With a double elimination in the second episode and some, um, tension between Caity and Ruth, I thought it might be less dramatic in my kitchen for this second round of recreating if I didn’t do it alongside someone else. And, especially not anyone named Caity! Kidding…sort of…
Anyway, as per my usual weekly routine, I swung by The Calgary Farmers’ Market to grab some ingredients for the dish I was recreating. For a second week in a row, I was (happily) assigned to reimagine a dish by Calgary’s Nicole Gomes, a plate Arctic Char with Tomato Emulsion and Chorizo that she created in episode two with Rory White. In lieu of making my own chorizo at home, I settled for some great sausages from the Spragg’s Meat Shop, as well as some beautifully fresh char fillets from Blu Seafood.
Alright, so not the best photo…but, what’s a guy to do when he’s cooking dinner at a friend’s house and doesn’t really feel like lugging his big camera over to snap a picture? I have to remind myself that it’s ok to resort to some iPhoetography once and awhile. I mean, after all, it’s the taste that matters, not the picture that I spend ten minutes taking while dinner gets cold! Ha, ha, ha.
After getting back into town from my worldly adventures, I had a lot of catching up to do with my friends. This past weekend, I made dinner with my friend Trina. Neither of us have had scallops for quite some time, so we decided to cook some up. The pea and jalapeño purée has a nice bit of heat, which I topped with some sautéed scallions and radishes, scallops and finished it all with a couple dollops of olive tapenade to cut the richness.
5 cups chicken broth
1 cup cream
2 TSP yellow curry powder
1 TSP cayenne pepper
1 slice pancetta (1/4″ thick, finely cubed)
2/3 cup oyster mushrooms (loosely chopped)
1 TBSP unsalted butter
1 yellow onion (finely chopped)
2 garlic cloves (minced)
1 leek (halved, thinly sliced)
1 cup Steam Whistle Pilsner
2 cups arborio rice
1 lemon (zested and juiced)
1 1/2 cups radishes (trimmed, halved)
1/3 cup cane sugar
1/3 cup water
2/3 cup walnut halves
salt and pepper
Risotto is one of those never-fail comfort foods. It’s not nearly as finicky as most people think and a little bit of arborio rice can go a long way when it comes time to feed a group of people. On top of all of that, risotto has a reputation for being quite ‘fancy’. So, the next time you’re having friends over for dinner, you can whip up a filling meal for everyone in one big pan. How rad is that? Pretty damn rad, I say! Also, a little beer in your risotto never hurt anyone, right?
Now, make this for dinner tonight!
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.
1 yellow onion (chopped)
1 garlic clove
1 gala apple (peeled, 1” cubed)
1 red potato (peeled, 1” cubed)
2/3 cup cherries (pitted, halved)
3 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock to stay vegan)
1 TBSP freshly grated ginger
1 TBSP lime juice
1 TBSP sriracha
2 TSP chili powder
salt and pepper
radish and cucumber (thinly sliced, for garnish, optional)
The first time I put an apple in a soup, I was like: ‘Holy shit! This is awesome!’. Ever since that day, I’ve been throwing fruit into everything. Well, not everything, but it’s always interesting to find the balance between sweet and savoury using some of your favourite fruit. Since we’re still, thankfully, a few months away from hearty soup weather, this bisque is light, spicy and smooth. Perfect for a summer night that’s a bit overcast. Who says soup can’t be fruity?
Start off by cooking the onion and garlic with a drissle of olive oil in a medium-sized pot until softened, about 5 minutes. Next, add the chopped apple, potato, and cherries to the pot and let cook for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Pour the stock into the pot and stir in the ginger, lime juice, sriracha, and chili powder. When mixture comes to a boil, reduce to low heat and let simmer on stove for 20 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper
Remove pot from heat to let cool slightly. Next, puree soup until smooth using a food processor or blender. Return to pot and keep warm until ready to serve.
Top with some thinly sliced radish and cucumber to chill out the spicy soup!
Total cook time…35 min
1 cup radishes (trimmed and halved)
2 cups cooked beluga lentils
1 gala apple (thinly sliced, then cut into matchsticks)
1/4 cup kalamta olives (pitted and sliced)
1/4 cup chives (finely chopped)
1/4 cup red onion (thinly sliced)
8 cherry tomatoes (quartered)
1 lime (zest and juice)
1 TBSP red wine vinegar
1 TBSP kalamata olive juice
salt and pepper
1/2 cup sea-buckthorn berries
1 orange (zested and juiced)
1 clove garlic
1 TBSP white sugar
1 TBSP tomato paste
1 TSP chili powder
1 TSP butter
2 TSP grape seed oil
8 large scallops
I spent the last week in Saskatoon. I was home to attend my ten year high school reunion. It’s kind of scary how fast time goes by these days. I’m gettin’ old!
Although, Saskatoon has a tendency to make me over indulge in patio beers and barbecues with friends, I found some time to whip up this dish at my parents’ house this past Sunday. Saskatoon has a gorgeous farmers’ market where I found some sweet beluga (blue) lentils and sea-buckthorn berries.
Both the lentils and berries might be hard to locate in Calgary, so feel free to stick with your favourite lentil and some cranberries in lieu. The seared scallops with this salad were the perfect thing to eat on a warm Sunday evening, and I always forget how surprisingly filling lentils can be! Lentils, you rock!
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- Top Chef Canada: Taking The Challenge Home
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