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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Warming Moroccan Tajines for Winter on CBC's Weekend Morning Show

Yesterday morning I had the pleasure of presenting the following recipes on CBC's Weekend Morning Show with Kerän Sanders. I've simplified and adapted the elk recipe from Paula Wolfert's recipes. These recipes would be a hit after skiing, skating, tobogganing, etc.

Moroccan Elk (Beef/Lamb) Stew

1 lb elk roast, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 onions, thinly sliced
2 tbs ras el hanout
1-2 tbs olive oil
1-2 tbs butter
good pinch saffron
2 large tomatoes, chopped
3 carrots, peeled and diced
2 green peppers, seeded and diced
1/2 - 1 cup prunes
2-3 tbs honey
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup red wine
salt, to taste

Slowly sauté onions on medium-low heat with olive oil until they begin to caramelize. Stir in Ras el Hanout spice blend. Turn up heat to medium-high and add butter and saffron. Brown meat well on all sides and add tomatoes and other vegetables. Add broth, prunes and honey. Add red wine and salt and let simmer for 1-2 hours, depending on using the tajine and toughness of the meat. Meat should melt in your mouth when done.

Serve with flat breads, rice, couscous or bulgur.


Moroccan Squash Tajine

1 small butternut, hubbard or winter squash, peeled and chopped into bite-sized pieces
1 medium chopped red pepper
1/4 cup chopped black olives
1/4 cup chopped dates
1 medium onion, chopped
1 head garlic (loose cloves)
2 tbs olive oil
juice of half a lemon
1 tbs turmeric
1 heaping tablespoon Ras El Hanout *
Splash of Rosewater**
1/2 chopped pickled lemon (just the peel)***
Pinch of salt
Optional: eggplant, zucchini

Place all ingredients together in a casserole dish (traditional cooking vessel is a tajine). Cover and bake at 350F for about 45 minutes. If cooking on the stovetop, cook covered at medium heat for about 30 minutes or until the vegetables are fork tender. Serve with rice or couscous or bulgur.


Thursday, November 04, 2010

Stunning Holiday Feasts with the Assiniboine Park Conservancy and the MLCC

Last night I had the pleasure of presenting the following dishes for a fundraising/educational event for the Assiniboine Park Conservancy at the Grant Park Manitoba Liquor Control Commission (MLCC). MLCC Product Ambassador Carol Herntier provided the beverage pairings for each dish and Assiniboine Park Conservancy Education Coordinator Bonnie Tulloch provided information and history on the plants used in each dish.

1. Caramelized Shallot and Chevre Tarts
Paired with Spy Valley Pinot Gris - New Zealand
1 lb shallots, peeled, cut if very large
1 cup port
1-2 sprigs rosemary
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 tbs olive oil
1 tsp dried thyme
1 cup chevre
tart shells

Preheat oven to 350ºF. In a roasting pan, place shallots, herbs, olive oil, salt and pepper and port. Bake until caramelized and soft, about 30 - 45 minutes. Fill baked tart shells with a spoon full of chevré cheese and a shallot with some sauce. Bake at 350ºf for 5-7 minutes. Serve hot, warm or cold.


2. Spanikoptia Triangles
Paired with Patriarche Bourgogne Pinot Noir – France

1 pkg filo dough
2 pkgs frozen spinach
1 white onions chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
1/2 c mushroom sliced
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp paprika
3 1/2 tbs olive oil
1 1/2 c feta cheese crumbled
1 egg
pepper to taste
1/3 c butter
Thaw pastry in package. In advance, prepare filling. Sauté onion and garlic
until translucent. Add mushrooms and sauté. Add thawed spinach and
spices. Cook on medium-high heat until some of the water has cooked off.
Add grated feta. Mix in one beaten egg. Remove from heat and cool.
To prepare pastries: Heat oven to 350F. Dampen tea towel. Cut rolled
pastry into four equal parts and lay out on cutting board. Cover with
dampened towel. Melt butter and set aside with pastry brush. Fill pastries in
desired shapes (triangles, pockets, in muffin or cupcake tins, etc). Brush
pastries with melted butter before filo turns papery. Bake until golden, about
15 minutes.

3. Kerala Shrimp

Paired with Thirty Bench VQA Riesling – Canada
1/4 kg small shrimp
1 tsp ground chilies
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp vinegar

1 tbs cooking oil (grapeseed oil or canola so as to not add flavour)
1 large onion, chopped
a few curry leaves
1/4 tsp. paprika or chili powder (depending on how spicy you like the food)
1 tsp coconut oil (optional)

Clean and marinate shrimp in chilies, turmeric and vinegar at least 1/2 hour before cooking.

Heat oil in pan and sauté onion until golden brown. Remove from oil and set aside. Fry the shrimp in the same oil until crispy. Then add the fried onion, curry leaves and optional paprika or chili powder on low heat. Add the coconut oil for good Keralan flavour. Test for salt and serve with rice, roti or chappati, etc.

4. Phyllo Rolls

Paired with Ravenswood Vintners Blend Zinfandel – USA

For two large rolls

6-8 phyllo sheets
1/2 cup melted butter
1 tin artichoke hearts, drained and roughly chopped
1 500 ml Ricotta
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (can use toasted sliced almonds)
1/2 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes
1 roasted red pepper, chopped
2 tbs basil pesto (or try arugula pesto, 1 tbs cilantro chutney, etc.)
1 egg, beaten
1/4 - 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
salt, to taste

Preheat oven to 350ºF. In a large bowl, mix artichokes, Ricotta, Parmesan, pine nuts, sun dried tomatoes, roasted red pepper, pesto and seasonings. Lay down 3-4 phyllo sheets on a baking sheet. Spoon filling onto sheet, leaving room for covering ends and roll, folding in the ends.

Bake roll for 15 - 20 minutes, until brown. Cool for 5 - 10 minutes to let set and then slice.


5. Lemon curd Tarts
Paired with Rossi D’Asiago Limoncello (chilled in freezer) – Italy
Finely grate the peel of 2 large lemons. Squeeze them and reserve the juice. Melt 1/2 cup butter in a double saucepan over a very gentle heat. Gradually add 1 cup superfine sugar, 3 beaten eggs, the grated lemon zest and the lemon juice. Stir until thickened. Put into sterilized jars while still hot and cover with wax paper, pressing the paper on the surface of the lemon curd. Leave until completely cold before covering the jars.

For 100 milers, I made this with local Raspberries instead of lemons and it was delicious over a pavlova.

Serve on bread or fill in tartlet shells.