Classic recipes have a place in every kitchen. We all have favourites that the family insists we make on a regular basis, or that we want to cook.
Sometimes it’s a habit, like always serving steak on Saturday night or stir-fries on Monday—or turkey for Christmas and ham for Easter.
The latest book from a pair of well-known Canadian food writers and authors, Rose Murray and Elizabeth Baird, is chock full of recipes for very Canadian food, from one end of the country to the other.
Canada’s Favourite Recipes, published by Whitecap Books is a collection of more than 160 classic recipes for appetizers, soups, main dishes, sides and salads, breads, sweets, preserves and candy and drinks from every part of this country.
This is a good basic book, with clear instructions and lots of versatility, offering everything from Ginger Beef Pot Roast and Sesame Cheese Crisps, to Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie and Quebec Tourtiere. In between you’ll find Pad Thai, Fiddleheads and Roast Turkey.
Following are a couple of examples of what’s available.
As well, the bread, served with mild cheeses was a great pairing with one of the wines recommended by James Nevison in his latest edition of Had a Glass 2013, top 100 wines under $20, published by Appetite by Random House.
There is a lot of information about wines and wine pairing and individual wines crammed into this little book, so it’s well worth a read.
But, there are only eight B.C. wines out of the 100, and I’m not sure whether that’s because he doesn’t feel we produce more than that that offer good value at the price, or whether he’s just determined to swim against the current of ‘buy local .’ I find it disappointing, but there are a couple of local wines mentioned, including the CedarCreek 2011 Riesling, which is fantastic; the Mission Hill 2010 Reserve Chardonnay and one of my favourites, the Quails’ Gate 2011 Chasselas Pinot Blanc-Pinot Gris.
However if you’d like to discuss that with him, your chance is coming up in a couple of days: Nevison will be here Fri., Nov. 16, 5:30 to 6:30, at Discover Wines in Orchard Plaza, a great B.C. VQA Wine Store with knowledgeable staff and lots of wine-related goodies, as well as a terrific selection of local wines.
You’ll find lots of wine pairing ideas from renowned wine writer John Schreiner in my book, Jude’s Kitchen, along with a couple of hundred recipes featuring local ingredients and organized by the seasons. Ask for it at Discover Wines or pick it up at bookstores or other wine shops.
Saucy-Bottom Lemon Pudding
Elizabeth explains this is a favourite in her family, still made from her grandmother’s batter-stained, handwritten recipe.
1 c. (250 ml) sugar, divided
3 tbsp/ (45 ml) flour
1/4 tsp. (1 ml) salt
1 c. (250 ml) milk
3 tbsp. (45 ml) butter, melted
3 large eggs, separated
1 tbsp. (15 ml) finely-grated lemon zest
1/3 c. (75 ml) lemon juice
1 1/2 c. (375 ml) blueberries
1 tbsp. (15 ml) icing sugar
In a large bowl, whisk together 3/4 c. of the sugar, the flour and the salt.
Add the milk, butter and egg yolks and whisk to combine. Whisk in the lemon zest and juice and set aside.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form and beat in the remaining sugar, a spoonful at a time, beating until stiff, shiny peaks form. Stir about a quarter of the egg white mixture into the lemon batter. Fold in the remaining egg white mixture.
Scrape into an 8-inch glass baking dish or cake pan. Place the dish in a larger shallow pan. Pour enough boiling water into the outer pan to come halfway up the sides of the dish holding the batter. Bake in the centre of a 350 F oven until the top is lightly browned and the pudding has pulled away from the sides of the dish, about 30 to 40 minutes.
Remove the dish of pudding from the outer pan and let cool on a rack to the desired temperature (still a little warm or at room temperature).
You make it ahead and refrigerate for up to a day.
Spoon into dessert bowls and top with a scattering of blueberries and a dusting of icing sugar.
Serves 6 to 8.
The authors suggest this rich, braided loaf is excellent for French toast or bread pudding, and we found it was good served warm with a Canadian brie cheese, some smoked meats and slices of local apples for a light lunch. That was excellent paired with Quails’ Gate’s 2011 Chasselas Pinot Blanc Pinot Gris, which is one of our favourite sipping wines.
2 tsp. (10 ml) sugar
3/4 c. (175 ml) lukewarm water
2 tsp (10 ml) active dry yeast
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tbsp. (30 ml) canola oil
1 tsp. (5 ml) salt
3-3 1/2 c. (750-875 ml) flour
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp. (2 ml) water
1 tbsp. (15 ml) poppy or sesame seeds
In a large bowl or stand mixer, dissolve the sugar in the water. Sprinkle the yeast over the surface and let stand until foamy and increased in volume, about 10 minutes.
Beat in the eggs, oil and salt. Beat in two cups of the flour, beating until the batter is stretchy and smooth. By hand, beat in the remaining flour, as much as is needed to make a soft, rather sticky dough. Sprinkle some of the remaining flour onto the counter, scrape the dough out onto the floured surface and knead until the dough is no longer sticky but still soft and smooth, about six to eight minutes.
Place the dough in a lightly oiled clean bowl and turn to coat the dough with a film of oil. Cover with a damp towel and place in a warm spot to rise until doubled, about an hour. Press the dough down and gather it into a ball. Cover the bowl and let it relax for five minutes.
Meanwhile, lightly oil a 9×5-inch loaf pan and set it aside. Cut the dough into three equal portions. Roll and shape each into a rope about 14 inches long. Pinch the ropes together at one end and, overlapping the ropes firmly but not tightly, braid the dough, pinching the other ends of the ropes together firmly. Fit neatly into the loaf pan, tucking the ends under. Cover the dough with lightly-oiled plastic wrap and place in a warm spot to rise until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the egg yolk and water and brush it over the top of the loaf, being careful not to let the egg wash touch the rim of the pan. Sprinkle with the poppy seeds.
Bake in the centre of a 375 F oven until golden brown and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped, about 40 minutes. Remove from the pan and let cool on a rack.