Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Seriously Good Baguette

I love baguette! In general I've been trying to cut back on bread but I've found a baguette that I'll make an exception for. 'Naked Appy Bread' by A Bread Affair is an incredible baguette that is as good, if not better, than any baguette I've had in Paris. My husband and I go through several a week.

A Bread Affair was created in 2006 by master baker Tanya Belanger. She had a desire to make the best tasting and best quality bread in British Columbia and she has succeeded. Each loaf is organic and is lovingly hand crafted by a small group of artisan bakers she has carefully selected and trained herself.

What I love about the Naked Appy Bread (in addition to the taste, of course!) is how versatile it is. It makes a great sandwich, top notch garlic bread, killer appetizers and, on the rare occasion if the loaf doesn't get eaten in the first day or two, it can easily be made into crostini. Lately I've been serving it with stew and it's a super yummy way to sop up all the juices.

The photo above features slices of the Naked Appy Bread with edamame-cilantro-jalepeno hummus, one topped with sundried tomato and artichoke heart, the other with slivered carrot.

A Bread Affair on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Recipe For Quiche

Quiche is such a versatile and easy-to-make dish that can be served for brunch, lunch, dinner or even a quick snack. While you can make the crust from scratch, I think there is no shame in keeping a ready-made pie crust in the freezer for times when you need to whip up a meal in a pinch. This is one of my favourite dishes because it is so easy to make and it tastes impressive.

Yam, Onion & Mushroom Quiche

Ingredients: 1/2 medium onion, 1 small to medium yam or sweet potato, 8-10 field mushrooms, 1 tbsp olive oil, 3 eggs, 3/4 cup milk, pinch of salt and pepper.

Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Thaw your pie shell if using a frozen shell. Chop up the onion, yam and mushroom. I chop the onion into strips, but you can dice it or finely chop it depending on what texture you like best. The yam should be thin enough so that it cooks at the same pace as the onion and mushroom. Heat in a skillet with olive oil until golden brown. Let your filling cool a little and then add to the pie shell. Whisk together the three eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Pour into the pie shell. Bake until golden brown, about 45 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean.

Serve with a salad & enjoy!

For a printable version of this recipe and many other fabulous quiche recipes please visit my Squidoo page Recipe For Quiche: Delicious and Easy to Make.

Sunday, 13 May 2012

What Is Pesto? How Do You Make It?

What Is Pesto?

Pesto is an Italian sauce from the Genoa region derived from fresh basil leaves, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, salt & pepper.

Pesto traditionally was used as a flavouring agent for soup but now is best known for use in pasta, sandwiches and wraps. You can use it on pizza, as a marinade for chicken or to add some colour to your scrambled eggs. Green eggs and ham anyone? Combined with yogurt it makes a creamy dip for artichokes (this recipe is cost effective using walnuts in the place of pine nuts).

Pesto was originally made using a mortar and pestle , a technique that was used to maximize the flavour of the basil leaves, but nowadays it is usually made in the food processor.

If you're looking for a traditional pesto recipe, then you'll find a great one at 101Cookbooks called How To Make Pesto Like An Italian Grandmother.

For a fun twist on the original, try Rachael Ray's Asparagus and Pistachio Pesto.

Photo used under Creative Commons from bloggyboulga

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Tomato Salad

Tomato Salad Recipe

This is one of my favourite salads and is so quick and east to make.  Cherry tomatoes are very flavourful and are also rich in lycopene. Defined as an antioxidant, lycopene helps to prevent diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis and cataracts while helping to keep skin looking vibrant and youthful.

Although it is not yet scientifically proven, some scientists suggest that the body's absorption of lycopene is increased when tomatoes are in contact with oil. That makes this salad a perfect source for lycopene.

Cherry tomatoes (1/2 pint per person)
Green Onion (1 per person)
Feta Cheese
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Freshly Cracked Pepper

Chop cherry tomatoes in half and green onion into small segments. Crumble the feta over the salad (I like to use goat feta, but you can use cow or sheep feta as well). Add pepper and drizzle with olive oil.


Thursday, 10 May 2012

What is Aioli? How Do You Make It?

Aioli is a classic French sauce typically made with extra virgin olive oil, egg yolks, garlic, salt and pepper. Aioli is often used to add flavour to sandwiches and wraps or as a dipping sauce for yam fries, veggies, fish or artichokes.

In culinary terms, aioli is an emulsion which is a mixture of two or more ingredients that normally don't coexist. Oil and vinegar or oil and lemon juice are examples of emulsions. In the case of aioli, it is the egg yolk and olive oil that wouldn't normally coexist. But, unlike the previous examples, aioli is a permanent emulsion - it won't separate after time whereas you will always have to shake your salad dressings before each use.

For a relatively quick (it does require a little prep time) and no fuss version using ready made mayonnaise and roasted garlic, check out my Cheater's Aioli recipe.

If you are looking to make your aioli from scratch, then a great article is 'How To Make Mayonnaise, Aioli and Their Derivatives'. Not only will you find out how to make aioli and mayonnaise from scratch, there are also some recipes for salad dressings such as Thousand Island, Blue Cheese, and Ranch Dressing.

Of course, you can also never go wrong with a Jamie Oliver Aioli Recipe.

Photo used under Creative Commons from jules:stonesoup

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Welcome to Embrace the Palate!

Simply put, this is a blog about food.  The enjoyment, appreciation and beauty of food.  In upcoming posts I will be chatting about food, posting some of my own recipes and providing links for some of the best recipes I've found on the web.