Monday, February 28, 2011

Thanks for braving the cold wet slushy snow...

...and coming out to the Blim Market at Heritage Hall yesterday.  And a very special thank you to everyone who took time to compliment the Piadina Pasties they enjoyed for lunch; it means a lot.

I look forward to seeing you all again next month, March 27th.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Crust at Blim Market Feb 27, 2011

With great sadness, I have to let you know that due to faulty scales the chestnut bread will not be available.

I'm changing my name!
Come and enjoy Crust on Main Street at 15th:

Griddle Pasties: Piadina, an Italian flat bread, filled with a choice of 3 fillings:
- curried garbanzo beans, feta and peas
- leek and cashew pate with spinach
- ricotta cheese with capers, olives, lemon, chili and tomato

Chestnut Bread baked with caramelized onion and garlic, rosemary and cherry tomato (gluten free)

This menu is subject to amendment.

I look forward to seeing you for lunch and a chat!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

quick recipe #6 Hearty Halibut Soup with Sage and Rapini

serves 2

Cut to small dice 2 medium potatoes, 1 small rutabaga (swede), 1 medium carrot, 1 stick of celery, 1/2 medium onion.
Warm 1 tbsp olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the carrot, celery & onion and cook until onion starts to soften. Stir in the diced potatoes and rutabaga to coat with oil.
Add 4 cups chicken stock, a good pinch of salt and a few twists of white pepper and bring to a simmer.
Meanwhile, chop 1 cup rapini and set aside.
Remove skin from the halibut.
Use wild halibut if it is available, ask the fishmonger to cut a piece large enough to serve two people.
Cut the halibut into 1/2 inch chunks and set aside.
When the vegetables are al dente put 1/3 of vegetables and stock in a food processor, add more white pepper to suit your taste and process until smooth.
Add the fish and rapini to the saucepan and allow to cook over gentle heat.
When the fish is cooked through return the processed vegetables to the saucepan and stir to combine. Allow to warm.
Finely chop enough fresh sage to give 1 tbsp.
Divide the soup between 2 large bowls. Top each soup with a large spoonful of sour cream, preferably fat free, and sprinkle the soup with the finely chopped sage.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

quick recipe #5 Grains braised with Horseradish, Aged Sirloin Steak, Brussels

Yesterday, I took a trip to Big Lou's Butcher Shop It's a great step back in time little corner shop owned by the chefs behind Two Chef's and a Table on the next block, but it is very much of now selling primarily local and naturally raised meats.

I came out with a beautiful aged sirloin steak from Pemberton Farms. Walking back home I had to decide my dinner. Recently, I've been trying to incorporate more grains into the meals I cook, inspired in part by Mark Bittman's The Food Matter's Cookbook. So I made a simple dinner around the steak with food I already had at home. Horseradish is a traditional condiment for beef and works very well as a seasoning for the grains:

This recipe serves one
Wash and season the steak with a little sea salt and black pepper. Set aside.

Combine equal parts spelt, oat and barley flakes to a total of 1/2 cup.  Put in a saucepan, add half a stick of celery and 4 cloves garlic both finely chopped, a pinch of sea salt and black pepper to taste.  Stir in 2 cups of chicken stock.  This will be a wet creamy porridge rather than a thick porridge. Bring to a gentle simmer over medium heat.

Wash, trim and halve 5 brussels sprouts. Preferably steam over simmering grains. If you don't have a steamer, boil in enough water to half cover. They are done when tender but still slightly firm, keep warm.

When the grains have softened and released their starch into the stock to make it creamy stir in 1 generous tbsp of hot horseradish sauce. However, this should be to your taste so add a little then taste and add more until you have it to suit yourself. Allow to simmer a little longer for the flavours to develop.

Warm a heavy skillet, preferably cast iron, but any pan will do. When very hot lay the seasoned steak in the centre of the pan. Using tongs turn the steak very quickly to sear all sides, including the fat.  For medium cook for 4-5 minutes total.

Spoon the grains onto a plate with the brussels on one side and the steak nestled on top. Well balanced and delicious!

I think these grains would also work well with dry seared salmon.

Monday, February 7, 2011

quick recipe #4 Chicken and Gai Lan in Lemon & Ginger on Noodles with Spicy Hoisin Glazed Green Beans and Tofu

Quantities are for two.

1. Grate and squeeze the juice from a two inch piece of ginger. Mix with the juice squeezed from 1 lemon and 1tsp mirin or sugar.
2. Cut two organic chicken breasts into bite size pieces and mix in with the juices. Add a few twists of white pepper and set aside to marinate.
3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the noodles.
4. Warm 1.5 tbsp sunflower oil and 1/2 tbsp sesame oil in a frying pan. Cut half a block of medium firm organic tofu into 1 inch cubes and add to the warm oil. Cook until starts to turn gold, stirring and turning frequently to avoid sticking.
5. Add the chicken and all the marinade to another pan and bring to a gentle simmer and allow to poach.
6. Trim a large handful of green beans. Set aside.
7. Trim 8 pieces of gai lan and chop into 1 inch pieces. Set aside.
8. Grate 4 large cloves of garlic. Set aside.
9. Combine 1 tbsp hoisin sauce, 2 tsp sambal oelek, 1 tbsp soy sauce. Set aside.
10. When the tofu is staring to colour add the green beans and toss in the oil. Add the hoisin mixture and bring to a simmer and allow to reduce to a glaze.
11. When the chicken is almost cooked stir in the gai lan, garlic and a splash of soy sauce.  Raise the heat a little and allow the gai lan to cook for a few minutes and the marinade to reduce slightly.
12. When both chicken and tofu are cooked remove from heat and put noodles in the pot of boiling water and cook for about 3 minutes or according to the instructions.
13. Strain the noodles and place on a serving dish. Top with the chicken and gai lan and all the sauce. Place the tofu and beans on a separate plate and serve along side the chicken and noodles.