City Palate September October 2017

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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 harvest issue






MAPLE BOURBON SOUR Ice 1 1/2 oz bourbon 1 oz MONIN Maple Spice Syrup 1 1/2 oz fresh lemon juice Combine ingredients in a shaker in the order listed. Cap and shake vigorously. Pour into serving glass and garnish with a lemon twist. Visit us and select from the over 100 premium MONIN syrup flavours we stock. They’re great in cocktails too!







WE’RE THE TRUSTED SOURCE Celebrating 40 years of wellness We’re choosy about what we put on our shelves. We research everything we sell, tour our producers’ facilities and have our own, myCNF-Verified ingredients quality program. If it doesn’t meet our standards, we don’t sell it. 10TH AVENUE MARKET • CHINOOK STATION MARKET CROWFOOT MARKET • ONLINE MARKET




22 n

Recipes from our Great Canadian Harvest

Local chefs and foodies share their favourite harvest recipes

26 n

Welcome to Your New Skill Set!

Spruce up your knife skills to improve your confidence, precision and efficiency Patrick Dunn

30 n

The Power of the Pulse

No longer dismissed as dreary vegetarian fare, pulses are having a great big moment Kate Zimmerman

32 n

High School Culinary Programs Offer Many Tasty Benefits

Gwendolyn Richards

34 n

Kitchen Tech: Meet Your Personal Robot Chef

The Thermomix kitchen robot takes the guesswork out of gourmet Erin Lawrence

36 n

Gift Baskets from Heaven and Hell

Linda Kupecek


7 n word of mouth

Notable culinary happenings around town

9 n eat this

What to eat in September and October Ellen Kelly

10 n get this

Must have kitchen stuff Karen Anderson

12 n one ingredient

Cooking with bison Julie Van Rosendaal

16 n great finds

Lazy Loaf & Kettle and Annex Ale Project Regan Johnson

18 n feeding people

Learning to cook in Bulgaria Shelley Boettcher

20 n the sunday project

Smoked steelhead trout (or any fish) with Karen Ralph

38 n stockpot

Stirrings around Calgary

44 n 6 quick ways with...

Squash Chris Halpin

48 n back burner... shewchuk on simmer

Imprese Familiari (im-PRAY-zeh FAH-mill-YAR-ee)

That means we support family businesses, locally and across Canada, who make traditional products as good as those from the old country.

That’s over 300 classic delicacies made right here on our doorstep.

Just dying to party Allan Shewchuk

COVER ARTIST: Marlee Mayors is an art student at Algonquin College who won a competition to be on our cover.


Grocery. Bakery. Deli. CafĂŠ. EDMONTON Little Italy | Southside | West End CALGARY Willow Park SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017


city palate publisher/editor Kathy Richardier (

Offering a locally-inspired menu, featuring items that are meticulously handcrafted.

magazine design Carol Slezak, Yellow Brick Studios ( contributing editor Kate Zimmerman contributors Karen Anderson Shelley Boettcher Patrick Dunn Chris Halpin Regan Johnson Ellen Kelly Linda Kupecek Erin Lawrence Karen Ralph Gwendolyn Richards Allan Shewchuk Julie Van Rosendaal Kate Zimmerman

2008 Airport Road NE


contributing photographers Karen Anderson Shelley Boettcher Kathy Richardier


for advertising enquiries, please contact account manager Doug Proctor ( account executives Ellen Kelly ( Liz Tompkins ( Janet Henderson (

Celebrating Anejo is

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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. Editorial Enquiries: Please email

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word of mouth


gold medal plates coming down the highway Wowzadoodles! The lineup of chefs for Calgary’s Gold Medal Plates is almost too good to be true, and includes four previous Calgary medalists in this year’s lineup: Antonio Tardi, Calgary Winter Club; Blake Flann, BLAKE (Canmore); Darren MacLean, Shokunin (previous bronze and silver medals); Dave Bohati, Vintage Group (previous gold); David Spero, One18Empire; Jan Hansen, Hotel Arts; Jenny Kang, Bow Valley Ranche; John Michael MacNeil, The Beltliner (previous silver); Matthew Batey, The Teatro Group (previous gold); Matthias Fong, River Café. Gold Medal Plates takes place at the Telus Convention Centre November 2. Gold Medal Plates supports Canada’s Olympic Athletes.

pig & pinot’s divine swine went to… The very talented chef Robert Jewell at Double Zero Pizza who created an interesting and super-good combo plate of a pork trotter beignet with roasted onion and herb double cream, cider-braised cheeks with port jus, braised leeks, fresh peas and mint and… dessert! Always good – a chocolate peanut butter truffle with candied pork on top! There was a lot of really good food at P & P, and the judges had a tough time of it, but they did have fun eating good food and drinking good wine – wine provided by British Columbia’s Wynnwood Cellars. Thank you Wynnwood Cellars for your good wine.

confections from a great baker You may remember John Hanrahan’s delicious baked goodies (formerly the baker at Lina’s Italian Market) – we sure do! He went off to do his own thing – cookies and tarts, galettes, scones, macarons, jellies and women’s and men’s health breakfast cereals! Good on ya, John! Order his goodies off the web site, wholesale. He’s working on retail outlets, too, coming soon! John’s company, Confections by John, can be found, along with other worthies, on the web site

canada’s most imaginative bartender! Timo Salimaki, bartender at The Living Room, won the title of Canada’s Most Imaginative Bartender with his Mirepoix Experience at a competition in Toronto of 10 finalists from across Canada. Timo represented Canada at the global finals in the UK in August. Timo is the brother of chef Kai Salimaki and both were at The Block Kitchen and Lounge before Kai joined Ox Bar de Tapas and Timo joined The Living Room. They are both hugely talented.

take a crunch of this! Fraser Valley gourmet almond butter crunch – oh, yes! Bring it on, lots of it, we love the real things – chocolate and nuts and and buttery caramel, and, and, and... no artificial anything, and that’s a good thing, gluten-free too! You need some of this, too, get it at The Cookbook Co., Kre8tive Karma, H & W Produce and Cozy Cottage in Okotoks.

first date confections New chocolate flavours – coffee dates: latte and mocha. Created by Tatiana Straathof, First Date Confections are delish and pretty much good for you! Yay. Find them at Amaranth on 4th Street, Vitality Tap, Munch YYC – one of the stores at the new East Village Junction market – Raw Eatery and Market, Outside the Shape, and you can order online at

great chocolate wins international awards Calgary’s Cochu Chocolatier’s birth mother, Anne Sellmer, has won 12 medals in a prestigious international chocolate competition, also the biggest chocolate competition in the world, in London, the UK’s Academy of Chocolate Awards. And Sellmer’s chocolates showcase local producers, such as Eau Claire Distillery, Phil & Sebastian Coffee Roasters, Porter’s Tonic and Cultured Butter. Look for Cochu at The Cookbook Co. Cooks, Meez Cuisine, Eau Claire Distillery, the Inglewood Night Market, and in the fall, at Phil & Sebastian and Holt Renfrew. Well done, Anne!

our own certified master chef... yes! SAIT chef and professional cooking instructor, Michael Allemeier, has earned his Master Chef certification from the Canadian Culinary Institute, becoming only the third in Canada to receive the prestigious designation! The Certified Master Chef (CMC) program in Canada began in 2011 with only two other chefs successfully certified. The road to becoming a Certified Master Chef is long and arduous. Thirty hours a week for four years of intense study, assignments and exams, while continuing to teach, went into becoming a Master Chef, giving Allemeier the rare opportunity to be both student and instructor simultaneously. There are 11 components required for certification – seven academic portions to be graded and four kitchen exams held in Toronto at Humber College. In addition, chefs are tested on everything from garde manger and baking theory through to nutrition and food allergies to entrepreneurship, tourism and hospitality marketing. Allemeier also needed proficiency in blueprint software program AutoCAD in order to redesign a restaurant kitchen to meet food safety and menu demands. Good on ya Michael!

read these: Two great book launches coming up! Don’t miss the launch of the new Best of Bridge: Sunday Suppers cookbook from Julie Van Rosendaal, Elizabeth Chorney-Booth and Sue Duncan at The Cookbook Co. Cooks, September 24, 6:30-9 p.m. with samples of recipes from the book included and attendees will take home a copy of the book. Whether you want to prepare an elegant feast for a special occasion or need some simple ideas for meals that will entice your family back to good food, good conversation and laughter at the dinner table, these recipes celebrate what's on the table – and who's around it. Details at Be the first to get your copy of The Soup Sisters Family Cookbook, at the launch at Charbar, October 15, 1 p.m. Focused on family, it’s filled with great soup contributions from Soup Sisters, many well-known chefs, such as Nigella Lawson and Michael Smith, as well as “souper” kid creators who have contributed the likes of Dragon Soup, Cheeseburger Soup, Green Monster Soup and much more. And taste the soup shots from these tasty recipes. Fun! SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017




eat this

Ellen Kelly

WHAT TO EAT IN SEPTEMBER AND OCTOBER Illustrations by Eden Thompson

Summer is sweet, but all too fleeting. Fall brings us the opportunity to not only revel in the harvest season, but to think seriously of winter’s larder. The deep umami of wild and domestic mushrooms adds layers of flavour to fall stews, soups and sauces. And humble root vegetables like carrots, beets, parsnips and potatoes boldly come into their own as the weather cools. BEETS are closely related to Swiss chard and spinach, and even though the greens are as delicious and healthful as their leafy cousins, it’s the root that we’re usually after. Beets’ deep earthy flavour and the blood bath of the red varieties means adding them willy-nilly to everything is illadvised, but they shine on their own in borscht-style soups or simple old-fashioned pickles. A favourite is a beet salad: simply peel roasted beets and slice while still warm. Add lots of sliced sweet onion and toss in a vinaigrette made with good olive oil, cider vinegar, honey and just a touch of vanilla. Serve topped with crumbled feta or chèvre. The beets are lovely the next day, having almost pickled in the dressing.

Where would we be without the sweet rich common CARROT? As essential to basic cooking as celery and onions, carrots round out what we term mirepoix, the building blocks to any well made braise, stew, soup or stock. As necessary to fundamental cooking as carrots are, this parsley relative makes a sweet bright soup that can feed the kids or start a dinner party equally well. A friend in California shared this recipe with me years ago and I’ve been making it every year since, as soon as the larger sweet carrots and parsnips abound. Peel and coarsely chop 3 large carrots and 3 parsnips of equal size. Coarsely chop a medium sized onion and add, with the vegetables and 1-2 cloves of garlic, to about 6-8 cups of rich chicken or vegetable stock. Cook until the vegetables are very soft and remove from the heat. Mash the vegetables first with a potato masher and then purée with a hand-held blender. Add about a cup of white wine (if you’re feeding children, you can leave it out) and continue to cook for another 10-15 minutes. Finish with as much or as little heavy cream or crème fraîche as you like and then check seasoning; add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with a leafy herb such as fennel fronds, dill or even carrot greens, if they’re nice.

While many wild mushrooms like morels and chanterelles are available only in the spring, cultivated MUSHROOMS are available year round – there are about 300 cultivated varieties. Of course, we don’t see a huge selection in our supermarkets, but domestic white and brown cremini mushrooms, flavourful shiitakes, large portobellos and sweet oyster mushrooms can be found easily. Reconstituted dried porcini (or cèpes) give a simple mushroom soup a polished air; a whimsical garnish of tiny enoki mushrooms on an Asian noodle salad is sure to delight; and thin slices of shiitake caps sautéed in brown butter then added to nutty brown rice is sublime. Some people don’t digest raw mushrooms well, but white, cremini and the little alien-looking enoki mushrooms are exceptions. It is, however, a good rule of thumb to cook all wild mushrooms. Cooking tends to enhance the flavours anyway. For a unique fall salad, and when the white or cremini mushrooms are particularly firm and nice, clean them well, slice, and then toss with some finely diced hot pepper (jalapeño, serrano) in a simple lemon caper vinaigrette.


BUY: Look for beets with greens attached. They should be bright dark green and fresh looking. The roots should be relatively smooth and hard with a deep colour. Try to get them all of a size so they’ll take the same amount of time to cook. TIPS: Like carrots, beet greens draw moisture from the root, so cut off the greens before storing. Unwashed, beets will keep in the fridge for 3-4 weeks. To avoid leeching out a lot of the colour and goodness, add a little water to whole beets in a baking dish and cover with foil. Bake at 375°F. anywhere from 45 minutes to over an hour, depending on size. No need to peel beets beforehand, the skins slip off easily once they’re cooked. DID YOU KNOW? Not all beets are round, nor are they all red. Burpee developed a lovely golden yellow beet years ago and you can sometimes find the milder tasting candy cane-striped Chiogga in the fall markets. A boon to pickle makers is Cylindra, an elongated red root perfect for uniform slices.


BUY: Look for firm bright carrots that are smooth and unblemished; eschew any that are soft or discoloured. If the tops are still attached, they should be fresh looking and bright green. Cut off the tops before storing (see beets, above). TIPS: Don’t peel small new carrots, the skins are thin and actually contain much of the flavour. Leave about an inch of the stems; these are perfectly edible and provide a touch of whimsy and freshness when served. DID YOU KNOW? Early carrots were ungainly, large and purple, then predominately orange and now, not only purple, but red, yellow and white as well. Once only seen in farmers’ markets, one can now buy “rainbow” carrots in most supermarkets.


BUY: Avoid wet or slimy mushrooms, or any with black spots or other discolouration. Conversely, don’t bother with any that are shrivelled and dry. Mushrooms are quite perishable and should be handled carefully as they bruise easily. Use the breathable brown bags that are nearby. TIPS: Washing mushrooms right before using is quite all right if you pat them dry after, but often they just need to be gently brushed off. Unwashed, they’ll keep well enough for 3-4 days in the fridge. The stems of shiitakes are fibrous and not good to eat, but lovely added to stock – don’t throw them out. Peeling mushrooms is not necessary. DID YOU KNOW? Mushrooms are truly mysterious things. Some are hallucinogenic, some deadly poisonous, while others are delicious to eat. They are grown, picked and eaten all over the world. Rare mushrooms like truffles were much sought after in classical Greece and Rome, and the Chinese and Japanese have been growing shiitake mushrooms on rotting logs for thousands of years. Ellen Kelly is a chef and regular contributor to City Palate. SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017


get this mind your beeswax Toni Desrosiers invented Abeego natural food wrap in 2008. Concerned about the 15 billion dollars of food that ends up in Canada’s collective compost heap each year, Desrosiers’ beeswax impregnated cloth wrap mimics the peel or skin of foods by protecting them while still allowing them to breathe. Plastic wraps make people think food will last longer but instead they can cause food to sweat, suffocate and become slimy. Abeego requires only cold water and biodegradable soap for cleaning and can be reused for up to a year or longer. It also has a naturally occurring disinfectant. Less plastic is a bee-utiful idea that made Desrosiers a winner on Dragon’s Den. Check out for all the ways to keep your food alive longer. Abeego Beeswax Food Wrap, $19.95 Variety Pack, Chinook Honey, Okotoks

the grass is always greener… …on the other side of the fence. Now grass-fed animals have made it to those greener pastures and research is leading us full circle back to foods our grandparents ate. Not too long ago, butter was taboo while man-made margarine and trans-fats were touted as healthier. We all know how that ended. Grandma would be proud of Bessie and company. Recent studies show grass-fed (not grain-fed) cows have very friendly fats for human health. Eric Giesbrecht, owner of Meta4Foods, makes this tasty grass-fed ghee for sale at his store. I can vouch for the taste – grass fed definitely makes for a tasty bottle of ghee goodness. Grass-fed ghee, $14.95/400 g, Meta4Foods

ravioli that roam Nothing says welcome home when you’ve roamed on a cool fall day like a big bowl of comfort food. Try a local, made-in-Lethbridge take on Italian comfort food with this Let’s Pasta ravioli. It celebrates a few of the indigenous foods of our nation – buffalo (the original roamers) and blueberries. I like to marry the flavours with a quick herb-infused creamy sauce. Chop 2 T. herbs – sage, chives, parsley and tarragon. Combine with 1/2 c. crème fraîche, 1 t. lemon zest and a generous grind of black pepper. Stir in the cooked ravioli and plate with a topping of more lemon zest, pepper and herbs. Let’s Pasta Buffalo and Blueberry Ravioli, $9.99/500g, The Italian Store, Skyline Way, N.E.


Karen Anderson


jersey milk Not the chocolate bar, but the real deal from those doe-eyed soft brown cows. Jersey milk comes from Jersey cows that were originally from the British Channel Island of Jersey. They are famed for the higher fat content of their milk and for their docile nature. Alberta’s Rock Ridge Dairies’ Jersey Milk has a 5% milk fat content that they call the “ring of gold.”

Minimalist style. Maximum function.

You’ll see why if you bring 2 L. to a slow rolling boil (hint: little golden globules of fat float to the surface). Add 1 L. of buttermilk and stir until the curds and whey separate. Pour through a cheesecloth lined strainer. Gather the cheesecloth around the curds and set something heavy on top of them while still in the strainer for about 30 minutes. Voila! You’ve got the richest tasting paneer (Indian fresh cheese) you’ll ever eat. You’ll never buy paneer again. Rock Ridge Dairies 5% Jersey Milk, $6.79/2L, Blush Lane Organic Market

versatile vat This Thanksgiving you can save a lot of time by opting to deep-fry your turkey. This 30-quart fryer has a lifting basket and easy drainage tap. Devotees of this method swear by their juicy results. A neighbour takes his turkey fryer camping every Thanksgiving and cooks the bird this way no matter the weather. Vast and versatile, you can also fill this vat with water for a lobster boil or use it to make your own kettle chips. Slice 2 russet potatoes super thin. Place slices in ice cold water with 2 t. salt. Place 2 L. of sunflower oil in the fryer and heat to 350°F. Drain and dry the potatoes with paper towel. Cook in batches until golden. Remove to a paper-lined tray. Eat plain or sprinkle with your favourite barbecue rub or black pepper and lime zest. Like all chips, they taste like more.

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rolling hills Farm Basket Natural Foods Store is a good destination for food lovers. Located in Three Hills, it’s closer than you think. Take a cooler and stock up on its exclusively locally grown and locally made products. Then pick up a few treats and drive through the rolling hills of Kneehill County to picnic at Orkney Point atop Horseshoe Canyon near Drumheller. It’s one of Alberta’s most photographed sites. My favourite find in the store were these frozen, bake-at-home cinnamon rolls by Leah Harvey of nearby Mousse Cake Sally bakery. Leah’s pastry is more cake than bread and her cinnamon and brown sugar filling caramelizes perfectly. Her slogan is “adorably homemade.” Those are words that should get you rolling.


Mousse Cake Sally Cinnamon Rolls, $10.25/6, Farm Basket Natural Foods Store in Three Hills Karen Anderson is the owner of Alberta Food Tours.



one ingredient

Julie Van Rosendaal


Olson High Country Bison

Before European settlers arrived, an estimated 10 million bison roamed the Canadian prairies. By the end of the 19th century, their population had been reduced to less than 100, but recent conservation efforts are restoring bison populations, along with the native grassland that had, over the years, been altered for new agricultural crops. Bison was, of course, a staple of First Nations communities throughout Alberta – when we talk about indigenous cuisine, bison should be at the heart of the menu. Bison meat is lean, with about half the fat and cholesterol of beef, and is higher in iron. (In fact, most cuts of bison contain less fat than skinless chicken, turkey, or even halibut.) Because of its similarity to beef, people treat it the same way in the kitchen, which can dry it out – the general rule of thumb when cooking bison steaks and roasts is to reduce cooking time by about 30 percent, and always aim for medium-rare. Or go low and slow and make a rich bison stew or braise some short ribs or a pot roast. Head to a farmers’ market or butcher to find more unique cuts, like steaks and short ribs; they’ll be excited to introduce you to some new cuts, and advise you how to cook it. When shopping for bison, the individual cuts are identical to beef – tenderloin, striploin and so on – so they’re easy to identify. Many bison producers wind up grinding perfectly good but intimidating cuts into burgers and sausage, which home cooks find more approachable, so they’re more in demand.

burgers 12 SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017

recipe photos by Julie Van Rosendaal

Ground bison is an easy way to get your feet wet. It can be used just like beef in chili, pasta sauces and such, but if you come across other cuts, pick some up as an educational tool, as well as to support our local producers – as they often say, the best way to nurture the bison population is to eat bison.

Bison Saskatoon Meatballs Bison and saskatoons, or other berries, make a classic combination, and were the foundation for pemmican, a traditional First Nations staple. This mixture of dried meat, berries and fat was easy to store. Saskatoons (or blueberries, if you can’t find saskatoons) add moisture and a dose of nutrients, and you can simmer a few in the pan afterward for a jammy sort of sauce. (Increase the berries and syrup if you’d like them saucier.) Serve the meatballs as an appetizer or as dinner, along with roasted or mashed potatoes and a green salad. 1 lb. (450 g) ground bison 1-1/2 c. saskatoons or blueberries (fresh or frozen), roughly chopped salt and freshly ground black pepper canola oil, for cooking 2 T. maple syrup 1 t. chopped fresh rosemary

In a medium bowl, combine the ground bison and half the saskatoons or blueberries. Season with salt and pepper and shape into meatballs, any size you like. Set a heavy skillet over medium-high heat, add a drizzle of oil and cook the meatballs, rolling them around in the pan until they’re golden all over. Cover and cook for a few more minutes, until cooked through. Transfer to a plate and add the berries to the pan along with the maple syrup and rosemary; cook, stirring to loosen any browned bits in the bottom of the pan, until the berries break down into a thick, jammy sauce. Return the meatballs to the pan and roll them around in the sauce to coat. Serves 4, or more as an appetizer.

Bison Chili Chili is the perfect vehicle for bison – add some crumbled bison sausage to the mix too, to spice things up a bit. canola oil, for cooking 1 large onion, peeled and chopped 2-3 garlic cloves, crushed 1 jalapeño chile, seeded and finely chopped 1 lb. ground bison 2-4 T. chili powder 1 T. cocoa 2 t. cumin 1 19-oz. (540 mL) can diced tomatoes, undrained 1-2 19 oz. (540 mL) can(s) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained 1 c. salsa salt and pepper to taste

Grilled Bison Steaks Bison steaks are as simple to cook as beef steaks; you just have to treat them a little more gently. bison steaks, such as striploin or T-bone, no more than an inch thick canola oil salt

Preheat your grill to high on one side, and keep the other low or off. Bring the steaks to room temperature and rub them on both sides with a little oil. Sprinkle with salt. Toss the steaks on the high side of the grill and cook for 2 minutes, then flip and cook for another 2 minutes. Transfer to the cool side of the grill and cook for another 4 minutes. Let rest for a few minutes before slicing. Serves as many as you like.

Heat the oil in a large pot set over medium-high heat. Sauté the onions in it for a few minutes, until they soften. Add the garlic and jalapeño and cook for another minute. Add the bison and cook, stirring and breaking up any lumps, until it’s no longer pink. Add the chili powder, cocoa and cumin and cook for another minute. Add the tomatoes, beans and salsa and bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about an hour. Keep it covered if it’s thick enough for your taste – if it seems thin, leave the lid off so that the excess liquid can evaporate. Season with salt and pepper if it needs it. Serve hot, topped with sour cream and grated cheese, or cool it down and refrigerate it for a day or two; reheat over low heat on the stovetop. Serves 8-10.

lunch, dinner, weekend b runch H a p py H o u r D a i ly

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 R e s ta u r a n t s L i s t 8 0 6 - 9 t h Av e n u e S E

@ d e a n e h o us e y yc continued on page 14 SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017


one ingredient


continued from page 13

Roast Bison If you can find a bison rump, inside round or sirloin tip, it’s worth picking up to roast – it will cook more quickly than a beef roast. Some bison ranchers advise salting the meat after it’s cooked, but I’ve had success both salting before and after. 2-3 lbs. (1 to 1-1/2 kg) bison roast 2 T. canola or olive oil 2 garlic cloves, crushed 1 T. finely chopped rosemary freshly ground black pepper salt

Preheat the oven to 500°F. In a small dish, stir together the oil, garlic and rosemary and rub all over the surface of the roast; sprinkle with pepper. Place in a roasting pan and cook for 10-15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 275°F and cook for about an hour, or until the internal temperature reaches 140-145°F. Sprinkle with salt, tent loosely with foil and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing thinly across the grain. Serves 6.

Julie Van Rosendaal is a cookbook author and blogs at

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FO O D & DR I N K Britannia Wine Merchants Suzette Britannia Starbucks Sunterra Market Village Ice Cream SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017



great finds


Lazy Loaf & Kettle Café and Bakery isn’t just a great find, it’s a hidden classic. Certainly, the locals in Parkdale know all about the 23-year-old establishment, as many of them are regular patrons – in for a cup of coffee, a bowl of soup, a sandwich on bread baked daily, or a delicious sweet. But for the downtown dwellers who have yet to discover this treasure just a short jaunt from city centre, you’re in for a treat. Helen and Michel Labonté began their business out of their home in 1989, and migrated to Lazy Loaf’s brick and mortar location in 1994. It was a change in career for both of them. Helen, a dental hygienist, and Michel, a welder and salesman, had no previous restaurant experience, just a dream, and a lot of determination, and maybe just a little bit of a knack for it. “I’ve been spoiled,” says Andrea Proctor, Helen and Michel’s daughter. “My dad’s a really good cook – his food is way better than any restaurant I’ve been to.” Andrea also remembers her mom’s baking from a very young age, including the bread, baked in a big black kettle, from which Lazy Loaf and Kettle derived its name. As a child, Andrea suffered from food allergies, which led avid baker Helen to craft recipes for breads and cookies that were egg- and dairy-free, like the signature kettle bread that remains on the menu today.

Knives that are made of more

Though Helen and Michel still own Lazy Loaf, Andrea and her husband, Matthew Proctor, now oversee daily operations – along with their two young daughters, Ava and Audrey. It is very much a family business, past and present, as there are many family recipe things on the menu. Andrea’s favourite? “The smoked meat sandwich,” she says, first, and then dithers: “The chocolate explosion, the carrot cake, the banana bread…” All beloved and familiar to her over the 14+ years she’s worked at Lazy Loaf – a hazard of having restaurateur parents. With years of tradition behind them and a dedicated base of regulars, Andrea and Matthew are still striving to keep Lazy Loaf current. In keeping with the recent trend, Lazy Loaf has introduced a tapas-style menu of shared plates, featuring a variety of bruschettas and dips served with their fresh-baked bread. The growing list of wine and beer offerings, along with free wifi after 4 p.m., means Lazy Loaf isn’t only a place to come for breakfast and lunch. The next addition? Craft cocktails, says Matthew. The space is extremely versatile – family-friendly, on-the-go, but also perfect for coffee-dates and wine-dates alike. The catering side of the business has also been expanding rapidly, and with good reason, as the breakfast and lunch spreads feature the same delicious kettle bread the café is known for. Hot, family-style entrées like the lasagna (vegetarian, chicken or traditional) serve groups of 12 to 18, based on the same delicious family recipes that have been pleasing Parkview for years. Conveniently, orders can be placed online. Whatever the time of day, or the occasion, Lazy Loaf & Kettle demands a visit to check out the iconic mural on the exterior, and to find a new favourite of your own, like the BLT that’s one of the best you’ll ever have. Lazy Loaf & Kettle, 8 Parkdale Crescent NW, 403-270-7810


Regan Johnson


Annex Ale Project’s Erica O’Gorman and Andrew Bullied are a rare breed – which is to say, native Calgarians. But though they hail from Cowtown, they first met in Nova Scotia while attending Saint Francis Xavier University. Of the two of them, it was Bullied’s interest in homebrewing beer and wine that set them on their eventual path towards their own microbrewery. After university, Bullied made the jump from hobbyist to professional with a stint at Niagara College’s brew school, before returning to Calgary with O’Gorman in 2010 to pursue a hands-on, experience-oriented education at Village Brewery. Now, Bullied and O’Gorman have the digs to brew whatever they like, after overcoming the obstacles of finding a reasonable location, a landlord willing to rent to a microbrewer, and the inherent investment of acquiring equipment. The taps at Annex feature two core brews – the XPA (extra pale ale) Metes and Bounds, and the North American bitter, Bitter Division – and four rotating seasonals. It takes three weeks to brew an ale; lagers take a bit longer. Bullied says they crack into something new almost once a week, and that it’s important to him to serve up beer that is as fresh as possible, particularly when his aim is to make “beers that are a bit more challenging” to the palate. “We want to help bring Alberta to bear in terms of the brewing culture in the Pacific Northwest,” Bullied says. “It’s about beer that makes people sit up and pay attention.”

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By contrast to the short gestation of its traditional brews, Annex’s non-alcoholic root beer in its nostalgic stub bottle took a year and 42 batches to develop. “It was the hardest thing I’ve ever made,” Bullied says, and an entirely different process from actual beer brewing. The botanical root beer brew, with herbacious, potent, all-natural ingredients like sassafras and wintergreen, took a lot of tweaking before Bullied was happy with the balance of flavours. Now, it’s available for purchase not only at the brewery itself, but around town, and features on the menu at Village Ice Cream in the form of an all-locally-made root beer float. But perhaps Annex brews are best sampled in the Manchester location, with its wall of windows and garage door that opens to let in the air. The interior is entirely custom, with pieces like the stylish and entirely moveable timber-frame bar designed by Calgary’s own DIRTT Environmental Solutions. The current list of beer on tap is displayed via projector on the blank wall above the bar for easy menu changes – and speaking of menus, Bullied and O’Gorman have plans for the tiny but fully-functional commercial kitchen in the back, with hopes of launching a food service on Sundays. As for the name? In part, Annex harkens back to a gathering place, like the annex space at Saint Francis Xavier where students congregate – but Bullied and O’Gorman have surely annexed a slice of the beer culture in Alberta, too, with their delicious, conversation-starting brews.

S& KET S AT C I T SE om PAS st.c


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Annex Ale Project, 4323 - 1 St. SE, 403-475-4492 Regan Johnson works at The Cookbook Co. Cooks.



feeding people

Shelley Boettcher


136 2nd Street SW

Warm Hospitality, Brazilian Style

Outside a house in a tiny Bulgarian village, a rosy-cheeked man smiled as he held out a tray of tiny glasses filled with a pale yellow liquid. “Welcome,” he said. “Try some. It’s good, made from our own peaches.” I threw back a shot of the rakiya. The fiery homemade brandy instantly brightened my morning and perhaps explained the pink in his cheeks. Then we filed into the home, taking seats around the kitchen. We were in Bulgaria as part of a trip with Viking River Cruises. Starting in Hungary, we slowly travelled along the Danube River to Bucharest and Romania, with stops in Croatia and Serbia, too. From day one, the trip was a food-lover’s dream. Every night, on the boat, we enjoyed never-ending wines, gourmet meals and interesting conversations about upcoming stops. Every day, as the boat docked, we toured the attractions and enjoyed local wines and spirits, meats, cakes and coffee. Taking advantage of the optional visits – ranging from artists’ colony tours to ancient castles – I signed up for a morning cooking class offered during our stay in Ruse, Bulgaria. We’d take a bus to a nearby village where a renowned home cook would teach us, in English, how to make classic Bulgarian dishes. As the luxury coach drove out of town, the Soviet-style factories on the edge of the city gave way to bucolic green hills. Goats and sheep grazed, while roses tumbled skyward in almost every yard, including the one where we stopped. Once in the house, we settled down to make Bulgarian specialties: the country’s famous homemade yogurt and banitsa, a layered dish made with phyllo pastry and feta. Hands washed. Aprons on.The yogurt was easy. Basically, just warm some milk in a pot. Stir in starter, or a dollop of leftover yogurt from your last batch. Wrap in a tea towel and let it sit on your kitchen counter, working its magic. And the banitsa? The list of ingredients started off pretty tame: phyllo pastry, feta, eggs and oil. But then Ramona, our friendly host and instructor, pulled out a bottle of acid-yellow-hued soda, a favourite, she assured us, amongst Bulgarian kids. She poured us all a taste – imagine Sprite, but 100 times sweeter – and then splashed half a tea cup of it across her dish, before popping it in the oven. My tastebuds still reeling from the sugar shock, I knew I wasn’t the only skeptical face in the crowd.

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A short time later, however, she handed out slices, still warm from the oven and fragrant with the scent of dough and cheese. As I bit into mine, I had almost forgotten the soda. I just knew I wanted to know more about what I was eating. Banitsa is a traditional Bulgarian pastry often served at Christmas and on New Year’s Eve. Like, say, chocolate chip cookies or chili in North America, every Bulgarian family has its own take on the classic dish. Some prefer it like a dessert, with pumpkin, cinnamon and walnuts in the mix. Others make it savoury, with minced meats and onion, or spinach or nettles. A forgiving recipe, it can be adapted, really, to whatever you have in your kitchen. My kind of food, I thought, as I tucked the recipe carefully into my bag. I also bought a small plastic pop bottle of the rakiya. Its label – a simple photocopied sheet – lists the ingredients (peaches, sugar) and the place of origin, one “General Marinov’s Village.” Named after a hero during the Serbo-Bulgarian War in the 1880s, it has a population of about 146, I find out later. Just a handful of streets and people. The bottle makes it home safely, but it doesn’t taste the same in my Canadian kitchen. And I haven’t found that sweet soda here in Calgary – nor have I looked for it. The dish is as adaptable as we’ve been promised. Banitsa, it turns out, transcends borders, a delicious reminder of a fun morning in a faraway place.


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Ramona’s Bulgarian Banitsa Ramona makes myriad variations of this dish – she sometimes adds cubed pumpkin or apple, plus cinnamon, sugar and walnuts instead of the cheese. She also sometimes makes it with spinach, eggs and cheese, too. In fact, there are at least a thousand variations, since every home cook has his or her version. Ramona also added a bit of soda, a very sweet Bulgarian pop, and, when she’s in North America, she uses Sprite or 7-Up. I found that the recipe was far too soupy here with the addition of the soda, so I’ve left it out – and, weirdly, it pretty much tastes the same. Either way, it’s a very rich dish; a tiny slice goes a long way. 1 package of phyllo pastry, thawed 400 g. feta cheese, drained and crumbled 6 eggs 1/2 t. baking soda 1/2 cup plain yogurt (no gelatin added)

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a baking pan with some of the melted butter. (I use a deep Pyrex pie plate, roughly 9” across the top and 2” high). Crumble the cheese into a big bowl and add the eggs. Stir until the yolks are broken. Add the baking soda to the yogurt and stir, then add to the egg-cheese mixture and stir. Using a pastry brush, brush the melted butter onto the pan. Place three sheets of phyllo over the bottom of the pan. Spread a thin layer – about 1/2” deep, about 1 c. of the egg mixture – on top. Place two or three more sheets of phyllo on top, and continue to layer, just like making lasagna, until the pan is filled. Top with three layers of phyllo and brush lightly with melted butter. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, or until the dish is golden-brown and the cheese has melted. Serve warm and refrigerate the leftovers. Serves about 8.

1/4 c. melted butter

Shelley Boettcher is a Calgary-based food, wine and travel writer. Find her on Twitter @shelley_wine and on Instagram @shelleyboettcher. She also blogs at SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017


the sunday project

with Karen Ralph


I hadn’t gone to Surplus Herby’s in Vernon, B.C., to buy discounted jars of BBQ sauce or choose from the impressive selection of fishing rods, lures, camping gear and hunting knives. I was on a mission to find an inexpensive, good quality fish and meat smoker. My father-in-law, an avid outdoorsman and bird-dog trainer, said that I should check out Herby’s, it would have what I was looking for. He was right. Sandwiched between jars of pickles and stacks of scented candles, the Big Chief and Little Chief front-loading electric smokers gleamed under the florescent light. The Big Chief was only $75 and included all of this: five easy-slide chrome-plated grills, electric cord, drip pan and wood chip pan, a bag of Smokehouse alder wood chips, a recipe booklet and complete operating instructions. The smoker – 24-1/2”H x 18”W x 12”D – smokes up to 50 pounds of meat or fish. The construction is durable embossed aluminum that’s lightweight, easy to transport and easy to store. It plugs into a standard household outlet. This was exactly what I’d been looking for and if I‘d had any doubts, a couple of Herby regulars, examining fishing rods, nodded approvingly at my choice and suggested throwing the recipe book away. My father-in-law gave me five lake trout that he had caught and froze in milk cartons, as well as his brine recipe. I was set.

the ultimate in refined living

As soon as as we got home, I thawed out a couple of the smaller fish and brined them for 24 hours in a mix of kosher salt, brown sugar, lemon juice and crushed garlic. The next day, I rinsed the brine off, patted them dry and put them in the fridge so that a film called the pellicle could form on the flesh surface. I soaked three cups of the wood chips in water for about 20 minutes, drained them and put them into the wood chip pan. Then I plugged in the smoker, put the pan on the element, checked for the pellicle, put the fish on the grill and slid the door shut. Following the recipe book, it said to smoke the fish for six hours. It seemed excessive, but I kept adding chips. Six hours later we had an inedible, over-smoked, burnt fish – a waste of food and time.

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Luckily there were three more fish and, learning from my mistakes, I threw out the recipe book and the next batch was fine. Two pans of wood chips and two hours of smoking resulted in the perfect smoked fish. Since then, I’ve experimented with brines, using Sauternes (a sweet white wine made with noble rot-affected sémillon grapes from Bordeaux) for sweetness and vibrant lift, beet juice for colouring, various spices and herbs and maple syrup or honey glazes. After you’ve successfully made your own candysmoked salmon, there is no going back. The Big Chief isn’t just for fish, you can smoke meat, cheese, vegetables and I’ve even tried smoking salt, but fish is what I return to time and time again. Earth’s Finest wood chips are excellent and can be found at Canadian Tire and anywhere that sells barbecues.

Smoked Steelhead Trout, (or fish of your choice) Steelhead trout filets: Brines will vary but this is my tried and true: 1 c. kosher salt 1 c. brown sugar 2 cloves smashed garlic 1 thumb ginger, grated juice of one lemon

You can adjust ingredient amounts according to the size of your fish and add fresh herbs, spices or more lemon if desired. Smoking wood chips – maple, alder or applewood are very good for fish. Hickory and mesquite are better for red meat. Use a glass container for brining. Combine all ingredients and rub them into the fish completely coating it. This brine is excellent on salmon, Arctic char, pickerel, trout, golden trout, steelhead trout and oysters. Put the container of brining fish – flesh down – in the fridge, and leave for about 24 hours. Remove from fridge, rinse off brine, pat dry and put fish back in fridge, flesh side up, for about an hour so the pellicle – a thin film of protein membranes on the skin’s surface – will form. The pellicle helps the smoke stick to the flesh, giving a good smokey flavour. While the pellicle is forming, heat the smoker to about 225°F, soak your chips in water for the last 20 minutes, drain off the water, place wet chips in wood chip pan and put it on the element. Place your fish on the grill, flesh side up if you don’t want grill marks, down if they don’t bother you, and slide the door shut. Check on the smoking process about once an hour, adding more wet chips if needed. When the fish have reached the desired level of dryness and smokiness, remove them from the smoker and let cool. They can now be frozen for later use or kept in the fridge and eaten within a week. The Big Chief can be ordered online for far more than I paid at Surplus Herby’s, so this could be your excuse for a road trip to Vernon. It’s also available locally at Canadian Tire and Walmart stores. Remember to use the Big Chief in a well ventilated area, on a hard, non-flammable surface because I know for a fact that it will scorch your wood deck. Happy smoking!

1. The smoker

2. Steelhead trout in brine

3. Steelhead trout in brine for 24 hours

4. Rinsing off brine

6. Smoking wood chips

5. Patting fish dry

7. Smoking wood chips soaking in water

8. Fish in smoker

9. Smoked fish, after 2 hours – perfect balance of smoke and moisture Karen Ralph is a regular City Palate contributor, back-yard smoking enthusiast and SCOBY farmer.

bio needed SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017


We all know Canada is a great agriculture country, and in the fall that means harvest. In this issue, we always celebrate the harvest with recipes from our local chefs and foodies. This year we celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday along with all the good harvest vegetables – squash is the main theme!

Happy Birthday, Canada, and thank you for feeding us so well!



J.P. Pedhirney Bridgette Bar

Roasted Yams with Garlic Labneh, Pumpkin Seed Za’tar and Charred Green Onion 2 c. thick Greek yogurt 1 T. roasted garlic purée sea salt 1 c. roasted pumpkin seeds 2 T. sumac 2 large yams 2 T. butter 1 T. vegetable oil 3 green onions cut into 2” strips fresh lime juice for an extra kick!

For the labneh, combine the yogurt and garlic purée in a mixing bowl and stir until fully combined. Season lightly with a pinch of sea salt. Set aside in the refrigerator. For the pumpkin seed za’tar, roughly chop the pumpkin seeds. Mix together with the sumac and set aside. Leaving the skins on, cut the raw yams into wedges roughly 3-4 inches long and 1-2 inches wide. In a large non-stick pan melt the butter with the vegetable oil. Once the butter begins to lightly foam, add the yams. Cook the yams on medium heat for roughly 3 to 4 minutes on each side, using a spatula to rotate the yam wedges so they do not burn. Use a fork and poke the yams to check their doneness, there should be no resistance and the yams should feel soft. Add the green onions and cook for 1 minute. Once cooked gently, season them with sea salt. Spoon the labaneh on a large serving dish, spreading it around. Next place the yams over the Labneh and finish with the Pumpkin Seed Za’tar. Squeeze fresh lime juice over the yams for an extra kick! Serves 4-6.


Ben Mills Bonterra Trattoria, Posto Pizzeria

Mike Scarcelli Plowshare Artisan Diner

Sugar Pumpkin Pierogies These will be on Posto’s menu in the fall – go eat some!

Braised Short Ribs, Roasted Squash, Barley Risotto


Braised Short Ribs:

2 sugar pumpkins roasted until soft with salt, pepper and olive oil

These are best braised overnight.

1-1/2 c. finely grated cheddar cheese

2 carrots

2 T. honey

3 onions

1 t. finely chopped fresh sage

1 celery stalk

1/4 t. cinnamon

canola oil

pinch allspice

1 litre red wine

pinch ground ginger

fresh herbs (thyme, rosemary, sage)

1 c. raw quinoa

salt and pepper to taste

2 bay leaves

salt to taste

Slice the pumpkins in half crosswise, scoop out the pulp and seeds to roast them. Once the pumpkins have cooled down, scoop the flesh off the skin and mash it, then mix all ingredients together.

water to cover short ribs

Jenny Kang Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant

Buddha Bowls

(Maple Syrup Roasted Vegetable and Quinoa Salad)

1 lemon, juiced 3 T. grapeseed oil 1 kg. butternut squash, cut into 1/4” cubes 3 medium beets, cut into 1/4” cubes 1/2 head cauliflower, broken into small florets salt to taste 3 T. olive oil 600 g. double-smoked bacon 3 stalks kale 200 ml. plain Greek yogurt 300 ml. maple syrup 1 t. salt or to taste

Preheat the oven to 380°F. Rinse and drain the quinoa. Place the quinoa in a medium pot with 2 cups of water, then bring it to a boil. Turn it down to simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir the quinoa with a fork to fluff it. Season with salt to taste, and add half the lemon juice and grape seed oil. Season the squash, beets and cauliflower with salt, 200 ml. maple syrup and olive oil. Place them on a baking tray and roast in the oven for approximately 20 minutes. Once the vegetables start browning, remove them from the oven. While the vegetables are roasting, cut the double-smoked bacon into lardons and pan-fry them until golden brown.

Dough: 4 c. sour cream 4 c. all-purpose flour 2 T. salt

Gently mix by hand and let sit 24 hours in the fridge before rolling for the pierogies. Roll the dough on a floured surface and cut circles using a round ring mold 3 inches in diameter, or use a coffee mug or pint glass. Place a spoonful of the filling in the centre of each circle. Lightly brush egg wash on the dough around the filling and fold over, pinching the edges firmly together to seal well. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and drop the pierogies in and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, or until they float. Remove them and toss them in the brown butter, recipe below. We also like to add dried cranberries. If you prefer, you can just give them a quick fry in a saucepan. Makes 30 to 40 pierogies depending on the size you cut them. Leftovers freeze well. Brown butter to toss the pierogies in: 1 lb. butter 1/4 of an orange 1 star anise 1/2 stick cinnamon

Clean the kale and remove the stems. Rip the kale leaves into small bite size. Add the remaining maple syrup to the Greek yogurt along with the remaining lemon juice, mix well and season to taste.

5 peppercorns

Combine all cooked ingredients into individual serving bowls, add the kale on top. Serve at room temp, hot or cold with the yogurt drizzled overtop. Serves 6.

Simmer all ingredients on low heat for 1 hour or until the butter turns a nice amber colour and the house smells like Christmas. Toss the pierogies in the butter until well coated, then serve.

1 bay leaf 5 coriander seeds 3 sage stems

3 lbs. beef short ribs

salt and pepper to taste

Roasted Winter Squash: 1 acorn squash 1 butternut squash 1 kabocha squash

Barley Risotto: 2 litres beef stock 100 g. pearl barley 1/2 lb. butter

Short Ribs: Preheat the oven to 250°F. Cut the carrots, onions and celery into large dice and place in a roasting pan. Lightly salt and pepper the short ribs. Put a little bit of oil into a cast-iron pan on medium heat and let it get hot. Once hot, sear all sides of the short ribs, about 2 minutes each side. Once seared, place the ribs in the roasting pan on top of the vegetables. Use a bit of the red wine to deglaze the pan and add to the roasting pan. Take a couple sprigs of rosemary, thyme, and sage and place in the roasting pan. Add the rest of the wine and add water to cover half of the ribs. Place in the oven for 12-15 hours – best to do overnight. Once the ribs come out of the oven remove the short ribs and let them cool. Strain the jus and reduce it by half. Put the short ribs back in the jus to keep warm until you serve. Serves 6. Roasted Squash: Preheat oven to 375°F. Peel the squash and take the seeds out. Once cleaned, cut them all into medium dice. Drizzle with vegetable oil, season with salt and pepper and put in a baking pan. Roast for 30-45 minutes. Barley Risotto: In a pot bring the beef stock to a boil. When the beef stock is at a full boil, add the barley and let cook. Check every 15 minutes to give it a stir. If the barley starts to look dry, you may need to add extra beef stock while it cooks. Should take about 25-30 minutes to cook. Cut the butter into small dice and slowly add it to the barley.

continued on page 24 SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017



Trevor Hopper Tango Bistro

Pumpkin Risotto 1/3 c. olive oil


1 small yellow onion, diced small


3 c. Arborio rice

continued from page 23

4 T. chopped fresh sage

1 c. white wine 8 c. heated and seasoned chicken or vegetable stock 2 2-lb. sugar pumpkins or 1 3-4 lb. sugar pumpkin, roasted 4 T. chopped Italian parsley 1/4 lb. butter, cut into cubes 1/4 lb. grated parmesan cheese

Giuseppe Di Gennaro Cotto

salt and pepper to taste

Butternut Squash Cannelloni with Pancetta Crunch

Roasted pumpkin:

2 lb. butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes 150 g. ricotta cheese, drained 120 g. grana padano cheese, crumbled and separated in half pinch grated nutmeg 2 Amaretto cookies, crumbled 1 egg yolk salt and pepper to taste 18 cannelloni tubes, slightly blanched*

Mauro Martina OEB Café

Squash Ragu 1-2 oz. organic cold-pressed canola oil 1 very large or 2 medium-size butternut squash (organic, locally grown), peeled and diced into 1-inch cubes 5 fresh bay leaves, if available, or 3 dry ones will do sea salt and fresh-cracked pepper 1/3 c. onion jam (sourced at any fine food store)

100 g. soft unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 350°F. On a sheet pan lined with parchment paper, roast the butternut squash for approximately 20 minutes or until soft to the fork. Transfer to the bowl of a food processor, add the ricotta, half the grana padano, nutmeg, Amaretto cookies, egg yolk and salt and pepper. Blend until smooth. Transfer to a piping bag (no tip required), carefully fill all the cannelloni tubes and lay them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.

1 T. tartufata (mushroom and truffle paste), (from a good mushroom vendor)

Mix the cream with the remaining grana padano and the soft butter and pour over the cannelloni tubes. Bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve 3 cannelloni per person topped with the pancetta crunch (recipe follows). Serves 6

1 t. white truffle oil to finish

Pancetta Crunch:

Pre-heat a large braising pot with canola oil, add squash and sauté for about 5-8 minutes over medium heat – try not to give the squash too much colour. Add bay leaves, season with salt and pepper. Add onion jam, stir well, lower heat to medium-low and cook for about 5 minutes. Add stock or water until squash is just about covered. Let simmer on low heat for about 20-25 minutes. Taste for seasoning, add porcini paste and tartufata, stir well, adjust seasoning if needed.

2 T. unsalted butter

approx. 2 c. vegetable stock or cold water 1 t. porcini paste (a fine food store may have it or something similar)

Just before serving, add truffle oil. Serve with your favourite roast, as a side for any fish, over egg noodles or whatever your heart desires! Serves 4.


1/4 c. heavy cream SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017

150 g. pancetta, cut into small cubes 1 T. fresh thyme leaves 3 T. brioche bread crumbs or other bread crumbs

Render the pancetta in a fry pan, over mediumhigh heat, with the butter. Add the fresh thyme and let it pop for a few moments then turn off the heat and add the bread crumbs. Let everything dry up a bit and sprinkle the top of the cannelloni with the mixture. (* find cannelloni tubes at Spinelli’s Italian Centre Shop, Lina’s Italian Market, Scarpone’s Italian Store, and The Italian Supermarket)

toasted pumpkin seed garnish

This can be done beforehand. Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut the top and bottoms of the pumpkins, then cut them in half lengthwise. Remove seeds and pulp. Separate seeds from pulp and set aside. Coat with olive oil, salt and pepper, and roast on a lined baking tray, skin-side up, for 40-50 minutes, or until fork tender. Remove from oven and let cool at least 10 minutes. Once cooled, remove the skin from the flesh with a spoon or by hand, and cut the flesh into 1/2-inch cubes. Put about half of the pumpkin cubes into a blender and blend until smooth, yielding about 1-1/2 to 2 cups pumpkin purée, reserving the rest of the cubed pumpkin. Toasted Pumpkin Seeds: 1 c. pumpkin seeds, pulp removed 4 cups water 2 cups sea salt 2 T. olive oil pinch of salt pinch of nutmeg

Preheat oven to 375°F. In a pot, boil the seeds with the water and salt for 10 minutes and drain. Pat the seeds dry, coat them with olive oil and season with salt and nutmeg. Place a single layer of the seeds on a baking sheet and roast for 10-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Use as a garnish on the risotto and keep the rest for snacks. Making the risotto: In large heavy-bottomed pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat and sauté the onion until soft, approximately 3 minutes. Add the rice and stir with a wooden spoon to coat all grains, then deglaze with white wine. Start with 1/2 the amount of stock you have on hand and add it, stirring the rice continuously until the stock is absorbed. Add about 1 cup of stock at a time from this point, stirring each addition until the liquid is absorbed and repeat until the rice is cooked, which might be more or less than measured liquid. The risotto should be al dente. Once the rice is cooked or the liquid is gone, gently stir in both types of pumpkin and 1/2 the amount of sage and parsley, continuing to cook risotto down until all liquid is absorbed. Take off of heat and stir in the butter and parmesan cheese to make your risotto creamy. Season with salt and pepper to taste. While hot, serve into 6 bowls and garnish with the reserved sage, parsley and toasted pumpkin seeds. Serves 6. ✤ SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017


WELCOME new skill set! TO YOUR


You don’t have to be a trained chef in order to slice, dice and keep up with the professionals. An investment of time, a patient outlook, a good knife and the desire to improve are all that is required.


Handle Rivets


KNIFE DEBATE: Western vs. Japanese Tang


Bolster Tip Heel

Cutting Edge

The Spine Opposite the edge, the spine is the thickest part of the blade. Its overall thickness will determine the stability of your knife. You’ll be thankful for a thick spine when things like butternut squash or lobster come across your cutting board. Your free hand will also make use of the spine whenever you’re finely mincing herbs, garlic or chile peppers. The Handle Handles come in all shapes, lengths and materials, and there’s no one style that’s right for everybody. The most popular brand name in the world means little if it doesn’t feel right in your hand. Think about your hockey stick, tennis racket or ski boots, and the reasons you chose them. A larger hand will typically need a larger surface area on the handle, while the opposite is true for smaller hands. If the fit is uncomfortable, you won’t reach for that knife and you’ve wasted your money. The Cutting Edge This is the sharp, business end of things. Extending from the Bolster (heel), to the point, edges are ground down, when they’re being made, to unique profiles. The Heel Some heels are narrow, which works great for creating an air hole in your tins of olive oil (something no professional ever does, right?) and simplifies knife honing (sharpening). Others have been reinforced and are thicker, which can be great for breaking through denser bone joints and vegetables. The heel also acts as a finger guard. Your final choice comes down to personal preference. The Bolster (or neck) Your grip is going to be spending a lot of time here. As your confidence grows with fruits and vegetables, you’ll earn your first merit badge with the development of a callus on the inside of your index finger. Having the proper grip here is like training to be a shortstop in baseball; you’re always close to the action and you’ll need to tough out the hard times (or hard vegetables). The Tang The tang is the metal part of the blade that extends into the handle, attached either by rivets, adhesive or held in place by friction with a formed wooden piece inserted over the protruding metal. Global Knives don’t have a tang, per se; rather, the knives are all one single piece of shaped steel, with golf ball-like dimples on the handles for texture and grip.


This debate is as old as it is complex, with both sides presenting equally valid talking points. I’ll attempt to keep the discussion straightforward and simple. Over the years, knife design has reflected the culture and society in which the knife was used. European and American knives were designed to process heavy meats and fibrous vegetables. As such, these knives are typically heavier, thicker and sharpened on a 20-degree angle. Brands such as Wüsthof, Henckels and Sabatier are common examples, and they make quality knives. They’re predominantly made from stainless steel of varying hardness, with a percentage of carbon steel. The hardness, or quality, of the steel, is measured on the Rockwell Hardness Scale. The majority of western kitchen knives will fall into the 56-60 hardness range. The harder the blade, the sharper the edge it can tolerate. Blades that are too hard can be brittle and prone to breaking, or even shattering. Every manufacturer is going to have a distinctive recipe that makes its knives durable, with an ability to retain an edge and be honed/sharpened. In contrast, Asian knives were originally designed for slicing through softer proteins like seafood, and less fibrous vegetables. As a result, Asian knives tend to be lighter, thinner and are, on average, sharpened on a 15-degree angle. In recent years, lines have been blurred between the two styles as globalization makes food available from all corners of the world. Many Western brands are selling Santoku-style (see description right) blades, and certain traditional European styles are now sold under Asian brands.

Which knives are essential to have in your kitchen? A knife purchase is no different from buying a car, a pair of shoes, sports equipment or a household appliance. You need to try before you buy. I typically caution people when they mention their intentions of buying a knife as a gift. Unless the recipient has mentioned that they would love a specific knife, I recommend taking that person to the knife shop, or purchasing a gift card and letting them make the choice themselves. Sometimes they’ll find a knife that’s the perfect fit, and it’s one that neither of you would have predicted.

KNIFE TYPES The French or Chef’s knife is the general contractor of the kitchen, it will do nearly any job thrown its way, rather than specializing in a particular task. Chef’s knives can range from a mere 6 inches in length to 14 inches. Reach for this one when you need to mince, slice, dice or chop vegetables, slice any type of protein or cube larger cuts of meat. Santoku, which translates to mean “the three virtues: slicing, dicing and mincing,” is a Japanese-style chef’s knife with a downward curving tip. Most of these knives don’t have a curved blade that facilitates the rocking back-and-forth cutting motion, so they take a bit of getting used to. Thinner, lighter and shorter than traditional French knives, they are primarily used to process fruits and vegetables.

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The Utility knife is the mini-me to your chef’s knife, this versatile beauty will do about 90 percent of what your chef’s knife does. Smaller than a French knife, but larger than a paring knife, you might find yourself grabbing for this maverick more often than your chef’s knife due to its versatility. It works for everything, from slicing meats and cheeses, to quartering fruit or mincing garlic and chile peppers. The serrated bread knife is not just for cutting bread anymore. Serrated bread knives work wonders on ripe tomatoes, citrus fruit and eggplant. Bread knives can be subdivided based on their blade curvature and the concavity of their teeth. Of the three musthaves, they are frequently the least expensive.

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Straight blades are fine for slicing through breads and bagels, but often lack adequate knuckle clearance, making this choice a one-trick pony. Curved serrated blades do all the above, and give the user an easy forward-andback rocking motion, ensuring that you cut all the way through your item. They typically have greater knuckle clearance, making this a very versatile choice.

KNIFE SERRATIONS – POINTED VS. SCALLOPED Pointed are the most common choice because their “teeth” grip your food, tearing through tougher vegetables with ease. Use this type the next time you’re removing the outer skin of a pineapple. Scalloped are on par with pointed bread knives in their ability to slice through fruit, and make a great alternative to a long meat-slicing blade, because their moonshaped teeth will slice through with greater finesse and won’t tear the flesh. Their biggest drawback is that those same teeth do not offer the same grip on crustier loaves of bread. continued on page 28 SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017


WELCOME new skill set! TO YOUR

continued from page 27


Create a flat surface on your produce

Can you succeed in the kitchen without these knives? Yes. Will you reach for them as often as the top three? Unlikely. They’re great to have when you really need them, however, especially as your confidence and repertoire of recipes grow.

An unstable potato, carrot or onion is an invitation for your knife to slip and cause injury. That’s easily avoided by slicing off one side of your vegetable, planting that flat side on the cutting board, rendering the vegetable immobile. From there, you can proceed to make your slices and dices.

Flexible and ridged boning knives A flexible boning knife (sometime called a filet knife) is a specialized tool. This type of knife excels at fish skin removal. You press and bend the flexible boning knife against the cutting board and slice it across the skin (skin-side down). A rigid boning knife has a sharp point and a narrow blade. It’s used in food preparation for removing the bones of poultry, meat, and fish. Straight-edged meat slicers/carvers My slicer is always the shiniest and cleanest blade in my kitchen, since it’s the one that gets used the least. I’m grateful for it, however, when it comes time to carve poultry and roasts, because it slices through with ease and grace.

KNIFE HANDLING Okay, great! Now you have all this theory. It’s time to put it to practical use. Below are some basic grips and techniques that will have you slicing and dicing like the pros in no time. Time, patience and practice are all that are needed to master these steps: The Pinchy Grip This grip is the casting-off point for all your knife skills. Having the proper grip fosters confidence, speed, accuracy and efficiency, regardless of what you’re preparing. Depending on your hand size, your thumb and index finger will pinch the blade itself, or the bolster. Your remaining fingers and palm will grab the rest of the knife handle, tweaking the grip until it feels comfortable and natural.

CUTTING LINGO Knowing the right cutting terminology will yield dividends when it comes to the taste, texture and appearance of your meals. In descending order of size and appearance: Chunk – Precise sizes are usually not important for these large, non-uniform pieces of fruit – like watermelon – or vegetables. Chop – Typically refers to a medium-large piece; one that will take longer to soften during any particular cooking process. Dice – Often refers to a smaller, more precise cut, when compared to the same chopped item. Julienne – Finger-length, matchstick-sized items cut consistently for appearance’s sake, when presentation and eye appeal are especially important. Chiffonade – Almost always refers to fresh herbs such as basil. The leaves are rolled up like a cigar and sliced crosswise into rings.

The Claw

Mince – Think minced garlic, ginger, herbs, etc. Precision is the name of the game here.

Your free hand, holding the food item, acts like a dial on a meat slicer, determining the thickness of your object. With the tips of your fingers curled underneath, and your knuckles exposed, you’ve created a movable fence that, with practice, will achieve consistently sized pieces.

When it comes to choosing your knives, your gut is your guide. Your knife should feel comfortable enough that you could slice and dice for hours without tiring out your hand and your grip.

Do the Locomotion Imagine the arm on a steam train, moving the wheels in a circular motion, thrusting the train forward. The same technique is used to slice through onions, carrots and a multitude of other fruits and vegetables.

Think about what you like to cook and the components that make up the dishes you like preparing. Your choice of knives should reflect your habits, the size of your grip and your workspace. A huge football player will typically want a 10-14” French knife that matches the size of his hand, while a 100-pound ballerina will be far more likely to opt for a lighter Japanese style Santoku or chef’s knife. ✤

These are the knife places Patrick visits: The Compleat Cook Willow Park Village 10816 Macleod Trail S 403-278-1220 Knifewear 1316 - 9 Ave SE 403-514-0577 Williams Sonoma Chinook Centre 6455 Macleod Trail SW 403-410-9191

Patrick Dunn is InterCourse Chef Services since 2008. A special thank-you to The Compleat Cook for the use of its knives for this article.






Chef-prepared heat-and-serve meals at our Willow Park Village store

RETAIL 403.264.6336 CATERING 403.640.FOOD (3663)

314 10th St. NW Calgary AB (587) 356-4088 SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017



Quick, you foodies – which Canadian crop fixes nitrogen in soil, is non-GMO, has a low carbon footprint, is a major source of protein and fibre, is gluten-free and low in fat, contains iron, potassium and folate, can help prevent Type 2 Diabetes, reduces bad cholesterol levels, lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke, and is likely the answer to feeding the world’s growing population? We’re talking pulses, friends – the edible dried seeds of legumes, which are plants whose fruit is encased in a pod. Pulses include lentils, chickpeas, dried peas and some beans, and our neighbour to the east grows much of the world’s supply, to the tune of $3.8 billion annually. Saskatchewan’s Crop Development Centre began test-growing lentils in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta fields in 1972 after an over-production of wheat left the prairies with a wasteful surplus. Drought-tolerant, frost-hardy and easy on water, pulses quickly charmed farmers, who now devote 7.2 million acres to growing lentils, peas, chickpeas, beans and faba (fava) beans. (Alberta farmers grow 1.8 million acres of pulses, mostly field peas.) In 2015, Saskatchewan grew 99 percent of Canada’s chickpeas, 94 percent of its lentils and 56 percent of its dry peas. Meanwhile, more than 80 percent of its pulse production was, and is, exported to international markets – countries like daal-devouring India and hummus-hungry Turkey. China sources the starch it needs for dumplings, vermicelli and moon cakes from Saskatchewan dried peas. The United Nations named 2016 The Year of Pulses in acknowledgement of the crucial role these grains play worldwide. To celebrate, last fall Regina held the Great Canadian Pulse Off, a concerted effort by government and industry players to draw attention to this wonder-food. It involved social media posts, public giveaways and the mayor declaring October 28th We Love Pulses Day. (This year’s Great Canadian Pulse Off takes place October 23-28.)

At one special dinner, Straub served guests a starter of yellow pea purée with beluga lentils and chickpea cracker and wound up the meal with a lentil lemon “blondie” with chocolate ganache and crispy chickpeas. His restaurant’s Mediterranean Sling, a gin and chartreuse cocktail, used “aqua faba” – the liquid cushioning canned chickpeas and beans – as a vegan alternative to egg white. The next night, at a gala dinner, chefs Milton Rebello and Louise Lu, of “seedto-table” restaurant Skye Café & Bistro, added lentils and beans to a duck confit French onion soup, produced sophisticated bean sides for the beef main, and constructed, as a garnish for lentil cardamom cheesecake, a green split pea and white chocolate macaron. With city diners focused on beans all week, did Saskatchewan’s population suddenly experience “lift-off”? Probably not. As AGT Food & Ingredients’ President and CEO, Murad Al-Katib, explained over a lunch of chickpea fritters and lentil chocolate cake at Crave Kitchen + Wine Bar, the outbursts routinely blamed on pulses vanish the more you eat them. Born to Turkish parents, Al-Katib started a business in the basement of their Saskatchewan family home that’s become the world’s largest value-added pulse processor, exporting to more than 120 countries, with $1.7 billion in revenues in 2015. At its research & development labs, AGT also develops pulse-infused products for such global food companies as Pepperidge Farm and Kraft. This Great Canadian Pulse Off was year one of a multi-year initiative, said Al-Katib, who dreams of a pulse-fueled world – though probably not literally. In it, restaurant servers would no longer automatically ask guests if they’d prefer French fries or salad to accompany their meat entrée. In his mind, the question of the future will be, “Would you like a little meat with that?”

Among other activities, visiting media were invited to the 2,700-acre, zero-till farm of major pulse grower Lee Moats. “We could have Canada over for lunch,” he joked about his farm’s production levels, “but they’d have to have hummus on toast with canola margarine.” The Pulse Off featured a restaurant contest where local chefs created pulse-based dishes, inviting the public to try them and vote for their favourite. The winning recipe came from Victoria’s Tavern’s chef Sean Hale, who created a white bean and lentil vegetarian sausage corn dog. (Next stop, Stampede?)

Beyond the Pulse Off, chefs like Williams and FLIP Eatery & Drinkery’s David Straub, and purveyors like Mark Heise of Rebellion Brewing, are integrating pulses into ongoing offerings. Heise has created a bright, refreshing and popular Lentil Cream Ale using proprietary King Red lentils from locally based processor AGT Food & Ingredients. AGT buys, cleans, sorts, peels, splits, packages and ships pulses at more than 40 facilities around the world. Chef Straub grew up on a Saskatchewan farm where pulse crops fed his family during lean seasons. In a speech at a Pulse Week cocktail party, he said he believed it’s his responsibility to use pulses in his cooking, and that they should be regarded as part of the province’s “culinary identity and cultural heritage.”


photos by Kate Zimmerman

Joel Williams, the executive chef and co-owner of Lancaster Taphouse, a Pulse Off participant, said afterward that his restaurant’s chickpea and lentil tacos surprised and pleased the 150-odd diners who tried it. He believed the Pulse Off left local diners “a lot more open” to pulses. Mind you, he was already a keener. At a Gold Medal Plates competition, he’d served beluga lentil caviar blanched in rabbit stock as a textural element in a prizewinning “rabbit duo” dish.

Chickpea & Lentil Tacos Lancaster Taphouse’s chickpea and lentil taco dish was one of the contenders in the contest. Chef Joel Williams kindly shared the recipe, along with the pico de gallo that gives the dish brightness and acidity. He tops his tacos with a coriander cream sauce whose recipe he keeps close to his vest, but the easy one we’ve offered here will likely work as well.

Tomato and Chickpea Cassoulet with Smoked Steelhead Trout (pictured left) This marvellous recipe comes from FLIP Eatery & Drinkery chef Dave Straub. For the cassoulet:

2 T. minced garlic 1/4 c. diced shallots

1 diced white onion 1/4 c. chili powder

1/2 c. dry white wine (Sauvignon Blanc is ideal)

1/8 c. ground cumin

1/4 c. fresh basil, chopped

2 c. cooked lentils

1/4 c. Italian parsley, chopped

2 c. cooked chickpeas

1 T. dried oregano

1/2 c. water

1 tin (796 mL) diced tomatoes

salt and pepper to taste

4 c. chickpeas, home-cooked or canned (and drained)

3 red onions, diced 1/4 c. diced green onion 12 fresh Roma tomatoes, halved, squeezed and chopped 1/4 c. minced fresh cilantro leaves 1/4 c. minced fresh parsley 2 diced jalapeños 2 limes, juiced salt and pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and incorporate well. Put the bowl in the fridge to chill for half an hour to let the flavours marry. Remove from the fridge, give the pico a good stir, and it’s ready to serve. Coriander Cream Sauce: To approximate Chef Williams’ coriander cream, stir some finely chopped fresh coriander leaves (cilantro) into a little plain yogurt or sour cream and add a squeeze of lime to taste. Let the mixture sit for at least half an hour to blend the flavours. To assemble: 8 -10 hard taco shells

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1 c. oyster or other mushrooms, sliced

1/4 c. canola oil

Pico De Gallo:

Now that’s reason to celebrate.

1 T. (or more) olive oil

Chickpea-lentil mixture:

Place a large sauté pan over medium heat and add the canola oil. When the oil is hot, add the diced onions and sauté until translucent. Add the chili powder and cumin and continue to sauté for 3-5 minutes. Add the lentils, chickpeas, and water. Stir with a wooden spoon to make sure all ingredients are incorporated. Reduce the heat and simmer until the moisture is almost gone. Add salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

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1 T. kosher salt 1 t. fresh cracked pepper

Preheat oven to 350°F. Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add the mushrooms and sauté them until they begin to brown. Add garlic and shallots and sauté about 2 minutes.

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Deglaze the pan with the white wine and let cook for 2 minutes. Add the herbs, tomatoes and chickpeas to the pot. Season with salt and pepper. Bring cassoulet to a simmer. Then cover and bake for 20 minutes. Smoked steelhead: 6 6-oz. filets of steelhead trout, skin on 1/4 c. kosher salt 1/4 c. brown sugar

Mix sugar and salt and rub all sides of the steelhead with it. Place the trout in a non-reactive container and cover. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, and no longer than 4 hours. Rinse fillets under cold water and pat dry with paper towel. Return to refrigerator and let dry, uncovered, for 2 hours. Set your smoker to 140°F as per the smoker’s instructions (suggested wood is maple, but any wood will do fine). Hot smoke the trout for 30 minutes, or until the desired doneness. When you’re ready to serve, divide equal amounts of cassoulet into 6 bowls. Top with smoked steelhead and finish with some microgreens or sprouts, olive oil and a squeeze of lemon. Serves 6. ✤

“As far as I’m concerned, there are only two really important decisions in a cook’s life: choosing a mate and buying a chef’s knife.

… If that seems like an overstatement, you just haven’t found the right knife.” — Russ Parsons, former L.A. Times food writer

1 c. shredded maple-smoked cheddar 2 c. romaine lettuce, shredded

Place 3 heaping teaspoons of the hot chickpea and lentil mixture into each taco. Top the mixture with a couple of pinches of the maplesmoked cheddar cheese, some pico de gallo and romaine lettuce, then finish it off with a dollop of the coriander cream sauce. Makes 8-10 tacos.

Kate Zimmerman now keeps her finger on the pulses with a broad range of lentils and beans in her pantry.

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1316 9 Avenue SE • 403-514-0577 • • @knifewearYYC SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017






by Gwendolyn Richards

tastybenefits The line of students at the Ghost Town Café winds out the room and down the hall, disappearing around a corner. It’s lunchtime at Bishop Grandin High School and students – as well as a number of teachers – are eager to see what’s on the menu. They snap up the lamb special so quickly it sells out in 10 minutes. Behind the row of culinary students taking orders and passing food over the counter, Scott Harrison is beaming. As the chef/teacher for the culinary program at the high school, he’s proud of the line and the friendly banter between his students and those buying their wares. For him, the program’s about “teaching kids how to cook real food, not the poutine and McCain pizzas we ate in high school.” The program has the fringe benefit of ensuring that other students at the school have access to healthy, nutritious and interesting offerings at lunch. Harrison builds a diverse menu and encourages his students at this multicultural school to bring in their family recipes to be adapted for lunch service. “The most important thing is to build confidence and skills for the future generation with food and health,” he says. “They’re feeding themselves and their families for the rest of their lives.” A chef with years of industry experience, Harrison joined the Calgary Catholic School District about 10 years ago, working first at Bishop McNally High School to start the culinary program there. He moved to Bishop Grandin about seven years ago as the school district began expanding the number of schools offering culinary training beyond traditional home economics classes. “Because of the success of the first three programs, it will keep growing,” he says. Modernizations currently underway at St. Francis High School include a new Red Seal kitchen, which will allow that school to also host a culinary program. At the Calgary Board of Education’s Central Memorial High School, a similar program just completed its inaugural year. After four years without, the CBE brought “culinary” back to Central in 2016, bringing in Erin Boukall to teach. “Trades are booming, so it’s important to have those learning opportunities in school,” says Boukall. According to the CBE, the appetite for cooking courses – which include both culinary programs and foods, the home economics side of the coin – is growing steadily. Every high school offers some form of food classes, though some students take them through the Career and Technology Centre at Lord Shaughnessy High School.

Erin Boukall slices black and watermelon radishes as she showcases the unusual vegetables for her students, Romi Rosen (R) and Louisa Sohmen (L).

In the 2015-2016 school year, about 17,000 high school credits were earned in foods classes – 100 more than the year before. (High school credit statistics for the 2016-17 year were not available.) And in the 2016-17 school year, 16 CBE students were enrolled in the Cook Apprentice Exploratory Program at SAIT, four more than two years ago and three more than last year. Boukall, a passionate food lover who plans her travels around meals and culinary experiences, translates her enthusiasm for food into her teaching. She explores unusual ingredients and brings in guest chefs to talk to and teach students, introducing them to myriad cuisines and dishes. “I want to open their eyes to the food scene and expose them to the passion others in the industry have,” she says. “The kids thrive on that.” Unlike math or English, the culinary program at CBE is broken down into modules. Introductory-level students get the foundations of knife skills, safety and sanitation, and cooking techniques, along with contemporary baking, snacks and appetizers, meal planning and a farm-to-table unit that puts producers in the classroom to talk about what they do. (Boukall has also installed tower gardens in the classroom, growing lettuce and tomatoes to show students where food actually comes from.) Intermediate classes cover international cuisines, soups and sauces, basic butchery and cakes and pastry. Following a quick briefing from Boukall covering the menu for the day – pork schnitzel with braised cabbage and cucumber-dill salad – and different team tasks, the students head into the kitchen. They have 90 minutes to prepare lunch for 120 students.

Erin Boukall's Scottish uncle teaching baking in her classes.


Since the program was brand new last September, most students had no experience. A handful had taken foods, but that was it. This year, 2017-18, the program

will be open to Grade 10 and 11 students and all three grades will be admitted the following year.

Over the six years he has taught at Bishop Grandin, Harrison has had more than 700 students go through the program. A handful have gone directly to SAIT after graduation.

Students cook for the cafeteria, as well as cater events.

Among his alumni is Adam Mahoney, a sous chef at the critically acclaimed Alloy Restaurant.

The program is having an impact: one student says she now wants to open a restaurant; another, Liam Vig, is already working the line at an Earls. Vig calls this one his favourite class and says it prepared him for a job at a real restaurant. He wasn’t shocked by the fast pace of working the line in a busy Earls kitchen. Some don’t plan on careers in the food world but will have a foundation of knowledge to use when cooking at home for themselves and their families in the future. Others use these courses as a springboard to move on to post-secondary programs. At Bishop Grandin, every day for lunch the culinary students make two hot items, a hot sandwich and salads for fellow students and teachers to eat. Upwards of 200 people will come to the cafeteria to buy something. Almost all the food – from sauces and salad dressings to roast meats and side dishes – is made from scratch that morning by the intermediate students in Harrison’s program. Throughout the year, they learn about sauces and short orders, knife skills, butchery, entremetier and garde manger (cooking vegetables and cold plates). In the afternoons, Harrison teaches the beginner-level students about food safety, the history of cooking and basic recipes. “Our curriculum is based on the first year of SAIT,” Harrison explains, adding that at the end of the program, students can challenge the exam for the apprenticeship program at institutions such as SAIT.

“One of my pride and joys,” says Harrison. Alexis Snyder hopes to follow in such footsteps. The recently graduated student did all three years of the culinary program under Harrison, volunteering to serve breakfast every morning and helping to cater special events, including the school’s 50th anniversary party. She’ll be attending SAIT this fall. “I always liked cooking,” she says, adding that the program gave her those skills, along with how to deal with customers, since the students themselves are also those who serve the food in the cafeteria. “When you go into the world, you’re prepared,” she says. She thinks she may become a chef in the armed forces or maybe go into education “to be a Mr. Harrison.” Harrison, who has been cooking professionally for 25 years, says he doesn’t see this as a job. “To get to do this with kids who are excited... I have to pinch myself.” ✤ Gwendolyn Richards is a Calgary-based food writer and the author of Pucker: A Cookbook for Citrus Lovers.

She believes burgers are one of the finest food creations and can often be spotted eating them while wearing her signature red lipstick and patent shoes.



WILLOW PARK VILLAGE 10816 Macleod Trail S | 403.278.1220 207 9 Ave SW . 303.263.3003 . SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017



Meet your personal ROBOT CHEF

The Thermomix kitchen robot takes the guesswork out of gourmet by Erin Lawrence

It takes years of training to be Gordon Ramsay, and serious experience to understand how to best pair foods and flavours like Jamie Oliver. If we don’t have that kind of skill, is gourmet cooking just a pipe dream, or is there a way to game the system? We’ve been promised a computerized, robotic kitchen since the era of TV’s The Jetsons (the early 1960s). While digital controls and even smart appliances like Wi-Fi connected Crock-Pots are already making their way into homes, there hasn’t been a real game-changer in kitchen technology yet. But there’s a kitchen gadget you probably haven’t heard of that’s getting us close to our futuristic fantasies. The Thermomix has a cult following in Australia and Europe, but it’s virtually unknown in Canada. The device is a bona-fide kitchen robot, able to automate thousands of recipes, and help you step-by-step through complex cooking tasks. About the size of a large food processor, the Thermomix TM5 looks like it’s been crossed with a blender, but you’d be mistaken for thinking this is a chop n’ mix hybrid. The Thermomix can blend, liquefy, whip and purée, yes. It also chops and grinds, grates hard parmesan in seconds, chops and then sautées onions, cooks soups, bakes cakes, makes ice-cream, and can cook both spaghetti sauce and meatballs at the same time. The Thermomix is made up of two specialized key parts: the base, which has builtin heating, and the bowl, which handles chopping, whipping and stirring. There’s a steamer basket for cooking veggies and potatoes, and also a set of plastic trays called the Varoma, which allows you to steam vegetables, meat and fish. Admittedly, this device sounds like it has a place at the county fair or a starring role in a late-night infomercial – “It whips! Chops! It can cook a full meal! Set it and forget it!” And while it might be tempting for us to dismiss this as just another gimmicky kitchen gadget, there’s much more to it. The Thermomix uses small interchangeable computer chips to automate recipes. You dial up the recipe you want, and the machine takes you through the cooking process, step by step, via a digital screen on the front.











COOKING (as shown on the Thermomix website)



at a time via its colour screen. Into the bowl went a whole onion and full cloves of garlic. Two seconds later, they were perfectly chopped. Thermomix turned on the heat and sautéed these aromatics, then used canned tomatoes and fresh cream to create a fast and easy hot soup that was absolutely delicious. The Robot, as I’ve actually come to call it, can also cook a whole meal at once. Thermomix had me load the steamer basket with potatoes and some water, then add the two-tier Varoma tray kit above it with veggies in the bottom and fresh fish on top. The device let me know precisely when to add each set of ingredients so that each got cooked to perfection. The thing I liked about this device was that it turned what could otherwise have been mundane kitchen chores and basic recipes into easy automated tasks. The fact that it also proved to be so versatile had me going back to my test model again and again. Recently, a company called Moley Robotics announced what it calls the first robotic kitchen, consisting of a pair of disembodied robot arms that move through a specialized automated kitchen. Whirlpool showed off its “Kitchen of the Future” at a large technology conference. The counter can spot-heat objects you set on it, like coffee cups and baby bottles, and the sink senses when you’ve set dishes inside it and closes a lid and washes them for you. While those are

A built-in scale measures the ingredients for you, and the robot brain in the machine tells you what to do next. If you follow the instructions, there’s no way to wreck your meal. Risotto comes out expertly mixed and not mushy. It’s impossible to burn creamed soups. Meatballs are mixed in the steel basin, then hand-rolled and cooked perfectly in the Varoma tray. Potatoes get cooked in the steamer basket in a milk bath, then whipped to perfection, all without dirtying multiple pots and utensils. Cleanup of the device is also insanely simple; fill the steel bowl with hot water and a squirt of soap, set it back on the motorized base, and turn it on high. The Thermomix cleans itself. Consider this the “Rosie the Robot Maid”of the 21st century.

prototypes and distant dreams respectively, Samsung is actually producing its Smart Hub refrigerator with a brain and three cameras that let you look inside via your smartphone, so you can order milk and eggs from the comfort of your office or order groceries right from a screen in the fridge door.

The device isn’t cheap and it’s not as easy to get as going to a store or ordering off Amazon. Similar to buying Tupperware, it demands that you deal with a trained consultant. With a $2,000 price-tag, it might be out of reach for many, though if you consider that the Thermomix can replace a blender, food processor, handmixer, steamer, rice cooker, ice-cream maker, coffee grinder, small saucepans, vegetable steamer and hand-blender, you might find it a worthwhile investment.

While the Thermomix may not be able to beat you at chess like the IBM computer Deep Blue, it’s a smart kitchen machine that can help those without a lot of culinary skill prepare dishes expertly. And it can even help you clean up after.

If you think it seems like this machine is promising a lot, it is. I was skeptical that it could actually deliver, so I borrowed a Thermomix from the company for several weeks of use.

For more information on the Thermomix, check out ✤

Each Thermomix comes with a tome called the Basic Cookbook, containing recipes that actually look good at first glance. I started out with an easy tomato soup. The Thermomix had me gather the ingredients, then told me what to do one step SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017

Erin is a Calgary freelance writer, journalist and TV producer with a passion for cooking, food, travel and technology. Find her on Twitter and Instagram @ErinLYYC or at

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from Heaven and Hell

I now know there’s a fearful Bermuda Triangle in which a poor store may be stranded, left on its own, and, perhaps in desperation (or pure laziness) sends off whatever. I imagine either an earnest assistant manager puzzling over what on earth to put in the gift basket, or a gum-chewing punk who simply doesn’t give a hoot, hauling expired goods off the shelves and throwing them into the loot bag. Oh, goodie. Let’s contemplate the process of putting together gift baskets. If the gift-giver is cooking and baking and steaming and frying and grilling and concocting multiple treasures in his or her kitchen, hallelujah. But perhaps, instead, they’re calling a gourmet food store to order a special gift basket for a friend. So the phone call is made; they place their order. I suspect, however, that nowhere in this transaction is there any sort of communication about who the recipient of the gift basket might be. Is it a five-month-old baby? A ninety-five-year-old senior? A marathon racer? A vegetarian? A recovering alcoholic? All of these possibilities have the potential to create some big no-nos in the contents of the gift basket. No matter the scenario, it seems to me that it might be useful for the sender to consider the following: Is the recipient deathly allergic to nuts or any product that has touched nuts, and, when presented with the basket, might he or she expire on the spot? That concept might be a great twist for a murder mystery. Although I write in that genre, I wouldn’t view that gift basket as a great token of friendship, though. So don’t send pistachios or peanut butter cookies to a person with a nut allergy, no matter how yummy nuts and legumes are to you. Or... if the recipient is an elderly person who can chew only selected extremely soft foods, like oatmeal, rice or chocolate truffles, is it kind to send a basket with Raincoast Crisps (the cracker of the devil, in my opinion, most likely funded by some dental group, to encourage broken teeth and the ordering of multiple crowns), or biscotti, or anything that needs to be smashed with a hammer to make it edible? Just wondering. You don’t have to be a Mensa member to figure this out. Having said that, I am a Mensa member and remember with shame the time I visited a friend in hospital in university days, a friend who had just had his tonsils removed, and presented him with a box of peanut brittle! He was not impressed, and many decades later, I am not impressed with myself either. I will never forget him saying to me, in deadpan disbelief, “I just had my tonsils out.” Not my finest moment.

by Linda Kupecek

I have a friend who is blessed. Last Christmas, as she was undertaking an extensive renovation of her house, her contractors presented her with a gift basket, the likes of which she had never seen before. “It was humungous,” she told me. “They delivered it themselves, because there was no way I could have lifted it into the hallway on my own.” This magnificent basket contained gourmet cheese in every variety, fresh-baked bread, jams, and myriad bottles of wine. “How did they know what I love?” my friend cried in joyous amazement. Well, um, maybe because the contractors working on her kitchen had looked in her fridge and noted that she loved cheese, jam and wine. Not only that, but they had crafted and carved artful little wooden boxes to complement the gift basket. I still daydream about those hand-carved boxes, wondering what it would take to get something like that delivered to my door. (I’m guessing $50K in renovations, but then, I’m an optimist.) This may be the acme of gift baskets. I’ve received many wonderful gift baskets in the past, with arrays of fresh fruit, jam and pickles. We are blessed when friends send us such lovely collections of goodies. I have also experienced the nadir of gift baskets, nightmares so horrible that you wonder if the sender was trying to kill you. I once opened a gift basket sent to our household and almost reeled around the kitchen in amazement at the inappropriateness of the contents. Not that I’m bitter or anything, but there was an ancient bottle of Caesar mix, still covered in dust from the museum-like shelves from which the store staff had retrieved it; a papaya that was aspiring to petrification; a totally weird bottle of sauce that I suspect only worshippers of some satanic cult would crave; rock-hard crackers; more rock-hard crackers; a strangely coloured syrup, which I wondered how to use; oh, and did I mention, more rock-hard crackers. It was a gift basket so astounding in its disappointment that at least one of us was reduced to tears. It was like opening a Christmas present and finding a piece of coal. But life goes on. We all survive such truly terrible choices by store staff, even though they may not be to blame for matching product to recipient so poorly.


I think all of us have had moments where we have made bad choices. I remember mine vividly. Like the time I served a lunch of salmon and strawberries to a dear friend who was deathly allergic to both. Luckily, she survived, mostly because she wisely refused to eat this lethal feast. It was a Spartan lunch. I think we ate apples and drank herbal tea and more wine than is normally consumed at lunch. The reason the gift basket debacle happens so frequently is that some food stores simply don’t have the time, staff, conscience, or the appropriate guidance from the sender, to put together a thoughtful basket. Oh, that Caesar drink mix hasn’t been selling well! Who cares if the recipient hasn’t had a Caesar in two decades? On the other hand, sometimes the store is brilliant in its choices, sending just the right mix of soft foods for a senior. This happened to my elderly mother some months ago. She was radiant at the assortment of truffles and soft cookies she received from Sunterra, no doubt as directed by a dear friend. I suppose the plea here is that one must consider the condition of the recipient when sending gift baskets. There are so many danged allergies these days (and honestly, you have to wonder how many are simply psychosomatic ways to attract attention – POOR ME! – and make life difficult for hosts and hostesses) that one is confounded at every turn. Gluten! Nuts! Additives! Fish! Cheese! The list becomes so endless that you just want to throw up your hands and never entertain again, or if you do, invite only those people who don’t have a list of 25 things they are allergic to. Ditto for gift baskets. How on earth is one supposed to figure out what is non-lethal, or, at the very least, safe to send? So, if baking, cooking, or crafting, think about your friends. Don’t just unload a pile of pork ribs on them if they have a major cholesterol problem. Don’t give them a ham, if ditto. Don’t give them a pile of deep-fried whatever. Gee whiz, life was simpler when people had fewer health issues and weren’t watching Dr. Oz.

Bottom line: if you’re sending somebody a gift basket, homemade or pre-ordered, take a wee moment to contemplate that individual’s situation and assess whether your intention is to give them joy and some sustenance, or send them off to the great gift basket in the sky, either choking to death, or just plain disappointed to death. Just saying. ✤ Linda Kupecek is the author of “Deadly Dues,” a Lulu Malone mystery. Despite the kvetching above, she is extremely receptive to receiving gift baskets, especially if they are loaded with chardonnay and smoked salmon.


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n Calcutta Cricket Club has moved into the building where Bar-C used to be and you’ll find modern-day Bengali cuisine that represents the region’s complex geography, history and culture, that’s much underrepresented in North America’s Indian food scene. This restaurant is a venture from the team at Thank You Hospitality, spearheaded by Cody Willis – Native Tongues Taqueria and Two Penny. He is partnered with Shovik Sengupta, Amber Anderson and Maya Gohill, a local artist. Chef is Rene Bhullar, and the food is wonderful. The menu showcases local producers and quality ingredients, such as Empire Provisions’ Seekh Kebab. And, there’s Railway Station Chai. Visit for all the tasty details. And great cocktails, too, from a fun bar. n Buffalo Mountain Café is now open in Banff on Tunnel Mountain Road, formerly Cilantro Restaurant – we know Cilantro well, and now we can get to know Buffalo Mountain Café! Yay! Look for fresh coffee, pastries, sandwiches and house-made desserts, the perfect setting to stop in pre-or post-adventure for a delicious, casual bite. Located beside Buffalo Mountain Lodge, it’s open year-round, seven days a week. For those looking to bring the CRMR dining experience home, the café offers CRMR Kitchen items, including sausages, sauces and ready-made meals. n Don’t miss PaSu Farm’s South African Barbecue on Saturday evenings, weather permitting, until end of September. We have been there, done that, and it’s an absolute feast of South African-style food, buffet-style, all-youcan-eat style, all the styles that we like! Go to and read the Calgary Herald review that tells in delicious detail what the barbecue is all about. You won’t be able to resist something this seductive. n A favourite great chef, Paul McGreevy, late of Starbelly, has moved on to Michael Noble’s notable The Nash & Off Cut Bar in Inglewood as chef de cuisine. So we can look forward to more of the inventive, delicious, exciting food that we’ve come to expect from both The Nash and chef McGreevy –a perfect combination! n River Café offers a limited number of fully prepared ready-to-roast turkey dinners to take


home. Get a specially brined, trussed and seasoned local, organic turkey from Winter’s Farm in a pan ready for roasting. Spend more time with family and friends and less time in the kitchen! Complete menu details at On October 26, River Café hosts a winemaker’s dinner with one of the Okanagan’s best, Culmina Family Estate Winery. Experience Culmina with River Café’s awardwinning regional Canadian cuisine, perfectly blending art and science. Tickets and details at n Air Canada’s enRoute magazine is putting together its annual Top 10 ranking of Canada’s Best New Restaurants and Deane House is in the running. Book your table at one of Canada’s best new restaurants. The Domaine Delon Estate is pairing back-vintage bordeaux with a multicourse tasting menu prepared by Chef Jamie Harling, September 13, in Deane’s Library. October 18, Deane House invites you on a dinner date in support of Restaurants for Change with 100% of food sales donated to support healthy food programs across Canada. Happy Hour is 3-5:30 pm daily in the Tenement bar and patio. Enjoy Live Jazz Brunch in the garden every Saturday and Sunday in September while the weather’s still warm, featuring Deane’s hip-hop house jazz band, Haven Vanguard. Enjoy brunch 10 a.m.-3 p.m. every Saturday & Sunday. Details and reservation on all of the above at n Check out Chef Keith Luce’s new place, Tavernetta, 1002 Edmonton Tr. NE. Luce was the sous chef at the White House, then head dude at Corbeaux Bakehouse and general manager and chef at Lina’s Italian Market. Then Luce headed out to do his own thing – the neighbourhood Italian Tavernetta. The menu is totally seductive, with Italian food that’s done in the Luce style – yes! Bring it on… like the creamy polenta with pork shoulder ragù, followed by the gianduja bruschetta with salted caramel hazelnuts for dessert. Thank you chef Luce. Visit for all the tasty details. n One of our fave restaurants, Model Milk, welcomes a new chef de cuisine who is king of the kitchen, Blair Clemis. Originally from Taber, he’s worked in restaurants all over the world and has now come back home. He honed his skills in these Michelin-starred kitchens in London, England: Chez Bruce, The Glasshouse and La Trompette. Welcome home, Blair! n Grumans Delicatessen will be opening a second location in September at the corner of 50 Ave. SW and Elbow Drive, the old café

Artigiano space. This location will be run by sister Gail, the inspiration for all the food. You could say that mother, “Bubby,” passed the culinary torch to Gail. The new location will be deli oriented – counter service features great smoked meat sandwiches, reubens, potato salad, cole slaw, Montreal bagels and much more. There will also be lots of prepared foods to take home, both fresh and frozen. n The Teatro Group has made a recent shift in its kitchens with the addition of venerated chef, Matthew Batey, as its new corporate executive chef. Since joining in June, Batey has taken on the culinary direction and menu development of the restaurant group’s seven distinctive properties. No small feat, but Batey is ripe for the challenge. Batey was most recently at noted chef Michael Noble’s The Nash & OffCut Bar. Chef Batey has recently brought on Dave Bohati (@chefbohati) to lead the charge of the Teatro kitchen brigade as their new chef de cuisine. Just another excuse to check out Teatro’s properties around the city – Teatro, Cucina, Vendome, Ca’Puccini, Alforno Bakery & Café, EAT Eighth Avenue Trattoria and Royale. n Chef Neil McCue’s tasty restaurant Whitehall launches a new menu that features a variety of casual street-food-inspired dishes, including more shareable plates, both small and large, more vegetable-focused dishes, all focusing on seasonal Canadian ingredients that demonstrate McCue’s British past and his Canadian present! Also, the wine list gets an overhaul to feature more Canadian wineries. Check it out, it’s bound to be good. n Madison’s 1212, located in Inglewood at 1212 - 9 Ave. SE, is a new restaurant that’s both a café and a comfortable working space serving Fratello coffee, matcha lattes and bulletproof coffee. Look for healthy salads, poke bowls and nachos while you work. In the evening, look for good wines, cocktails and local beer, plus craft nachos, such as Korean, poke, mac ‘n’ cheese, elotes, and – get this! – dessert nachos and Fiasco gelato. Find out all about it by stopping in or visit Sounds great, let’s go! n Minas Brazilian Steakhouse butchery offers different cuts of beef, chicken, pork and lamb ready for you to put on the barbecue – check it out at And available for pick up are Minas platters, where you can make your own mix or choose only meat, only hot items, only cold items or only fruit and sweets. Check it out on the web site. n We all love a good, tasty sandwich and now there’s Meat & Bread in the downtown Grain Exchange building specializing in sandwiches. Yay! We go for the porchetta with salsa verde and crackling. Can’t resist piggy meat, and these dudes do it yummy right! And the perfect bread for these power-packed sandwiches – ciabatta. Thank you Meat & Bread. n Not far south of Meat & Bread is another new-out-of-old place – Parm, as in Parmesan cheese, we think. Two big focuses here – pizzas done in a wood-fired oven, and meatballs done with pasta or on their own or in a sandwich. Yum! And more, including breakfast. Parm also features an Italian market selling “00” flour for retail purchase, San Marzano tomatoes, Sammarelli Olive oil, balsamics and spreads, as well as many grab-and-go items such as sandwiches, precooked pastas, as

well as fresh pizza dough, homemade tomato sauces and an assortment of cured meats and cheeses from Italy. A participant in the YYC Pizza Week competition featuring the Meatball Parm Pizza. Parm can host events from business meetings (lunch and dinner) to private functions for weddings and any other private events. Check it out at 1207 - 1st St. SW. n Whatever you’re craving, the Carriage House Inn offers a wide variety of dining options. Whether it’s a delicious, freshly baked snack from the bakery, a daily food and drink special from Peanuts Public House, or Thé Restaurant’s monthly and daily specials, or the award-winning Sunday Brunch, the dining options are sure to satisfy. Thanksgiving is around the corner. Enjoy the fabulous Thanksgiving brunch, three-course dinner or order the take-out Thanksgiving family meal to enjoy a no-hassle feast at home! It’s not too early to be thinking of booking your Christmas party – call catering (403) 253 -1101. n The Mexican restaurant duo – Añejo Restaurant & BLANCO Cantina – both have birthday’s coming up! Añejo is celebrating 5 years on September 4. Visit The Face of 4th Street for tequila specials all day. Reserve at n Blanco is turning 2 on October 18. Its famous #halfyhour is extended to 7p.m. and the birthday margarita is on special all day. Reservations n You may know that La Vita è Bella closed its doors in July and has been going through a major remodeling of the space and transforming the menu. Now, welcome to Cardinale, an Italian joint, as they put it, opening in September and featuring modern plates, hand-crafted cocktails and fine wine. Visit for the tasty details.

to attend. As an attendee you will taste up to 10 sandwiches, enjoy a Grizzly Paw soda and take part in a raffle and silent auction, all in support of Brown Bagging for Calgary’s Kids. Visit for all the tasty details.

drinks docket n Rocky Mountain Wine & Food Festival – Cheers to 20 Years! The Rocky Mountain Wine & Food Festival is turning 20, aging tastefully, and celebrating big time at the Stampede Park BMO Centre on October 13 and 14. Get your taste buds ready to swirl, sip and savour distinguished wines, premium spirits, downright delicious beers, and gourmet food samples from some of Calgary’s best restaurants at this must-attend festival. Grab a glass, gather the gang, and get ready to party like it’s 1997! Visit for details and tickets. Beyond, showcasing some of the province's best in food, drink and hospitality, the organizers have also added another special accomplishment to the list in 2017, and that's the opening of the Rocky Mountain Wine, Spirits and Beer shop, located in South Calgary, and featuring many of the festival wines (including exclusive product). n A brand new addition to the East Village, The Brewer’s Apprentice opened its doors on July 15 in the N3 Building, 448 - 8th Ave. SE. This craft beer-focused store is a celebration of beer and the people who brew it. Boasting a 48-tap growler fill bar full of local Alberta brews, there is a beer available for everyone. Beer not your thing? The Brewer also offers a carefully selected variety of wines. For more information on the store and to stay

up to date on all the upcoming in-store events visit n The 5th edition of Made With Love, the largest mixology competition in Canada, pitted sixteen talented barchefs against each other to seduce the 450 attending cocktail enthusiasts for Public’s Choice as well as Judge’s Choice at the Fairmont Palliser. And the winners! Ian Storcer, ProofYYC, won the Judge’s Choice with his Woodford Reserve Bourbon-based cocktail, while Andrew Derksen, Charbar, won the Public’s Choice with his Ungava Ginbased cocktail. These two will compete in the Made With Love National Finals in May 2018. Well done talented barchef dudes! And good luck on the national front! n Bring on the good beer! Alberta Beer Festivals presents Calgary Oktoberfest, September 22 & 23, Upper Big 4 Building at the Stampede grounds. Enjoy full pints and later nights! Look for 24 breweries and 48 beers, plus live music, a German band and German dancers, plus two casks stages with beers brewed for Oktoberfest, a dance floor, sports lounge and Germaninspired food. And more! You’ve been there before, you know what it’s all about – FUN! Tickets $14.99 with an online 40% discount, Sept. 1-7, 30% discount, Sept. 8-14, and 20% discount, Sept. 15-23 at n And, speaking of good beer, here’s a good idea from the Brewers Association – if you go to, you’ll find video tutorials for beer and food pairing, a four-part series, perfect for educating yourself or training staff. You can also download the Beer & Food Course Manual – the authors made the videos – for free, or order a printed copy. continued on page 40

n The Block Kitchen & Lounge invites you to its Harvey’s dinner on September 28, $55 with optional wine or beer pairings. n Island Lake Lodge invites you for a visit and a good turkey dinner for Thanksgiving, a fourcourse dinner for you and your family, Sunday, October 8, that includes wine pairings featuring the Island Lake Lodge private label, 3 Bears, and also Naramata’s La Frenz Winery. Adults, $99, including the wine pairings, Children under 12, $39. And don’t drive home, stay the night for just $129 per room, based on double occupancy. Viist for details. n Elbow Room is a locally owned and operated restaurant specializing in modern Canadian cuisine that features local ingredients. Britannia Plaza, 802 - 49th Ave SW n The newly opened Fence & Post a Prairie Kitchen offers casual fine dining in the heart of historic Cochrane. In this beautiful space chef and owner Chris Hartman offers modern Canadian cuisine, focusing on fresh, local and seasonal ingredients. 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 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. n Who doesn’t love a delicious oooooozy grilled cheese sandwich? We all do, and now you can make your best or eat them at Springbank Cheese Co.’s great Grilled Cheese Cook-Off, October 1, noon-3 p.m. at Jerome’s Appliance Gallery, 7152 Fisher St. SE. You can enter as a competitor or buy a ticket



stockpot continued from page 39 n Here’s something totally appropriate to celebrate Canada’s 150th Birthday – Taylor Fladgate Limited Edition Reserve Tawny Port, an opulent and seductive aged tawny, a fitting tribute to both Taylor Fladgate’s 325th anniversary and Canada’s birthday. Decanter magazine has awarded it 94 points for its lush, complex but aproachable palate with a concentrated, juicy, bright mulberry core of acidity surrounded by rich sticky toffee pudding and warm gingerbread notes… Oh, my goodness, it’s dessert! We want some right now. n Look for these good Monte Creek Ranch Winery wines from Monte Creek in B.C., near Kamloops, at Co-op Wines Spirits Beer stores. Look for riesling, cabernet merlot, frontenac gris, foch, Hands Up Red – that won an award for best red blend at the B.C. Best of Varietal competition – and Hands Up White. It’s good to have more good B.C. wines in Calgary. Visit for lots of information. And you can find them only in B.C. and Alberta – aren’t we special! n Uncommon Cider, Alberta’s first craft cidery, has released its latest pressing of craft ciders. Taking local Canadian apple varieties, they hand-press and hand-bottle in small batches. THe cider changes in response to the

apples that go into it and each year’s batch is a little new. Look out for the Great Northern Wild Cider, a special release in honour of Canada 150, that captures all the natural beauty of Canada at it’s very best. Find it at Vine Arts, Kensington Wine Market, Last Best Brewing and elsewhere. n The Calgary Humane Society invites you to its annual Cocktails for Critters, October 14, at the Westin Hotel. Visit for more information. Help support our fuzzy friends, it’s always a good idea! n Get yourself some Nota Bene 2015, made by Black Hills Estate Winery in the Okanagan. It’s been hugely praised, such as “rich and elegantly polished,” and our very own Cowtown Wine dude, Tom Firth, says, “Earthy and savoury on the palate but balanced by fruit, it’s layered and complex…” We all need some of this! Details at n Road 13 Vineyards has been named the Best Winery in BC and Top 10 in Canada at the National Wine Awards of Canada. The Oliver-based winery brought home a platinum win amongst the thirteen medals awarded – the only winery in Canada to win platinum. Twelve additional medals were awarded to wines within the portfolio of red, white, sparkling and rosé. Find these extra-special good wines at Co-op Wine Spirits Beer, Bin 905, Richmond Hill, The Cellar, J. Webb, Zyn, Vine Arts, Highlander and Willow Park, among others, and at restaurants all over Calgary! Visit for all the details. n On September 1, celebrate Alberta’s Birthday and Wild Rose Brewery’s birthday. On September 7, Wild Rose will launch a new barrel-aged brew – Farmhouse White: Redux.

Connecting people, places, moments

It’s spent over a year aging in French oak along with peaches and selected strains of Brettanomyces bacteria and, in the Belgian tradition, will be blended with a bit of fresh beer to achieve desired flavour and aroma. The Whole Nein Yards will be released on September 14, a take on the classic German Oktoberfest-style beer. Amber lager cold-aged six weeks to ensure a smooth finish. Emphasis on the malts – pilsner, pale, Vienna and Munich – plus some beechwood-smoked malt for a pleasant mild smoky flavour and aroma. Visit for details. n Co-op Wine Spirits Beer presents World of Whisky Grand Tasting Festival, November 4, Palomino Room, Stampede Park. A perfect blend of top international whiskies, whisky authorities and a gourmet buffet dinner, 6-9 p.m., $125, VIP, 5-9 p.m., $175. Details and tickets at

n Cuisine et Château – Hands-on classes: Made in France, Sept. 1, 27, Nov. 1; Veggie Power, Sept. 6; Table for Two, Sept. 8, Oct. 20; Cooking Method Fundamentals, Sept. 9; Easy Thai, Sept. 9, Oct. 13; The 4 Elements, grilling, curing, smoking, marinating, Sept. 10; Moroccan Flair, Sept. 12; Simply Italian, Sept. 14, Oct. 19; Gluten-free baking, and much more. Demonstration/Tasting Events: Winemakers dinner, VinAmité Osoyoos, BC, Sept. 15; Wine and Food Series “A year in a French vineyard,” Sept. 24; “Pinot Noir,” Oct. 8, “Vino Italiano,” Oct. 28. For more information visit or call 403.764.2665.

cooking classes

general stirrings

n SAIT’s downtown Culinary Campus: Date Night, Sept 8 or Oct 27; Canning, Sept 9 or 16; Introduction to Cooking, Aug 28-Oct 2; Fish Cookery, Sept 20; France, Sept 28; Turkey Dinner, Oct 3; Intermediate Cooking, Oct 16-Nov 6. SAIT’s Main Campus: Baking Cakes, Sept 16; Cake Decorating, Oct 6-Nov 3; Assorted Buns, Oct 7; Sushi, Oct 13; Cupcakes, Oct 14; Sausage Making, Oct 14; Bar Mixology, Oct 16-Nov 2. Visit for details and more courses.

n YYC Pizza Week is back! Yay! Our favourite pizza celebration is back for it’s fourth year, offering pizza lovers unique and delicious pizza creations from September 22 until October 1. More than 40 of Calgary’s best local pizza restaurants and food destinations are creating one-of-a-kind signature pizzas for all to enjoy. Partial proceeds from every pizza sold will benefit Calgary Meals on Wheels. A panel of experienced pizza eaters will determine this year’s winners in a variety of soon-to-be announced categories. More information plus pizza descriptions can be found at Check it out and go eat pizza. Eat lots of pizza – we all love pizza.

n October 8, 12 and 19, the Calgary Horticultural Society partners with The Light Cellar in Bowness to create a series of workshops to help Calgarians make the most of their fall harvest. The three, two-hour-long workshops cover learning the basics of fermentation, making sauerkraut, condiments, home-made dairy and non-dairy cheeses, and making fermented herbal drinks and kombucha. Also, learn how to can, preserve and store your vegetables with the “How to” talk and demonstration, September 6. See for workshop details. n The Light Cellar invites you to learn how to craft your own food and medicine. Fermentation, chocolate making, elixir crafting, glutenfree and more... The Light Cellar offers a variety of classes to help you upgrade your health in fun and easy ways. Check the website for the autumn 2017 class details and registration. n September 23, October 21, and November 4 are the three remaining dates for 2017 Thermomix Cooking Classes in Edmonton. Hop in a car with some friends and immerse yourself in a dynamic interactive food experience where you can witness this revolutionary kitchen appliance live up to the hype – read all about your personal robot chef on page 34. If interested in that, or hosting or participating in a local Basic Cooking experience, please contact Valerie Lugonja at or phone 780-456-5073. n The Cookbook Co. Cooks: September – A Night Out Couples Classes on Fridays; Thai Classics; Meat, Meet Beer! A Mixed Grill Menu with 6 Craft Beers; Handmade Stuffed Pasta; Fermentation Workshop; Giuseppe Returns: Italian Comfort Food from Cotto; A VegetableForward Evening: Off the Menu of 10 Foot Henry; Cut Like a Pro: Essential Knife Skills. October – Pie and Pastry Making Workshop; Perogies! Sweet & Savoury; An Authentic


Mexican Feast; Grown Up & Kids’ Class; Off the Menu of Alloy; A Vegetarian Night Out: Couples Class; Foreign Concept and Metrovino Present Pan-Asian Cuisine and Riesling. And much more, check for all the classes, register at 403-265-6066, ext. 1.

n Savour Fine Foods in Inglewood is expanding. Head down to this charming neighbourhood and visit one of our favourite shops – more room, more great products, same great selection and wonderful personal service. Find it at 1331 - 9 Ave. SE in Historic Inglewood, 403-532-8222. n Woot! Woot! More good doughnuts! Mountain Rhino Donuts, a gourmet doughnut maker, sells at the Marda Loop Farmers’ Market, the Parkdale Farmers’ Market and Okotoks Farmers’ Market. Ain’t nuthin’ like a good doughnut to get your day started right… visit for all the tasty details. n Starbucks is expanding its lunch offerings to bring you protein-rich and vegan choices that are quick and convenient. Check these out – Baby Greens and Brown Rice Protein Bowl with Toasted Sesame Dressing (pictured); Chicken & Quinoa Protein Bowl with Chile Vinaigrette; Egg and Cheese Protein Box with Apples and Grapes; Butter Chicken Wrap with Jasmine Rice. You go in for coffee or tea, so get yourself a tasty, healthy lunch, too! n REAP Business Association hosts the 8th annual Food for Thought festival on September 13 from 5:30 pm - 8:30 pm at Hotel Arts. This year the event is the kickoff to a national conference on building strong local economies

– EconoUs2017. Indulge in delicious dishes prepared by some of Calgary’s most celebrated local restaurants, with ingredients provided by a group of organic local food producers. It’s a feast for the senses and a celebration of living locally! Tickets available through Eventbrite or be n An invite to eat cheese and pasta on September 16 at 1 p.m. Visit Springbank Cheese Company at Crowfoot and join Adrian and Carie Lee Watters in celebrating their purchase of the Crowfoot Cheese Shop, 7414 Crowfoot Road NW. They are cracking open a grand wheel of Parmigiano imported from Italy and topping it off by cooking pasta inside the wheel for you to sample.

n Hah, this is funny! Kentucky Fried Chicken, known for a very long time as KFC and KFC Canada, has decided to celebrate its 62-year Canadian history in honour of Canada’s 150th Birthday by changing its name to K’ehFC! Love it! K’eh, indeed. n Local Eat North foodie Dan Clapson is running a unique dinner series beginning September 29. The Grid Dinner Series is a multi-city dinner series that highlights prairie chefs across Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba where everything is grown/designed in the prairies. The goal is to unify the prairies and show each major city what each one can

offer within their respective communities and what grows around them. Each dinner will offer five courses with one course created by each participating chef and one course created collectively. The courses are visually inspired by the farming grid system that stretches across the provinces. The first dinner takes place in Calgary, September 29, followed by Edmonton, October 1, Saskatoon, October 3 and Winnipeg, October 5. Calgary’s participating chef is Jamie Harling, Deane House. And the series features lots of Alberta goodies, like Porter’s Tonic, cured meats from Empire Provisions and more. Full event and ticket information available on


n This could be good for all of us – Danielle Arsenault is the founder of Pachavega Living Foods Education, a vegan culinary school that specializes in raw food chef training and raw food cooking classes – organic, plantbased education to heal your body and ignite your spirit. A professor at Pacific Rim College in Victoria, B.C., she teaches hoistic nutrition cooking, superfoods and whole-foods preparation classes. Arsenault’s courses are offered in Mexico, Nicaragua, Australia AND Canmore! Visit to find out when you can sign up for one of these 2-day courses in Canmore – such as 20-hour Intro to Raw Foods and the Anti-Inflammatory Diet – in the fall of this year and in the spring of 2018. Good stuff, check it out!

A whole new kind of dining out.

n Michael Roszell, chef de partie at the Pear Tree Restaurant in Vancouver, will represent Canada at the international culinary competition, the 41st Annual La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs event in Frankfurt, Germany, on September 8, the Concours International des Jeunes

Elbow Room is a locally owned and operated restaurant specializing in modern Canadian Cuisine that features local ingredients. Britannia Plaza, 802 49th Ave SW, Calgary


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A perfect blend of top international whiskies, leading whisky authorities and a gourmet buffet dinner.






New Location

Granary Road Market – Opening Soon!

A cozy and intimate Calgary classic.

cilantro Visit for upcoming tastings, events and to order online.

SPIRITS & CRAFT ALES BIN 905 WINE, Mission I Granary Road Market

Seize the Rockies

Capture a landscape. Or be absorbed by one. Hike, bike, canoe or stay in and pursue new extremes of comfort. Our rustic mountain lodges energize the body and settle the soul.

Elev. 1692 m Tunnel Mountain Trail Trailhead is a 23 minute walk from Buffalo Mountain Lodge.


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for October 1, 2017. Visit or call 403-764-2665 for details.

Chefs Rôtisseurs Competition, competing against other young chefs, all under the age of 27, from as many as 25 other countries in a black box event. The international winner receives a five-week advanced culinary course at le Cordon Bleu, Paris, and an executive chef attaché case with a complete set of professional knives, sponsored by Wüsthof. Good luck to you, Michael.

n Does your home support your health and wellness? It’s not a question most people tend to consider, but Calgary interior designer, nora bouz (her brand identity), would like that to change. nora is launching a new business that will have us all thinking more holistically when it comes to how we live. Follow her on social media (nora bouz on Facebook, norabouz_ creativespace on Instagram and @nora_ norabouz on Twitter) for lead-up to the launch.

n Worthy Experiences specializes in photography, content creation, social media management, visual storytelling, and establishing brand identity. n Don’t miss the Calgary Fall Home Show. From renovation overhaul to brand-new build, DIY do-over to one-day décor dreams, the Calgary Fall Home Show is where big ideas, trusted advice, and fresh inspiration unite, complete with more than 350 trusted brands and local companies. It’s where the biggest names in the industry, including HGTV Canada’s Bryan Baeumler and Tiffany Pratt join forces with local experts to bring your home dreams to life. September 21-24 at the BMO Centre at Stampede Park. Satisfaction guaranteed – they’re so sure you’ll enjoy the show, they’ll refund your admission if you don’t! For more information and tickets, visit and save $3 on regular adult admission. n Cuisine et Château invites you to one of 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 immersive gastronomic experience. Dates are June 3-9 and June 10-16. An information session is scheduled

n This is cool, a piece of equipment for your grill that makes cooking chicken legs and stuffed jalapeños easy peasy. Made by Outset, this convenient chick leg and stuffed jalapeño holder is made from stainless steel and holds 24 legs or peppers, and with collapsible legs, it’s easy to store and it’s dishwasher safe. Visit and go to “Outset” for details and ordering. n Now until September 10, experience a magical night with Brewster Travel Canada on the featured experience – Evenings on the Ice, a two-hour journey through the Columbia Icefield to observe a piece of natural Canadian history paired with delicious appetizers. Finish the tour with dinner at the Altitude Restaurant. To book this experience, visit and scroll down to the details on this adventure. n Friends of Fish Creek Park invite you to the 4th Annual A Taste of Autumn Wine & Beer Tasting and Silent Auction Fundraiser, September 15, at the Meadow Muse Pavilion, Bow Valley Ranch, Fish Creek Park, south end of Bow Bottom Trail, 6:30-9:30 p.m., $60, with a tax receipt for $30. For details and tickets, phone Friends of Fish Creek at 403-238-3841 or visit

n PARKLUXE 2017, presented by Bankers Hall, is a luxury art and fashion show featuring some of Canada’s premier high-end fashion designers and artists. Taking place on September 30, PARKLUXE is designed to connect Calgary’s fashion and art lovers with the talent that produces it. Attendees will have the opportunity to shop featured designers on site. Visit for tickets and more details. n If you’re heading to the west coast, stop into Whistler, there’s lotsa new stuff going on. New Hunter Gather eatery and taphouse, known for its in-house smoked meats. New Fifi’s Bistro that approaches health and dietary requirements with consideration so there’s something for everyone, veg and meat alike. Whistler Village beer Festival, September 1317. Cornucopia Whistler, November 9-19, fall festival of food and drink, with great accommodation deals, and Nourish for those committed to greater health to share ideas. Whistler Food Tours of chef-guided experiences that showcases what makes Whistler a great food destination. And much more… visit whistler. com/activities for more details. n Empire Provisions artisan butcher and charcuterie company will move into its own storefront this fall, the former Cured Delicatessen space in Haysboro. Look for a dine-in cafe and retail store offering signature sausages, naturally raised meats and prepared take-out meals. Open for breakfast, lunch and brunch daily. n Tango Bistro – Monday: Buck a Shuck, $7 glasses of Blanquette and free corkage. Tuesday: Raw bar happy hour and Green hour (half price glasses of wine, $2 off all cocktails, flights of absinthe) all night long. Wednesday: Wine night $7, 6 oz. and $10, 9 oz. Thursday: Beer night, $5 draft and

bottles. Sunday: Seafood Boil and Bottomless Beignets. Raw bar happy hour and Green hour every day from 4:30 - 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. until close. n The Calgary Produce Marketing Association holds its Fall Harvest Sale September 9 and 10 at Heritage Park. This great sale brings in over 12 semi loads of fresh produce, from berries, carrots, lettuce, potatoes and everything in between. All from member companies, locally, in Canada and throughout North America. Funds raised support the Alberta Children's Hospital, Community Kitchen Program, Heritage Park Society and various school and community programs. For details, visit

BBQ on the Bow Don’t miss it, September 2 & 3 at the Montgomery Community Centre, 5003 - 16th Ave NW. Lots of good stuff for adults and kids, good smoked meat to eat, music and fun for the whole family. This is the 25th annual BBQ on the Bow and we've been to every one of them. See you there! Visit for all the smoky details.

OPENING SOON Three distinct concepts, one food philosophy.

BAKERY KITCHEN LOUNGE Part of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Resorts Family of Companies. SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017


healthy, natural cookware

6 quick ways with...

Chris Halpin


I have always been fascinated by the stunning array of shapes and colours that squash comes in. There is archaeological evidence of squash being cultivated in the Americas as far back as 8000 B.C. and remains an important food source for many cultures. They are a close cousin to melons and are not a vegetable – as they are commonly called – but rather a fruit. If you roast squash with its skin on, it will last up to 10 days in the fridge. So, when I have my oven on for cooking something else, I will often roast one to have it on hand. What I do is poke the skin randomly with a fork, about 6 times, then lightly coat the outside with cooking oil and place it in the oven, along with whatever else I have in there at the time. At 350º F., a medium squash will take about 30 minutes.

Delicata Squash and Ginger Soup

currently on sale for $299.99, regularly $400.

A T D A L H O U S I E S T A T I O N 403.286.5220

Fresh ginger and turmeric are a flavour duo that pops on the palate and soothes the stomach, all at the same time. If you can’t find delicata squash, then use a deeply coloured squash like butternut. Into a large pot, put 1 onion, chopped, 1 small delicata squash peeled, cleaned and diced, 1 small fennel chopped, 1 T. minced fresh ginger and 1 T. minced fresh turmeric, no need to peel them or fuss in any way. To get the correct consistency for your soup, add only enough stock to cover the contents of the pot – about 3 c. or more, if needed, of chicken or vegetable stock. Place over high heat and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer, add salt to taste. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes, or until everything is soft. With a blender, purée until smooth, adjust the salt and add 1/2 c. whipping cream. For a garnish, whip 1 c. whipping cream with 1/2 t. salt into stiff peaks. Chop about 2 t. of chives. To serve, spoon soup into bowls, place a dollop of cream in the centre of each bowl and sprinkle chives over top. Serves 4 to 6.

Red Kuri Squash Stuffed with Sausage Red kuri squash can get quite huge. So, if you can’t find any small ones, then use acorn squash. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Cut 2 very small red kuri squash in half and scoop out the seeds and pulp. Arrange on a baking tray and set aside. In a bowl put 2 roma tomatoes, diced, 3 slices white bread, cubed, 4 spicy Italian sausages with the casings removed and picked into little bits, 2 T. chopped fresh parsley and 1 t. salt and toss to moisten the bread. Divide the filling into the squash “bowls.” Bake in the oven until the sausage is cooked and the bread looks golden and a little crispy, about 20 to 25 minutes. Serves 2 to 4.

Stewed Chicken with Acorn Squash and Green Beans This stew is a fast one. I don’t like chicken when it gets stringy, so as soon as the chicken is cooked through, this stew is ready. Into a large pot, put 8 chicken legs, skin on, 1 acorn squash, peeled, cleaned and diced, 1 red onion, sliced, 24 baby potatoes, cut in half, 2 c. water, 2 c. white wine, 1/2 t. saffron, 1 t. smoked paprika and 1 T. salt. Place over high heat and bring to a boil before reducing the heat to low. Simmer for 20 minutes before adding 1 c. cut green beans and 1 red pepper, diced. Increase the heat to bring it back to a boil. Cook for another 5 minutes or until the beans are tender, adjust the salt and serve. Serves 4.


Coconut Curried Squash and Mushroom There is something about this combo of portobello mushroom and kabocha squash that I find so satisfying! Simple and totally balanced; I wish my vegan friends would serve this to me. In a heavy bottomed pot, over medium heat, put 2 T. canola oil, 4 shallots, sliced and 2 T. madras curry paste. Sauté until the shallots are soft, about 4 minutes. Cut 3 large portobello caps into slender wedges and set aside. Peel and clean out half a medium kabocha squash, also cut into thin wedges. Add the mushrooms and squash to the pot, along with 1-1/2 c. coconut cream and 1-1/2 c. water. Bring to a slow boil and allow to cook for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the squash is soft. Serve over rice or quinoa, finish with a squeeze of lime and some chopped cilantro. Serves 4.

Spaghetti Squash Puttanesca Roast a spaghetti squash and have it ready for this recipe. There is a trick with this squash to get it to look like its namesake. Cut it in half lengthwise, from top to bottom. Scoop out the seedy stuff, use a fork and gently scrape from side to side along the short side. You will see that the flesh will go into long spaghetti-like strands; set this aside for later. In a dry pan over high heat, add one basket of grape tomatoes and allow them to scorch on a couple of sides. While this is happening, roughly chop 1/2 c. pitted kalamata olives, crush and finely mince 2 garlic cloves. When the tomatoes have finished scorching, turn the heat off and add 1 t. chile flakes. With a potato-masher squash the tomatoes, then add 1/4 c. olive oil, the kalamatas and garlic, 2 T. small capers, 1 t. dried oregano and stir to incorporate. Turn the pan to low and add the spaghetti squash strands and gently, evenly coat them. Adjust the salt and bring the puttanesca up to temperature. Serve as a side dish or crumble feta over top and serve as a main. Serves 4.

recipe photos by Chris Halpin

Maple Butternut Tarts

This is a great tart for Thanksgiving. The vinegar in this recipe is used to stop the eggs from setting completely and will make the filling creamy and a little runny – yum. Preheat the to 350ºF. To make the custard, in a bowl, lightly beat 2 eggs, add 1/2 c. brown sugar, 1/2 c. maple syrup, 1 t. apple cider vinegar and mix until the sugar has dissolved. Arrange 12 pre-pressed tart shells onto a baking sheet and put about 1 T. thinly diced butternut squash into each shell – about 3/4 c. in total. Fill each tart with the custard and bake for 20 to 25 minute or until the crust is golden brown. Makes 12. Chris Halpin has been teaching Calgarians to make fast, fun urban food since 1997 and is the owner of Manna Catering Service.



403 287 8544 K

403 452 3960 S








OCTOBER 17, 24, 31 | NOVEMBER 7, 14, 21

Exclusive tour of Heritage Park’s gardens and four-course dinner including wine pairings.

Enjoy a three-course movie-themed dinner followed by the film in Gasoline Alley Museum.

Event information, menus and movie selections at SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2017



Allan Shewchuk


Another summer has come and gone. This last one was exceptional – not because of the usual things, like hailstorms or mosquitoes, but because this past July and August were the first in my life when I didn’t get invited to a wedding. At first I was depressed, because my kids are in their late 20s and between them all, they attended nine weddings, spanning Canada from Halifax to Vancouver. I guess it’s a function of my age but, sadly, this summer when I got dressed up in a suit, it was only to go to a mind-numbing number of funerals. I used to throw my arm out on the steps of a church tossing confetti, but now I throw my back out carrying coffins.

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The interesting thing I learned by showing up at so many end-of-life functions is that my generation has decided to turn the post-funeral reception from a sombre event into one last chance for the deceased to host a great party. No more sandwiches with the crusts cut off in the church basement. Now it’s the Golf and Country Club, where I went to hear tributes for a pal and every one of the 300 guests was greeted at the door with a fishbowl-sized glass of wine, which was then constantly refilled. A huge buffet dinner followed. Although the reason for gathering was sad, pretty soon everyone there was laughing and talking about the dearly departed, and they continued until well into the night. It dawned on me when I left, spilling into my Uber, that funerals are the new weddings, and I should be grateful that I got to celebrate a friend’s life at such a splashy affair. It was sure as heck better than having to endure one more unprepared, or inappropriate, toast to the bride at an interminable wedding reception. Think about it: what better occasion is there to party hearty than at a send-off for someone who mattered to you? The Irish figured this out eons ago with the tradition of a true wake. Immediately upon a death on the Emerald Isle, the home of the deceased was open to all, and the casket, with the body still warm, was placed in the parlor. Then, drinking, laughing and singing went on all around the corpse. One of my favourite Irish wake stories is the one where an attendee has far too much Guinness, stumbles into the wrong room and sits down at the piano, thinking it’s the coffin. Looking down at the keyboard, he raises his pint and says, “Ah, Frankie, ye always had a beautiful smile!” As for eating at any of these after-funeral gatherings, I learned when a Jewish friend died in July that, not only does there have to be lots of food on hand for mourners, but carbohydrates are essential. The minute word got out that my buddy had gone to his great reward, it was as if every person he knew made it a point to send starch to his family: blintzes, latkes, perogies, lasagnas, scalloped potatoes, breads and doughnuts. Literally every conceivable form of gluten was there for the taking. I know my friend had passed, but for the week of sitting shiva – the traditional Jewish mourning period following a burial – I thought I was the one who had died and gone to heaven from carbo-loading 24/7. Let’s just say that if it had been Gwyneth Paltrow’s funeral, she would have been spinning in her grave. Of course, she would probably consider that a good abdominal workout. My abs disappeared after the second tray of blintzes arrived. Because I think it’s such a great idea to be sent off in style with an over-the-top celebration of life, I’ve started to ponder my own. I’d like the food and drink to represent my life experiences. Growing up Ukrainian means there should be a nod to the huge farm weddings I attended as a kid, so there needs to be a bottle of Five Star rye whisky on every table. There would be pappardelle al ragu from my beloved second home in Tuscany. Some injera (spongy flatbread) and doro wot (chicken stew) to commemorate my fond memories of Ethiopia. And, of course, fishbowls of Chianti handed to mourners the minute they come through the door. As one friend wisely advised me, “Tell people about the free wine right in your obituary, Allan. That way someone might actually show up….” 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.


I ONLY came for corn.

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