September 14, 2014

pickled caulifower

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A growing favorite in our family is pickled cauliflower! It is so versatile as an addition to meals and snacks! I have used it in the winter in salads, samosa filling, and in salad rolls.

Pickling cauliflower is no different than any other pickled veggie, aside from beets.

Sterilize jars, lids and rings in boiling water, then you can keep the jars hot and clean in your oven set to 225 while you prep everything else. It’s really important to have a open clean work area for canning, and it’s great to have everything you need ready to go.

In a large pot boil brine:

4 cups water

3 3/4 cups apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup course sea salt

Slice cauliflower into small florets.

In each clean hot jar place

2 garlic pieces

1 tsp pickling spice (here is my homemade blend)

add and arrange cauliflower into jars so they are snug and neat

top each jar with 2 more garlic pieces

then pour hot brine into each jar to bring the fluid up so that everything sits 1/4″ below the last jar thread.

wipe the edge of the jars clean with a hot cloth and seal with lid and process (in hot water bath canner) for 15 minutes

Ta Da! Now you have pickled cauliflower which will be divine come winter time.

Enjoy!

August 11, 2014

3 bean salad 3 ways

3 bean salad 3 ways

My sweetie loves that deli counter style of 3 bean salad, and I am keen to see him grabbing healthy homemade easy lunch options, so this year I planted a bunch of green beans with the intent of making him some canned bean salad. Swamped with beans these past weeks I have busted out 3 different versions of a bean salad, all cozy and canned for future snacking! 1) Classic 3 bean salad style: chickpeas, kidney beans, and green beans with red pepper and onions 2) Cauliflower and white beans, with kidney beans and peppers 3) Spicy chili green beans and carrot with white and kidney beans, onion and garlic.

I researched a number of different recipes and finally settled on this adaption, make as much brine as you will need and if you have extra can it, and use it again later!

In a large bowl combine:Fresh beans (what ever type you fancy or have in abundance) trimmed to 1″ lengthsCooked beans of your choice (chick peas, kidney beans, and white beans are all great options) *dried beans you cook yourself will hold up better than already canned beansOnion finely choppedAn additional veggie if you fancyMix up your bowl and make sure visually it has the right ratio of beans to veggies.Guesstimate how many jars this mix will pack out and sterilize accordingly, and scale up or down this brine recipe to ensue you have enough for processing your lot.In a large pot combine:

4 cups apple cider vinegar

1 cup bottled lemon juice

2 cups cane sugar

1 cup oil

2 tsp pickling salt

5 cups water

cook and simmer on low heat until you are ready to pack jars.

 

Pack your bean mix into sterilized jars leaving about 1″ veggie free, pour brine over veggies leaving 1/2″ head space.

Place clean new lid and ring on jar and hot water bath process for 20 minutes. Ta-da! bean salad all ready to go, with no creepy additives!

 

 

 

July 20, 2014

berry yogurt cheesecake with [gf] granola crust

berry cheesecake gf

Want the divine decadence of cheesecake without all the heaviness and extra fluff? This recipe is a total spin on traditional cheesecake, that draws on whole + fresh seasonal ingredients, the resulting mini cheesecakes are like fluffy cheesy pillows of fruit crisp-ness. So forget the gelatin, condensed sweetened milk, icing sugar and corn syrup of cheesecakes past, and bust out the ; raw honey, coconut oil, granola, quinoa flakes, yogurt, old fashion cream cheese and freshly picked berries! * I am swooning over my first ever harvest of blueberries here on the home-front!

This granola crust is a great alternative to too sweet graham cracker crust… have you ever read the ingredient on the nation brand graham cracker crumbs, ACK! I will take my home made granola goodness any day. Continue reading

July 14, 2014

saskatoon syrup slam

saskatoon berry syrup

Drowning in berries these days? I sure am. I feel barely able to keep up to the picking, let alone the processing!

My saskatoon tree is literally exploding the biggest juicy saskatoon berries I have ever seen! I find these berries a little mealy for my taste, not ideal for smoothies or jam IMHO, BUT dynamite as a jelly / syrup or baked in a pie!

I made a quick saskatoon berry syrup today using a little raw honey and a day of lazy berry dripping. Continue reading

July 8, 2014

Snow Pea Summer Stir Fry

Snow Pea Summer Stir Fry

Freshly picked snow peas are perfect in this spicy bowl of early summer flavors! Crunchy Asian cabbage from Ravine Creek Farm,  organic SilverKing Tofu, along with fresh from the garden cilantro, snow peas, and garlic scapes all cooked up in a chili sesame sauce. This is the perfect meal for a summer time patio dining. Continue reading

July 2, 2014

quick fridge pickled radish

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Oh this is the most exciting time of year in the garden, finally flush abundance in every corner!

The strawberry are bursting, the first snow peas were picked today, radishes are erupting from the earth, and the carrots are screaming to be thinned! The odd blueberry is ripe enough to sneak a taste of, and the scapes have come and gone.

There are only so many radishes one family can eat! I have dutifully added them to every daily salad, and opted to add them into our favorite hot and sour soup as a water-chestnut-ish addition. And today I decided to slice some up thin and make a easy refrigerator pickle with them., and they look lovely! I am sure they will be spicy and perfect to top tacos with! Continue reading

June 21, 2014

new growth

 

heart kootenay food

Hello my loyal readers and SOLE Foodies! I have a new adventure underway that I am keen to share with you all, something from my heart.

You may have noticed my absence over the past few months, I have been busy dealing with some curve balls life has thrown our way, and busy in the gardens planting, weeding and dreaming. I was struggling to find time to blog / photograph all the new recipes I have been creating, BUT I have finally created a way to continue to work on building a strong an thriving local food economy while still sharing recipes from my food shed with you all. So here it is, the best of both worlds…

I have recently launched a http://www.kootenayfood.com a project so dear to my heart. I am so impassioned to support my farming friends and neighbors, and share with eaters the message of real food. SOLE Food! After Farm Food Fork (the conference I have been working on since last fall) It was determined I needed to create a place for eaters to find farmers and homesteaders to source inputs, and share ideas and events. The website has been an exciting undertaking, and just the other night I added an element to the website which brings it full circle for me.

THE SEASONAL FORK | A weekly-ish guide to what is abundant in my Kootenay foodshed, along with 2 recipes for that weeks flushing crop; one for fresh eating  and one for putting up for another day! I will be drawing on my years of seasonal recipes, and of course creating new ones. So I hope you will join me at http://www.kootenayfood.com/dig-in/fork/

 

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March 18, 2014

farm food fork

FarmFoodForkHi Folks, This post come with apologizes for my lag on the  blogging front over the last couple months… I have been pouring every waking hour into building my regions local food shed, and have undertaken a huge food project! Which will roll out in just 2.5 short weeks! OMG! I hope this will be a valid absentee slip, and I promise right after this event I will be in the throws of wild harvested recipes and spring abundance again! I can already taste the morels and the nettles and the buckwheat shoots... Until then we are enjoying meaty dishes with frozen kale and pesto too, pickled and fermented goodness and never ending carrots and potatoes. My daughter has been cooking a lot and we have taken to “mystery box dinner challenges” and “pressures tests”, which she is acing! I’ll share those when I have a minute. Until then I am doing good work, and hope you’ll all be patient with me. You can check out what I have been up to here at farmfoodfork.com

March 6, 2014

cauliflower ‘n cheese comfort

cauliflower and cheese

Mac and cheese is my ultimate comfort food, and it’s the first, and one of the only things my mom ever taught me how to make. Since going off wheat I have of course made this dish many times with various macaroni substitutes; quinoa noodles, corn noodles, rice noodles. But honestly, I think I have discovered the best GF noodle sub ever…. roasted cauliflower florets! Mmm. So much better than pasta. Dense, nutty almost with great body and texture, I am not sure I will go back to pasta after last nights diner! Continue reading

February 13, 2014

chocolate brownie teaser

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So here I made these killer gluten free deeply chocolate espresso brownies, adapted from a brownie recipe I had been playing with for some time. I tweaked it just right. covered it with a thick slather of espresso chocolate gnache and the brownies disappeared ever so quickly. Almost as quickly as my recipe notes! I have actually lost this recipe, and I have been hunting for nearly two weeks… nearly two weeks of no blog posts (for shame) wasted on not posting this recipe. Instead tonight I am posting a tease, just a picture. One day soon I am sure I will find my notes and will revise this entry (I hope ).

Until then I am so sorry for my lack of posting, there has been so much I have wanted to share lately too, but between my new LED lighting adaptions, which make the most lovely meals look lack luster and the all round general exhaustion I feel at the end of the day, after working day and night at some HUGE regional food security projects that involve multiple event planning, web development and oodles of graphic design… whew, I am nearly too pooped to blog (for the first time ever). My most sincere apologies, I will be back at it full on soon. I promise.

January 31, 2014

simple sichuan noodle soup

beef noodle soup

Sometimes you just need a kick of spicy rich noodle soup, when those days happen and you still want dinner on the table within the hour, then this recipe is your soul warming solution. Tender beef (or not) in a steamy broth of ginger, garlic, Sichuan peppers and chili, laced with earthy garden kale, cabbage and carrot ribbons with just enough rice noodles. Yum. ever since I made those melt your face off to die for dan dan noodles I have been a wee bit scared of the sichuan pepper, but I freed myself of that fear and it was liberating! Also this would so easily be a killer vegetarian soup, omit the beef (duh), use mushroom broth instead of beef broth, pump up the mushroom volume and likely you’ll already have vegetarian fish sauce in the pantry (which is all I use anymore). Easy. Continue reading

January 25, 2014

maple maca bliss balls

maple maca balls

These represent my favorite flavors in one little healthful mouthful! There is this sweet cafe in a nearly town that sells lots of yummy raw treats and I often find myself with a pocketful of their maca maple balls when my sweet tooth sings to me. This is my bliss ball perfection easy take on those treats. Quick and lovely super-food-rich-guilt-free treats.

In a food processor combine:

2 cups unsweetened coconut  (+ more to roll the balls in after)
4 tbsp coconut oil1/4 cup raw honey1/4 cup maple syruppinch of sea salt1 tbsp black maca powder1/4 cup hemp seeds (hulled and organic)splash of vanilla

Process until your mixture begins to ball.
Portion bliss mix into small bite size balls by rolling them in your palms, then toss in a small bowl of coconut to fully coat the balls.
Allow to rest in a cool place for 30 minutes, they dig in!

enjoy.

January 12, 2014

gluten free coconut almond jam bars

gluten free jam sqares

Eager to bake something gooey and gluten free, my daughter and I set out to make some nice jar squares. These are similar to those really yummy mojito mint coconut bars I made back when the mint was flushing in the bog below. These days I am still flush with a big batch of refrigerator raspberry jam I made weeks back to fill those gluten free doughnuts with. I realized half way through this recipe I didn’t have any more coconut flour, and I decided to make my own, just like I make bean flour, or oat flour or nut flour… and it seemed to work OK. After a long ride in the processor my fancy shred organic coconut was very flour like and preformed well in the recipe.

Continue reading

January 7, 2014

squash streusel muffins

gluten free squash muffins

Round 2 of using up that giant squash I roasted. These gluten free muffins were lovely and spicy. They baked up really nice with a perfectly risen muffin top. I made these dairy free and gluten free and the whole family loved them. Even my sweetie who hates pumpkin in anything but pie ate a number of these warm from the oven.

I mashed together a couple different recipes to come up with these, and was thrilled with the results. I used chickpea flour and some gluten free four mix (Bob’s) along with freshly roasted winter squash, coconut oil and my daughter insisted we throw in chocolate chips. The streusel topping was the perfect finish to these lovely muffins. Continue reading

January 5, 2014

sweet + salty squash

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My winter storing squash are calling to me… EAT US, EAT US. The trick is to eat them all without having the family go on squash strike! I have already made a batch of these darling squash and ricotta gnocchi, pureed squash into a Jamaican curry, and served it roasted with butter and garlic. Today I had to cook down a pretty massive blue warty squash, I opted to roast it un-seasoned then pureed half of it (froze a portion) and made really great gluten free chocolate streusel muffins with some, and this yummy dinner with the rest. I will share the muffin recipe tomorrow. Tonight I combined smoked cured thick cut happy bacon with caramelized onions, toasted chickpeas and seared squash. Paleo perfect and just the right balance of salty and sweet.

Sorry about my color troubles with my photo’s.. these new LED lights and the dark of winter are playing havoc with my light meter and white balancing :( arg… I am trying to cook more in the day time to capture more natural light. Bare with me. Continue reading

December 29, 2013

tourtiere a borrowed tradition

tourtiere

So pretty, isn’t it? This holiday season I was adamant that I would make French Canadian tourtiere to be served on Christmas Eve along side my new favorite killer condiment green tomato ketchup. What a great idea! I read about a million recipes for traditional tourtiere from various regions all over Quebec, which differ vastly. I settled on a flaky pork lard and butter whole spelt crust and created a dish of rich browned pork, lamb and beef seasoned with garlic and onion, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, bay and savory. I added small pieces of potato and a little chili for just a hint of heat. Continue reading

December 20, 2013

cheeze-luv gluten free crackers

hommade cheez-its

Just like the processed snack cheez-it’s or cheese-nibs these golden cheesy puffs are perfect for snacking… only these are gluten free and made with real food… well aside from the orange cheese I purchased just for this occasion! I had an epic holiday kitchen marathon today which started with another round of Hot Damn Bacon Jam, then I made a batch of Amazing Apple Pie Jam followed by a double batch of these darling cheese-luv crackers. All day I was imagining how amazing a dollop of apple pie jam would be atop of fresh crisp cheese cracker, and I was more than right! This combo is like an instant cheese slice on an apple pie party in your mouth! Killer Killer Combo! Continue reading

December 16, 2013

pakora perfection

pakoras

So the other day while my daughter and I were making doughnuts I figured we might as well stack our deep fry functions and make some pakoras to go with the killer pot of chicken curry that was waiting for us in the slow cooker. These turned out perfect and were actually really easy to make. Continue reading

December 15, 2013

jelly filled gluten free doughnuts

jelly filled doughnuts

This is totally over the top, but when you are aching to bake and your oven is broken the 12 or so tedious steps it takes to makes these darling indulgent holes all seem worth the effort. Not only did we alternate a traditional fried yeast doughnut recipe to be gluten free, but we (my daughter and I) whipped up a fresh batch of raspberry jam from the summers frozen stash to lovingly hand pipe fresh filling into warm sugar drenched dough balls. oh my. So if you have all day to make something truly s[special, please by all means try out this recipe: Continue reading

December 11, 2013

Kitchen Aid killed my holiday baking :(

appliances

I have a sad story to tell you all…

Remember last year when I was swooning over my new fancy birthday oven? My sweetie bought me a really really nice convection oven last year and for at least 2 months I was head over heals in love with my new range and all it’s fancy features. The honeymoon was over when the back burner stopped working and I was taken aback that the quality of this product was so low that I had to have a technician out so soon after my purchase.  Within a week of that burner failing the shatter incident happened, where a teeny tiny bottle fell on my stove and it shattered into a million pieces :( TRAGEDY. I was out of pocket a few really big bills, and started living in total fear of breaking another cook-top. I have become OCD, and in fact my new kitchen design features no cabinets above the stove, no storage what so ever, to prevent another shattering if you can believe it. Imagine redesigning your kitchen to lose cupboard space around the fear that your stove will break again.

Just the other day, just as the temperature started to drop my urge to bake for warmth was building when I noticed the clock display was blank on my oven… Continue reading

December 3, 2013

holiday baking ideas…

I know some of you are chomping at the bit to get some holiday baking done, and that is why I have highlighted some of my all time favorite recipes for sweet holiday cheer. I’ll have plenty of new recipes to share starting next week. Some of these are vegan, some gluten free, some so buttery and wheat-y you’ll feel like your at grandmas.

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Rosemary brown butter shortbread-cookies

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Dreamy coconut pecan date bliss balls

lemon ginger pillows

Lemon ginger meringues

rosett-2

Scandinavian rosettes

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Ginger Blissmas

buckwheat pear loaf

Ginger pear chocolate buckwheat loafs

cinnamon buns

OMG cinnamon bun madness

chocolate pretzel almond bark

Chocolate almond pretzel bark

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Truffle kisses chocolate mousse

vegan nut butter truffle balls

Vegan nut butter truffle balls

perfect pumpkin pie

Pumpkin luv’in pie

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Marvelous ginger marmalade

Now where to start?

November 28, 2013

cornbread wife saver

wife saver with corn bread

I am pretty sure you all are familiar with the dish “wife saver” we lovingly call it wife beater around here because it is pretty “white-bread-trashy”, why do folks love it so? My mom used to make this on Christmas morning once in a while, with SPAM if you can believe it, and my sweeties grandma makes it pretty often for brunch; white bread (crusts off) layered with ham and orange cheese soaked in egg and topped with corn flakes and more processed cheese! I tried once to make a really fancy version of this for a brunch, I used baguette, smoked bacon, roasted garlic, fancy french cheeses and even a bechamel sauce with fresh herbs, I loved it but my guy was missing all the trash factor, seriously. He told me not to mess with his wife beater, and for the last 8 or so years I have complied, until the other day that is… My daughter and I made a big batch of chili and she whipped up some corn bread skillets using our families favorite recipe (with the substitution  of corn flour for spelt flour). By day 3 we were over the corn bread and the chili, and I kinda forgot about half a skillet of corn bread for just long enough for it to start to dry out, and that is when it came to me; corn bread wife saver! It was worth a go, and I am so happy I tried it and the whole family LOVED this version. Continue reading

November 23, 2013

ox tail curry

ox tail curry

I have eaten a good amount of ox tail curry in my life (love it), and since our pig-in-a-day snout to tail cookery and butchery experience I feel like my chef-y odd bit cookery skills are more honed than ever. When my friend brought be a bundle of ox tail bits I was pretty stoked to bust out a curry, and tonight was the night. I knew I had to braise the meat and then pressure cook it for the softest tender beef, and that is exactly what I did. These nubby tail bits were slowly braised in pork lard and a heavy seasoning of salt and my favorite garam masala spice, then set to cook (in my instapot pressure cooker) for a few hours with some frozen whole garden tomatoes, loads of onions, and garlic… the yield was the most insanely moist buttery bits of beef ever! This curry also got a healthy dose of potatoes, peas, more spice and coconut milk for a creamy robust spicy curry, very similar to a vindaloo.

Ox tail isn’t for the faint of heart though! It’s no boiled pig head, but it is a little gnarly, albeit an abundant and cheap cut of meat. It’s a little bit like cleaning a roasted chicken carcass for soup, you need to caress the meat from the bone and sort out the fatty cartilage-y undesirable bits, of which there are about equal amount yuck to yum factors with tail. Totally worth the effort, and in fact the only time I have cooked as buttery melt in your mouth meat was in fact when I was making headcheese, the pork check was divine.

So if you find yourself flush in tail chunks, here is the low down on making a killer curry with them, you won’t soon forget:

ox tails Continue reading

November 22, 2013

chocolate oat bars

choclate oat bars

Easy no bake energy boosters, not too healthy not too sweet, just right for a simple treat.

In a double boiler melt

1 cup of almond butter

1 cup coconut oil

2 cups chocolate chips

a splash of vanilla

Once melted mix into a bowl of:

2 cups rolled oats

1 cup coconut

1/2 cup cacao chips

pour mixture into lined pan, portion with  ice cream scoop, or press into chocolate or mini muffin molds, set in fridge and serve.

I decided to pour half the mixture into a terrine pan lined with parchment and sprinkle with some beautiful coconut chips, the rest I poured into some really lovey little flower cast iron molds I had. So cute.

no bake chocolate flowers

November 13, 2013

kraut cakes + give aways

saurekraut n sauce

Exciting News, I have a really fun give away offer to kick off today for all my fermenting fans.. fear not failed fermenters, this give away will keep your spirits up and offer you successful future kraut crocks! My friends at the Urban Homesteading Store in Stony Plain Alberta are teaming up with me and eating with SOLE to offer my loyal readers a killer give away…

Lets talk sauerkraut for a minute… I love the stuff, my family is hooked and I have managed to make a few really great batches of kraut over the years… truth be told though, I have had a number of total failures too! That is what is so exciting about this give away; The Urban Homesteading Store is offering 5 packages of Caldwell’s Starter Culture for Fermenting Vegetables. This starter is added during the sauerkraut making process and essentially contains a really strong culture that over produces rapidly and blocks out other bacterias that can cause your ferment to go off, essentially providing you with the best chance at making great tasting beneficial ferments for you and your family!

I know just how good fermented foods are, so I try to incorporate some in to as many meals as possible, and recently I came up with a pretty awesome savory snack to make with sauerkraut: savory gluten free sauerkraut pancakes! They are fabulous, and dunk-able and lovely when slathered in good homemade sauces. I used chickpea and rice flour to makes these silky fluffy kraut cakes along with farm fresh milk and coop fresh eggs. I used some of my “blue ribbon” cabbage sauerkraut which I fermented with shredded carrots… so lovely.

kraut cakes Continue reading

November 5, 2013

kimchi corn crusted avacado taco

kimchi taco

Korea meets Mexico, and falls happily ever after in love on this organic yellow corn tortilla wrapped up in homemade chipotle salsa, fresh feta and red cabbage. Kimchi and deep fried avocado who knew?

Well the other day me and by back-road girlfriend ditched our muckers, baled on our canning and went to town for lunch, we hit this new Mexican place and on the menu they had a panko and kimchi taco, yum right. Well I have been thinking of how it could have been improved and gave it a shot tonight. I decided to forgo the white bread panko crust and do a gluten free chickpea and corn meal crust on the avocodo quarters, and I used some lovely locally made kimchi, and garnished the tacos with a little more … get up and go. Perfect if I do say so myself. These avocado wedges golden fried would be pretty killer just served up for a party with a stellar salsa to dunk in! Continue reading

November 4, 2013

lactose fermented mustard

fermenting mustard

This fermenting thing is pretty addictive, I have to warn you all!

Not only is it a easy, low energy way to put up food, it’s a brilliant way to add way more nutrients and health benefits to that food. You may have noticed I am kind of condiment crazy; I love the honey ale mustard that has become a staple in my family, we rely on my making endless batches of ketchup, HP sauce, hot saucechutney, even nutella and lemon curd. All of these things are better when they are homemade!

I recently attended a fabulous fermenting workshop and now knowing I can ferment many of the condiments I love, makes me even more happy to experiment. I know I said before how easy making mustard was… well now fermenting mustard makes it even easier to have nourishing condiments on the table. Check out how simple this is…

lactose fermented mustard Continue reading

November 3, 2013

green tomato ketchup

more green tomatoes

This time of year is sleepy and chilly in the garden and there are only a few bits and bobs still needing attention… namely the green tomatoes (and some more sauerkraut). I already put up my favorite green tomato “verde salsa” en mass, and the whole monitoring of endless green tomatoes is a little to exhausting for me, so I opted to can a big batch of ketchup, green tomato ketchup that is. I still have a few pounds of green toms to consider but the stress of the sorting and storing is all nicely put up in pint jars, whew.  Apparently this recipe goes really well with tourtiere and other such meaty dishes, and is pretty popular in Quebec. This batch got me thinking about the holidays with all this tourtiere talk… I think i might finally try my had at a French Canadian classic meat pie this year. I have been making my own ketchup for a few years now, and this green tomato spin was calling for me to give it ago. I read a half dozen well reviewed recipes and settled on my own seasoning blend, the results were bright and hot and really well spiced… I can see that meat pairings would be nice here.

I also had a good yield of still-not-red cayenne peppers which I pulled from the green house in my final fall clean and decided to flush this recipe with some unknown heat elements… turns out, though not ripe and red the peppers were still pretty kicking, which I love.

green tomato ketchup

Continue reading

October 29, 2013

albino beet harvest

pickled albino beets

This year I grew for the first time Seed Savers Albino Beets which I got from the Urban Hometeading Store (which I adore!) on a visit through Northern Alberta in the snowy early spring. I was eager to try to pickle these white beets and see how tidy the process might be without pink hands and a crime scene kitchen clean up. So far I have really enjoyed cooking with them. Adding albino beets to many soups and stews for that great fresh beet flavor without odd tinting of my meals, or the mess that goes with traditional beets. These look an awful lot like salad turnips, but are sweet and tender.

Continue reading

October 25, 2013

ginger beef

gunger beef

This is the real deal my friends. If you are from Calgary you know what I am talking about when I say Ginger Beef, this is a homegrown Western Chinese classic, born in “cowtown” Alberta, this dish can be really hard to find all over the place. I don’t think I have actually eaten ginger beef  since I was about 16, but tonight I made a killer super authentic ginger beef, that blew my family away, and my guy is a total ginger beef connoisseur, he claimed it was the best ever, and I totally agree! I made it gluten free and of course the beef was grass raised grass finished happy healthy beef, I also made mine super heavy on the garden veg.

Now straight up this is not a easy dish to bang out in a pinch, it took hours of marinating and a double fry, with a wok stir fry finish. Lots of steps, but if your miles away from a decent Chinese meal and your family is aching for a fix, this is the answer. Pair this with my vegan hot and sour soup, and a batch of mu shu pork noodles and you are  off to the races… just need some fortune cookies to finish the night off.

Continue reading

October 19, 2013

sweet potato skillet pie

sweet potato skillet pie

This recipe is the origin of so many amazing adventures in my life. I recall always disliking Thanksgiving dinner as a child… I didn’t eat meat, I hate stuffing, dry potatoes arg, overcooked brussel sprouts… all bad things. One year my aunt brought to dinner something that changed my life forever… a baked mashed sweet potato dish covered in sugar coated pecans… finally FLAVOR for a holiday meal! I started making it myself as a teenager and really amped up the seasonings, I played with maple coated nut toppings and loved it all. It soon became the dish I always brought to the festive meals… that and the turkey later on, as I would seek out sustainable happy turkey farms and drive for hours and pay top dollar to deliver a raw fresh bird to whom ever was hosting the big family dinner that year, just so I could indulge in turkey and gravy along with my sweet potato pie!

This sweet potato pie dish welcomed me to the world of sharing food with folks, presenting a truly stand out dish and soaking up the oohs and ahhs. From there I was hooked on nourishing people with really tasty foods! Fast forward many years and when I was opening my second bakery and was developing vegan and gluten free recipes I decided one day to plop a couple cups of holiday left over sweet potato pie into the mixer… that moment the famous Pure vegan Sweet Potato Pow cookie was born. Here is a revised version of that killer cookie recipe and a little more of the story, but back to the pie… Continue reading

October 19, 2013

green tahini dressing on falafel salad

green tahini dressing on falafel salad

OMG my fear of all things white and creamy have had me avoiding tahini most of my life, admittedly  I still do when eating out as so often it is mixed with yogurt which I still can’t manage to eat… But the other night I made a killer batch of homemade falafels with sesame seeds and all sorts of crunchy deliciousness, and imagined the dinner needing a bit of a dressing to appease my sweet heart who drowns his falafel in all sorts of white sauce. This killer green tahini dressing was born and I just have to share it with you all, because it is so very good!

Continue reading

October 18, 2013

lactose fermented hot sauce

fermented hot sauce

Oh this might be even better than the lactose fermented pickles my family LOVES. I have been longing & trying to make this hot sauce for two years. Making this both a long time coming, and so worth the wait. This stuff is fabulous.

I am getting sucked into the world of fermenting, it’s slippery slope I have to warn you!

Continue reading

October 16, 2013

asian lake fish soup

asian fish soup

I have a huge backlog of recipes to get through, boy the harvest time is busy!

Last week my sweetie came home after a long day of fishing with the boys with 2 lovely and large fresh lake Dolly Vardens, which as I understand are land locked salmon, they are a little oilier than salmon and even yummier. I don’t buy fish ever, if you want to know why check this out. I miss eating fish a whole lot so when we go fishing and come home with fresh caught lake fish I sure try to make the most of all of it! I also decided to fillet these lovely fish myself, thankfully youtube guided me through the process and I can’t believe how much easier it was to do than I imagined. First night I oven roasted 1 fillet with a thick coat of grainy mustard, maple syrup and garlic, yum! The I started the fish stock. I boiled down the spines and tails and all the boney bits and fins with some onion and garlic all night and much of the next day. After straining the result was a deeply rich fish stock to build this aromatic Asian inspired soup with.

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October 8, 2013

scalloped squash + such

 

squash gratin

I was craving scalloped potatoes the other day, and as I still haven’t dug my potatoes out yet I decided to make a hybrid harvest spin on the comfort food I was aching for. I used rich nutty chickpea flour to create a thick garlic sauce to ooze into the layers of squash, onions, rainbow chard and carrots. I picked up a few packs of really amazing goat feta the other day and blended that with blanched chard to create a couple lasagna inspired layers in this dish. As I was making it I was reminded of that killer vegan cashew “cheese sauce” I made a while back, and how easily that could be used to make this dish both vegan and gluten free! Continue reading

October 5, 2013

pickle palooza

pickle-palooza-2013 vallican BC

Our valleys 2nd annual Canning & Preserving Festival is finally here! Tomorrow Sunday October 6th 10-2 @ Vallican Whole, Slocan BC. There will be canning contests for best preserves in 4 categories, a lively jar swap, experts demoing a number of preserving techniques, local farmers and producers selling their bounty. There will be food for the whole family and canning crafts for the kids! If your in the Kootenays and your keen to learn, stock up, or compete come on down and join us for this Canning Jamming Extravaganza! For more info go here.

October 4, 2013

apple cider vinegar + hard cider

apple cider vinegar making

This is a very exciting harvest time for us, we just picked a truckload (literally) of apples from a number of different friends properties over the past week, and yesterday I loaded them all up and set off for the “Apple Jack” in Brilliant. William who has been pressing apples with his home made hydraulic apple press sine the 60’s. He tossed and chopped and hauled and mashed and pressed and screened 25 Gallons of fresh raw unpasteurized valley apple juice for me and my friends. What an event! I didn’t bring my camera and sooo wished I had! The juice is divine, but I had other plans for this nectar…

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September 24, 2013

harvest wedding desserts

wedding dessert

Please excuse my absence over the past while, our friends equinox country wedding has taken over my culinary life for a time. I had the great pleasure of baking all of the desserts for their local harvest feast, along with the wedding cake, and some lovely condiments to go along with the exceptional charcuterie table, whole hog roast and the stunning seasonal dinner Chris Cho of Ayden Kitchan and Bar rolled. Continue reading

September 16, 2013

cafe “caramel” nut brownie : gluten free

gliten free cafe caramel brownies

This is a remake of an old gluten free brownie I revamped to use what I had on hand. With this formula you get a nice dense square with some spring and loads of nutty chocolate notes. I say caramel, but really I used dates, when they are baked like this you end up with moist sticky ribbons through the batter that taste like caramel, it’s lovely.

There is no butter or oil or sugar added to this batter, just almond butter and cocoa with a blend of black bean flour and brown rice flour, farm fresh eggs and just a hint of molasses and maple syrup, all rounded out by some strong coffee. It is like a no guild chocolate caramel coconut milk mochachino. Continue reading

September 15, 2013

“making banana pancakes…

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… pretend like it’s the weekend” –  Jack Johnson was on to something… and I am afraid I have been in the dark about this Banana Pancake phenomenon! I just discovered, through various means in short succession that if you combine 1 banana 2 eggs and 1 spoon of peanut butter you get the most dense, moist rich gluten free pancakes on the planet! HOW DID I NOT KNOW THIS ????  In the event you are like me and desperately looking for a carbie tasting breakfast snack to sop up some egg yoke, then your in luck! This recipe is way too easy, and once you ditch the gluten free pre-mixed pancake mix, for this you will be laughing! Continue reading

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