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8 quick ways with...

Chris Halpin

MAPLE SYRUP

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

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CITYPALATE.ca NOVEMBER DECEMBER 2017

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.

City Palate November December 2017  

The Flavour of Calgary's Scene - The Entertaining Issue