Page 1




C A L G A R Y ’ S



city palate

the entertaining issue



2 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Vienna apple strudel Honey nuts

fresh Whole-grain breads

no preservatives

Christmas Stollen

authentic Brioche

Stone-oven light rye


Cream horns

delicious Christmas cookies

join us

The Cookbook Co. Cooks and Metrovino invite you to celebrate the release of Shelley Boettcher’s all-new, revised edition of UNCORKED The Definitive Guide to Alberta’s Best Wines under $25

Author Shelley Boettcher is the executive editor of Wine Access magazine, and a wine columnist.



Monday, November 12th, 6:30 pm

The Cookbook Co. Cooks 722-11th Ave SW, 403-265-6066, ext 1 $25, iNClUDES A COpy Of ThE BOOK

call to register now!

Metrovino will be pouring samples of Shelley’s favourite wines, paired with delicious food from The Cookbook Co. Cooks.

4 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Pretzels Our second location is opening November 13 in Bridgeland! 124 8th Street NE • 403.998.1877 (Across the street from the old City Bakery location)

Keeping the tradition, embracing the new. Original store: 4306 17th Avenue SE , 403.272.0383 |

contents City Palate November December 2012


28 n Upwrap This!

A baker’s dozen of wild and wonderful stuff that foodies love to give and receive. Make notes... Karen Anderson

34 n An Entertaining Menu Danish Style

Kathy Richardier

38 n Souvenir from the Périgord

The author visits his family home in France – rich in history and... ducks. Thierry Meret

42 n Winter beers

Warming beers for cold weather. Don Tse

44 n The Foodie’s Bucket List

A collection from City Palateers and City Palate readers.

48 n Creating a Stir

How Soup Sisters/Broth Brothers nourishes people in need, one bowl of soup at a time... Holly Quan

50 n Classic Roast Beast Sunday Dinner

The family always gathered for this if the creek didn’t rise or the locusts descend. Ellen Kelly

Cover artist Pablo Quiroz is a recent honours graduate from the Algonquin College Professional Illustration program. He finds his inspiration from nature, family, friends and people watching. Find his work at


Take-Home Christmas Dinners available for $25; with roast turkey breast, garlic & white cheddar mashed potatoes, seasonal vegetables, herb stuffing, chai cranberry sauce, gravy, soup, and dessert. Turkey breast and all fixings also available separately. Call 403-265-3474 to pre-order. noveMBER decemBER 2012


Fresh Produce


In-store Bakery

city palate editor Kathy Richardier ( publisher Gail Norton (

Specialty Foods Olive Oils Balsamics Catering

Olives Deli Meats &Cheeses Gift Baskets

magazine design Carol Slezak, Yellow Brick Studios ( contributing editor Kate Zimmerman contributing writers Matthew Altizer Karen Anderson Tom Firth Ellen Kelly Geoff Last Thierry Meret Holly Quan Allan Shewchuk Julie Van Rosendaal Don Tse Eloise Wall contributing photographer Carol Slezak for advertising enquiries, please contact account executives

Hot &Cold Lunches

Cappuccino Dessert Bar

Visit Lina’s for the real

ItaLIan experience. Watch for the arrival of our panettone! 2207 Centre St NE • 403.277.9166 •

Ellen Kelly ( Liz Tompkins ( Janet Henderson ( prepress/printing CentralWeb distribution Gallant Distribution Systems Inc. The Globe and Mail website management Jane Pratico ( City Palate is published 6 times per year: January-February, March-April, May-June, July-August, September-October and November-December by City Palate Inc., 722 - 11 Avenue SW Calgary, AB T2R 0E4 Fax 403-262-3322 Subscriptions are available for $35 per year within Canada and $45 per year outside Canada.

Good food, good wine, good friends... that’s BoccaVIno! (right next door to Lina’s) ask about our divine weekly chef’s Specials! 2220 Centre St NE • 403.276.2030 •

6 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Editorial Enquiries: Please email For questions or comments please contact us via our website:

contents City Palate November December 2012


9 n word of mouth

Notable culinary happenings around town

11 n eat this

What to eat in November and December Ellen Kelly

12 n drink this

Dessert wine, cider and beer Tom Firth

16 n read this

Serve up literary delights this holiday season Eloise Wall

18 n one ingredient

Kale Julie Van Rosendaal

22 n feeding people

Just because it’s home made, doesn’t mean it’s good A Collection

26 n well matched

Made-in-heaven food and wine pairings Matthew Altizer

52 n where to find us 54 n stockpot

Stirrings around Calgary

62 n 14 quick

ways with...


64 n last meal

Keep it simple and seasonal Geoff Last

66 n back burner... shewchuk on simmer

Smorg-brain Allan Shewchuk

read us online @ join us on facebook

like us to win monthly prizes!



THE GLASS IS HALF FULL. SO IS THE NEXT ONE. Rare and collectable wines in limited supply, available at exclusive prices to members. -

broek pork farm


hotchkiss farms


casual dining

big rock brewery 8

lunch. brunch. dinner. late night bites. mon - fri

• 11


sat - sun

• 10


mon - fri


- 11

mon - fri

• 11

- late

reservations welcome. perfect for any event.

-------------------------------------------------------403.452.6905 | 1127 17th ave sw | | @80thandivy

fairwinds cheese

- novEMBER decemBER 2012

poplar bluff


driview farms


sylvan star cheese




village brewery

grizzly paw brewery

- proudly supporting local suppliers

spring creek ranch -

word of mouth Notable culinary happenings around town

fresh truffles... Keith Goodale, Fifth Element Imports, is bringing fresh truffles, frozen truffles, all manner of truffles into Calgary. He sells most of his fresh to restaurant chefs, but he’s going to open a kiosk at Kingsland Market to sell his truffles and see how it works. FRESH truffles – ahhhhhh – and frozen fresh truffles.

the best way to shop!

Sample your way through the gleaming fustis of fresh olive oils and aged balsamic vinegars at Blue Door Oil & Vinegar, 8561- 8A Ave. SW, and find the ones you love the best. We did that and liked the Australian oils for their fresh flavours and medium spiciness. Other great oils are from Chile, Italy, Portugal, Spain and California. There’s lots to choose from, from mild to robust oils and beautifully balanced balsamic vinegars. Choose what you love for you and the foodies on your Christmas list, then Blue Door will bottle it for you. We found a cranberry pear white balsamic vinegar to pair with the blood orange-infused olive oil. Could be Christmas shopping central.

wine online with winestein...

hot tip for holiday bakers

Hard-to-find candied sliced ginger and coconut chips (not to mention the biggest golden raisins we’ve seen, dried strawberries and much more) are available from the Italian Store – now being re-branded Salumeria Groceria – at 5140 Skyline Way NE. The brand name is Amira and they’re well priced at about $5 for a 454 g. bag. We’ve started eating the ginger straight out of the bag! But be sure to add it to cookies, cakes, jams and chutneys before it all disappears.

beautiful chocolates

We know they’re not local, but they’re so beautiful we have to tell you about them. And you can only find them in Bow Valley Square, 255-5th Ave. SW downtown. Fanny May chocolates has a line of artisan chocolates by Norman Love. Top quality ingredients deliver flavours like vanilla cake, lemonade, chocolate-dipped strawberry, candy apple and double-shot espresso – and many more – that seduce the palate, while beautiful colours seduce the eye. Such a pretty present – add it to your list!

cut your pizza, don’t tear it

Alberta Winestein is a handy service that provides wine enthusiasts with the ability to purchase wine from different stores and wineries using an easy-to-use web site, so that their wine can be delivered at work or at home. Wine and cheese pairings are also available for delivery – how easy is that for your holiday entertaining! Go to for all the delicious details.

Found at Lina’s Italian Market, a clever, convenient pizza cutter by Epicurean. It’s smart, because it’s one piece with a sharp, curved edge, so it cuts your pizzas with a rolling action – much better than the metal, jagged wheel that tears as much pizza as it cuts. This one does it with a clean sweep in “one fell swoop.” And the Epicurean pizza peel will scoop your pizza out of the oven, quickety-quick. You love pizza, you need these. Great gift ideas too!

“like us” winners Congrats to the winners! The winner of the August “like us” prize was Glenda Middleton who won a Hotel Blackfoot $125 poolside patio gift certificate. The winner of the September prize was Amanda Dillabough, who won two “fill-n-go” growlers of beer – 1.89 litre bottles – from Inglewood Wine Merchant. “Like us” on facebook to win.

vancouver chef to compete in the bocuse d’or In January, the best chefs from 24 countries will convene in Lyon, France, for the most demanding culinary competition in the world, the Bocuse d’Or, Canada’s contribution to this high-octane event is Alex Chen, culinary “architect” at Moxie’s Grill & Bar, fresh from the exec chef position at The Beverly Hills Hotel in Hollywood. Moxie’s is the title sponsor of Bocuse d’Or Team Canada. Bocuse d’Or Canada supports Breakfast for Learning that helps communities start and sustain successful school nourishment programs.

good for salads and cocktails Savour Fine Foods in Inglewood carries a tomato vinegar – Emmanuelle Baillard Secrets de Cuisine, from France – that’s deliciously mellow for a vinegar. Use it with walnut or hazelnut oil on your salads. Since it’s tasty right out of the bottle, we thought it would make a great cocktail. We call it Tomato Tease. Shake 2 oz. Skyy ginger-infused vodka with 1 oz. tomato vinegar and a squeeze of lemon juice to taste over ice. Strain into a chilled martini glass and garnish with a small wheel of tomato or a small grape or cherry tomato on the rim. This is one of the best cocktails we’ve ever had – tease your taste buds, they’ll love it! In fact, you’ll need one bottle of this for your salads and one bottle for your drinks.

Fine Cheese F Fin

established 2000

Cheese Platters and Exquisite Gifts 1017 16th Avenue SW



Food that Nourishes the Soul 1006 17th Avenue SW noveMBER decemBER 2012



Real Food Served for Breakfast & Lunch

and coming soon... dinner too!

House-cured, hand-cut bacon Delicious gluten-free options Locally roasted 15 Kilo Coffee Indoor heated waiting room

1420 - 9 Avenue SE in Historic Inglewood


Local free-range eggs Home-made yogurt Hand-made burgers Booking Christmas events

403.234.8885 novEMBER decemBER 2012

eat this

Ellen Kelly

What to eat in November and December Illustrations by Pierre Lamielle

All is not lost! There are still culinary wonders to be found even in the depths of winter. It’s time to wax creative and take advantage of our own easily stored squash as well as imported delights such as pomegranates and mandarins. According to Jane Grigson, the pomegranate is “an unrewarding fruit.” That may be true enough for some, but like the artichoke, you can’t beat it for sheer fun! Give a small child a split pomegranate, five minutes of instruction and know where they will be for at least an hour. While accessing said pomegranate does require determination, your efforts will be rewarded with tiny, sweet/tart seeds that deliver a taste and visual impact unlike any other fruit. The effect that just a scattering of these delightful rubyfaceted jewels has over salads, moles, and pork or chicken dishes is unparalleled. There are many recipes calling for pomegranate juice, but the fresh pomegranate’s true appeal is in its flair for garnish. Buy a bottle of pomegranate molasses for marinades and such – it’s lovely.

BUY: Purchase fruits that are heavy for their size with fresh pliable skin; avoid any that have skin that is broken, hard or brittle. Pomegranates don’t ripen after they’re picked. TIPS: The easiest and least messy way I’ve found to separate the seeds from the pith is as follows: Insert the tip of a chef’s knife into the crown of the pomegranate and twist, thereby splitting the fruit into pieces. Over a bowl, begin breaking the seeds out of the whitish pith by bending the skin inside-out, pulling the membranes away from the seeds. With just a little prodding, the seeds will fall into the bowl. Pick through the seeds and remove any bits of pith. The seeds are best well chilled. DID YOU KNOW? There are many stories that feature this exotic fruit. My favourite is a Greek myth that has Bacchus turning a hopeful nymph into a pomegranate because she coveted a crown. The crown-like calyx on the pomegranate is testimony to her folly.

When the dense, carotene-laden flesh of a winter squash is called for in soups, ravioli fillings, risotti, stews, or even pies, I’m invariably drawn to the peachy-pink, smooth skinned butternut. Pound for pound, this elongated pear-shaped winter squash really delivers. A favourite fall soup showcases this versatile vegetable wonderfully. Begin by heating about 6 to 8 cups of very rich chicken or vegetable broth. Prepare the butternut squash by splitting it lengthwise down the middle and removing the seeds and membranes. Salt and pepper generously, drizzle with olive oil and stuff loosely with lots of sage and thyme sprigs. Lay cut-side down on a well-oiled, foil-covered baking sheet. Bake the squash at 375 F until easily pierced with a skewer, about 40 to 60 minutes, depending on its size. Set aside. To make croutons, cut a day-old loaf of sourdough bread into large cubes and toast in the oven for 10 minutes or so until they just start to colour. Melt a good amount of butter in a large sauté pan and toss the croutons until well covered with butter. Return the cubes to the oven and toast another 10 minutes, until golden. While the squash bakes, add a can of drained cannellini beans and a bunch of shredded Swiss chard to the already heated stock and bring to a simmer. Cut the cooled squash into cubes similar in size to the croutons and add, along with the herbs, to the broth. Be careful not to break up the squash cubes. To serve, ladle the soup into shallow bowls and garnish with the croutons and shavings of Parmigiano-Reggiano.

The season starts as early as September, but the mandarins we see around Christmas are the best – wonderful eaten out of hand. Make a citrus curd by substituting dark orange tangerines for the more conventional lemons. Grate the zest from 3 firm tangerines. Juice enough tangerines to yield 1 c. juice. Combine the zest, juice, 6 T. lemon juice, 1 c. sugar, 1/2 lb. unsalted butter, cut into pieces, and 1/2 t. sea salt in the top of a double boiler. Heat slowly over simmering water until sugar and butter are melted, stirring the while. Whisk 6 whole eggs and 4 egg yolks together in a bowl. Temper the eggs with a little of the hot orange/sugar mixture, then slowly pour, whisking, into the saucepan. Cook over low heat, constantly whisking and scraping with a spatula, until the curd thickens, about 10 to 15 minutes. Strain the curd to remove any bits of cooked egg, cover with clear wrap pressed to the surface and refrigerate for a couple of hours or overnight. To serve, fill tiny pastry shells with curd and top with a dollop of whipped cream tarted up with a splash of Cointreau. A sliver of candied orange peel makes the perfect garnish.

BUY: Choose mandarin oranges that are heavy in the hand. Some have naturally loose skin, but avoid any that are puffy; they are likely overripe. Avoid fruits that have soft spots or watery areas. TIPS: Most mandarins don’t keep very well because of their thin skins; a week at room temperature is about as long as they can be stored. These oranges are designed to eat out of hand, but the juice is delightful on its own, or mixed with other citrus fruit; the segments are lovely tossed in salads; clementines and Minneolas make excellent marmalades and candied peel. DID YOU KNOW? There’s quite a convoluted family tree where mandarins are concerned. In brief, tangerines, clementines, satsumas, Temple oranges, tangelos, Minneolas, tangors, and honey tangerines are all mandarins or are related to a mandarin somewhere down the line. Some are very sweet, some are tart, others are dark orange and many have few or no seeds. This is the time to experiment and discover your favourite.

BUY: Choose a squash heavy for its size with hard skin free of blemishes or soft, moldy spots. TIPS: Dealing with a large heavy winter squash can be daunting. Cut a shallow 4- to 5- inch slice off the side of the vegetable, then always make sure a flat cut is resting on a flat board to stabilize the squash. DID YOU KNOW? Butternut squash is only one of many winter squash. Although they come in a dazzling array of shapes, sizes and colours, the sweet flesh tends to be very similar in taste as well as texture (with the exception of spaghetti squash). noveMBER decemBER 2012


drink this

Tom Firth

Dessert wine, cider and beer

Dessert wine has never been a humble wine. It’s been famous, flamboyant and fêted through most of its history. It’s been a staple of fine meals and even finer desserts since wine makers figured out how to make sweet wine. The methods by which sweet wines can be made are almost endless. In most wine production, the natural sugars in the grapes are converted into alcohol by yeast, until the rising alcohol level kills the yeast or stops its action, and only a small amount of sugar remains in what is now wine. Some strains of yeast are hardier than others, converting more or less sugar into alcohol. Some grapes are left on the vine longer so that their sugar content is so great that not all of it can be converted, and in some cases, the duration of fermentation is manipulated to stop the action of the yeast at a certain time, leaving the desired amount of sweetness in the wine. These “sticky wines” – if you spill some, you’ll know why they’re sometimes called this – have always commanded high prices and used to be staples of any good collector’s wine cellar. People are hard-wired to like sugar, and sweet wines also tend to age well. But throughout most of the history of wine, sugar was a rarity on the table or in your glass. Thus, sweet wine was sought after, and was sufficiently rare that the average person wouldn’t have access to it. The ready availability of cheap sugar over the last century has contributed to the waning interest in dessert wines. For most of recorded history, honey was the sweetener of choice. Crystallized sugar first appeared in the 5th century, and by the 18th century, it was still considered a luxury for the average household. These days, global production of sugar is around 170 million tonnes annually, which works out to about 24 kg per person per year. Since sugar is added to many foods, from low-fat yogurt to fruit juice, we no longer need to look to wine for a sweet fix. That development has swept sweet wines from their pedestal, making them one of the most unappreciated wine styles on the market today. Although sweet wines such as icewine are not for “every day,” when well made, these delicious treats belong on your table.

Icewine If you need another reason to be grateful for the Canadian winter aside from great skiing, look no further than icewine (in Canada it’s one word). It’s made from grapes frozen on the vine, which are picked and pressed while still frozen, and each grape yields only a tiny drop of highly concentrated sweet juice. Eiswein has been made for centuries in Germany and Austria; Canada’s virtually guaranteed freezing-cold winters meant that we became good at making icewine very quickly. In British Columbia and Ontario, nearly 890,000 litres of icewine were produced in 2011. Selling at the wineries or on retail shelves for $40 to several hundred dollars per 375ml bottle, icewine is big business for many wineries. With imitation the sincerest form of flattery, counterfeit Canadian icewines often appear in their largest overseas markets, China and Southeast Asia. This has led to trademarks and guarantees with respect to the origin of genuine icewines. The very best icewines are made from riesling grapes, which have the acidity to balance some of the sugars, with great bottlings also made from vidal, cabernet franc, and other grape varieties. Icewine is best enjoyed in small glasses or flutes, served very cold. It perfectly complements desserts with lemon or lime flavours or garnishes, peaches, foie gras and shortbread cookies.

12 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Late-Harvest Wines Late-harvest wines are often subject to the “noble rot,” Botrytis cinera, a fungus that, under certain conditions, perforates the skins of wine grapes. That allows some of the juice to evaporate and concentrate the sugars, permitting the development of unique flavours. Most famously, the dessert wines of Bordeaux hail from the region of Sauternes, where noble rot is responsible for these world-renowned wines. Typically a blend of the grapes sauvignon blanc and semillon, sauternes is produced in small, labour-intensive quantities and isn’t made every year. The best sauternes can age for decades. They’re luscious with custards, blue cheeses, apricots, pâté and walnuts. Sauternes should be served cool to cold, and in a small glass. Many believe that the best late-harvest wines come from France, but excellent examples also come from a number of countries including Chile, Canada, and Australia. Dessert wines have a bit of a reputation for leaving you with a bad hangover if you drink a lot. But drinking moderately is easy: a 375ml half-bottle easily serves four, but will provide a modest taste for six or more people. If you don’t finish the bottle, most dessert wines will keep for a few days and are tasty with an omelette at breakfast along with your orange juice.

Non-wine dessert sweeties: Dessert Beer

Candela Lounge | 1919 4th Street SW | 403 719 0049 | twitter @CandelaCalgary

You don’t have to be a cicerone (a beer “sommelier”) to pair a good brew with dessert, but we’re not talking about reaching for a Coors Light when sweets are served. Imperial stouts often have deep chocolate and espresso characters, making them suitable for… chocolate and espresso-flavoured desserts. Lambics – beers made with fruits such as cherries and peaches – can also complement chocolate as well as fruit-based desserts. Some beers, such as English ales, can feature slightly oxidative characters – typically nutty or caramelized aromas and flavours – well suited to bread puddings and similar desserts. Find a shop with a good selection, and don’t be afraid to say what kind of beers you like and what you’re planning to serve with them. Keep in mind that many premium beers are seasonal, so you might not find that cool-flavoured brew yearround. (Premium beer doesn’t have to be high-alcohol Belgian Trappist-style ales, despite the fact that many experts claim they are the best.) Beer nuts are even worse than wine lovers when it comes to the correct glassware to serve with each type of beer. If you don’t have a selection of fancy beer glasses, use short-stemmed wine glasses with a basic tulip shape or straightsided lowball-style glasses.

Ice Cider Ice cider is another great Canadian option for your next dessert. The best generally come from “la belle province,” Quebec. The best ice ciders are produced from a variety of special apples not normally found in the produce section at the supermarket. One of the strengths of ice ciders is that their natural tartness helps to balance their sweetness so they’re rarely cloying despite satisfying the sweet tooth. Cider apples are picked late and are often allowed to freeze on the tree. Then, they’re pressed and fermented. Since it takes six to eight kilos of apples to make a single half-bottle (375ml) of ice cider, the business of making this style of cider is taken seriously. Like desset wines, ice cider is best enjoyed well chilled in a small glass or flute. The flavours complement apple-based desserts –surprise! – and can hold their own against bleu cheese and chèvre, bold cheddars, foie gras, pâtés and terrines.

There are wines for every occasion, and a dessert wine, or a cider or beer can be the perfect complement to a special meal. continued on page 14 noveMBER decemBER 2012


drink this Dessert wine, cider and beer continued from page 13


A few interesting selections to try this holiday season...


Pictured from left to right:

De Bortoli 2008 Noble One Botrytis Semillon $32 (375ml) Possibly the definitive botrytis-afflicted wine outside of sauternes. Rich, slightly woody, with floral and citrus tones, this is full-blown dessert wine to drink now or allow to age. 1126 memorial drive nw, calgary | 403.228.4442 |

Gehringer Brothers 2011 Minus 9 Ehrenfelser Icewine $59 (375ml) An icewine made from the little-known and -planted ehrenfelser grape. The nose is lemon and lime with subtle spices, while the palate is creamy, with tropical fruit flavours and a spicy-sweet finish. Tinhorn Creek 2011 Oldfield Series Kerner Icewine $23 (200ml) Kerner is not a common grape variety in icewine, but Tinhorn Creek has done great things with it. Intensely floral with bright tropical fruits, this is easy to enjoy because it’s not too sweet. Domaine Pinnacle 2009 Ice Cider $32 (375ml) Rife with apple fruits, but you’ll detect honey, lime, and even apple pie filling aromas. Crisp apple flavours make for a vibrant glass of cider.

Fuller’s 1845 $5 (500ml) An English strong ale – but not too strong – that’s malty and toffee scented, with earthy and nutty flavours and a little espresso on the finish. Serve cool, but not cold. St. Ambroise Special Reserve Imperial Stout $6 (341ml) From the world-renowned McAuslan brewery in Quebec, this stout is deep and chocolatey, with espresso, molasses, vanilla and more. Smooth and smoky, it’s a beauty. Errazuriz 2010 Late-Harvest Sauvignon Blanc $17 (375ml) One of the few really good buys in the dessert-wine market, this lateharvest wine is packed with lemon, honey and a little spice, not too sweet, with good acidity.

Sea Cider Rumrunner $19 (750ml) An organic cider from Vancouver Island that’s aged in rum barrels. Rumrunner tastes of toffee, apple and honey, with a hint of molasses. Tom Firth reviews and writes about wine for Wine Access magazine and other fine publications. Follow him on twitter, @cowtownwine.

14 novEMBER decemBER 2012



h t h t i e w n t e w u

In with the


The best traditions are the ones that happen at home. And if you ask us, tradition starts in the kitchen. This year, have a holiday that harkens back to the good ol’ days. Where the cooking starts as soon as the gifts are unwrapped, and with recipes that have passed hands for three generations, and counting. Where the smell of orange and cloves, mulled apple cider, warm baked bread and fresh pumpkin pie, can turn a house into a home. From turkeys and hams to stuffing and brioche, as well as our annual holiday guide, in our markets you’ll find everything you need to serve up a happy holiday.

Celebrate the season at home with Sunterra. noveMBER decemBER 2012


e s th



e erf

read this


if tg

ke a M

Need Christmas gift ideas for fervent foodies? Though kitchen gadgets, tea towels and aprons are welcomed, this year give your favourite cook a good read to curl up with while they wait for the bread to rise. Just out this year, on the centenary of her birth, Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child, by Bob Spitz, is an intimate, well-documented portrait. From her days as a top-secret wartime researcher for the OSS (today’s CIA) and her culinary revelations in post-war France, to her debut (at the age of 50) on the award-winning PBS series, The French Chef, Child’s life is at once an epic adventure and a coming-of-age story. The iconic Julia Child is transformed into a warm, funny, whip-smart, incorrigible and real woman. Cooks of all ages will devour the tantalizing detail and delicious anecdotes.

Pour your heart out.


Canada’s largest monthly wine club.


Join Chef Gabrielle Hamilton on a tumultuous 25-year journey in Blood, Bones & Butter. Travel through myriad kitchens in many countries, traversing a long road that ends in New York where she opens her acclaimed restaurant Prune. Hamilton, who has an MFA from the University of Michigan, writes an inspiring, gut-wrenching account of her adventures in beautiful language. Food critic Mimi Sheraton calls Hamilton’s writing every bit as delectable and satisfying as her food. Anthony Bourdain predicts Hamilton’s story will be an enduring classic, inspiring generations of young cooks. Watch for the movie adaptation starring Gwyneth Paltrow. Adam Gopnik, the humorous New Yorker essayist, weaves together the history, culture and significance of food in The Table Comes First: Family, France and the Meaning of Food. Gopnik contends that who and what is at the table – family, friends, lovers, good conversation – is more important than what is put on the table. While celebrating the archetypal French dinner with its progression from the first sip of wine to the last jolt of coffee, Gopnik philosophizes about the history of gastronomy and its effect on everyday lives. Reading Gopnik is like conversing with the ideal dinner guest. Anyone who loves books and food will love Eating: A Memoir by Jason Epstein. The legendary Random House editor and co-founder of the New York Review of Books gives us a glimpse into the best eateries and the most intriguing personalities of the 20th century. Each chapter is complete with recipes, some from Epstein’s own kitchen, and others from world-famous restaurants. Dine like southern Italians with the recipes from Rao’s in Harlem. Eat lobster fra diavolo with Norman Mailer on Cape Cod, or spend Thanksgiving in Miami with Wolfgang Puck and Craig Claiborne. Epstein’s personal touches and creative approach will have home cooks scurrying off to the kitchen to replicate his meals.

Willow Park Village 10816 Macleod Trail South | 403.278.1220 Compleat Cook Cooking Classes 3400 – 114 Avenue SE | 403.253.4831

16 novEMBER decemBER 2012

The School of Essential Ingredients is a debut novel set in the whimsical cooking school run by Lillian, a gentle but passionate chef. As she guides her students in the preparation and techniques of creating memorable dishes, they find recipes for life through the expertise they acquire in the kitchen. Erica Bauermeister’s prose seduces your senses and pleases your palate. It leaves you with food for thought – is mastering the skills essential for making extraordinary meals any different from attaining the understanding and resiliency necessary to handle our everyday lives?

Eloise Wall

Serve up literary delights this holiday season

‘tis better to give than to receive but sharing might be best of all.

For the vegetarian on your gift list, nothing could be better than the Rebar: Modern Food Cookbook. Written by Audrey Alsterberg and Wanda Urbanowicz, who started the namesake restaurant in Victoria’s heritage Bastion Square, this compendium has been around since 2001 but continues to be the go-to source for vegans, lacto-vegetarians and anyone else looking for a healthy and delicious meat-free meal. It is complete with mouth-watering pictures and chock full of creative tips for tweaking recipes and adding personal touches. This is the cookbook most presented as gifts by cooks. In 2003, seasoned foreign correspondent Annia Ciezadlo married Newsday’s Middle East bureau chief. She left her home in New York and spent the next six years living in Baghdad and Beirut. Day of Honey: A Memoir of Food, Love, and War was called the least political and the most intimate and valuable book to come out of the Iraq war by the New York Times. A captivating love story, the prose will have you laughing out loud as Ciezadlo describes her relationship with her mother- in-law, and moved to tears as she relates the struggles of everyday life in the war-torn Middle East. Chefs will love the appendix of rare family recipes. The Wednesday Chef, Luisa Weiss, began blogging about food in 2005. It didn’t take long for Gourmet magazine to recognize it as one of their favourite food sites. Viking published her first book, a food memoir called My Berlin Kitchen: (A Love Story with Recipes). As a young girl, Luisa shuffled back and forth between her father in Boston and her Italian mother in Berlin. Her story is written with brutal honesty and compelling emotion. The recipes, found at the end of each chapter, are comforting and mostly of German seasonal fare. I’ll never roast peppers any other way, and that alone is worth the price of the book.

VICTORIA SPIRITS Handmade in small batches with love in BC — Vic Gin is Canada's first premium gin.

Since opening the doors of Vij’s Indian Restaurant in Vancouver in 1994, Vikrim Vij and his wife, Meeru Dhalwala, have accrued accolades and awards. Their cuisine incorporates the fabulous spices of India with the freshest local meats, seafood and produce. Their cookbook, Vij’s Elegant and Inspired Indian Cuisine (2006), has become an indispensable resource for cooks the world over. In 2010, Vij followed up with Vij’s at Home: Relax, Honey. This compilation of recipes is for the busy home cook, offering the spicy, savoury and sweet flavours Vij has made famous. Most dishes can go from prep to table in forty-five minutes to an hour. Either of these books is a great buy for both the first-time and experienced cooks.

The food people in your life will appreciate any of these – they are gifts that will be opened again and again. Eloise Wall is a Calgary freelance and fiction writer. She can be found at

Now Open • 515 8th Avenue SW • noveMBER decemBER 2012



one ingredient

Julie Van Rosendaal


FINE MEATS Fresh, fabulous charcuterie fare... Order your turkey ahead – free-range and free of hormones and antibiotics – for your Holiday Entertaining. 403.861.8719 | 403.861.8718 Find Regina’s in the CRossRoads MaRket

Say CheeSe fromagerie

What could be better than a one-of-a-kind Cheese Basket for your holiday gift giving? Say Cheese & glengarry fine Cheese have teamed up to offer a tantalizing allCanadian Luxury Cheese Basket featuring a selection of Glengarry’s finest cheeses. Order yours today! Azzurro di Bufalo, photo by Sean Dennie

SaY CHeeSe fromagerie

403 819 6706

Find say cheese in the crossroads Market

Your stop for holiday entertaining AND gift-giving.

A true crossroads.

Farm Fresh City Central

Open Year Round * Free Parking *

Farmers Market

Friday, Saturday & Sunday

Crafts & Collectibles Saturday & Sunday 1235 - 26 Avenue SE • 403-291-5208

18 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Even as grown-ups, we’re told to eat more greens. Of all the things you can eat, dark green growing things are probably the healthiest. When I think of leafy greens, what pops to mind is not the fragile spring mix you buy pre-washed and ready to pile on your plate, nor sprigs of parsley or watercress. I think of the hard-core greens, like kale – greens that mean business. Kale is the tough, leathery cousin – once or twice removed – of spinach and chard. It can be hard to love. It takes its role as a leafy green seriously, holding its own against the elements – and the heat of the oven – far better than its relatives. Kale is actually a member of the brassica family, along with broccoli and Brussels sprouts. If you think of it as a frilly cabbage, you’ll understand its slightly rubbery texture and bitter temperament a little better. Its hardiness comes in handy in cold, dry climates and sporadic growing seasons – this summer, it was the only thing left standing in my garden after a barrage of racquetball-sized hail. But its resilience makes it tough on the jaws to eat raw, and a raw kale leaf can “suck” the moisture out of your mouth as you chew. Though it’s as versatile in the kitchen as other leafy greens, kale needs a little help to coax it towards edibility. Which is not to say it shouldn’t be served straight from the garden, but if you do skip the cooking part, choose smaller, more tender leaves, which are more palatable if finely shredded, unless you’re feeding a die-hard raw kale lover. Wandering around a farmers’ market, you’ll come across bunches of kale in a variety of shapes and sizes, some with leaves that are long-stemmed and spindly, others with leaves that are larger in diameter than an outstretched hand. Some are long and smooth-edged, like romaine (this variety is often referred to as Tuscan kale) and others come adorned with huge ruffles (sometimes known as curly kale) or with sparser, dustier leaves and purple stalks (Russian kale). Typically sold as bundled leaves rather than in a tight, unyielding head, kale keeps well in the fridge for at least a week. Even if you forget it and it begins to wilt, once cooked, the finished product will be no different than it would have been in its fresher incarnation. Kale is often simmered in water before it’s used in a recipe, but it can most often be cooked along with the other ingredients, retaining its nutrients as it “relaxes” into the dish. To wilt kale in a hot pan, you’ll need not only heat but moisture, as it is unwilling to give up its own. Add a splash of water, stock or wine that will quickly cook off as the greens cook down. A soup or stew provides plenty of warmth and liquid to help tenderize kale leaves, which keep their shape and don’t disintegrate as spinach is wont to do. Portuguese sausage, potato and kale soup is a classic, as is Italian ham, kale and white bean soup. Shred kale and add it by the handful to minestrone or chicken noodle soups to boost vitamin C

Kale Caesar Slaw with Crispy Prosciutto

Spaghetti with Garlic, Chickpeas and Braised Kale

Creamed Kale with Bacon Béchamel

and beta-carotene. A torn leaf or two hides well in a dark berry smoothie; similarly, it can be finely chopped and simmered in stew, chili or lasagna if the goal is to sneak greens by somebody undetected. To get to know kale is to get to love it – as with any ingredient, the more you use it, the more uses you’ll find for it. There are few better (or healthier) quick meals than a plate of kale that’s been sautéed with oil and garlic and topped with an egg. (Push the kale aside in the pan, and crack the egg in.) Tough love can be rewarding.

Kale Caesar Slaw with Crispy Prosciutto Finely shredded raw kale makes a delicious salad, and holds up well to a tangy Caesar dressing and crisped prosciutto, which is thinner, leaner and saltier than regular strips of bacon. (They look great, too.) Dressing: 1/2 c. mayonnaise 1/4 c. finely grated parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving 1 garlic clove, peeled 1 T. lemon juice

Rinse the kale, pull out the tough ribs and coarsely chop or tear apart the leaves. Add the kale to the pan. Scoop about 1/4 c. of the pasta water from the pot and add it to the pan. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook the kale for about 10 minutes, until tender. Drain the spaghetti, reserving a bit of the cooking liquid. Add the spaghetti to the kale mixture. Add the lemon juice and a few spoonfuls of the reserved cooking liquid and toss to combine. Add the chickpeas and a handful of parmesan cheese and toss everything until well combined –- add more cooking liquid if you like it saucier. Season the dish with salt and pepper and serve immediately. Serves 4 to 6.

Creamed Kale with Bacon Béchamel


Kale and bacon are a magical combination – the drippings from the latter cook down and flavour the former. A quick béchamel (white) sauce transforms this duo into a dish similar to creamed spinach, only better. Inspired by Gourmet magazine.

1 kale head

4 - 6 slices bacon, chopped

olive or canola oil, for cooking

2 T. flour

8 - 10 strips of prosciutto

1-1/2 c. milk

Combine the dressing ingredients in a blender or the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth, scraping down the sides. Add a bit of water or extra lemon juice if it seems too thick.

2 T. minced shallot or onion (optional)

2 t. red wine vinegar 1 t. grainy Dijon mustard a good grinding of black pepper

Thinly slice the kale, discarding the tough ribs. Add a drizzle of oil to a large skillet set over medium-high heat and cook the prosciutto, turning as necessary until it’s crisp. In a large bowl, toss the kale and dressing, then divide the salad among the plates and top with strips of prosciutto and extra grated parmesan cheese. Serves 4 to 6.

Spaghetti with Garlic, Chickpeas and Braised Kale Who says spaghetti needs to be topped with a pound of ground? This quick and garlicky kale and chickpea combo comes together in the time it takes to cook dry pasta. From Spilling the Beans, by Julie Van Rosendaal and Sue Duncan. 1/2-1 lb. dry spaghetti canola or olive oil, for cooking butter, for cooking 1 large onion, chopped Recipe photos by Julie Van Rosendaal

Put a big pot of water on to boil, and cook the spaghetti. Meanwhile, heat a generous drizzle of oil in a heavy skillet, add a pat of butter (if you like) and sauté the onion and chickpeas for about 10 minutes, until soft and starting to turn golden. Add the garlic and cook for a few more minutes. Scoop out the chickpeas and set them aside in a bowl (don’t worry about scooping the onions too, you just want to keep your chickpeas somewhat crisp).

1 19 oz. can chickpeas, rinsed and well drained 1 garlic head, cloves peeled and chopped 1 small bunch of kale juice of half a lemon grated parmesan cheese salt and pepper, to taste

1 bay leaf (optional) 6 black peppercorns (optional) 1 large bunch kale or beet greens canola or olive oil or butter, for cooking 1 onion, chopped 1/2 c. heavy cream 2 garlic cloves, minced pinch red chile flakes salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a large, heavy skillet, cook the bacon until crisp over medium-high heat; remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Reserve the bacon fat. To make the béchamel, whisk the flour into the bacon fat. Whisk in the milk, and if using them, the shallot, bay leaf and peppercorns. Bring the mixture to a boil, whisking often. Let it simmer for a few minutes, and then pour it into a bowl and reserve. If you added the bay leaf and peppercorns, scoop them out or pour the mixture through a sieve. Wipe out the pan. Roughly chop the greens, ditching the tough ribs. Heat a drizzle of oil and/or butter in the pan and sauté the onion over medium-high heat for 5 minutes, until soft and starting to turn golden. Add the kale (or beet greens) and cook it until it starts to wilt. Add the cream, garlic, chile flakes and béchamel, and stir to combine well. Cover and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, until the greens are tender. Season the dish with salt and pepper and serve with the cooked bacon scattered on top. Serves 4 to 6. continued on page 20 noveMBER decemBER 2012


one ingredient Kale continued from page 19

Kale Chips Preheat the oven to 400°F. Wash the kale, dry it well and tear it into big bite-sized pieces, tossing out the thick stems. Spread it on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with canola oil; toss the kale with your hands to coat it well, then sprinkle with salt. Rearrange it in a single layer and roast for about 10 minutes, until it’s crisp and starting to turn golden. (Watch the chips closely – if your oven is too hot they can burn quickly!)

Kale and Quinoa Salad with Cranberries and Feta Adapted from a recipe on the food blog Beyond (the Plate) that was inspired by Dorie Greenspan’s Chard Stuffing, this sturdy red and green salad is perfect for the holidays, particularly if you’re charged with taking a side dish to a meal. Quantities of each ingredient are up to you – adjust them according to your taste. The recipe doubles easily if you’re feeding a crowd.

1 T. butter 3 - 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped 4 large thin-skinned potatoes

olive oil, for cooking and drizzling

2/3 c. ricotta cheese

1 medium shallot or a small chunk of purple onion, peeled and thinly sliced

1/4 c. butter, melted

1/2 c. crumbled feta 1/4 c. pine nuts or 1/2 c. chopped walnuts, toasted juice of half a lemon

Cook the quinoa in a medium-sized pot of boiling water for 12 to 14 minutes, until just tender and the germ separates, making a little curly Q. Drain well in a fine sieve, then return to the pot (off the heat, but still warm), add the cranberries, cover the pot with a tea towel and the lid, and set aside to cool. In a medium skillet set over medium-high heat, heat a drizzle of oil and sauté the shallot or onion for a couple minutes, until soft. Remove the tough ribs from the kale, stack the leaves and thinly slice them. Add the kale to the pan and cook for about 5 minutes, or until wilted. (If they need help, add a small splash of water to the pan to create steam, and cover for a few minutes.) Season the kale with salt and add a pinch of chile flakes. If you added water, remove the lid and cook until the moisture has cooked off. novEMBER decemBER 2012

1 T. olive or canola oil, plus extra for the pan

salt and pepper

pinch dried chile flakes (optional)


1 large bunch kale

1/3 c. dried cranberries

salt and pepper • 403.457.5910

This galette is subtle, with garlic and ricotta; try an Indian-spiced version by ditching the ricotta and spiking the kale with ginger and curry powder or garam masala as it cooks.

1 c. quinoa, rinsed well and drained

1 small bunch of kale

Exquisite custom-made cutting boards, butcher blocks, counter tops and serving boards. Check us out for Revol France, Nesmuk Knives, Forge de Laguiole, French Copper and much more! Located in Historic Inglewood at 1336 - 9th Avenue SE.

Potato, Kale and Ricotta Galette

Add the kale to the quinoa, along with the feta and pine nuts or walnuts. Drizzle the salad with oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss. Add the lemon juice, toss again and serve. Serves 4 to 6.

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Rinse the kale under warm water, then discard the tough stems and coarsely chop the leaves. In a large, heavy skillet heat the oil and butter over mediumhigh heat. Add the kale, garlic and a couple spoonfuls of water. Sprinkle the mixture with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, for a few minutes, until the kale has wilted and any excess moisture has cooked off. Set aside in a bowl. Slice the potatoes crosswise as thin as you can, using a mandolin if you have one, or a very sharp knife. Drizzle a large ovenproof skillet with oil and layer a third of the potato slices, overlapping them, on the bottom. Spread half the kale over the potatoes, and scatter ricotta over them. Layer another third of the potatoes, the remaining kale and ricotta, and top with the remaining potatoes. Bake the galette for 30 to 40 minutes, until the top is golden and the potatoes are tender. Cut it into wedges to serve. Serves 6 to 8.


Stephen Avenue is ready to sizzle at SAIT Polytechnic’s new Culinary Campus. Built for amateur cooks and professional chefs alike, this state-of-the-art facility will bring hands-on culinary instruction to the heart of downtown Calgary. For a full listing of individual, professional and corporate team building programs, and market hours for meals to go, visit today.

2nd floor Scotia Centre 226, 230 8th Ave SW, Calgary

in association with the

naramata Bench Wineries association presents

Flavours oF Bc’s naramata Bench

PROVOKE YOUR PALATE meet the Winemakers sample 40 Wines

FeBruary 28, 2013

VIP TasTIng | 6Pm PublIc TasTIng | 7Pm

tickets From


Bird tickets only $85 savour Farm Fresh Food early ava i l a B l e u n t i l d e c e m B e r 3 1 , 2 0 1 2 events noveMBER decemBER 2012


feeding people

A collection

Just because it’s home made, doesn’t mean it’s good Over dinner the other night, a few of my friends were laughing about how people often say nostalgically about a particular dish, “Ahhhhh, just like mom used to make.” One woman piped up that not all mom’s cooking was good. Then she told the story of her mom’s “mock pizza” – the family’s Friday night “treat.” It consisted of white Wonder-type bread squished flat with a rolling pin – the pizza “crust” – topped with a layer of ketchup for the tomato sauce and thinly sliced wieners playing the part of salami. Cheese was sprinkled on top and the “pizza” was baked. Lovely! Just because mom made it, doesn’t mean it’s good. My mom, on the other hand, was a great cook, so home made was always good in our house. We asked a few of our friends to take a second look at the reality of home cooking.

Gail Norton, City Palate

It’s funny how food memories have the ability to transport you back in time and make you relive the taste of a dish. When the fare is delicious, this is a wonderful experience. With dishes that left an iffy taste in your mouth, this blast from the past can make you feel like you’re 10 years old again, back at the family dinner table taking slow, hesitant bites of one of mom’s new “creations.” I don’t know who got the idea that baking pieces of bologna was chic, but my mother got wind of it and we all suffered. She put the thick, greasy rounds of mystery meat into muffin tins, squished them down, and cracked an egg into each “cup.” She put the works into the oven, but instead of crisping up into the Sunday brunch delicacy she thought she was making her family, the bloated pink meat became even more swollen, arched its back, and spewed its eggs all over the oven. She cursed for hours as she cleaned the oven, and the only happy creature in the house that day was the dog. He got a piece of the original “pink slime” when mom wasn’t looking, ‘cause – oh, yeah – she still served it to us, with ketchup instead of eggs. Karen Anderson, Calgary Food Tours I had a friend in high school who would invite us over for lunch, since he lived a few blocks from the school and his parents were at work. He would always serve the same thing – tuna sandwiches and a glass of water. He would chuckle madly while we ate, which, at the time, we naturally attributed to substance abuse. After a while he revealed that the “tuna” was actually cat food, and the water was scooped from the toilet bowl! After that, we brought our own lunches to his house and derived great pleasure from his induction of new “members” into the “TT (tuna and toilet water) Club.” Good times! Geoff Last, Bin 905 My mom’s best friend Rosemary is Welsh and she gave my mom a recipe for Welsh Rarebit – Welsh Rabbit, as we always called it. The original recipe is delicious but mama modified it to be more “healthy.” On nights when she wasn’t home to make us supper, she’d leave us sliced bread, a can of Heinz baked beans (healthy) and cheese slices. While the bread was toasting, we’d heat the beans. Then we put the beans on the toast and sliced cheese on top of that. We broiled it, and after the cheese melted, it was done and ready to eat. I burnt the top of my mouth every time we ate this because the bread would get soggy from the beans if you didn’t eat it fast. Tilly Sanchez, Calgary Food Tours Thanks to my grandmother, for years I wouldn’t eat Brussels sprouts. We always rode the ferry to Gabriola Island to visit my grandparents on Christmas Day. Grandma would stoke the huge oven with wood early in the morning, and the stuffed turkey that grandpa had probably killed the day before went in around 10 a.m. Here’s where the problem came in. My grandma, who was married to a Scot, would not waste a hot stovetop, so she put on the Brussels sprouts in a huge pot of water at the same time. Hours later, when the turkey was ready, the sprouts were ready – no amount of butter, salt or pepper could rescue those grey balls of mush! As a chef, I’ll pretty much eat anything, but, for years, I couldn’t eat Brussels sprouts. Susan Hopkins, Red Tree Catering/Kitchen

22 novEMBER decemBER 2012

I grew up on a farm. When I was young, home made was a threat, not a promise. Dad toured the local slaughterhouse, then came home and announced that all commercial meat, particularly bologna, hamburger and “tube steaks” (hot dogs), were banned from our house. Meat lost its delicious anonymity: “farm to table” meant eating animals that I knew personally, as my family embraced all things home made.

Old Country Sausage Shop

Illustration by Darcy Muenchrath

Butchering was noisy and bloody, and no one loved it more than grandma. An enthusiastic practitioner of using the whole beast, she loved tongue, liver, brains, pigs’ feet and making sausages. These delicacies were “special treats”– the tongue, pink, pickled and thinly sliced; the pigs’ feet, impossible to disguise, lurked partially submerged in gelatinous, vinegary aspic that was mined with pickling spice and bay leaf shrapnel. The rubbery aspic required gouging at the grey pork until it gave way with a spray of acidic jelly chunks. The home-made sausages offered a lardy, salty burn. Too bad if all you wanted was a chocolate orange. (Grandma wore pearls and little nylon ankle socks, always had her hair styled and spoke German, French and English. She was just bloodthirsty!) Hunting season didn’t just mean moose steaks: Grandpa prepared a whole, roasted moose heart. Stuffed with sage and breadcrumbs, it was black, dry and the size of my head. A few potatoes stood between it and us. My brother started to cry and I think my parents felt the same. The adults quaffed two gallons of Calona red wine before dinner was over.

Lunch Time

220 42AVE SE CALGARY AB 403 287 9255


When I found the ice cream pail full of rotten cream in the spare room, I knew no good would come of it. Mom was making cheese. The smelly, fermenting goo that was supposed to somehow become something we might eat was a disturbing sight. When it was finally deemed to be ready, we each received a scoop. It was grey and wobbly with giant wet curds. My brother started to cry. Dad just stared at it. It was fizzy, granular and acidic, smelling like rotten buttermilk and barnyards, although after the moose heart it was a nice change. We didn’t eat out very often – why go to town for expensive Chinese food when we could have home-made sweet and sour wieners? Brown sugar, ketchup and white vinegar were added to seared wieners and served with a side of soya saucedrenched instant rice. Imaginative use of Bisquick resulted in a biscuit dough pizza crust topped with tomato sauce and Velveeta. We didn’t need take-out, we needed an intervention. The potluck dinner is where home made lives: cabbage rolls bristling with toothpicks, suspicious meatballs, quivering salads with raisins, carrots and marshmallows in Jell-O, Ichiban noodles and cabbage together at last, and desserts featuring jam and dates. Eating other people’s home made put yours into perspective. Despite all this, I’m not against home made, but I’ve seen the cheese in the pail. This is why, when I start thinking that making ricotta is a good idea, I have to stop myself. I don’t have a good recipe. Yet.

Karen Ralph, Red Wine Tongue “pop-up” celebrations and wine adventures continued on page 24 noveMBER decemBER 2012


feeding people Just because it’s home made, doesn’t mean it’s good continued from page 23 We had six kids in our family and a single working mom who was famous for her pork chops baked in Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup, and Lipton Chicken Tetrazzini made with genuine powdered sauce and noodles – mmm, good! She also liked to serve Lipton Beef Stroganoff – which used a similar packaged base, the precursor to Hamburger Helper. This was during the ‘70s recession when wage and price controls were in effect and economizing was all the rage. What about Kraft Pizza mix? The box contained a flour mixture, powdered “cheese” and tomato paste in a can. With it you got a “free” can of Pepsi. Try divvying that up six ways!


CHEESE Six Fine Cheeses One Convenient Box

We were forever getting free samples of dodgy new products with our Homemakers magazine. One of my all-time favourites was Jell-O-1-2-3, which was a product of “better living through chemistry.” It was a mix that separated into three distinct layers as it cooled: a creamy top, a mousse-like middle, and a plain Jell-O bottom. Pizza in a jar that you spread on toast was another favourite free sample. How did we survive to become the well-educated, insufferably snooty foodies of today? I guess the same way we survived driving around in the front seat of our Rambler station wagon with no seat belts, airbags or ABS brakes – sheer luck!

Frank Hanson, ex-Calgarian now living in Melbourne, in the land of Auz My mom was/is a pretty good cook. But it was a sad day when I came home from school and it was stew for dinner – my dad’s “specialty,” and the only thing I can remember him making, which he does to this day. It’s beef stew made with stewed tomatoes and lean flank steak, which he cooked in huge chunks that got stuck in my teeth and tasted like wet rope. Can we talk mothers-in-law? Mine is sweet, but considers Cornish hens stuffed with Stove Top stuffing and served with three kinds of frozen vegetables – which typically get boiled for at least a half-hour – to be the height of gourmet dining. At Christmas, she bakes mince tarts, using jarred mincemeat (not that there’s anything wrong with that) and a thick, pure-white shortening pastry she rolls maybe twice, so it’s a good half-inch thick...

Julie Van Rosendaal, Dinner with Julie When my sibs and I were growing up, our parents used to entertain a lot. It was a neighbourhood thing – everyone took turns hosting the bridge club. When I was a teen, I was recruited to help out in the kitchen or serve food. On one of those occasions, I was instructed to unmold a tomato aspic – it had canned shrimp and chopped celery floating in it (ugh!) – from its Bundt pan onto a platter, then garnish it with lettuce, then put it on the dining room table. In the process of transferring the aspic from the right side work area to the left side work area, it slid off the plate into a pan of dish-washing water! Oddly, it didn’t fall apart. Working with a quickness born of panic, I scooped up the aspic – it started to fall apart from the scooping – and plopped it back on the plate. Everyone else was so busy, no one even noticed. I sort of patted it together, patted it dry, and artfully placed lettuce around the bottom and in the centre. Off it went to the dining room table. I was astounded to note later that it had been pretty much eaten. People really liked tomato aspic back in the day. And the only light in the dining room was candlelight. Whew!

Kathy Richardier, City Palate Sometimes home made was just the ticket!

Great for entertaining. Great for gift giving. Available for a limited time at any Co-op deli. 24 novEMBER decemBER 2012

My mother spent most of my high school years schlepping me and my brother to after-school activities: French lessons, drama, dance, kendo, piano lessons, you name it. We even tried basketball for a few weeks one year. Then she’d schlep us home to the farm, and throw together dinner, something that would quickly and affordably fill two ever-hungry teenagers. One night, she dumped a can of condensed mushroom soup on some macaroni, warmed it up and fed it to us. We loved it. Creamy noodles! How exotic! Over the next few years, she made it many times, probably relieved she’d found something easy to make that we’d both eat without complaining. She’s never cooked it for me since I moved away from home, and I’ve never fed it to my own kids. Yet. Ask me again in a few years when I have two starving, picky teenagers who need a chauffeur eight days a week.

Shelley Boettcher, executive editor Wine Access continued on page 36

Where chefs, foodies and knife nerds shop

• handmade Japanese kitchen knives • knife sharpening by hand • classic shaving gear 1316 9th ave SE Inglewood Calgary 403-514-0577 •

NOW also at the Calgary Farmers’ Market 510 77th Avenue SE, Calgary noveMBER decemBER 2012


well matched

Savoy Cabbage with Pancetta and Chestnuts This dish makes a festive side to almost any holiday meal. Vacuum-sealed chestnuts are already cooked, have a subtly sweet flavour and have a beautiful velvety texture. The saltiness of the pancetta offsets the sweetness of the chestnuts perfectly. 1 head savoy cabbage, finely sliced 1/2 c. diced pancetta 2 t. olive oil 1 shallot, finely chopped 1/2 t. ground allspice 1/2 t. ground cumin salt and pepper to taste 3/4 c. cooked chestnuts (vacuum packed are best, available in Italian markets and specialty food stores) 1 c. chicken stock 1 T. crème fraîche

Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil, season well with salt and blanch the cabbage for 2 minutes, drain well and set aside. In a large sauté pan, cook the pancetta over medium heat for 7 to 10 minutes, or until crisp. Add the shallot, allspice, cumin and season with salt and pepper, keeping in mind the saltiness of the pancetta. Gently crumble half of the chestnuts into the pan, then add the chicken stock and reduce by half. Add the cabbage to the pan along with the other half of the chestnuts, crumbled, and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the crème fraîche, check for seasoning and serve. Serves 4.

Pair this dish with:

Pares Balta Blanc de Pacs (Spain) $16 This wine offers Anjou pear and cantaloupe aromas with delicate hints of lemon zest. In the mouth it is soft with a refreshing minerality on the finish. Boekenhoutskloof Semillon (South Africa) $38 This semillon offers delicate white peach and pear aromas with undertones of almonds and spice. The mouthfeel is round, with a bit of weight, finishing mineral and clean.

26 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Matthew Altizer

Made-in-heaven food and wine pairings

Pheasant Wellington This dish is full of wintery flavours and makes for a surprisingly easy holiday main course. Normally, pheasants are only available whole, but they can be butchered just like chickens – the legs can be roasted or fried, and the bones make delicious stock. 2 boneless pheasant breasts, skin removed (find them at Second to None Meats and Bon Ton Meat Market) kosher salt and pepper to taste 2 T. grapeseed oil 2 slices foie gras (about 1 T. each) 1 sheet frozen puff pastry (8 x 10 inches) 2 t. quince paste (available in specialty food stores) 1/2 t. orange zest 1 egg 1 T. whipping cream

Pair this dish with:

Preheat oven to 425°F. Season the pheasant breasts well with salt and pepper. Preheat a sauté pan over high heat, add the grapeseed oil and quickly sear the pheasant breasts until light golden brown. Set aside to cool for 5 minutes. Put a clean baking sheet in the oven to preheat, this will help cook the bottom of the pastry. Pat the pheasant dry, and then make a small slice horizontally through the meat. Stuff the foie gras inside the pocket, making sure that none is sticking out. Cut the puff pastry into two large ovals, big enough to wrap around the pheasant breasts completely. Place 1 t. of quince paste and ¼ t. zest onto each piece of pastry, followed by the pheasant breast. Bring the edges up and pinch them together, cutting off any extra pastry. Whisk the egg with the cream and brush over the pastry and then transfer to the hot baking sheet. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until dark golden brown. Remove the Wellingtons from the oven and let them rest for a couple of minutes before serving. Serves 2.

Gratavinum 2πr Priorat (Spain) $45 This wine offers black cherry and wild raspberry aromas with hints of warm spice. The fruit on the palate is savoury, with subtle hints of smoke that finishes with good structure and bold fruit.

Celebrations ahead

Release some bottled sunshine into your glass and celebrate the season — while ignoring the weather! Metrovino’s upcoming tastings & celebrations: Château de Beauregard, Spain, Willamette Valley vs Burgundy, Beaujolais, Shiraz, Movie Night and FIZZTIVAL.

Feudi di Santa Tresa Cerasuolo di Vittoria (Sicily) $24 Intense raspberry aromas with dried cranberry undertones, hints of warm spices on the palate with delicate tannins and a fruit-driven finish.

722 -11th Avenue S.W. 403-205-3356 • noveMBER decemBER 2012


Unwrap this!

Ice will turn to dew

The Kastehelmi tableware design of Oiva Toikka of the Finnish company Iittala is both practical and beautiful. Its practicality comes from the use of droplets of glass to hide the joints that would otherwise be seen in these delicate-looking pieces. The beauty lies in the designer’s vision of the droplets, which look like dew drops glistening on grass in the morning. Kastehelmi means dew drops in Finnish. The enduring design, which has been available since 1964, speaks to Iittala’s belief in sustainability over “throwawayism,” a term the company coined. Colours include clear, light blue and green apple. On a Canadian winter table they’ll look like crystal clear icicles, frozen blue ponds and the thaw to spring’s green grass.

A baker’s dozen of wild and wonderful stuff that foodies love to give and receive. Make notes...

Kastehelmi by Iittala, $38 & up, Orangeworks

by Karen Anderson

Luxurious linens

Do you know someone who loves luxurious linens? Inspirati Linens is the place to find their gift. Inspirati carries brands formerly unavailable in Canada, like Italy’s Busatti or Somma, Ekelund of Sweden, Daniel Stuart Studio, Linen Way, Petit Mots and Le Jacquard Français. You can splurge on a table cloth or deck the halls with placemats and coordinating (not necessarily matching) napkins. Owner Wendy Brownie says that large orders can be filled in as little as two days. The quality of all the linens Brownie carries is as lasting as the impression your gift will make. Fine linens, $15 & up, Inspirati Fine Linens for Everyday

A bevy of bodacious bitters...

Buy a bevy of bitters, slip them into stockings or wrap them with a bow. When the cold weather keeps you and your holiday guests cooped up inside, you can play mixologist and invent cocktails as cool as the frost on your window. Kelci Hind and Colin Leach, owners of Silk Road Spice Merchants, love to play with flavours and have worked with some of Calgary’s best mixologists to determine the brands they carry and to stock the necessary botanicals one would need for making bitters at home. Bitters are strong infusions of herbs, spices and roots that are added to cocktails to enhance flavours and add an undertone of complexity. Bitters can also be used in cooking and baking, like vanilla, for an extra punch of flavour. Angostura adds a pleasant undertone to a punch made with ginger ale and white grape juice in equal parts. Add some lime juice and vodka and you’ve got a Bitter Moscow Mule. Assorted Bitters, various prices and sizes, Silk Road Spice Merchants in Inglewood and

28 novEMBER decemBER 2012

DIY molecular gastronomy

If you’ve dreamed of making the likes of Michelin-starred El Bulli’s molecular cuisine, now you can. Molecule-R gastronomy kits allow you to experiment with mad science and cook at the same time. Soy sauce foam, mint caviar beads that burst in the mouth, and balsamic vinegar pearls might seem gimmicky, but if your motive for these playful creations is like El Bulli chef Ferran Adrià’s – to engage all of the senses, evoke emotions like irony and humour, and rekindle childhood memories – then your guests will delight in your efforts. Holiday meals may never be the same. Molecule-R Cuisine R-Evolution Molecular Gastronomy kit, $60, The Cookbook Co. Cooks

3316901 AD_Schmancy_CityPalate_4.625x2.75.indd 1

05/10/12 3:11 PM

The best of the season...

fresh Turkeys, smoked Turkeys, Geese, Baking Hams and more! CREATIVE DIRECToR

You’ve stollen my heart



pRoD mAnAgER










3316901 AD_Schmancy_CityPalate_4.625x2.75 N/A

Wilde Grainz bakery is known for taking time and care in pRojECT: its bread making. 3316901 Glenbow City Palate Ad Preparations for its Christmas stollen can begin up to a week ahead. Stollen is a special German yeast bread, and owners Teddi Smith and Karen Shoenrank make theirs with brandy-soaked citrus peel and almonds and a secret stollen spice added to the dough that’s kneaded and rested until it’s ready to have almond paste folded into the center. When the bread comes out of the oven, it’s dipped into clarified butter, then rolled in granulated sugar. It’s left to rest another day before it’s finished with a final coat of icing sugar. If the way to the heart is through the stomach, this bread will have “stollen” many hearts this season.






Illichmann’s pUbLICATIon:


sCityaPalate u s a G e s H o P l T4.625" d . x 2.75"

Client Name



fresh meat and Homemade sausage Bacon and smokies

RiChelle PeteRS studio manager  D403 781 3379 F 403 262 9399

• Custom Cutting • Curing • • Smoking • Game Processing •

403.272.1673 1840–36th Street SE T r u s T e d

a n d

l o c a l l y

m a d e

f o r

4 5

y e a r s

Stollen, $18/loaf, wrapped in a gift box, Wilde Grainz bakery

. continued on page 30 noveMBER decemBER 2012






Unwrap this!

Mincemeat means the holidays

Samantha Carruthers is a soft-spoken British ex-pat who owns Sammy’s Pies, a regular at the Millarville Farmers’ and Christmas Market. Her mincemeat recipe was her grandmother’s – it contains a mix of raisins, sultanas, currants, candied peel, suet, brown sugar, nutmeg, mixed spice, lemon and orange zest, apple and brandy. Mince pies can be traced back to the 11th Century, when crusaders returned from the Holy Land with cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. These spices were added to meat pies to symbolize the three gifts given to Jesus by the three magi. The meat has gone, but Sammy’s mince tarts are spiced to sweet satisfaction. You can give a jar of mincemeat to someone who makes her own tarts, or you can order a gift box of six prepared tarts to enjoy yourself or to take as a hostess gift.

continued from page 29

Sammy’s Pies mincemeat, $26/500ml, call 403-934-3572 or visit The Millarville Christmas Market, November 9-11

Into the wild A new punch line

Solberry Sea Buckthorn Purée is made in Winnipeg, but the berries have been growing at The Saskatoon Farm in DeWinton since 1999. Owner Paul Hammer is fascinated by sea buckthorn health properties and has spent a decade propagating the species so he can sell the shrubs to Albertans who would like to add this hardy berry to their backyard orchards. Sea Buckthorn berries have 15 times the Vitamin C of an orange. They also have four kinds of Omega fatty acids, including Omega 7. It all adds up to a tart-tasting super food made palatable by adding it to juices and punches. Give it as a stocking stuffer. For a healthy holiday punch, just add the pretty orange purée to a bottle of soft apple cider for the kids. For adults, make a punch by adding it to 1-1/2 c. calvados, 1 bottle of sparkling wine and 10 dashes of Fee Brothers whiskey barrel-aged bitters and an iced ring of apple slices. You’ll be Solberry glad you did. (Apple ring: slice 6 apples thinly, overlap them on the bottom of a ring mold, add just enough water so they’ll freeze in position, freeze, then fill the mold with water and freeze until needed.)

We’ve come full circle by going back to foraging for food. It’s not a necessary survival skill, but it seems to have become a part of the contemporary food lover’s never-ending search for novel tastes and pristine ingredients. One of 2012’s bestselling cookbooks is Tama Matsuoka Wong’s Foraged Flavor: Finding Fabulous Ingredients in Your Backyard or Farmer’s Market (Clarkson Potter). Wong’s book is devoted to 70 foraging-friendly plant species that can be found across North America, with 88 recipes from chef Eddy LeRoux at Restaurant Daniel in New York City. Luckily, Calgarians have their own foraging guru, Julie Walker. Walker is owner and guide at the aptly named Full Circle Adventures. She has found tender young shoots and morel mushrooms and has converted dandelion loathers into lovers by sharing her knowledge of the “weed’s” nutritional and taste profiles. Give the foodies on your shopping list the experience of a spring foraging adventure. Full Circle Adventures foraging days in Southern Alberta, $70 & up,

Solberry Sea Buckthorn Purée, $22.50/348 ml, The Saskatoon Farm in DeWinton and at the Calgary Farmers’ Market

You wear what you eat

That’s the company credo for chef Pierre Lamielle’s new T-shirt design and custom printing company created with his partner Candace Bergman. Lamielle always has a pun in the oven and on his shirts, too. The pair calls their creations visualicious foodie fashions – you can explore all their tasty designs in their virtual shop. Got a bacon, coffee, dim sum, or vegetable lover on your list? You’ll find something unique for everyone’s particular – maybe even peculiar – taste. Food on your shirt T-shirts, from $24,

30 novEMBER decemBER 2012

continued on page 32


RESULTS ARE IN! When you see these symbols you’ll know you have chosen medal winning wines from Canada’s two best wine competitions.

The Wine Access International Value Wine Awards finds the best wines available to Canadians for under $25. Results in the Oct/Nov issue.














The Wine Access Canadian Wine Awards is the premium wine competition for 100% Canadian-made wines. Results in the Dec/Jan issue.

! s u n i o j . ith r w evaux e n in fD ne D ouse o g a mp e H Cha pagn ! a am ts t– 21s the Ch ticke r e r emb e of Call fo Nov Zanett le mil


contemPorAry FrencH Bistro 105, 550-11th Ave. sW

PH 587.352.0964 Avec Bistro @AvecBistro noveMBER decemBER 2012


Unwrap this! continued from page 29

Mussel man

Eric Giesbrecht is a five-time Alberta oystershucking champion, chef, caterer and owner of Meta4 Foods, a shellfish distribution company. He sources Canada’s premiere shellfish and rare ocean delicacies for seafood lovers in the prairies. Though Giesbrecht mainly supplies restaurants, he also offers an oyster and raw bar catering service, which sees him shuck, sauce and serve fresh oysters, scallops and other shellfish to group gatherings. Want some Canadian sturgeon caviar for Christmas Eve, live PEI lobster for New Year’s, mussels to make the season merry? Giesbrecht’s got them. For very merry mussels, heat 1 T. olive oil, then add chopped onion, fennel bulb and red pepper with 5 lbs. cleaned mussels. Steam for 5 minutes, then transfer mussels to a large bowl, discarding any that didn’t open. Add 1/4 c. Pernod and 1/2 c. whipping cream to the pot and reduce a bit. Return the mussels and their juices to the pot. Simmer until warmed and serve the mussels with chunks of crusty bread for soaking up the juices.

Prices start at $350 for a 100-oyster all-inclusive party, other seafood is market priced, ranging from $5.25/lb. for mussels to $130/50g for the finest caviar,

Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo or bust

It’s handy to have a butler…

…even if it’s just a butler’s table. Like a well-mannered butler, this little table from Crate and Barrel will add a touch of class to your entertaining. It pops up in an instant and has two lift-off trays for ease of service. The table is handcrafted of mango and composite wood stained a cheery Chinese red matte to add a pop of colour to your room. It folds flat to store, with a black drawstring storage bag for the trays. This little butler will squeeze into even the most Christmas tree-filled room with ease and charm.

Mexican food lovers rejoice. Each year the best international and local Mexican chefs and wine and tequila experts gather for the Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo Food and Wine Festival, a five-hour WestJet flight from Calgary. What a wonderful gift to surprise the hard-working holiday cook in your family. Nothing beats the mid-winter doldrums like a couple of plane tickets to Mexico and a festival that includes cooking this ancient, authentic cuisine, market tours, catamaran dinner cruises past quiet villages, avant-garde street food, traditional dishes with contemporary flair, exclusive house and garden tours and a chance to slow down and sip a margarita on the beach. It’s the light at the end of the long Canadian winter tunnel that will help you thaw into spring. Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo Food Festival,, for pricing & availability ✤

Butler’s table, $349, Crate and Barrel

Over the moon for chocolate macaroons

“Vegan” and “organic” may not be typical words to describe a chocolate macaroon, but add in “delectably irresistible” and you’ve summed up the ones made by Organic Lives. They’ll be a satisfying stocking stuffer. They’re also perfect for a ski jacket pocket. Whether you’re racing like a rocket down the slopes or burning calories going cross-country, these macaroons will provide plenty of fuel. Not your fancy French macarons, these are the macaroons kids’ dreams are made of. The organic fair-trade ingredients – sun-dried coconut, heirloom Balinese cocoa, heritage maple syrup, pure virgin coconut oil, whole ground vanilla, Himalayan salt – are so healthful they’d even get a passing grade as a lunch box treat. Hint: Organic Lives also makes lemon- and raspberry-flavoured macaroons. Organic Lives Chocolate Macaroons, 3 pack/ 78g./ $5.29, Blush Lane Organic Market Karen Anderson is the owner of Calgary Food Tours and she loves researching wild and wonderful gift ideas for foodies.

32 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Fill ‘N’ Go Draft Beer Fill up on draft beer right from our tap room! Exclusively at:





bath & body

921 - 9th Avenue SE 403-453-0313 w w w.the-apothecar

1317 9th Ave SE Calgary 403.287.9781

1317Let 9thusAve takeSE care of all your beauty needs with our knowledge and Calgary expertise. We use natural and organic 403.287.9781 products, while making sure you’re taken care of efficiently and safely!

1317 9TH Ave SE Calgary 403 287 9781 Gift Certificate noveMBER decemBER 2012


An Entertaining Menu Danish


Each year at this time, we check in with one of our talented chefs for entertaining food to celebrate the holiday season. This year we do it a bit differently – we turn for inspiration to a talented home cook, Agnes Bladt, a transplant from Denmark, who treats friends and family each year to a traditional Danish Christmas dinner on Christmas eve, when the Danes celebrate Christmas. by Kathy Richardier Agnes and Carl Bladt always throw a really jolly Christmas. Usually there are about eight of us, and the evening starts with drinks and whatever munchies are at hand. Dinner begins about 7:30 with the freshness of a seafood salad, replete with prawns and, often, scallops, garnish of tomatoes and pears.

hidden almond. As we eat, we’re all peering closely at each other to try to determine who might have gotten the almond and is hiding it under a tongue or in a cheek and looking guilty. Accusations get tossed about as we spoon more of the pudding onto our plates, either continuing the almond search or pretending we haven’t found it when we have.

Then the seriously savoury spread makes its appearance on the table – we’re all salivating, because we know that Agnes has spent the day creating a feast for us – the Danes know how to feast!

Pretty soon, the one of us hiding the almond is found out and gives up, amid much laughter and “I told you so...” from half the gathering, whether they did or not. If you get the almond, you win the prize, traditionally a marzipan pig. But marzipan isn’t favoured by everyone, so it’s been switched up to games, puzzles or books, but it’s pretty much whatever the previous year’s winner wants to contribute. Each year it’s the winner’s turn to contribute the next year’s gift.

Roast duck and goose are the stars of the show, accompanied by the birds’ prune and apple stuffing, gravy, sexy caramelized potatoes, boiled potatoes to soak up the gravy, braised red cabbage and pickled beets. All accompanied by copious quantities of wine. After what seems like hours of eating (and usually is) – the platters of duck and goose are passed many times – we take a short break before the pièce de resistance makes its appearance. The pièce – dessert – is where the fun really begins. The traditional dessert is rice pudding filled with chopped almonds in which one whole almond is buried. We all know there’s a whole almond in the pud... so when the large bowl of pudding is passed and we help ourselves, we’re all poking around with the serving spoon trying to “feel” the almond, and peering into the sides and bottom of the glass serving bowl. None of that works, but we all scoop great quantities onto our dishes hoping that we will scoop the almond. Then bowls of warm cherry, strawberry and raspberry sauce are passed to top the pud. In itself, this is a super dessert, never mind the search for the

34 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Some years, eight of us have pretty much demolished two large bowls of rice pudding in search of the elusive almond. Ahhhhhhhh, the stomach, the stomach. Coffee and tea follow, then at midnight, we hold hands and prance around the beautiful Bladt Christmas tree, lighted with real candles, and sing both English and Danish Christmas carols. Then comes the opening of the gifts and more food. The next day, those of us who are not Danish go through it all again in the North American tradition. And that’s what the season is all about. Here is Agnes’ Danish Christmas menu. Agnes pretty well does what she wants with it, since she’s been doing it for so long – and barely follows any recipes (which are all in Danish anyway, so that didn’t help me much!) – so we did some guesswork putting these recipes together. They’re a bit loose, but straightforward enough that they will work.

The Menu

First course: Seafood Sala



Roast Goose and R Stuffing and oast Duck, Gravy Caramelized Potatoes Braised Red Cabbage Boiled White Potatoes Pick (find them a led Beets t farme or make you rs’ markets, r own)


Rice Pudding wit Cherry Sauc h e Serves 6 to

8 people

Seafood Salad

Caramelized Potatoes

Boiled White Potatoes

3 - 4 prawns per person, cooked and peeled

6 - 7 very small, round potatoes per person, peeled and boiled 10 minutes, then cooled to room temp.

Peel as many white potatoes as you want to serve, boil them until tender and keep them warm.

1/2 c. white sugar

To serve

2 scallops per person, quickly fried in a little oil and butter (Agnes doesn’t always use scallops) lettuces

1/4 c. butter

slices of tomato and pear

Put the sugar in a heavy-bottomed sauté pan, like an All-Clad or cast-iron pan, over low heat. Let the sugar melt over the heat without stirring it except to spread it out when it starts to melt. When it gets all melted and golden – keep a close eye on this process, since you want the sugar golden and caramelly, not burned – add the butter and stir as it gets all bubbly, then add the potatoes. Stir the potatoes around in the caramel to coat them nicely, then let them sit in the caramel until ready to serve. When ready to serve, turn the heat on low to soften the caramel and give the ‘taters another coating.

drizzles of your fave vinaigrette

Arrange lettuces on salad plates, then place prawns and scallops on top. Place tomato and pear slices off to one side and drizzle the lettuces and seafood with a favourite vinaigrette.

Duck and Goose Find duck and goose at the farmers’ markets, end of November, beginning of December. Agnes gets about a 14-lb. goose and a 7-lb. duck. For six, you could do with a 12-lb. goose and a 5-lb. duck. 1 goose and 1 duck salt and pepper 2 lbs. tart apples 1-1/2 lbs. prunes, pitted sugar salt and pepper about 12 c. chicken stock

Salt and pepper the cavity of both the duck and the goose. Core and chop the apples into about 1-inch dice. Toss the apples and prunes together with a sprinkle of sugar, then stuff the duck and goose cavities tightly with the mixture. Close up the cavities as snugly as you can and rub the bodies all over with salt and pepper. Tuck the duck in the fridge. Put the goose into a cold oven, breastside up, and turn the oven on to 350°F. The duck will join the goose in the oven after the goose has been in for 2 hours. Roast the goose for about 5 hours total and the duck about 3 hours. After the goose has been roasting for about 1 hour, pour the fat out of the pan and save it. Add 8 c. of chicken stock to the pan and baste the goose about every 30 minutes. At hour 2, put the duck into the oven. After about 1 hour, pour the duck fat out of the pan and save it. Add 4 c. chicken stock to the pan and baste the duck about every 30 minutes, when you baste the goose. While the goose and duck are roasting, you can prepare the side dishes...

Braised Red Cabbage 1 large head of red cabbage, about 2 lbs. 3 T. butter 1/2 c. white vinegar sugar to taste (start with 2 T.) salt to taste 1/2 tart apple, shredded splash of red currant juice, or pomegranate juice, if you can’t find red currant (Agnes adds a splash of pickled beet juice too)

Slice the cabbage really thin, as for cole slaw, using a mandoline, if you have one. Cook it in the butter in a large pot until it has softened, then add the vinegar. Cook slowly, stirring, about 15 minutes, then add the sugar and salt. Cook and stir a bit, then add the apple. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage is tender, then add the splash of fruit juice and pickled beet juice, if using. Keep covered and warm until ready to serve.

Gravy Make a gravy using the fat from the duck and goose and the stock from the pans when the birds are ready to come out of the oven. First, make a roux by heating about 4 T. fat, then adding 4 T. flour, whisking all together very well. Slowly add 2 c. of the stock from the pans while whisking constantly. The gravy should start to thicken immediately, then keep whisking until the flour is cooked – you’ll know this by tasting it. Adjust the thickness of the gravy with further additions of stock, until you reach the consistency you like. Adjust the seasonings. Add a couple of spoons of red currant jelly to the gravy when it’s finished cooking.

Carve the goose and duck and arrange the pieces on separate serving platters along with the prune and apple stuffing and the caramelized potatoes. Pass with the red cabbage, boiled potatoes, gravy and pickled beets.

Rice Pudding with Cherry Sauce This generously serves 4 to 5. Agnes doubles the recipe because we keep refilling our dishes until the almond is located, and leftovers are good too. 2 c. milk 1/2 c. short-grain rice sprinkle of salt 1 oz. blanched almonds, coarsely chopped 1 T. sugar seeds from 1/2 vanilla bean few drops almond extract 1 c. whipping cream, whipped 1 whole blanched almond

Cook the milk, rice and salt about 45 minutes over medium heat, stirring frequently. Pour into a bowl and chill in the fridge. Mix the almonds with the sugar. When the rice pudding is chilled, mix in the almonds, vanilla bean seeds and almond extract until well combined. Then mix in the whipped cream. Put the pudding into a glass serving bowl – two glass bowls if you double the recipe – and push the almond into the pudding, making sure it can’t be seen. Serve with the cherry sauce.

Cherry Sauce Agnes uses Gourmet Gallery pitted red sour cherries that she finds at Calgary Co-op stores in a 19 oz. jar. Pour the cherries into a pot, reserving enough of the juice to mix with 2 T. cornstarch. Bring the cherries to a low boil. Put the reserved juice into a small bowl with the cornstarch and whisk together. Add the cornstarch mixture to the burbling cherries and stir until the cherries are thickened and saucy. Serve the cherries warm over the rice pud – and go for the almond! (Agnes also makes rice pud sauces using frozen strawberries and raspberries. The cherries are traditional.) ✤ noveMBER decemBER 2012


feeding people Just because it’s home made, doesn’t mean it’s good continued from page 24 One dish that still makes my nose turn up and my face crinkle at the memory was mom’s spaghetti squares. This recipe consisted of cooked spaghetti that was cut up and mixed with tomato sauce, cottage cheese, cooked ground beef, onions and shredded cheese. It doesn’t sound that bad, but on your fork it was a mix of strange textures and flavours – the cottage cheese was always the last thing you tasted. There are no words to explain this dish, except to say that it’s something my own children will never have to eat. And somehow, this strange casserole seemed to reproduce in the fridge, providing us with leftovers for days. Mom’s spaghetti squares proved to me that even food lovingly made doesn’t always need a second bite! Another food memory scar came from my mom’s great idea to make school lunch sandwiches ahead of time and freeze them. Just imagine frozen ham, bologna, and peanut butter and jam sandwiches, wrapped in wax paper for months, with freezer-burnt bread and flavours that just shouldn’t be part of sandwiches. And cold cuts turn really funny colours when frozen. Ugh! This may be the reason that I still don’t eat sandwiches. (I think those sandwiches were still in the freezer when we moved out a couple of years later!)

Erin Rosar, sommelier manager, Co-op Wine Spirits Beer In my family, there’s always been a tradition at Christmas that we had to have a molded green lime, sour cream coleslaw jellied salad. No one knew when the tradition started, but it was mandatory. Nobody actually ate it. It was simply there as a bit of culinary mockery. My mom used to make pork ribs using my nana’s recipe: boil the hell out of the ribs, then put a combination of ketchup and powdered French onion soup on top and broil them in the oven. Well, they ended up being insipid grey lumps of dry meat with burnt sauce clunked on top. But every time my mom made them she tweaked the recipe a bit, so that now she simmers the ribs gently to tenderize the meat, slow-bakes them in the oven with good barbecue sauce, then finishes them on the grill for flavour perfection. Now they’re the best ribs I’ve ever had and I no longer dread it when mom makes ribs.

Pierre Lamielle, author of Kitchen Scraps My grandmother raised a family of four children to adulthood despite no apparent ability to cook. We loved her, but hated dining at her house. She’d take any shortcut to get a meal together, no matter how preposterous. She’d ruin perfectly good Kraft Dinner by squeezing in gobs of yellow hot dog mustard. “For zip,” she’d say, as we grandkids protested. But her most notorious concoction was a “preparation” that must have been making the rounds in the women’s magazines in the 1970s – mock pizza. Everything about it was so wrong. Ketchup-soaked slices of white bread formed the base. Dabs of Velveeta were dropped from above. The final flourish was the mock pepperoni – slices of hot dogs! Nothing could have been less like pepperoni. Grandma fired it under the oven’s broiler and declared that she’d made our favourite meal – pizza. We would eat in silence. Thankfully, we knew she’d mash bananas into ice cream for “dessert.”

Jennifer Cockrall-King, When home made is really hard to take, accompany it with this festive cocktail from Victoria Gin and it will all be better!

Gingle Bell Martini

Grand Fir Syrup

Sweet Fir Rim

2 oz. Victoria Gin

1/2 c. white sugar

1/4 oz. Grand Fir Syrup, or to taste

1/2 c. water

Dry a couple of fir boughs in the oven for 45 minutes at 250°F. Cool, then grind the fir needles finely with a mortar and pestle.

Sweet Fir Rim

Dampen the rim of a martini glass with a lemon wedge. Put the sweet rim mix on a saucer and roll the damp rim to coat. OSPITALITÀ ITALIANA QUALITY APPROVED

36 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Gently shake the Victoria Gin and the fir syrup with ice. Strain into the martini glass.

12 inches of fresh fir bough

Make a simple syrup by boiling the sugar and water until the sugar is dissolved. Let the fir bough steep in the syrup for 15 minutes, then allow it to cool and strain. (This tastes amazingly like grapefruit.)

Mix one part ground fir needles to 4-1/2 parts sugar. Enjoy! noveMBER decemBER 2012


Souvenir from the

Périgord Confit of Duck Confit, a French verb that translates as “preserving,” was a medieval discovery that was first applied to fruits cooked and preserved in sugar. Now, we usually apply the term to meats – usually pork, duck or goose – that are salted and slowly cooked in their own fat. The meat is put into a container and covered with the cooking fat, which acts as a seal and preservative. Confit can be refrigerated for up to six months. 2 duck legs

Duck Rillettes

Story and photos by Thierry Meret

France’s Périgord region is rich in history. Located in southwestern France, it’s a perfect destination for a journey back in time, unless, of course, you happen to be a duck or a goose.

1/4 c. water

1 duck (about 6 lbs.)

To make the confit: Place the duck legs in a dish, skin-side down and sprinkle them with a fine layer of kosher salt. Cover the legs and refrigerate them for at least 12 hours. When you are ready to make the confit, brush off the remaining salt from the legs, rinse them under cold water and dry them well.

1-1/2 c. duck fat 1 onion, peeled and sliced 1 thyme sprig 1/2 t. Chinese five-spice powder

The duck is the gastronomic icon of the Périgord and the city of Sarlat, one of the most attractive and alluring towns in southwestern France. Proudly displayed in the centre of the main square, inside the walls of its 13th century fortified town, are statues of three golden geese. (Back in the day, it all started with geese, which accounts for goose rather than duck statues. Now, farmers have switched to duck.) “Cuisine artisanale” is written on most of the restaurant signs across the region, and the medieval city is the capital of specialties labeled “à la Sarladaise” where fat meets richness and comfort.

Remove the legs and wings from the duck and debone the breasts. Trim some of the skin but leave most of the fat covering. Place the duck pieces into a cast-iron pot or a soup pot. Add the duck fat, onion, thyme and five-spice powder. Add any fat and skin trimmings that you got from the duck while deboning it. Add the water and 2 t. of salt per 2 lbs. of duck. Bring to a simmer and allow the duck to cook on low heat for about 3-1/2 hours, but remove the skin trimmings after 2 hours.

“Madame, une p’tite coucougnette?” Before she could politely say “not today,” a cube of foie gras wrapped into a ball of fig paste was popped into her mouth. The smiling duck farmer, with raised eyebrows, waited for her approval to wrap up a dozen. Et voila! Originally, coucougnette – the casual name for testicle due to its shape – was a French confection originating in Pau from a few decades ago. It’s made of a whole almond dipped in chocolate then wrapped in raspberry-scented almond paste. It makes a perfect Valentine’s Day gift. The Périgord clearly puts its own twist on the recipe! Soon after returning home from our Périgord adventures, I found myself waxing nostalgic, already missing the “saveur du terroir.” I decided to indulge my culinary inclinations with a beautiful organic duck that I found at Sunworks Farm – also available at Noble Farm – and was instantly taken back to the sights, sounds, smells – and tastes – of the Périgord. These recipes are simple fixes for a Périgourdine experience. Bon appetit!

38 novEMBER decemBER 2012

3/4 c. duck fat

Rillettes originated in the 15th century and were initially prepared with pork. Rabelais, a French Renaissance writer, referred to the dish as “brown pork jam” which explains the consistency of well-prepared rillettes.

Transformed into magret or confit, fumé or aiguillette, foie gras or coucougnette, paté or rillettes, the average duck doesn’t stand a chance. I was reminded of the love that the French have for this bird when I was visiting my family there last summer.

After 17 days of sampling duck products, my traveling companion eventually felt like a duck, smelled like duck, and, distressed at the thought that she might start growing feathers, she decided to spend at least one day duck free. But despite her effort she didn’t stand a chance.

2 T. kosher salt

3/4 c. water salt and pepper to taste

Remove the duck and allow it to cool a bit. Cool the cooking fat to solidify it. Remove the remaining bones from the meat and, using 2 forks, flake the meat into a stringy pile. When the shredded duck meat has cooled to room temperature, add 2 T. of duck fat to the meat and, using the forks, mix it in until well incorporated and the mixture looks appetizingly moist. You may have to add an extra spoon of fat if your rillettes look a bit dry. Add a few pinches of crushed black pepper and transfer the rillettes to a serving dish. Serve with toasted baguette and glasses of beaujolais. Store leftover rillettes in a glass jar with a layer of melted duck fat on top for about eight days in the fridge. Makes about 2 lbs. of rillettes.

1 bay leaf 2 garlic cloves, whole 1 thyme sprig

Place the legs in a small saucepan just large enough to hold them, along with the fat, water, bay leaf and garlic cloves, and bring the mixture to a temperature of about 158°F. This step is very important, and the use of a food thermometer to monitor the temperature is recommended. Cook the legs for about 2-1/2 to 3 hours, or until the meat feels extremely tender when you insert a small knife into the flesh. Remove the legs and place them in a jar. Strain the cooking liquid through a fine mesh strainer. Allow it to rest for five minutes to separate the fat (top) from the water (bottom). Gently scoop enough of the fat to completely cover the duck legs. Allow the legs and fat to cool, then refrigerate the confit. It will keep up to a week. Strain and reserve the remaining fat in the freezer for future use. To serve the confit: Preheat the oven to 365°F. Remove the legs from the jar and scrape off the fat. Heat a cast-iron or other oven-proof pan to medium heat, place the legs skin-side down into the pan and allow the skin to crisp up. When the skin is crisp, put the pan in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 140°F. Serve immediately atop a salad with sautéed pommes Sarladaise that you make by roasting sliced potatoes in duck fat with garlic and chopped parsley. Serves 2.

Duck Aiguillettes and Lentil Salad Aiguillettes used to refer to the thin strip of flesh that was left attached to the breast bone after deboning. Nowadays, it refers to thin slices of poultry and game birds. 1 c. green le Puy lentils 1 bay leaf 1 t. kosher salt 1 whole duck breast, trimmed of excess skin and bones removed sea salt and freshly ground pepper 1 t. Dijon mustard 2 t. red wine vinegar 1/4 c. walnut oil sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste 2 carrots, peeled and diced 2 celery sticks, strings removed and diced 1 shallot, peeled and chopped 1 red pepper, seeded and diced 1/2 c. Italian parsley, chopped

Place the lentils in a large saucepan and cover with plenty of cold water. Add the bay leaf and salt and bring to a quick boil. Cook, uncovered, on high heat, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender to the tooth but still a little firm. You may need to add more water to keep the lentils submerged at all time. Drain the lentils and briefly run cold water over them. Drain thoroughly and spread the lentils on a tray or baking sheet to allow the lentils to finish cooling. Place a cast-iron pan or heavy saucepan on high heat. Season the duck breast with salt and freshly crushed black pepper. Place the duck breast into the hot pan, skin-side down, to allow the fat to melt and the skin to render to a nice golden brown. Turn the breast over and turn off the heat. Leave the duck breast to finish cooking slowly, off the burner, with just the remaining heat from the pan. To make the vinaigrette, whisk together the mustard, wine vinegar, walnut oil and salt and pepper. Assemble the salad by combining the lentils with the carrots, celery, shallot, red pepper, parsley and the vinaigrette. Adjust seasoning if needed and refrigerate for an hour. To serve, spoon some lentil salad into serving bowls. Slice the cooled duck breast thinly, aiguillettes-style, and place the slices on the lentil salad. Serve with toasted baguette slices and glasses of C么tes du Rh么ne. Serves 4. continued on page 40 noveMBER decemBER 2012


Souvenir from the Périgord continued from page 39

Cooking Duck Breast S t e p

b y


S t e p

Marinating Duck Breasts 2 duck breasts


1/2 c. red wine 1 T. soy sauce 2 whole star anise 1 t. whole coriander seeds


1 bay leaf

Put the duck breasts in a bowl or pan. Mix the other ingredients together and pour over the duck. Refrigerate 2 hours. Remove the breasts from the marinade and pat dry. Reserve the marinade for the sauce.

Cooking the Duck Breasts

2. Preheat the oven to 360°F. Season the breasts with freshly ground pepper. Place a heavy saucepan or cast-iron pan on high heat and put the duck breasts in skinside down. No oil required. When the skin has crisped, flip the breasts onto the other side and turn the heat off immediately. After 1 minute, flip the breasts back onto the skin side and place the pan in the oven. After 2 minutes, turn the oven off. Wait another 2 minutes, then remove the pan from the oven. Place the breasts on a paper towel-lined plate and keep warm in the turned-off oven.


3. Place the pan back on the heat and pour the marinade into it through a strainer. Whisk vigorously over high heat and allow the liquid to reduce by half.

4. Turn the heat off and whisk in 1 T. butter. 5. Slice the duck breasts. 6. Pour the sauce into a small sauce boat or Asian spoon and serve it alongside

the sliced duck. Serve the duck with Roasted Beet Quinoa Salad (below) and steamed snap peas. Serves 4 to 6.


Roasted Beet Quinoa Salad A staple food the the Incas, quinoa was known as the “mother of grains.” The Inca emperor traditionally sowed the first seeds of the season. The United Nations has declared 2013 the International Year of Quinoa. 2 medium red or golden beets 4 T. olive oil 1 small onion, peeled and diced 1 c. quinoa (first, run it under water in a sieve,

rustling it around with your fingers, to get rid of the saponin coating) 2 c. vegetable or chicken stock 1 bay leaf salt and pepper to taste 1 carrot, peeled and diced small

1 celery stick, strings removed and diced small 1/4 c. walnut oil 3 T. white wine vinegar 1 t. ground cumin 1/4 c. Italian parsley, chopped

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Rub the beets with 1 T. olive oil and wrap them in foil. Place them in the oven for about 1 hour, until they’re cooked. Remove and cool enough to handle. Remove the peels and dice the beets small. Reserve. Heat the remaining olive oil in a pan, add the onion and cook over medium heat until soft. Add the quinoa and stir well to coat. Add the stock, bay leaf, and salt and pepper and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook on low heat for about 30 to 40 minutes, or until the quinoa is cooked and the liquid fully absorbed. Spread the quinoa loosely onto a tray or baking pan to cool. When the quinoa is cooled, put it into a bowl and add the carrot, celery, beet, walnut oil, wine vinegar and cumin and toss gently to combine. Add the parsley, toss again, and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving. Serves 4 to 6. ✤

Thierry Meret is a chef and co-owner of Cuisine et Château.

40 novEMBER decemBER 2012



TEA TOWELS FOR EVERY ONE ON YOUR LIST! 103, 2115 - 4th Street SW - down the alley 403.244.4443 |

silver bells, copper boxes








Winter beers Warming beers for cold weather By Don Tse

As the days grow shorter and the mercury struggles to climb up the thermometer, everyone knows that it’s time to stop thinking about beer, which is best served ice cold on a hot summer day. However, “everyone” is wrong and is missing out on some of the most flavourful beers there are. The fact is, many beers are appropriate for colder days. Many are even specifically designed for cold weather. Because these brews have no need to be crisp or refreshing, they tend to be full-bodied and have complex flavours, offering drinkers an entirely different experience from summer beers. Winter Warmers – “Winter warmer” is a recognized beer style in many brew competitions, confirming the notion that brewers have more than hot summer days on their minds. Beers in this style have relatively high alcohol content – 6 percent alcohol by volume (ABV) or higher – and tend to be on the sweet side, with a greater emphasis on malt than on hops. These malt flavours may be reminiscent of fruits like plums, raisins or figs, even though none are used in brewing the beer. However, spices – particularly nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger – are commonly added to the brew to add festive flair. Barley Wine – Barley wines are not wines. They are beers that have levels of alcohol approaching those of wine. Some, like wines, are vintage dated, reflecting subtle year-to-year variations in the recipe or the quality of the underlying ingredients. Barley wines also age well, so put a few away and pull them out years later when the weather is particularly dreadful. Barley wines warm the spirit by relying on full-bodied, complex, malty flavours that may include nuts, toast, molasses and fruits.

Smoked Beers – Few modern homes have wood-burning fireplaces, so chestnuts roasting on an open fire is but a Nat King Cole dream for most. Thankfully, there are smoked beers to fill the void. Smoked beers get their smokiness from the malt used for brewing, which is dried over a smoky fire. Different types of wood, or other fuels, like peat, add different smoke flavours. The smoke may be a subtle accent to the beer, or it may be as smoky as a peaty scotch. Indeed, some of these brews are made from the same kind of smoked malt used to make scotch. If these don’t warm you up, you’d better move to a warmer climate. Eisbock – In the mid-1990s, there was a marketing war between Canada’s two largest brewers, Molson and Labatt, over their brands of ice beer, basically just regular beer with a slightly higher alcohol content. While there was much hype over these beers, the idea was not new. German brewers have been making ice beers, known as eisbock, for centuries. To make eisbock, brewers typically start with a doppelbock, a strong, rich, dark beer that’s between 7 to 10 percent ABV, and freeze it. Since water freezes sooner than alcohol, when the ice is skimmed off, the beer that’s left behind (which may now be up to 14 percent ABV) is more concentrated, in terms of both alcohol and flavour. These beers are made in freezing temperatures to be consumed in freezing temperatures. Baltic Porter – Baltic porter is a style of beer that originated from the countries bordering the Baltic Sea. Brewers there know a thing or two about cold weather. Baltic porters range from 5.5 percent ABV all the way up to 9.5 percent ABV. They’re dark brown to opaque black and have an oily, almost viscous appearance. Look for thick, rich flavours that coat your tongue and linger long after you’ve swallowed the beer. Built on a full-bodied malt foundation, these porters’ flavours might include nuts, coffee or licorice. There may even be hints of dark fruits, including prunes and currants. Gift Packs – Gift packs don’t necessarily feature winter beers, but at this time of year you’ll often find liquor store shelves stocked with special packs of beers and glassware meant for gift-giving. This year, for the first time in Calgary, there will even be an advent calendar put together by Craft Beer Importers Canada with punch-out pockets containing 24 different beers. If you have beer-loving friends, this one item completes your Christmas shopping for them. It will be available through well-outfitted liquor stores, and while you’re at it, you might as well pick one up for yourself. Taste each day’s beer and share your experiences with your friends, because nothing chases away winter blues like the warmth of friendship!

Brrr… pass me a beer! Calgary’s better liquor stores have a plethora of beers appropriate for winter. Give these beers a try – they’ll warm your spirit. Samuel Smith’s Winter Welcome Ale – The name says it all. This British winter ale features a special label every year (usually featuring a winter scene) to warm your soul, and a slightly higher than average alcohol content to warm your body. Brewed in limited quantities each year, the beer epitomizes the winter warmer category. I like it as an accompaniment to turkey. Anchor Our Special Ale – Probably the most enduring symbol of Christmas is the spruce tree, so what could be more appropriate to add to a Christmas ale than sprigs of spruce? The recipe for this beer changes each year, but it’s consistently full-bodied and malty. The use of spruce as spicing is always obvious, contributing sharp, pine-like flavours. These flavours hold up well to meaty dishes like steak or even game meats. Samichlaus – Ho! Ho! Ho! “Samichlaus” is Swiss-German for Santa Claus. This beer is brewed only once a year – on December 6, the anniversary of the feast day of St. Nicholas. This fact alone makes Samichlaus an appropriate beer for winter. But add the fact that the beer weighs in at 14 percent ABV, and there are few beers more appropriate to the season. A rich, sherry-like flavour makes this the perfect accompaniment to chocolate. Wild Rose Cherry Porter – Nobody understands Calgary winters like Calgarians. So when local brewery Wild Rose releases its Cherry Porter each year, you should rush out to get some. Made with whole cherries to supplement a chocolaty, malty base beer, Cherry Porter is a festive dessert in a bottle. A chocolate dessert accompaniment would wash the flavours out of this beer, so try it with something simple, like vanilla ice cream. Brewsters Blue Monk Barley Wine – I look forward to October every year when Brewsters brewpubs release the latest edition of their Blue Monk Barley Wine. Blue Monk is served only at Brewsters’ locations throughout Alberta, so it cannot garner much international acclaim. But it should, because, of the hundreds of barley wines I’ve sampled, Blue Monk is one of the best. Hints of brandy and brown sugar are balanced against clean hop bitterness and fruity hop flavours. Barley wines like Blue Monk pair beautifully with cheese. ✤

42 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Don Tse is a Calgary beer writer who drinks beer 52 weeks a year. He believes that to every beer, there is a season.

Where Christmas comes to life ...

A Great Wine Store Come check out our wall of great under-$25 wines Visit our website for our upcoming tasting schedule





BIN 905

Distinctive Wines and Spirits

2311-4th Street SW 403.261.1600 /

The new way to define a night out. {we call it Bar-see}, noun: 1. A new BRAND of restaurant in Calgary’s beltline 2. A modern hot spot for food & drinks FOOD & DRINK

3. The newest member of the award-winning Canadian Rocky Mountain Resorts family

Now Open – Book your Christmas Parties and private functions 340 - 17th Avenue SW (beside Cilantro) noveMBER decemBER 2012


The Foodie’s Bucket List A collection from City Palateers and City Palate readers

Brandy Newman It looks like the world is supposed to end... again... on December 21st. What foodie sorts of things do we want to accomplish before that fateful day arrives, before we all “kick the bucket”? We figure they can be things we’ve never done and want to do, or things we’ve done that were so great we want to do them again. Leah Guderjan CP reader...

After discovering the true beauty of authentic Trappist ale, I want to travel to Belgium and tour the Trappist monasteries. I would gather a sample from each monastery and find a nice sunny hillside spot. There I would spread out a big blanket, bask in the sunshine, taste each ale and try to pick my favourites. All the while, snacking on fresh bread, pommes frites, local cheeses, charcuterie, and crème brûlée for dessert! The world is ending... who cares about calories!

David Furneaux resident of France and CP reader... There’s just enough time for a few good meals. The first that comes to mind is gathering a few friends for a lunch on the pier at Leucate, south of Narbonne. The lagoons there produce the best oysters. Sitting in the sun with a tray of oysters opened moments before with fresh bread, salty butter, slices of lemon and a bottle of Picpoul de Pinet wine would be a fitting tribute to the end.

CP reader...

I’ve always wanted to visit a state fair and judge a pie-making contest. Seems so quintessentially American.

Ellen Kelly CP account exec... 1) I would like to take three or four months and leisurely travel, in a vintage silver Air Stream trailer, down the west coast from Vancouver, across the southern United States and up the eastern seaboard. I would take the “blue highways,” eat pie at every roadside joint, talk to everyone and soak up the ambience and local colour. Might be a book in it – Eating Pie Across America. 2) Having read Diana Kennedy’s books – especially Nothing Fancy – about the food of Mexico, I would love to spend time cooking with her at her home in the wilds of Michoacán. At 87, she’s notoriously prickly – I think we’d get along famously.

Liz Tompkins CP account exec...

1) I love Vietnamese food and dream of the day I can sit at a street market in Vietnam for a bowl of bun or pho, and probably only pay about $2 for it. 2) A little closer to home, I’d do dinner at Eagle’s Eye Restaurant on Kicking Horse Mountain with a small group of close friends. We’d sit down to a glass of prosecco and a five-course dinner with more wine. At midnight we’d head down the mountain to our cozy rooms or go for a dip in the hot tub. 3) My husband and I travelled to France 21 years ago. We were on a budget and didn’t eat in many restaurants, but picnicked. It was great at the time, but I’d like to travel back again – no budget – and eat in a restaurant every night for a month!

Mike Kelley

CP reader...

I’d love to have the foie gras double-down I had at Joe Beef last year in Montreal. It was that good! It was a foie gras “grilled cheese” sandwich – 2 pieces of seared foie gras acted as the “bread,” with a semi-firm melted cheese and Virginia ham in the middle. A wax paper wrapper held it all together. OMG!

Lorraine Groot CP reader...

Jeanine McColl CP reader...

My husband, Jan Groot, would like to teach a cooking class before he “kicks the bucket.”

The foodie selections on my bucket list are Sunday Brunch at the Ritz hotel in Paris. Magnifique! That, and high tea with the Queen.

Rosemary Bacovsky CP reader...

Rogelio Herrera Alloy, CP reader...

So many great food experiences, so little time! I would eat at the 18 restaurants on the 2012 S. Pellegrino’s World’s 50 Best Restaurants List that I have not yet tried. While in Japan, eating at #27 Narisawa and #28 Nihonryori RyuGin, we would take a few extra days to enjoy Japan’s other culinary delights. While in Spain, eating at #40 Quique Dacosta, we would take a side trip to Barcelona to eat at Ferran and Albert Adrià’s restaurants, Tickets and 41 Degrees, and at their Mexican restaurant and Japanese-influenced Nikkei, if both are open. While in France, eating at #24 Mirazur, I would go again to #40 Bras to enjoy its phenomenal food and stay a few days to relax in the beauty of the Aubrac region.

44 novEMBER decemBER 2012

I would want to jump on a plane with my family and friends and hit a new city every day for the rest of the year, have breakfast, lunch and dinner in the most interesting places we can find – a world culinary “cruise,” if you like. This sounds more like a last wish than a bucket list item, but if the world is going to end, this is what I wish to do. A CP reader who wishes to remain anonymous... I’d like to take foie gras to a vegetarian pot luck... and anonymously add it to the table. continued on page 46

Revitalize your look

Now offering Botox™ and Juvéderm™ Who wouldn’t want smoother, firmer-looking skin? Replenish what natural aging takes away, for a fresher, rejuvenated look.

403.547.9558 | 106 Crowfoot Terrace NW | Calgary, AB

city palate

The Cookbook Co. CookS

invite you to a enjoy a unique, communal dining experience...

A Long Table Dinner

A fabulous, seasonal 5-course meal, served family-style, prepared by the chefs at The Cookbook Co. Cooks., with wine pairings by the sommeliers at Metrovino. November 6th, 2012 and February 5th, 2013 at 6:30 p.m., at 724 -11th Avenue SW – next door to The Cookbook Co. and Metrovino Tickets $95, available at The Cookbook Co., 403-265-6066, ext 1.

sizzle SEARINGLY CREATIVE Warm to autumn

119 12th avenue sw, downtown calgary | 403.206.9565 reservations | noveMBER decemBER 2012


The Foodie’s Bucket List continued from page 44

Gail Norton

CP publisher...

I would like to have dinner suspended in the air. I’ve read about dinners that take place on suspended platforms. I can think of nothing more cool than combining my love of travel and food – it would be like being on an airplane without the walls, but the food has to be waaaaay better, of course.

Carol Slezak CP designer...

1) I always wanted to go to the world-famous El Bulli molecular gastronomy restaurant. But, alas, I waited too long because it’s now closed! I’ll have to do some googling to try to figure out the next creative genius to “replace” Ferran Adrià, El Bulli’s genius chef/owner. It would have been a good excuse to see Spain, too. 2) I’d also like to have my photo taken at each of the Seven Wonders of the World, eating a different-flavoured ice cream cone in front of each “wonder.” 3) Husband Garry’s wish was inspired by one of the episodes of “Around the World in 80 Plates,” about eating meat, meat and more meat in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Apparently the Argentineans revere their barbecue. It’s a ceremony in itself and it’s all about the meat. Garry is a devoted carnivore, so he wants to go there... soon!

Kelly Black UNA Pizza & Wine, CP reader... I would start in Seattle at How to Cook a Wolf, and I’d order a dozen egg yolk ravioli. Without a doubt, the best thing I’ve ever eaten. Then to Portland to Laurelhurst Market where it would be fried green tomatoes and a flank steak. Then south to San Francisco to RN74 where I’d drink all the meursault and eat all the clams! I’d have to stop at Delfina Pizza (the inspiration for UNA Pizza) and have a pie. Any one would do, but It has to have a fresh egg on it.

Desmond Johnston Brassica Mustard, CP reader...

I’ve always wanted to work in a medieval kitchen to produce an Antonin Carème 20-course feast (peacock feathers and all). The event would take a month to create, having all the meats arrive as full carcasses or alive, and produce suppliers showing up with an assortment to choose from (no computers for ordering). Wood- and coal-fired stoves only! There would be a huge brigade to do this – a team of apprentices, masters of their own disciplines, a complete monster/mentor as a sous chef and, of course, a god-like chef to orchestrate and command the respect of everyone involved. The tables would be lavishly adorned and teams of staff would assist with every need. Naturally, there would be copious libations from start to finish. I wish to do this twice – once as an underling in the kitchen, humble and attentive, working 20 hours a day and sleeping next to the ovens, and once again as a guest – and I will wear a frilly frock coat.

Jane Hammink and Michelle Barby Savour Fine Foods, CP readers... Jane – I want to have dinner at The French Laundry, take cooking classes in Italy, and have dinner at The Wickaninnish Inn in Tofino while watching a huge storm. Michelle – I want to take a cooking class at both the CIA in New York and Cordon Bleu in Paris. I want to go on a truffle “hunt” in Italy and take a “food tour” of India and Asia.

Camilla Sherret CP reader...

I want to travel to and eat in Portugal, Spain, Italy, China, Thailand, Chicago and Japan. AND have a meal with Anthony Bourdain. But my last meal has to be sushi.

Aviv Fried Sidewalk Citizen Bakery, CP reader...

I will bake bread in 400-year-old communal ovens in small villages in northern Portugal that are still active. I love street food, so at some point I would have to travel the Silk Road and eat my way through every little street food stall there is. And there is the obvious – eating sardines in Sicily in the sun with spicy tomato sauce and a bottle of wine.

Shelley Boettcher Wine Access, CP reader...

After that, straight to Los Angeles, to Son of a Gun for the lobster rolls. I’d stop at Animal, too, for the pork belly sliders and a kale salad. From there, I’d head to Chicago for a stop at Purple Pig. I’d have to order one of everything, because, in my opinion, this is the best restaurant in America, so how could I choose just one item?

My foodie bucket list would involve reliving favourite food, drink and travel memories, rather than making new memories or trying new things.

I’d finish my Chicago bucket list stop with cocktails at The Violet Hour and an epic 26-course tasting menu at Alinea. The single best meal I’ve ever had! New York should be on the list too, but after the high that is Alinea, I think I’d just head back to Calgary, to kick the bucket with a bucket of gochujang chicken wings from Anju, friends, and a bottle of grand cru burgundy.

2) I would eat slabs of take-away pizza with our kids, watching gondolas on the edge of the water in Venice.

Kathy Richardier CP publisher/editor... 1) I want to do a Jane and Michael Stern and tootle around North America, in a zig-zag fashion, on the byways, not the highways, finding great eats in out-of-theway places, meeting the people who make the eats and the locals who eat the eats, having lots of “random event” adventures. 2) After eating my way through North America, if there’s still time, travelling on the Trans-Siberian Express from Moscow to Vladivostok is on the agenda. Or maybe this first, North America second.

Janet Henderson, CP account exec... 1) I’d return to the Dvor Dubokovic restaurant, located in Pitve, Croatia, in a 19th century house whose courtyard provides a magnificent view of the bay of Jelsa and the surrounding hills, abundant with pine forests and aromatic Mediterranean bushes. I would eat the traditional baked dish of lamb and vegetables – the Dalmatian peka – cooked in a metal pan with a bell-shaped lid (“under the bell”), that’s put into a fire’s hot coals and covered with the embers. 2) I’d also like to dine again in Tito’s cave, also in Croatia. It’s Vanity Fair’s pick for the “best barbecue” in the world, located high up in the hills on the Croatian island of Vis, under a cave where Tito ran his resistance during WWll. This 500-year-old homestead is now a tavern where fish, organic vegetables, and racks of lamb are grilled over hot coals.

46 novEMBER decemBER 2012

1) I would split a bag of potato chips and a beer with my husband while peoplewatching on a hot summer day in Florence.

3) I would drink beer with my cousins in Berlin. And more beer with my husband’s family in Denmark. 4) I would eat my aunt’s best-ever cabbage rolls in Saskatchewan, surrounded by a houseload of rowdy aunts and uncles and cousins. Then, I’d eat my mom’s bestever carrot cake and I wouldn’t feel guilty about the cream cheese icing. 5) I would drink a lot of good wine with my dearest friends. And, for once, I’d open up all of my best bottles. 6) Last, but not least, I’d want just one more beautiful latte from one of my favourite coffee shops, on a gorgeous Sunday morning with my family.

Shane Haywood Kamloops, B.C., CP reader... Oh my heavens, there’s not much time left to do all this! I’d better be on my way to Thailand. I just want to eat a couple of good meals there before I fly off to Italy. Ahh, so many fabulous meals to be eaten there, not to mention the wine to be drunk! I’ll be sure to have spaghetti with black truffle sauce in Pienza, and a heaping helping of cinghiale, perhaps in Monteriggioni. From Italy, it’s only a short hop to Switzerland where I’ll ride the cable car to the top of the Stanzerhorn where I’ll sip of a glass of white wine while drinking in the luscious views of snow capped peaks and dark green valleys. This will be accompanied by a large plate of Alpen macaroni (macaroni and cheese with potatoes and apple sauce as only the Swiss can make it). From Switzerland, I’ll make a quick trip to Angelina’s on the Rue de Rivoli in Paris for some serious desserts and people watching. After all this, I’ll make sure I’m home before the Big Day so that I can enjoy a big turkey dinner with family and friends. Ahhh, it’s been a good life. ✤

me taste! u , co N e em New dishes oN th

Looking for something New and Vibrant for your Veggies? Vibrant is a versatile unrefined whole oil that nutritiously enhances the taste of vegetables. Produced from pure, fresh Alberta-grown Canola seed, without harsh processing or additives, Vibrant Oil retains its natural yellow colour, flavour and healthy compounds. With half the saturated fat and 10 times the Omega 3s of Olive Oil, Vibrant is Canada’s healthier alternative!

Sold at Sunterra Markets and Calgary Co-op stores! For more info and recipes:

CANADIAN SUNSHINE IN A BOTTLE! Salad Dressing • Bread Dip • Marinade • Light Frying Oil noveMBER decemBER 2012


Creating a stir How Soup Sisters/Broth Brothers nourishes people in need, one bowl of soup at a time

A Canada-wide phenom The Soup Sisters’ kickoff event was held in 2009. Hapton invited 30 friends and together they made five different soups. What’s more, they had a great time doing it, sharing laughter and stories throughout the event, then enjoying some soup, salad, bread and wine when the work was done. Hapton asked participants in that inaugural event to tell their friends about Soup Sisters, thus creating a network that grew and spread. The program expanded locally, as new culinary partners came on board. The first to step up was The Cookbook Co. Cooks, joined later by Sunterra Market Keynote and Diamond Willow Artisan Retreat in Turner Valley. Many local chefs offer their services.

photo by Vireo Creative Communications

By Holly Quan

Ah, soup. When you’re hungry, it fills you up. When you’re cold, it warms you. When you’re down, it lifts your spirit. Soup is simple nourishment for body and soul. Imagine the profound benefit a bowl of lovingly made hot soup can have for someone in crisis. “Food is how we take care of each other,” observed Sharon Hapton, founder and CEO of Soup Sisters/Broth Brothers, a Calgary non-profit organization that supports women and children whose lives have been affected by family violence. “Think about it. When there’s some event in our lives – new babies, someone who’s feeling down, perhaps a death in the family – what do we do? We bake a cake, whip up a casserole. We comfort with food.”

Empty nest sparks an idea Hapton got the idea for Soup Sisters/Broth Brothers when her youngest child was leaving home for university. “The nest was looking empty and I started thinking about how I would fill that nurture void,” she recalled. “I had always been active in the community. Also, I’m a life-long soup maker. It dawned on me that I could put those pieces together.” And Soup Sisters was born.

Here’s how it works: you and a group – family,

friends, colleagues, church, whatever – book a Soup Sisters event at Each person pays $50 to cover expenses. A culinary partner with a commercial kitchen plays host supplying the venue and ingredients. Soup Sisters supplies the recipes, a chef or commercial cook supplies guidance, and you and your friends supply the labour. Then you make several kinds of soup, which is subsequently portioned, labelled and delivered to receiving partners. In Calgary, the recipients are the Women’s Emergency Shelter and The Doorway, a program for youth transitioning from street life. Each event is also an opportunity for a shelter representative to make a short presentation to the soup-making group to provide information about the shelter and its services.

48 novEMBER decemBER 2012

It was Hapton’s appearance on a CityLine TV program, taped in Toronto and broadcast across the country in March 2010, that launched Soup Sisters as a nation-wide phenomenon. “I knew it would resonate with people,” Hapton said, “but I never dreamed it would become so popular so fast.” There are now some 15 events in 10 cities across Canada every month. Each event produces 150 to 200 servings of nourishing soup. Since March 2009, Soup Sisters has delivered more than 60,000 containers of soup to 20 shelters, and there’s a growing network of more than 5,500 Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers participants. (Hapton created Broth Brothers to let the guys know they’re welcome to make soup too.) These events are open to anyone and they’re definitely familyfriendly gatherings where kids are welcome. They’re extrememly popular and sell out quickly.

Soup Sisters in the country When Pat Lothrop learned about Soup Sisters, she seized the chance to make a difference in her community. Pat and Doug Lothrop own Diamond Willow Artisan Retreat, a unique facility near Turner Valley, a 40-minute drive southwest of Calgary. Designed and built to host workshops and special gatherings, the kitchen at the retreat is large enough to accommodate a large group. Soup made at Diamond Willow goes to Rowan House Emergency Shelter, a facility for foothillsarea women and children in crisis. “I’ve always supported Rowan House, and hosting Soup Sisters events just made sense,” Lothrop said. Diamond Willow now hosts four or five Soup Sisters events annually. With Calgary-based events booking up months in advance, Diamond Willow is a great alternative venue.

“The retreat is designed for collaboration, learning and sharing,” said Lathrop. “And it feels great to make soup for people who are at a low point in their lives.” The most recent Diamond Willow event took place on a sunny Sunday afternoon in late September. Volunteers set out recipes and ingredients at each soup station, and put huge pots on the stovetop to get the soup stock simmering. Soup-makers came just after noon and got acquainted over wine and cheese. When guest chef Darren Nixon arrived (he’s owned Divine Café in Okotoks for many years), the work got started. The warm kitchen filled with the sounds of chopping and chatter, the sight of a few tears as mountains of onion piled up, and then the hearty smell of cooking soup. The first flurry was over in less than an hour. While the soups slowly bubbled, soupmakers relaxed over a meal. Then each team was invited back into the kitchen to taste and adjust seasonings, ladle soup into small containers and place a hand-lettered label on each container. Job done – in less than three hours. Why do it? Most volunteer to make soup as a means of giving back to their community. “It feels good to do something for people in need,” said one participant. Another added, “It gets us together, it’s a nice chance to talk and catch up.” But some had more personal reasons. “I once helped a friend escape from an abusive situation, we grabbed the kids and bolted late one night,” one participant recalled. “So I know what it’s like to need a safe place and a warm meal.” Arranging a Soup Sisters event is easy. Making the soup is easy. And when you’re done, you and your friends have a great feeling of connection to your community, not to mention a tummy full of warm, nourishing soup.

Hot off the stove! The Soup Sisters Cookbook was launched October 1st and is now available at bookstores everywhere. More than 100 recipes were donated by volunteers and chefs including Bonnie Stern, Anna Olson, Michael Stadtlander, Lucy Waverman, Massimo Capra, Michael Bonacini and Elizabeth Baird. The recipes are organized by season and the book includes advice on making and storing stock, equipment and techniques for successful soup making, and a list of essential pantry ingredients. It’s a great stocking stuffer! ✤ When researching this story, Holly Quan was so impressed with Soup Sisters that she is now the coordinator for Soup Sisters events at Diamond Willow Artisan Retreat. Come to the country to make soup!

Still & Sparkling Water On Tap 4 Stage Filtration System Produces an Unlimited Supply NO added SODIUM Lowest Cost Per Litre in the Industry Most Energy Efficient Equipment in the Industry Canadian Designed and Assembled

Drink To Your Health Inc. Vancouver - Calgary - Toronto - Ottawa - Montreal - Halifax

1.877.752.0808 noveMBER decemBER 2012


Classic Roast Beast Sunday Dinner The family always gathered for this if the creek didn’t rise or the locusts descend by Ellen Kelly

The long-standing tradition of gathering the clan for a Sunday family meal can be traced back to medieval times in the United Kingdom: villagers and serfs, who were at the beck and call of the land-owning squires six days a week, were generously allowed to feast on a spitted ox after Sunday church. Today, the practice of congregating around the family table at least once a week for a substantial repast no longer needs to acknowledge any such class or national boundaries. Growing up in Southern Alberta as I did, everyone knew exactly what Sunday dinner meant. It didn’t matter if your background was British, like us, or Italian, like my friend Theresa, or Ukrainian, like our neighbours down the street. You made it home for Sunday dinner or you died trying. In our house, my grandfather reigned supreme and even though the Sunday meal didn’t consist of anything on a spit, he always insisted on a large piece of roasted meat with potatoes and gravy. If anyone wanted a vegetable or a salad, that was their business. Furthermore, my grandmother, who could usually slide through the rest of the week’s desserts with a scoop of ice cream in half a cantaloupe or a plate of cookies, was expected to produce a real dessert for the occasion. We usually got pie, much to everyone’s delight. There was no running off to a basketball game or a piano lesson. You brought a guest only by prior arrangement, and if the entire family wasn’t present and accounted for, there had better be a good reason – like a plague of locusts or flood or famine. As many of my friends have attested, this practice often extended well into adulthood; I’ve heard countless stories of grown children expected to make their way back to the familial table every Sunday, come hell or high water. From a culinary standpoint, what usually comes to my mind when we talk about Sunday dinner is a substantial hunk of roasted beef served with mashed or roasted potatoes, carrots, maybe Brussels sprouts, peas or broccoli (something green, at any rate), and if you’re lucky, Yorkshire pudding with lots and lots of gravy. Although this is considered the classic, a roast chicken with scalloped potatoes or a leg of lamb with braised fennel will do just as nicely. In our busy, urban lives, with everyone dashing off in pursuit of their own diversions, it is the need to connect that really calls us home. A day spent creating a meal – any meal – shared with friends and family seated convivially around a dining room table is a tradition worth keeping – or reviving.

Cooking a roast of beef couldn’t be easier, but hardly any other procedure engenders more controversy. Here is one simple approach. If you have any questions, ask your mother. 50 novEMBER decemBER 2012

Always start with a very good piece of meat; a standing rib roast is an excellent choice. The fat marbled in the meat spells flavour and tenderness. Meat cooked on the bone will be more flavourful, but your butcher can cut off the rib bones if you don’t want to be bothered carving around them. This is often called a tuxedo rib roast. Before you get them cut off, however, remember that children and men love to gnaw on beef bones. Bring the meat to room temperature and rub it all over with plenty of salt and pepper. Coarsely cut up a couple of carrots, a stalk or two of celery, a large yellow onion and a halved bulb or two of garlic. Arrange the vegetables on the bottom of a roasting pan and set the meat on top. The vegetables will serve as your roasting “rack” and will provide outstanding flavour for the gravy. Pour a little water in the pan, then put the roast in a pre-heated 350°F oven and cook until done, about 20 minutes a pound for medium. Add or subtract 5 minutes for well done or rare respectively. Invest in a little instant-read thermometer. The internal temperature of meat is 125°F (50°C) for rare, 135°F (55°C) for medium and 150°F (65°C) for well done. Two things to remember: undercooking can be corrected, overcooking cannot be, and food continues to cook somewhat even when out of the oven. Pull the roast out of the oven and transfer it to a large warm platter. Tent the meat with tin foil and allow it to rest 15 to 20 minutes before you carve, giving the juices a chance to redistribute themselves in the meat so that they don’t all run out when you cut into it. The potatoes are next. While the roast is cooking, peel the potatoes and cut each one into quarters or even eighths, depending on the size. The idea is to create lots of sharp edges that will crisp up wonderfully in the fat. Rinse them well and cook at a simmer in unsalted water until almost done. They should still be intact, but you should be able to pierce them with a fork. Drain the potatoes and leave them in the colander to steam a bit. Carefully toss the potatoes in a little flour. In the hot oven, heat an ample amount of duck fat (or vegetable oil) in a baking pan for 10 minutes. Add the potatoes and turn so that all sides are covered in the fat. Place back in the oven. After 30 minutes, add 3 to 4 smashed cloves of garlic, and after 45 minutes, add sprigs of thyme and rosemary. Continue to cook the potatoes, turning them often, until they’re crisp and golden. Season them with fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Now for the gravy. While the meat is resting, put a couple of tablespoons of flour into a large jar with a tight-fitting lid with about 2 cups of warm water or stock and give it a really good shake, dissolving all the lumps. Put the roasting pan, with all the brown bits and vegetables, over low heat and pour in the flour-water. Stir and scrape up the bits from the bottom of the pan as the gravy thickens. Add more liquid until the consistency you desire is achieved. Season with salt and pepper, and don’t be afraid to add a beef bouillon cube if you want a heartier flavour. Strain and keep warm. Vegetables and salad, optional. ✤ Ellen Kelly is a chef and regular contributor to City Palate.

• Organic and Local Produce • Gluten-Free and Allergy-Friendly Selections • Supplements and Body Care • Community Events Visit us on Facebook!

Amaranth Whole Foods Market 7 Arbour Lake Drive NW • 403.547.6333 Amaranth Health and Wellness Centre #378, 5222-130 Avenue SE • 403.253.2711 (Supplements, body care, gluten free food and practitioner clinic at the South location) noveMBER decemBER 2012


delicious We Are All About... Selling It

OUR Retail StORe... Specialty Food Ingredients gathered from around the world Cookbooks Over 3000 cookbooks in stock Kitchen Wares Gourmet cookware, utensils and gadgets Gift Baskets 1) Pick a basket 2) Fill it up 3) Let us wrap it and deliver it!

and CheCK out ouR neW onLIne BoutIQue!

Making It

OUR CateRing COmpany... Custom Catering From outdoor barbecues to formal weddings Private Cooking Classes Custom designed for your group Corporate events Host your event in our state-of-the-art kitchen

Teaching It

OUR COOking SChOOl... demo Cooking classes Sit back, learn and enjoy hands-on classes Roll up your sleeves and tie up your apron strings Check our website at the end of November for our new 2013 classes!

Travelling to It

OUR eUROpean CUlinaRy eSCapeS... the Mediterranean coast of turkey in the spring the south of France in the spring tuscany, Italy in the fall

We Are All Things Culinary... THE COOKBOOK CO. COOKS

722-11th Avenue SW Phone 403-265-6066, ext.1 Fax 403-262-3322 52 novEMBER decemBER 2012

where to find us Upon publication, City Palate is distributed through the Friday Globe and Mail home delivery. You will also find City Palate at over 200 specialty food, wine and related retailers, including the following locations:

4th Spot Kitchen & Bar 80th and Ivy A Ladybug Organic Foods Amaranth Whole Foods Art Central Avec restaurant Barbecues Galore Bernard Callebaut locations Big Fish Big Rock Grill Billingsgate Seafood Bin 905 Bite Groceteria Black Diamond Bakery, Black Diamond Blu Seafood Market Blush Lane Organic Market Boomtown Pub Bowness Health Foods Boyd’s Seafood Store/Restaurant Breakaway Cafeteria, SAIT Britannia Hardware & Ornamental Bumpy’s Café CSN Wine & Spirits Caffè Beano Caffe Rosso Calgary Co-op Liquor Stores Calgary Farmers’ Market Canmore Wine Merchant Cappuccino King Casel Marché Community Natural Foods Compleat Cook locations Cork Fine Wine Cornerstone Music Café Craft Beer Market Cravings Market Restaurant CRMR at Home Crossroads Market Crowfoot Liquor Store Daily Globe Decadent Desserts Durango Kitchenwares Eau Claire Wine Market Embarcadero Franca’s Perfect Gift & Café Italia Fresh Kitchen Globe Cinema Good Earth Café locations Gunther’s Fine Baking Happy Cooker Emporium Higher Ground Highlander Wines & Spirits Home Evolution Hotel Alma Hotel Arts Hyatt Hotel Il Sogno Inglewood Wine Merchant Illichman’s Sausage Inspirati Fine Linens Italian Store (Scarpone’s) Italian Supermarket J. Webb Wine Merchant Janice Beaton Fine Cheese/FARM Java Jamboree, Cochrane Jelly Modern Doughnuts Kawa Espresso Bar Kensington Riverside Inn Kensington Wine Market

Kingsland Farmers’ Market Knifewear KoolSpace Wine Cellars La Vita è Bella Lazy Loaf ’n’ Kettle Leonidas Chocolates Lina’s Italian Market Living Room Restaurant Los Chilitos Manuel Latruwe Belgian Patisserie Maple Leaf Grille, Banff Maria’s Fine Wines Mercato Mise en Place (Meez) Mountain Mercato, Canmore Mount Royal College Book Store Muse Nellie’s Café locations NOtaBLE Restaurant Orange Works Kitchen & Home Oolong Tea House OverEasy Restaurant Pasu Farm, Carstairs Planet Organic Market Plaza Theatre Prairie Mill Bakery Priddis Greens Golf Club Pudding Yarn Pulcinella Purple Perk Coffee Rasoi Kitchen Red Tree Kitchen/Catering Richmond Hill Wines Rubaiyat Gallery Rustic Sourdough Bakery SAIT 4 Nines Restaurant Salsita Savour Fine Foods Second Cup Coffee locations Second to None Meats & Deli locations Ship & Anchor Silk Road Spices Spolumbo’s Deli Springbank Cheese locations Steeps Urban Tea House Stirr! Adventures in Food, Black Diamond Sunnyside Market Sunterra Market locations Taste Restaurant Thai Sa-On The Calgary Tower The Cookbook Co. Cooks The Main Dish Tiffin Curry and Roti House Tres Marias Food Market Uptown Theatre Urban Baker Valballa Deli, Canmore Vero Bistro Moderne Village Ice Cream Wild Rose Brewery Wildernest Dream Café Willow Park Wines & Spirits, WPV Wine Bar Kensington With the Times Without Papers Pizza Wonton King YMCA Eau Claire Zest Kitchenware

and find us on the web...

read us online. check out our recipe archive. and Follow us on facebook!



Tasting Centre Locations Beddington 8220 Centre Street NE, Calgary Crowfoot 39 Crowfoot Way NW, Calgary

Get Your Gift Certificates Today All other presents now seem somehow inadequate.

Before Dec. 31 % Off 25

25% Off Valid from Jan 2 until Feb 28 (except Feb 14). After Feb 28 certificate value is original price paid.

Also valid at:


Book Your Christmas Party Now! Contact Deanna 403-233-2433

wHere foodies love to dr ink 607 11th Ave S.W. | 403.233.2433 |

Oakridge 2570 Southland Drive SW, Calgary For tickets email: For more tasting events visit:

Get to Know Rum

Join us as we raise our sails and head off on a voyage that will expose you to the many different styles and flavours of rum from around the world. After this evening, you will have a new appreciation for one of the world’s most beloved spirits. Crowfoot: November 8, 7pm - 9pm • $40 per person

Vividly Vodka

The liquor is clear, but the flavours are definitely colourful. Vodka has long been considered a favourite spirit of bartenders. Discover the history, styles and flavours, both traditional and wacky, that this much-loved spirit has to offer. We will learn how to make a classic martini and some easy and crowd pleasing cocktails too. Beddington: November 8, 7pm - 9pm • $40 per person

Fireside Wines – Ports, Sherries, Cognacs and Armagnacs

Spend a cozy evening with us by the fireplace in our tasting room, as we delve into the world of fireside sippers and explore ports, sherries, cognacs and a few other delicious surprises that will have you ready to put your favourite slippers on and snuggle in for a great evening. Oakridge: November 15, 7pm - 9pm • Crowfoot: December 1, 7pm - 9pm • $40 per person

Holiday Entertaining – Fun with Food and Wine

Happy Holidays

Join Calgary’s own Julie Van Rosendaal for a night of old-fashioned girlfriend fun. Julie will share some easy and tasty recipes you can whip up when entertaining for the holidays. We will be pairing each dish with some terrific must-have wines. Oakridge: November 22, 7pm - 9pm • $35 per person

Gooey Cheese and Wine - New Twists on Kitchen Favourites

Does your heart sing and mouth water at the thought of fresh, hot and gooey melted cheese? Well if so, you won’t want to miss this night in the tasting room with Calgary’s own Chef Wade. You will be amazed watching Wade turn your favourite childhood dishes into grownup delights, which we will, of course, pair up with our own tasty ideas. Beddington: November 24, 7pm - 9pm • $35 per person

Wine and Food for Thought – An Evening with Meals on Wheels

Join us for a special evening as we pair up with Meals on Wheels to bring you a delicious evening that will showcase the wonderful program and hard work that is being done by this amazing organization. We will be collecting donations of winter hats and gloves to be used for gifts during the holiday season. Crowfoot: November 29, 7pm - 9pm • $50 per person

Aromatic Winter Whites

Never wear white shoes after Labour Day is a hard and fast rule, but white wines taste great in the fall and this class is sure to bring a “wow” to your lips. Join us as we showcase whites that are must-haves for the cooler season and how food-friendly and versatile they truly are. Oakridge: November 30, 7pm - 9pm • $25 per person

Scotch 101

We have specially created this fun and informative evening for anyone who wants to know a bit more about the world’s different whisky styles and flavours. This class will cover the history, production methods and tasting techniques that will have you feeling in-the-know by the end of the evening. Crowfoot: November 30, 7pm - 9pm • $40 per person

Holiday Cocktails

from all of us at

“Snowball”, “Cuppa Good Cheer’”, “Candy Cane Swirl”, “Frosty Noggin” and, of course, “Rudolph the Red Nose Reinbeer”; join us for this festive and fun class that is sure to get you in the holiday spirit. We will teach you how to WOW your holiday guests with some of our favourite holiday cocktails. Oakridge: December 7, 7pm - 9pm • $40 per person

“Like Us” on Facebook. Get great recipes and stay up-to-date on our latest tasting events. || 514 514 seventeen seventeen avenue avenue sw sw || 403.228.9830 403.228.9830 noveMBER decemBER 2012


Your holiday wine covered. Find unique and affordable wines at J.Webb Wine Merchant that you will be proud to share this season.

J.Webb Wine Merchant

Stirrings around Calgary

turkey alert! turkey alert! n Time for a heritage-breed turkey. Since 1958, four generations of the Winters family have taken their turn raising naturally fed, free-range turkeys in Dalemead. Half of their 480 acres are now certified organic to feed the organically raised turkeys they added to the farm in 2000 and an organic heritage breed called Bronze Orlopp in 2010. The bronzed beauty is plump, golden and delicious. This is one bronze bird that will win you gold medal reviews and help promote diversity of breeds in the poultry livestock industry at the same time. The Winters also go the extra mile and open their farm on December 23 if you’d like to pick up a fresh (pre-ordered) bird, or they’ll meet you in the southeast or northeast quadrants of the city with fresh birds later that same day, Order early!

restaurant ramblings

Glenmore Landing: 90th Ave. and 14th St. SW Casel Marché: 17th Ave. and 24th St. SW

(45 minute free underground parking)

w w w. j w e b b . n e t


Purveyors of family run, sustainable wineries since 1985.

n Air Canada’s magazine, enRoute, picks its 10 Best Restaurants in Canada 2012 – Calgary scored TWO of the best. Oh, we are soooo good! Number 2: Model Milk. “Justin Leboe is taking his cooking down home without dumbing it down... perfectly tender southern-fried rabbit, the golden crust stung by hot pepper vinegar, sits on ethereally creamy grits.” Number 9: Borgo. “...a workhorse of a restaurant. It hustles from day to dark with the clatter of espresso cups and shared plates of the cuisine’s greatest hits – golden arancini, imported salumi, crudi and cicchetti...” n Don’t miss the 2nd annual Bon Appétit Banff Food Festival, November 15 to 25, when participating restaurants offer three-course menus at a prix fixe price of $25, $35 or $45. Participating restaurants include Banff Ave. Brewing Co., Bear St. Tavern, Bison Restaurant & Terrace, Castello Ristorante, Fairmont Banff Springs, El Toro, Evergreen Restaurant, Giorgio’s Trattoria, Maple Leaf Grill & Lounge and Three Ravens Restaurant and Wine Bar. n One of the wonderful old guards, Cilantro, has launched its first new menu – in 22 years! Woo-hoo! Chef Ken Canavan has pleasured Calgarians for 21 years with his tasty southwestCalifornia fare, now he tosses in new flavours while holding on to old faves. Look for the likes of a Duck Confit Focaccia Sandwich and Pulled Elk Flatbread Pizza. Check it out at 338 - 17th Ave SW. View the new menu at

54 novEMBER decemBER 2012

n The new menu items at Newport Grill on Lake Bonavista will get you salivating just reading about them: Smoked Mushroom and Bacon Bisque with a Truffled Boar Crisp, Moroccanspiced Wild Boar Rasher, Bison Short Ribs, Buttermilk Chicken Supreme, Espresso-Crusted Beef Tenderloin, Lobster Papardelle with ButterPoached Lobster Tail and Steamed Mussels. Wine down Wednesday is always popular, as is Date Nite every Thursday. Take in the beautiful lake view while you enjoy good food. You can book your holiday party here. The new menu is at n Check out the new Gerry Thomas Gallery at 602-11th Ave. SW. Along with art, it includes an art deco bar and a full-service catering company. While you’re there, have a bite at the gallery’s neighbour, Canvas Coffee and Wine Bar, in the traditional art house café style – stylish and fun. Best of all, chef Kenny Kaechele is doing the food. n Añejo is open! We can’t wait to see what the Living Room dudes have cooked up for our delectation – Mexico in a contemporary, unexpected style, we’re betting. Hand-crafted tacos, fresh, local ingredients, molcajete prepared table-side, 108 brands of tequila... oh, my! The slightly scary “new face” on 4th Street got our attention, now we have to see what it’s all about. We just know Añejo will be all about fun! n Vin Room will open a second location in the west end of the city at 8561- 8A Ave. SW late fall. Same great wine list, same great tapas menu. Beautifully designed by Sally Healy, the new Vin Room will boast a 14-ft. wine wall. n A pretty, new eatery has opened in the northwest, Shigatsu Japanese Lounge, at 3106 - 4th St. NW. Shigatsu serves sushi and sashimi, plus palate-perking fusion dishes and more than 10 different kinds of cold sake. Check Shigatsu out on Urbanspoon and its Facebook page. n FARM and Janice Beaton Fine Cheese invite you to the 2nd Annual Kitchen Party, November 7. Great cheese and charcuterie, FARM bites and great wine. Don’t miss it! Phone 403-229-0900 to reserve. n The beautiful, sexy Muse Restaurant and Lounge has new owners – Stephen Deere, formerly of Escoba Wine Bar & Bistro, and Heather Wighton, formerly of Rouge and Home Tasting Room. But don’t worry, the new owners will retain the Muse name and tradition. J.P. Pedhirney, formerly at Rouge, takes charge as the exec chef.

n Avec Bistro hosts Camille Zanette, from the champagne house of Devaux, for a dinner paired with exquisite champagnes and sparkling wines, November 21. You will be welcomed with canapés, followed by four courses created by chef Darnell Japp. Only 40 seats are available at $175 per person. Contact Avec Bistro at 587-352-0964 for your reservation before it’s too late! n Visit River Café throughout November and enjoy a special Friends & Family rate of $75 on a six-course fish and game multicourse tasting menu. Check the web site for menu details. Make Christmas dinner easy on yourself with a fully prepared, ready-to-roast turkey dinner to take home. Complete menu details at River Café gift certificates make great gifts – purchase online, how convenient! River invites you to its seasonal tasting menu and wine pairing for your New Year’s Eve celebration. Reserve at 403-261-7670. River Café’s adorable sibling, Boxwood, offers whole freerange rotisserie chickens to go. Enjoy a three-course family-style Sunday Supper for $35 every Sunday. Warm up at Boxwood after Remembrance Day ceremonies at Central Memorial Park – all proceeds to the Calgary Poppy Fund. Have a Boxwood “kitchen party” for groups of 30 to 50 for your private holiday celebration. for all the tasty details.

wine wanderings n Tastings at the Cellar Wine Store: November 7, The Loire & Languedoc Roussillon; November 14, Super Tuscans; November 28, Piedmont; December 5, Bubbles Bubbles Bubbles; December 12, Port and Chocolate. Details at or contact or 403-503-0730. n Metrovino “Tastings Ahead”: November 1, Magical Mystery Tour (Blind Tasting) $50; November 6, Château de Beauregard $50; November 7, A Spanish Profile $55; November 14, Willamette Valley vs Burgundy $80; November 15, Beautiful Beaujolais $45; November 20, Movie Night Munchies & Wine $50; November 21, Shiraz O’Rama $55; November 27, Bonneau du Martray $250; November 28, Fizztival (Special Event) $55. To reserve, phone 403205-3356 or book online at metrovino. com/calendar. n The High Performance Rodeo and One Yellow Rabbit present Wine Stage at Devonian Gardens, Saturday, January 26 at 7:30 p.m., 324 - 8th Ave SW (access via Plus 15). Sexy, stylish and sophisticated, Wine Stage celebrates its 14th year as a popular wine and food event. continued on page 56

Vancouver’s Premier Culinary Centre at the entrance to Granville Island

1040-8TH STREET SW PHONE: 403.265.0244 HOURS: M-F 6:30-5 • S&S 7:30-4 CLOSED HOLIDAYS

Award winning espresso, cappuccinos, and lattes.

Professional Culinary Arts • Professional Baking & Pastry Arts • 1-Year Dual Diploma Program • WSET wine programs

We always pull you the best espresso shot – minimum double shots in our drinks. Muffins - Fresh baked, from scratch, all morning. Soul warming oatmeal – over 25 toppings to choose from. Fresh grilled Panini’s, homemade Mac & Cheese. Gooey Grilled Cheese, just like home. Made from scratch goodies – like Grandma’s Where service & cleanliness come first. Great shaded patio. Make yourself at home at Bumpy’s.

EAT-IN TAKE-AWAY CATERING 1-800-416-4040 noveMBER decemBER 2012


stockpot continued from page 55

Fridays are going to be rough

Participating wine merchants include Banff Wine Store, Bin 905, J. Webb Wine Merchant, Kensington Wine Market, Metrovino, Richmond Hill Wines and Vinestone Wine Co. All proceeds support One Yellow Rabbit Performance Theatre. Tickets are available online at whatson/showdetails, or phone 403-294-9494 or at the Epcor Centre Box Office, on the main floor at 2258th Ave SE. n Look for the JoieFarm 2010 Vintage Reserve Series newly released: 2010 Reserve Chardonnay and PTG (Passe-Tout-Grains, a burgundian blend of pinot noir and gamay), plus one new wine, the 2010 Reserve Pinot Noir. These wines have received outstanding reviews. Find these fine wines throughout Calgary at the better wine stores. n Boxed wine comes of age, via the Okanagan Crush Pad, and it’s very well priced, too. We’ve been loving our Haywire rosé, three litres for $55 that we ordered online and it arrived very quickly. Just put it on a fridge shelf, very convenient. Visit

beer bustlings

Entertainment Nights every Thursday at Hotel Blackfoot There’s no better place to be on Thursday nights than Hotel Blackfoot. The Lobby Lounge has live music every week and check out our Jazz Nights Nov 15th and Dec 20th. Unwind and have a good time, we even have a room for you.

n Our friend, Rockin’ Ron Shewchuk, Baron of Barbecue North, would love this beer. He can’t tolerate gluten, but Brasseurs Sans Gluten, a tiny Quebec brewery, brews only glutenfree beer that’s great beer for the category. Alberta is the first major market outside of Quebec. Brewing for just over a year, Brasseurs has won bronze, silver and gold in the glutenfree category at the World Cup of Beer for a sweep of the medals. Find these Glutenberg beers – American Pale Ale, Red Ale, Glutenberg 8 and Blonde at many liquor/wine stores, such as Coop Wine, Spirits, Beer, Willow Park, Kensington Wine Market, Highlander and Bin 905. Drink these at places like Brewster’s, Buzzard’s, Model Milk and National Beer Hall. Visit for more info. n On the same subject, another winner on the gluten-free beer front is Mongozo Premium Pilsner, the world’s first gluten-free, fair-trade, organic beer crowned the World’s Best Gluten-Free Lager at the World Beer Awards.

cooking classes

56 novEMBER decemBER 2012

n At the Cochrane CookHouse: this not-for-profit enterprise is dedicated to connecting local people with local food and local businesses. The facility includes a shared-use commercial kitchen, local food market and dining area. The food market highlights a

variety of products sourced from within a 200 km radius of Cochrane. The revenue that is generated goes back into the facility to support community food security initiatives. Cooking class highlights include – cheese making, canning and preserving, make-ahead appetizers, cooking with Indian spices and herbs. The cooks in the kitchen include Made by Marcus, Twisted Basil, Copper Horse Catering. Visit for details. n Join The Compleat Cook for specialized, small group cooking classes. The November December schedule includes: Flavours of India (featuring Butter Chicken), Portuguese Persuasions, Homemade Pizza, MakeAhead Appetizers, Friday Night Date Night (French Connection), Knife Skills, Easy Entertaining, Appetizer Party (The French Way) and Flavours of India (Appetizers). Details at 403-253-4831. n At Sunterra Market, Keynote: Make a splash over the holiday season with a class dedicated to the triplethreat turducken – turkey stuffed with a duck stuffed with a chicken. You’ll learn all the turkey classics too, on December 18 at COMMUNITYtable (200 - 12th Ave S.E.). Includes cocktails, recipes, tasting and a buffet-style meal for $49.99. For a complete cooking class calendar, visit n ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen: November 3, Bread Making, 3 - 5 p.m., $65; November 17, Hot and Cold Hors d’Oeuvres for Holiday Entertaining, 6:30 - 9 p.m., $85; November 24, Chef’s Table, Contemporary Indian Dining, 6:30 - 9 p.m., $85; December 1, Christmas Baking, 3 - 5 p.m., $65. ATCO Learning Centre, 909 - 11th Ave. SW, 403-245-7630. n At The Cookbook Co. Cooks: Cooking with Wild Game, A Night Out Couples Classes, Thai Classics, A Spice Primer, Cake Boss Decorating, Cookie Craft, Christmas Baking, A French Christmas Celebration, Wickedly Delicious Winter Salads, Tour of Italy with Allan Shewchuk, Girls’ Night Out – Cocktails & Hors d’Oeuvres, Book Launch of Soup Sisters Cookbook (November 5), Long Table Dinner (November 6), Making your own Buffalo Mozzarella and Fior de Latte, Specialty Dinner – Food & Wine from Southwest France (November 15), and much more. For the complete calendar, visit

general stirrings n Dishcrawls are guided food tours that take groups of 25 to 100 local foodies to four different restaurants in one night to sample signature dishes and talk to chefs and owners

about their culinary vision – all within walking distance. Dishcrawl events are in Edmonton, Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto and now Calgary. Hosted by Jessie Cayabo, Dishcrawls are held on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays (traditionally, slower nights for restaurants) and cost each Dishcrawler $49. The first event is on November 13 and features four Beltline restaurants. Details at n Join the Calgary Public Library Foundation for the inaugural Bob’s Eye Opener Scotch Tasting featuring diverse scotches and experts who will guide guests in a robust sensory discovery of scotch, November 8. Hors d’oeuvres will be served. The 2012 Bob Edwards Award winner, Mary Walsh, will make a brief appearance as will Bob Edwards himself. A portion of the ticket price is eligible for a tax receipt. Tickets and details at 403-592-3579 or n On December 20, The Huron Carole returns to the stage helping to raise funds and awareness for the Calgary Food Bank. It’s a joyful night of Christmas music, storytelling, and seasonal messages of peace and harmony, with Tom Jackson, Sarah Slean, jazz-pop musicologist Matt Dusk, and Juno award winner Susan Aglukark. At the Jack Singer, ticket info at

n Chef-Guided Tours of the Calgary Farmers’ Market, Sunday, December 9th, 9 a.m. - 11 a.m. or Saturday, December 15th, 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Chef/culinary Instructor Judy Wood or chef/cookbook author Pierre Lamielle will introduce you to their favourite vendors, while you sample and learn about market produce with special holiday cooking ideas from the chefs. $50 includes snacks, welcome gift and coupon. Tickets @ or call Karen Anderson. 403-968-2783. n ‘Tis the season… to eat, drink and be merry! With Christmas party season in full swing, check out the new Sunterra Market catering menu. It includes everything you need to create a memorable event for your corporate lunches, weddings or holiday celebrations. Pick up a copy of the menu in Sunterra’s markets or online at n Amaranth Whole Foods Market NW, Dr. Tracy Thomson, who operates an integrative medical centre in Canmore and Gaia Clinic, November 7th, 7:30 p.m., at the Crowfoot YMCA. To register, phone 403-547-6576 and quote course code #78155. Amaranth Health & Wellness Centre SE, Dr. Joe Klassen ND, talks about Road Bumps to Weight Loss on November 19th, 7 p.m. Phone 403-253-2711 to register. Classes are $20. You receive a $10 gift card to the store and $10 goes to

charity. Both stores offer 20% off on all supplements and body care products the first Wednesday of every month. n Pick up the perfect stocking stuffers for the foodies in your life. Springbank Cheese Co. has released its first edition of a pairing guide for cheese, wine, beer and scotch. And look for seasonal specialties, including delicious Scottish cheddars, the popular Scottish fruit-shaped cheddars with pear schnapps and orange, and Highland whiskey liqueurs. Great “cheesy” gifts from Springbank Cheese Co. n Second To None Meats has expanded to a new location in Willow Park Village. The new location features specialty retail items that complement the meat products, such as Fleur de Sel, olive oils, and fresh produce. For more information about the new store, the ranchers who provide the local products, and the butchers who work at Second To None Meats, call 403-2252788 or visit n The Azzuro de Bufalo, from Glengarry Fine Cheese, is made with holstein, brown Swiss and water buffalo milk, aged six months. It’s a creamy, full-flavoured blue available only at Say Cheese Fromagerie. Delicious with Wendell Estates raw

lunch • dinner • before theatre • after theatre

Taste the tradition Eau Claire Market On the 2nd level


Join Nicco and his international staff for exceptional service as they globetrot you through the wine world at Eau Claire Wine Market

together offering their much-loved way Mom used to make it!

cucina italiana

continued on page 58

Margaret and Pam are back home-cooked meals. You know, the


YOur MOuntaIn GEtawaY…

Specialty spirits and beer also offered

YOur MOuntaIn

All your old Primal Grounds favourites, and more! Find us at Kingsland Market.


Receive a FRee $10 giFt caRd when you buy $100 in giFt caRds. Be Inspired. Be Engaged. Be One.

While you’re at the Kingsland Farmers’ Market, check out PriMal souPs and hold the Mustard too! 7711 Macleod Trail S (in the old McKay Pontiac dealership)

tel 403-262-9463 Offer available until Dec 22, 2012.

Cannot be combined with any other offer or promotion.

187 Kananaskis Way, Canmore T. 403.679.7179

Just inside the Eau Claire Mall southwest entrance across from the Sheraton noveMBER decemBER 2012


stockpot continued from page 57

e h t e m o h g n i Br ! y a d e h t f o h cat c Fresh ssels u M I PE Fresh Ahi Tun a


l e r e k c i P Manit oba

Check out our fresh seafood options at any Co-op meat department. 58 novEMBER decemBER 2012

honey, from Manitoba, it will be part of a luxury cheese basket for the Christmas season which will also include other fine cheeses from Glengarry – Fleur en Lait (washed rind), aged Lankaaster traditional gouda, Celtic Blue and a rosewood-handle cheese knife. The luxury cheese basket is a collaboration of Glengarry Fine Cheese and Say Cheese Fromagerie. n City Palate, The Cookbook Co. and MetroVino host a “long-table” dinner, November 6, 6:30 p.m. Get to know your dining neighbours around one long table while eating good food and drinking good wine. Tickets ($95) at The Cookbook Co., 403-265-6066. “Long Table Dinner,” at 724 - 11th Ave. SW, next door to The Cookbook Co. n The Salt Cellar has new venues for all-natural sea salts – the Kingsland Farmers’ Market on MacLeod Tr. and Bite Groceteria in Inglewood. Find them at Millarville and Spruce Meadows for great Christmas items. Check

n Get “cozy” with Bernard Callebaut chocolates for the holidays. the “Cozy Collection” of chocolates, just in time for gift-giving and receiving, is predicated on warm comfort food flavours we all love – Peanut Butter and Jelly, Butter Ganache Gingerbread, Pumpkin Caramel and Sea Salt Caramel. Chocolates for grown-ups for sure! Other Callebaut holiday favourites include Chocolate Yule Logs crafted from dark or milk chocolate and filled with an assortment of chocolates. Everyone should have a Callebaut Advent Calendar, a refillable, reusable calendar filled with seasonal chocolates – the perfect (early) gift for anyone. Limited quantities, don’t wait! And Hand-Dipped Cherries – organic B.C. cherries marinated in Italian liquor, then enveloped in fondant, hand-dipped in dark chocolate, then rolled in chocolate shavings. ‘Tis the season – eat chocolate! n The MacKillop family raises Highland cattle, a Scottish heritage breed of cattle suited to cold Canadian winters, near Nanton. Their good beef is available at JoJo’s Café, Kayben Farm, near Okotoks. It’s free of artificial hormones and antibiotics – and tastes great too! You can order it directly from the farm via email at mackillopbeef@ or by calling 403-336-2465. You can order a box of assorted cuts, or a quarter- or half-animal, and ground beef. Some say Highland cattle make the best ground beef! Pricing and ordering information is circulated in a customer newsletter – join the email list to get yours. The MacKillop’s have a Facebook page, with a web site in the works.

n Janice Beaton Fine Cheese has a regular supply of dragon’s breath cheese, that Nova Scotia blue that has a serious cult following. It will be part of the cheese lineup on November 7th at the second annual Kitchen Party. Nine wine providers serve wine with the cheese, charcuterie, and FARM food all evening. Call 403.229.0900 to book. Christmas orders for cheese platters and gifts at JBFC and festive holiday gatherings at FARM. n Don’t miss the Celiac Market, Saturday, November 17, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at Parkdale Community Centre, 3512 - 5 Ave. NW. Get ready for holiday cooking! Vendors from Alberta and across Canada sell glutenfree products. Bring cash, as many vendors do not take credit cards. All are welcome! Free admission for members. $2 for non-members. n Rocky Mountain Soap Co., makers of great all-natural body products, offers beautiful “flavours” for the holidays – Sugar Pear and Vanilla Candy – in a wide range of great products, including body scrub, body wash, body butter and lotion, and lip butter, all available individually or in gift sets for giving and receiving. This is good stuff – your body will thank you. Available at Rocky Mountain Soap Co. outlets in Calgary and at other retailers. Visit for where to buy.

n Look for these fine products from Edmonton-based VitalyTeas, maker of Canada Teas – premium brands of organic whole-leaf teas – and Canada Chai concentrates, with Assam black tea, in original, sweetened with Alberta honey and Quebec maple syrup, unsweetened and caffeine-free unsweetened. Retailers can get them through Worldwide Specialty Foods, 403-255-6262. n Congratulations to two of Phil and Sebastian Coffee Roasters’ baristas, Ben Put and Jeremy Ho, who competed at the Canadian Barista Competition recently in Toronto and took second place and Canadian Barista Champion respectively. It’s the first time a Calgarian won the competition. Well done, you coffee hounds! Go get your coffee at Phil and Sebastian’s and shake their hands. n Our very own Bles-Wold Dairy in Lacombe now makes a decadent Greek-style yogurt that we found in Co-op stores. It’s got strawberries on the bottom that you mix into the yogurt – delish! It is 8 percent M.F., however, so it’s like dessert rather than breakfast, but who says you can’t have dessert for breakfast! We don’t. But we’d like to see this good local yogurt maintain its Greek-style texture in a lower-fat version. We also think continued on page 60

Blue Door Oil & Vinegar Christmas Shopping List Mom – cranberry pear balsamic & lemon olive oil Dad – truffle salt, garlic olive oil & butter olive oil Jill – dark chocolate balsamic & blood orange olive oil The Watts – gift basket of assorted oils, vinegars, salts. Grammie – pumpkin spice balsamic & wild mushroom and sage olive oil With a decadent selection of over 50 olive oils & balsamic vinegars, we have the perfect gift for everyone on your list. Ask us about our corporate gift program!

Blue Door Oil & Vinegar

8561 8A Ave SW (take Bow Trail West & turn right on 85th St.) noveMBER decemBER 2012


stockpot continued from page 59 lower fat would allow the strawberries to have a stronger presence. We like strawberries.

In Downtown Calgary

R E S TA U R A N T & L O U N G E

n Agriculture for Life Harvest Gala fundraiser, November 3, boosts support for youth-focused school programs aimed at improving farm safety and creating enriched understanding of the positive contribution of agriculture in Alberta. Tickets $250 or $2,000 for a table of eight. Special discounts for not-for-profit organizations, agricultural post-secondary students, clubs and associations. Tickets at or 1-877-682-2153. n Make a Big Stir! Join the Soup Sisters at Calgary’s first-ever Big Stir, a one-night, soup-making extravaganza on November 20th at the Calgary Farmers’ Market. Three hundred Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers, celebrity chefs and emcee Dave Kelly will make 1,000 bowls of soup for women and children in Calgary’s womens’ shelters. Create a stir in the community, raise awareness during Family Violence Prevention Month and warm hearts, one bowl at a time. For information on buying a “chopping table” at The Big Stir, contact: and visit: n Greens, Eggs & Ham has moved its great food from the Kingsland Farmers’ Market to the Crossroads Farmers’ Market, in case you wondered where they’d gone. Check them out for Christmas turkeys.

French Inspired & Locally Grown. Classic North American Cuisine

Lunch: Monday – Friday 11:30am – 2:00pm Dinner: Monday – Saturday 4:30pm – close Closed Sundays

403 265 9595 • 107 Eighth Avenue SW

60 novEMBER decemBER 2012

n Culinary & Wine Tour of AlsaceGermany-Austria, October 5 to 18, with tourmeister Peter Blattmann. Visit World Heritage Roman monuments in Trier, Germany’s oldest city. Take part in hands-on cooking classes with celebrity chefs preparing regional delicacies at historic restaurants. Taste the world’s most acclaimed rieslings and unique grüner veltliners with wine makers at centuries-old estates. Cruise scenic rivers lined with the world’s steepest vineyards. Indulge in the world-renowned pastries, concerts and operas of Vienna. For details, or call 1-403-230-5375 or e-mail n Primal Grounds Café is back by popular demand! Now open at Kingsland Farmers’ Market, the muchloved Primal Grounds Café is back. Margaret, Pam and the gang are together again and serving up all the tasty, comfort-food meals and desserts they became so well known for. Welcome back! n Good news for Bridgeland! Gunther’s Fine Baking will open another bakery just across the street from the old City Bakery location

at 124 - 8th St. NE just in time for holiday entertaining too. Tradition and authenticity in breads, rolls and pastries, with no preservatives, is Gunther’s hallmark. Look for traditional Christmas stollen and the signature honey nuts, classic spice cookies that are as good with wine as they are with tea. (403-998-1877) n Check out the newly renovated Salumeria Groceria (the Italian Store at 5140 Skyline Way NE) for a stellar shopping experience. All the great Italian and Mediterranean products you’d expect and much more. Stock up on baking supplies, cheeses, deli meats and have lunch while you’re at it in their excellent, newly renovated caffè. Don’t miss the Eggplant Parmesan or the addictive Frittati Dolci (sugared chewy donuts), just some of our favourites. (403-275-8222) n Seasoned Solutions Culinary Tour of Portugal, October 3 to 17, with Gail Hall, culinary tour expert. Tour outline and costs on the web site by November 30 or phone Gail at 780-437-0761 or email n Crave Furniture Ltd., a contemporary Italian furniture store at 4456 - 42nd Ave. SE, now sells Vosges Chocolate (587-351-2949). n Sidewalk Citizen Bakery is now making pizza, Fridays and Saturdays, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Toppings change weekly. Stop by for “The People’s Lunch,” $10, available from Tuesday to Friday, 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Lunch includes a fresh sandwich with everything made in-house. Sandwich choices tweeted daily - @avivfried or @chefcolinm. 5524 - 1A St SW., 403-457-2245. n Knifewear is growing. Now in Kelowna at 2983 Pandosy St., just up from Giro Beach. Starting November 15, you can find a Knifewear stall at the Calgary Farmers’ Market beside Silk Road Spice Merchants. Starting in January the stall will offer a “sharpen while you shop” service. Knifewear will also open a “pop-up” shop in Edmonton, November 20 to December 31, at a location still to be determined. News of the pop-up can be found at n Top quality Trudeau kitchenware offers great, easy-to-use, beautifully designed “stress-free” gear for gift giving and receiving – a safety can opener, garlic press, rotary cheese grater, the easiest lever-style cork remover in the world, maybe, and a smooth, sharp pizza cutter that really cuts. And lots of good stuff for entertaining. It’s available at the Happy Cooker, Kitchen Boutique, The Compleat Cook and Artisano Galleria.

TRY A TOKAY WITH A STICKY TOFFEE PUDDING FOR DESSERT Try ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen’s Sticky Toffee Pudding with Whip Cream from our 2012 Holiday Collection cookbook with your dessert wines tonight.

Celebrate the Holiday Season with Reader’s Garden Cafe

Download the recipe now

special events and group functions for 20 to 55 people

(403) 263- 0210

Would you like to have bananas for our Christmas dessert honey?

Bananas? No, I want something special. How ‘bout pudding? Please! Go to


Latin market!

Jazz up your holiday meal with Danafria Paneton! Unimarket Latin market, Wholesale & retail 128 50 AVE SE 2405 EDMONTON TRAIL NE 5317 50 AVE., RED DEER 403.255.4479 403.984.3373 403.309.4449 noveMBER decemBER 2012


14 quick ways with Vanilla

While you attend to your holiday baking, adding the essential flavour of vanilla to your cookies and cakes... take a moment, while you have another sip of wine, to consider all the many uses of vanilla...

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Here’s a very special

6. 7. 8.

our european culinary escapes:

The Mediterranean coast of Turkey in the spring

The south of France in the spring

Tuscany, Italy in the fall imagine one of these under the tree!


An emulsifier: add vanilla extract to egg batters – sweet or savoury – waffle or pancake mix, baked goods, or cream sauces to smooth and blend strong flavours. An adjunct flavour for seafood, fowl and meat: use with roasted, sautéed or barbecued meats, poultry, wild game or seafood. Split a vanilla bean and place it in a bottle of olive oil or other quality oil for sautéing meat, poultry or seafood. Add a few drops of vanilla extract to sauces and marinades. A lifter and enhancer: add vanilla to give new “life” to flavourless fruits or other foods that need a flavour boost. Did you know that chocolate tastes “flat,” which is why it usually contains vanilla? A stomach sedative: add vanilla extract to mineral water or apple juice to settle a nervous stomach. To soothe cranky, teething or sick children, add a few drops of vanilla to their milk or juice. A natural calmative: place vanilla beans in a jar and use as aromatherapy to soothe jangled nerves. Vanilla’s fragrance is known to improve one’s confidence and helps to dissolve pent-up anger and frustration. Burn your tongue on pizza or other hot food? Put a few drops of vanilla on your tongue to ease the pain and soothe the burn. Works on other minor body burns – the evaporation of the alcohol in the extract cools the burn. Love chiles but can’t take the heat? Sweet neutralizes heat – add some vanilla to soften the bite but enhance the sweetness and flavour of the chiles. Freshen the fridge by soaking a cotton ball with vanilla extract and leaving it in the fridge. Bugs or spiders living on the underside of your furniture? Add a vanilla bean or two to your furniture polish or dust cloth. Apply to both sides of furniture. Bugs don’t like the smell and will leave.

From web sites and

10. The scent of vanilla fools the brain into thinking it’s not hungry. Take a whiff of vanilla before digging into a delectable meal, and you might eat less of it.

11. Vanilla repels mosquitoes because they don’t like the smell. Combine 2 oz. of vanilla extract with 2 oz. of water and spray it on your skin.

12. Madagascar vanilla has three times as much vanillin concentration and

therefore more vanilla flavour compared to its nearest competition, the Mexican bourbon variety.

13. Vanillin, the compound that gives vanilla bean its flavour, protects red blood

We Are All Things Culinary... THE COOKBOOK CO. COOKS

722-11th Avenue SW Phone 403-265-6066, ext.1 Fax 403-262-3322 see all the delicious details on

62 novEMBER decemBER 2012

cells with sickle cell disease from assuming the sickle shape that obstructs blood vessels.

14. An aphrodisiac: want to attract the opposite sex? Dab vanilla on your skin. As

early as the 1600s, vanilla has been used to “stimulate the sexual propensities.” In 1762 a German study found that a medication based on vanilla extract cured impotence – all 342 smiling subjects claimed they were cured. noveMBER decemBER 2012


last meal

Geoff Last

Keep it simple and seasonal


35 Years

Welcome to my inaugural food column, a collection of relatively simple recipes intended to complement each other but all capable of standing on their own. For roughly a decade I’ve been sharing my passion for food and wine by teaching classes at The Cookbook Co. Cooks, and in many ways this is a natural extension of those classes. I tend to embrace the Italian model of cooking and eating – keep it simple and let high quality ingredients speak for themselves. I’ve also paired the food with wine. I hope you enjoy sharing these recipes with friends and family as much as I have. Cheers! Menu: Parmesan Corn Cakes with Lime/Chile Cream Grilled Spice-Rubbed Beef Tri-Tip Buttermilk Cake with Chocolate Glaze

of great fashion, food, gifts and so much more!

Willow Park Village is Boutique Shopping at its best! From fashion, home accessories and aesthetic services to great restaurants, specialty food, flowers and more, Willow Park Village is a unique experience every time! NOW OPEN: Second To None Meats NEWLY RENOVATED: Chianti Café and Restaurant NEWLY RENOVATED: Caesar’s Restaurant For more information visit Grilled Spice-Rubbed Tri-Tip

macleod trail & wil ow park drive se

Parmesan Corn Cakes with Lime/Chile Cream 1/2 c. unbleached white flour 1/2 c. stone ground cornmeal 1/2 t. baking soda 1/2 t. salt couple grinds of black pepper 1/2 t. crushed dried red chiles 1/4 c. grated parmesan 1 c. buttermilk 2 large eggs 1 c. fresh or frozen corn (thawed if frozen) 2 scallions, green and pale green parts only, chopped grapeseed oil for frying (this a neutral-tasting oil with a high smoke point; it is also among the healthy oils, along with olive and canola)

When fresh corn is available I like to grill the cobs (husks removed), rubbed lightly with olive oil, on the top rack of the barbecue for about 10 minutes, turning them several times just until they take on a little colour. This caramelizes the natural sugars and brings out the sweetness. Stand them on their ends and, with a sharp knife, strip the cobs of the kernels and reserve them. Whisk the first 7 ingredients together in a large bowl. Whisk the eggs and buttermilk together

64 novEMBER decemBER 2012

in a medium bowl, and then whisk the mixture into the dry ingredients. Add the corn and scallions to the batter and mix well. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat and add enough oil to coat the bottom. Drop blobs of the mixture into the pan (about 1/4 c. each) and flatten them slightly with a spoon. They should be about 3 to 4 inches in diameter. Fry the cakes for about 3 minutes a side until golden brown. You’ll need to do this in batches – about 4 at a time. You will likely need to add a little more oil between batches. Transfer them to a plate lined with paper towels and serve them warm with lime/chili cream. Makes about 12 cakes.

Lime/Chile Cream 1 c. sour cream 2 T. lime juice 1 T. hot sauce, medium heat, such as Frank’s, or Sriracha if you want more kick 1/2 t. salt

Whisk ingredients together in a small bowl and serve alongside the corn cakes.

Wine: A slightly off-dry riesling would work well with the sweetness of the corn and the spice component; try the Max Ferd Richter Estate Riesling 2009, a great buy at $23.

Grilled Spice-Rubbed Tri-Tip

Mascarpone filling:

Tri-tip is a cut of beef from the bottom of the sirloin, a small triangular muscle usually 1.5 to 2.5 lbs. per side of beef. It’s a relatively inexpensive cut that was popularized in Santa Maria, California. In recent years it has become available here and it’s one of my favourite cuts to grill. Because the cut doesn’t have much fat, don’t cook it beyond medium rare. Always slice it about 1/4” thick across the grain, which runs from end to end from the pointy tip to the wide end.

8 oz. mascarpone cream cheese (substitute other cream cheese if unavailable)

1 T. smoked paprika 1 t. kosher salt 1/2 t. ground black pepper 1/2 t. dry mustard 1/2 t. ground cumin 2 T. brown sugar (omit the sugar if you are cooking the meat over very hot coals) 1 tri-tip roast, about 2 lbs. 1 small bag of arugula, picked over, large stems discarded (optional)

Mix the spice rub ingredients – the first 6 – in a small bowl. Trim the beef of fat (there’s not much) and rub the entire cut with the mixture to coat. Wrap it in plastic and chill for at least 2 hours and up to a day ahead. Bring the meat to room temperature before grilling, about an hour outside the fridge. Preheat the grill to high. Because the rub has sugar in it, it will burn if cooked over direct heat so I cook it on the top grill of the barbecue. Grill the beef to medium rare, about 10 minutes a side, then remove it from heat and let it rest 20 minutes before serving. Allowing the meat to rest is a crucial step with virtually all roasted/grilled meats. It allows the grain to close up and retain the natural juices. The meat will still be warm even after 20 minutes as it is still cooking internally when it comes off the grill. Slice the tri-tip and serve it on a bed of arugula on a serving platter. Drizzle it with the accumulated juices just before serving. I typically serve this with coconut rice and seasonal vegetables. Serves 4 to 6.

Wine: A California zinfandel is a good match with this dish; try Ridge’s 2009 East Bench Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley - $33. Buttermilk Cake with Chocolate Glaze This is a great, flavourful cake, thanks to the addition of buttermilk, which keeps it moist and lends it a nice tang. The mascarpone cream in the middle kicks it up a notch or two. In the summer, I substitute seasonal berries for the chocolate glaze.

1 c. chilled whipping cream 1/4 c. sugar

Glaze: 1/4 c. whipping cream 4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, not more than 60% cacao, if marked, finely chopped 2 t. light corn syrup

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of a 9” spring-form pan with parchment paper and butter bottom and sides of pan. Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. In a large bowl beat sugar and butter until pale and fluffy. Beat in vanilla then beat in eggs, one at a time. Beat in buttermilk at low speed until well mixed and then add flour mixture in 3 batches, mixing after each addition until just combined. The batter will be very thick. Transfer it to cake pan smoothing out the top and rapping the pan on the counter a couple of times to settle the batter. Bake until golden and tester comes out clean, about 35 to 40 minutes. Cool cake in pan 10 minutes and then run a small, thin knife around the edge of the pan and release the sides. Invert the cake onto a platter and remove parchment paper. Transfer the cake back onto the serving platter until ready to assemble. The cake should cool for at least a half hour before completing – this is a good time to make the glaze. Beat the mascarpone, cream and sugar in a large bowl until mixture holds stiff peaks. Halve the cake horizontally with a long serrated knife. This is the only tricky part of the recipe. Do it carefully checking the outside as you go to try and get the cut as even as possible. Remove the top half of the cake carefully (the removable bottom of a tart pan is handy for this) and spread the cream mixture over the bottom half of the cake and then replace the top half. Glaze the cake. Glaze: Bring the cream to a simmer in a small, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Put the chocolate into a bowl and pour the hot cream over it. Let stand 1 minute. Gently whisk until smooth, then stir in the corn syrup. Cool completely, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. The glaze will thicken. Pour the glaze onto the centre of the cake and spread it to the edges and over the sides with a spatula. Serves 8 - 12. (This cake can be made a day ahead and refrigerated; it is even better the next day.)



Inspire the wine lover in your life with the Total Wine Experience by Opimian Opimian has been Canada’s premier wine club for 40 years. Our Total Wine Experience includes a selection of more than 500 exclusive wines, hand-picked by our experts; access to fun, educational tastings; and the opportunity to travel to the most beautiful wine-producing regions of the world. The finishing touch our wines are not available anywhere else in Canada. Contact us TODAY to learn more about how you could receive a FREE case of wine! • 1.800.361.9421 Please source City Palate when you join.

*Some conditions apply; see coupon for details.

Wine: A sweet sherry works nicely with this cake; you can’t go wrong with Lustau’s East India Solera - $22 for 375ml.

2 c. unbleached white flour 1 t. baking powder 1 t. baking soda 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature (1/2 c.) 3/4 c. sugar 1 t. vanilla extract 2 large eggs 1 c. buttermilk (shake well before measuring)

casually elegant. uniquely vintage. distinctly canadian. Sunday Prime Rib Three-Course Dinner $34.95 Prix Fixe Menu Tuesday – Thursday Evenings $39.95 1900 Heritage Drive SW Calgary • Reservations 403.268.8607 • noveMBER decemBER 2012


back burner

Allan Shewchuk

Shewchuk on simmer


As evidence of my advancing age becomes increasingly unavoidable, I’ve tried to become the paradigm of a healthy eater. It’s taken about a decade of making small changes, all of them painful, but I’m finally getting there.

white Chocolate Cranberry Loaf now available until the end of December!


winner 129, 4820 northland Drive nw • Tel: 403.282.MiLL (6455)

Holiday Dinnertime Rescue! Pick uP your:

Turkey Trimmings Sweet Treats The Perfect Gift

Fresh Market Food Worth Craving! 7207 Fairmount Drive SE Calgary Ph: 403-252-2083 | Mon-Thu: 7am-9pm | Fri: 7am-10pm | Sat: 8am-10pm 66 novEMBER decemBER 2012

I never drink soda pop. I never eat junk food (except for Hawkins Cheezies on long road trips, and everyone agrees that doesn’t count). I only eat dessert where a skilled pastry chef can dazzle me, maybe a half dozen times a year. At home, for dinner, I grill a protein such as salmon or halibut and my wife makes a healthy salad. We eat quinoa and organic vegetables and avoid butter. I only use refined sugar when I drink espresso in Italy. I’m proud of myself, as I weighed 35 pounds less on my fiftieth birthday than I did on my fortieth. Personally, I’m shocked at how disciplined I’ve become. But all that discipline swiftly goes out the window when you stand me in the lineup for a buffet. Something about a huge plate and a vista of food turns me from a Dr. Jekyll of moderation to a Mr. Hyde of gluttony and I can’t explain why. Luckily, I rarely get trapped into a buffet or I would be so morbidly obese that I could have my own reality show (think Honey Shew Shew). I would never choose to dine that way, but sometimes it can’t be avoided – as was the case last summer, when the small town where my wife grew up celebrated its 100th anniversary. There was much excitement about this event and nothing was working the locals up into a frenzy more than the big wind-up buffet dinner. “Ya gotta come on Saturday!” the folks in town yelled at me. “Down at the curling rink we’re havin’ one helluva smorg!” Smorg, of course, is prairie shorthand for what the Scandinavians call a smorgasbord, which means “open-faced sandwich” (smorgas) and “table” (bord). Smorgasbords are beautiful palettes of wild game and seafood sandwiches and other goodies. Unfortunately, North American smorgs are anything but, and should be called fodring af husdyr, which is Danish for “the feeding of livestock.” Buffets seem to be an excuse to put every conceivable cheap food out at the start of the line to see what people will actually go for before they get to the good stuff at the end. When it comes to me, the answer is, apparently, everything. So there I am at the curling rink and I’m not even hungry. We get into the lineup for the buffet to see the locals coming back from the end with groaning plates, topped with what appears to be perfectly cooked baron of beef. If I were at home, I would be ultra-content with just a salad and some of that superb red meat. But no, as soon as I get to the first table, my “smorg-brain” kicks in and I start filling my plate to the hilt. I don’t choose the things I actually want, but load up on heaps of bread and butter pickles, ambrosia salad with mini-marshmallows, canned cobs of baby corn, herring rollmops, and marbled cheddar cheese cubes. This is stuff that usually sits in the back of people’s fridges until it grows moldy. Even before I get to anything hot, my plate is so heavy that I need to hold it with two hands. I really go mental when I see the mountain of Swedish meatballs and I pile about fifty on my plate, despite knowing full well that just up ahead is tender, pink roast beef. Shockingly, I then take all four different kinds of potatoes: roasted, mashed, scalloped and fried, even though three tables back I added a layer of potato salad to my heaping-helping plate. When I finally get to the beef I can only take a small slice, mostly out of embarrassment, and I head back to the table and chow down on the whole pile. There was a homecoming dance to follow the buffet, but I ate so much that I sat in the curling rink alone pretending to read all the advertising signs until I could stand up and stagger to my room and go into a buffet coma. The next day, as we drove home, I felt so terrible that I had to sip mineral water. I let go a silent burp. A few seconds later my wife gasped “Eww. There must be a hog farm around here. Something smells like herring and meatballs!” I turned on the air conditioning and let the wave of cold breeze extinguish the hot flush of smorg-shame that swept over me. We drove on in silence. Allan Shewchuk is a lawyer by day, and an Italian ”chef,” wine taster and food writer by night. Sometimes he tastes wine before nightfall.

FINE FOOD, BEER & SPIRITS » 17th at 5th »

OPENING SOON yellow door BISTro

Downtown | 119 12th Avenue SW 403.206.9585

City Palate November December 2012  
City Palate November December 2012  

The Flavour of Calgary's Food Scene - The Entertaining Issue