Soups and Sides

Fast and Easy – Curried Squash

This is a great dish on its own, with some naan or other flatbread, or as a side to accompany meat, fish or even with a salad. I was going to call it Caribbean squash because of the vibrant colors but I didn’t have any Jamaican Curry Powder – I know, who runs out of Jamaican Curry Powder – shameful. The star of the show is the butternut squash – before you groan, see my notes below – colorful peppers, jalapenos, curry powder and onion – not necessarily in order of quantity. I know! Butternut squash is one of those […]

Fast and Easy – Raw Beet and Herb Salad

As the days get warmer, we want to spend less time in the kitchen. That is unless you like being in the kitchen as much as I do. Regardless of time spent in the kitchen, this is a remarkably cooling salad. Without too much effort, you can have this refreshing crisp salad – make lots so you can have it again the next day. It will keep, as long as you don’t dress the herbs. The most interesting part of this salad – no lettuce – of any kind! It’s an adaptation of Yotam Ottolenghi’s Beet Salad. I used beet […]

Chickpea Bites

This is a wonderfully tasty hors d ‘oeuvre, bursting with flavor in every bite. It’s versatile so you can make it with really any type of bean. I’m using canned chick peas, I like the texture and taste of the canned beans. It’s a personal thing, use whatever you like. It can also be made as a vegetarian burger – but packed with flavor.  You can also add or change up the spices – garlic powder, cayenne pepper – or add chopped raw spinach to the mixture (you already have the food processor out 🙂 ).   My food processor […]

Julia Child’s Provencal Potato Gratin

As you probably know, one of the Chef’s who inspired my love for cooking was Julia Child. Her approach to cooking is what I think I liked best. A Cordon Bleu certified Chef who brought French Cooking to the North American home cook. Whenever I get a chance, I try one of her recipes and they never disappoint. I quite often reference her style in my classes at the Loblaw PC Cooking Schools as well as Longo’s The Loft –and just about any other venue I’m at. Never apologize, don’t take it seriously – how could you not love this […]

By |October 5th, 2016|Food Blogs, Recipes, Soups and Sides, Special Meals, The Blog|Comments Off on Julia Child’s Provencal Potato Gratin

Smoked Duck Breast with Maple Caramelized Onions

I had the opportunity to do a dinner class for some wonderful folks that own King Cole Ducks. Really the dinner at their “Duck School” was open to the public. They have a lovely setup on Warden Road north of Aurora Road in Newmarket. These customers (23 of them) are a mix of new and repeat diners but they share one thing in common – they love duck! King Cole Ducks is a family run business – and I do mean family! In 1951, Jim and Marg Murby along with their son Bob started duck farming. Three generations later, the […]

CNIB Thank You Dinner in Barrie – Indian Spiced Cabbage

I was at the Loblaw’s PC Cooking School in Barrie a few nights ago. It was an incredible evening! Not because of my menu (although it was pretty good 🙂 ) but because of the people attending the event. The dinner, hosted by the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB) Barrie chapter, was to thank their volunteers acting in various capacities – from drivers and administrators to fund raisers and vision mates – to name a few. The most amazing thing for me was that a lot of these volunteers were partially or permanently visually impaired. Yet, they were helping others who […]

Curried Parsnip Soup

Oh so good! Again so easy to make, I’m embarrassed to give you the recipe! I didn’t always like the taste of parsnips (but probably because I’ve only ever had them boiled) until Chef School that is. Then I learned they could be pureed, roasted, pan fried etc. You could add cream or just stock for this soup – but keep it healthy and just use stock, trust me – an abundance of great taste with the richness of a pureed soup. If desired, add about 1/2 cup of 35% cream just before serving. Either way – oh so good! […]

By |January 13th, 2016|Food Blogs, Recipes, Soups and Sides, Special Meals|Comments Off on Curried Parsnip Soup

Goan Shrimp Curry

Goan cooking is a delicate balance of spices that provide complex tastes when combined. Actually Indian cooking – in general, is like this. Until one really understands the nuances in combining spices i.e. the flavor of each spice, you truly cannot cook the food properly. Recipes are just guides, I say this all the time whenever I teach. It’s really technique that’s important. That’s why I often ask anyone willing to teach me something I haven’t done before (or even if I have done it before – there is always a different route one can take to get to a […]

Stuffed Eggplant and Stuffed Zucchini

My friend Otis – from the land down under, put me on to this recipe for stuffed eggplant. It’s actually from a fellow who runs a restaurant and cooking school there. I like this recipe! It’s Indian food but with a few simple ingredients that every kitchen should probably have, but above all I like it for its taste. I made it the first time as the recipe suggests – you know I like to respect the Chef’s version – their vision so to speak. The second time I made it, of course I changed the recipe based on my […]

By |August 29th, 2015|Food Blogs, Mains, Miscellaneous, Recipes, Soups and Sides, The Blog|Comments Off on Stuffed Eggplant and Stuffed Zucchini

Barley, Mushrooms and Caramelized Balsamic Vinegar Onions

Whatever you thought of barley – boring, dull etc., put it out of your head and make this dish. It’s simple really, barley, mushrooms, caramelized onions finished off with balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Could it be a simpler dish?! I’ve been making this as a compliment to some other dishes in my “What’s for Dinner” classes at the PC Cooking Schools this month. The feedback has been overwhelming so I thought I’d share it with you. It’s classic vegetarian but can be served with a protein as a complement. I came up with it as my son asked me […]

By |August 23rd, 2015|Food Blogs, Recipes, Soups and Sides, The Blog, Weeknight Meals|Comments Off on Barley, Mushrooms and Caramelized Balsamic Vinegar Onions