1 TBSP butter
1 clove garlic (minced)
2 cups radishes (trimmed and halved)
1 1/2 cups fresh green beans (trimmed)
1 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP brown sugar
1 TBSP sriracha
2 TSP lemon juice
2 TSP lemon zest
1/3 cup fresh basil (loosely chopped or torn)
salt and pepper
I have been somewhat of a delinquent lately. Between Stampede shenanigans, a house boating trip and long weekend in Saskatoon, my daily fruit and veggie intake had taken a little dip. Hence, green beans and radishes to the rescue. Not really sure why, but my love of cooked radishes continues to grow stronger with each passing week. I’m pretty sure that the only thing I love more than radishes right now is Dawson’s Creek.
4 beef tenderloins
2 garlic cloves (chopped)
2 TSP freshly grated ginger
1 cup red wine
2 TBSP sirarcha
1 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP rice wine vinegar
1 TSP sugar
salt and pepper
5 cups chicken stock
1 13.5oz can coconut milk
1 lemongrass stalk (segmented into 2″ pieces)
1TSP freshly grated ginger
1 TSP chili flakes
1 yellow onion (finely chopped)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1 cup green onions (finely chopped)
2 cups arborio rice (uncooked)
4 pieces Laughing Cow cheese (random, I know…In lieu, a 1/4 cup of cream cheese will do!)
salt and pepper
grape seed oil
I recently dined at Mercato here in Calgary for the first time ever. I know, I’m a terrible, terrible foodie. If you’ve eaten there, you know their red meat claim to fame is the ‘Bistecca’ a steak of epic proportions served with prosciutto-wrapped asparagus of equal delicious monstrosity. Perhaps I’ll share a picture of the dish at the bottom of the post (‘perhaps’ = ‘will’). Needless to say, steak has been the object of my affection ever since. Thus, this dinner recipe was born.
Before starting on the risotto, you’ll need to marinate the steaks for a few hours (at least two). Place all of the steak ingredients into a large ziploc bag, sprinkle with salt and pepper, seal and swish the bag around a few times to mix the marinade nicely. Pop the bag of steaks into the fridge for the next while. In the meantime, watch an episode of Dawson’s Creek.
When it’s getting closer to dinner time, you can start preparing the risotto. Mix the first 5 ingredients together in a medium-sized pot. Turn to medium-high heat and let cook until the liquid is just about to boil. Reduce to low heat to stay hot. Next, in a large pan on medium-high heat, cook down the onions and garlic in some olive oil for 5 minutes. Add the chopped green onions and rice to the pan, give everything a good stir and let cook for another 3-4 minutes.
At this point, start preheating your oven to 400 degrees (for finishing the steaks).
Now, start adding the hot liquid to the pan, ladle by ladle. Each time you add some liquid, stir occasionally until the rice has just about absorbed all of it, then add some more. Repeat until all of the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is al dente, 20 minutes or so. Finally, add your Laughing Cow cheese (just because you had some in the fridge) and stir until it’s melted away into the risotto. Finish with some salt and pepper and reduce to low heat to stay warm while you cook the steaks.
Now to sear! Place a medium-sized pan (cast iron if you have one) on the stove with a bit of grape seed oil, and turn to high heat. Remove the steaks from their marinade and add to the hot pan. Let them cook for approximately 2-3 minutes on each side, then pop into the preheated oven for 6-8 minutes for a medium-rare cut. Remove and let sit for a few minutes on your cooking board before slicing.
When you’re ready to serve, portion out the risotto onto four plates followed by the (now) sliced steak. Everyone will definitely be full after this!
Total cook time…40 min (not including marinade time)
2 yellow onions (chopped)
3 cloves garlic
2 TSP white sugar
1/4 cup pineapple juice
5 parsnips (peeled, 1″ chopped, approximately 3 cups)
1 13.5oz can coconut milk
1 lemon grass stalk (segmented)
1 3″ ginger root (halved)
2 cups chicken stock (or veggie to keep vegan)
1 TBSP white wine vinegar
1 lime (zest and juice)
salt and pepper
1 bunch cilantro (loosely chopped)
1 lemon (zest and juice)
1/2 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
As far as root vegetables go, parsnips are overlooked, underused and, let’s not beat around the bush here, forgotten. Well…similar Occupy Calgary protesters, I decided to let parsnips occupy my kitchen this week. However, instead of pitching tents, making signs and refusing to leave
Olympic Plaza, err….my house…They decided to jump into a soup pot! Now, that was an easy fix!
Jokes aside, this soup puts parsnips in the much-deserved limelight. Next time you’re at the grocery store, I want you to look carrots in the eye and say: ‘Sorry carrots, I’m with parsnips now.’ Love hurts.
Place the chopped onions and garlic into a medium-sized pot. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle in the sugar, stir and let cook on medium-high heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Now, pour in the pineapple juice and let the mixture continue to cook until the liquid has reduced by half, about another 5 minutes. Toss in (recklessly) the parsnips, stir and let cook for (you guessed it!) another five minutes.
Next, add the chicken stock, coconut milk, lemon grass, ginger, vinegar and lime to the pot. Reduce to medium heat and let simmer for 25 minutes. Be sure to leave the lemon grass and ginger in large chunks, as you will need to pull them out prior to pureeing the soup!
In the simmering interim, we can quickly make the ‘drizzle’ (doesn’t that sound so fancy?). Place ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth. This is more for looks and also a bit of tang for the soup, but add some salt and pepper to taste, just to round things out. Pour the vibrant green liquid into a small bowl and set aside for now.
Once the soup has simmered for the appropriate length of time, remove the chunks of ginger and the lemon grass stalks. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until it has a velvety smooth texture. Barring the immersion blender, pour the soup into a blender or food processor to get the job done. Return the smooth soup to the pot, have a taste, salt and pepper it as needed, then let it sit on low heat until you’re ready to serve.
When it’s time to dish it out, ladle out the soup and top with some of the cilantro drizzle. I feel as though some simple seared scalloped would go well with this soup, so maybe give that a whirl if you’re feeling ambitious.
Total cook time…45 min
4 cups steeped lapsang souchong tea
2 cups beef broth (or veggie to stay vegan)
3 garlic cloves (whole)
1/2 cup miso paste
zest of 1 lemon
1 TBSP fresh lemon juice
1 TBSP freshly grated ginger
2 TSP wasabi paste
1 TSP rice wine vinegar
1 cup fresh oyster mushrooms (chopped)
1 cup soft tofu (1/2″ cubed)
1/2 cup green onions (finely chopped)
ground black pepper
Now, before you say: ‘This sounds weird’, think of the weirdest thing you’ve ever done. See…not so weird anymore, right? Lapsang Souchong is a strong, smokey black tea. It almost has a hickory kind of flavour to it. So, maybe just consider this soup a ‘miso meets west’ kind of combination. It’s my favourite tea, so I’m a tad biased, but, such is life!
Place the steeped tea, broth, and garlic cloves into a medium-sized pot and bring to a simmer on the stove. Reduce to low heat and let bubble away, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Then, add the miso paste and stir until it has dissolved into the broth. Next, add the zest, lemon juice, ginger, wasabi, and vinegar. Let the pot return to a simmer, about 3 minutes, before adding the oyster mushrooms and soft tofu.
Still on low heat, let the soup cook for another 10 minutes so that the oyster mushrooms cook through. Take a quick taste, add some black pepper if needed. The miso paste should be plenty salty enough, so I doubt you’ll need to add any salt. Finally, right before ladling out the soup, toss in the chopped green onions.
This soup totally rocks for anyone with a cold. Great for clearing the sinus’!
Total cook time…20 min
2 mandarin oranges
2 cloves garlic
2 TBSP honey
1 TSP fish sauce
2 TSP sambal oelek (chili paste)
Pork & Stuffing:
4 pork chops
1 head baby bok choy
1/2 cup water chestnuts
2 green onion stalks
2 TSP sesame oil
salt & pepper
After I made this dish for dinner the other night I had a bit of a ‘this is something my mom would make for supper’ kind of moment. That being said…I had to ask myself: Am I turning into my mother? Well, who’s to know? So, before I make that transition, let’s all enjoy some tasty pork chops and not bring up the transformation at hand…
Start things off by preheating your oven to 425 degrees. Next, juice the oranges and mince the garlic. Combine the juice and garlic with the remaining glaze ingredients in a small bowl. Whisk until the honey dissolves and everything is nicely combined. Finish with some ground black pepper. Set aside for now.
For the pork chop stuffing all you need to do is quickly chop up the bok choy, water chestnuts, and green onions. Place the items into a bowl, add the sesame oil and a bit of salt & pepper, then toss a few times to evenly coat. Set aside as well.
Now we’re ready to stuff and glaze….Butterfly the pork chops (i.e. slice in halfway length-wise, but stop before cutting through completely so that the chop opens up like a book). Add a small handful of stuffing to each opened pork chop along with a tea spoon of the glaze mixture. Now, fold over the side of the meat to close the pork chop up. Tie each chop tightly with a couple pieces of string and place into a prepared, medium-sized baking tray. Brush a generous amount of glaze onto each pork chop then cover with tin foil and place into your preheated oven. After roasting for 10 minutes, remove foil, apply remaining glaze and let cook for another 10 minutes.
Best served with some tasty green vegetables. My solid go-to guy is broccoli.
Enjoy! (and don’t eat the strings…)
Total cook time…30 min
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