Creative Aging Week is June 1-7. The Springfield Library is hosting a couple of special events in celebration of the 50+ crowd and I will happily be a part of it. Join me on Thursday, June 4 where we'll cook a healthy and delicious lunch loaded with local and seasonal fare. Pre-register at the library to save your seat. We'll have the best tasting lunch in the county!
Goat Cheese Dip
The latest issue of Relish Elgin has just been published after a winter hiatus. I've been contributing a recipe, article, and photographs regarding local food in the region for the past three years and it's always a confidence boost to see something with my name on it in print.
I try to keep the recipes simple enough for novice cooks to want to attempt, unique enough to be different from what everyone else is doing, and always features a seasonal or regional food item. Try it and let me know what you think.
Another Bake Day has been schedule for May 26. You can view the baking list here. Ordering is as simple as sending me an email with what you'd like to reserve then coming to the oven to pickup on the day of the bake.
One of the items that will be baked is a dense, seeded sourdough loaf prepared with sprouted wheat kernels, beer, and more organic seeds than organic rye & spelt flours called rugbrød. What can you do with rugbrød?
You can use this dense rye sourdough bread as the foundation for Smørrebrød (open-faced sandwiches).
1. Hummus, cucumber
2. Butter, radish, dried kraut
3. Ricotta, asparagus, preserved lemon
4. Cream cheese, smoked salmon
5. Avocado, black bean, fermented corn relish
6. Mayo, eggs, bacon, mache
Rhubarb - Vibrant Taste of Spring
If you haven't already picked up your copy of the late spring edition of Relish Elgin magazine, you probably should grab it while you can. For the past three weeks the free guide to Elgin has been flying off my counter at the market.
In this issue I developed a recipe inspired locally grown rhubarb. By pairing rhubarb's natural tartness with the spiciness of last autumn's dried peppers, a velvety smooth, smoky & sweet barbecue sauce became a great spring preserve. Combined with Mexican-inspired pulled pork carnitas, this sandwich is not only worthy of Father's Day lunches, but also everyday suppers all summer long.
Relish Elgin magazine is available in many local establishments. You can also view it online.
Vegetable Fermentation Workshop
"Humans did not invent or create fermentation. It would be more accurate to state that fermentation created us."
On June 11, I'll be working together with the Backus-Page House Museum in Wallacetown for a beginner workshop on vegetable fermentation. For those who have just discovered your love of cultured foods or perhaps are a little leery about what the fuss is - this night is for you.
We'll discuss the basics of fermentation, move right into a tasting of different vegetable pickles, then get our hands dirty to create jars of ferments you will take home. I'll also supply you with a few basic recipes just in time for the summer harvest season so you can preserve your own bounty and enjoy the complex flavours all year long.
To register for the event, call the Backus-Page House Museum at (519)762-3072.
November is a transitioning month: the clock's have fallen back into standard time, the pumpkins have been tossed to the curb (unless you have a compost pile in your backyard where you like to play pumpkin roulette in the summer), and it is absolutely too early to turn on any Christmas lights (do you hear me, Shedden?? It's too early!) even if it does get dark at 5:00 pm.
In the meantime, we keep the furnace off as long as possible, put the lawn furniture away, harvest any green tomatoes brave enough to attempt a shot at turning red on the vine, and we get cozy.
Some of us get hungry, too.
This recipe for Chestnut & Chocolate Semifreddo is available in the Holiday issue of Relish Elgin magazine. You can pick up a copy (or three) at many local establishments or view it online through their website at RelishElgin.ca.
Now that summer is just around the corner, asparagus' time to shine is coming to an end. If you haven't had a chance to try my recipe for ale battered asparagus I recommend you pick up some spears this weekend before it's too late. They would make a great accompaniment to bbq'd steak for Father's Day.
Just in time for the first long weekend of the season, Relish Elgin has just published their late Spring 2013 issue and lo and behold it features an incredibly, delectable spring treat fit for a king (or queen): Ale Battered Asparagus. Recipes and photos by yours truly!
You can pick up a hard copy of the publication at many local retailers and libraries. Once the magazine is available online for viewing I will edit this post to add a link.
If you're out and about Saturday morning, pick up the latest issue of Relish Elgin, stop in to the farmers' market for some local asparagus and then head on over to the brewery for a beer or two. It is 'May 2-4' after all.
Edit: May 18, 2013
The magazine is now available online.
Pavlova may seem like an exotic, complicated dessert to make for the novice cook, but rest assured it is really quite easy to prepare and will leave your guests thinking you are a culinary superstar.
Not only can the dessert components be prepared in advance leaving you time to mingle with friends and family on this long weekend, the toppings can be easily adapted to suit the season and specialty diets.
Because maple syrup is in its glory days this time of year, it is only fitting to use the liquid gold in an early Spring inspired dessert. If you don't want the extra sweetness, feel free to omit the cascading syrup and instead add a little to the whipped cream. Don't like bananas? Substitute sour cherries or lightly stewed rhubarb instead. Allergic to nuts? Skip 'em! Can't have dairy? Whip coconut milk instead of heavy cream. Gluten sensitivities? There isn't any gluten in this recipe.
Have some fun in the kitchen this Easter and don't forget to send me a picture of your finished desserts to Cindy@elginharvest.ca
It's been a whirlwind of a week and a lot of changes are happening with Elgin Harvest. I've been feeling 'out of sorts' for the past few days but I'm looking forward to interacting with the crowds and friends for some much needed sharing and smiling.
For the past three years (almost four), I have been a vendor and very active volunteer with the St. Thomas Horton Farmers' Market. Through the market I've had the fortune to meet not only some incredibly unique artisans and passionate farmers, I've also had the fortune to meet and share my love of food with many of the customers that religiously attend the hustling and bustling farmers' market every Saturday morning from May through November.
St. Thomas Horton Farmers' Market is the little market that could. Run by a dedicated part-time market manager with help from generous volunteers and friends, the market is unique to this area in that it is a producer-only market. That means you either have to grow it or make it in order to be a vendor. The market is a small business incubator, has become a centralized community meeting place, and most importantly provides a lively, fun atmosphere with access to fresh and LOCAL foods and products. It's a welcomed contrast to the industrial manufacturing plants and fast food chains that can (and has) overshadowed the city in a monocultured cloud.
With Spring and the beginning of a new market season right around the corner, I know other vendors and market attendees are just itching to get back into the Saturday morning routine of picking up seasonal fruits & veggies, fresh baked goods, and artisanal crafts. While I wait for May to roll around, I'm going to make the best of my time by continuing to experiment with new recipes and culianary techniques and plan out my vegetable garden.
I'm so excited!
The latest issue of Relish Elgin magazine has been published and Elgin Harvest's recipe for Maple, Walnut & Banana Pavlova is not only included inside (on page 28), but my photo is the cover image!
You can pick up the latest issue of Relish Elgin (with Maple Pavlova!) for free in many local retail establishments.
For those in Aylmer, the magazine is available at: The Prime Ingredient, Victorian Elegance, The Flower Fountain, Clovermead, the Community Complex, and Heritage Line Herbs.
For those not close enough to pick up a printed copy, the magazine is available for viewing online at Relish Elgin's website.
You can also show Relish Elgin some love by connecting with them on Facebook, or Twitter.
Go, go local local!
Eating. Drinking. Sharing.