November 22, 2014

Back from Devour + a recipe for Celeriac Apple Slaw

I am still slowly coming back to reality after the whirlwind of tastes and sights that was this year's Devour Film Festival. Man. Lia Rinaldo and Michael Howell sure know how to put on a rocking food and film party, one that lasts 5 whole glorious days. 

Some of the highlights were: Anthony Bourdain (yes, just hanging out in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, no biggie), getting to finally meet the brilliant duo behind Perennial Plate (awesomest, nicest, most talented yet down-to-earth 2 people you will ever meet - have you seen the trailer to their new PBS series??), tasting various types of whiskeys and their corresponding cocktails (in my normal life, I don't even like whiskey) at the 'Fun With Mixology' workshop (I evidently had too much fun with the samples and spilled the most top-notch whiskey all over my pants, leading to a few raised eyebrows from my dining companions), the amazing Matt Armendariz and Adam Pearson's food styling workshop (check out Matt's blogpost, where he made me fall in love with my hometown all over again), and the honour of doing jury duty alongside the marvellous Lucy Waverman and Tommy Struck. What. A. Blast. 

Did I mention there were oodles of smoked mackerel? Joy.

Unfortunately for me, partying often leads to paying for it later. (And I was making some rather superhuman attempts to simultaneously attend this year's ACORN organic conference happening at the same time as Devour, an hour away in Halifax - moral of the story: don't try to be in two places at once). I'm now nursing a very unpleasant flu cold thing. Eating lots of chicken soup and salads is helping. As is mulling over the infinite possibilities of pies to potentially make for my first American Thanksgiving. More on that later. But for today, a humble salad made of two unlikely yet delightful companions: apples and celeriac.

I'm a huge fan of the rich earthy taste of celeriac (also known as celery root and tastes like a cross between celery and turnip). This slaw is a lighter twist on French celeriac remoulade which consists of grated celeriac and mayonnaise. I've added apples. parsley, and a light vinaigrette and the whole thing is very tasty and fall-like. If you've never had celeriac, this is a great way to get acquainted with it. You may also want to try my celeriac parsnip soup. Both the slaw and soup are great Thanksgiving dishes.

Get my Celeriac Apple Slaw recipe over here at PBS Food.

October 30, 2014

Homemade Pumpkin Sage Fettuccine

Call me naive but I did not understand the full extent of the pumpkin spice invasion. Until a recent trip to the city and Trader Joe's brought me face to face with an avalange of pumpkin flavoured items: pumpkin waffles, pumpkin corn chips, pumpkin beer, pumpkin iced tea, pumpkin cheese. I'm all about seasonal eating but the pumpkin thing does seem to get taken to a whole other level.

So I feel that this post needs to come with an apology for contributing to the pumpkin madness.

It seems you either jump on the pumpkin wagon or you curse it. I'm somewhere between the two, though after the mildly traumatic Trader Joe's experience and the above pumpkin horror spoof, I think I'll steer clear of pumpkin anything for a while. (Except for these healthy pumpkin caramels, which I am completely addicted to). Besides, pumpkin is wonderful, but isn't it somewhat overrated? I find most pumpkin recipes out there to be much tastier, moist, and flavourful when some variety of winter squash is used instead, be it buttercup, delicata, butternut, or any other kind of sweet fleshed winter squash. 

And so my dear friends, with that rather half-assed introduction, I give you Pumpkin Sage Fettuccine, which is actually a deliciously comforting cold weather meal. I promise. (Though I suspect it's probably even better with squash). Happy Halloween and bon app├ętit!

Find my recipe here on PBS Food.

Find my recipe here on PBS Food.

October 23, 2014

Zucchini Cheddar Hand Pies

These little hand pies came about earlier this fall, when I was looking for a new way to use up zucchini from the garden. Aren't we all always looking for a new zucchini recipe? 

Ok, I realize we ALL probably aren't and really, this one's a bit of a stretch, veering more on the butter and cheddar side of things than on the zuke side. But some days, that is just what you need. And for some people, a camo manoeuvre involving lots of cheese is the only way zucchini will go down pleasantly. So this recipe is dedicated to the world's zucchini haters. 

Now I would normally be the last person to tuck zucchini away, incognito, into pockets of melted cheese and flaky pie pastry. I'm of the "nobody puts zucchini in the corner" clan of people and I could eat the stuff every day of my life, loud and proud, fried in a little garlic and olive oil til it's soft. But I realize not everyone feels the way I do, and I made this recipe specifically for my sister, to stock up her freezer after she had her baby. And she is decidedly not a zucchini fan so this was my way of wooing her into eating it. As it turns out, the zucchini kind of melts away into the cheese, creating a gooey mess of deliciousness with only the faintest hint of the taste of zucchini.

These little guys are perfect for those days when you just need to open the freezer door and pop lunch into the oven. And as most new moms can attest to I'm sure, those days can be numerous. And so, not to brag or anything but my anti-zucchini sister declared these a smash success (in case you had any doubt about whether to make them).

My recipe can be found over here, on PBS Food.