Dolmadákia

I was first introduced to dolmadákia, or dolmas, at Colossus of Rhodes, a Greek tavern in Mississauga, Ontario. My best friend and I, big-haired and single in those days, loved the place and enjoyed coaxing gossip from the bartender about the dark, handsome, and very single owner, Manny, who made us feel as if we […]

Cured Salmon

I first cured salmon at culinary school where I learned to scale, gut and fillet whole fish.  If you’ve ever peeled fish scales from your cheeks or plucked them from your hair, you’ll know that scaling fish is a messy job. Fortunately, fresh salmon is readily available scaled and filleted, making the curing process simple […]

Cranberry Jelly

My holiday mantra this year is “keep it simple” and these sparkling jellies are simplicity in a glass. Made of cranberry juice and a splash of Grand Marnier, these grown-up jellies are both sweet and tart. I’ve dusted the rims of sherry glasses with fine sugar before pouring in the fortified juice. Once the gelatin […]

Beef Carpaccio

Ever wondered how to slice raw beef so thin it practically melts on your tongue?  I considered Beef Carpaccio strictly restaurant fare until I discovered how easy it is to prepare.  All you need is a sharp knife, plastic wrap and something with weight, like the bottom of a small saucepan, to flatten the beef. […]

Warm Olives & Chèvre

If you show up at my door unexpected, and plan to stay for a while, you’ll be served warm marinated olives. Tucked in the side compartment of the fridge, right between the mustard and pickles, you’ll find a Mason jar full of olives in flavoured oil. I’ll grab a small saucepan and tip the olives […]

Pommes Dauphine

Pommes Dauphine is just a fancy way of saying potato fritters.   Except these are no ordinary fritters. This is what you get when you combine mashed potatoes with choux pasty, the very dough that gives us gougères and éclairs and all sorts of wonderful French pastries.   The dough is fashioned into little oval […]

Gougères

Gourgeres Recipe

If I have a signature appetizer, it is gougères (pronounced goo-zhairs) — an irresistibly light French pastry, made with Gruyère cheese.  I’ve made thousands, maybe more.  I served them warm at the start of each cooking class, filling my teaching kitchen with the enticing aroma of freshly baked pastry. I’m convinced it was the warm gougères […]