This week, I finally got the chance to meet Top Chef Canada’s Rich Francis. Doing a bit of traveling in Alberta, the chef came down to Calgary to join fellow cheftestant Karine Moulin at her restaurant, Raw Bar, for this past Monday’s viewing party. Francis chatted with a full room of folks about his time on the show, what is was like cooking off against Karine, the other competitors and all of that good stuff.
Rich’s dish from episode 6 has many components and you can get the full breakdown here on FoodNetwork.ca, but to keep things simple, here’s the bright and briny tapenade used to finish his pickerel dish. This tapenade would be great on a variety of grilled meats, so try it out on whatever you happen to be roasting/grilling for dinner this week!
I’m really loving my weekly efforts for the Chopped Canada Mystery Solved blog series on Food Network Canada online. Last fall, I wasn’t spending nearly enough time in my own kitchen cooking, so both this cooking venture and Top Chef Canada: Taking The Challenge Home has got me back right into the groove of slicing, dicing, baking, etc…I’m better for it, as are all of my friends who get to eat the leftovers.
Anyway, here’s some of the great Chopped Canada mystery basket-inspired recipes I’ve come up with lately. If I have to pick one stand out, it’s definitely the maple brined pork chops! Damn!
It’s no secret that condensed milk is sweet, syrupy and intense. The majority of my condensed milk consumption comes from ordering Vietnamese coffees to accompany my many pho lunches in Calgary. You’ll find this milk in lots of desserts like pies, and sauces like dulce de leche. However, years ago, condensed milk came from people’s need of having to transport milk for long periods of time without it spoiling. It was also a ration staple during wartimes as well. The more you know!
Now that it’s getting all snow-melty and sunny outside, I see a lot more barbecued dinners in my future. Whether it’s burgers, hotdogs or some ribs, food just seems to taste better when it’s grilled. This relish is nice, bright and tart. It would go beautifully with some blue cheese on a burger or just dolloped on top of some pork tenderloin. It also only takes 15 minutes to make too, so we’re basically winning at life here.
Yes! Winter is officially over! That being said, I guess it did just blizzard in Calgary, so we’re stuck with some snow here for a little while longer, but I see some shorts, tank tops and patio beers in my not-so-distant future. Forever the optimist…
There’s been a few new restaurants popping up in Calgary over the past three months and here are a few that you should check out, if you haven’t already!
To be honest, I’m not sure the main drag of 17th Avenue necessarily needed one more restaurant but Bensonhurst Pizza Co. is an intriguing enough concept to contend with the regular suspects we already know and love.
Recently opened in the same building as Roosevelt at 9th Street S.W., Bensonhurst may not immediately grab your attention as you pass by, so make sure to follow the smell of freshly made pizza sauce.
Alright, not the prettiest picture, but, in my defence, it was early in the morning and I was having a ‘cook off’ on Breakfast Television with my co-instructor Vincci Tsui and some of our participants. The cook off was a ton of fun and my team ended up making a barley risotto with kale, lemon and roasted chicken. It may not look like much, but it was unanimous with the group (and the TV host) that is tasted great.
Again, not the best capture, but click on the image (or here!) to watch the compilation of clips from our morning on BT Calgary. It was fun cooking in our Calgary Co-op kitchen, but I also got to mention an exciting event that is happening on Friday, May 29th that we’re partnering up with The Calgary Farmers’ Market for. Going to be a good one! Watch the video for some details about it! Risotto recipe below!
It’s hard to believe my ‘Chopped Canada Mystery Solved‘ blog series has already been going for eight weeks. I guess time flies when you’re trying to be creative with regular ingredients (or approachable with strange ones) in the kitchen. From kitchen staples like peanut butter and sriracha to the floral love-it-or-hate-it of rose water, here are the Chopped Canada-related recipes I came up with this month for Food Network Canada online.
- Top Chef Canada Rich Francis’ Tapenade
- Chopped Canada Mystery Solved: March Recipe Round Up
- Cherry and Red Onion Relish
- Avenue Magazine: Restaurant Round Up For The Winter
- Start From Scratch on BT Calgary and a recipe for Barley, Lemon and Tomato Risotto
- Appetizers & Co.
- Calgary & Area
- Magazine Highlights
- Season 2
- Season 3
- Something Sweet
- Top Chef Canada: Taking The Challenge Home
- United States