Chipotle, Cranberry and Walnut Romesco Sauce

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Chipotle romesco sauce

When it’s prime summer weather and you’ve got a patio with a barbecue, there is no excuse not to be outside grilling up more than a few meals throughout the week and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing lately.

Romesco sauce is amazing with grilled vegetables. So, the other night I bought a pile of vegetables (scallions, cauliflower, tomatoes and some zucchini), invited some friends over and ate to our hearts’ stomachs’ content. A nice, healthy dinner in the middle of The Calgary Stampede – which, I assure you, most Calgarians can attest is a rarity – so my mother should be quite proud.

This spin on romesco is a little on the spicy side. If you’re not a fan of heat, add-in less of the chipotle and a bit more roasted red peppers for a sauce that’s more mellow with just a touch of that sweet and spicy smokiness.

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The Kenwood Cooking Chef and Vodka, Apple and Cranberry Granita

Apple cranberry granita

Well, it finally feels like summer is here. I mean, that’s what three whole days in a row without rain has got to mean, right? When it’s sunny outside, everyone likes a chill dessert –  with a little bit of booze in it too. So, time to make some granita that’s a nice, vibrant red for Canada Day. How patriotic!

Kenwood Cooking Chef

I’ve had The Kenwood Cooking Chef now for about two months and am still enamoured with the cooking abilities of this superhero mixer. Last time I wrote about it, I had it cook me up some caramelized onions and since then, have used it for a variety of berry compotes, curds simple syrups and more. Since it uses induction to heat the base of the mixing bowl, I find it gets the job done quickly with whatever I’m tossing in there.

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Swerve Calgary – Behind The Line: Chef Recipe Highlights For The Spring

Chris Shaften Chef

I got a little sidetracked over the winter and spring and forgot to round-up the great recipes from different chefs I’ve chatted with in my ‘Behind The Line‘ column for Swerve since the new year. From talking with my pal, Chris Shaften (pictured) about moving to Kelowna to open Krafty Kitchen and Bar, to Chef Rogelio Herrera on the connection between social media and short attention spans in young chefs, there is always something interesting that comes up in conversation.

Aside from the candid talks, here are some of the recipes that Calgary chefs have shared with me over the past few months.

Ginger Pickled Plums

Chef Chris Shaften’s Ginger Pickled Plums

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Lobster, Red Pepper and Fennel Bisque

Lobster Red Pepper Bisque

Even though it’s getting warmer and warmer out, I still find a good quality bowl of soup still hits the spot. Besides, who are we kidding here? There are still plenty of rainy days in June!

The bisque recipe here is nice and simple, but when you’re working with lobster (or essence of lobster in this case), you don’t want to overpower its distinct flavour with a pile of other ingredients.

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Chopped Canada Mystery Solved: May Recipe Round Up

Pickled quail eggs

We’re in the home stretch now with Chopped Canada Mystery Solved, as the first season of the series comes to a close in a few weeks. From pickling quail eggs to cooking with instant coffee (definitely not my favourite thing to do), here are all of the dishes that we came up with this month on FoodNetwork.ca!

And, if you haven’t checked out the site this week yet, you’ll notice they’ve done a massive redesign. Looking sexier than ever, guys!

Salmon Salad

Candied Salmon, Quail Eggs and Butter Leaf Salad

Quail eggs are used more for their appearance than they are for taste. Their speckled exterior, with colours ranging from light brown to blue, are quite beautiful. After you’ve cooked some up, whether they’re simply fried sunny-side up, or boiled like in my recipe below, you can’t help but look at the little guys and think, ‘Aw, cute!.’

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The Kenwood Cooking Chef and Caramelized Onion Dip

Caramelized Onion Dip

Don’t get me wrong, I definitely don’t endorse the regular consumption of potato chips, but everything in moderation is the general mantra in my life, so indulging in a handful of chips once and awhile – while cheering for The Montreal Canadiens, perhaps? – is nothing to be ashamed of.

What is to be ashamed of, however is that awful from-a-soup-packet onion dip that we’ve all been served so too many times at someone else’s house. So, let’s upgrade the classic chip accompaniment and learn to fall in love with it again, shall we?

Kenwood Cooking Chef

A few weeks ago, I received The Kenwood Cooking Chef to play around with in my kitchen. At first glance, it looks like a mixer, which is true, I guess, but the main thing that really intrigued me about the piece of equipment was the fact that it has an induction burner build until the mixing bowl base. If you’re not on the up-and-up with culinary term-age, that means that this mixer can cook as it turns. Pretty nifty!

In addition to its heat capabilities, the top of the machine can also flip up making room to attach a blender and a food processor. I’m pretty sure this thing can fly, but I just haven’t figured out how to make that happen quite yet.

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