It’s patio season – which means having some great nibbles in your repertoire that are easy to pull out and assemble without turning on the oven. These little bundles of joy are similar to the prosciutto wrapped melon of the eighties – the addition of a chunk of creamy brie puts them over the top.
- 24 1 inch thick cubes of seedless watermelon
- 24 1 inch square thin slices of brie (the same dimensions as the watermelon)
- 24 thin slices prosciutto
- Place a piece of Brie on top of each watermelon square and wrap each with a slice of ham. Pinch ham together at the top to form a bow. Secure with a frilly toothpick (or not). Done.
A new cookbook by Katie Webster celebrates real maple syrup – it’s so Canadian, eh? Maple: 100 Sweet and Savory Recipes Featuring Pure Maple Syrup is right up our alley – maple season came early this year, and our shelves are stocked with the sweet stuff from our neighbours out east. The hardcover cookbook is gorgeous, packed with recipes from appies to desserts – and of course breakfast – using pure maple syrup in ways we’d never have thought of.
This balsamic-spiked caramelized onion pizza caught our eye immediately – perfect for home entertaining, it’s easy to make, and the maple drizzle really brings it to a whole new level.
- 1 tablespoon organic canola oil
- 1 large sweet onion, sliced
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- ½ teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 2 tablespoons cornmeal
- All-purpose flour for dusting
- Maple Wheat Pizza Dough, or your favorite store-bought dough
- 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar (4 ounces)
- 2 ounces crumbled feta, preferably reduced fat
- 2 tablespoons pepitas
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 3 cups loosely packed baby arugula (2 ounces)
- 2 tablespoons dark pure maple syrup
- 1. Place oil in a medium saucepan. Add onion, cover, and place over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, 12 to 15 minutes, until onion is soft and starting to brown. Reduce heat to medium-low if they are browning too much before softening. Stir in vinegar and thyme, cover, remove from heat, and set aside while you prepare the pizza.
- 2. Place a rack in the bottom position of the oven. Preheat oven to 450°F. Coat a large rimmed baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and sprinkle with cornmeal. Dust clean work surface with flour. Roll out dough to the size of the baking sheet and transfer to the sheet.
- 3. Spread caramelized onions over dough. Top with cheddar and feta. Sprinkle with pepitas, salt, and pepper.
- 4. Bake, rotating once halfway through, 13 to 16 minutes, until crust is crispy and cheese is bubbling and just starting to turn golden. Remove from oven. Scatter arugula over pizza and drizzle with syrup. Cut into 8 pieces and serve.
Summer is (almost) here – depending on where you live – and watermelons are starting to fill up produce shelves. We love a good watermelon salad – that juicy, sweet crunch goes so well with so many other ingredients – it’s a great way to rehydrate and delivers a healthy dose of lycopene. Here’s a unique salad for this long weekend’s backyard barbecue – it’s sure to be popular all summer long!
This is a little tweak on the original ladies’ recipe for Korean Chicken Salad. It’s got all of the rich soy sauce flavour (with a little bit of spice) of the original, with a couple modern updates. This meal-sized salad easily makes a full dinner for a family of four — if you don’t like iceberg lettuce, switch it out for your favourite green.
This here is a combination of things I love: shrimp, cream, citrus, spices. Fresh mint and cilantro. It’s like an easy sort of curry, but not heavy, and quick to toss on the grill. I love things that are easy to grill, and don’t require you to hover nervously with your tongs, meat thermometer at the ready. While the apple trees are in bloom, I’m inviting some friends and neighbours for mojitos in the back yard, and these will be on the menu.
For the 2016 edition of the Grate Canadian Cheese Cook-Off, our friend Chef Nicole Gomes was one of four of Canada’s top chefs to battle it out with their best gourmet Mac & Cheese recipe. The contenders all look amazing, but we gave Nicole’s a try – a 5 cheese version made with a splash of beer and a unique twist: grated apples, sauteed in butter. It was delicious, of course, and fed the family very well tonight. Thanks Nicole – and thanks Canadian cheese!