Friday, 31 January 2014

Tandoori Salmon Fillets with Mango Mint Relish

A wonderful salmon dish with loads of Indian flavour.  I used Greek Yogurt thinned with a bit of milk for this.  The Mango Mint relish really compliments the salmon.  From Food and Drink Autumn 2003.

4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp garam masala or curry paste (I prefer the garam masala)
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 cup plain yogurt
4 salmon fillets, about 175 g each

1 large mango, peeled
3 green onions, finely chopped
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 tsp finely chopped jalapeno pepper
2 tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp chopped mint leaves
Salt to taste
Vegetable oil for brushing salmon

  1. Combine garlic, ginger, lemon juice, garam masala, vegetable oil and yogurt.  Spread on salmon. Let marinate for 1 hour.
  2. Dice mango into 1/2 inch dice.  Toss with onions, ginger, jalapeno pepper, lime juice and mint leaves.  Season with salt (I omit the salt).  Reserve, refrigerated until needed.
  3. Brush salmon with oil then grill salmon flesh side down for 2 minutes, turn over, close lid and grill 5 minutes on skin side or until white juices appear.  Serve relish on the side.
Serves 4

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Cold Chicken Noodle Salad

A really simple and delicious recipe that originated from Canadian Living Magazine.  You could use this for dinner, pack it up for a picnic or use it in lunches, it is very versatile.

85 g Pasta - your choice - a spaghetti/vermicelli type works well here though
1 tbsp sodium reduced soy sauce
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tsp liquid honey
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, grated
Pinch pepper
Half sweet red pepper, sliced
1 cup julienned carrot
1 cup diced cucumber
225 g boneless skinless chicken breast, grilled and sliced
1 green onion, chopped

  1. In large pot of boiling lightly salted water, cook vermicelli until tender, about 3 minutes.  Drain and rinse under cold water; drain again.  Set aside in colander.
  2. In bowl, whisk together soy sauce, lime juice, sesame oil, honey, ginger, garlic and pepper.
  3. In two 3 cup airtight containers, layer noodles, red pepper, carrot, cucumber and chicken.  Sprinkle with green onion,
  4. Toss with dressing.
Makes 2 servings about 420 cal each

Monday, 27 January 2014

Luxe Seafood Pie with Rosti Topping

The original recipe called for individual pies…which would be great except I didn't have 6 - 2 cup oven proof dishes so I made 1 pie and it worked just fine.  I just used my cast iron frying pan.  I like the Arctic Char, Trout and Lobster are all sustainably caught species and the combination of the three is rich and delicious.  From Food and Drink Autumn 2011.

1 medium onion
2 cups whole milk (I used 1% and it was still rich)
1/2 tsp black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
500g Arctic char or pickerel fillets
1/4 cup unsalted butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
250 g smoked trout or mackerel fillets
250 g cooked, shelled lobster meat
1/3 cup all purpose flour
Pinch cayenne
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 cup frozen peas, thawed and drained
1/4 cup each finely chopped parsley and chives
1 tbsp drained capers
4 small cornichons, drained and finely chopped
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper


4 yukon gold potatoes, each 3 inches, peeled
1/4 cup unsalted butter; melted
2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
1/4 tsp each kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  1. For filling, cut a thick slice from onion and finely chop remainder.  In a medium saucepan, combine onion slice, milk, peppercorns, bay leaves and nutmeg.  Bring milk to a simmer over medium high heat.
  2. Cut Arctic char fillets into large pieces sized to fit the saucepan, and add to simmering milk.  Reduce heat to low and poach, covered, 5 to 10 minutes or until fish is opaque throughout.  Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. In a small skillet, heat 1 tbsp butter over medium heat.  Add chopped onion and cook, stirring often for 5 to 7 minutes or until softened but not browned.  Add garlic and cook, stirring for 30 seconds or until fragrant.  Add wine and bring to a boil.  Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes of until wine has reduced by half.  Remove from the heat and set aside.
  4. Strain Arctic char, reserving milk but discarding flavourings.  Flake Arctic char into bite size pieces, discarding any skin and bones.  Put in a medium bowl.  Flake trout into bite-size pieces, discarding any skin and bones.  Cut lobster into bite size pieces.  Add trout and lobster to Arctic char.
  5. In a large saucepan, heat remaining butter oer medium heat.  Add flour and cayenne and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 to 2 minutes or until the flour and butter roux looks dry and is fragrant (do not brown). Gradually whisk in reserved milk, then cream.  Cook for about 2 minutes, whisking constantly, until sauce thickens and is smooth.  Remove from heat.
  6. Stir onion mixture into sauce, then add fish mixture, peas, parsley, chives, capers, cornichons and Worcestershire sauce.  Stir gently.  Season with salt, pepper and more cayenne if necessary.  Divide mixture among six 2 cup individual baking dishes.  If you're not completing the pies immediately, cover and refrigerate them until ready to proceed, removing them from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before adding the topping.
  7. For rosti topping, preheat oven to 400F.
  8. Put potatoes in a large saucepan and add enough cold water to cover them.  Bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered for 10 minutes. Drain well and set aside until cool enough to handle.
  9. Using the large holes on a box grater, grate potatoes into a large bowl.  Add butter, parsley, salt and pepper and mix with a fork until well combined.
  10. Spoon potato mixture on top of seafood filling to cover it completely, dividing evenly.  Put dishes on a large baking sheet.  Bake for about 30 minutes or until potato is starting to brown and filling is bubbling.
Serves 6

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Sweet and Sour Spareribs

The better quality rib you buy the better this will be.

1 rack spareribs
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup vinegar
1/2 cup water
Salt and pepper
1 tsp soya sauce
1/2 cup ketchup
Little HP Sauce
1 topped tsp cornstarch

Brown spareribs.  Boil above ingredients until thickened.  Place ribs in a roaster; cover with sauce.  Bake at 350F for about 1 1/2 hours.  Baste with gravy.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Capellini with Olives and Crispy Crumbs

A simple pasta dish with great flavour.  Using a good quality bread is important for this meal.  I have used the Sun-Dried Tomato Bread with Shallots and Herbs in this recipe but you could substitute for another favourite.  From Food and Drink Winter 2012.

3 cups very coarse fresh bread crumbs from Sun-Dried Tomato Bread with Shallots and Herbs
1 1/4 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp finely minced fresh thyme or rosemary leaves
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 large garlic cloves, minced
500 g capellini or capelli d'angelo or spaghettini pasta
1/2 cup pitted olives such as Kalamata, slivered
1/2 cup shopped fresh herbs such as basil or parsley, divided
1/2 cup chicken stock or water, hot
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Line a baking tray with parchment.  Stir crumbs with cheese, thyme, salt and pepper.  Drizzle with olive oil; using hands, work oil into crumbs until all are moistened.  Spread on parchment paper.
  3. Bake on middle rack for 10 minutes.  Stir, slightly breaking up any fragrant clumps that have formed.  Continue baking 5 minutes; stir.  Bake another 3 to 5 minutes or until browned.  Cool in pan.  (if making ahead, cool and refrigerate in a plastic bag.  Or freeze.  To recrisp, spread out in a doughnut shape on a large plate, microwave uncovered for 30 to 60 seconds or until hot.)
  4. Bring a large pasta pot half-filled with lightly salted water to a boil.  Meanwhile, pour oil into large frying pan over low heat; add garlic.  Let slowly infuse while boiling pasta.
  5. Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente, usually from 2 to 4 minutes, then drain.  Stir olives into oil mixture then add pasta.  Toss until pasta is coated.  Sprinkle with herbs; pour in hot chicken stock.  Toss well.
  6. Serve in warmed serving bowls sprinkled with some Parmesan and numerous crispy crumbs; pass remaining Parmesan, crispy crumbs and a shaker of hot chili flakes.

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Sun-Dried Tomato Bread with Shallots and Herbs

This recipe uses some of the oil from the sun-dried tomatoes giving the bread a red tone.  There is lots of flavour in this loaf and it is easy to adjust the flavour by switching the herbs to your favourite variety.    Fresh herbs give the best flavour.  From Food & Drink Winter 2012.

1 tsp olive oil
3 large shallots
1/2 cup drained sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped
1 tbsp yeast, instant or traditional
1 3/4 cups water, just warm to the touch
1 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp oil drained from sun-drained tomatoes
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp dried oregano leaves
4 to 5 cups all purpose flour

  1. Heat olive oil in a very small frying pan over medium heat.  Add shallots; cook 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until softened.  Cool to lukewarm; stir in sun-dried tomato bits.
  2. Proof yeast by stirring warm water with sugar and sprinkling yeast overtop, then setting aside for 5 to 10 minutes.  Then stir to dissolve yeast completely.
  3. Meanwhile stir tomato oil, thyme, salt and oregano in a large mixing bowl or the bowl of stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. (I don't have this so I just use the old fashioned method of stirring by hand).  Stir in the proofed yeast mixture.  Slowly add 3 cups of flour, mixing well.
  4. Stir 1/4 cup flour into shallot mixture; add to dough, mixing in well.  Continue adding flour until dough is becoming hard to stir.  Then turn out onto a well floured work surface or continue to use stand mixer.
  5. Begin to knead dough, adding flour slowly as needed to have a soft yet well-formed dough, from 5 to 10 minutes.  All flour may not be needed.  Turn into a large generously oiled bowl; turn dough ball in bowl so all is coated with oil.  Loosely cover with a piece of plastic wrap; let rise for 1 hour or until doubled.  (For delayed baking, turn dough that has not yet risen into a large oiled mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap and chill for up to a day.  While refrigerated, dough rises slowly.  When ready to bake, go directly to step 6 to shape loaf.)
  6. Preheat oven to 375F.  Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface.  Pressing down to burst large bubbles, press out dough into a 12 inch square.  Tightly roll up into a long loaf.  Place, smooth side up on large parchment lined baking sheet.
  7. Lightly oil top of loaf with additional olive or tomato oil; loosely cover with plastic wrap.  Let rise on top of or in vicinity of warm oven (not over oven vent) for 30 to 45 minutes or until dough has doubled. (Refrigerated dough takes about 1 1/4 hours to double.)
  8. Remove plastic wrap.  Using a serrated knife gently placed on top of the loaf, draw knife gently across top of dough to form a pattern of 4 or 5 evenly spaced shallow slashes.
  9. Bake in centre of preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until golden and the smell of baking bread is very evident.  A tap on loaf bottom sounds hollow.  Take off baking sheet and cool on a rack.  Serve accompanied with a dish of garlicky olive for dipping.  

Friday, 17 January 2014

Barbecued Spareribs

A great rib recipe, easy and delicious!

1 rack of ribs
1 tsp salt
1 cup vinegar
2 cups brown sugar
2 tsp ginger
2 tsp soya sauce
1 cup ketchup
2 cups water
2 tsp cornstarch

Cook ribs in oven for 1 1/2 hours at 350F.  Bring sauce ingredients to a boil; simmer for 7 mintues.  Pour fat off ribs; add sauce.  Cook for 1 more hour.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Caicos Sunset

A really nice rum cocktail.

2 oz Appleton Rum
1 oz peach schnapps
4 oz orange juice
1 tbsp grenadine syrup

Stir rum and schnapps into a glass half filled with ice cues.  Top up with orange juice.  Add grenadine syrup and stir gently so that the "sunset" glow comes half way up the glass.

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Jamaican Jerk Pork

Loved, loved, loved this recipe!  Spicy but not crazy hot.  If you like it hotter just add a bit more of the Scotch Bonnet Peppers or a good hot sauce.  Adding some smoke to your barbecue doesn't hurt either!  It is a good idea to wear rubber gloves when handling these peppers to prevent burns (do not touch your face!)  From Food and Drink Winter 2000.

3 green onions
1 small Scotch bonnet chilli pepper, seeded and quartered
2 cloves garlic, quartered
1 inch piece fresh peeled ginger, coarsely chopped
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp chopped fresh thyme or 1/2 tsp dried
1 1/2 tsp ground all spice
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

  1. Jerk Seasoning:  Puree onion, pepper, garlic, ginger, vinegar, soy sauce, oil, brown sugar, thyme, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper in a food processor until smooth.
  2. Cut tenderloins crosswise to make 4 pieces.  Place in shallow bow and spread with jerk seasoning (I put them in a ziploc bag).  Marinate at room temperature, cover and refrigerate for up to one day.
  3. Place pork on greased grill over medium heat and cook, turning occasionally and brushing with marinade, for 12 to 16 minutes or until pork is nicely browned with just a hint of pink inside.  Transfer to a cutting board and cut into thick diagonal slices.  Serve with Pineapple-Pepper Salsa.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Planters Punch

A wonderful sunny rum punch to warm up your winter day!

2 oz amber rum
1/4 lemon juice
1/4 lime juice
3 oz orange juice
1 oz pineapple juice
1/4 oz orange liqueur
a dash of grenadine

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add all ingredients.  Shake well and strain into a collins glass filled with ice.  Garnish with a mint sprig dipped in white sugar and an orange wheel.

Monday, 13 January 2014

Pineapple Pepper Salsa

Fresh and wonderful against a spicy meat.  Make this within an hour of serving so the fruit is fresh and not watery.  From Food and Drink Winter 2000.

2 cups diced fresh pineapple
1/2 red pepper, diced
1 Jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
2 green onions sliced
1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh coriander
1 1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp honey
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Combine pineapple, peppers, green onion, coriander, ginger, lime juice, honey, salt and pepper in a bowl.  Refrigerate until serving time.  Makes about 3 cups.

Sunday, 12 January 2014

House Noodles with Chicken

Another great recipe from Food and Drink Magazine Winter 2000.  You can easily vary the vegetables, add a little extra spice or switch the chicken with pork or shrimp.  So easy and so yummy.

250 g fresh Chinese noodles
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp sesame oil

250 g boneless chicken cut in 1 inch dice
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tbsp white wine
1 egg white
1 tsp cornstarch
Pepper to taste
4 chinese mushrooms
1 tsp finely chopped ginger
1 tsp finely chopped garlic
60 g snow peas
1/2 red pepper thinly sliced
2 cups bok choy, sliced

2 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp white wine
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 tsp Chinese chili sauce
1 tsp cornstarch mixed with
1 tbsp water

2 chopped green onions
2 tbsp finely chopped coriander, optional

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil.  Add noodles and bring back to boil.  Drain noodles and stir in 1 tbsp vegetable oil and sesame oil.  Heat a non stick skillet over medium heat.  Add noodles and press into skillet.  Cook 3 minutes or until bottom is browned.  Flip over and cook second side for 2 to 3 minutes longer.  Place on cookie sheet and reheat when needed in 350F oven for 10 minutes.
  2. Marinate chicken in soy sauce, wine, egg white, cornstarch and pepper for 30 minutes.  Remove from marinade.  Bring a pot of water to boil.  Add chicken and simmer for 2 minutes or until chicken turns white.  Drain.  
  3. Soak mushrooms in hot water for 20 minutes, drain and discard water.
  4. Heat remaining 1 tbsp oil on high heat in wok or skillet.  Add ginger and garlic and stir fry for 30 seconds.  Add vegetables and stir fry until vegetables soften slightly, about 2 minutes.  Return chicken and stir together.
  5. Combine oyster sauce, wine, stock, soy and chili sauce.  Pour over chicken mixture and stir together.  Stir in cornstarch mixture, bring to boil, taste for seasoning adding extra soy if needed.  Pour over reheated noodles.  Garnish with green onions and coriander, if desired.

Saturday, 11 January 2014

Barbecued Pork

A really great recipe I got from Food and Drink Winter 2000.  A standard take-out Chinese dish that works well with mini pitas brushed with hoisin sauce and toasted in the oven.  Also great with rice or noodles.

2 - 10 oz (600g) pork tenderloins

3 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp Scotch whisky
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
2 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp 5 spice powder
2 tbsp vegetable oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp wine vinegar
1 tbsp scotch whisky
1 tsp sesame oil

  1. Place pork in large baking dish (I actually do this in a ziploc freezer bag - I find I get a more even marinade).  In medium bowl, combine marinade ingredients and pour over pork making sure it is well coated.  Marinate pork overnight or at least 6 hours refrigerated.
  2. To make glaze, heat honey, soy sauce, vinegar, scotch and sesame oil together in pot.  Stir until well combined and reserve.
  3. Preheat oven to 400F.  Place rack over foil lined baking sheet.  Add 1/2 cup water to baking dish.  Place pork on rack.  Brush with glaze.  Roast 10 minutes, turn over and brush with more glaze.  Bake another 10 minutes, glaze again and cook 5 minutes longer or until juices run clear.  
  4. Cool, thinly slice and serve on platter.  Scatter with green onions.

Friday, 10 January 2014


These are surprisingly easy to make and look fancy!  From Food and Drink Winter 2000.

1 cup water
1 tbsp sugar
1/3 cup butter
1 cup all purpose flour
5 eggs

1 1/4 cups whipping cream
8 oz (250g) white chocolate, chopped

3/4 cup whipping cream
8 oz (250g) semi sweet chocolate, chopped

  1. Preheat oven to 450F.
  2. Bring water, sugar and butter to a boil in a pot.  Turn off the heat but leave the pot on the stove and add flour.  Stir until no lumps remain.  Take the pot off the stove and beat in eggs with a wooden spoon one at a time.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.   Using a wet teaspoon or piping bag make balls about the size of a chocolate truffle.  They will double in size as they bake.  Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until balls are a nice golden brown colour.  Cool.  The recipe will make about 60 profiteroles.  Freeze the ones you do not use for another occasion.
  4. Bring the cream to a boil.  Take off heat and stir in the white chocolate until smooth.  Refrigerate until very cold.  With a whisk or electric beaters whisk mousse until it is thick.
  5. Slice profiteroles in half or use a piping bag with a small tip and fill them with the white chocolate mousse.
  6. To make ganache, bring cream to a boil and take off the heat.  Add semi sweet chocolate.  Stir until combined.
  7. To serve:  Rewarm chocolate ganache gently.  Use as a fondue-like dip for the filled profiteroles or dip them into the warm ganache and allow to dry.  The profiteroles are small so about 6 per person is probably enough.
Makes about 60 profiteroles.

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Tomato and Chickpea Salad

This is a great make ahead for lunch or even a dinner by using as a filling in a wrap.  This simple and delicious recipe is from Canadian Living Magazine Sept 2013.

3 tbs red wine vinegar
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp pepper
1 cup rinsed drained canned chickpeas
3/4 cup diced cucumber
3/4 cup diced carrot
1 green onion, chopped
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
2 tomatoes, chopped

In bowl, whisk together vinegar, oil, garlic and pepper.  Add chickpeas, cucumber, carrot, green onion and feta cheese; stir to combine.

Divide between two 3 cup air tight containers.