Jude's Kitchen anniversary treat

Mushroom and yogurt sauce with fresh dill.  - Judie Steeves/Capital News
Mushroom and yogurt sauce with fresh dill.
— image credit: Judie Steeves/Capital News

It’s been 14 years March 1 since the first Jude’s Kitchen column made an appearance in a re-designed Kelowna Capital News.

That’s 728 columns, because I’ve never missed one in all those years! Wow. That’s a lot of talk about food, isn’t it?

But, we all have to eat and many of us have families to feed. Most of our special occasions are marked with food, whether it’s an anniversary, birthday, Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving or New Year’s Eve.

We find that as the months pass, there are certain favourite dishes that mark the time of year. You know, the first chives in spring to toss into an omelette; the first tomatoes warmed by the sun, picked right off the vine in July and slapped between home made bread; a cornucopia of harvest vegetables and fruits in the fall that lead to ratatouille or fruit salad; and the wonderful apples and squashes of fall that you roast and crush into soups.

And, in each season there’s a few occasions marked with hams or barbecues, turkeys or special cuts of lamb or seafood.

We’re very lucky in B.C., which has the most diversified agriculture sector of anywhere in Canada, to be able to make whole meals with food that’s been sourced right within the boundaries of this province.

There’s so much to celebrate!

I hope you’ve been enjoying my food journey over the years and that you’ll appreciate that some of my favourite recipes from over the years are now gathered together in one place. Jude’s Kitchen, published less than a year ago by the Okanagan Institute, is available wherever books are sold, and in a few less likely places as well, like the B.C. Wine Museum and Discover Wines. That’s because fellow reporter John Schreiner, one of the country’s top wine writers, contributed his wine suggestions as margin notes to many of my recipes.



Den's Meat Dabs



These are less messy to make and way easier all around than fussing with forming them into balls and frying meatballs on the stove, yet they taste pretty much the same, if not better. Not only is there less mess and fuss, but there’s no added oil, so they’ve got to be better for you too.

Once the meat mixture is ready, just use a spoon to scoop out meatball-sized chunks and arrange them on a cookie sheet. You could substitute crumbs for the oat bran.



1 lb. (454 g) lean ground beef

1 egg

1/2 c. (125 ml) oat bran

1 tbsp. (15 ml) ketchup

1/2 tsp. (2 ml) Worcestershire Sauce

salt and pepper, to taste



Pre-heat oven to 350 F.

Combine thoroughly and use a teaspoon to place dabs on a cookie sheet.

Bake at 350 F for about 20 minutes.

Serve with a sweet and sour, barbecue or spaghetti sauce; or this yummy dill and mushroom sauce.

Serves 4.



Yogurt & Mushroom Sauce with Dill



This leans toward the Scandinavian combinations of flavours, and it's rich and delicious but easy to put together.



1 onion

8 mushrooms

1-2 garlic cloves

2 tbsp. (30 ml) fresh dill

pat of butter

1 c. (250 ml) beef broth

1 tbsp. (15 ml) Worcestershire Sauce

1 tbsp. (15 ml) cornstarch

1 tbsp. (15 ml) cold water

1/2 c. (125 ml) plain yogurt



Slice onion and mushrooms and mince garlic and dill. Dissolve cornstarch in a little cold water in a tiny bowl.

Melt a little butter in a large frypan and saute the onion and mushrooms, adding the garlic as they soften.

Add beef broth and Worcestershire Sauce. Mix well, bringing the mixture to bubbling.

Re-combine cornstarch mixture and stir it into the sauce until thickened and clear. Mix dill in.

Add yogurt or sour cream and mix well, without allowing it to boil.

Pour over hot meatballs and serve, garnished with a sprig of fresh dill.


Serves 4-5.



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