Thursday, April 29, 2010

Slow Roasted Pork Shoulder with Rosemary and Garlic

This recipe is so easy but it always turns out beautifully, with such complexity of flavours, due to the fact that it slowly simmers away for hours while all of the flavours meld. I had a Berkshire pork shoulder from Cumbrae Farms, which is perfect for this recipe as Berkshire pork has a much higher fat content than supermarket pork. If you can find it, it is always worth the extra dough!

Slow Roasted Pork Shoulder with Rosemary and Garlic

4 lb Pork Shoulder
2 heads garlic
large bunch rosemary
kosher salt
1.5 cups white whine, separated
freshly ground black pepper
1 large onion, cut into 1/4 inch rings
3/4 lb carrots, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
2 lbs baby or new potatoes
2 T flour
olive oil

Heat oven to 300 degrees. Pour about 1 T olive oil into bottom of dutch oven. Break up heads of garlic and place on bottom of dutch oven, with 1/2 of rosemary. Season pork shoulder well with salt and pepper. Place pork in dutch oven and cover with remaining garlic and rosemary. Pour 3/4 cup of wine over pork.

Cover pork with aluminum foil and then place lid of dutch oven over the foil. Roast for 5 hours. Remove pork from oven. Place vegetables and potatoes in dutch oven with pork. Season vegetables. Replace foil and lid. Roast for 1 1/2 hours longer, stirring vegetables a couple of times during this time.

When pork is done, remove pork to serving plate, tent with foil and set aside to rest. Remove vegetables and potatoes from oven and place on a baking dish. Turn on broiler of oven and broil vegetables for 5-10 minutes to give them a golden/brown colour.

Meanwhile, prepare sauce for roast: separate pan liquids from fat using a gravy separator. Pour pan drippings back into dutch oven. Combine with flour until smooth. Heat over medium high heat until very thick. Add remaining wine, bring to boil and boil sauce until clear. Season with salt and pepper.

Pork Shoulder on Foodista

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

White Pizza with Arugula

I am a sucker for homemade pizza. It is so simple, and the flavours are so worth it. It is so much better than take-away or those cardboard frozen pre-made pizzas. If you don't want to go to the trouble of making your own crust, many grocery stores sell pizza dough in the refrigerator section. Alternatively, you might be able to order some dough from your local pizzeria. Jamie Oliver's recipe is fairly fail safe, especially if you kneed it for the recommend amount (10 minutes or more). This is my version of a white pizza. I have played around with the cheeses over the years, chevre, fontina, pecorino and fior di latte all work well.

White Pizza
~ Serves 6 ~

3 cloves garlic, sliced thin
425 g ricotta cheese
1 cup shredded asiago cheese
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
4 cups baby arugula
1 oz parmesano-regiano cheese
good quality extra virgin olive oil
well aged balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper

Pre-heat a pizza stone at 500 degrees, for at least two hours prior to making the pizza.

Prepare dough according to recipe provided in link. Section dough into six equal balls. Roll out balls into roundish pizza form. Place 2 T of pesto on each pizza. Divide the ricotta among the pizzas, by the heaped spoonful. Divide the remaining cheese and tomatoes among the pizzas.

Bake pizzas for 7-8 minutes or until crust is bubbled and golden brown.

Toss arugula with olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper. Divide among pizzas.

Serve hot!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Bangers and Mash with Guinness Onion Gravy

I want nothing more than comfort food on a Monday. Bangers and Mash is traditional English comfort food at it's best! I had purchased four gorgeous goat and pork sausages during my goat dairy discovery on Friday of last week and I was thinking about a yummy prep for them when, on Sunday, I was brought 4 equally beautiful chicken sausages from Cumbrae's Toronto butcher shop, my souvenir from a family member's weekend jaunt to the city! I thought, why not combine the two and make bangers and mash? Bliss on a weeknight!

Bangers and Mash with Guinness Onion Gravy
~serves 4~

1 large onion or 2 regular sized onions, chopped into small rings
1 T olive oil
1 T butter
handful of thyme
1 Large can Guinness
1 cup beef/lamb stock
8 sausages
1/3 cup low fat sour cream
salt and pepper to taste

6-8 red skin potatoes, chopped roughly
2 T butter
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup whole milk
salt and pepper to taste

Heat butter and olive oil over medium low heat in a large, heavy bottomed frying pan. Add onions, season well with salt and pepper. Saute over low heat for 40 minutes or until onions have slowly caramelized and are golden brown. Add thyme and mix well. Poke small holes in the sausage and add to pan. Add beer and stock, stir to cover sausages. Cover pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low, partially cover and simmer for 45 minutes or until sausages have cooked through and gravy has reduced to a thickened sauce.

Cover potatoes with cold water. Add about 2 T salt to water. Bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer and cook until potatoes are soft (about 20 minutes). Drain potatoes. Heat milk, butter and bay leaf over medium high heat until almost at a boil. Remove bay leaf and pour over dry potatoes. Mash to preferred consistency. Season to preference with salt and pepper.

Enjoy with your favourite ice cold pint!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Smoked Salmon and Chevre Quiche

I originally made this recipe with "Indian Candy" which is a somewhat derogative term for maple smoked salmon. However, this morning I found myself without. I did, however, have some sustainable smoked wild caught keta salmon on hand. If you want some veggies added, sauted spinach with nutmeg is a great addition.

I have used the pastry recipe that my mother used for years, however a butter based pastry recipe would be equally as good.

Indian Candy and Chevre Quiche:

2 Cups all purpose flour
1 t salt
1/2 cup shortnening
1/2 cup lard
1 egg
1 T white vinegar
2 T cold water

Sift flour and salt. Cut fats into flour mixture with pastry cutter. In a separate bowl, combine remaining liquids. Pour liquids over flour mixture and combine with fork until mixture just comes together. Pour out onto floured surface. Divide into two disks. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until needed. Makes two pie crusts or one double pie crust.


5 eggs
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
2 T chopped chives
3 cups fresh baby spinach, wilted
1 shallot
1 T olive oil
1 clove garlic
1/2 t fresh nutmeg
250 grams smoked salmon
1 cup chevre
salt and pepper

Combine first three ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on high until well mixed. Saute shallots, garlic, salt and pepper in olive oil until soft. Roll out pie crust and fit to spring-form pan and chill for 20 min. Crumble the cheese, and salmon onto the chilled base of a pie crust.

Pour egg mixture over the crust. Cook in 400 degree oven for approximately 35- 45 minutes, or until centre is puffed and set.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Goat Butter Tarts = delicious!

I am a big fan of goat cheese. I could eat Chevre on my cereal. So, imagine my surprise when traveling home from Markham on Friday evening, on a road that has not been uncommon to me over the past few years, that I should happen to notice a sign for a farm store advertising fresh goat milk and cheese ... and it was open!!! I slammed on the brakes, pulled over to the side, turned the car around and pulled into the drive. I was met by two sweet little pups making my arrival known to the owner of the farm Ms. Wilman.

River's Edge Goat Dairy, located just East of Arthur, Ontario, is a working goat farm that produces the most beautiful fresh goat cheese (Mediterranean and Chevre), goat milk yogurt, fresh goat milk, goat meat, farm raised free range eggs, and, yes, goat butter tarts. They also produce a line of home-made goat milk soaps and moisturizing creams, including a fragrance free line for those of us with sensitive skin.
The farm is pesticide free and the goats are pasture raised with no growth hormones. They are beautiful little darlings. After purchasing my goods, about half of the store, I went out to the side barn to meet the baby goats. Most of them were only a few days old, and they were so cute.

The farm won the blue ribbon for their cheeses this year at the Royal Winter Fair and their accolades are well deserved as their Chevre is one of the best I have ever tasted: creamy, slightly sour, a little bit salty and incredibly smooth. I have to stop day-dreaming and driving ... I wonder what else I have missed?

Roasted Rainbow Trout with Quinoa and Greens

This is one of my go to, weeknight recipes... it is fast, nutritious and quite soul satisfying!

Quinoa, pronounced Keen-wa, is an ancient grain that has been a popular food staple in South America for thousands of years. It is easy to prepare (it follows the same prep as rice) and has a nutty, fluffy, creamy texture when cooked! It is also one the most nutritious grains/cereals/seeds on the market today, loaded with protein, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus!

If you can't find quinoa, I have often substituted whole wheat couscous or bulgur wheat, both are equally delicious!

Roasted Rainbow Trout
2 sides rainbow trout
1 lemon, sliced thin
1/2 bunch dill (or another fresh herb)
sat and freshly ground black pepper
olive oil
butcher's twine

Preheat oven to 4oo degrees. Liberally salt and pepper both sides of trout. Place one side of trout on baking dish, skin side down. Place half of dill (or other herb) over trout, followed by slices of lemon, remaining half of herb and then remaining half of trout. Tie sides together with butchers twine. Brush with olive oil. Roast for 15 minutes or until done to your liking.


1 cup organic quinoa
2 cups organic free range chicken stock
1 t salt
1 t olive oil
zest of one lemon
3 T dill chopped fine

Bring quinoa, chicken stock, salt and olive oil to boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off heat and let rest, covered, for 5 minutes. Fluff with fork. Add zest and dill and stir to combine.

1 T olive oil
3 cloves garlic
2 medium bunches greens (I used rainbow chard), chopped
1 T butter
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 T lemon juice

Heat butter and olive oil over medium high heat until melted. Add garlic and greens. Season with salt and pepper. Saute until wilted. Finish with lemon juice.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Sage Polenta Stuffed Roasted Cornish Game Hens with Greens

Cornish game hens are basically little chickens, brought to market at a younger age. The flavour is very similar and the quality will depend upon who you purchased them from, as is true of regular chickens. I love them, every once in a while, because it is such a treat to get your own individual bird. I purchased these beautiful little birds from Hilltop Acres Poultry at the St. Jacob's farmers market.

If you have leftover polenta, slice up pieces and fry them in a little bit of butter or olive oil. This is a great base for a quick dinner when topped with fried mushrooms or tomato sauce.

Sage Polenta Stuffed Roasted Cornish Game Hens with Greens
3 T olive oil, divided
1/4 cup sage leaves, chopped fine
2 shallots, minced
5 cloves garlic, minced, divided
1 1/2 cups course grind corn meal
1 cup dry white wine or vermouth, divided
4 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cups parmigiano-reggiano cheese
1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
1 T butter, for baking pan
4 Cornish game hens
1 or 2 large bunches Red Swiss Chard (or another green), chopped
2 T flour
salt and pepper

Heat 2 T olive oil over medium high heat. Add shallots and 3 T garlic. Cook until soft. Add sage and brown. Add 1/2 cup wine and deglaze pan. Add stock and bring to a boil. When liquid is boiling, add corn meal, a little bit at a time while whisking vigorously.

Once all of the cornmeal has been added, continue to whisk for at least two minutes to ensure there are no lumps in polenta. Reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for 40-45 minutes longer over low heat, stirring well with a wooden spoon, every 5 minutes. Once polenta is soft, turn off heat and add cheeses. Adjust seasonings to taste. Butter a 9" x 13" glass baking pan and pour polenta into pan, smooth top. Place in refrigerator for at least one hour to set up.

Heat oven to 450 degrees.

Once polenta is set. Cut into 1 inch cubes. Wash hens inside and out and dry well. Season the inside of the birds with salt and pepper. Stuff with polenta cubes. Truss feet together with string. Liberally coat outside of birds with butter or olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Place birds in roasting pan, and place in oven. Immediately reduce heat of oven to 375 degrees. Roast birds for one hour.

When birds are almost finished, heat 1 T olive oil over medium high heat. Add remaining 2 T garlic to pan and fry until fragrant. Add stems of greens to pan and saute until browned. Add leaves of greens to pan and saute until wilted.

When birds are finished roasting remove them from their roasting pan and set aside, tented with tin foil, to rest. Add flour to roasting pan and mix with drippings until dissolved. Place roasting pan over medium high heat. Add remaining 1/2 cup white wine and stir until brown bits from pan have been incorporated into the flour and wine mixture. Add water (or any leftover chicken stock) to loosen gravy. Bring to a boil and stir until flour has been cooked out of gravy, about 5 minutes. Adjust seasonings. Pour into gravy boat.

Serve birds with greens and gravy alongside.

Monday, April 19, 2010

lamb burgers

I had a craving for lamb burgers, and we wanted to try out our new meat grinder, so we purchased a leg of lamb and made our own ground lamb. The meat was fantastic! Just enough fat to make the burgers juicy and flavourful. I have made the burger recipe below with many different types of fresh herbs: chives, mint, rosemary and oregano all work very well.

Lamb Burgers
2 lbs freshly ground lamb meat
1 egg
2 T plain yogurt
2 T dijon mustard
1/3 cup fresh breadcrumbs
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 T fresh dill, chopped well
large pinch salt
large pinch freshly ground black pepper
6-8 portabella mushrooms
250 grams goat cheese (chevre)

Combine ingredients and shape into patties that are as large or small as you like. Grill over high heat until done to your likeness. Meanwhile, grill the portabella mushrooms, gill side down and then flip to grill opposite side. Top with 2 T chevre, per mushroom. Serve mushrooms over burgers on a multigrain roll!

Spring is here ... lets go for a hike!

We went for a walk on the Tiger Dunlop Heritage Trail in Goderich yesterday. It was my first time on the trail this year. It has become an early spring ritual and a path that I return to over the warm seasons whenever I find the time, or need, to get outside to enjoy the air. The trail begins along the old CNR bridge and follows the river for a few kilometres of gravel pathway, overlooking the river valley. Everything is in early bloom, flower buds are emerging on the trees, mallard ducks flirt with their partners, and rainbow trout dodge devoted fishermen as they make their way upstream to spawn.

As you can see I am feeling a bit poetic and excited about the new season. We purchased our first vegetable seeds today for our garden this year and I placed my order for heirloom tomato plants. I can't wait to start planting!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Fresh pasta with spring artichokes, asparagus, pine nuts and goat cheese

As promised, here is my recipe for artichoke pasta with goat cheese. You can make it with store-bought fresh pasta, or dry pasta (white or whole wheat), but making fresh pasta is much easier than it sounds, and it can be quite comforting as kneading the dough can be quite a therapeutic way to work out the days stresses!

I have used multiple recipes over the years for fresh pasta, but the easiest (never fail) recipe is from Italian home cooking guru Lidia Matticchio Bastianich's book Lidia's Family Table. Here is the recipe:
Fresh Pasta
2 cups all purpose flour
2 jumbo free range eggs
4 T good quality olive oil
3 T cold water
pinch sea salt

Make a well in the middle of the flour. Add remaining ingredients to well.

Slowly mix egg mixture into flour. Incorporating sides of well into egg mixture until fully incorporated.

Kneed for 5-10 minutes or until pasta is soft and springs back when pressed. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and let rest, at room temperature, for at least 30 minutes (or refrigerate overnight if you are preparing in advance).

Divide pasta into three sections. Roll out pasta and cut into lengths according to your preference.

Pasta with Spring Artichokes, Asparagus, Pine Nuts and Goat Cheese

2 T olive oil
2 T butter, unsalted
2 cloves garlic, minced
5-7 baby artichoke hearts, quartered
5-10 sprigs of asparagus, bottom shaved and tough ends removed, cut into 2 inch pieces
zest of one lemon
1 large glass dry white wine or dry vermouth
1/4 cup free range chicken stock (or vegetable stock)
1/3 cup mascarpone cheese
4 T goat cheese
1/4 cup fresh chives, minced
pasta recipe (above)
freshly ground pepper and sea salt

Toast pine nuts in a dry pan over high heat until browned, remove and set aside. Heat oil and butter over medium high heat. Add garlic, artichoke hearts, asparagus and lemon zest. Saute until softened. Add wine and stock. Reduce by half. Add mascarpone and pine nuts and stir until cheese is melted. Adjust seasonings. Cook pasta for 2-3 minutes in salted boiling water. Reserve 1-2 cups pasta water and drain pasta. Add pasta to vegetables and toss. Add reserved pasta water if pasta seems dry. Serve sprinkled with goat cheese and chives.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Baby Artichoke Risotto with Lemon Thyme

I first made this recipe while living in Florence, Italy for the summer after my second year of law school. We had a gorgeous produce shop, two doors down from our apartment, and we would stop in daily to see what was fresh and seasonal so that we could plan our night's dinner around the ingredients. One spring day they had a beautiful display of purple baby artichokes. I brought a huge bag of them home and made this risotto that night and a fantastic pasta the following evening (I promise to provide that recipe at a later date!).

Spring baby artichokes are just starting to emerge at farmer's markets across the province. I was going to prepare some pictures on how to clean them but I think this fantastic slide show provides more than enough assistance on the subject.

If you would like to make this dish vegetarian, you can easily substitute chicken broth for vegetable broth.

~ Serves 4 ~

Baby Artichoke Risotto with Lemon Thyme
2 T olive oil
2 shallots, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 t lemon thyme, removed from stems
5-7 baby artichoke hearts, quartered
3 hand-fulls arborio rice
1 large glass dry white wine or dry vermouth
4-5 cups free range chicken stock
2 oz parmigiano-reggiano, grated finely
sea salt and freshly grated black pepper

  1. Heat chicken broth over high heat until boiling, reduce heat and keep reserved at a simmer.
  2. Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and shallots and saute until golden.
  3. Add artichoke hearts and saute until browned.
  4. Add thyme and rice and mix until rice is translucent. Season rice with salt and pepper.
  5. Add wine, scrape up all the brown bits and stir until absorbed into rice.
  6. Add the broth to the rice mixture, one ladle at a time, stirring after each addition until the liquid is fully absorbed before you add the next ladle full.
  7. After about 20-25 minutes, start to taste the rice. Add small ladles of broth until the rice is al dente, or the texture you prefer.
  8. Add parmesan and stir until melted. Adjust seasonings.
  9. Serve with shavings of parmesan.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Broiled Miso and Maple Glazed Salmon with Sesame Noodles and Bitter Greens

Miso is one of the most under-appreciated ingredients in the North American diet. However, it is super easy to use in a variety of ways beyond the ubiquitous soup (don't get me wrong, I adore the clean flavours of a great bowl of miso soup).

This delicious classic combines four things that I am trying to get more of in my diet, omega 3 rich fatty fish, buckwheat (soba noodles), greens, and miso. The salty/earthy flavours of this dish pair well with a white wine that has bright citrus flavours or with a crisp, dry beer such as Asahi dry.

Serves 4

Broiled Miso and Maple Glazed Salmon

4 6 oz salmon fillets
3 T miso (white)
1 T soy sauce
1 t sesame oil
1 T dry sherry
1 T rice wine vinegar
1 T maple syrup (or honey)
black pepper

Combine ingredients, spread over salmon. Place over rack on second from top position. Broil salmon for 8-10 minutes or until done to your liking.

Sesame Noodles with Bitter Greens
2-3 T tahini paste
1 T dark sesame oil
juice and zest of one lime
3 T chicken stock
2 T dark soy sauce
2 t honey
2 or 3 thai bird chilies (or 2 t sriracha chili sauce)
1 T fresh ginger, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced, divided
1 large bunch bitter greens (examples: kale, chard or rapini), chopped coarsely
2 t vegetable oil
1/2 sweet pepper, julienne
1 16 oz package soba noodles
salt and black pepper
black sesame seeds

Combine first eight ingredients as well as 2 garlic cloves in a bowl, whisk well. Cook noodles according to package directions, drain and rinse with cold water. Add oil to skillet add greens, season and stir-fry until soft. Add greens to cold noodles. Add sweet pepper. Toss with dressing.

Serve fish over noodles, sprinkled with black sesame seeds.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Beef Satay with Mango Mint Salad

I love refreshing, tangy, crunchy mango salad. This version was taught to me during a recent mother-daughter Thai cooking lesson at the Calphalon Culinary Center in Toronto. It's an easy summer-time (or any-time) dinner salad. It's also great for guests as the salad can be assembled and the satays marinated and skewered the day before, (just make sure to keep the salad dressing separate and add just before serving). Just grill the satay and you're ready to relax!

You are welcome substitute lamb/chicken/shrimp/scallops etc. for the beef.
Don't worry if you don't have all of the ingredients for the salad, just combine what you have on hand and don't stress. You can substitute green apples or papaya for the mango if you like.

This recipe is fantastic served with an ice cold Hoegaarden.
serves 4

Beef Satay:
1 lb beef sirloin or tenderloin, cut into 16 even strips
3 cloves garlic
1 2" piece lemongrass, minced
1/4 cup fresh cilantro/mint, chopped fine
1 t cracked black pepper
1 t ground cumin
1 t ground coriander
1 T brown sugar or honey
1 T soy sauce
juice of 1 lime/ 1 T tamarind pulp
1 T sesame oil
2 T vegetable oil

combine ingredients, marinate beef for at least 15 minutes or overnight. skewer onto soaked wooden skewers and grill (1-2 minutes per side) over med-high heat.

Mango Mint Salad

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar or honey
1 T sesame oil
2 T vegetable oil
2 T soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T fresh ginger, minced
juice and zest from 2 limes
2 T mint/cilantro

1 Mango, peeled, pit removed, julienne
1/8 Napa cabbage, shredded
1/2 cup carrot, peeled and julienne (or shred)
1/2 cup English cucumber, seeded, julienne
1/2 daikon radish, peeled, julienne (optional)
1/2 cup red onion, julienne
2 T basil/mint leaves, chiffonade
2 T peanuts, roasted and chopped (optional)

Combine all ingredients for vinaigrette and set aside. Mix together all salad ingredients. Toss with as much vinaigrette as you like. Serve with satay.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Marinated Anchovies

Fresh anchovy fillets, marinated in lemon, olive oil, apple cider vinegar and sea salt.

I discovered how easy it was to make my own marinated anchovies on a recent trip to the Amalfi coast. We stayed in a small village called Praiano, and became well acquainted with the local fish monger, who provided us with these beautiful little fishes.


one kilo (two pounds) fresh anchovies, cleaned
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
juice of 4 large lemons
3 T apple cider vinegar
1 T sea salt
handful fresh lemon leaves or fresh parsley for garnish (optional)

Wash and dry anchovies and set aside in a large shallow bottomed bowl. Combine the next four ingredients and pour over anchovies. Leave to marinate overnight in fridge. Serve garnished with fresh parsley or lemon leaves, with hearty Italian bread for dipping in the beautiful oil.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Seasonal Ingredient Map

Interactive map allows users to view what produce is fresh in their area, by season!
(Unfortunately it's an American map, but I think it is a useful tool as some Canadian growing seasons are similar to the Northern States).

Fast Lunch Stir-Fry

Aka "leftover stir-fry" this noodle based stir-fry is a fast way to use up leftovers the next day for lunch or a fast dinner. Use whatever veg and leftover protein (tofu, chicken, turkey, steak, shrimp .. you get the idea) you have on hand. Play around with the sauce to your taste.

splash of canola oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 red pepper, sliced thin
1 cup shredded carrot
1 green onion, sliced thin
1/2 cup leftover roast chicken, shredded into bite sized pieces
1 package fresh egg noodles
1 T dark sesame oil
2 T rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup chicken broth
2 T dark soy sauce
1 t Sriracha chili sauce
3 T oyster sauce
1 T honey
1/4 cup mint, shredded

heat oil in wok over medium high heat. add garlic, and veg and stir-fry for 2 minutes. add leftover chicken, noodles and remaining ingredients (other than mint), and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes or until sauce is almost dry. add mint and serve.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Pork Tenderloin with Dijon Sour Cream Pan Sauce.

This recipe is very fast for a mid-week dinner. You can easily substitute butterflied chicken breasts, or a pork chop for the tenderloin, if you prefer.

~ serves 4 ~

2 pork tenderloins, silverskin removed, cut in half
2 shallots, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup white wine / dry vermouth
2 T dijon mustard
1 T grainy mustard
juice from half of a lemon
1/2 cup 5% sour cream
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Season the tenderloin halves with salt and pepper. Heat pan over high heat. Add a splash of olive oil. Sear all sides of tenderloin. Remove tenderloin from pan and place on baking sheet. Bake for 8-12 minutes, or until internal temperature reads 160 degrees.
Meanwhile, reduce heat to medium. Add shallots and garlic, saute until soft. add wine and reduce by half, add chicken stock and reduce by half. Remove from heat, whisk in mustard, lemon juice and sour cream. Check seasonings and adjust accordingly. Serve tenderloin with sauce.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

St. Jacobs Farmer's Market ...

St. Jacobs Farmer's Market, has always been one of my favourite markets in the province. It's open year round on Thursdays and Saturdays, as well as Tuesdays from June to Labour Day (7:00 AM - 3:00 PM). Located in the community of St. Jacobs, about 10 minutes north of Waterloo, it showcases local produce, meats, cheeses, baking and food staples such as local maple syrup, honey and canned goods. It's also a great place to purchase locally made arts and crafts such as quilts, knit clothing and Mennonite furniture. The majority of the produce, baking and craft items come from local Mennonite farmers, however there are non-Mennonite farmers that travel from as far as the Niagara region, to showcase their items. In the warmer months, there are many more vendors who set up stands in the parking areas that surround the main market building, expanding choices for fresh produce. Inside the market are many permanent stalls that have been there for generations.

Some of my favourite places include:

Hilltop Acres poultry products

Specializing in Free-Run, no growth hormone poultry products, this family run business produces beautiful farm fresh eggs, chickens, capons, turkey, geese and duck. You may also special order partridge, quail and cornish hens. We have purchased our Thanksgiving and Christmas Turkeys from this location for many years.

Charles Quality Meats:
An abattoir out of St. Agatha, Ontario, Charles Quality produces gorgeous naturally raised lamb, beef, pork, veal, goat and rabbit. The butcher is also one of only two abattoirs in Ontario that raises the meat that it processes. They also grow their own hay, pesticide and chemical free, which they use to feed their animals.

Cinnamon buns, made fresh throughout the morning by Mennonite ladies, sweet, warm and melty!

Beautiful local produce:

Maple Syrup:

Market goodies: