating magazine.  They served it without the pasta, but the linguine makes it a hearty meal.  

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Whiskey Brisket Hash

This is my first time cooking brisket and it worked out great!  You have to marinate it for 24 hours though, so be prepared to wait for these results.  

I used my Nordic Ware Pro Cast Traditions 3 quart Dutch Oven to braise the brisket and it worked very well.  Since it is cast aluminium instead of cast iron, it's much lighter to lift out of the oven.   

This recipe came from the wonderful Serious Eats.  Hash is often made from leftover brisket but this brisket is cooked just for the hash and it is so tasty!