All posts by Bonnie Mo

Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada's Food Fetish column. She's also a contributing editor over at slice.ca.

Orecchiette with Homemade Ricotta and Cherry Tomatoes

The first time I tried making ricotta from scratch I was about 300-years pregnant with my second child and in some weird hormone-induced frenzy, it drove me mad halfway into the night trying to make my own cheese.

A happy ending being the clincher to this story, I finally made it and it was truly spectacular. Despite a few hiccups the process was not that difficult. You only need four ingredients and at the end of the day, homemade ricotta is hands-down worth making yourself. It’s rich and creamy and has none of that grittiness that comes with buying it off the shelf.

So I ended up making it three times in one night the first time. I’ll tell you what I did wrong, so you can spare yourself some craziness.

homemade_ricotta

Things to Watch Out For When Making Homemade Ricotta

– Make sure your cheesecloth is folded enough so that your luscious ricotta curds don’t slip right through the holes, resulting in no cheese.
– Let your milk/cream mixture come very slowly, almost to a simmer. Rushing this part by cranking the heat will result in no cheese.
– Make sure you add enough lemon juice, especially when you’ve already tried making ricotta twice in one night. Not going out to get more lemons when you know you should will result in—you guessed it—no cheese.

Luckily my misadventures in cheese-making means you won’t (or shouldn’t, because…hello? No cheese!) make the same rookie mistakes I did, and that your ricotta-making experience will be a breeze.

Because once you’ve made your own, going back to the stuff in the tub won’t be the same. Trust me when I say you’ll be scrambling to find things to smear it on. I like it tossed with steaming hot, just-from-the-pot orrichette pasta, with spinach, halved cherry tomatoes, chopped shallots and a healthy whack of basil, like this:

orecchiette_finished

Homemade Ricotta Cheese

Ingredients:
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups whole milk
1/2 Tbsp kosher salt
3 Tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice

Directions:
1. Set a large, fine mesh sieve over a deep bowl. Line the sieve with the two layers of cheesecloth.
2. Slowly bring milk, cream and salt to a simmer, stirring occasionally. This step can take as long as 20-25 minutes.
3. Turn off the heat and add lemon juice.
4. Allow the curds to separate from the whey. About 3 minutes.
5. Gently pour the mixture into the cheesecloth-lined sieve and let stand until all the liquid has passed through and your left with only the curds.
6. The longer you let it stand, the dryer the ricotta. I like it somewhere in the middle.

Orecchiette with Homemade Ricotta and Cherry Tomatoes

orecchiette_ingredients

Ingredients:
1 clove garlic
1 pint of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 small shallot, minced
2 cups baby spinach, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp quality olive oil
3-4 large basil leaves
1/2 cup, homemade ricotta
1 pound, orecchiette
Cracked black pepper and sea salt

Directions:
1. Cook orecchiette according to directions on the box.
2. Meanwhile, assemble garlic, shallot, tomatoes and spinach in a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and add cracked black pepper and sea salt. Set aside to marinate.
3. Drain pasta and pour over tomato/spinach mixture. Add ricotta to hot mixture and stir. Add a bit of the pasta water to loosen up the mixture if necessary.
4. Serve immediately.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s Food Fetish column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca.

How to Make Berry Tea Popsicles

How to make Berry Popsicles

Nothing much beats the thirst-quenching bliss that comes from sipping on a cold and sweaty beaded glass of iced tea on a hot summer’s day — except when you turn that same glass of iced tea into a cold berry popsicle.

Stay cool this summer by making these easy and refreshing pops; just add a handful of fresh, plump, in-season strawberries and blueberries to some ready-made, subtlety-sweet raspberry tea for a bright and healthy treat bursting with juicy flavours and an intense pop of colour.

How to make Fresh Berry Tea Popsicles

Berry Tea Popsicles

Makes: 8 Popsicles

Ingredients:
6 to 8 large strawberries
1/2 cup blueberries
1 cup Pure Leaf Raspberry Iced Tea (or you can use unflavoured iced tea)

Directions:
1. Combine all ingredients and pour into popsicle maker and freeze until ready.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo.

8 Healthy Grab-and-Go Snacks Kids Will Love

An action-packed schedule can mean big gaps between meals. Resist the lure of the fast food drive-through and fuel after school practice with these belly-filling, good-for-you snacks that are packed with fresh ingredients and loads of nutrition.

sammies-on-a-stick-recipe

1. Kid-Friendly Sammies on a Stick
Just one of these protein-packed sticks is enough to satiate a hungry belly. Get your kids to help make them ahead of time by letting them pick and choose which ingredients they like from the items of your choosing. Nothing beats a homemade snack that they’ve helped make themselves!

2. Rolled Turkey and Apple Quesadillas
Turkey roll-ups get a bit of crunch when thinly-sliced apples are tossed in the mix. These protein-rich, nutritious snacks will keep energy levels up and little tummies satisfied.

3. Veggies with Creamy Chick Pea Onion Dip
Sliced peppers, carrots and celery get an added dose of nutrition with this creamy chickpea dipper you can pack in a container.

CocoaBanana-Bran-Muffins-recipe

4. Cocoa Banana Bran Muffins
Bake a large batch of these on Sunday and use as breakfast on the move or as a brown-bag snack the whole week. Stuffed with banana, fibre-rich bran and a hint of chocolate, these yummy muffins will be a hit with kids.

5. Grape and Cheese Bites
These fruit and cheese snacks make the perfect on-the-go munchable kids can eat anywhere — whether they’re in the car, at the park or on the bench before practice.

chicken-quesadilla-recipe-kids.jpg

6. Easy Quesadillas

Quesadillas are so easy to whip up and can be ready to eat in under 10 minutes. Try different variations from week to week. Some combos that kids love, include almond butter and bananas, tuna and cheddar cheese, and chicken and salsa.

7. Warm Banana Roll-Ups
For breakfast or dessert, sweet banana rolls have the built-in bonus of keeping little fingers clean during the chaos of the weekday rush. Just spread cream cheese on to a warm tortilla, place a whole banana on top then roll it up and grill until golden brown. The result? Crispy and warm on the outside and gooey and sweet on the inside.

8. Apple, Carrot and Flax Muffins with Streusel Topping
Kick up the nutritional value of carrot muffins by adding apple and a whack of flax seeds for a hearty and portable snack.

Roasted Tomato Tart Two Ways

After what feels like an eternity, suddenly the trees are in bloom, gardens are being planted and now, the season’s first sun-ripened tomatoes are starting to roll in. Just like that, we’re heading into summer. Which begs the question. Can comfort food be fresh? The answer is a resounding heck, yeah.

The balsamic and burrata tart is like a pizza-fide version of my favourite antipasto plate, splashed with a hint of tart balsamic and nestled on a bed of buttery puff pastry. It’s basically akin to having a built-in bread bowl. But it’s the combination of creamy burrata, blistered toma-toes and the pop of fresh herbs that makes this dish something I’m going to dream about for weeks.

That’s not to say I don’t love the simplified tomato tart any less. These intense, blood-red tomatoes set atop a smattering of melted cheese turns into something extraordinary when you add the one-two punch of fresh basil and oregano.

Cook Time: 25 minutes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 4

Burrata Tart with Arugula Salad

Balsamic, Burrata & Roasted Tomato Tarts
Inspired by Donna Hay

Ingredients:
2 sheets butter puff pastry, thawed
1 pint red & yellow tomatoes, left whole
4-6 ounces burrata cheese
1/2 mozzarella, shredded
3-4 slices thinly sliced prosciutto
1 clove garlic, minced or grated
4-6 sprigs of fresh oregano, leaves chopped
4 large fresh basil leaves, torn
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp olive oil
Salt + pepper

Burrata Tomato Tart Bonnie Mo

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Stack two pieces of puff pastry one on top of the other and press gently to adhere. Cut into a large circle.
3. Place on the prepared baking sheet, score the puff pastry along the sides about 1/2 inch, to make a small border. Inside the border, pierce with a fork. Lightly brush with olive oil.
4. In a bowl, whisk together the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic and oregano. Add tomatoes to the balsamic mix and toss.
5. Sprinkle puff pastry with mozzarella and arrange tomatoes. Add any remaining balsamic mix-ture left in the bowl.
6. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and pastry is golden.
7. Let stand for 3-5 minutes and top with torn burrata and prosciutto. Garnish with fresh basil.

Cherry Tomato Tart on Puff Pastry

Cheesy Cherry Tomato Tarts

Ingredients:
1 sheet butter puff pastry
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 Tbsp chopped basil
1/2 Tbsp chopped oregano
1/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup grated Gruyere cheese
Olive oil, salt, pepper

Cherry Tomato Tart with Herbs & Cheese

Directions:
1. Thaw frozen puff pastry according to directions. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
2. Place chopped cherry tomatoes on a paper towel facing down to drain for about 30 minutes (this will keep them from being to wet and making the tart soggy). Toss in a bowl with olive oil, salt, pepper and the chopped herbs.
3. Unroll the thawed pastry and cover with plastic wrap. Roll out the pastry slightly. Transfer to a baking sheet and score the puff pastry along the sides about 1/2 inch, to make a small border. Inside the border, pierce with a fork. Lightly brush with olive oil.
4. Sprinkle puff pastry with cheese and top with the tomato mixture, facing the cut tomatoes up.
5. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and pastry is golden.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo.

Spicy Fried Shrimp: 1 Dish, 2 Ways

Every time I fry up a batch of shrimp, I vow to make it a regular part of my dinner rotation. They need very little embellishment and will bend to just about any culinary whim. That, on top of the fact that they literally take less than 5 minutes to cook, you really have to wonder why you’re not eating more shrimp.

Like the name implies, I dialed up the heat with these spicy shrimp with a whack of fresh Thai chilis. This is where the dish can really become your own. If you only want a breath of spice, ease into it with one or two chilis and leave out the seeds. On the other hand, if you like to sweat a little while you’re chowing down your food, leave the seeds in and ramp up the chili count to as high as you dare.

For a more subtle version, the Sriracha butter sauce has a mellower heat, as the fat content in the butter transforms the Sriracha into a buffalo wing-like flavor — I particularly like a generous squeeze of fresh lime juice to help brighten it up. Feel free to toss your cooked shrimp right in the bowl, or keep it on the side for dipping.

Both of these spicy shrimp dishes can be eaten with rice, over noodles, in a salad or on their own as an appetizer with a cold drink. Napkins not included.

Cook Time: 5 minutes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 2

Spicy Fried Chili Shrimp

Spicy Fried Shrimp with Thai Chilis

Ingredients:
16-20 medium to large shrimp, shell on
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp fresh ginger, think sliced
3 green onions, chopped
3-4 Thai chilis (more or less, depending on how spicy you like it)

Directions:
1. Rinse and pat shrimp dry. In a large saucepan or wok, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add ginger and garlic and stir constantly, being extra careful not to burn the garlic, about 1 mi-nute.
2. Add shrimp and chilis and stir fry until almost cooked, about 4 minutes.
3. Add green onions and cook for another 30 seconds.

Sriracha_Shrimp

Spicy Shrimp with Sriracha Butter

Ingredients:
16-20 medium to large shrimp, shell on
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup butter
1 cup Sriracha
Juice of 1 lime
1 tsp salt
½ tsp sugar

Directions:
1. Rinse and pat shrimp dry. In a large saucepan or wok, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add ginger and garlic and stir constantly, being extra careful not to burn the garlic, about 1 mi-nute.
2. Add shrimp and stir fry until almost cooked, about 4-5 minutes.
3. Meanwhile in a small saucepan, melt butter over low heat.
4. Combine Sriracha, lime juice, salt and sugar in a blender and whiz for about 30 seconds, slowly adding the melted butter.
5. Toss in a large bowl with cooked shrimp or keep on the side as a spicy dipping sauce.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo.

Salad Niçoise with Dijon Lemon Dressing: 1 Dish, 2 Ways

Briny and bright, this take on a classic French bistro salad is a cornucopia of flavours and colours that doesn’t require extra primping to make a big statement at the table. Here, I’ve made it the traditional way with olives, capers and good quality, oil-packed jarred tuna, and again with a filet of smoked trout, which gives it an extra layer of richness and smokiness.

It looks great neatly organized in rows, breaking up the colours by ingredient with the fish taking centre stage. No matter how you present it, it’s going to be good, so just go for it.

From the delicate and crunchy French green beans and tender potatoes, to the ping of the garlicky Dijon lemon dressing, this is one beefy (but beef-less) salad you’ve got to make.

Prep Time: 40 minutes
Assembly Time: 2 minutes
Serves: 4

888_Salad-Nicoise-Tuna

Salad Niçoise with Tuna

Ingredients:
1 jar oil-packed tuna, drained
1 lb. small potatoes, cooked until tender
2 cups French green beans, trimmed and blanched
4 hard-boiled eggs, quartered
1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
½ cup Niçoise olives
3 Tbsp capers
4-5 radishes, thinly sliced
Boston lettuce leaves, rinsed and dried
Fresh dill, to taste
3-4 salt-packed anchovies (optional)

888_Salad-Nicoise_trout

Salad Niçoise with Smoked Trout

Ingredients:
1 medium filet smoked trout, chopped
1 lb. small potatoes, cooked until tender
2 cups French green beans, trimmed and blanched
4 hard-boiled eggs, halved
1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
½ cup Niçoise olives
3 Tbsp capers
4-5 radishes, thinly sliced
Boston lettuce leaves, rinsed and dried
Fresh dill, to taste
3-4 salt-packed anchovies (optional)

Dijon lemon dressing (adapted from Saveur):
1 clove garlic
? cup olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 shallot, minced
Kosher salt & fresh cracked black pepper, to taste

888_Salad-Nicoise-with-Tuna-Olives

Directions:
1. On a cutting board, mince garlic and sprinkle with coarse salt. Using the flat side of the knife, press the garlic and salt together to form a smooth paste. Transfer to a bowl and whisk in oil, lemon juice, mustard, shallots, and salt and pepper. Set aside.
2. On a serving platter or in a large bowl, arrange the butter lettuce on the bottom and then line up ingredients neatly in rows. Drizzle with Dijon lemon dressing and more salt and pepper just before serving.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo.

Gnocchi with Brown Butter Sauce: 1 Dish, 2 Ways

There’s nothing quite like slow-melted butter turned slightly brown and nutty, wafting throughout the house to whet the palate and get you excited about dinner. But when you toss a few fresh sage leaves into the mix, you’ve got an incredibly easy and delicious sauce that’s ready in less than 10 minutes.

This super-fast meal is both elegant and simple to throw together and thanks to a few last-minute flourishes — like a generous dusting of your best-quality parmesan and toasted pine nuts — this minimal-ingredient dish suddenly becomes restaurant worthy.

Tip: While you can certainly make your own gnocchi, this sauce works well on the packaged version.

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4

panroasredgnocchi

Fried Gnocchi with Brown Butter Sage Sauce

Ingredients:
1 package potato gnocchi
2 Tbsp butter
1/2 tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted

Brown Butter Sage Sauce:
1/4 cup unsalted butter, cold
15-20 fresh sage leaves
1/2 lemon, zest finely grated
Kosher salt & cracked black pepper
1/2 cup parmesan, coarsely grated

Directions:
1. In a small saucepan, toast pine nuts over low heat until golden, being careful not to burn, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
2. In a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat, melt butter, swirling occasionally. When the butter has almost completely melted, stir in the sage leaves. Cook until butter turns slightly brown and nutty and the sage leaves are slightly crisp, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.
3. In another skillet, heat butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add gnocchi in a single layer and fry on one side until crisp, about 1-2 minutes. Gently flip and fry one the other side for another 1-2 minutes.
4. Add fried gnocchi and lemon zest to the pan with the brown butter sage sauce and stir until coated. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with grated parmesan and toasted pine nuts and serve immediately.

gnocchibrownbutter

Gnocchi with Chili Brown Butter Sauce & Crispy Sage

Ingredients:
1 package potato gnocchi

Brown Butter Sage Sauce:
1/4 cups unsalted butter, cold
15-20 fresh sage leaves
1 Tbsp red pepper flakes
Kosher salt & cracked black pepper
1/2 cup parmesan, coarsely grated

Directions:
1. In a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat, melt butter, swirling occasionally. When the butter has almost completely melted, stir in the sage leaves. Cook until butter turns slightly brown and nutty and the sage leaves are slightly crisp, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat.
2. Add gnocchi and chili flakes to the pan and stir until coated. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with grated parmesan and serve immediately.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo.

Thai Lettuce Cups: 1 Dish, 2 Ways

These Thai-inspired wraps brimming with fresh vegetables and herbs are the perfect way to welcome spring. You can choose to add chicken or go vegetarian and opt for the quinoa option, but both make for a quick and healthy weeknight dinner and lunch leftovers.

For the vegetarian version, I used cabbage leaves instead of traditional lettuce — a decision that turned out to be pure genius. Not only was I able to double-stuff them, but they were less fragile than their butter or iceberg counterparts and less likely to have their contents spill out on to the plate. Just be sure to use the inner, most tender parts of the cabbage.

These wraps are completely customizable, so feel free to toss in those bits of almost-forgotten vegetables you’ve got floating around — cucumber, peppers, bean sprouts or mushrooms come to mind — to pump up the nutritional value even more.

888_Thai-Lettuce-Cups-Chicken

Prep Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Serves: 6

Ingredients:

For the Chicken:
1 pound ground chicken
2 small cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons ginger, minced
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
1 green onion, chopped
2 tablespoons lemongrass, minced
1/4 large red pepper, finely chopped
1 tablespoons fish sauce
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons oil

10 large lettuce leaves

For the Thai Dipping Sauce:
1/2 cup fish sauce
1/2 cup water, boiling hot
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-2 red Thai chilies, stems removed and minced

Thai Chicken Lettuce Cups

Directions:

1. In a large skillet on medium-high heat, fry ginger and garlic in oil for about 1 minute.
2. Add ground chicken, breaking up with the back of a wooden spoon and stir-fry for 6 minutes.
3. Add cilantro, green onion, lemongrass, fish sauce, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper, and re-move from heat. Set aside.
4. Meanwhile in a medium bowl, whisk together fish sauce, water, sugar, and vinegar until sugar dissolves. Whisk in garlic and chilies. Set aside to cool.

888_Thai-Vegetable-Lettuce-Cups

Ingredients:

For the Quinoa Thai Cups:
1 cup quinoa, cooked
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon lemongrass
1 large carrot, grated
1/2 red pepper, finely chopped
1tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped
1 green onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste
1 lime, squeezed
2 tablespoons oil

12-15 cabbage leaves

Thai Peanut Sauce:
1 cup peanuts
3 small cloves garlic, minced
2 limes, juiced
1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons water
2 tablespoons lemongrass, minced
4 teaspoons vegetable oil

888_Thai-Lettuce-Cups-Peanut-Sauce

Directions:

1. In a large skillet on medium-high heat, fry ginger and garlic in oil for about 1 minute.
2. Add cooked quinoa, stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add water chestnuts, stir-fry for 2 minutes. Stir in cilantro, green onion, lemongrass, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper, and remove from heat. Set aside.
3. Meanwhile for the Thai Peanut Sauce, combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor, and puree until the mixture resembles chunky peanut butter.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo.

Jarlsberg Cheese Biscuits with Creamy Garlic and Herb Butter

Jarlsberg-Cheese-Biscuits-with-Creamy-Garlic-and-Herb-Butter

Soft and pillowy on the inside with a light, cheese-topped outer crust, these homemade biscuits make even the speediest meals feel special and are bound to become a family favourite. Whether you to eat them fresh out of the oven, smothered in garlic-herb butter, as a vehicle to mop up chili, or as a base for eggs Benedict, the subtle sweet and nutty taste of Jarlsberg cheese give these warm biscuits an added layer of flavour you’ll love.

The best part about this recipe is that they freeze well, so you can double the recipe and stash away the extras for an easy weeknight treat.

Do you have a winning Jarlsberg recipe? Share it now for a chance to win a set of Le Creuset cookware worth $1500 and a 10 kg wheel of Jarlsberg cheese. Details here.

Cheese-and-garlic-biscuit-recipe

Jarlsberg Cheese Biscuits with Creamy Garlic and Herb Butter

Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Serves: Makes about 12 biscuits

Ingredients:

2 cups all purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons shortening
1 cup shredded Jarlsberg cheese
1 cup buttermilk
extra shredded Jarlsberg cheese for topping

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
3. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, mix cold shortening into flour mixture until combined.
4. Quickly blend cold butter into the flour mixture until butter is roughly the size of peas. Add the shredded Jarlsberg cheese and mix until blended.
5. Make a well in the centre of the flour and pour in the buttermilk. Working from the outside in, bring the flour into the centre with a large spoon, scooping and turning the bowl until the buttermilk is incorporated into the flour. Do not over mix.
6. For rustic-style biscuits, drop large tablespoon-sized pieces of dough onto an ungreased baking sheet. Brush the tops with the garlic-herb butter and add some shredded Jarlsberg cheese.
7. Bake for about 12 to 15 minutes. Serve warm with more garlic-herb butter.

Jarlsberg Cheese Biscuits with Creamy Garlic and Herb Butter Recipe
Creamy Homemade Garlic and Herb Butter

Ingredients:

1/2 lb unsalted butter
2 tablespoons of rosemary, minced
2 tablespoons of parsley, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions:

1. Add minced herbs, garlic and butter to a food processor and blend until well combined and creamy.
2. Spoon mixture on to a waxed paper and roll, twisting the ends to secure. Put in fridge until ready to use or store in the freezer.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo

1 Dish, 2 Ways: Easy No-Bake Weeknight Lasagna

In these final halcyon days of winter, I’ve mentally set fire to my coat and am two seconds away from dragging the BBQ out of the garage and starting an herb garden. And while these extended sunny evenings don’t exactly put me in the mood for cranking up the oven, I’m not quite ready to give up comfort food just yet.

Enter the no-bake lasagna. This dish boasts all the flavours of this heartwarming dish —homemade tomato sauce, melty cheese and succulent ground beef — in a fraction of the time.

While there’s no shame in simply breaking up plain old lasagna noodles for this recipe, I opted for prettily-shaped fiorelli pasta, which has lovely petal-like edges that not only reminded me of lasagne noodles, but expertly capture the sauce.

The best part of this dish is that you can stretch your leftovers to make a killer soup. A spoonful of ricotta on top is an unexpected topping that mimics the richness of your typical baked variety and the beefy tomato broth helps satisfy your inner cold-weather soup addict.

So go ahead and embrace winter just a little longer.

Easy-no-bake-lasagna-recipe-weeknight

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Serving Size: 6

Ingredients

For the sauce:
1 can, San Marzano tomatoes
1 Spanish onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
4 large fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

For the lasagne:
3/4 package fiorelli pasta
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 yellow onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons, olive oil
kosher salt, to taste
fresh ground pepper, to taste

1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup spinach, chopped
1/2 cup ricotta

For the soup:
All of the above ingredients, plus…
6 cups beef broth
1 cup homemade tomato sauce (see above)
Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste

Directions for No-Bake Lasagna:

1. In a large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Sweat onions and garlic until onions are translucent, about five minutes.
2. Add canned tomatoes and gently stir, being careful not to break the tomatoes (it can make them bitter). Stir occasionally. Let simmer for at least 30 minutes. Add basil and puree with immersion blender. Set aside.
3. In a large skillet, add olive oil, onions and garlic and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, letting the oil get infused with the flavours. Add ground beef and break up with a wooden spoon. Cook until there is no more red in the ground beef, about 12 minutes. Drain fat from beef.
4. Ladle prepared tomato sauce into skillet with the beef and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Add cooked noodles directly to skillet and stir to combine. Stir in tomatoes, spinach and gently stir.
5. Serve in individual bowls and garnish with a spoonful of ricotta, grated mozzarella and basil.

Easy-no-bake-Lasagna-soup-recipe

Directions for Lasagna Soup:

1. Cook pasta to al dente according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
2. In a large saucepan, bring broth and tomato-ground beef sauce to a boil.
3. Add cooked noodles and stir. Ladle into bowls and garnish with a spoonful of ricotta, grated mozzarella and basil.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo

1 Dish, 2 Ways: Pork & Shrimp Wontons

Whether you like your wontons slurped or crunched, one thing’s for certain; little pouches of savoury pork dumplings are always a deeply satisfying meal, no matter what time of year.

If you need a little push, make the Lunar New Year a culinary excuse for finally trying your hand at making homemade wontons. Thanks to handy store-bought wrappers, it’s easier than you think.

The trick is learning how to properly fold the wontons so that the filling doesn’t ooze out during the boiling or frying process. But truth be told, even if they don’t look like they’ve been assembled by a dumpling master, as long as they hold together, they’re going to taste absolutely delicious.

friedwontons

Serving Size: approximately 60 wontons
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 10 minutes

Crispy Pork Wontons with Chili Oil Sauce

Ingredients:
12 store-bought wonton wrappers

For the Filling:
8 ounces ground pork
4 ounces raw shrimp, minced
3 Tablespoons chives, finely chopped
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon fish sauce
½ teaspoon sesame oil
½ teaspoon Chinese rice wine or sherry
¼ teaspoon sugar
3 dashes white pepper

For Frying:
1 cup canola oil

For the Chili Oil Sauce:
½ Tablespoon Chinese black vinegar
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
½ Tablespoon dried chili flakes
1 Tablespoon oil

friedwontons2

Directions:

  1. Combine the pork with the rest of the ingredients for the filling in a medium bowl. *Assemble the dumplings.
  2. Heat 2 to 3 inches of oil in a wok or stock pot to 350°F for deep-frying. Gently drop the pork dumplings into the oil and deep fry in batches.
  3. Deep-fry until they turn golden brown. Dish out with a slotted spoon, draining the excess oil by placing hot dumplings on a wire rack or dish lined with paper towels.

*How to wrap the dumplings:

  1. Place a piece of wonton on a flat surface about 1 Tablespoon of filling onto the wrapper, being careful not to overfill.
  2. Dip your finger in a bowl of warm water and circle around the filling, and fold over to form a triangle shape.
  3. Using both thumbs and index fingers, press and squeeze both sides of the dumplings towards the centre to form the folds. Seal the dumpling by dipping your index finger into a small bowl of water and circle around the outer edges of the wonton wrapper.
  4. Place them on a floured surface or baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap or a damp cloth to prevent drying.

Pork Wonton Soup

Ingredients:
12 store-bought wonton wrappers

For the Filling:
8 ounces ground pork
4 ounces raw shrimp, minced
3 Tablespoons chives, finely chopped
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon fish sauce
½ teaspoon sesame oil
½ teaspoon Chinese rice wine or sherry
¼ teaspoon sugar
3 dashes white pepper
2 cups, water (for boiling wontons)

soup1JPG

For the Soup:
6 cups homemade chicken stock or store-bought chicken broth
Green onions, to taste
Salt and white pepper, to taste
Wontons, soba noodles or noodles of choice

Howto_4

Directions:

  1. Cook noodles, drain under cold water to stop cooking and set aside.
  2. In a medium pot, bring water to boil. Working in batches, gently lower dumplings into the water and let boil for 2-3 minutes. Remove from water and cover to prevent drying.
  3. Bring chicken broth to a boil and season with white pepper and salt to taste.
  4. Place dumplings in soup bowls, add hot broth and garnish with chopped green onion.

Howto_3

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s 1 Dish, 2 Ways column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca. For more recipe ideas, visit bonniemo.ca, or catch her on Instagram @bonniemo

1 Dish, 2 Meals: Smoky Stewed Chickpeas with Sautéed Vegetables

It’s true; I’ve fallen hard for this fancy reinterpretation of your standard beans-on-toast and I’m willing to bet even the biggest skeptic of this humble dish is going to want to tuck into its warmth and smokiness with wild abandon.

Inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi’s recipe in Plenty More, my cheat version of his amazing five-hour, slow-cooked dish (which you should really give a try when you have time) doesn’t miss a flavour beat, despite being speedy.

Instead of using dried chickpeas and slow cooking them in an onion and pepper mixture over a simmering flame until they turn unbelievably soft, I sautéed the vegetables to caramelize them a bit before pureeing the sauce to help mellow out the flavours. That paired with every weeknight chef’s secret weapon, the canned chickpea, makes this one comfort food dish that will make you happy it’s February in Canada.

Here I’ve made it two ways: on toast with a poached egg (because juicy, runny eggs just make everything better), and a crispy pita pizza with a few scoops of creamy labneh (Lebanese cream cheese).

chickpeatoast2

Ingredients:

1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, coarsely chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 red bell peppers cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 large tomato, peeled and coarsely chopped
1/2 teaspoon sugar

Directions:

  1. In a large saucepan, heat oil, and add onion and red peppers and cook until soft, about 8 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add tomato paste, cayenne, paprika, salt and black pepper to taste and stir to combine. Add mixture to a food processor and mix to make a paste.
  2. Over medium heat, return paste to the saucepan and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, before adding the tomato, sugar, chickpeas and (a scant) 1 cup water.
  3. Bring to a low simmer, cover the pan and cook over low heat for 20-25 minutes, stirring occa-sionally and adding more water when needed to maintain a sauce-like consistency. Remove the lid and cook for 15 more minutes.

chickpeapizza-4

Smoky Chickpea Pizza with Labneh

Ingredients:

3 Pitas
1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
4 Tablespoon labneh
Fresh parsley
3 eggs
2 cups stewed chickpeas

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Brush pitas with olive oil, spread a thin layer of chickpea mixture over and make a small well in the centre.
  2. Crack an egg in the middle of each pita and bake for 8-12 minutes until it’s cooked to desired doneness.
  3. Finish with fresh parsley and a few scoops of labneh. Serve immediately.

chickpeatoast3

Smoky Chickpeas on Grilled Toast with Poached Eggs & Zahtar

Ingredients:

4 slices bread, brushed with olive oil and toasted on both sides
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 poached eggs
2 teaspoons zahtar

Directions:

  1. Place a piece of warm toast on each plate and spoon the chickpeas on top.
  2. Arrange a poached egg on top, followed by a sprinkle of zahtar and a drizzle of olive oil.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s Food Fetish column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca.

1 Dish, 2 Meals: Mixed Mushrooms with Caramelized Shallots and Spinach

If the thought of king oyster mushrooms, shallots and spinach sizzling in butter whets your palate, then follow me to your future dinner options, involving quick, meatless weeknight meals.

Thanks to a few store-bought helpers and a bright, no-fuss side of lemony greens, these quick-cooking vegetables make a gorgeous meal that tastes just as good the next day.

Butter Sautéed Oyster and Cremini Mushrooms with Caramelized Shallots and Spinach

Sauteed-mushrooms-with-shallots-and-spinach.jpg

Ingredients:

3 large shallots, halved and thinly sliced
3 king oyster mushrooms, halved and thinly sliced
6 to 8 large cremini mushrooms
2 cups fresh baby spinach
2 tablespoons, olive oil
1 tablespoon, butter
Coarse salt and cracked black pepper

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, heat butter and olive oil over medium-low heat. Add shallots and cook until caramelized and soft, about 10 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue to cook for another 10 minutes. Fold in baby spinach, add salt and pepper.

Mixed Mushroom Tart with Caramelized Shallots and Goat Cheese

mushroom-tart-with-spinach-shallots-goat-cheese

Ingredients:

1 sheet, frozen butter puff pastry
3 large shallots, halved and thinly sliced
3 king oyster mushrooms, halved and thinly sliced
6 to 8 large cremini mushrooms
2 cups fresh baby spinach
2 tablespoons soft goat cheese, crumbled
2 tablespoons, olive oil
1 tablespoon, butter
Coarse salt and cracked black pepper

For the egg wash:
1 egg, whisked
1/2 tablespoon milk

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Roll out thawed puff pastry and place on a baking sheet. Fold over about 1/4-inch to form a border and brush the edges with the egg mixture. Bake until golden, about 12 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, heat butter and olive oil over medium-low heat. Add shallots and cook until caramelized and soft, about 10 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue to cook for another 10 minutes. Fold in baby spinach, add salt and pepper. Set aside.
  3. Top the pastry with the shallot/mushroom mixture and drop the goat cheese on top. Bake for another 10 minutes.

For the Salad:

Baby salad greens
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Place the salad greens in a large bowl.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Pour enough dressing on the salad to moisten. Toss and serve.

Mixed Mushroom Quiche with Caramelized Shallots and Goat Cheese

Mushroom-spinach-shallots-quiche-recipe

Ingredients:

1 pre-made pie crust
3 large shallots, halved and thinly sliced
3 king oyster mushrooms, halved and thinly sliced
6 to 8 large cremini mushrooms
2 cups fresh baby spinach
2 tablespoons soft goat cheese, crumbled
2 tablespoons, olive oil
1 tablespoon, butter
Coarse salt and cracked black pepper

4 large eggs
2/3 cup half and half
1/3 cup whole milk
Coarse salt and cracked black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the egg wash:
1 egg, whisked
1/2 tbsp milk

Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Brush pie crust with egg mixture and bake until light golden brown, about 13 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.
    2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, heat butter and olive oil over medium-low heat. Add shallots and cook until caramelized and soft, about 10 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue to cook for another 10 minutes. Fold in baby spinach, add salt and pepper. Set aside.
    3. Whisk eggs, half and half, salt, pepper and nutmeg in large bowl to whisk. Stir sautéed mushroom/shallot mixture and goat cheese and pour the filling into the crust.
    4. Bake quiche until puffed, golden brown, and just set in the centre, about 40 minutes. Cool and cut into wedges.

For the Salad:

Baby salad greens
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Place the salad greens in a large bowl.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Pour enough dressing on the salad to moisten. Toss and serve.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s Food Fetish column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca.

1 Dish, 2 Meals: Pan Roasted White Miso-Glazed Cod

Resist the lure of takeout with a homemade version of your favourite sushi joint entrée. The rich *marinade of white miso, sugar, soy and sesame oil, soak deep into the flesh of this light and flaky fish, transforming an economical, easy-to-find ingredient into a surprisingly simple weeknight treat.

Here, I made two completely different meals using many of the same ingredients. One; a hearty and elegant offering of nutty purple Thai rice paired with tender, quick-braised baby bok choy and the other; an even lighter meal of mellow white miso soup that cooks up in a snap. The addition of fresh herbs, a squeeze of citrus and hot pepper—and of course, the silky miso cod—elevates this quick, humble soup to superstar levels.

Cod_2

Pan Roasted White Miso-Glazed Cod
*Marinate the fish the night before or if you’re pressed for time, at least 30 minutes before.

Ingredients:

3 Tablespoons mirin
3 Tablespoons sake
1/2 cup white miso paste
1/3 cup sugar
Six 6- to 7-ounce skinless cod fillets, about 1 1/2 inches thick
Vegetable oil

Directions:

  1. In a small saucepan, bring the mirin and sake to a boil. Whisk in the miso until dissolved, add the sugar and cook over moderate heat, whisking, just until dissolved. Add toasted sesame oil.
  2. Transfer the marinade to a large baking dish and let cool. Add the fish and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight, if you have time.
  3. In a medium non-stick pan, heat vegetable oil. Scrape off majority of marinade from the fish, but don’t rinse. Cook, without disturbing for about 3-4 minutes. Gently flip and cook other side for another 3-4 minutes.

Miso_cod_soup1

Mellow White Miso Soup with Cod, Baby Bok Choy, Sriracha and Lime

Ingredients:

4 Tablespoons miso paste (to taste)
4 ounces of somen noodles
2 green onions, tops removed thinly sliced
Small handful of cilantro
Baby bok choy, trimmed and halved
Fresh squeezed lime juice, to taste
Sliced Thai chilies (to taste)
Sriracha, to taste

Directions:

  1. Cook the somen noodles in salted water and drain. Run cold water over the noodles to stop them from cooking, shake off any excess water and set aside.
  2. In a medium sauce pan bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and remove from heat. Pour some of the hot water into a small bowl and whisk in the miso paste to avoid clumping. Stir this back into the pot. Adjust amount of miso to your own liking.
  3. Add bok choy and simmer until tender.
  4. Divide noodles between 3 or 4 bowls, and pour the miso broth and bok choy over them. Add cooked miso cod, green onions, cilantro, Sriracha, lime and chilies to taste.

White Miso-Glazed Cod with Purple Rice and Braised Baby Bok Choy

Cod_rice1

Braised Baby Bok Choy

Ingredients:
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
6 pieces of baby bok choy, trimmed, and halved lengthwise
1/4 cup homemade or low-sodium chicken stock
3 Tablespoons soy sauce

For Purple Rice
*Cook rice according to package directions. Feel free to substitute chicken or vegetable broth instead of water and add a knob of ginger to add more flavour.

Directions:

  1. Cook dice according to package directions.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot, but not smoking. Add bok choy and cook, turning once, until just beginning to turn golden, about 2 minutes. Add stock and soy sauce. Cover, reduce heat to medium and simmer until bok choy is tender, about 5 minutes. Transfer bok choy to a serving platter, reserving cooking liquid in skillet.
  3. Cook liquid over medium-high heat until it is reduced by half, 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Arrange rice, miso cod and braised bok choy on a plate, and drizzle leftover braising liquid over rice, if desired.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s Food Fetish column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca.

1 Dish, 2 Meals: Skillet Turkey Sausage with Rainbow Kale

Turkey and Kale skillet recipe

A steaming bowl of pasta need not be heavy or labour-intensive. This light, turkey sausage and rainbow kale dish hits all the right flavour notes and is done almost as fast as it takes for the pasta to cook.

My advice is to take the extra few minutes to brown some bread crumbs. While not essential to the flavour, this step lends the dish a wickedly awesome crunchy texture that resembles the best bits of a baked pasta, without even turning on your oven.

Meal 1: Turkey Sausage and Kale Orecchiette with Toasted Panko and Parmesan

Turkey and Kale Orecchiette pasta

Ingredients:

2 cups rainbow kale. chopped
1 lb. dried orecchiette
1/2 lb. turkey sausage, casings discarded and meat chopped
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
2 tablespoons sea salt, plus more, to taste
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
* Add a pinch of red pepper flakes for a bit of bite

Directions:

1. In a pan over medium-low heat, warm 1 tablespoon olive oil, add the bread crumbs and stir to coat. Season lightly with salt and cook, stirring often, until the crumbs are an even, deep golden brown, about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.

2. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil, add 2 tablespoon salt and the kale and cook until tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Cool under cold running water, drain and squeeze gently to remove excess moisture. Chop coarsely and set aside.

3. Cook pasta until al dente according to the package directions.

4. Meanwhile, warm the 1/3 cup olive oil over medium-low heat. Add sausage and garlic and cook, stirring and breaking up meat with the back of a wooden spoon until browned, about 7 minutes. Add the kale and stir to combine for about 2 minutes. Season with salt.

5. When the pasta is ready, scoop out and reserve about 2 ladlefuls of the cooking water, drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Add the sausage mixture and cheese and toss well over low heat to combine, adding some of the cooking water, if needed.

6. Top each portion with a sprinkle of the toasted bread crumbs and more cheese.

 

Meal 2: Garlicky Turkey Kale Soup with Pasta, White Beans and Tomatoes

Stretch your kale and turkey sausage mixture by turning it into a soup. This bright and healthy meal is surprisingly filling and thanks to the addition of white beans and tomatoes, there’s even more deliciousness in every bite.

Use homemade broth if you have it, otherwise, a low sodium boxed version is just as delicious.

turkey kale white bean soup

Ingredients:

6 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup white beans
1 pint of grape tomatoes, quartered
Cooked turkey and kale mixture
Cooked orecchiette
Salt & pepper to taste
grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese to taste

Directions:

1. In a medium pot, heat 6 cups of chicken broth to a low simmer. Add 1/2 cup white beans and heat through, about 2 minutes.

2. Add cooked sausage and kale and cooked orecchiette and heat until ingredients are hot.

Serve immediately.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s Food Fetish column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca.

5 Ways To Master Phyllo Pastry

Transforming this wispy-thin pastry into a myriad of festive options is easier than you think. From a delightful cherry almond strudel to brunch-friendly smoked ham and egg cups, here are five reasons to get your phyllo on right now.

1. Phyllo Egg Cups with Ham and Cheese

Churning out brunch for a crowd with the ease of a seasoned line cook is a breeze with these delightfully light phyllo pastry cups, filled with smoked ham, shredded cheese and eggs, all baked to a golden brown perfection.

Phyllo-Egg-Cups

2. Cherry Almond Strudel

Brimming with ripe, juicy cherries encased in crisp, flaky layers of phyllo pastry and topped with a dusting of cinnamon, brown sugar and almonds, this delicate and sophisticated treat is a cinch to pull off thanks to the PC® Black Label Sour Cherry Fruit Spread.

Black-label_CherryStrudel

3. Classic Greek Baklava

Dripping with honey and crunchy bits of walnut, this showstopper dish is where phyllo pastry really shines. Serve alongside grapes and a dollop of Greek yogurt to balance out the sweetness of this classic Greek dessert.

ChucksDayOff_ClassicGreekBaklava

4. Tomato Cheese Tart

This knock-out recipe for savoury tomatoes on a crisp, buttery tart can be thrown together in a snap, making it the perfect recipe to have on hand during the holiday season.

chucksdayoff_tomato-cheese-tart

5. Camembert Feuilletee with Apricot Syrup and Pistachios

Sweet apricot, creamy Camembert and pistachio, all wrapped up in a buttery phyllo purse is bound to become a dinner party staple. Because who doesn’t love melted cheese paired with fruit and nuts?

Food Fetish: Harissa-Roasted Winter Squash

If you’ve never tried Harissa, my advice is to run—don’t walk—to your nearest grocery store or spice bar and grab yourself a stash. Because once you get a taste of this fiery Moroccan mixture of crushed hot red chilies, caraway, cumin, coriander, garlic, salt and spearmint leaves, you’ll want to throw this flavour bomb on just about everything.

From a rub on grilled meat, to a spicy addition to your best pasta sauce, Shakshuka, or the way I used it here on roasted vegetables, this bold spice mixture is an addictive way to lend depth to your favourite savoury dishes, and is just the sort of pantry addition itching to be experimented with.

roasted_harissa_squash

Since I find that roasted squash can easily veer toward being too-sweet, a healthy whack of Harissa is a real game changer. Once I factored in the bit of crunchy coating is gives the vegetables, this spicy side landed a reoccurring role on my fall cooking repertoire.

Since I was feeling a little festive, I crumbled some goat cheese on top, along with a few bright orbs of pomegranate for some extra pizzazz.

winter_squash_pom

Ingredients:

1 acorn squash, cut in to wedges
3 Tablespoons Harissa spice blend
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons crumbled goat cheese*
Pomegranate seeds*
*Optional

winter_squash_large

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Whisk Harissa spice blend, oil and maple syrup in a small bowl.
  2. Cut the squash in half from top to bottom and scrape out the seeds with a spoon. Cut each half into 4 equal wedges.
  3. In a large bowl, toss squash wedges with Harissa mixture to coat. Roast for 10 minutes, toss once and continue to roast until squash is tender, 20-25 minutes.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s Food Fetish column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca.