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city palate T H E


O F C A L G A R Y ’ S S I N C E 1 9 9 3



the entertaining issue CITYPALATE.CA









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SLOW POKE BUYS LUNCH! A romp through Mother Nature’s backyard, whether on a bike, skis or snowshoes, deserves a refreshing reward. With so many restaurants, eateries and coffee shops, not to mention the many artisan shops, there’s so much to experience before or after a visit to the woods. Come take a deep breath of the freshest air on the planet and slide into an experience only Bragg Creek can deliver.

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18 n

An Entertaining Menu

Keith Luce of Tavernetta shares a great Italian menu with us

20 n

Gift These!

Great gifts for foodies Karen Anderson

22 n

And These!

Great gifts for the boozers in your life Tom Firth

24 n

The Ubiquity of Babka

Laura Di Lembo

28 n

7 Unique, Must-Try Eateries

Wanda Baker

30 n

Feeding the Community

A spunky start-up tests the ‘waste not, want not’ philosophy Catherine Van Brunschot

32 n

Food Fraud

Is your food actually what it’s supposed to be? Erin Lawrence


7 n word of mouth

Notable culinary happenings around town

9 n eat this

What to eat in November and December Ellen Kelly

10 n one ingredient

Caramel Julie Van Rosendaal

Buon Natale. (bwon-nah-TAL-ay)

This is how we say ‘Merry Christmas’ in Italy, but it really means we wish you and yours all the best of the Holiday Season.

Have a cookie.

14 n feeding people

Flippin’ for Filipino Food Kate Zimmerman

16 n the sunday project

Spatchcock Chicken/Turkey with Ellen Kelly

34 n stockpot

Stirrings around Calgary

41 n 8 quick ways with...

Maple syrup Chris Halpin

42 n back burner... shewchuk on simmer

Fake News Allan Shewchuk

COVER ARTIST: Guy Parsons is an Illustrator, Designer and Cartoonist. He’s a professional member of the Graphic Designers of Canada and the National Cartoonists Society. He also makes the world's best chicken wings (pretty sure). Find him at guyparsons.com.


Grocery. Bakery. Deli. Café. EDMONTON Little Italy | Southside | West End CALGARY Willow Park




Celebrate your holiday event in style! Offering a locally-inspired menu, featuring items that are meticulously handcrafted.


city palate publisher/editor Kathy Richardier (kathy@citypalate.ca) magazine design Carol Slezak, Yellow Brick Studios (carol@citypalate.ca) contributing editor Kate Zimmerman contributors Karen Anderson Wanda Baker Laura Di Lembo Tom Firth Chris Halpin Ellen Kelly Erin Lawrence Allan Shewchuk Catherine Van Brunschot Julie Van Rosendaal Kate Zimmerman

2008 Airport Road NE

Warm Hospitality, Brazilian Style

contributing photographers Karen Anderson Regan Johnson Kathy Richardier for advertising enquiries, please contact advertising@citypalate.ca account manager Doug Proctor (doug@citypalate.ca) account executives Liz Tompkins (liz@citypalate.ca) Janet Henderson (janet@citypalate.ca) Ellen Kelly (ellen@citypalate.ca) website management Jane Pratico (jane@citypalate.ca)

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City Palate is published 6 times per year: January-February, March-April, May-June, July-August, September-October and November-December by City Palate Publishing Inc., Suite 419, 919 Centre St. NW, Calgary, AB T2E 2P9 Subscriptions are available for $48 per year within Canada and $68 per year outside Canada.


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word of mouth


culinary guides to alberta Alberta Culinary Tourism Alliance (ACTA) has launched a guide called Sippin’ Alberta, which profiles the growing number of craft breweries, distilleries and eateries across the province. Also available is Heritage Trails, the latest in the series of Fork on the Road series of culinary trail maps that feature memorable food and beverage experiences, including places like our Deane House. And, really interestingly, Raw Trails North, a trail from Edmonton to Lac La Biche inspired by the Cook it Raw Alberta initiative that explores aboriginal and early settler culinary experiences. To download e-copies of these guides, visit albertaculinary.com/culinarytrails.

vancouver aquarium’s ocean wise chowder chowdown Don’t miss the most delicious evening of chowing down on top Calgary chefs’ best recipes for sustainable chowders, and cast your vote on which one is best, November 15, 7 p.m., Hotel Arts, 119 - 12 Ave. SW. And craft beer, too. Tickets $60. Visit vanaqua.org/chowder for details and tickets. This is always amazingly tasty – don’t miss it.

goodies for holiday entertaining Spinelli’s Italian Centre Shop offers a great cafe to sit and enjoy a latte and a fresh pastry before, after or during your shopping. Store manager, Gino, has worked there for almost 20 years and is always available to help customers, and he knows all the products inside and out. The staff can make recommendations to elevate your holiday party board and help you navigate the more than 180 meats, cheeses, and marinated products in the deli. Find specialty grocery products from local producers and from around the globe to complete the perfect holiday party board. And, the shop offers made-to-order party trays featuring popular meats, cheeses, pastry, fruit, etc. And, if you need the perfect gift for the foodie or chef in your life, look no further than gift baskets. Visit italiancentre.ca for more details on baskets and trays.

a delicious orchard wine We recently discovered an orchard wine that we’re pretty much addicted to! Crab Apple wine from Elephant Island on the Naramata Bench in the Okanagan Valley. The reason is that it’s made from crabapples that, as we all know, have some tang to them, so the wine isn’t sweet but a little tangy. AND, best of all, it’s just 10% alcohol, which is good if you’re drinking a lot of it! Find it at Olympia Liquor. Really, crabapples make great everything, including wine.

learn about the making of japanese knives Springhammer, the award-winning Kevin Kossowan-directed documentary produced by Knifewear CEO Kevin Kent, about Japanese Blacksmiths and the culinary tools they create is streaming for free on knifewear.com. In 2013, Kent, Kossowan and Knifewear’s cultural ambassador, Naoto Fujimoto, travelled across Japan to film their blacksmith partners. Now you can see how the popular Japanese knives are made. Visit knifewear.com/springhammer to have a look.

a humble tool much improved Daneson Toothpicks aren’t what we’d call a dining necessity, but we think they would be great fun at a celebratory dinner. These flavoured toothpicks are thicker and sturdier than ordinary ones, thus discouraging too much in-depth excavation at the table, which we think is a good thing. The flavours are subtle but true, which we also think a good thing, with smell playing as much a part as taste – a perfect way to go that extra mile this holiday season. The elegant packaging makes them an interesting hostess gift or a guaranteed hit with the hard-to-buy-for. There’s something commendable in finding this kind of attention to detail in the manufacture of such a humble tool... the toothpick. Find them around town, including the Compleat Cook, Britannia Kitchen & Home and Savour Fine Foods & Kitchenware.

read these: Ned Bell is a familiar name because he founded Chefs for Oceans and is the Vancouver Aquarium’s inaugural Ocean Wise executive chef. He has just launched LURE, Sustainable Seafood Recipes from the West Coast that he did with Valerie Howes (Figure 1 Publishing, $38.95, hard cover). Bell’s recipes are more than just about sustainability – they are always imaginative and luring, such as Roasted Scallops with Grapefruit, Brown Butter and Thyme, Dungeness Crab and White Cheddar Mac ‘n’ Cheese... and... (Sea)Weed Brownies. And, for lots of good information, he ends the book with Species Profiles about all the seafood we love to eat. Ned will be at Knifewear in Inglewood on November 24, 1-3 p.m., talking about and signing his book. Don’t miss it at 1316 - 9th Ave. SE. Another acclaimed chef and best-selling cookbook author, Lynn Crawford, has launched a super good book called Farm to Chef, Cooking Through the Seasons (Penguin Canada, $40, hard cover), starting with fall and working through the year to summer. There’s fun stuff in here, too, like the first recipe that has to do with apples – Hot Buttered Bourbon Cider that’s garnished with apple slices. Yay, Lynn, thanks for the bourbon! And as we move through the year, Parsnip Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting and Walnut and Five-Spice Crusted Duck Breast with Plum Chutney. Here’s a good one from Cynthia Lair, Feeding the Whole Family, Cooking with Whole Foods: More than 200 Recipes for Babies, Young Children and their Parents (Sasquatch Books, $29.95, paper cover). It thoroughly covers off why whole foods are good for everyone in the family, how to get the kids involved in the kitchen, and each recipe has a note at the end for feeding part of the recipe to babies. For example, for Dr. Bruce’s Awesome Grilled Salmon, she says to mix some bites of the salmon with one of baby’s regular vegetables, for babies 10 months and older. Heal and Ignite, 55 Raw, Plant-Based, Whole-Food Recipes to Heal Your Body and Ignite Your Spirit, by Danielle Arsenault. Good stuff in here, like Tangy Ginger Kelp Noodle Soup and Kale Curry Crackers, even desserts like Salted Caramel Coffee Cake and Real Fruit Roll-Ups. Get it from the Publisher, Friesen Press in Victoria, B.C. – paper cover, $22.99, hard cover, $35.99. friesenpress.com/bookstore For those who are big whisky fans, Canadian Whisky, The New Portable Expert, by Davin de Kergommeaux (Appetite by Random House, $25, paper cover) covers the subject very nicely, and it’s his updated and revised edition of his award-winning first book on the subject. Perfect resource for beginners, enthusiasts and aficionados.




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eat this

Ellen Kelly


Whether you’re preparing dinner for two or a feast for a crowd, a good cook knows what’s really important… it’s the people in the chairs. Cooking is performance art and begs an audience! November and December are perfect months for entertaining and celebrating, giving us plenty of opportunities to do more than just get dinner on the table. Lobster is certainly a showstopper and nothing, to my mind, is more comforting than a homemade apple dessert. There’s no reason you can’t do both this season!

Illustrations by Eden Thompson

LOBSTER Land-locked as we are, lobster has always been considered celebratory fare. Add champagne and beef filet and we have a party! Broiling lobster tails is a good introduction to this somewhat daunting creature and a guaranteed hit with minimal effort. Prepare a compound butter by combining smoked paprika, garlic powder, freshly ground white pepper and sea salt with room temperature butter. Scrape the seasoned butter onto a piece of cling film, fashion it into a log, roll it up and twist the ends. Refrigerate or freeze. This can be done well in advance. If you’re using frozen tails, make sure they’re thoroughly thawed to avoid the meat sticking to the shell. Preheat the broiler on high. With kitchen shears (you really do need a pair!) at the ready, cut the top of the shell down the middle to the tip of the tail, careful not to cut the meat. Gently pull the shell back from the meat on both sides revealing the entire tail. Devein as you would shrimp and remove any grit. Pat the meat dry with paper towel and place 2-3 large coins of compound butter down the length of the tail. Place the tails on a foil-covered baking sheet and put under the broiler on an upper rack, but not directly under the broiler. Keep a close eye on them and check after 8-10 minutes. This can take up to 15 minutes depending on the size, but don’t overcook them, as no one likes rubbery lobster. Like shrimp, the flesh looks grayish and translucent when uncooked and opaque and white when cooked. If you’re so inclined, cook extras and have leftover meat for salads or sandwiches. A personal favourite is lobster meat tossed with mayonnaise, celery, green onion, chopped cornichon and capers piled high on toasted brioche bread and garnished with butter lettuce.

BUY: Although lobsters have been known to reach weights in excess of 40 lbs. and are thereby considered the heaviest crustaceans in the world, lobsters weighing in at around 1.5 lbs. are more common. Always deal with a trusted fishmonger. TIPS: If you’re working with a whole lobster, the coral (roe) and the creamy green tomalley (liver) are considered delicacies by some and shouldn’t be discarded. At the very least, they can be tasty ingredients in lobster or even shrimp bisque. Don’t throw out the shells either, for the same reason. Sautéed in butter, deglazed with a splash of brandy and then added to a fish stock, they add a depth of flavour that can’t be achieved any other way. DID YOU KNOW? Commonly known as the Canadian, American or Maine lobster, this foraging decapod (ten legs) lives in rocky reefs exclusive to the temperate latitudes from North Carolina to Labrador. Government fishery boards are to be credited for ensuring sustainability. The species currently enjoys a conservation status of LC, Least Concern, as a result. Today, in Canada and the USA, lobster fishing is one of the most valuable sectors of the entire fishing industry.

APPLES Apples might seem to be a slightly plebeian ingredient for an entertaining menu, but there are few things more reassuring, and comfort is as important as dazzle when cooking. A simple yet elegant dessert (borrowed from the inimitable Elizabeth Baird’s Apples, Peaches and Plums) is maple syrup baked apples topped with a nut meringue. Start by coring 6 medium-sized apples, leaving about 1/2 inch at the bottom to hold filling. Combine 1/3 c. chopped cranberries and 1/3 c. chopped toasted walnuts with 1 t. grated orange or lemon zest and fill the apples. Place the apples in a shallow baking dish big enough that they don’t touch each other. Warm 1 c. maple syrup with 3 T. butter, 2-3 T. brandy and 1/2 t. lemon or orange zest just long enough to melt the butter. Pour this over and around the apples. Top the apples with a little freshly grated nutmeg and/or cinnamon. Bake the apples at 375°F. for 30-45 minutes, or until tender, basting frequently with the sauce. About 5 minutes before the apples are done, make a meringue with 2 egg whites, pinch of salt, pinch of cream of tartar, 1/2 c. packed light brown sugar, 1/2 t. vanilla and 1/2 c. chopped toasted walnuts. Beat whites at low speed until frothy and sprinkle in the cream of tartar and salt. Increase speed and beat whites until soft peaks are achieved, then gradually add the sugar. Continue beating until you have stiff peaks, then stir in vanilla and nuts. Pipe (fancy) or spoon (rustic) the meringue over the tops of the apples, increase the heat to 425°F. and bake for about 5 minutes or until the meringue is golden.

BUY: Don’t shy away from apples that are unconventional looking. The best apples don’t always look like picture-perfect wax fruit. Some varieties are lopsided or elongated and have skins that appear scarred and russet. That being said, for baked apples you will probably want a nice round evenly sized apple like Gala or McIntosh. TIPS: Before baking apples, make a shallow cut in the skin of each apple about 2/3 of the way up and all the way around to allow them to expand and not burst. DID YOU KNOW? We are conditioned for some reason to suppose that bigger is always better. As Roger Yepsen notes in his wonderful little book Apples, “The bigger the apple, the quicker it matures and the more likely firmness and texture are on the way out.”

Ellen Kelly is a chef and regular contributor to City Palate.



one ingredient

This new year, let us help turn your dream holiday into reality. We take care of every detail so you can relax and immerse yourself in the sights, sounds and sensations of some of the World’s most iconic locations.

Julie Van Rosendaal


The kitchen can be a scary place, especially when you’re attempting to make things like caramel from scratch. Molten sugar is extremely hot and relentlessly sticky. It must be swirled and not stirred, and can darken unevenly and burn quickly, turning a shade beyond salvageable in a few seconds. But the thing to remember about making caramel yourself is that the caramelization part, the cooking of sugar until it melts and transforms to a deep amber, is an inexpensive experiment. It’s just sugar. And even if you do cook it for too little or too long and wind up with caramel that’s too soft or too crunchy, all stages that come before burnt are delicious. The way to push past your fear of DIY caramel is by doing it – after a few batches, it will be significantly less terrifying, and the end result is its own reward. The process of making caramel is ridiculously simple, before you get into the nitty gritty of tips and rules: simply heat sugar until it melts and turns the colour of beer (ranging, like beer, from a pilsner to an amber ale; if it’s the shade of a stout, it’s gone too far). The longer you cook it, the snappier it will be. What cookbooks refer to as “the dry method” requires you to start with dry granulated sugar in your pan, set over heat, which can be scarier; it won’t melt as evenly, and can go from zero to mahogany with little opportunity for you to swirl the pan. Adding a small amount of water or corn syrup to the sugar right off the bat helps get things started, allowing the sugar to dissolve and heat more evenly. It will be a tad more prone to crystallization (I’ve never had a problem) and will add a few minutes to the process, but will also take some of the pressure off. The standard rule of caramel making is that you can’t dip a spoon or spatula in to stir it, which may cool the candy down in spots and trigger it to crystallize. Some cooks stand by the pot, mopping the sides with a pastry brush dipped in water, washing down grains of crystallized sugar, slowing the process down to make it more manageable. In my experience, this isn’t necessary, but won’t hurt if it makes you feel better – just remember that any water you add to the mixture via your pastry brush will need to be cooked off. A drop of lemon juice will encourage the caramel to stay in its liquid state. Swirling the pan is enough to keep the sugar combined and caramelizing even, and you won’t find yourself trailing hot caramel across the counter from your spoon.

Connecting people, places, moments

If you plan to add cream to your caramel, for chewy candies or sauce, be prepared for it to splatter – if it’s your first time (and even if it’s not), it’s a good idea to have oven mitts and a bowl of cold water at the ready. Ice water does double duty; dribbling a bit of hot syrup into it will cool it down quickly and allow you to test its pliability without the need for a candy thermometer. Also, you can quickly plunge your hand in if any syrup should wind up on your skin. Once you’ve mastered caramel, everything else in the kitchen will be slightly less scary. In terms of deliciousness, of all the things that are better homemade than store-bought, caramel in all its forms tops the list.

Gingerbread Caramel Corn Popcorn is a classic vehicle for crunchy caramel, and it makes a tasty gift, too – to holiday it up a bit, you can flavour the caramel with warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. 8 c. air-popped popcorn 1 c. packed brown sugar 1/2 c. corn syrup or Rogers Golden syrup 1/4 c. butter 1 T. molasses 1/4 t. salt 1 t. baking soda 1 t. vanilla 1 t. cinnamon 1/4 t. freshly grated nutmeg PieJunkie.ca 8 Spruce Centre SW 403.452.3960 | 1081 - 2nd Avenue NW 403.287.8544



1/4 t. powdered ginger

Preheat the oven to 250°F and put the popcorn in a big bowl. In a medium saucepan, combine

the brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, molasses and salt and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat and boil without stirring, swirling the pan occasionally, for 4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the baking soda and vanilla – it will foam up at first. Stir in the cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger, and quickly pour the caramel over the popcorn; stir with a heatproof spatula or tongs to coat well. Spread out onto a large rimmed baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, stirring once or twice. Cool and break apart. Makes 8 cups.

Sponge Toffee

Sour Cream Caramels

This was my favourite treat (okay, one of many) when I was a kid – for something similar to a Crunchie bar (but far better), dip cooled chunks of sponge toffee into melted chocolate (or drizzle it overtop) and set them on parchment paper until set.

Sour cream adds a subtle tang to these creamy, chewy caramels, balancing their richness. The only trick is knowing when to pull the pot off the stove, and it’s not a trick at all if you have a thermometer. If not, wait until the mixture looks more uniform and the bubbles slow down – about 15 minutes – and then drop a bit of caramel into a glass of really cold water. Feel it – if it’s the texture you want your caramels to be, they’re ready. A longer simmer will give you a firmer chew.

3/4 c. sugar 1/4 c. corn syrup 1 T. baking soda melted chocolate, for dipping

Line a 9x13-inch pan with parchment. Combine the sugar and syrup in a heavy medium saucepan set over medium-low heat. (Make sure there’s lots of room in the pan for the mixture to foam up when you stir in the baking soda.) Stir until the sugar begins to melt. Continue to cook, swirling the pan occasionally, but not stirring, until the mixture turns a deep caramel colour. Watch it carefully – sugar burns fast! Remove from heat and quickly stir in the baking soda. It will foam up like a science experiment. Quickly pour it into the pan and set aside for a couple of hours, or until set. Break into chunks. Melt chocolate over low heat (or in a microwave oven) and dip in the toffee chunks to partially (or fully) coat them. Place on a piece of parchment or a baking rack set over a cookie sheet to set. Serves about 8.

1 c. sugar 1/2 c. packed brown sugar 1/2 c. butter 1 c. full-fat sour cream 1/2 c. corn syrup or Roger’s Golden Syrup 1 t. vanilla 1/2 t. coarse sea salt

In a small pot or large saucepan, combine all ingredients except the vanilla and salt. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture comes to a boil. Continue cooking without stirring until a candy thermometer reaches 244-250°F, or a small amount of the caramel dribbled into ice water can be squished into a soft ball. Stir in the vanilla and salt and pour into a parchment-lined 8x8-inch pan. Chill until set, and cut into squares.  Makes 3-4 dozen pieces.

continued on page 12

e n R o u t e m ag a z i n e

Ca n a da ' s B e s t N e w

recipe photos by Julie Van Rosendaal

R e s ta u r a n t s L i s t




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one ingredient

CARAMEL continued from page 11

Salted Caramel Chocolate Cupcakes A solid caramel sauce is a good thing to have in your repertoire; this version has a consistency perfect for drizzling over cakes or ice cream. The caramel frosting doesn’t. Cupcakes: 1-3/4 c. all-purpose flour 1 c. packed brown sugar 1/2 c. cocoa

Divide the batter among the cups and bake for 25 minutes, or until the tops are springy to the touch. Remove and tip the cupcakes in their tins to allow the steam to escape.

1 t. baking powder 1 t. baking soda 1/2 t. salt 1 c. milk 1/2 c. canola oil 2 large eggs 2 t. vanilla 1 c. strong coffee (instant works perfectly)

Salted Caramel Sauce: 1 c. sugar 1/4 c. water 1 t. lemon juice 1/3 c. whipping cream 1/4 t. sea salt

Caramel Frosting: 1/2 c. butter, at room temperature

Salted Caramel Ice Cream Salted caramel has become the “it” ice cream flavour in recent years, but once you feel okay with making your own caramel, it’s surprisingly easy to make at home.

3 c. icing sugar, plus extra if needed 1/4 c. salted caramel sauce 1 t. vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350°F and line muffin tins with paper liners. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, brown sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt, breaking up any lumps of brown sugar and cocoa. Add the milk, oil, eggs and vanilla and whisk to combine. Add the coffee and stir until well-blended and smooth.

To make the caramel, stir together the sugar, water and lemon juice in a small saucepan set over medium-high heat. When it comes to a boil, stop stirring and swirl the pan often, cooking until it starts to turn golden. When it starts to change colour, don’t leave the pan – swirl it often until it turns deep golden. Remove from heat and carefully whisk in the cream – it will foam up. Whisk in the salt and let cool to room temperature. To make the frosting, beat the butter with 1 c. of the icing sugar until smooth. Add the caramel sauce and remaining icing sugar and beat until you have a smooth, spreadable consistency, adding extra sugar or a few drops of cold water, if needed, to achieve the right consistency. Spread or spoon into a piping bag with a large star tip and pipe over the cooled cupcakes. Drizzle with more salted caramel sauce. Makes about 18 cupcakes (or more minis).




1 c. sugar, divided 2 T. water 1/4 t. lemon juice 2 c. whipping cream, divided 1 t. vanilla 1/2 t. flaky Maldon salt 1 c. half and half or 2% milk 2 eggs

Put 3/4 c. of the sugar into a heavy-bottomed medium skillet, add 2 T. water and the lemon juice, and set over medium-high heat. Cook, swirling occasionally and watching it carefully (do not stir), until the mixture turns deep amber. Immediately remove from heat and quickly but carefully stir in 1 c. of the whipping cream (it will spatter), along with the vanilla and salt. Pour into a bowl and set aside to cool. In a large saucepan, warm the remaining 1 c. cream and 1 c. half and half or milk until the mixture is steaming. In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk the eggs with a fork. Slowly whisk in some of the hot cream, then whisk the egg-cream mixture back into the warm cream in the pot, whisking constantly. Bring to a simmer and cook until the custard thickens. Pour through a sieve into a bowl (this takes a minute and will get rid of any bits of cooked egg) and whisk in the caramel. Cool, then cover and refrigerate until well chilled. Freeze the completely cooled custard mixture in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Makes about 4 cups.


This Holiday Season!

taylorfladgate.com To find a retailer visit: liquorconnect.com/783727 Julie Van Rosendaal is a cookbook author and blogs at dinnerwithjulie.com



feeding people

Kate Zimmerman


No less an expert than Anthony Bourdain calls this cuisine America’s next big thing. When was the last time you texted a friend, “Hey! Let’s hit that fantastic Filipino joint tonight”? If you’re not Filipino, you’ve probably never done so. But this cuisine’s days of obscurity are numbered. North American food freaks, including TV personality Anthony Bourdain and L.A. Times food critic Jonathan Gold, now champion Filipino cooking, and trendy spots like Montreal’s Junior and Washington’s Bad Saint are showing up on best restaurant lists. It’s time to pay attention. According to the Calgary Herald, between 2006 and 2011, Filipinos were the largest single group of immigrants moving to the city, making up more than 12,000 of 68,000-plus arrivals. The 2011 census said more than 47,000 Filipinos lived here then, and a National Household Survey suggested that Filipinos are Calgary’s third largest visible minority group. Obviously, these “newcomers” are both opening the Filipino restaurants here, and supporting them – because the rest of us have remained weirdly oblivious. Admittedly, for Westerners, there are obstacles to Filipino food – it’s unapologetically nose-to-tail, with vegetarian options limited. But delights await: this country of 7,100 islands has a culinary history that amalgamates Spanish, Chinese and American flavours into tasty, rib-sticking dishes spiked with sugarcane vinegar, fermented shrimp paste, tart tamarind, pungent fish sauce and the citrus fruit, calamansi. The influence of the American military means Spam and hot dogs occasionally appear in dishes like spaghetti, which may or may not be a plus for you but hit the nostalgia button for Filipinos. There are 15-plus Filipino restaurants in Calgary, and many stores selling Filipino groceries. You’ll find excellent breads (often slightly sweet), buns and pastries at places like Loriz Bakery and Convenience Store, Pacific Hut Restaurant and Bakeshop, Angel’s Bakeshop & Restaurant (formerly Melly’s) and Lola’s Filipino Kitchen. Filipino restaurants offer wonderful, mildly spiced, rice-based meals, often served family-style. You’ll find an interplay of sour, salty and sweet flavours in pork, fish, seafood, chicken and noodle dishes.

Here’s a top 10 list of Filipino items to try, and a few spots at which to try them.


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1. CRISPY PATA My favourite Filipino dish is a pig’s foot that’s simmered in water, salt and spices like star anise and bay leaves, dried, and then deep-fried so its skin turns into magical cracklings. Crispy pata is served whole, with a dipping sauce of vinegar, chili, onion and sometimes soy sauce. Share it with a friend at 7 Seas Seafood. 2. DAING NA BANGUS Mild-flavoured whole milkfish is marinated in vinegar, salt, pepper and garlic for 15 minutes or more, then fried. Often eaten for breakfast with fried rice, this flaky fish dish is sometimes served with atsara, pickled green papaya. Calgary’s Chopstix makes a good version. 3. PANCIT Apparently, it was the Chinese who introduced noodles to the Filipino diet. Pancit features dried vermicelli rice noodles, softened in water and stir-fried with onion, garlic, diced chicken, pork or shrimp, cabbage, carrot, and soy sauce for a mild and delicious kid-friendly dish. Pancit Palabok is a more elaborate version, containing pork, shrimp, fish sauce, crushed chicharron (deep-fried pork belly) and hardboiled eggs. Try it at 7 Seas Seafood.

4. LONGANISA These delicious, slightly sweet little pork sausages make a Filipino breakfast a thing of beauty. Gobble them up with fried eggs and garlic rice in a dish called longsilog at Pacific Hut. 5. SISIG If the terms “pig ear,” “pork mask” or “pork face” horrify you, steer clear of sizzling sisig. Braver types, like Bourdain, adore these parts unknown, a combination of chopped braised pork bits that are grilled until slightly charred, then sautéed with ginger, garlic, chilies, onions, Filipino soy sauce, calamansi juice and coconut vinegar. Sisig is served on a sizzling hot platter, usually with a raw egg cracked on top, which you stir in to cook it. Eat this over rice. 6. LECHON The national dish of the Philippines, and usually served at feasts, lechon (another Bourdain favourite) is a whole pig roasted over charcoal. Calgary has a treasure in Markjoel’s BBQ, located in a corner of the Hong Kong Supermarket on 17th Avenue S.E. There, in a private back room, the owner and his team roast medium-sized whole pigs vertically on a rotisserie, the pigs’ stomachs containing limes, lemongrass and spices. Pre-order a whole pig (if you dare) or take home crackling-topped chunks from the counter in the store. Lechon’s usual accompaniment is something called “all-purpose sauce,” ground cooked pig’s liver simmered with vinegar, palm sugar, garlic and breadcrumbs. 7. BOODLE FIGHT The Philippines Military Academy supposedly came up with this concept: line a table with banana leaves, spread a mound of rice over it, heap the rice with grilled meats, fish, vegetables, and lumpia, and have everybody dig in with their hands. This communal experience was meant to encourage fraternity and equality, so no fighting! You can find the Boodle Fight (or Boodle Feast, or “kamayan-style” dinner) at Adobo Experience, which has come up with an irresistible version for two. Annato-yellow rice sits below a sort of mini bamboo swing set on which hang chicken and shrimp skewers, smoky grilled Japanese eggplant, and a whole fried fish. Fabulous finger food.

8. LUMPIA These golden treats are much like spring rolls or egg rolls, about as thick as a Cuban cigar, with shatteringly crisp flour-and-egg wrappers. Ground pork, chicken, beef or shrimp may be used to fill lumpia, along with minced onion, minced carrots, green onion, thinly sliced green cabbage, garlic powder and soy sauce, and a sweet chili dipping sauce is usually served alongside. Find ’em all over. 9. TAHO Looking for a unique dessert that contains neither dairy nor gluten and is probably good for you? Try taho, a custardy silken tofu served warm with arnibal, a darkly seductive muscovado sugar syrup, and sago, tapioca pearls. Adobo Experience offers a great one.

All Artwork © CoCoCo ChoColAtiers. Not to be reproduCed or Altered without writteN permissioN. CoCoCo ChoCo latie rs 2320 2nd Ave SE Calgary, AB T2E 6J9 Telephone (403) 265-5777 Fax (403) 265-7738 Due Date: oct 3, 2017 Colour: CMYK Publication: City Palate Marketing Manager: K Mehr aPProVeD BY: K Mehr

Client: Cococo Chocolatiers Size: 4.625” w x 7.75” h Rep:

Description: Print ad - 1/3 vertical Insertion date: Nov/Dec 2017 Designer: lynne rennie

continued on page 39 CITYPALATE.ca NOVEMBER DECEMBER 2017


the sunday project

with Ellen Kelly


Spatchcock is an old-fashioned term, both noun and verb, that has recently come back into vogue. It basically means to butterfly, but refers only to fowl. A spatchcock chicken not only saves time – it cooks in about half the time of a whole 4 lb. bird – but if you’re pulling one out of the freezer, you’re almost done! Once mastered – and it’s so much easier than it looks – a spatchcock chicken will garner oohs and aahs from friends and family. It’s equally perfect for a quick weekday meal or gussied up for company, marinated or not. Speaking of which, the marinade ingredients are limited only by your imagination. Furthermore, in the spirit of ease and convenience, there are lots of delicious bottled dressings and marinades out there. Now you have no excuse!

Spatchcock Chicken/Turkey Place a four pound chicken breast-side down on a cutting board and with a good, sharp pair of kitchen shears, carefully – but with determination – cut along one side of the backbone, then repeat down the other side. Save the backbone for stock. Snip the cartilage at the top of the breast to facilitate flattening. Spread out the bird, breast side up, and gently, but firmly, press down to flatten. Don’t be alarmed if you hear a crack. Assemble the ingredients for the marinade: Lemons Garlic Fresh herbs (rosemary, thyme, parsley, etc.) Olive oil Splash of wine and/or white balsamic vinegar Salt, pepper Chile flakes (optional)

Slice the lemons, crush the garlic and coarsely chop or tear the herbs; squeeze the ingredients to release the juices and combine before adding the bird. Marinate the chicken for about 3-4 hours or even overnight in the refrigerator, turning occasionally to distribute the marinade. When ready to roast, preheat the oven to 425°F. Place the marinade solids under the bird on a foil or parchment-lined baking sheet. Liberally salt and pepper the chicken and pop in the oven for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, slice 4-5 shallots into rounds, toss in olive oil and, after the 20 minutes is up, scatter them around the bird. Continue to roast for an additional 25-30 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer reads 160°F when inserted into the thickest part of the breast. Be careful it doesn’t touch bone or the baking sheet. When finished, let the bird rest, loosely tented with foil, for 10-15 minutes, then cut into portions – legs, thighs, wings and halved breasts. Serve topped with the shallots and cooked lemon rounds. OPTIONAL TRICKS: Twist the tips of the wings behind the breast to avoid burning. Before putting the bird in the oven, carefully loosen the skin on the breast and insert a slice of lemon or a piece or two of parsley from the marinade on top of the breast, on each side. Marinated birds can be frozen in the marinade. FOR A 12 LB. TURKEY: preheat the oven to 425°F and roast for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer reads 165°F. Test for doneness on both thigh and breast. The bird can be deconstructed if there’s not enough room. Just remove the leg and thigh at the joint as a single piece and lay the two pieces on the sheet however they’ll fit. You’ll never look back!



1. Cutting the backbone out.

2. Cutting the other side of the backbone.

3. Backbone out.

4. Snipping the cartilage.

6. Spatchcocked chicken!

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5. Gently press to flatten.

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7. Chicken marinating.

9. Shallots around chicken.

8. Marinade solids under bird.

10. Finished roasted bird.

Cut up the roasted chicken and enjoy. Ellen Kelly is a chef and regular contributor to City Palate. Photos by Regan Johnson



An Entertaining Menu

Each year at this time, we check in with one of our talented chefs or foodie friends for entertaining food to celebrate the holiday season. This year we turn to Keith Luce, chef/owner of the hot, new Tavernetta. Photo by Regan Johnson

Roasted Beets and Caramelized Walnut Salad with Chèvre Croutons 1 to 1-1/2 lbs. small beets, scrubbed and trimmed 2 T. olive oil sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Marinade: 1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil 2 T. red wine vinegar 1 garlic clove, minced 3 T. fresh parsley, chopped

Caramelized walnuts: THE MENU

2/3 c. sugar


1/4 c. water


1 c. walnut pieces


Chèvre croutons: 6 slices crusty baguette 6 oz. fresh goat cheese (chèvre)

Salad: 1/4 c. walnut oil 3 T. sherry vinegar

Cheddar Chive Biscuits with Maple-Bacon Jam Cheddar Chive Biscuits:

Maple-Bacon Jam:

1-1/2 c. all-purpose flour

This recipe will make extra but you won’t struggle to find ways to use up the excess!

2 t. baking powder 1 t. fine sea salt 1/8 t. cayenne pepper 3 T. shortening at room temp. 3 T. unsalted butter at room temp. 1 c. grated sharp cheddar 1 T. minced chives 1/4 t. fresh thyme (leaves only) 1-1/4 c. whipping cream

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl, then add the butter and shortening and cut into the dry ingredients with a hand pastry blender – the mixture should resemble small peas. Add the cream and mix until just blended. Over-mixing will result in tough biscuits. Allow the mixture to stand, covered, for 1 hour in a cool dry place. Roll the dough into a rectangle about 1 inch thick, then cut into 6 equal-sized biscuits. Place the biscuits on a parchment-lined sheet pan and bake about 15 minutes until the biscuits are golden brown.


salt and black pepper 1 bunch fresh watercress 3 small Belgian endives, trimmed and julienned

Roasted and marinated beets: preheat the oven to 400°F. Rub the beets with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Wrap each beet individually in foil and roast until tender, about 1 hour. Allow the beets to cool to room temp, then peel them and cut them into quarters. Combine all the marinade ingredients, add the beets and refrigerate, covered, overnight. To make the caramelized walnuts: oil a baking sheet with sides. Combine the sugar and water in a saucepan and stir over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a slow boil until the syrup becomes golden brown, then remove from the heat, stir in the walnuts, and mix until completely coated. Spread the walnuts in a single layer on the baking sheet pan and allow to cool in a cool, dry place. To make the croutons: toast the baguette slices under the broiler on both sides. Spread the cheese evenly onto all slices and place under the broiler for another minute. Remove and reserve. To finish the salad: in a large bowl, whisk together the walnut oil, sherry vinegar and salt and pepper. Add the watercress and endive and toss well. To serve: Drain the beets and reserve the marinade. Divide the beets among 6 plates. Arrange the salad on top. Garnish with the caramelized walnuts and a chèvre crouton.

1-1/2 lbs. thick-cut applewood-smoked bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

Roman Gnocchi with Simple Plum Tomato Confit

2 shallots, minced


1/3 c. balsamic vinegar

1 quart whole milk

1/3 c. maple syrup

pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

1 T. Dijon mustard

1-1/4 c. instant semolina (Beretta brand is good)

Cut the gnocchi into desired shapes and arrange evenly in 6 buttered, oven-safe baking dishes. Garnish each dish with the remaining cheese evenly. Place the gnocchi under the broiler until golden brown and serve with tomato confit.

1 T. Worcestershire sauce

1 t. fine sea salt

1/2 c. water

Simple Plum Tomato Confit:

freshly ground white pepper to taste

salt and black pepper to taste

3/4 c. freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

6 Roma tomatoes cut into quarters lengthwise and seeded

Render the bacon in a heavy-bottom pan over medium heat until golden brown and lightly crispy. Add shallots and cook until translucent. Add the balsamic, maple syrup, mustard and Worcestershire. Mix together and stir until well mixed. Add the water, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover and slowly simmer for 1 hour.

2 eggs

2 T. olive oil

4 egg yolks

1 t. chopped garlic

1 T. extra-virgin olive oil

1 t. thyme leaves

2 T. unsalted butter

pinch sugar

Prepare an oiled parchment-lined sheet tray. Bring the milk and nutmeg to a simmer in a large saucepan. Slowly whisk in the semolina and stir until smooth and thickened. Season with salt and pepper, stir in half the cheese, then stir in the eggs and yolks until completely combined. Spread the mixture onto the prepared pan and brush with the olive oil. Cover and refrigerate.

fine sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

The jam mixture should be thick and syrup-like. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. To serve, split the warm biscuits in half, spoon the bacon jam onto the bottom half and top with the other half. Pass around to family and/ or guests.


Preheat the oven to 300°F. Mix all ingredients together and place in a shallow baking pan. Roast for 1-1/2 hours, then remove from the oven and use to garnish the gnocchi.

Braised Lamb Shanks with Honey Caramelized Brussels Sprouts and Chestnuts 6 lamb shanks, well trimmed salt and pepper 1/4 c. olive oil 2 oz. thick-cut bacon, cut into pieces 1 medium yellow onion, cut into 1-inch pieces 2 carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces 1 parsnip, cut into 1-inch pieces 1 stalk of celery, cut into 1-inch pieces 5 garlic cloves, peeled

liberally with salt and pepper, reduce the heat to a simmer and cover. Place the covered pan in the oven for about 2-1/2 to 3 hours until the lamb is fork tender. Remove the lamb from the pan, reserve and keep warm. Strain the cooking liquid, return to the pan and reduce by half. Return the lamb to the reduced stock, adjust the seasoning and serve with the Brussels sprouts and chestnuts.

3/4 c. tomato paste

Honey Caramelized Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts

2 c. red wine

5 oz. pancetta, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

4 sprigs fresh thyme

2 T. unsalted butter

2 sprigs fresh rosemary

30 Brussels sprouts, stems trimmed

1 bay leaf

12 peeled chestnuts, cut into quarters

3 c. beef, veal or lamb stock

2 peeled garlic cloves, quartered lengthwise

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Season the lamb liberally with salt and pepper and allow it to rest for about 1 hour. Brown the lamb, a few pieces at a time, in the olive oil in a heavybottomed pan, like an enamel-clad Dutch oven, over medium heat. Once browned on all sides, remove the lamb and reserve. Drain the excess oil, then brown the bacon and vegetables, except the garlic, over medium heat until golden. Add the garlic cloves and tomato paste and lightly cook, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes. Add the wine to deglaze the pan over medium heat. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon to pull up all the caramelized bits from the bottom of the pan. Reduce the wine to a glaze. Add the herbs and stock, return to a boil, then add the lamb shanks. Season

1 T. minced shallot 1 c. honey 6 sage leaves, julienned salt and black pepper to taste 1 c. chopped fresh Italian parsley

Brown the pancetta in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat. Add the butter and brussels sprouts and sauté for about 5 minutes. Add the chestnuts and continue to cook until golden. Add the garlic and shallot and sauté for another 3 minutes.

4 T. lard or butter 5 medium gala apples, peeled and cored juice from 1/2 lemon 1-1/2 c. unbleached all-purpose flour 2 packages active dry yeast 1/4 c. warm water 2/3 c. granulated sugar grated zest of 1 lemon 2 extra-large eggs, whisked

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Soak the raisins in lukewarm water for about 20 minutes. Melt the lard or butter in a double boiler and reserve warm, but not hot. Cut the apples into quarters then into thin slices and toss with the lemon juice to prevent oxidization.

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Add the honey and sage and cook gently until the mixture is nicely caramelized. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper, then add the parsley and stir well to incorporate. Serve with the lamb shanks.

Yeasted Apple Cake with Crème Fraîche 1/2 c. golden raisins

Paradise found!

Place 1 c. of the flour into a bowl and make a well in the centre. Dissolve the yeast in the warm water and pour into the flour well. Add the sugar and reserved melted butter or lard and bring it all together gently. Add the lemon zest and eggs and gently mix until incorporated. Mix in the remaining 1/2 c. flour, drained raisins and half the apple slices, and mix gently until the dough is homogeneous. Prepare a 12-inch springform pan with butter. Pour the mixture into the pan and arrange the remaining apple slices on top. Cover with a cloth and allow to double at room temp. It will take about an hour. Once the dough has doubled in volume, place the cake in the oven for 35-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the centre is clean when removed. Allow the cake to cool for 30 minutes, un-mould, cut into six pieces and serve with crème fraîche. ✤

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Gift these! G R E AT




Canada is 150 years old. This holiday season seems like the perfect time to treat your food lover to some great local and classic Canadian culinary treats and designs as well as the latest in red hot gadgets. This list of gift ideas is true north, strong and tasteful.

by Karen Anderson

SEASON, SLICE AND SCOOP IN STYLE Exotic woods like ebony and zebra from Africa, olive from Israel and kauri from New Zealand, combined with local species and man-made objects are the palette for Cochrane artist Peter Tracy. Once retired, he rekindled his love of woodworking by making custom pens. Culinary utensils – turned objets d’art in his hands – came next. Each pepper and coffee mill, wine corkscrew, pizza wheel and ice cream scoop is unique and sure to be a conversation piece. Peter Tracy Pepper Mill, $130, Ice Cream Scoop $75, Pizza Wheel $85, Britannia Kitchen and Home

MIXER AND MATCH While it doesn’t have the array of colours that the competition has, this Cuisinart SM-50 does come in brushed chrome, white and my favourite – jolly red; which means you can still find a mixer colour to match most any kitchen. For what it lacks in kitchen fashion appeal, it makes up for with might. It has a 500-watt motor versus the next most powerful brand’s 325-watts. Best of all, it’s a quiet motor – not like my 20+ year-old mixer that sounds like a helicopter’s landing on my counter. A tilting head allows for easy removal of the big, wide bowl and a whisk, dough hook and flat mixing paddle are included. Whip up cream for your pumpkin pie and cookies for Santa on Christmas Eve and do it all with the precision of this new 12-speed classic. Cuisinart Precision Master Stand Mixer, 5.5 quart, $499.99, Hudson’s Bay Stores COZY UP AND COOK IN CANMORE Paintbox Lodge is a hidden gem chic boutique hotel in downtown Canmore owned by former Olympians Sara Renner and Thomas Grandi. After years of travelling throughout Europe on the ski circuits, plus Renner’s own family history as proprietors of Assiniboine Lodge, the pair understands excellence in service and accommodation. They’ve got five cozy rooms to curl up in this winter if you want to gift your beloved a little Rocky Mountain retreat. Add a cooking class and enjoy meeting local instructors, including George Bayne, Sue Shih, Aviv Fried and yours truly. You’re guaranteed a gold medal of appreciation with this gift. Paintbox Lodge and Cooking at the Box, check paintboxlodge.com for availability and pricing PEOPLE ARE HIGH ON THIS POT


While the politicians in Ottawa prepare to legalize pot in 2018, a group of ex-Nortel employees from neighbouring Kanata put their technological talents to good use to invent the Insta Pot. And wow, do people love it. Since 2010, without any advertising, they’ve sold over a million units. They call it a multi-cooker because it’s a slow cooker, electric pressure cooker, rice cooker, steamer, yogurt maker, sauté/ browning pan and warming pot all in one.There’s even a Bluetooth programmable version.

Canada may be 150 years old, but our aboriginal people have lived here for many thousands of years. Terry Starr of the Tsimshian, Corey Bulpitt of the Haida, Ryan Cranmer of the Namgis, Paul Windsor of the Haisla, Heiltsuk are just a few of the aboriginal artists whose work is represented by Native Northwest and available at Calgary’s Rubaiyat. Each artist has an impressive pedigree of heritage in their culture’s arts. Food was so plentiful for the first people of the Pacific Northwest that they did not need to roam in search of it. The people had potlatches to share their bounty and, like these modern artists, made serving bowls, utensils and knives decorated with spirit animals, like the raven, eagle and hummingbird, to symbolize gathering and sharing in our interconnectedness. These spirit animals capture the spirit of the season and will make memorable Canada150 Christmas gifts.

Insta Pot, 8 Quart, $199.99, Canadian Tire Tip: Shop early for this pot. It might be “Insta” but finding one for Christmas may take a while given its popularity.



Native Northwest Silver Plated Serving pieces, $70 and up, Rubaiyat     

ROLL WITH IT Local, modern, sustainable – Adrian and Martinus Pool have combined their passions for skateboarding, woodworking and rescuing and reclaiming wood into a company we can all roll with. They make furniture, art and cubist influenced cutting boards, bowls and these groovy rolling pins and they do it all in their Calgary workshop.The rolling pins use waterproof food-safe glue and are turned on a vintage lathe before being treated with a natural oil and beeswax blend. Each is one of a kind and perfect for rolling out your Christmas sugar cookies or gingerbread people. AdrianMartinus Rolling Pin, $88-$90, EcoHubYYC and Reworks Upcycle Shop Kiosk at Calgary Farmers’ Market

SILVER BELLS AND DINNER BELLS Whether you live in our sprawling city or have your own back 40 nearby, this ranch-style dinner bell will help you gather the clan for festivities year round. It includes the strike, hook, triangle and leather hanging strap. Made in Canada, this western chowtime classic is the perfect blend of nostalgia and practicality. “Come and Get It” Triangle Dinner Bell, $42.50, Lee Valley Tools

GOOD KING WASTE-LESS (with apologies to Wenceslas) Three very wise people are doing something about food waste in Alberta. Carole Cooper, Al Cosh and Christine Piecha started Fruits of Sherbrooke as a Not-For-Profit to rescue all the fruit they saw dropping to the ground in their mature neighbourhood in Edmonton. With a crew of volunteers they gather, chop and freeze all summer and then teach preserving classes and sell jams, jellies and crazy good rhubarb ketchup in fall, winter and spring. The money they raise goes to feeding at-risk and hungry school children fruit snacks (which they also make) for the school year. They nourished 27,000 kids last year. These little jam jar jewels will make super stocking stuffers and you’ll become part of their efforts to rescue fruit and feed kids. Wenceslas would be proud. Fruits of Sherbrooke jams and jellies, $12.95/250mL, Peasant Cheese Shop

SWEET AND SAINTLY The town of Saint Quentin, New Brunswick, is the centre of maple syrup production for the Atlantic. This Saint Q maple syrup comes from a sugar bush with 300 hectares of rare Nordic Sugar Maples at the base of the Appalachian Mountains, 800 feet above sea level.There are 76,000 completely organic trees tapped by a single family of owners and processed to create three flavours. The Golden is buttery and best on fresh grapefruit, apples or ice cream. The Amber is caramel-y and pleasing in pecan pie, bread pudding or baked Brie. The Dark is deep and rich for ribs, chili or to sweeten a cocktail. Perhaps the most saintly part of all is that people with disabilities or those on low or retirement incomes do the packaging and labeling for the products. Now that is a saintly sweet company. Saint Q Maple Syrup, $48.95/500mL, The Cookbook Co. Cooks BRIGHT COPPER KETTLES This kettle will sing along with you (it has a two-tone harmonica whistle) as you sing along with Julie Andrews and her Favourite Things during the annual holiday broadcasts of The Sound of Music. With its durable electroplated copper coating on 18/10 stainless steel it will lend timeless beauty to your kitchen.The solid base works on electric, gas, ceramic and glass cook tops and its 1.7 L capacity heats quickly for all that doe-ray-me-fah-so-la-TEA-doe-ing you’ll be doing. Tammi Harmonic Whistling Kettle, $109.99, hutchkitchen.com Tip: Hutch is a Santa-approved Calgary-based online contemporary kitchenware store the food lovers on your list will love. Check it out. ✤

Karen Anderson is the owner of Alberta Food Tours. CITYPALATE.ca NOVEMBER DECEMBER 2017


and these! GREAT








Onward and upward, another year is drawing to a close. While the economy is showing signs of picking up in Calgary, it’s been another tough year for many. However you choose to spend your holiday season, I would like to remind everyone that it’s time spent with friends and family that is most important. With this in mind, I hope you take many moments this holiday season to share a meal or raise a glass with the people you love. Below are drink-related items that might appeal to the bon vivant on your list. Prices may vary slightly. Have a safe and happy holiday season! by Tom Firth

CHÂTEAU DE MONTIFAUD GIFT SET Interested in cognac? Not sure where to begin? The highly accoladed Montifaud cognac house is one of the greats to wet your whistle. The gift pack brings together five 200mL bottles of its range, including the VS, VSOP, an XO and, somewhat unusually, a Pineau des Charentes. Two, in fact, since one is very rare in our market – Pineau des Charentes Rouge. This delicious aperitif is made from cognac added to fresh (generally unfermented) grape must. About $180 on most shelves.

VELVET CHAMPAGNE PLIERS It’s a well-established fact that we just don’t pop the cork on enough bubbly. In part, it’s due to a perception that bubbles are for celebrations, not Tuesday nights. But there also might be a little nervousness about popping the cork with style and doing it mess-free. The glamourous-sounding champagne pliers make it a little easier to pull the cork on your favourite bubbles and the included stopper lets you keep a little fizz for tomorrow’s mimosa. $30 Compleat Cook

PEUGEOT TWO-PRONG “CORKSCREW” The corkscrew everyone should have. A two-prong corkscrew is especially handy for old or reluctant corks (such as port or sauternes…) as it’s unlikely to break the cork. It works by sticking the longer prong between the cork and the bottle neck, and then “walking” the two prongs down as far as they will go. A quick twist and pull, and out comes the cork. Also handy if you like your corks pristine afterwards. $30 Compleat Cook



GLENLIVET WHISKY CUSTOM LABELS I came across this on my Facebook feed and after several days of meaning to do it, finally did and had a blast trying to have some fun making up great labels within the bounds of propriety and decorum. Simply go online to theglenlivet.com/en-ca/label-maker select the bottle you’d like the label for, and come up with your message. Labels arrive in the mail about a week or so later. Free – gloriously free, though you may need to buy a bottle of Glenlivet to put the label on!

CALGARY’S STARR DISTILLING SUMMER LOVE RASPBERRY VODKA Who doesn’t love fresh raspberries? Especially when the snow flies? Summer Love will manage to evoke your sorrow that summer is past, but before we know it (perhaps around May?) it will be back. With over a pound of raspberries going into every bottle, it might be a little overwhelming to just sit back with a glass (even though it’s only 30% ABV), but in a cocktail or punchbowl, or maybe with a little soda or ginger ale, it hits the spot and reminds you that summer is awesome. CSPC +782673 On most shelves for about $40

TAYLOR FLADGATE 325 PORT As we wind down Canada’s 150 year anniversary, it might be nice to celebrate with the 325th anniversary bottling of Taylor Fladgate port, established in 1692. In a unique vintagestyle bottle, it’s a tawny port, meaning it's ready to drink now without further aging and it has all the versatility you want since it has some of the softer, dried strawberry fruits of a younger tawny with just enough of those herbaceous and caramel flavours, too. Whether pairing with nut or caramel desserts, some great cheese, or even a little chocolate over the holidays, I was perfectly content to just sip it one evening. About $43 - $45 on most shelves

2017 KWM WHISKY ADVENT CALENDAR Andrew Ferguson, known as The Scotch Guy, and owner of Kensington Wine Market, travelled the world to source whiskies for the 2017 KWM Whisky Advent Calendar – 25 days of Dram Fine Whisky – featuring artwork done by a local graphic designer and former KWM employee, Jean Paul Berube. Includes a custom-designed glass, 24 50mL whiskies, and a special 100mL Christmas Day bottling from the Scotch Malt Whisky Society. Available for purchase online or in store while supplies last. Details at kensingtonwinemarket.com/products/ WAC2017 or visit the shop at 1257 Kensington Rd. NW. $375

GLENFIDDICH EXPERIMENTAL SERIES IPA EXPERIMENT Single malt whisky aged in India pale ale casks? Hello! Two of my favourite things. Fairly soft on the nose with cereal aromas and a decidedly citrus and floral character. Light, easygoing, and certainly interesting with reasonably delicate apple and citrus flavours, the IPA comes from a Speyside craft brewer who is aging his beer in American Oak casks. The first in a new series of experimental bottlings from Glenfiddich. Who says there isn’t anything new under the sun? CSPC +789886 on most shelves for about $85

LEE VALLEY KEFERLOHER BEER STEINS With the huge interest in craft beer and with all the new Alberta and Calgarybased craft breweries, it has never been a better time to be a beer lover. Why not serve your craft suds in something a little different? These stoneware steins come from the Westerwold region of Germany, and in addition to looking like you mean business, it may elevate your appreciation of what great beer is all about. Dirndl not included. Available at Lee Valley and leevalley.com $22.50

ZUIDAM OUDE GENEVER 3 YEARS OLD An unusual category that is relatively unknown in Alberta, though it’s been around for many centuries. An aromatized, barrel-aged spirit from the Netherlands, it’s more akin to a brandy or whisky on the nose and palate. While it has some of the aromatics of gin, it’s far more restrained and something a little on the special side. Deeply layered and quite smooth, I’d enjoy it neat, with a little water, or in a Manhattan. $70 NINETY 20-YEAROLD CANADIAN RYE WHISKY I don’t drink a lot of rye, but this was a treat to drink. Bottled at cask strength, the nose is light and airy with spice and citrus, while on the palate, remarkably smooth and almost gentle, though it has that spicy kick rye fans love. It would benefit from a splash of water, but other mixes would do this no justice. A bargain at about $60.

EAU CLAIRE DISTILLERY PRICKLY PEAR EQUINEOX Darlings of the craft distilling scene in southern Alberta, the folks at ECD, have quickly forged a reputation for high quality spirits. Never ones to rest on their laurels, they have a distillery worth visiting in Turner Valley, some exciting new products coming down the pipe, and a few brands that are already classics. Take the Prickly Pear, the barley-based spirit flavoured with prickly pear cactus, yielding an almost tropical, fruity character perfect for any number of cocktails – or even neat. $49

VILLAGE BREWERY 150 CAN DAY In theory, this little idea was tied into Canada’s 150 this year, but I think someone at the brewery stayed up a little too late and came up with an epiphany. One Hundred and Fifty cans of Calgary’s Village Brewery in a single pack. No one asked if it should be done, just if it could be done. This little whopper, if nicely wrapped under the tree might seem like a compound saw for a special someone, but what it is is 70 cans of Village Blonde, 50 cans of Village Squeeze, and 30 cans of the Village Blacksmith. Wonderful beers perfect for a holiday party or for your little beer aficionado in the house. Warning, it weighs about 150 lbs. Tom Firth is @cowtownwine.com. Call the brewery for availability. $400 ✤



THE UBIQUITY OF by Laura Di Lembo

Babka comes to us from Eastern Europe, Old World yeasted sweet bread to take with sips of scalding tea. Babka is suddenly making an appearance in my life after a very long absence.

Yotam Ottolenghi’s Krantz Cakes (with a slight modification – a more generous ratio of filling to bread!)

and leave it to rise for a few hours until doubled in bulk. Alternately, the dough can be left to rise overnight in the fridge. Refrigerated dough should be taken out of the fridge for a couple of hours to bring it to room temperature before baking.

What strikes me as odd about this is that during my childhood, I believed it was an insider’s secret from my Ashkenazi Jewish family, gracing our tables because we knew the select kosher or Polish bakeries that made babka. We bought it, but babka wasn’t mainstream, not seen in cookbooks or in the world at large outside of my predominantly Jewish neighbourhood near Montreal. And then, recently, like a time warp, babka is back! It’s making appearances on award-winning food blogs and in highly acclaimed cookbooks. If we take our cues from New York City, it’s clear that babka is now enjoying some well-deserved attention. Articles in the New York Times are singing its glory and long lineups at Manhattan’s Breads Bakery every morning at 11a.m. when babka appears are a testament to the loyal following. I recently purchased Breads Bakery’s cookbook: Breaking Breads, A New World of Israeli Baking by Uri Scheft and there is a whole chapter on babka. As if the traditional chocolate, cinnamon and walnut versions weren’t inspiring enough, we now have halvah babka, ricotta streusel babka, babka pie, apple babka, savoury za’atar babka twists and poppy seed babka. These are glorious, golden creations, offering loads of rolling, filling, twisting, proofing, baking and noshing entertainment. My initiation to babka-making began with Yotam Ottolenghi’s much-loved book Jerusalem. His babka is called a krantz cake, and it takes a standard babka many steps beyond the basics. Richly veined with the most unctuous chocolate/nut mix, it’s topped with a glaze that sweetly crackles on the teeth. And the technique makes me swoon: slather the dough with the delicious goop, roll it up and then slice it along its length to reveal the striations. Twist these strands together, co-joined in a bread pan. Each slice reveals babka’s inner heart of chocolate and nuts, taunting you to take the next piece because you can see exactly how much generous filling awaits you. With babka enjoying the populist glory it deserves, and debates raging about which ones are best, let’s settle it right now and make our own, which are always the most loved. I offer up an exquisite range of flavours and techniques, the classic chocolate/nut version as well as one with a silky halvah and tahini filling, and a savoury goat cheese and za’atar rendition. We will perform some rolling and slicing, as well as some twisting and turning today in the kitchen. Let’s get messy... First things first: there are two basic ways to make babka dough, one Easy and one Complicated. I give you Easy. And we use this easy base recipe for all three of our creations.



Babka dough: 4-1/2 c. all-purpose flour plus extra for dusting the dough as it forms 1/2 c. granulated sugar 2 t. fast-rising active dry yeast grated zest of 1 scrubbed lemon 3 extra-large eggs 1/2 c. water generous 1/4 t. kosher salt 2/3 c. unsalted butter at room temperature, cut into 3/4“ cubes canola oil for greasing the pans

Chocolate nut filling: 3/4 c. confectioners sugar 1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa powder 1 t. ground cinnamon 6 oz. dark chocolate, melted (I’m a fan of the Presidents’ Choice bars from France, available at Real Canadian Superstores, with 70% cocoa solids) 3/4 c. unsalted butter, melted 1-1/2 c. walnuts, lightly toasted, cooled and coarsely chopped 3 T. granulated sugar

Sugar syrup: 2/3 c. water 1-1/4 c. granulated sugar

For the dough, place the flour, sugar, yeast, and lemon zest in a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook and mix on low speed for 1 minute. Add the eggs and water and mix on low speed for a few seconds. Increase the speed to medium and mix for 3 minutes, until the dough comes together. Add the salt and then start adding the butter, a few cubes at a time, mixing until it is evenly incorporated into the dough. Continue mixing for about 10 more minutes until the dough is completely smooth, elastic and shiny. During the mixing, you will need to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times as well as add small amounts of flour to keep the dough from sticking to the bowl. Gather the dough into a ball and place it in a large bowl. Rub it all over with canola oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap

Grease two 9”x 4” loaf pans with canola oil. Line the bottom of each pan with a rectangle of parchment paper that goes up the sides. Make the filling by mixing together all the ingredients into a spreadable paste. Deflate the risen dough with a good punch or two. Flatten the ball with your hands and place it on a floured rolling surface. Cut the dough into two pieces. Keep the second piece covered with plastic wrap while you work on the first piece. Roll out the dough into a rectangle measuring 15”x 11”. The longest edge should be closest to you. Spread half of the filling over the surface of dough, spreading it as evenly as you can. Brush a little bit of water over the long end farthest from you. Use both hands to roll up the rectangle into a tight cylinder. Start from the long side that is closest to you. Press the dampened end to seal the log and use both hands to even out the roll. Rest it on its seam. With a sharp knife, cut the roll in half lengthwise. You will see all the layers of filling visible along the length of both halves. With the cut sides facing up, press together the top ends of the two strands. Lift the right strand over the left so that you are weaving the two strands together, allowing the cut sides to face up. Continue a few times until you reach the bottom of the strands and pinch these ends together. You can squeeze and tuck the twisted bread as you lift it to fit into the prepared loaf pan. Repeat this process with the second ball of dough. Cover the loaf pans with a dampened tea towel and leave the breads to rise for 1-1/2 - 2 hours, until almost doubled in bulk. The risen breads should fill the loaf pans generously. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Remove the tea towels from the loaves and place the breads on the middle rack of the oven. Bake for about 30 minutes, until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean (there may be some molten chocolate on your skewer but there should be no wet dough). While the breads are baking, make the sugar syrup. Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Allow the syrup to boil for 2 minutes, until it is just starting to thicken. Remove it from the heat and allow the syrup to cool down slightly. As soon as the breads come out of the oven, brush all of the syrup over them. It is important to use all of the syrup, even if it looks like a lot. Let the breads cool to room temperature and remove them from the pans. Dive in! They freeze very well if you can resist eating them all at once. Makes 2 loaves.

The next babka on our roster is Halvah Babka, a crosspollination of traditional babka, American Monkey Bread and Yemenite Kubaneh, a rich and pillowy brioche-like treat. Do you know halvah? It's a dense, sweet, grainy brick of sweetened ground sesame seeds  seen all over the Middle East in markets and specialty food shops. It is sinfully satisfying, nutty and aromatic and its symbiotic pairing with sesame-based tahini in this babka is an inspired marriage.

Halvah Babka (adapted from the Breaking Breads cookbook) 1 recipe for babka dough (see Krantz Cakes recipe)

Halvah filling: 1 large egg 1/3 c. dark brown sugar, lightly packed 1-1/2 T. runny honey 1 t. pure vanilla extract 2 T. unsalted butter, room temperature 2-1/2 T. all-purpose flour 1/4 t. kosher salt 1 T. cornstarch 3/4 c. tahini (sesame paste), divided 3/4 c. vanilla halvah, finely crumbled (available in Middle Eastern stores, such as Basha Foods International)

Tahini sugar syrup: Rolled out babka dough with tahini filling, sprinkles of halvah and green flecks of pistachios

1/4 c. granulated sugar scant 1/4 c. water remaining tahini

To make the filling, whisk together the egg, brown sugar, honey and vanilla in a medium sized bowl. Add the butter and whisk until smooth and well combined. Whisk in the flour, salt, cornstarch and 2/3 c. of the tahini and mix until smooth. Chill the mixture in the fridge for about 30 minutes before using.

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Generously butter two 9”x 4” loaf pans. Line the bottom of each pan with a rectangle of parchment paper that goes up the sides.

Halvah babka rising in loaf pans

Take your babka dough (after it has risen once), punch it down, and place it on a floured surface. Roll it into an 18”x 10” rectangle. The long edge should be closest to you. The dough should be just a tad thinner than 1/4”. Spread the filling evenly over all the dough right to the edges. With your fingers, crumble up the halvah into little pieces that you sprinkle evenly over the filling. Gently press them down to help them stick. Roll the dough up from the long edge into a tight cylinder. Gently lift the log and pull the ends carefully to stretch it and make the cylinder even tighter. Slice the log crosswise into 1-inch pieces. You will get about 24 pieces. Divide the pieces between the 2 loaf pans, cut sides facing up, fitting them in tightly. Continue stacking the pieces in the pans until all the pieces are used. Cover each pan with a dampened tea towel and leave the breads to rise for about 1-1/2 - 2 hours, until doubled in volume.

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While the babkas rise, make the tahini sugar syrup. Combine the granulated sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring it to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Let it boil for 2 minutes. Remove it from the heat and stir in the remaining tahini. Mix well. Let the mixture cool slightly. When the breads have risen, preheat the oven to 350°F. Bake the babkas in the middle of the oven for 25-30 minutes, until they are a deep golden brown. Immediately brush each baked babka with the tahini sugar glaze. Allow the breads to cool. Remove them from the pans and serve to your fortunate friends and family. Halvah babka, glazed and cooling

Makes 2 loaves.

continued on page 26 CITYPALATE.ca NOVEMBER DECEMBER 2017


THE UBIQUITY OF continued from page 25

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And now for something completely different: Za’atar Twist Babkas, savoury, spicy, cheesy, herby creations to wow your people with. This recipe is also adapted from the Breaking Breads cookbook. Za’atar is a flavourful spice mix of dried thyme, sumac and sesame seeds.

Za’atar Twist Babka 1 recipe babka dough (see Krantz cakes recipe on page 24)

Za’atar filling: 3 T. sesame seeds 1-1/3 c. chèvre cheese, at room temperature 1 jalapeño pepper, seeds and stem removed 1 T. extra virgin olive oil 1 c. feta cheese 1/2 c. pine nuts or walnuts, lightly toasted and cooled

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1 c. fresh Italian parsley or cilantro or a mixture of the two 3 T. za’atar (available at Middle Eastern groceries such as Basha Foods International)

To make the filling, toast the sesame seeds in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring often, until they are light gold. This should take 2-3 minutes. Transfer the seeds to the bowl of a food processor. Then, add the chèvre, jalapeño, olive oil, feta, pine nuts, parsley and za’atar. Pulse on and off a few times until you have a coarse paste. Grease two 9”x 4” loaf pans with canola oil. Line the bottoms of each pan with a rectangular piece of parchment paper that also goes up the sides. Punch down your dough and divide it in two. Cover the second piece of dough with plastic wrap while you work on the first piece. On a floured surface, roll out the piece of dough to a rectangle measuring 15”x 11”. The long side should be closest to you. Spread half of the za’atar mixture evenly over the dough, right to the edges. Brush a little bit of water on the long end farthest from you. Use both hands to roll up the rectangle into a tight log, starting at the long side closest to you.

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With a sharp knife, cut the log in half along its length. It is OK if the layers flay open as you do this. With the cut sides facing up, press together the top ends of the two strands. Lift the right strand over the left so that you are weaving the two strands together, allowing the cut sides to face up. Continue a few times until you reach the bottom of the strands and pinch these ends together. You can squeeze and tuck the twisted bread as you lift it to fit into the prepared loaf pan. Repeat this procedure with the second ball of dough. Cover the loaf pans with a dampened tea towel and leave the breads to rise for 1-1/2 - 2 hours, until almost doubled in bulk. The risen dough should fill the loaf pans generously. When you are ready to bake the babkas, preheat the oven to 375°F. Remove the tea towels from the loaves and place the breads on the middle rack of the oven. Bake for about 30 minutes, until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Sprinkle each loaf with a little bit of extra za’atar, if you wish. Makes 2 loaves. The current ubiquity of babka is cause for celebration, marking the availability of what was once an esoteric ethnic specialty into the mainstream of our daily lives. Babka is back because babka is great. You can see it on food writer David Lebovitz’s Pinterest board, The Kitchn’s blog posts, The Atlantic Monthly Review’s Facebook page, and in Martha Stewart Living magazines. From the villages of Eastern Europe to our kitchen tables today, we are curating traditions and moulding them to our 21st century tastes in bountiful New World babka baking. ✤ Laura Di Lembo is amused by the Yiddish colloquialism “babkas,” which means “nothing,” as in “he gives me babkas.” Let our babka be “something” special!

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Dining out in Calgary can be whatever you want it to be these days. A casual stop at your favourite neighbourhood watering hole, street eats from around the world, an upper-scale dining experience or even one where you sit at a long table on a bridge. Our choices are dictated by budget, time and appetite. If you’re tired of the same old routine, we’ve highlighted seven unique food establishments worth checking out. Whether you’re hoping for comfort food, or to try something entirely unique, Calgary will never let you down.

by Wanda Baker


BUTTERMILK FINE WAFFLES 330 - 17 Ave. SW buttermilkfinewaffles.com Sitting under the CRMR offices, Buttermilk Fine Waffles is the go-to spot for Belgian waffles along 17th Avenue. Owner Sam Friley visited waffle houses all over the world before deciding on his grandmother’s recipe. This special recipe utilizes buttermilk and whipped egg whites to create the kind of waffles we all love, crispy on the outside and moist on the inside. With a no-reservation policy, it’s first-come, first-served. Order your waffles at the counter, find a seat, play a game and wait for your name to be called. Try the breakfast waffles, savoury offerings, sweet variations or start plain and build your own waffles from their selection of toppings. B ONE B R OT H T O WAR M T HE S OUL

BRÜHE CAFÉ & DAIRY BAR 1024 Bellevue Ave. SE bruhe.ca Located in the heart of Ramsay, Brühe Café & Dairy Bar is a small and mighty food stand on a mission to nourish and inspire. Co-owners Andrea and Arnel Beaubrun, a husband and wife team, are naturopathic doctors who decided to open the café when they were unable to find cool, funky places in Calgary for families to go to for healthy treats. With only 300 square feet to operate in, their menu is small but packs a healthy punch. Hot bone broth available in the cup will warm you up or buy it frozen to go. “Bulletproof” coffee is made with grass-fed butter, “liquid gold” is tea featuring turmeric, kombucha on tap, local organic small-batch ice cream and gluten-free items are available throughout the year.


GRATE & BARREL 627 - 1 Ave. NE facebook.com/grateandbarrel Grate & Barrel was once located in Mission. Leasing challenges were the reason Mhairi O’Donnell decided to close shop and find a new location. After a short hiatus from the Calgary restaurant scene, Grate & Barrel reopened earlier this year in the popular Bridgeland community. Offering tasty sandwiches, this grilled cheese and pie milkshake joint is known for naming its menu items after local musicians. The MBF grilled cheese featuring marinara sauce and jalapeño poppers is named after Michael Bernard Fitzerald. The Blues Can is a blueberry pie and chocolate ice cream milkshake. Creative sides include Tater Tots, bugles and hickory sticks. Wash it all down with a beer or glass of wine enjoyed inside or, next summer, on the large patio located directly behind the restaurant. FR E S H AS CLUCK

CLUCK ‘N’ CLEAVER 1511 - 14 St. SW cluckncleaver.com Using a secret blend of more than 10 spices, newly crowned Food Network’s Top Chef Canada Nicole Gomes serves up juicy, crispy southern fried chicken at Cluck ‘n’ Cleaver, a small eat-in, takeout joint co-owned with her sister Francine. Order fried chicken by the piece, in the box, or rotisserie chicken sold as a quarter, half or whole bird. Side dishes include potatoes, fries with gravy, chicken poutine, salads and buttermilk biscuits. Wash it down with malted milkshakes, iced tea or hit up the Squawk and Walk cooler for a vintage soda. With only a few parking stalls, a stand-up counter inside and a few benches in front, plan to grab your chicken and go. GE T S TUFFED

NAINA’S KITCHEN 121 - 17 Ave. SE nainaskitchen.com In a city known for its Alberta beef and burgers, Erin Mueller has carved out a unique concept with her stuffed burger, build your own mac and cheese or create your own poutine offering. Customers can be creative with their food by adding in any of several ingredients on the menu. Naina’s, (pronounced nine-ahs), is Welsh for grandmother and means great stuffed burgers. Erin and her mom Kelly (the naina) opened Naina’s Kitchen in a strip mall near the Crossroads Market seven years ago, offering comfort food like grilled cheese sandwiches, homemade soup and burgers in a 28-seat café. In their early years, they won best burger and runners-up in YYC Burger Week, made Avenue Magazine's top three best burgers in Calgary and were featured on You Gotta Eat Here. Having outgrown the small café, Erin and her team moved to a new location in 2016 and planted roots in a bigger, brighter, 85-seat restaurant on 17th Ave. SE, offering more comfort food favourites. Since opening the new restaurant, they competed and won silver in the Canadian Food Championships the same year.




JELLY MODERN DOUGHNUTS 1414 - 8 St. SW jellymoderndoughnuts.com There’s doughnuts and then there’s Jelly Modern doughnuts. Rita and Rosanne Tripathy opened their flagship store, Jelly Modern Doughnuts, in 2011 utilizing their combined talents to create gourmet doughnuts. They appeared on You Gotta Eat Here and were featured on Donut Showdown on the Food Network where they did a spin on the popular Nenshi salted caramel doughnut topped with deep-fried carrot curls. This creation won them $10,000. Today, with five locations in both Calgary and Toronto, plus their Jelly Food Truck, there’s no slowing down for these sisters. Doughnuts are made fresh daily using local ingredients, no preservatives or transfats. With two sizes to choose from – regular or three-bite – hand-dipped, hand-filled, cake variation or the chef’s weekend special, these doughnuts are a must-try. WE ALL S CR E AM FOR LIQUID NITR OGE N ICE CR E AM

NICE CREAM #4, 4604 - 37 St. SW thenicecream.com This locally owned ice cream shop features ice cream made using -200°C liquid nitrogen. Nice Cream creates its silky ice cream by freezing the cream or milk as quickly as possible, so the ice crystals don’t have time to build, leaving you with a smooth, tasty ice cream. With two years under its belt, Nice Cream was, and still is, the only stand-alone shop in Calgary to offer liquid nitrogen-made ice cream. Using fresh ingredients, the milk, cream and flavours are mixed to create the ice cream. Order your flavour, pick a vessel (house-made waffle cone or bowl), select toppings and watch the magic happen. While slightly more expensive than regular ice cream, due to the nitrogen and equipment required, this ice cream with a scientific twist appeals to the mad scientist in all of us. ✤ Wanda Baker is a Calgary-based food writer and author of bakersbeans.ca who writes about life, adventures, and food.

Knives that are made of more


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Feeding THE COMMUNITY 323 lbs. of bread from Prairie Mill Bread Co.

Produce donation from Blush Lane Organic Market

Bread enroute from Sidewalk Citizen to Elizabeth Fry Society

Dairy donation from Blush Lane Organic Market


by Catherine Van Brunschot

Each day in Calgary, an unconventional legion of volunteers fans out across the city. They slip into the back doors of restaurants, bakeries, food markets, and coffee bars, to emerge minutes later, perhaps with a carload of day-old bread, or containers of cooked pasta, or bins of shelf-weary produce and dairy. In SUVs and hatchbacks and Uber-donated rides, they deliver their cargo to agencies that serve our most vulnerable citizens, converting leftover food destined for the landfill into hot lunches for kids, meals for the homeless, sandwiches for women fleeing domestic violence – the list goes on.

Here’s how LeftOvers works: Volunteers log in to the LeftOvers website and peruse the listings of upcoming deliveries for those that fit into their own personal schedule (slots include weekdays, evenings, or weekends). One click signs you up to make a delivery; a second click enters all the info that you’ll need onto your phone’s electronic calendar, including addresses and any special requirements to meet Alberta Health Services standards (like a cooler for some items). For those who commute downtown by public transit, LeftOvers has partnered with Uber for free rides on certain delivery routes close to the city core.

This is LeftOvers Calgary in action, a grassroots organization tackling both hunger and food waste, one trunk-load at a time. With its current team of 200 volunteers, LeftOvers rescues 4,000 pounds of food per week in the city – but has a waiting list of food donors and agencies eager to join.

During the winter months that she spends in Arizona, other volunteers seamlessly pick up the spot she vacates on the schedule. Halpen’s motivation is simple: “The food waste is ridiculous. Why didn’t people think of this 20 years ago?”

If you’ve heard of LeftOvers, you probably know its origin story. Five years ago, entrepreneur Lourdes Juan helped her cousin deliver a truckload of unsold bread from her neighbourhood COBS bakery to the Calgary Drop-In Centre. “That should keep you going awhile,” she told DI staff – but they assured her it would be gone in 24 hours. Startled by this yawning need, and wondering how many other vendors might face problems of surplus food disposal, Juan sat down at her computer that night to see what she could find out. What she discovered was astounding. According to a 2011 study commissioned by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), fully one third of the world’s food production never makes it into people’s mouths. Food waste occurs at every step of the supply chain, discarded during processing, transport, and warehousing, and into the garbage bins of grocery stores, restaurants, and home kitchens. A 2013 follow-up report by the FAO estimated food waste to be one of the world’s largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions. In Canada alone, approximately 170,000 tonnes of edible food – or 300 million meals, valued at $31 billion – is sent to landfills every year, according to a 2014 report from Value Chain Management International. Almost half of that food waste – 47 percent – stems directly from consumers. Starting with a tiny band of friends and family, Juan launched LeftOvers and harnessed the power of social media to build a volunteer team that now systematically rescues food from 55 donors and delivers it to 32 service agencies each week. For her efforts, Juan was named one of Avenue Magazine’s Top 40 Under 40 (2013), recipient of the Culbert Family Award for Philanthropy (2015), and just last April, one of CBC’s Top 10 Canadian Change Makers.



“It’s so easy,” volunteer Alix Halpen tells me, as she loads up her Mini Cooper with leftover pastries from Starbucks Kingsland. She’s delivering them to the Calgary Food Bank, located a block from her office. “It’s not really out of my way much. It takes 15 minutes – and I can grab a coffee while I’m there.”

For the volunteer who asked that I identify him only as “Food Santa,” the drive is deeply personal. “I’ve been there,” he says, referring to a time when unemployment and health concerns left him and his wife financially short, necessitating their own trip to the Food Bank. “There are so many people going hungry... and so much food being thrown out. If we can save one percent of what goes into compost and landfills, we can alleviate so much suffering.” Principal Bruce Campbell sees some of that suffering among his students at St. Peter School in southeast Calgary. But mention “Spaghetti Tuesdays” (with LeftOvers delivered pasta from The Old Spaghetti Factory, Marlborough) and the eyes light up among the 220 students who attend the elementary school’s daily meal programs. A bounty of research supports the connection between food and student learning. “If they have a full stomach, they’re more likely to be focused, more likely to be engaged in what’s going on at school,” says Campbell. Children are a significant focus of the Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter (CWES), as well, where more than 56 percent of its residents in 2016 were kids fleeing with their mothers from domestic violence. “Our food budget is astonishingly low,” says CWES representative, Donald Ogden. “The food we get donated through LeftOvers and others allows us to put our money into counselling, to the Helpline, and to community programs.” It’s a reality echoed by Jordan Hamilton of the Calgary Drop-In Centre, which serves more than 3,000 meals a day to 1,000+ homeless and other vulnerable individuals, on provincial funding of $2.09 per day, per person. “We get an incredible volume of food from LeftOvers, and it takes a lot of pressure off our kitchen. We can’t ignore our bellies – and that can be what brings people into the building. Once they’re inside, they may speak to a counsellor. And it’s that exchange that can change someone’s life, which started with a nutritious, delicious meal.”

Building connections through food motivates produce donors like the Calgary Farmers’ Market to partner with LeftOvers, too. “We’re all about building community... where people can connect with one another and connect with their food and their farmers,” says Marketing and Events Coordinator, Leilani Olynik. “I think that extends to the populations that are at risk... For us, it would be remiss not to extend that community to all of our city.”

Prepping dinner at the Calgary Drop-In Centre

Stephen Szostak, owner-chef of The Fine Diner Bistro in Inglewood, shares that philosophy. “We want to make good food and make a difference,” he says. But his 90 percent waste-free restaurant takes things a step further in its attempt to change attitudes, as well.

“We’re proud to promote the fact that we’re not throwing food out,” says Szostak. He understands that there’s a high demand for food right now, and he wants his restaurant to help alleviate that problem. “And for our culinary team, especially our apprentices and interns, to see that there’s no such thing as waste – it’s huge.”

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Waste not, want not? Maybe our grandparents had something there. To find out more, volunteer, or donate to LeftOvers Calgary, check out rescuefood.ca.

THE FOOD LOVER’S REAL LIFE GUIDE TO REDUCING FOOD WASTE We’re spoiled for choice here in Calgary – and consequently vulnerable to waste. The City of Calgary tells us that food accounts for 36% of all material going from our homes into our landfills – and that 52% of that discarded food is edible. Time to look at our own kitchens? You bet. 1. CONSIDER YOUR FRIDGE YOUR BLACK BOX CHALLENGE. Start with what’s lurking in your crisper drawer and build your menu from there. Destined to get your creative juices flowing. 2. CHANNEL YOUR INNER EUROPEAN. Buy what you need every 1 or 2 days. Cultivates shopping fantasies of Parisian patisseries and Tuscan markets. 3. MAKE A LIST AND STICK TO IT. BAHAHAHAHAHA! For me, this works right up until I see the bin of luscious ataulfo mangos and I gotta have them. See #4 for help. 4. KNOW YOUR WEAKNESSES AND PLAN FOR THEM. Keep a stash of recipes for the things you know you’ll buy on impulse – and for the things you throw out most often. Twenty-six ways to use up tired greens? I’ve got ‘em.


5. ENTICED BY NEW AND EXCITING PRODUCTS? Shop at the simplest store for what’s on your list. Stick to your necessary aisles. Wear blinkers. Boring. But sometimes boring is good. (Schedule a “let’s see what’s new” day to make up for it). 6. NO TIME FOR CREATIVITY TODAY? Make friends with your freezer. Throw leftovers in a zip-lock. Save stale bread for a beautiful panzanella. Freeze dribs and drabs of tomato paste and other sauces in ice-cube trays for future inspirations.


7. LIKE TO STAY ON TOP OF THE LATEST/BEST RESTAURANTS? Duh – don’t buy a week’s worth of groceries at one go. Difficult for those of us of a certain age. See #2. 8. USE YOUR GREEN CART AS A LAST RESORT. Consider the water, land, feed, fuel, labour resources – all used to get those lovely comestibles into your fridge. Relegating them to compost? THIS IS YOUR BLACK BOX FAIL.

For more tips, check out rescuefood.ca/10-tips-for-reducing-food-waste-at-home ✤ Catherine Van Brunschot is a local food and travel writer and a volunteer driver for LeftOvers Calgary. Follow her upcoming quest to reduce food waste in her own kitchen on her “Fresh Bites” blog at catherinevanbrunschot.com.

207 9 Ave SW . 403.263.3003 . sukiyakihouse.com FREE EVENING PARKING CITYPALATE.ca NOVEMBER DECEMBER 2017


Food Fraud


by Erin Lawrence

In the criminal underworld, there is a handful of stock goods every bad guy can move. Guns, drugs, illegally modified weapons, tobacco products, olive oil. Wait... what? Nefarious characters dabbling in a product usually known for its dazzling drizzling and heart-healthy properties? True story. Olive oil is one of the wold’s most fraudulently trafficked foods. So seriously does Italy take the adulteration of one of its most traded goods that in February, 2017, balaclava-clad Carabinieri arrested 33 people who now stand accused of running a criminal syndicate that trafficked fake olive oil to North America. The crime is known as food fraud and it fuels a black market that costs importers, companies and ultimately consumers, billions, annually. “Food fraud can take many forms, from things like dilution and short-weighting to misrepresenting label claims, like country of origin or ‘organic’ or ‘sustainable’ labelling. There’s even more egregious examples where ingredients of a lesser economic value are substituted for ones of higher value,” explains Dr Robert Hanner, the Associate Director for the Canadian Barcode of Life Network, headquartered at the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario, at the University of Guelph. You could also call Hanner a food detective. He’s been working with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) on methods to uncover food fraud and his primary weapon is DNA. Hanner and his team are able to test foods like seafood, meat, olive oil and even processed foods to verify that what’s being sold or traded is what it’s supposed to be. “DNA testing has become so powerful because there’s DNA in nearly every cell of every organism,” he explains. We can look at this species-specific variation in the DNA sequence and use that as a way of identifying even processed products.” Hanner has been at the centre of numerous high profile cases of food fraud. In August, 2017, a study in which he played a role found that up to 20 percent of sausage sold in Canada contained meat that was not listed on the label. Some of the sausages tested contained horse meat, while other sausage labelled as 100 percent turkey contained only chicken. Still others labelled as pork contained beef. That’s just the tip of the iceberg. “We’ve seen things like papaya seeds being mixed in with peppercorns as kind of a cheap filler,” reveals Hanner. “We’ve seen cases where sheep or goat milk or goat cheese are also adulterated with cow’s milk. We’ve seen cases where farmed Atlantic salmon is substituted for wild Pacific. Then of course there are well-known examples of things like olive oil that can quite often be adulterated with safflower or other cheaper oils.” Dr. Aline Dimitri, of the CFIA, says food fraud is much more serious than mislabelling. “Where this issue becomes challenging is when the food fraud can lead to a food safety issue. So, for instance, if somebody has substituted one ingredient with another ingredient that causes allergies to people, then that particular situation for us is looked at beyond food fraud. It’s looked at as a food safety issue,” Dimitri says. “Maybe there is bacteria that can come through. Maybe there’s a chemical that can have an impact on human health.” There have been cases where food fraud has done harm. In 2008, baby formula that had made its way to Canada was found to have traces of melamine, a chemical used to make plastic. In China, where the formula originated, hundreds of thousands of infants got sick, and several died. “We’ve seen some cases of puffer fish being mislabeled as other species and poisoning people,” says Hanner. “We’ve seen things like escolar – that can cause diarrhea if you eat too much of it – being marketed as white tuna at sushi restaurants.” So how does food fraud happen? Is it a case of accidental mislabelling, like failing to update ingredients on packages once the recipe changes? Or is it more deliberate? “We have had situations where it’s not large-scale, but, for instance, somebody forgot that the formulation has changed and now there’s an egg product inside and they didn’t put it on the label,” says Dimitri.

Mistakes do happen, but larger-scale food fraud tends to be motivated by profits, according to the work Hanner’s done. According to Hanner, “It’s always species of lower economic value being substituted for one of a higher value. This seemed to indicate that it was economically motivated food fraud and not just simply a case of mistaken I.D. If it were just the fact that some species can look alike and often get confused, you might think once in a while we’d get the good stuff when we pay for the cheap stuff. But we don’t have examples of that.” Where does food fraud originate? Is it unscrupulous fishermen trying to turn a quicker buck? A shady importer hoping for a bigger slice of the pie? Is it a dishonest shop owner thinking no one will notice? The answer is all of the above, according to Hanner and Dimitri. Food supply chains today are long and complex, spanning numerous countries and actors. Fish from Asia might end up at a Lebanese food processing plant, which uses wrap or packaging from an Israeli supplier. The finished product could then be sold to an Italian importer, who uses a Greek shipping company. Then there are the various wholesalers and retailers. It’s sometimes impossible to tell where in the supply chain the fraud originates. When food fraud is caught, the penalties can range from a strongly worded letter from the CFIA to product recalls and even prosecution. Ontario greenhouse company Mucci Farms was fined $1.5 million in 2016 for selling Mexican tomatoes and cucumbers labelled as “Product of Canada”. Hanner’s lab has been busy testing both suspicious foods and random samples. While he’s uncovered some significant and frightening examples of fraud, he and Dimitri both agree that future battles against food fraud need to be fought on the docks and at borders with faster testing, and on-site investigation to protect consumers before tainted or misrepresented food makes it to a store. “It’s great that we can send something off to a lab and get an answer a week later but what we need is to be able to identify something in a shipping container before we take possession of it. We need to be able to use these results in realtime business intelligence.” Both Dimitri and Hanner say diners and shoppers are often the ones who first get suspicious and start asking questions, or tip off official agencies, which is exactly what the CFIA wants. “Go to the store manager and ask questions: where does this come from, who produced it, how can you be sure that it is what it says it is? If you’re not satisfied, call the company that makes the food, ask them questions,” says Dimitri. “If ultimately you are still not satisfied, the CFIA will always be here and we will happily answer the questions and follow up on complaints that we receive. But the consumer has to really be at the forefront.”

Anatomy of a Recall




Food recalls may be the most extreme result when food fraud is detected. When food safety may be compromised, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) sets recall procedures in motion, and only then do Canadians become aware of a problem. Often recalls can be weeks or months in the making.

Phase 1: Undeclared ingredients or potential allergens are suspected in a food product. These are often identified through random testing, or when a pattern of illnesses or allergic reactions is noticed by doctors and reported to officials. Phase 2: The CFIA does a “trace back” where the problem food or ingredient is identified, as well as the manufacturer or importer, through a complex investigation. The investigation also traces where the problem food has been distributed in a “trace forward”. Phase 3: If a health safety risk is found, a recall may be ordered, and this is where consumers will see stories appear in the news. Most recalls in Canada are voluntary, meaning the company responsible will handle the recall, removing its affected food from store shelves. Where companies don’t comply, the CFIA has the power to step in. The CFIA oversees approximately 250 recalls a year in Canada. ✤

Erin Lawrence is a Calgary TV producer, journalist, and freelance writer who loves food, technology and travel. Find her online at ErinLYYC.com or on Twitter & Instagram @ErinLYYC.



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city palate NEWSLETTER coming soon! We’re excited to announce the launch of our new email newsletter later this fall! Connect with City Palate online for fun culinary information, cooking tips and recipes, must-do upcoming events and much more.

Subscribe at citypalate.ca and you could WIN GREAT PRIZES FROM OUR WONDERFUL ADVERTISERS! Chef Robert Jewell, Double Zero, receives Alberta Pork’s check for winning the divine swine for our Pig & Pinot’s best dish made from pork provided by Spragg’s Meats. Chef Jewell turned his winnings over to Brown Bagging for Calgary Kids (BB4CK), a great group he’s been working with for a long time. L-R: City Palate’s Janet Henderson, who organized Pig & Pinot, Darcy Fitzgerald, executive director of Alberta Pork, chef Jewell and Taya Koshowski, executive director of BB4CK.

restaurant ramblings n Perched among striking wood rafters in the Granary Road Market, The Loft Lounge is now open! Take in the fun hustle of the market below while relaxing with a cold beer or glass of wine and something tasty – like a bison burger featuring house-made whisky barbecue mayonnaise on a brioche bun, vegetable focaccia fresh from The Loft Bakery, a game meat charcuterie platter, a Tuscan tomato salad or a bowl of steaming chicken broth with noodles, egg and slow roasted pork belly shavings! Kids will love the grilled cheese sandwich, chicken fingers and fries and traditional beef burger. Libations include craft beers, artisanal wines and worldly spirits. The Loft Kitchen also offers a quick-moving counter-service lunch stop that offers freshly crafted sandwiches, soups and salads built to order as well as pre-made and packaged to go. For details, visit theloftcalgary.ca n The Nash and Off Cut Bar invite you to check out its Off Cut Culture Club, a pop-up series that runs every Saturday until November 28 from 2-5 p.m., showcasing local vendors in artistic disciplines such as photography, fashion, jewellery design, fine art, ceramics, leatherwork, woodwork and more. Off Cut Culture Club serves as an extension of the successful Cheers to Inglewood summer campaign, which sold 456 cocktails in support of the Alex Youth Health Centre. Off Cut Culture Club will continue supporting the Alex through the sale of custom-made pins, which can be purchased by donation. More details at thenashyyc.com n Committed to using the best products without compromise and supporting local suppliers, NOtaBLE’s owner/chef Michael Noble and chef de cuisine Ryan Gilmour created hand-crafted new dishes with a blend of skill, technique and timeless tradition. Revitalizing all of its menus from brunch to dinner, NOtaBLE’s new menu offerings are sophisticated in taste yet comforting in their familiarity, including the likes of carrot cake French toast with Waltz chèvre icing, Ahi tuna poke with grilled plum avocado and lobster and shrimp bake. Along with the new menu, both NOtaBLE and The Nash have launched a Let’s Go Home loyalty program. Both restaurants are known for their popular happy chickens and are encouraging diners to take their



wood-fired rotisserie chickens home with them – plus, for every five happy chickens purchased and stamped on a Let’s Go Home loyalty card, customers will receive a complimentary happy chicken. n Celebrate the holidays at Carriage House Inn. Leave the cooking to them, take home a family feast for Christmas Eve or Christmas Day with your choice of turkey or prime rib. There’s also a served dinner on Christmas Eve, and a Dinner Buffet on Christmas Day. Celebrate the New Year at Carriage House’s Mystique NYE or New Year’s Day Brunch. Gift Cards available for purchase. Visit carriagehouse.net. For reservations: 403-253-1101 or restaurant@ carriagehouse.net n The Hotel Arts Group has appointed Quinn Staple as executive chef. Staple will bring a new, innovative energy to the group’s culinary offerings, combining his enthusiastic approach to dining with his diverse culinary background. We already know chef Quinn as a driving force behind Yellow Door Bistro. Chef Quinn will lead the teams at the group’s three distinguished restaurants – Raw Bar, Yellow Door Bistro and the newest addition, Oxbow at the Kensington Riverside Inn. Under his direction, the Hotel Arts team will continue to offer the exceptional culinary adventures that it’s known for. n The Highwood Dining Room at SAIT is accessible for the time being at a temporary entrance located on the southeast side of the John Ware building because of renovations taking place to the exterior of the building. Check the web site for the temporary entrance or call 403-284-8615. n We’d like to extend a heartfelt Welcome Back! to the fine folks at Escoba Bistro after a 14-month hiatus. This much-loved, longstanding Mediterranean bistro has reopened refreshed and ready to bring us once again the excellent fare, service and ambience they’ve justifiably become known for. n The Block Kitchen and Lounge invites you to its Little Black Dress Party to kick off the holiday season, November 16 at 6:30 p.m. It’s a dinner party, three courses, $50, with optional wine pairings, and a DJ. And… men are welcome and they can wear their holiday suit! Check the details at eatdrinkblock.com

n You’re invited to a winemaker’s dinner at Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, Culmina Estate with owner Don Triggs, is a five-course dinner with wines in the Fairview Dining Room, 7:30 reception, 8 p.m. dinner, $145. Phone 403-522-1817 for reservations or email cll.diningreservations@ fairmont.com and ask about overnight packages as well. n The Sukiyaki House invites you to the debut of Aki No Kaiseki with a “taste of autumn“ presented by chef Koji Kobayashi, professionally trained in kaiseki, the highest form of Japanese dining, October 21, $200. It will feature an eight-course menu along with Japanese sake, wine and tea pairings, prepared alongside with sake sommelier, Yasuhiro Washiyama. Seating is limited and reservations are essential at info@sukiyakihouse.com. n From 5-6 p.m., Tuesday to Thursday, Cotto, Italian Comfort Food, features a plate of pasta + glass of house wine for $16. Pasta dish changes from week to week, check the website cottoyyc.com for details. n Hayden Block Smoke & Whiskey hosts its second annual American Thanksgiving Dinner on Thursday, November 23. Offering guests an alternative to the traditional dinner by serving turkey Texas-style. Enjoy Smoked Turkey, southern inspired side dishes, and limited-edition Branberry BBQ sauce for $35. Hayden is also doing its charity Tangle Ridge whisky and house-made eggnog throughout December with $2 of the proceeds per beverage going to the Make a Wish Foundation. 1136 Kensington Rd. NW. Follow @haydenblockyyc for current events and specials. n Oxbow at Kensington Riverside Inn invites you to its Happy Hour, 4-6 p.m. for $5 drinks – Big Rock on tap, feature red and white wine and feature cocktail – to enjoy

along with half-price duck wings. And on Friday nights, half-price bottles of wine, excluding the reserve list. Specials through to December. n Brasserie Kensington launches a new menu on November 2 switching things up a little. Old time favourites will be there, but the new menu will be more vegetable-forward focused on plates you can share. High tea still takes place every Saturday and Sunday from 2:15-4 p.m. The Honey High Tea featuring dainties made with honey from the local Bees4Communities hive changes to Christmas High Tea on December 2. Reservations essential. #CrossTheRiver.

Fresh Fresh ideas ideas to to match match our our fresh fresh food. food.

n Velvet Café is a super popular cozy spot on 4th St. NW because chef Adam Cook makes a lot of mighty fine food. Lately he’s been working on his calzones that he sells like crazy because they’re freakin’ delicious. The great thing is he bakes them, and the bread he makes to wrap the fillings is some of the best you’ll eat. Thank you, chef Adam, we might have to eat more calzones. n At Teatro, chef Dave Bohati and his team have re-invented the tasting menu by highlighting seasonal ingredients with a playful approach. Available in addition to the regular à la carte menu, experience six carefully-executed courses with the option to pair each course with a sommelier-selected wine pairing. Whether you’re looking to enjoy a special dinner or wanting to explore a road less traveled, Teatro’s tasting menu delivers. Reservations 403-290-1012. And we say, good on ya, Teatro, having Dave Bohati in the kitchen! n Winebar Kensington celebrates its 9th birthday on Nov 20 celebrating with half-priced bottles of wine all night. Come celebrate! December 10 is the annual Ugly

We We can can truly truly do do because because 30 30 years years

say say that that we we are are good good at at what what we we of the people we work with of the people we work with & & of of Calgary Calgary food food experience. experience.

www.cateringinthecity.com www.cateringinthecity.com

403-243-7171 403-243-7171

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A fundraiser for the heart, mind and soul!

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Christmas Sweater Party with a DJ and Xmas “spirit” features. Bring a donation of food or money for the Veterans Food Bank. #CrossTheRiver. n Toscana Italian Grill invites you to book your Christmas party. Reservations of all sizes, there are three semi-private rooms that can accommodate small to large groups. Phone 403-255-1212 or email info@toscanagrill.ca for more information. n Hexagon Board Game Café offers Happy Hour specials such as $1 for all beer and $5 glasses of wine every day before 6 p.m. Harry Potter Halloween for the month of October, serving pumpkin beer and butterbeer floats. Follow @thehexcafe on Instagram for details. n The Smuggler’s group of restaurants: Smuggler’s brunch every Saturday and Sunday 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Let them help with your special gathering meal planning with prime rib to go, full and half roast meal packages available. Open Sesame’s Meatless Mondays invites you to enhance your stir-fry with a meatless add-on at no extra charge! Tofu for market, mushu wraps, lettuce cups, or naan bread. $7 Martini Mondays, Tuesday is $2 off Markets, Wednesday 30% off apps and $5 Tallboys, Thursday 1/2 price bottles and glasses of wine. Bolero’s holiday lunches are back, December 8, 15 and 22, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., $25 per person. Monday is Buck-A-Shuck and $7 glasses of prosecco, Tuesday is Bonus Cold Seafood Station, Wednesday is Bonus Dessert Station, Thursday is Wine Night with free corkage and 50% off wines, Friday is Sangria $6 glasses and $24 pitchers, Sunday is brunch, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., $5 Caesars and Mimosas. Tango Bistro: Monday is Buck a Shuck, $7 glasses of Blanquette and free corkage, Tuesday is Raw Bar Happy Hour and Green Hour – half price glasses of wine, $2 off all cocktails, $5 pints and bottles of beer – Wednesday is Wine Night, $7 6-oz. and $10 9-oz. glasses, Thursday is Beer Night, $5 draft and bottles, Raw Bar Happy Hour and Green Hour every day from 4:30 to 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. until close. n Alloy Restaurant turns 10 and serves a “birthday dinner” tasting menu from chef Rogelio on Novermber 1, as well as 50% off The wine list. Details and menu online at alloydining.com and reservations through Open Table. n In the heart of historic Cochrane, Fence & Post offers casual fine dining. In this beautiful space, partners Melanie Martzoukos and Chef Chris Hartman deliver modern Canadian cuisine with a focus on fresh, local and seasonal ingredients. Everything is made in-house. From the cured bacon and naturally fermented breads to the handmolded chocolates, it’s all made with love. With excellent service and a dynamic beverage list focused on small producers of hand-crafted products, it’s a place to go for a truly unique experience. Go to fenceandpost.ca to check out the latest menu or to book a party or event. Join the mailing list to find out about special wine dinners and other upcoming events.

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Alberta Farmers To Your Door

n River Café’s, executive chef Matthias Fong competes at Gold Metal Plates on November 2 – an extraordinary night celebrating Canadian excellence in culinary arts, sports and entertainment. Tickets and details: Goldmedalplates.com. For a pre-holiday escape, follow chef Matthias Fong south to Mexcio, November 30 to December 3, for the annual American Express Punta Mita Gourmet and Golf Classic. Packages are available for this exclusive gathering of North and South

American celebrity chefs, guest sommeliers and tequila and mezcal mixologists and the opportunity to play golf on world-class Jack Nicklaus courses with PGA players. Details at eventospuntamita.com. November at River Café is Friends & Familypriced tasting menu featuring the best of the local fall season. Dine on Sundays and bring your own wine at no charge! Check the website for menu and details, river-café.com. Spend more time with family and friends while hosting Christmas dinner. Enjoy a fully prepared ready-to-roast local, organic turkey from Winters Farm in a pan ready for the oven. Along with all the accompaniments, enjoy the warmth and smells of a full turkey dinner but let River do the work for you. Details at river-cafe.com. Book early, it always sells out. And a great present for friends and family is River Café gift cards that can be purchased online and sent via email. Easy-peasy and hugely appreciated! Spend a magical New Year’s Eve at River Café amidst the twinkling tree lights of Prince’s Island. Celebrate with a delicious seasonal tasting menu and wines paired from our award-winning cellar. Enjoy iceskating on the lagoon and watch the fireworks on the Centre St. Bridge at midnight. Reservations essential at 403-261-7670. n ‘Tis the season for celebrating and Deane House has a room for every occasion – private spaces of all sizes available for lunch, dinner and weekend brunch. Reserve at events@deanehouse.com. Check out the ongoing Deane House Winter Winemaker’s Dinner Series in the library for intimate evenings of food and drink. Dates and details at deanehouse.com. Cheers to corkage-free Sundays. Visit neighbouring Bricks Wine Co. or bring a bottle you’ve been saving, and the Deane team will pour it free of charge. Toast 2018 on New Year’s Eve with food, drink and frivolity in the verandah, library, dining room and bar. Reservations essential at deanehouse.com.

drinks docket n This is pretty exciting… Eau Claire Distillery’s excellent booze has made its launch in the U. S. and is now available in New York! Specifically the Parlour Gin and Prickly Pear EquineOx – both of which have won many prestigious industry awards – that can now be found in bars, restaurants and liquor stores. Good on ya, Eau Claire – great spirits, get them out there! n Hy’s Steakhouse is about much more than steak, if you don’t already know that. It’s about the good stuff that goes with steak, like a good drink! That’s why it’s called Hy’s Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar. These guys know a thing or two about how to put a good cocktail together with the carefully selected premium spirits they use. Check it out. n Getting the right gift can be a difficult job. But Eight Ounce Coffee is ready to supply you with all your caffeinated needs over the holiday season with the largest selection of coffee brewing equipment in Canada. To help you find the perfect gift, you can go and try before you buy with a coffee to help make those tough decisions. Also find tea and kitchenwares. Open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Visit eightouncecoffee.ca. n Vinestyles says this: “We do wine differently. Arranging our wine by taste profile, not country or region, empowers customers to shop for wines that please their palate. We want everyone to get to know his or her unique palate and personal taste profile! So one Saturday,

every month, we sample wines from each of our six signature styles – three whites and three reds, all for free! Join us from 2-5 p.m. on Saturday, November 25 and Saturday, December 16. Find us at 1127B Kensington Rd. NW. For a full list of our events please visit vinestyles.ca/events.“ n This is fun! A Calgary couple, Kelly and Rob Carpenter, have partnered with former Macallan master distiller, David Robertson, to open the first scotch whisky distillery to be established in Edinburgh in more than 90 years! Located in a 180-year-old historic railway building in the heart of the city, Holyrood Distillery aims to provide adventurous, flavour-driven whisky and a unique visitor experience. The Carpenters have been at the forefront of the scotch industry in Canada, founding the Canadian branch of The Scotch Malt Whisky Society in 2011. Holyrood is set to open in late 2018, check holyroodparkdistillery.com for more information. n Black Hills Estate Winery has been sold to Andrew Peller Limited. Glenn Fawcett, president of Black Hills, assures the world that everything we love about the wine and winery experiences – such as the Fall Harvest Party, Nota Bene Release Party and Midsummer Night’s Dream – will remain the same. And, the Andrew Peller wine people is a three-generation family-run winery with deep Canadian roots that stretch back to 1927. And good wines, too! For details visit blackhillswinery.com.

cooking classes n SAIT’s classes: Downtown Culinary Campus: East Coast, November 9; Knife Skills: Butchery, November 16; South Africa, November 22; Christmas Cookie Exchange, December 2/9; Desserts, December 6. Main Campus: Introduction to Cooking,

November 2-30; Assorted Buns, November 4; Baking Cakes, November 4; Curry, November 17; Artisan Bread, November 18; Introduction to Baking, November 18/25; Cooking with Cheese, November 28; Butchery for Hunters, December 9; Bean to Bar, December 9; Italian, December 12. The Tastemarket by SAIT: Going Gluten Free, November 22; Date Night at The Tastemarket, December 1; Cooking for Your Health, January 17-31, 2018. Visit culinarycampus.ca for details and more courses. n Ollia Macarons & Tea macaron baking classes: November 7, 14, 21, 28 and December 5, 6, 12, 19, 26. More information at byollia.com or phone 403-457-9775. n The Light Cellar: empowering educational experiences to enlighten culinary abilities and expand perceptions about food and nutrition. Learn the art and craft of Fermentation, Chocolate Making, Elixirs, Gluten-Free and more... The Light Cellar offers a variety of classes to help you upgrade your health and nutrition know-how in fun and easy ways. Check out the website for class listings, details and registration. thelightcellar.ca. n Cuisine et Château Hands-on Classes: Made in France, November 1/ 15; Twist on Sushi, November 2; Cakes! November 4/ 5; Cocina Mexicana, November 4; Knife Skills November 8; French Bistro, November 9, December 12; Simply Italian, November 10; Cooking Method Fundamentals, November 12; Spanish Tapas, November 16; Easy Thai, November 17, December 5; Artisan Bread Making, November 18 and 26; Indochine, November 21; Gluten-free Baking, November 22; Around the Mediterranean, November 23; Table for Two, November 24; Hors d’Oeuvres and Entertainment, December 2; Holiday Baking and Desserts, December 3;

Booking now for holiday parties!

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Holiday Brunch, December 10; Everything Chocolate, December 10. Special Events: Winemaker’s Dinner: Andeas Bender’s Wines of Germany November 18; Château Belingard’s Wines of Bergerac, November 28 and 29; 6th Annual French Christmas fourcourse dinner and wine pairings, December 21 and 22. For more information visit cuisineandchateau.com or call 403-764-COOK(2665) n The Cookbook Co. Cooks: November classes – Off the Menu of Anju; Girls’ Night Out Cocktails and Hors D’Oeuvres; A Night Out Couples Classes; A Chocolate Workshop with Cochu Chocolatier; Tagines, Stews from Morocco; Perfecting Paella; Christmas Baking; Vietnamese Cooking; Real Life Entertaining an All-In Menu, Cocktails to Dessert; Bridgette Bar and Metrovino Specialty Dinner; Holiday Hors D’Oeuvres, Make Ahead Appetizers for the Prepared Host and much more. Visit cookbookcooks.com for class dates and more classes, register at 403-265-6066, ext. 1.





NOV 7 | NOV 14 | NOV 21 | DEC 6 | DEC 13 | DEC 20 Enjoy a three-course movie-themed meal at the Selkirk Grille followed by the film in Gasoline Alley Museum. For tickets, menus, and movie selections visit HeritagePark.ca The Selkirk Grille is open Tuesday through Sunday for lunch and dinner. Reservations Recommended 403.268.8607 or HeritagePark.ca HeritageParkYYC

general stirrings n Knifewear Garage Sale: twice a year Kevin Kent, CEO and owner of Knifewear, travels to Japan on a buying frenzy. He buys up blacksmith’s experiments, knives from apprentice blacksmiths, prototypes, one-of-a-kind knives and cool stuff that he finds entertaining. These items, along with some retired sample knives and scratch/ dent items are thrown into the mix to make things even more interesting. Then, it’s all priced to move. The Garage Sale starts at 10 a.m. on November 6. Kent says there’s often a line of chefs and aficionados out front of each location by 9:30 that first day. While the sale runs for a week, many people want their pick of the full selection as many items are in limited quantities. A great opportunity for those looking for a beautiful Christmas gift for the chef/cook in their lives. This year the Garage Sale is November 6 to 12 at all locations and online at knifewear.com/garage-sale. n The Millarville Christmas Market opens its doors November 9-12. This market is renowned for its cool location, atmosphere and large selection of make it, bake it, grow it vendors from Alberta. Decorate your home with handmade, unique decorations, wreaths, stockings and ornaments or find one-of-a-kind gifts from many artists and crafts people for the impossible-to-buy-forperson on your list! The market is partnered with Okotoks Market Square, Olde Towne Okotoks and Travel Alberta in the annual Foothills Holiday Roadshow again. Visit foothillsroadshow.com for more information or to pre-purchase tickets for this event. n An easier way to shop! The Organic Box is now delivering weekly to households across Calgary and the Bow Valley. With thousands of Alberta-grown products available and new additions all the time, there has never been an easier way to support local and organic family-owned farms. There are several sizes of curated produce boxes that can be customized weekly to meet all of your grocery needs. Check it out at theorganicbox.ca. n Replenish. Renew. Restore. Swizzlesticks in Kensington is pleased about a makeover, but its popular services will remain the same, just in a brand new space that reflects the true essence of what it’s about – beauty and wellness, from the inside out. 1211 Kensington Rd NW. n Jessica Pecush Nutrition is a new Culinary & Holistic Nutrition consulting practice with a focus on digestive health. Jessica provides clients with comprehensive nutritional assessments and customized



dietary and lifestyle recommendations. Her Culinary Nutrition services consist of Personal Coaching, In-Home Cooking Courses, Grocery Store Tours, Kitchen Optimization, Small Group Workshops, Meal Planning and Corporate Lunch & Learn Sessions. Culinary experiences utilize whole food, plant-strong recipes and from-scratch cooking techniques. Learn more at jessicapecush.com. n The Cookbook Co. Cooks invites you to join one of its culinary escapes to France or Italy in 2018. France Food and Wine Tour, May 13-20, France Cycling Food and Wine Tour, May 21-28, Italy Food and Wine Tour, September 30-October 7, October 8-15. Details at cookbookcooks.com/escapes. AND, don’t forget that you can book your next corporate function or private event at The Cookbook Co. Cooks because kitchen parties are the best for team building, staff parties or special occasions. For details and to book, call Cathy Cuthbertson at 403-265-6066, ext. 3 or email cathy@cookbookcooks.com. n Wow! Is this cool or what! Yann Blanchard, head chef and owner of Yann Haute Patisserie, has received a highlycoveted distinction from the world’s most exclusive French pastry association, Relais Desserts Association de Haute Pâtisserie. Joining this association is the pastry equivalent of receiving Michelin Stars! Blanchard is the first and only Canadian chef to join this exclusive pastry association that includes the greatest names in the pastry world. He and his team have been creating great French pastry in Calgary since 2009. n With its sold-out 6th season successfully come and gone, Cuisine et Château is preparing for its 2018 all-inclusive travel tours to the heart of the Perigord region of rural France. Guided by a professional team of chefs, stay in a luxurious 18th century château and meet farmers, winemakers and purveyors, in a seven-day all-inclusive immersive gastronomic experience, that will forever change the way you think about food. The dates of the upcoming tours are already released; June 3-9 and June 10-16. You don’t want to miss this exciting opportunity to be a part of Cuisine et Château’s next chapter in the unspoiled heart of the French countryside. For more information visit cuisineandchateau.com or call 403-764-2665. n Cococo Chocolatiers launches its new award-winning Dill Fusion sharing tablette chocolate bar in-store. This sustainable white couverture chocolate tablette is infused with dill and sprinkled with blue cheese sea salt. Pair Dill Fusion charcuteriestyle with breads, crackers, mildly sweet meats, liver pâté or smoked fish. It’s perfect with mild cheese, pickles, salted nuts, grapes and dried fruit. Dill Fusion joins sister bars Rosemary Fusion (milk chocolate) and Oregano Fusion (dark chocolate). Visit any Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut location to try these unique chocolate charcuterie appetizer experiences! n Marriott International has 30 renowned hotel brands in 122 countries and is still growing. Opportunities abound! The next step in your career could lead to your greatest adventure. The Calgary Airport Marriott In-Terminal Hotel and Delta Hotels Calgary Airport In-Terminal is currently seeking a fun, lively, passionate, dynamic and engaging individual to join the Culinary team. If this is YOU, please visit careers.marriott.com to apply. CORRECTION The Sukiyaki House ad in the September/October issue had the wrong phone number by way of a 303 instead of a 403. The correct number is 403-263-3003.

Great Grilled Cheese Cook-Off Springbank Cheese in Willow Park hosted its first annual cook-off at Jerome’s Appliance Gallery on October 1st to raise money for Brown Bagging for Calgary Kids (BB4CK). There were two categories of competitors – five pro chefs and five amateur “chefs.” City Palate sales rep Liz Tompkins won first place in the amateurs and chef Daryl Kerr of Great Events Catering took first on the pro side. Congratulations! Ain’t nuthin’ like a great ooooozy grilled cheese sandwich, that’s for sure. The winners will get a year’s supply of cheese plus olive oil and a cheese board.

feeding people FLIPPIN’ FOR FILIPINO FOOD continued from page 15

7 Seas Seafood and Grill 7521 Macleod Tr. SW Adobo Experience 4303 - 17th Ave. SE 3745 Memorial Dr. SE 2770 Glenmore Tr. Angel’s Bakeshop and Restaurant 6800 Memorial Dr. SE

Here’s Liz’s winning recipe: THE TRIPLE "S" (Sweet, Sour & Smoky) Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Chopstix Filipino Restaurant 5315 - 17th Ave. SE

2 slices of your favourite sourdough bread 1 T. soft butter 1 T. bacon jam (make your own or use President’s Choice brand) 1 T . chipotle mayonnaise 4 or 5 all-dressed potato chips 4 slices lean capicola 1/3 c. grated cave-aged gruyère 1/3 c. grated aged Canadian cheddar

Lightly butter each slice of bread on one side, then flip over and spread one condiment on each slice of bread on the other side. Stack the remaining ingredients with the cheeses on the top and bottom of the other ingredients. Grill slowly so the cheese has time to melt and the bread doesn’t burn. Slice on an angle and serve with your fave salad.

Here’s where to find your Filipino food in Calgary:


10. HALO-HALO Hell, yeah. Purple yam features in all kinds of Filipino desserts and gives halo-halo (or haluhalo) a hilariously lurid look, especially when the preposterous purpleness is perched atop vanilla ice cream and surrounded by bright green squares of gulaman (agar jelly). There are often tapioca pearls and evaporated milk in the mix as well. Shards of fresh coconut, boiled sweetened kidney beans and shaved ice usually complete the picture. You’ll find this fantastically delicious dessert at many Filipino spots.

Lola’s Filipino Kitchen 255 - 28 St. SE Loriz Bakery & Convenience Store 8330 Macleod Tr. SE 2525 Bridlecrest Way SW Markjoel’s BBQ 3215 - 17th Ave. SE (inside Hong Kong Supermarket) Pacific Hut Restaurant and Bakeshop 3223 - 17th Ave. SE Pinoy Sari-Sari Store Bakery and Deli 3607 - 17th Ave. SE Kate Zimmerman happily explored Filipino restaurants in Calgary, Vancouver, Montreal and Ottawa for a Brandon University research project on Filipino Canadian culture.

25 Days of Dram Fine Whisky... are almost here! The Kensington Wine market Whisky advent calendar has become an annual Calgary tradition for true whisky lovers! Our exclusive Whisky Advent Calendar features a custom Glencairn glass, 24 50ml. whiskies and a 100 ml. Christmas Day bottling from the Scotch Malt Whisky Society.

neW tHis YeaR: while the calendar is mostly made up of single malt scotch whiskies, this year, for the FiRst time, we’ve included single malts from canada, england and the netherlands. Calendar includes a 10% discount card for any of the whiskies in the Calendar (except the Society whisky); subject to availability. Price is $375 + GST; a $150 deposit is required with the pre-order; balance charged when the calendar is ready for pickup.

1257 Kensington Road nW | KensingtonWinemaRKet.com | 403 283 8000 Find us on twitter and instagram: @KensingtonWm



8 quick ways with...

Chris Halpin


Maple syrup is a truly Canadian thing and a deep part of my personal history. So much so, that when I’m travelling, I am always shocked to hear people ask me what maple syrup tastes like. I’m happy to try and find words to fully describe it. And, I find myself feeling a little sorry for people who have never had maple syrup. By the way, Google the nutritional values of our beloved nectar and you will leave the honey for the bees! Spicy Maple Pecans Perfect snack, great on salads and wonderful for gifting. Preheat the oven to 300ºF. In a bowl put 1/2 c. maple syrup, 1/2 t. cayenne pepper, 1/2 t. allspice, 1/2 t. smoked paprika, 1 t. sumac, 1 t. salt and mix well. Then add 2 c. pecan halves and mix to coat. Spread evenly on a parchment-lined baking sheet and place in the oven. Remove and mix every 10 minutes until the pecans are lightly toasted and the glaze is no longer sticky, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to fully cool before serving or packaging. Makes 2 cups.

Maple Poached Eggs with Smoky Bacon and Pancakes

A T D A L H O U S I E S T A T I O N 403.286.5220 www.zestkitchenware.com

10AM - 5PM


N OV. 9 - 1 2 , 2 0 1 7





I have a lovely Tante Stella, who is an unbelievable cook. At some point in my history, my uncle thought it would be a fun “weekend farm” thing to have a sugar bush, which, for the grown-ups, was way more work than they imagined. But, as a kid, it was fun! Ma Tante, would do all sorts of cooking and treats for us kids. One thing she did was to poach eggs in half boiled maple syrup and serve them with smoky bacon and pancakes, and more maple syrup, of course. This is my homage. In a medium-size, deep pot, put 2 c. maple syrup and 1 c. water. Put it on medium heat and bring to a boil. While you’re waiting for this to happen, make the pancake batter and fry the bacon. In a large skillet, cook 8 smoky bacon rashers and set aside for later. To make the pancakes, in a small bowl put 1 c. flour, 1/2 t. baking powder, 1/2 t. baking soda and 1 T. sugar. Whisk together well. In a larger bowl, put 1 egg and 2 T. oil and beat until fully incorporated, then beat in 2 c. buttermilk. Stir in the flour mixture and don’t worry too much about some lumps – they will work their way out while cooking. Cook the pancakes in the bacon fat. When the syrup is boiling, add 4 eggs and poach to desired doneness. To serve, arrange pancakes on four plates, place the bacon on top of them, and then an egg. Add more syrup as needed. Serves 4.

Maple Mustard Roasted Green Beans and Cauliflower The maple syrup, toasted sesame and mustard work in a mysterious way with these vegetables to create a flavour so bright and savoury. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. In a bowl put 12 cauliflower florets and 3 handfuls of trimmed green beans, drizzle with 2 T. toasted sesame oil and toss to evenly coat. Arrange on a baking pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, remove from the oven and add 2 T. grainy mustard and 2 T. maple syrup, toss to evenly coat and return to the oven for another 5 minutes before serving. Serves 4.

Maple Chile Glazed Scallops Simple ingredients and fast, perfect for a quick appetizer or served on a bed of arugula as a “wow” starter course. In a small bowl add 1/4 c. maple syrup, 1 garlic clove minced, 1 t. fresh ginger grated, 1 t. chili flakes, mix well. Rinse and blot dry, 12 medium scallops, sprinkle each with some salt. Place a skillet over high heat and allow the pan to get very hot before adding 1/4 c. canola oil. While you are waiting for the pan to heat, arrange a handful of arugula onto four salad plates and set aside for later. Now add the scallops and sear for about a minute before turning over. Once you have turned the scallops, spoon some of the maple glaze over each. Then turn the scallops again and spoon the remainder of the glaze over the scallop and turn again. Remove from heat and place 3 scallops on top of the arugula and drizzle some of the glaze over all. Serves 4.

Maple Braised Kielbasa with Winter Veg Too many people think braising has to be an all-day event. Not so. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. In a shallow casserole oven dish, put 8 3-inch pieces of kielbasa sausage, 1 large red onion, diced, 4 peeled carrots and 2 celery stalks, cut into 1-inch pieces, 1/2 a small cabbage, cut into wedges and 4 small potatoes, quartered. Over top of this, pour 1 bottle of beer and 1/2 c. maple syrup. Mix to evenly coat, sprinkle with salt and braise in the oven, uncovered, for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven about halfway through to stir and adjust the salt. When the vegetables are tender, it's ready to eat. Serve with maple mustard on the side. Serves 4.

Maple Mustard So basic, yet so versatile. Great in sandwiches, as a dip, as a glaze or as an accompaniment for a braise, like the braised kielbasa. In a small bowl mix together 1/2 c. Dijon mustard, 2 T. maple syrup, 1/2 t. onion powder and 1/2 t. Sriracha hot sauce. This will keep for up to 6 months in your fridge.

Maple, Almond Chia Pudding I have always loved tapioca pudding, comfort food from my childhood. However, I have never really been interested in the investment of time required to prepare it. This is shockingly simple and super nutrient dense. I love it with strawberry jam, any time of the day. In a bowl put 2 c. unsweetened almond milk, 1/2 c. maple syrup, a pinch of ginger, stir to dissolve the syrup. Stir in 1/2 c. chia seeds and place in the fridge, stir 3 times over the next hour or so. Ready in 1 hour, but best if you let it sit overnight. Makes 3 cups.

Maple Brandy Milk

recipe photos by Chris Halpin

This has been a Christmas tradition for me for more than 20 years, instead of eggnog. In a blender put 2 c. whole milk, 1/2 c. brandy, 1 c. ice, 1/4 c. maple syrup and a pinch of nutmeg. Blend until frothy, pour into glasses and garnish with some freshly grated nutmeg. Serves 4.

Chris Halpin has been teaching Calgarians to make fast, fun urban food since 1997 and is the owner of Manna Catering Service. mannaonline.com



opening soon


Allan Shewchuk


I hate to be trapped in a routine. You know, those periods where you feel like you’re locked into the movie Groundhog Day, where you’re looping endlessly through identical cycles and your life is on autopilot. That’s one of the reasons I’m always planning a getaway, however short, about every four to six weeks – I don’t want to get stuck in a rut. But there are routines in my life that I enjoy and keep up religiously, whether at home or on the road. I must wake up and immediately drink a couple of litres of sparkling water, followed by two perfect cups of espresso. With my coffee, I read three newspapers online and then get my day started. Just before lunch, I pop a cork and have a glass of icy cold, fizzy prosecco, the perfect, inexpensive Italian sparkling wine. When my work day is done, I pour myself a glass or two of wine to lubricate my creative juices while I cook dinner. Often it’s another prosecco, and I’m always happy to have company at my kitchen counter to enjoy the bubbles, and, as my wife says in her usual malapropistic way, to “decompose” after a long day.



Small batch Craft Beer & Southern Barbecue

Given my daily habits, imagine my shock when, the other morning, I opened my laptop and read the headline, “Bad News Prosecco Lovers, Your Favourite Tipple Could Be Damaging Your Teeth.” I did a spit take with my espresso as I thought about all the money I’ve forked over to my dentist, now to have it all go up in smoke. According to the article in the Guardian, two British dentists had warned that prosecco had dangerously high sugar and acid content and that drinking it regularly caused rampant tooth decay. In addition, when the prosecco shot out of the glass flute into your mouth, the enamel on your front teeth would be destroyed, leaving a half-moon stain on your grill known as “prosecco smile.” I panicked at the thought of having to give up my happy drink and of now paying for my dentist’s grandchildren to go to university, having already funded all of his kids’ education. Luckily for me, the Italian prosecco producers also panicked about what this apparent medically backed claim would do to their sales. However, when they started to investigate the allegations, they found that there had been no empirical research done at all, and there was no scientific basis to declare a “prosecco smile” epidemic. The information had just come from a couple of dentists trying to drum up business for cosmetic procedures. As befits the Trump era, the whole thing was just fake news. But it had the effect of making me question whether my routine of water, coffee, computer screen-time and wine was good or bad for me. The result of my research was a fake news bonanza. In just two weeks of scouring media outlets, I read the following cavalcade of contradictory headlines and facts. Plenty of water was the secret to a long life. Hydration causes kidney failure and death. Coffee causes cancer. Coffee prevents cancer cells from developing. Computer time increases Alzheimers risk. Surfing the internet stops the onset of dementia. Wine consumption reduces life expectancy drastically. Drinking wine leads to a healthy cardiovascular system and prolongs mortality. What’s true? What’s fake? What’s a fella to do? I thought about my regimen long and hard, and, in the process, poured myself a prosecco. It brought on the rapid onset of happiness. I did some more research online and everything I read about happiness was good news. There appears to be no downside to happiness at all. Whole countries with high happiness quotients live longer than anyone else. Happiness doesn’t cause cancer. Happiness certainly doesn’t promote tooth decay – in fact, the whole point of being happy is that it makes you smile. Maybe those two charlatan dentists in England would get more business if they just told happy people they could give them a nicer smile rather than fibbing about the hazards of fizzy wine. So I’ve decided to keep up my routine and declare as fake any news that doesn’t endorse it. I’ll continue to pop my daily prosecco, which will make me happy, and therefore I shall live longer. If I’m wrong, you’ll find out by reading my obituary after my untimely demise. I’ll be the guy in the memorial photo with a half-moon stain on my smile. But it will be a big smile, and not a fake one. Allan Shewchuk is a lawyer, food writer and sought-after Italian food and wine guru. He currently has kitchens in both Calgary and Florence, Italy, but will drink wine pretty much anywhere.



SKIP THE MALL. Open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 9:00 am until 5:00 pm 1235 26 Ave SE, Calgary, AB T2G 1R7 crossroadsmarket.ca

Profile for City Palate

City Palate November December 2017  

The Flavour of Calgary's Scene - The Entertaining Issue

City Palate November December 2017  

The Flavour of Calgary's Scene - The Entertaining Issue


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