Posts tagged ‘local’

Glittering like jewels

Now that we’re in Vancouver, I’m discovering a new version of the west coast that is thriving, vibrant and urban. It’s an ideal place to situate my passions for food, gardens, and culture and I love living here a little more every day. Still, after spending last week exploring our old stomping grounds on Vancouver Island, the allure of returning someday remains. (more…)

June 29, 2010 at 5:53 pm Leave a comment

Zucchini and tomato strata

Egg stratas are a favourite food of mine. They’re healthy and nourishing and one of those foods that can be made with an endless variations of ingredients and flavours. This weekend it’s ripe tomatoes and small organic zucchini along with fresh herbs from my patio garden. The dill tastes beautiful in this dish with the tomatoes and zucchini. If you make stratas, I’d love to hear about new ideas for flavour combinations.

The recipe below serves two to four people and can easily double or triple if you’ve got a larger group.

Zucchini and tomato strata
4 slices of bread
3 eggs
1 cup of milk
1/4 cup onion, finely minced
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped (or 1 teaspooon dried dill)
1/8 teaspoon paprika
Fresh ground pepper
1 tomato, diced
1 small zucchini, chopped
1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup fresh chives, finely minced

Break bread up into small pieces and spread in a greased 9″ round baking pan. Whisk together eggs and milk and add onion, mustard and spices. Pour over bread. Scatter tomatoes and zucchini over top of bread and egg mixture and press down lightly. Top with cheese and bake at 375F for 25 to 30 minutes until egg is set. Sprinkle fresh chives over top.

Serve with muffins and fresh fruit for breakfast or with salad for lunch or dinner.

May 22, 2010 at 1:55 pm Leave a comment

Blueberry coffee cake

Our big move has temporarily stalled most kitchen activities, but I did find some time last weekend for baking. Eating local means storing lots of summer produce in the freezer and I had an almost full bag of BC blueberries to use up. I’ve been meaning to make the blueberry coffee cake recipe from the Four Sisters Inns Cookbook for ages and the surplus blueberries created a perfect reason. (more…)

April 4, 2010 at 2:38 pm 3 comments

One perfect breakfast

Beautiful Sylvan Star gouda, one of my very favourite cheeses, is pictured here as part of what I consider to be a perfect breakfast. A piece of fruit, a wedge of cheese, and a healthy muffin, toast, or a homemade granola bar filled with fruits, nuts and whole grains. There are other perfect breakfasts (here and here and here), but this is a good one and a quick one for when you’re running out the door to work or don’t want to waste a minute getting to the projects or relaxation you’ve been longing for all week.

January 22, 2010 at 12:04 pm 1 comment

Stuffed acorn squash

I am slowly turning on to acorn squash. I’ve always loved the way it looks, and the sheer simplicity of it. But it’s so rich that sometimes I find myself sated after the first few bites. I decided to try making it stuffed instead of the usual baked version with maple syrup glaze. It was delicious, a snap to make and perfect for a chilly winter evening. Below is a recipe for 4 people. (more…)

December 1, 2009 at 8:11 pm 2 comments

Sunchoke soup

It’s soup season again, always a reassuring time of year. Today I made sunchoke soup with some carrots and potatoes, all grown within our 100 mile range. It was a very simple thing to do.

Peel 1 cup sunchokes and coarsely chop. Peel 2 cups potatoes and coarsely chop. Add to a pot of boiling water along with 2 cups coarsely chopped carrots. Let the water boil down as everything softens and add in 1/2 cup finely diced onion for the final 10 minutes of cooking. Drain off some of the cooking water into a measuring cup and then puree the vegetable mixture in batches, adding in a bit of the reserved cooking water to get the texture and thickness you like. Add it all back into the pot, season with salt and pepper, heat through and serve with some cheese and crackers.

A bottle of pinot noir is also a tasty addition if you have it handy.

November 16, 2009 at 9:27 pm Leave a comment

Welcome to fall

sunflower head with ribbon

Calgary’s fall has been less than idyllic so far. We spent 10 days vacationing on Vancouver Island in mid-September, and when we came back the weather was hot and balmy, as if it was still summer. A few days after that it turned cold with the first frosts of the season. Since then, we’ve experienced chilly rains and more than a few days of snow, most recently paired with blustering winds and temperatures dipping to -10C.

Aside from braving the cold for a few brief moments today to hang this beautiful sunflower head from Eagle Creek Flowers for our backyard birds to snack on, I’ve felt mostly deprived of the usual joys of experiencing the fall season outdoors. At its best, fall is one of my favourite seasons. It is soothing and peaceful to watch the plant life in our garden reach its full life cycle and prepare to rest for the winter months. And while I miss the warmth of the summer months, enjoying more time nesting in our cozy house is a welcome shift as the seasons change.

We’re spending this weekend, Thanksgiving weekend in Canada, visiting Lake Louise for a couple of days and after that we’ll enjoy a family dinner to celebrate the holiday. With luck we might also squeeze in the Harvest Country Drive, which is happening between Calgary and Red Deer – a seasonal, farm-friendly activity in our region that I’ve never experienced. My hope is that the whole weekend will provide a thorough dose of fall and some much-needed time outdoors, walking, taking photographs and experiencing nature before the long winter settles in.

October 9, 2009 at 1:33 pm 1 comment

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