Archive | September, 2011

Tomatoes and One Zucchini – Garden Summary!

30 Sep

As the growing season is coming to a close, I thought I’d update everyone on my garden project!

Here are some notes about things that worked and things that weren’t so successful:

  • Mesclun greens – I scattered seeds in three of the squares in my square-foot garden. They grew really well and provided fresh baby greens for about 6-8 weeks. They were delicious in my Garden Salad with Edible Flowers.
  • Butter lettuce – Again, I scattered these and let them come up. I picked a few of the baby greens and decided to let some grow into larger lettuces. Once they started to grow larger, if they didn’t have enough space, they just grew upwards. Next year, I’ll plant them a little farther apart so they have room to spread out and get big.
  • Kale – I was given some kale seedlings that have done really well. Next year I’ll plant way more!
  • Tomatoes – I bought the biggest plants I could find at Sunnyside (I think they were about 20″ already) and they have exploded. We’ve been picking the smaller, grape-tomato size for at least 4 weeks. The larger beefsteaks have been coming ripe for about 2 weeks and I’m starting to get a large stock of them that I’ll probably make into salsa.

Continue reading

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Edamame, Arame and Sweet Potato Salad

27 Sep

I made this delicious salad for the most recent Monday Night Supper Club – potluck edition. It’s another fast, easy recipe (my favourite kind) that always impresses.


Edamame, Arame and Sweet Potato Salad:

1 cup arame, soaked for 30 minutes and rinsed
2 cups sweet potato, cut into 1/2″ cubes and steamed
1 cup edamame, boiled in salted water for 3 minutes
1 green onion, sliced on the bias
2″ daikon radish, grated
1 Tbsp sesame seeds, toasted

Dressing:
2 Tbsps sesame oil
2 Tbsps tamari
5 Tbsps rice wine vinegar
2 Tbsps ginger, freshly grated
3 Tbsps maple syrup
Pinch of cinnamon or five-spice powder


Directions:
Prepare the dressing in a measuring cup or jar. Mix or shake well.

Drain Arame (seaweed) in a colander and squeeze out extra water. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and let sit for at least 1 hour, for all the flavours to incorporate.

Can be refrigerated for up to 5 days.

Enjoy!
Jacinthe

Crabapple Sauce

21 Sep

There’s a very large crabapple tree in my backyard that produces beautiful red apples in September.Usually, the apples fall to the ground creating a mess that attracts wasp, but this year I broke out the extension ladder and picked about 25 pounds of fruit. Almost getting stuck on my garage roof aside, picking my own tree and turning into preserves that I’ll use over the next several months has been very satisfying!

I use applesauce quite a bit for baking, so I thought “why not make crabapple sauce?” I couldn’t find any recipes specifically using crabapples so I experimented a little and created my own.

Crabapples are very high in pectin which resulted in using much more water than regular applesauce recipes call for. I also wanted to make unsweetened sauce, but after tasting my first batch, I decided it’s more palatable to add a sweetener.

By the third batch I had the technique down; it turned out so well, I’m tempted to risk getting stuck on the garage again to pick more apples and make more sauce. This will definitely be something I make in future preserving seasons. Continue reading

Grilled Salmon with Cilantro-Citrus Sauce and Coconut-Lime Rice

13 Sep

I was rooting around in the fridge for lunch the other day and came across a pair of salmon steaks that needed to be cooked off. It was a beautiful day so I cranked up the BBQ. A little experimenting resulted in this delicious cilantro-citrus sauce that goes well with most light fish and even shrimp.

Grilled Salmon with Cilantro-Citrus Sauce and Coconut-Lime Rice:

4 – 6oz salmon steaks
1 zucchini, cut into 1/2″ slices on the bias

Drizzle the salmon steaks with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss zucchini is a bowl with olive oil, salt and pepper. With BBQ on high, sear salmon for 2-3 minutes, or until it doesn’t stick to the grill. Grill zucchini at the same time. Flip and sear second side. Reduce heat to medium/low/medium and cook until salmon is just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Continue reading

Fruit Pies and Pie Crust – deconstructed.

9 Sep

Here’s the latest Om Cooking article from Bodhi Tree’s September 2011 Newsletter.

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September has always meant new beginnings to me. There’s something about the fall air, the leaves turning and the back to school signs that signal the turning of another year, even more so than our calendar new year in January. The city is starting to bustle again and you begin to notice fresh haircuts, new outfits, and a renewed sense of determination to get down to business. You yourself may be getting back into your daily routine, starting a new job, or going back to school.

Changes to our familiar routine can sometimes be uncomfortable. During these times it’s good to remember the practice of non-attachment that we learn in yoga class. Take deep breaths, take everything in stride and remember that at many points in our lives, we started new; from our first breath, our first step, our first day of school, first yoga class, first job…the list could go on. Especially when we were young, our parents were there with open arms to comfort us when new experiences overwhelmed us. Now, those comforts could be a hug from a good friend, our yoga practice, exercise, or any number of other things.

To me, the ultimate comfort food is pie. If you’re a pie lover already, this recipe’s for you. If not, this might become the quintessential dessert to make when you want something familiar. Try combining apples with cranberries, rhubarb, or other berries for something a little different. Continue reading

Cooking from Scratch!

5 Sep

I’m super excited to be teaching for Start From Scratch this September. It’s been out there for a little while, but thought I’d post about it here too.

Start From Scratch is a cooking initiative for Calgary university students. It aims to illuminate how simple, cost effective and healthy cooking can be compared to boxed/prepared products. The program runs for 10 weeks (Tuesday class start September 27, 2011; Thursday classes start September 29, 2011) and is completely free thanks to some very generous sponsors.

Here’s a little bit about what we’ll be doing each week:

Week 1: Breaking The Ice

Pastas, sauces and lasagna…because we’ve got to start somewhere, right? Starting with basic pasta and then going to the next level. Kind of like Super Mario.

Week 2: Good Morning Sunshine!

Quit skipping breakfast! Quick morning snacks to grab on the way out the door so you can stay awake in that 9 a.m. chemistry class. Aviv Fried, better known as The Sidewalk Citizen Baker, will be here to bake some great stuff with us.

Week 3: Couch Change Classics

We’re generally pretty budget friendly here at Start From Scratch, but these to-go recipes are for those ‘rummaging in the couch for spare change’ kind of times. Hey, we’ve all been there! You’ll learn how to stretch your dollars without sacrificing taste.

Week 4: This Little Piggy…Came From The Local Market

Do we smell a field trip to the farmers’ market? Yes, yes we do. We’ll be heading over to the Calgary Farmers’ Market to get inspired about sourcing, and utilizing, ingredients from local suppliers. Amanda Middleton from Spragg’s Meat Shop will be coming by the class as well for a butchering demo! Let’s get chopping! Continue reading

Garlic Dill Pickles

2 Sep

I’ve ventured into the world of canning this year and for my first endeavor I chose pickles. Armed with lots of research from my mom’s preserving books from the 70’s and several websites, including Well Preserved. I had the pleasure of meeting Joel and Dana when I had a pie stand at the Dufferin Grove Farmers’ Market in Toronto a few years ago. They have a plethora of preserving tips and recipes on the website and their Facebook page has cultivated a preserving community rich with advice and ideas. I settled on their Quick Dill Pickle recipe with a few modifications. Continue reading