Monday, October 29, 2012

Cooking on Global TV

In my kitchen with Global TV's Kevin Stanfield eating a hot-from-the-oven pumpkin muffin. Watch us cooking on Food for Thought.

Pumpkin Muffins
I clipped this muffin recipe so long ago I can't remember where I got it, but I make them every year in pumpkin season.

1 cup pumpkin puree *
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup soft butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 1/4 cups flour
2 1/5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp each cinnamon, freshly grated nutmeg and freshly grated ginger
Cane sugar for sprinkling

Stir together the pumpkin and baking soda. In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Beat in eggs. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and spices. Add the flour mixture and the pumpkin mixture to the batter, stirring just until mixed. Spoon into 12 muffin tin. Sprinkle with cane sugar. Bake 375F for 20-25 minutes. 

* Turn your jack-o-lantern into pumpkin puree. Cut the hollowed out pumpkin into 8 pieces, place on a baking sheet and roast at 375F until the flesh is very soft. The time required will vary with the thickness of the pumpkin. Cool. Using a spoon, scrape the flesh off the rind. Mash with a fork or in a food processor until it forms a consistent puree. Now it's ready for baking. Also try pumpkin gnocchi.

Restaurant Review - Summer Roll

It may be winter outside but always summer inside at Summer Roll, a fresh and delightful Chinese-Vietnamese-Thai restaurant in Saskatoon's Lawson Heights. Check out my review of Summer Roll in the Star Phoenix.

Summer rolls and tea

Pad Thai - I like the stylish dinnerware

Fresh decor with a hint of mid-century modern

Not your average Asian diner.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Yes, it's winter again...

The first soup of winter - curry turkey.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Restaurant Review - German Cultural Centre

It may look like Christmas outside (yes, it snowed last night) but it is still October. Celebrate Oktoberfest at Saskatoon's German Cultural Centre. Since the former German Club was destroyed by a fire, it has reopened with a bright new building and a delicious German-inspired menu. Read my review in the Star Phoenix

Bratwurst and warm potato salad.

Braised pork belly with baked beans and horseradish cream.

The best carrot cake I've ever shared with five friends!

German memorabilia sets the mood at the
German Cultural Centre.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Restaurant Review - Amigos Cantina

What a Big Mess! And we loved it!! It was the perfect appetizer for dinner with two teenagers. Read my restaurant review of Amigos Cantina in the Star Phoenix.

The Big Mess - Not a pretty sight!

Amigos Cantina - Saskatoon's home of great TexMex
and indie bands.

Celebrating 25 years in 2013 - check Amigos' facebook page for events and specials.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Culinary Gold in Regina

Congratulations Chef Milton Rebello of the Hotel Saskatchewan, first ever champion of the Gold Medal Plates gala for Olympic athletes, held last night in Regina. Here's how the chief judge, James Chatto, summed up his entry:

Chef Milton Rebello decided to prepare local lamb, setting a perfect pink chop on each plate, the tender meat full of flavour from time spent in a ginger marinade, enhanced by a crust of mustard and crumbled pistachio. Beneath the chop we found a streak of minted pea purée and beside it a soft-textured corn and potato hash. On the other side of the plate, Chef Rebello set a sweet lentil tuile biscuit shaped like a curling maple leaf and dotted with a single lentil. In the leaf lay a ball of soft, mild goat cheese crusted with a powder formed from vegetables cooked with South Asian spices garnished with a refreshing pear chutney. The final touch was a stripe of tangy, pungent sauce made from ginger-infused cherry port. The wine match was most effective, See Ya Later Ranch’s 2010 Pinot Noir flattering the lamb but sturdy enough to stand up to the sauce and the chutney.

Being a culinary judge at Gold Medal Plates is hard work, but I'm happy to do it!! Now I'm looking forward to Saskatoon's fourth Gold Medal Plates competition on November 3.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Restaurant Review - Il Secondo

Naples is said to be the birthplace of pizza. Fortunately, we don't have to travel to Italy to check this out. Read my newspaper review of Christie's Il Secondo, Saskatoon's home of pizza Napoli.

Naples gift to the world -- Margherita Pizza.

The 800F oven behind a pyramid of San Marzano tomatoes.

If you're not hungry, just come for a coffee and a Danish.

Pleasant setting just off Broadway Ave.

Sunday, October 07, 2012

Giving thanks for...

Arrived home from a walk to the library to find a turkey on my doorstep -- plucked and ready for the oven. It was completely unexpected and a nice surprise! It's currently soaking in an aromatic salt brine in advance of its dinner date tomorrow.

Thanks to our friends Gail, Mark and the boys who raised turkeys on their acreage for the first time this year. Turkeys are hard to pluck -- way harder than chickens -- so I'm super grateful that they did all the work and I get this lovely bird!

Now I need to invite a few friends...

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

"Taste" New Cookbook

Delicious blueberry muffins from the new cookbook Taste: 
Seasonal Dishes from a Prairie Table, by CJ Katz of Regina.

It's a gorgeous and inspiring cookbook full of recipes that make the most of our prairie ingredients with a strong nod to the farmers who work so hard to bring us good food.

CJ is launching her book in Saskatoon on Sunday, Oct. 28, 1 pm, at McNally Robinson. See you there!

If you're wondering where I got these lovely wild Saskatchewan blueberries, I bought them at the Saskatoon Farmers' Market. I expect Tony will be at the market selling his frozen blueberries through the fall.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Restaurant Review - Spicy Bite

What is "Karachi Soul Food"? Head to Spicy Bite in Saskatoon and find out. Hint: the butter chicken is divine! Read more in my newspaper review of Spicy Bite

At Spicy Bite, the food is prepared with each order so the kitchen can adjust the spice level to your palate. My husband isn't crazy about butter chicken but he absoutely loved this version (top right). 

For some heat, we tried the shrimp vindaloo. Lots of spicy shrimp in a delicious sauce.

A couple of friends joined us for dinner. Order off the menu or point to the colourful wall display.

Spicy Bite is small with just five tables.
It's also popular for take-away.