Category Archives: In Season

two bowls of fruit salad with rose custard on a white countertop

This Autumn Fruit Salad with Rose Custard is the Seasonal Dessert You Must Try

This fruit salad is a show-stopping finale to any festive autumn feast. With a juicy base of in-season fall fruits, a lovely rose aroma and subtle notes of cardamom and cinnamon, it’s the perfect dessert to celebrate the arrival of cooler temperatures. Not to mention, the smooth velvety custard and crunchiness of the fruits are a brilliant marriage of textures.

two bowls of fruit salad with rose custard on a white countertop

Autumn Fruit Salad with Rose Custard

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Rest Time: 2 hours and 5 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours and 35 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients:
For the rose custard
1 cup whole milk
¼ cup heavy cream
1 tsp rose water
2 large egg yolks
¼ cup sugar
1½ Tbsp corn starch

For the fruit salad
½ cup water
2 Tbsp honey
1 cinnamon stick
2 pods cardamom
1 apple, diced
2 plums, diced
2 peaches, diced
1/2 cup blackberries

To serve
Dried rose petals, for garnish (optional)

ingredients for rose custard and fruit salad on a white countertop

Directions:
For the rose custard:
1. Bring milk, cream, and rose water to boil over medium heat in a saucepan. Remove from heat and set the mixture aside.

2. In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and corn starch until pale, thick, and creamy.

egg yolks, sugar and corn starch being whisked together for rose custard

3. Pour a little of the creamy rose water mixture into the egg mixture (this prevents the eggs from cooking). Then, add the rest of the creamy rose water mixture, whisk, and transfer back to the saucepan.

warm milk being added to the ingredients for rose custard in a white bowl

4. Cook over medium heat, whisking continuously until it thickens slightly.

Related: These Pumpkin Pie Squares With Candied Pecans is the Fall Dessert You’ve Been Craving

A thick and creamy bowl of rose custard

5. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and cover the surface of the custard with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Related: Nothing Says Fall More Than This Sumac-Spiced Roasted Delicata With Tahini Lemon Drizzle

a bowl of rose custard covered with plastic wrap

 


For the fruit salad:

1.  Add water, honey, and spices to a small pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Then carefully stir in all of the fruits except for blackberries and simmer for 5 more minutes.fruit salad ingredients chopped on a round wooden cutting board

2. Remove the pan from the heat, add in the blackberries and mix thoroughly.

Related: These Ginger Molasses Cookies Will Warm You up on a Chilly Fall Day

a bowl of fruit salad being tossed together

3. Let fruit cool for 5 minutes, then divide into four bowls. Top with a generous dollop of rose custard, a sprinkle of dried rose petals (optional) and serve.

2 bowls of fruit salad with rose custard on a white countertop

Like Yakuta’s fruit salad and rose custard? Try her no-bake saffron yogurt tarts next!

apple fennel stir fry on a white plate with two forks

Apple Fennel Stir Fry is a Sophisticated Way to Eat Your Fruits and Veggies

My sister, Lynn, came up with this elegant side dish. It has become a family favourite, as it tastes fancy yet is so easy to make. It’s easy to fall in love with fennel; its crisp, crunchy texture and aromatic taste have endeared it to many culinary cultures. Fennel has the distinct ability to leave your mouth feeling fresh and has even been used for centuries as a digestive remedy. Many folks will say that it tastes like licorice crossed with celery. The slight licorice taste mellows completely when cooked. At only twenty- eight calories a cup and with good amounts of vitamins A, B and C, fennel may become your new best vegetable friend.

apple fennel stir fry on a white plate with two forks

Fennel Apple Stir Fry

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons avocado oil
4 cups sliced red or yellow onions
4 cups sliced fennel bulb (see note)
4 cups apples, sliced (about 2 large apples)
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
¼ to ½ teaspoon unrefined pink salt
2 cups fresh sprouts such as broccoli, sunflower, or alfalfa (optional)

Note: Reserve the fennel fronds and use them when making homemade broth or as a salad topper (finely chopped).

Directions:

1. In a large pot, heat the avocado oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.

2. Add the fennel, apple, Italian seasoning and salt and stir-fry until softened but still retaining a firm texture, about 10 minutes.

3. Top with sprouts (if using) and serve.

Excerpted from Becoming Sugar-Free: How to Break Up with Inflammatory Sugars and Embrace a Naturally Sweet Life by Julie Daniluk. Copyright © 2021 by Julie Daniluk. Published by Penguin Canada, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

Becoming Sugar-Free: How to Break Up with Inflammatory Sugars and Embrace a Naturally Sweet Life, Amazon, $35.

All products featured on Food Network Canada are independently selected by our editors. For more products handpicked by our editorial team, visit Food Network Canada’s Amazon storefront. However, when you buy through links in this article or on our storefront, we earn an affiliate commission.

slices of sweet corn mochi cake on a blue plate

This Delightfully Chewy Mochi Cake is Made with Fresh Corn

It is prudent to preface this recipe with a warning: May lead to repeated urges to go back for more! This is my seasonal spin on the iconic Hawaiian butter mochi, a treat made primarily with glutinous rice flour and coconut milk which yields an addictively gooey yet chewy texture with crisp edges. This idea came to me in early summer when the arrival of fresh, local corn was still a (highly-anticipated) few weeks away. Now in peak corn season, I can confirm this is the best thing I have made with corn all summer.

Fresh corn kernels are blended right into the batter of this cake until smooth. The result is a mochi cake that showcases corn at its peak, adding a nuanced dimension that layers oh-so-well with the flavours of coconut milk, vanilla and butter. Did I mention how low-effort this is? Everything goes into the blender to make the batter. Honestly, the hardest part is waiting for the cake to cool before tearing into it.

slices of sweet corn mochi cake on a blue plate

Sweet Corn Mochi Cake

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 60 minutes
Total Time: 70 minutes
Servings: 16 pieces

Ingredients:
2½ cups corn kernels, preferably fresh cut from 2-3 cobs
½ cup full fat coconut milk
¼ cup butter, melted and cooled slightly, plus more for greasing baking pan
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
½ tsp vanilla extract
2 cups glutinous rice flour (I use Koda Farms Blue Star Mochiko)
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt

Ingredients for sweet corn mochi cake on a white countertop

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease baking pan with butter. You can use any of the following pans: 8” x 8” or 9” x 9” square baking pan, 8” or 9” round baking pan or similarly-sized cast iron skillet.

2. Place corn kernels and coconut milk in a high-speed blender. Blend until very smooth. Place remaining ingredients and blend again until smooth.

Note: If you don’t have a high-speed blender, use an immersion blender or food processor to blend the corn and coconut milk until smooth. Then, in a medium bowl, whisk the “corn milk” with melted butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla until smooth. In a separate large bowl, whisk glutinous rice flour, baking powder and salt. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Whisk until very smooth and no streaks of white remain. There is no gluten in “glutinous rice flour” so you don’t need to worry about over-mixing this batter.

3. Pour batter into greased baking pan. Give the pan a few hard taps on the counter to knock out air bubbles. Bake for 40-60 minutes, or until center is set but bounces back when pushed, and edges are golden brown.

Related: 18 Fresh Corn Recipes That Are the Perfect Late-Summer Dinner

Batter for sweet corn mochi cake being poured into a baking pan

4. Set pan on a wire rack to cool fully to room temperature. If you can’t wait until it cools to room temperature, the mochi cake will be more custardy and gooey but not yet its maximum chewiness. Store in an air-tight container at room temperature up to one day or in the fridge for longer periods.

Note: Mochi cakes in general are notably less chewy with the passage of time, so be sure to eat it fresh for maximum texture.

Related: Make the Most of Corn Season with These Sweet Corn Arepas

4 slices of sweet corn mochi cake piled high on a ceramic plate

Like Sonia’s mochi cake? Try her Japanese-inspired rolled omelette next!

Vendors selling produce at a booth in the Afro-Caribbean Farmers' Market in Toronto

An Afro-Caribbean Farmers’ Market is Helping Revitalize a Toronto Neighbourhood

Farmers’ markets have become a draw in cities across Canada, offering fresh, locally grown produce, baked goods and other artisan products, but the price points make them cost-prohibitive for those on a fixed income. Toronto’s newest market is changing its surrounding community for the better, breaking down barriers and making it a welcoming place for all.

The Afro-Caribbean Farmers Market is located in the Little Jamaica-Afro Caribbean Cultural District at Eglinton West and Oakwood. Anyone familiar with the area knows that it has been a sea of construction for close to a decade because of the construction of the Eglinton Crosstown light rail line. Shops were shuttering even before the pandemic, and it’s only gotten worse since.

We spoke with Lori Beazer, Market Manager for the Afro-Caribbean Farmers Market, about its origins and how it’s already making a difference by injecting life back into the neighbourhood and reminding the city that this important cultural hub is still open for business.

The Afro-Caribbean Farmers Market in the York-Eglinton West neighbourhood of Toronto, Canada

The market first ran as a pilot project in 2017 in a different area of the city, but it didn’t have a home until a chance encounter between Beazer and Toronto City Councillor, Josh Matlow. “I bumped into Councillor Matlow in 2020, introduced myself and pitched the market,” Beazer told us. “He loved it, so we started working on it.”

Related: Food Activist and Dietitian Rosie Mensah Looks at Nutrition Through a Social Justice Lens

Fast forward to the market’s July 2021 launch in partnership with Councillor Matlow and the York-Eglinton BIA, where it found a home in Reggae Lane and the adjacent parking lot on Eglinton West. “Here we are, a year later, and it’s been well-received. Its success shows what the area was craving for so long,” said Beazer.

Visitors to this unique market can shop for clean, culturally appropriate fruits and vegetables from the Caribbean and continental African countries along with clean produce grown by local urban farmers, baked goods, fresh juices, sauces and other artisan products. “We use the word clean instead of organic because this produce is clean of any pesticides, and is grown using diatomaceous earth,” Beazer explained. “The market features clean foods that are locally grown by people that look like them. And I think for them, that’s important.”

Vendors selling homemade condiments at the Afro-Caribbean Farmers' Market in Toronto, Canada

Until this point, many farmers’ markets across the city exude a sense of exclusivity and elitism, but this is where the Afro-Caribbean Farmer’s Market is breaking the mold. “In having conversations with many of our vendors, they’ve felt a sense of racism when shopping at or even vending at other farmers’ markets,” Beazer disclosed. “We have created a platform where they’re not only able to sell their products, they’re selling out.”

Related: The World’s Biggest Rooftop Farm is in Canada — and Growing Fast

They’ve even gone as far as providing a program for those facing food insecurity called Callaloo Cash, making this farmers’ market accessible to more people, especially those in the neighbourhood. From the earliest stages of planning, the program was always going to be an important facet of this market, according to Beazer.

“I understand this area and a good majority of our population of the African diaspora rarely go to farmers’ markets because they can’t afford it. But we have urban Black farmers who need a space to sell their wares. They’re not travelling a long distance and can get to the site using less mileage and expense, which lowers the cost of their produce. Having the Callaloo Cash subsidy program allows people from the community to walk out of the market with bags of food that they paid little or nothing for. They can go home with all of these wonderful things that they know are local and clean.”

Related: Allison Gibson Talks Launching Food Businesses and Reclaiming the Term “Ethnic Food”

Since the July launch, the market is quickly becoming a destination for people in the neighbourhood. “It has become important to the community,” Beazer shared. “They’re grateful to have something to do on a Sunday in this area. They can invite family to their homes and go to the market together for coconut water and sugar cane, or some jerk chicken with rice and peas.”

Vendors selling produce at a booth in the Afro-Caribbean Farmers' Market in Toronto

A market does so much more than provide food and a sense of community. Farmers’ Markets Ontario, the organization that represents over 180 markets across the province, has researched and proven that real estate values increase in neighbourhoods following the launch of a farmers’ market, something that Beazer has already witnessed in the area. “The community members, homeowners, and business owners have already seen the benefits of the farmers’ market being mentioned in their postal code. And that’s incredible.”

She continued, “The community wants the market here because they see the benefits. The stores see the benefits and open if they’re not typically open on a Sunday. The foot traffic has been close to a thousand people every Sunday since it started, many of who wouldn’t have normally visited Eglinton West. Our vendors sell out of their products, which has never happened to them at other farmers’ markets in the city. It’s a great place to be with a fantastic vibe.”

Related: How Food Injustice Inspired This 23-Year-Old to Start Her Own Farm, Plus Her Advice for You

Despite support from Councillor Matlow and Ontario MPP Jill Andrew, the Toronto Parking Authority, which owns the lot where the market takes place, hasn’t been supportive according to Beazer. “Every farmers’ market has its challenges and we have ours. This market is dealing with some really ugly things because of this space that we’re in. The Toronto Parking Authority is not doing what they need to do for the space. They’re disrespecting the vendors by not keeping the lot clean for us.”

In fact, Beazer has taken on the site clean-up since the first day of the market and tearfully described the human waste that she faces each week when she arrives. “Every Sunday at 8AM, I head to the market site with anxiety because I don’t know what I’m going to find. Without fail, I have to clean it up myself before the vendors arrive.”

An assortment of freshly baked bread for sale at the Afro-Caribbean Farmers' Market in Toronto, Canada

Ideally, Beazer wants this market to happen annually, and as part of that, she would love to see this space returned to the community. She envisions it as a hub for art shows, yoga classes, movie nights, children’s activities and so much more beyond the farmers’ market. “This project was really supposed to help change the attitudes of people that live in the area that haven’t come to Eglinton West for 15 years because they were afraid. By bringing food and culture to this neighbourhood through the Afro-Caribbean Farmers’ Market, we can start to change that footprint.”

Related: Vegan West African Peanut Lentil Stew: The Comfort Food You Need

Beazer also believes that there is magic in this space, especially in the Reggae Lane mural created by artist Adrian Hayles. “When the sun comes out and hits the mural, it comes to life. The talk of the community is that the elders from the mural that have transitioned join us at the market.” She added, “Hayles is creating another mural on the opposite side. Should the market happen again next year, the whole space will be filled with beautiful art.”

The Afro-Caribbean Farmers’ Market runs every Sunday from 11AM to 3PM until October 3 in Reggae Lane and the Green P Carpark at 1531 Eglinton Avenue West in Toronto.

sweet corn arepas on a grey plate

Make the Most of Corn Season with These Sweet Corn Arepas

Sweet corn arepas, or chocolo arepas, are sweet and cheesy. I lean toward adding both queso fresco and Manchego cheese to the dough for a more interesting taste, rather than mozzarella. But I leave it up to you… The key is to get your griddle very hot so that a nice crusty outer layer forms. In my desire to make this a full meal — breakfast for dinner, that is—I toss together a tomato and avocado salad to cut through the richness.

sweet corn arepas on a grey plate

Sweet Corn Arepas

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Rest Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients:

Arepas
1 cup sweet yellow corn kernels
1 cup pre-cooked yellow cornmeal or Masa Arepa
3 tablespoons sugar
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup quesito or fresh ricotta cheese
½ cup grated Manchego or Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons butter, melted, plus 2 tablespoons
¾ cup 2% milk

Raw Tomato & Avocado Salad
2 cups ripe cherry tomatoes, halved crosswise
2 Hass avocados, pitted, peeled, and cubed
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Flaky salt and freshly ground black pepper

To serve
4 ounces quesito or queso fresco, crumbled
½ cup cilantro leaves

Directions:

1. Grind the corn in a food processor until the kernels break apart and the mixture is smooth. Transfer the ground corn to a large bowl and add the cornmeal, sugar, flour, baking powder, salt, the ricotta cheese, and Manchego cheese. Using a wooden spoon, mix the ingredients to combine. Add the 3 tablespoons butter and the milk and stir until the mixture comes together. Do not overmix. In the beginning, your mixture will look like a very loose pancake batter. Don’t fret, the cornmeal will take a few minutes to absorb
the liquid and achieve a better consistency. Allow the dough to rest for 10 to 15 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, prepare the raw tomato and avocado salad: In a medium bowl, combine the tomatoes and avocados. Add the lemon juice and olive oil and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

4. Preheat a large cast-iron skillet or griddle over medium-high heat. Melt the 2 tablespoons butter until bubbles form. Measure ½ cup of the batter and pour into the pan — pancake style. You can fry the arepas 2 at a time or more, depending on the size of your skillet. Do not crowd the skillet. Cook the arepas until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side. You may need to turn down the heat as you go so that the pan doesn’t get too hot from batch to batch. Place the finished arepas on the baking sheet and keep warm in the oven. Repeat with the remaining batter.

5. To serve, plate each arepa and top with a spoonful of the tomato and avocado salad, the crumbled quesito, and cilantro leaves

From the book COLOMBIANA by Mariana Velásquez Villegas. Copyright © 2021 by Mariana Velásquez Villegas. Published by Harper Wave, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. Reprinted by permission. Photos by Gentl & Hyer.

COLOMBIANA: A Rediscovery of Recipes and Rituals from the Soul of Colombia, Amazon, $40.

All products featured on Food Network Canada are independently selected by our editors. For more products handpicked by our editorial team, visit Food Network Canada’s Amazon storefront. However, when you buy through links in this article or on our storefront, we earn an affiliate commission.

Valerie Bertinelli's roasted beets with herbs in a blue bowl

How to Grow Fall Vegetables and What to Do With Them

Sweater weather is near, but growing season is far from over. Just because the days are shorter and the temperatures are dropping, it doesn’t mean you have to abandon your garden. Want your very own harvest of autumn produce? Here are the fall vegetables you should consider and some recipes to try once they’re ready to pick.

Related: Ina Garten’s Most Comforting Casseroles

How to Grow Garlic

If you’re new to fall gardening, growing garlic is a good place to start. If you’ve ever wonder how to grow garlic, it can be easily planted mid-autumn in a sunny spot with soil that is well-drained. Separate the cloves and set them with the pointed end up and the root side down in rows that are at least one foot or 30 centimetres apart — and you should have some new bulbs by late fall. Take your freshly harvested garlic and roast it, pickle it or add it to  your favourite dishes. Interested in growing garlic indoors? While you can’t grow bulbs if you don’t have any outdoor space, you can easily grow garlic greens in a pot on a sunny window ledge. In about 7 to 10 days, you can snip the greens and add them to soups, salads, baked potatoes and more.

A chicken breast cooked to a golden finish with whole cloves of garlic and a creamy sauce

Get the recipe: The Barefoot Contessa’s Chicken With Forty Cloves of Garlic

How to Grow Cauliflower

It may be the most challenging vegetable in the cabbage family to cultivate, but fall is the perfect time for growing cauliflower. The secret is to start your seeds indoors about four weeks before you plan to plant them. Once the seedlings are ready, select a spot in your yard where they’ll get lots of light and be sure to water them so they grow quickly. Plant them outside when it’s between 18°C and 24°C for a late fall or early winter harvest. Once the florets are densely formed, the cauliflower is ready to harvest. Serve as a side dish with Sunday roast, toss it into a stir-fry or use it in a low-carb mac and cheese.

See More: Cauliflower Recipes We Can’t Get Enough Of

Cauliflower prepared popcorn style with a red Korean gochujang sauce

Get the recipe: Korean Gochujang Cauliflower Popcorn

How to Grow Beets

Beets are a fall harvest favourite that is best grown from seeds. Plant them in mid-summer or early fall — at least eight weeks before the first heavy frost — in an area with full sun and well-loosened soil. To speed up germination, soak the seeds in water for 24 hours before planting. After planting, add a thin layer of mulch to keep the roots cool on warmer days. When you’re growing beets, you’ll want to give them water regularly to develop healthy roots. Harvest when they’re anywhere from the size of a golf ball to a tennis ball. And don’t discard those greens! They’re packed with nutrients and a tasty whether sautéed on their own or added to pastas and soups.

Roasted red beet quarters tossed with fresh tarragon and parsley

Get the recipe: Valerie Bertinelli’s Roasted Beets With Herbs

How to Grow Brussels Sprouts

It takes patience to grow Brussels sprouts, but they are an easy crop that takes up minimal space in your garden. The seeds have to be planted six to 10 weeks before the first frost in rows three feet or 90 centimetres apart. Water them weekly and harvest after the first fall frost for the sweetest flavour. Twist them off the stem when you’re ready to cook them and any remaining sprouts will stay on the plants through part of the winter, even after the snow has begun. If you plant your seeds in the fall, don’t expect any sprouts until late winter or early spring. Roast them with bacon and maple syrup, shave them into a salad or even try them in your air fryer.

Get the recipe: Orecchiette With Vegan Sausage and Brussels Sprouts

How to Grow Broccoli

Growing broccoli takes time and extra care. You’ll have to plant the seeds in early fall, well before the first frost of the season. Plant them 18 to 24 inches or 45 to 60 centimetres apart in well-drained soil that gets at least eight hours of sun per day, ideally a partially-shaded area. There are so many ways to enjoy fresh broccoli, whether you include it in a sheet pan dinner or serve it steamed with melted Cheddar on top.

Related: Delicious Ways to Use Up Broccoli Stems

Slices of beef and broccoli florets on wooden skewers with teriyaki sauce

Get the recipe: Broccoli Beef Skewers With Teriyaki Glaze

How to Grow Pumpkins

Bright orange gourds and fall go hand in hand. Early June is the time to start thinking about planting as the seeds need warm soil to get started. They also need ample space for the long, rambling vines. Once planted, give them a deep watering of about one inch per week and adjust the amount depending on rainfall to prevent the vines from rotting. Once the pumpkins begin to grow on the vines, you’ll need to raise them off the ground using supports for even colouring and shape. If you have limited space, but still want to grow a pumpkin or two, plant smaller sugar pumpkins that are perfect for cooking and baking. They’re perfect for pies, cakes and soups.

See More: What’s in Season? Your Guide to Canadian Fruits and Vegetables

Orange pumpkin soup served in white bowls topped with fresh herbs

Get the recipe: Vegan Pumpkin Soup

Don’t know the difference between butternut and acorn squash? Our ultimate squash guide breaks it down for you.

What’s in Season? Your Guide to Canadian Fruits and Vegetables

Crisp lettuce and juicy tomatoes in your favourite salad. A ripe peach fresh from the farmstand. Sweet, earthy leeks in a creamy soup. Is your mouth watering yet? As Canadians, we have a plethora of seasonal produce at our fingertips throughout the year and knowing what and when to buy seasonally empowers home cooks with the best local flavours possible. Whether you are looking to shop local or support Canadian farmers across the country,  make food shopping a breeze all year round with our Canadian seasonal produce guide covering January to December.  Grab your tote bags and get shopping – bounty awaits!

What’s in Season in  Winter

The dead of winter brings the blahs for most of us. Winter fare, however, can be quite inspiring. Think warm soups and stews, gorgeous roasts with luscious mashed or roasted potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash and rutabagas. Fry onion rings and add sauteed garlic to everything. Braise cabbage or roll it around meat and rice filling for cabbage roll perfection. Dream even bigger with a moist, cream cheese frosted carrot or parsnip cake (yes, parsnip cake!) or rich, dark and dreamy chocolate beet cake. With dishes like these, winter won’t seem long enough!

potatoes-white-red-in-basket

What’s in Season in December

Pears, Brussels Sprouts, Rutabagas, Turnips, Beets, Carrots, Cabbage, Red Onions, Garlic, Leeks, Potatoes, Squash, Sweet Potatoes, Pears

What’s in Season in January

Rutabagas, Turnips, Beets, Carrots, Cabbage, Red Onions, Garlic, Leeks, Potatoes, Squash, Sweet Potatoes

Related: The Best Ingredients to Cook With in Canada This Winter (Plus Recipes)

What’s in Season in February

Rutabagas, Turnips, Beets, Carrots, Cabbage, Red Onions, Garlic, Leeks, Potatoes, Squash, Sweet Potatoes

What’s in Season in March

Rutabagas, Turnips, Beets, Carrots, Cabbage, Red Onions, Garlic, Leeks, Potatoes, Squash, Sweet Potatoes

What’s in Season in Spring

As the seasons change, so does the fresh produce. Asparagus arrives in April in British Columbia, May in the rest of the country, continuing into July towards the East Coast — along with fiddleheads, radishes, spinach and later peas, beans, cauliflower and broccoli. We begin to see fresh lettuce and radicchio, along with celery and fennel in British Columbia, following in July in the rest of Canada. Fruit also begins with outdoor rhubarb, as well as strawberries and cherries in May, continuing into July. Make the most of these months with light pastas, simple salads, pies, tarts and where weather allows — a little grilling.

asparagus-cooked-sauce

What’s in Season in April

Asparagus, Radishes, Fiddleheads, Spinach, Fava Beans,  Rhubarb, Peppers (greenhouse), Tomatoes (greenhouse)

What’s in Season in May

Asparagus, Radishes, Fiddleheads, Spinach, Rhubarb, Kale, Salad Greens, Morel Mushrooms, Arugula, Swiss Chard, Green Onions, Peas, Cherries

Related: Our Fave Spring Dishes That Celebrate Seasonal Vegetables

What’s in Season in June

Asparagus, Radishes, Spinach, Rhubarb, Kale, Salad Greens, Arugula, Beets, Lettuce, Green Onions, Gooseberries, Saskatoon Berries, Strawberries, Broccoli, Celery, Swiss Chard, Garlic (Fresh), Peas, Summer Squash, Tomatoes, Turnips, Zucchini, Fennel, Cherries

What’s in Season in Summer

As summer hits, things kick into high gear with seemingly unending produce options. Stone fruits like peaches, plums, apricots and later nectarines burst onto the scene, tending towards an earlier arrival in British Columbia, soon ripening across the country and finally arriving in the Atlantic provinces in September. Berries also arrive this time of year, making it the perfect opportunity for crumbles, preserves and general good eating. Melons are now in full bloom, begging to be soaked in summery sangrias, wrapped in prosciutto and added to salads. And early pears and apples make their way onto the scene in late August, rounding out fruit season. Vegetables like homegrown corn, peppers, tomatoes, zucchini and rapini are now in their prime. It’s also the start of leek and eggplant season in August.

fresh-strawberries-in-a-basket

What’s in Season in July

Gooseberries, Saskatoon Berries, Strawberries, Raspberries, Currants, Cherries, Blackberries, Apricots, Nectarines, Green Beans, Broccoli, Carrots, Cauliflower,  Celery, Swiss Chard, Cucumber, Garlic (Fresh), Leeks,  Lettuce, Green Onions, Peas, Peppers, Potatoes (New), Radishes, Rhubarb, Salad Greens, Spinach, Summer Squash, Tomatoes, Turnips,  Zucchini, Beets, Peaches, Watermelon, Kale

Related: Ina Garten’s Best Summer Dinner Recipes

What’s in Season in August

Raspberries, Currants, Cherries, Blackberries, Apricots, Apples, Crab Apples, Blueberries, Gooseberries, Melons, Nectarines, Pears, Plums, Prunes, Strawberries, Artichokes, Green Beans, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower,  Celery, Swiss Chard,  Corn, Cucumber, Garlic (Fresh),  Leeks,  Lettuce, Green Onions, Parsnips,  Peppers,  Potatoes (New), Radishes, Rhubarb, Rutabagas,  Salad Greens, Shallots, Spinach, Summer Squash, Tomatoes, Turnips,  Zucchini, Beets, Eggplants, Grapes,  Peaches, Watermelon, Kale, Pears

What’s in Season in Fall

We end our big season on a high note with pumpkin, leeks, eggplant, Brussels sprouts, cranberries, crabapples and the continuation from August of muskmelon and grapes. We begin to crave in-season apples and pears — and as cool weather approaches, so does the need for warmer dishes. Back indoors, get set for roasting, holiday feasting and all of the apple desserts.

fall-apples-on-a-cutting-board

What’s in Season in September

Cranberries, Apples, Crab Apples, Blueberries, Grapes, Melons, Pears, Plums, Prunes, Artichokes, Green Beans, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower,  Celery, Swiss Chard, Corn, Cucumber, Garlic (Fresh), Leeks,  Lettuce, Green Onions, Onions, Parsnips, Peppers, Potatoes (New), Pumpkin, Radishes, Rutabagas, Salad Greens, Spinach, Tomatoes, Turnips,  Zucchini, Beets, Eggplants, Nectarines, Watermelon, Kale

What’s in Season in October

Cranberries, Apples, Crab Apples, Pears, Quince, Artichokes, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower,  Celery, Swiss Chard, Corn, Garlic (Fresh),  Leeks,  Lettuce, Green Onions, Onions, Parsnips,  Peppers, Potatoes, Pumpkin, Radishes, Rutabagas, Salad Greens, Spinach, Turnips, Beets, Eggplants, Kale

Related: Our Most Popular Fall Recipes on Pinterest

What’s in Season in November

Cranberries, Pears, Quince, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower,  Leeks, Onions, Parsnips, Potatoes, Pumpkin, Radishes, Rutabagas, Turnips, Apples, Beets

What’s in Season in Canada Year-Round

Don’t forget about options available regardless of the season. Take mushrooms, for instance, which are grown year-round and across the country. In addition, many greenhouse farms are using methods that help cut down on waste and reuse water, soil and energy, producing year-round. Cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes and lettuce are excellent greenhouse-bought options in winter when local outdoor choices have dwindled so you can enjoy a taste of summer, whatever the weather.

mushrooms-crimini

Published May 5, 2018, Updated April 7, 2021

Photos courtesy of Getty Images

Nothing Says Fall More Than This Sumac-Spiced Roasted Delicata With Tahini Lemon Drizzle

When there’s a dish that incorporates all of our favourite things — squash, tahini and sumac — we know it’s a good one. Delicata squash is a fall delicacy — it’s only available in the autumn months, so take advantage now! You don’t have to peel it (woohoo!), and since it’s on the smaller side, it cooks fairly quickly, unlike other heartier squashes. It’s sweet and earthy and so perfectly takes on the natural lemony flavour of sumac. Once roasted, grab some kale and tahini drizzle — and for pops of juicy, fruity flavour, some craisins or pomegranate seeds. This dish is the epitome of fall flavours we love.

Sumac-Spiced Roasted Delicata With Tahini Lemon Drizzle

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients:

2 delicata squash, halved, de-seeded and sliced into ¼ -inch thick semi circles
1 red onion, sliced into strips
1-2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tsp sumac
½ tsp sea salt, divided
Pinch of pepper
¼ cup tahini
¼ cup cold water
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 small garlic clove, minced
3 cups chopped kale
½ cup toasted walnuts
½ cup craisins or pomegranate seeds
Few Tbsp freshly chopped parsley

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Prep the squash and onion, place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

2. Drizzle olive oil on top and season with sumac, ¼ tsp salt and pepper. Toss around. Then roast in the oven for 20 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, prep the tahini sauce in a bowl. Mix together tahini, cold water, lemon juice, garlic and ¼ tsp salt.

4. On a long platter or in a big bowl, place the chopped kale. Add a pinch of salt and a small drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Begin massaging the kale (basically, just squeezing the kale in your hands) to help make it more digestible and easier to eat.

5. Layer the roasted squash and onion on top. Scatter the toasted walnuts, craisins and parsley on top, then drizzle the tahini sauce.

Like Tamara and Sarah’s sumac-spiced delicata? Try their slow cooker beef Bolognese or their no-bake chocolate oat bars.

Easy Paleo Butternut Squash Tart Recipe: Your Fave Seasonal Squash Transformed!

We can all agree that the fall season is popular for all things pumpkin, particularly pies and tarts. However, you can also enjoy delicious fall desserts by transforming another seasonal favourite into a tasty tart. Introducing this rustic paleo butternut squash tart, made with a grain-free crust and a decadent buttery filling. It’s easy to make and a great way to enjoy butternut squash all season long.

Paleo Butternut Squash Tart

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Rest Time: 2 hours
Bake Time: 55 to 60 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes
Servings: 6 to 8

Ingredients:

Crust
1 ¼ cup almond flour
½ cup arrowroot starch or tapioca starch
1 Tbsp cane sugar
½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp kosher salt
1 stick unsalted cold butter, cubed
¼ cup ice water

Filling
2 cups cooked and pureed butternut squash
½ cup pure maple syrup
2 Tbsp paleo-approved brown sugar
4 ½ tsp arrowroot starch or tapioca starch
1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
1 stick unsalted room temperature butter
2 eggs
3 tsp pure vanilla extract
¼ cup warm water

Tip: To save time, you can purchase frozen prepared butternut squash cubes. Heat them up with 1.5 Tbsp of water in the microwave on high for five minutes. Puree in a food processor or blender until smooth.

Directions:

1. In a large bowl or a food processor, start by combining the almond flour, starch, sugar, cinnamon, salt and butter until the batter is crumbly. Add in 1 tsp of ice water at a time until the dough starts coming together. You may not need the full ¼ cup of ice water in the event that your dough already sticks together, so play it by ear. Once your dough is formed, but not too sticky, flatten it out into a 1 inch disk and wrap in saran wrap. Refrigerate for two hours or overnight.

Related: The Ultimate Squash Guide: All the Varieties and Their Best Uses

2. When your dough is ready to roll out, remove from the fridge and preheat your oven to 350°F. Roll out the dough between two pieces of parchment paper into a 10 inch round disk. If you find that the dough is too hard to roll, leave it at room temperature for about a minute. Remove the parchment paper and transfer the dough into a greased 10-inch round tart pan. Press the dough into the pan until all the edges are covered, then return it to the fridge.

3. Combine all filling ingredients in a large bowl. Using a hand mixer, mix for 3 minutes until you get a smooth batter. It’s normal to see tiny clumps of butter in the batter after mixing.

4. Pour the filling into the tart crust and place the tart pan on a baking sheet. Place the tart in the oven and bake for 55 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. When ready, cool the tart on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Serve with toppings of choice.

Like Valerie’s paleo butternut squash tart? Try her 30-minute low-carb lamb burger recipe.

Strawberry Rhubarb Dessert Empanadas with Quick Salsa

Strawberry Rhubarb Dessert Empanadas With a Quick Fruit Salsa

Empanadas are those wildly popular half-moon shaped pastries seen throughout Latin America, and commonly stuffed with savoury ingredients like seafood, meat and cheese, and that’s just the beginning. These portable pies are the original “hot pockets”, and can also be filled with beautiful seasonal fruit and enjoyed on-the-go.

Strawberry Rhubarb Dessert Empanadas with Quick Salsa

Strawberry Rhubarb Dessert Empanadas with Quick Salsa

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours (accounts for chill time)
Servings: 10

Ingredients:

Dough
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp granulated sugar
tsp salt
½ cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
⅓ cup 2% Greek yogurt or Balkan-style yogurt
2-3 Tbsp ice water
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp water

Filling
1 ¼ cups chopped rhubarb, cut in ½-inch pieces
½ cup hulled strawberries, cut in ½-inch pieces
½ cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp granulated sugar (optional)

Rhubarb Strawberry Salsa
⅓ cup finely chopped rhubarb
3 strawberries, hulled and finely chopped
1 Tbsp finely chopped mint
1 tsp granulated sugar

Kitchen Tip: To freeze your overflowing rhubarb bounty, peel off excess tough fibres and trim the ends. Wash, dry and cut in 1-inch pieces and freeze on a tray. Store in small resealable freezer bags, removing excess air for up to 6 months, and enjoy the blushing fruit throughout the year.

Directions:

Dough
1. In a large bowl, whisk flour, sugar and salt. Add butter; using hands, rub together until coarse crumbs form. Stir in yogurt and cold water until ragged dough forms.
2. Transfer to a floured surface; gather and lightly knead into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and flatten into disc. Refrigerate until firm, 1 hour or up to 2 days.
3. On a floured surface, roll out dough to ¼-inch thickness. Using a 5-inch round cookie cutter, cut out 10 rounds, re-rolling scraps. Refrigerate until firm, if needed.
4. Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Filling
1. In a bowl, toss rhubarb, strawberries, sugar and cornstarch until combined.
2. Spoon 2 rounded Tbsp of the rhubarb mixture onto centre of each round. Fold dough over the filling to form a half moon, starting at pointed edges, pressing well to seal.
3. Crimp edge with a fork; return to prepared baking sheet and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
4. Cut steam vents on top of each pie. Whisk together egg and water to make egg wash; brush over empanada and sprinkle with sugar (if using).
5. Bake until puffed up and golden brown, 18 to 20 minutes. Let cool on a rack.

Rhubarb Strawberry Salsa
Meanwhile, stir together rhubarb, strawberries, mint and sugar in a small bowl. Serve with empanadas.

Kitchen Tip: Don’t worry if the filling bubbles out during the cooking process, it’s the nature of fruit pies to generously drip out, and it’s a good indicator that the thickener is thoroughly cooked.

Strawberry and rhubarb are an unbeatable summer duo, and these 20 Spectacular Strawberry Rhubarb Desserts are here to prove it.

No-Bake Pumpkin Spice Latte Pretzel Pie (No Pastry Skills Required!)

For those who avoid making pie dough at all costs, this cream pie-style “PSL” is just the ticket. A no-bake, salty-sweet pretzel crust holds a stove top pumpkin-coffee filling, all topped with maple whipped cream. It’s a taste of fall’s famous café beverage in delicious dessert form, and perfect for autumnal entertaining this Thanksgiving and beyond.

No-Bake Pumpkin Spice Latte Pretzel Pie

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Cool Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 35 minutes
Makes: 1, 9-inch pie

Ingredients:

Pumpkin Spice Latte Pudding
1¾ cup whole milk
¾ cup canned pumpkin purée (not pie filling)
1½ Tbsp ground coffee (regular or decaf), plus more to garnish
½ cup dark brown sugar
½ cup cornstarch
5 large egg yolks
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
½ tsp kosher salt
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract

Pretzel Crust
20 pretzel twists (from a 200g bag, about 1/3 bag)
16 square or 8 sheets (150g, 1 sleeve) graham crackers
½ cup dark brown sugar
¼ tsp kosher salt
½ cup unsalted butter, melted

Topping
1 cup fridge-cold heavy cream
1 Tbsp fridge-cold maple syrup

Directions:

Pumpkin Spice Latte Pudding
1. In a medium saucepan, whisk to combine milk, pumpkin and coffee. Heat over medium-low heat, whisking often, until steaming.
2. Meanwhile, in a medium heatproof bowl, whisk to combine brown sugar, cornstarch, pumpkin pie spice and salt; whisk in the egg yolks.
3.
Temper the egg mixture by pouring in one-third of the hot milk mixture while whisking constantly. Return tempered egg and milk mixture to the pot and continue to whisk constantly for 5 to 10 minutes, until the mixture has thickened considerably. Make sure a few large bubbles pop in the centre – this ensures an enzyme in the egg breaks down so your pudding will stay firm, not loosen once cool.

4. Remove the pot from the heat and whisk in butter and vanilla. Press through a fine mesh sieve over a large clean bowl, discard any coffee solids in the sieve and press plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding.
5. Cool to almost room temperature, and then refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours.

Pretzel Crust
1. In a food processor or blender, pulse pretzels, graham crackers, brown sugar and salt until pulverized.
2. Tip into a large bowl and stir in melted butter until fully combined and mixture holds together when pressed between two fingers (if it won’t hold its shape, add more melted butter or plain water, 1 tablespoon at time until it does).
3. Firmly press the crust into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate.
4. Refrigerate the crust to firm up while you wait for the pudding to cool down.

Assembly
1. Once the pudding mixture has cooled and the crust is chilled, spread the cold, thick pudding evenly over the crust using an offset spatula or the back of a spoon to help.

2. Place the same piece of plastic wrap over the pudding portion of the pie again and refrigerate to firm up and come together, at least 1 hour or up to 2 days (before topping with whipped cream).

Topping
1. Right before serving, whip the cream to medium-stiff peaks, adding the maple syrup when it’s almost reached its full volume.

2. Remove plastic wrap from pie and dollop or pipe over whipped cream, swooshing haphazardly or being neat and tidy. Sprinkle with a touch of additional ground coffee. Slice and serve.

Here are 50 more creative recipes to use up the rest of that can of pumpkin purée, plus 45 perfect pumpkin desserts and 30 delicious ways to get your pumpkin spice fix.

This Heirloom Tomato Galette is a Summer Show-Stopper

Sun-ripened tomatoes are my favourite thing about the late summer. They taste so fresh and sweet. I remember my grandma slicing up tomatoes from her garden, drizzling them generously with olive oil and sprinkling with sea salt, to serve to us as the perfect snack. Sometimes the simplest things in life are the best. Maybe it’s the Italian in me, but I can’t help but love every variety of tomato. This galette combines a rainbow of heirloom tomatoes, but regular red cherry tomatoes will do the trick.

Heirloom Tomato Galette

Prep Time: 25 minutes (prep pie dough ahead of time)
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 70 minutes
Serves: 6 to 8

Ingredients:

Single Pie Dough
½ cups all-purpose flour, sifted
¼ tsp fine salt
⅓ cup unsalted butter, cold and cubed
3 Tbsp shortening, cold
¼ cup ice water

Galette
1 batch Single Pie Dough, chilled
⅓ cup basil pesto, homemade or store-bought
½ cup thinly sliced fresh mozzarella cheese
2 cups mixed heirloom cherry tomatoes, halved
2 Tbsp extra- virgin olive oil
Pinch of fine salt
Pinch of freshly ground pepper
1 egg, whisked, for egg wash
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

Single Pie Dough
1. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour and salt. Add the butter and shortening. Using your hands or a pastry cutter, work the butter and shortening until the mixture forms pea-sized crumbs. Add the water 1 Tbsp at a time, tossing until the dough begins to come together.
2. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and shape into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Use within 2 days or freeze for up to 2 weeks. Thaw in the fridge the day before using.

Galette
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pie dough into a circle that is ¼ inch (5 mm) thick. Gently lift and transfer the dough to the prepared baking sheet.
3. Brush the dough with the pesto, leaving a 1-inch (2.5 cm) border. Layer the mozzarella over the pesto.
4. In a large mixing bowl toss together the tomatoes, oil, salt and pepper. Spread the tomatoes over the cheese. Gently fold the dough border over, pleating it as needed. Brush dough with the egg wash and sprinkle the edges with the Parmesan.
5. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and the tomatoes burst. Serve immediately.

Recipe Excerpt:
Excerpted from Bake the Seasons: Sweet and Savoury Dishes to Enjoy Throughout The Year by Marcella DiLonardo. Copyright © 2019 Marcella DiLonardo. Photography by Marcella DiLonardo. Published by Penguin Canada®, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved. 

This Simple Cherry Crisp Will Make Your Summer That Much Sweeter

Nothing complements a summertime meal quite like a fruit-laden dessert – and this cherry crisp is easier to make than pie. There’s no better way to showcase the popular summer fruit in its prime than with a sweet, buttery golden oat topping that beautifully contrasts with the warm fruit beneath. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream that can melt into both layers.

Easy Summer Cherry Crisp

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

Topping
½ cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup old fashioned rolled oats
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
¼ cup unsalted butter, melted

Filling
6 cups cherries, pitted and halved
½ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup cornstarch

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, oats, cinnamon and salt. Stir in butter until combined.
3. In a large bowl, combine cherries and sugar. Let stand 5 minutes. Stir in cornstarch and pour into 9×5-inch pan. Sprinkle with oat mixture.

4. Bake until fruit is bubbling and topping is golden brown, about 40 minutes, covering with aluminum foil to prevent excess browning if necessary. Let cool 20 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Looking for more desserts that will satisfy your sweet tooth? We have 20 grilled desserts you can make on the BBQ, plus 40+ no-bake desserts you need to make this summer.

30-Minute Pasta with Green Garlic Pesto and Roasted Tomatoes

It’s always exciting when the farmers’ market stands start to show signs of spring and summer. Often, though, this produce doesn’t stick around for very long, so you need to take advantage when it’s available. One way of making spring last a little longer is to make pesto from some of the best seasonal offerings – in this case, green garlic (also known as young garlic that boasts a milder, more delicate flavour) but you can easily substitute for garlic scapes or ramps – then freeze to relish the flavours even when they’ve disappeared from the market.

The best thing about this recipe? Even though it features a few different components, if you multitask, it’s ready in about 30 minutes – leaving you more time to enjoy those lovely longer daylight hours we’re all so grateful for this time of year.

Spring Pasta with Green Garlic Pesto and Roasted Tomatoes

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients: 

Pasta
250g dried bucatini pasta

Roasted Tomatoes
3 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
Olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Pesto
6-8 green garlic shoots
1 cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated (approx.)
⅓ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
½ – ¾ cup olive oil
½ tsp salt

Assembly
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Fresh basil leaves

Directions:

1. Pre-heat the oven to 400˚F.
2. Line a baking tray with parchment paper and lay the tomatoes in a single layer on the tray.
3. Drizzle with a little olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
4. Roast the tomatoes for 15 minutes, remove from the oven and set aside.
5. While the tomatoes are roasting, prepare the pasta. Cook according to the directions on the package. Drain and set aside.
6. Make the pesto: Clean and trim the green garlic, and roughly chop.
7. Place the green garlic in a food processor with the Parmesan and the pumpkin seeds.
8. Start processing the mixture, slowly pouring in the oil until you reach your preferred consistency. Season to taste with salt.
9. Add approximately ½ cup of pesto to the pasta, using tongs to toss so the pasta is completely coated. Season with flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
10. Divide the pasta between four bowls, and top with the roasted tomatoes. Serve with freshly grated Parmesan and fresh basil leaves.

Notes:
● This makes approximately 1 cup of pesto, which is more than you’ll need for this recipe.
● If you won’t use the pesto immediately, place it in the fridge with a piece of plastic wrap touching the surface. You can also freeze the pesto for up to 2 months (in ice cube trays for convenient portioning!)

Looking for more easy and ultra-satisfying pasta recipes for spring? This 15-minute three-cheese pasta with peas is a seasonal must-make. We’ve also rounded up 25 spring dinners ready in 30 minutes or less.

pumpkin-seed-feature-image

The Best Pumpkin Seed Granola to Make When Pumpkin Carving

Roasted pumpkin seeds are a delicious way to turn your Jack O’Lantern innards into a tasty treat. But this crunchy and flavourful pumpkin seed granola takes your favourite season snack one step further. Crunchy nuts and seeds are mixed with cinnamon and maple syrup, then baked with oats and coconut make a sweet and simple granola you’ll want to eat by the handful. Finish off by stirring in dried cranberries and a little cayenne for subtle heat. Eat for breakfast or save for snacking as you wait for trick-or-treaters.

pumpkin-seed-granola-in-jar

Pumpkin Seed Granola Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 1hr 5 minutes (includes 20 minutes cooling)
Makes: 4-1/2 cups

Ingredients:
1/4 cup maple syrup
3 Tbsp canola oil
2 Tbsp packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1-1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup raw pumpkin seeds (cleaned and dried if removed from carving pumpkin)
1/2 cup shaved coconut
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup dried cranberries

pumpkin-seed-granola-recipe

Directions:
1. Heat oven to 300°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together maple syrup, oil, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and cayenne.
3. In a large bowl, combine oats, pumpkin seeds, coconut, pecans and sunflower seeds. Pour oil mixture over and stir to combine.
4. Spoon mixture onto prepared sheet and bake until golden, stirring halfway about 35 to 40 minutes.
5. Cool completely and stir in cranberries.

pumpkin-granola-yogurt

Looking for more roast pumpkin seed recipes? Try these Tasty Ways to Use Pumpkin Seeds.

Peach-and-Proscuitto-toast-on-plate

These Fresh, Easy Appetizers Will Save Your Summer

Summer entertaining doesn’t have to be fancy. In fact, it can be as easy as toast … especially when you can lean on the abundance of beautiful fresh stone fruit that is soon to be in season. We’d love to show how to turn your fruit bowl into an easy summer appetizer, with a baguette and some simple toppings.

Peach-and-Proscuitto-toast

Peach & Prosciutto Crostini Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Makes: 12 crostini

Ingredients:
1 demi baguette, cut diagonally into 12 slices
12 slices prosciutto or speck
1 ripe peach, cut into thin wedges
1/4 cup pistachios, roughly chopped
1/4 cup basil, torn
Good quality olive oil to garnish

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Arrange baguette slices on a baking sheet, then drizzle with oil. Bake until golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Cool slightly, then drape 1 piece of prosciutto over each toast. Top each with 2 peach wedges. Garnish toasts with pistachios and basil, then finish with a drizzle of olive oil.

Plum & Ricotta Crostini Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Makes: 12 crostini

Ingredients:
1 demi baguette, cut diagonally into 12 slices
3/4 cup ricotta
1 ripe plum, cut into thin slices
2 Tbsp balsamic glaze
3 Tbsp pine nuts, toasted
1 Tbsp tarragon, finely chopped

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Arrange baguette slices on a baking sheet, then drizzle with oil. Bake until golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Cool slightly, then smear 1 Tbsp ricotta over each toast. Top each with 3 plum slices. Drizzle with balsamic glaze, then garnish with pine nuts and tarragon.

Cherry & Goat Cheese Crostini Recipes

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Makes: 12 crostini

Ingredients:
1 demi baguette, cut diagonally into 12 slices
1 1/2 cups cherries, pitted and halved
1/4 cup goat cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup almonds, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves
freshly ground black pepper to garnish

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Arrange baguette slices on a baking sheet, then drizzle with oil. Bake until golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Cool slightly, then divide cherries between toasts. Top with goat cheese and almonds. Drizzle with honey, then garnish with thyme and a crack of freshly ground black pepper.

Fruit-Toasts-spread

Looking for more recipes? Try these Sensational Summer Appetizers Your Guests Will Love.

Fiddlehead-tart-slided

Savour Spring With This Fresh Fiddlehead Tart

The first signs of bring a sigh of relief into the kitchen. No more cold cellar scrounging or heavy stews filled with root vegetables. The thawing earth brings the first bounty of fresh, wild food: maple syrup, wild leeks and fiddleheads. The fiddlehead is the small curled frond of a young fern with a delicious earthy flavour, similar to a green bean. Despite their relatively short growing and harvesting season, the possibilities with these green tendrils are nearly endless. They are delicious when simply steamed, or pan-fried in butter. In this recipe, we bake them into a delicious cheesy tart, perfect for your spring brunch.

Fiddlehead-tart-slice

Gruyere Fiddlehead Tart Recipe

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Ingredients:

Pastry
1 cup flour
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into chunks
1 Tbsp white vinegar
2 tsp or more cold water

Filling
2 Tbsp butter
2 shallots, thinly sliced
1 cup fiddleheads, washed and trimmed
3 eggs
3/4 cup whole milk
1/2 cup grated Gruyere cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

full-Fiddlehead-tart-on-plate

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Grease a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom.
2. In a food processor mix flours, salt and sugar. Add in butter and pulse until butter is evenly dispersed into pea-size pieces. Add vinegar and pulse. Run the food processor as you add water a teaspoon at a time, through the spout on the top until dough comes together into a smooth ball.
3. On a floured surface, roll dough in a circle until about 12 inches in diameter and 1/4 inch thick.
4. Place rolled out dough into the tart pan and gently press into and up sides. Discard excess dough. Poke the surface of the dough with a fork. Place a piece of parchment over dough and place baking weights on top. Bake until edges of crust begin to turn golden, about 12 minutes.
5. Remove from oven and remove baking weights and parchment. Let cool. Reduce oven temperature to 400°F.
6. Heat butter on a non-stick pan over medium. Sweat shallots until translucent and fragrant.
7. In a medium pot, bring water to boil. Using a steamer basket, steam fiddleheads for 10 minutes until bright green and tender.
8. In a large bowl beat eggs with milk. Add in cheeses, fiddleheads, shallots, salt and pepper. Pour mixture into tart shell.
9. Bake until mixture is set and turning golden, about 25 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Apple Granola Bars

Apple Pie Granola Bars That Taste Just Like Fall

We’ve made apple pie healthier and snack-sized, but have still kept all the classic, cozy fall flavour you know and crave. These apple pie granola bars have all of the perks of the traditional slice, without any of the fuss of making pastry. Filled with dried apples, cinnamon, nuts and honey, they have serious comfort food appeal, but are wholesome enough for an on-the-go breakfast. If you’re feeling decadent, dip one side of these bars in melted butterscotch chips or serve a la mode.

AppleGranolaBars-8

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Chill Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Makes: 8 to 10 bars

AppleGranolaBars-1

Ingredients:
1⁄2 cup unsalted whole roasted almonds
1⁄2 cup unsalted roasted hazelnuts, chopped
1⁄2 cup unsalted roasted walnuts, chopped
1/3 cup rolled oats, toasted
1⁄4 cup honey
2 Tbsp almond butter
1⁄2 tsp vanilla extract
1⁄2 tsp cinnamon
1⁄2 tsp salt
1⁄2 cup dried apple rings, diced
1/3 cup butterscotch chips or salted caramel chips, melted (optional)

Directions:
1. Line an 8-inch baking pan with parchment paper, leaving overhang.
2. In a medium bowl, mix to combine almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts and oats. Set aside.

AppleGranolaBars-3

3. In a small saucepan, combine honey, almond butter, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. While continuously whisking over low heat, warm mixture until it starts to gently bubble. Remove from heat and pour mixture into nut mixture.

AppleGranolaBars-4

4. Using a spatula fold in diced dried apples and mix until everything is thoroughly combined. Transfer into lined pan and tightly pack the mixture with the back of the spatula. Make sure there are no gaps.
5. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to firm up.

AppleGranolaBars-5

6. Using parchment overhang, lift granola bar mixture from baking pan onto a cutting board. Cut the chilled granola bar mixture into 8 to 10 bars or squares. If desired, dip one side of the chilled bars into the melted butterscotch chips or salted caramel chips and place on parchment until set. Serve.

AppleGranolaBars-13

Enjoy more bountiful fall apple desserts with this mouthwatering list of perennial favourites.

Pesto

5 Pesto Recipes to Preserve That Garden-Fresh Flavour

It’s the end of summer, and gardens around the country are overflowing with beautiful, aromatic herbs. While this bountiful news is very welcome for flavour-craving home cooks, it can also be a little daunting. One can only garnish so many pizzas with fresh basil, and there’s a limit to the amount of tacos one can top with cilantro. But don’t let those gorgeous greens go to waste; instead, make pesto.

From classic basil-pine nut to a more modern kale-walnut creation, there are countless pesto possibilities and combinations to inspire new dishes and brighten up old favourites.

5-pestos-summer

Classic Basil Pesto
In a food processor, blend 2 cups packed fresh basil, 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, 1/3 cup toasted pine nuts, 2 minced garlic cloves, 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil and salt, to taste. Continue to blend until a thick, green paste forms.

 Parsley and Pistachio Pesto
In a food processor, blend 1 1/2 cups packed fresh parsley leaves, 1/2 cup chopped fresh chives, 1/3 cup pistachios, 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese, 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil and salt, to taste. Continue to blend until a thick, green paste forms.

Cilantro, Mint and Pumpkin Seed Pesto
In a food processor, blend 1 cup packed fresh cilantro (including tender stems), 1 cup packed fresh mint leaves, 1/2 cup toasted unsalted pumpkin seeds, 1/3 sliced green onion, the zest and juice of 1 lime, 1 tsp ground cumin, 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil and salt, to taste. Continue to blend until a thick, green paste forms.

Arugula and Almond Pesto
In a food processor, blend 2 cups packed baby arugula, 1/2 cup toasted almonds, zest and juice of 1 lemon, 1 minced garlic clove, 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil and salt, to taste. Continue to blend until a thick, green paste forms.

kale-pesto

Kale and Walnut Pesto
In a food processor, blend 11/2 cups packed green kale leaves including ribs, tough ends discarded, 1/2 cup packed fresh parsley leaves, 1/2 cup Asiago cheese, 1/3 cup toasted walnuts, 1 minced garlic clove, 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil and salt, to taste. Continue to blend until a thick, green paste forms.

How To Store Pesto
Store pesto airtight in the refrigerator with a thin layer of olive oil over top to avoid oxidation and preserve that vibrant green colour. Or, spoon into an ice cube tray and freeze; pop out pesto “ice cubes” and store in a zip-top bag for portioned use throughout the fall and winter.

How To Enjoy Your Resh Pesto
– Mix pesto with your favourite vinegar to create an herbaceous salad dressing
– Mix pesto with mayonnaise to create a herby dipping sauce for kebabs, vegetables and chips
– Spread pesto onto sandwiches, burger buns or avocado toast
– Dress warm or cold pasta with pesto for a vibrant pasta dinner or lunchtime pasta salad
– Add a pop of freshness to soups and stews with a dollop of pesto on top
– Mix pesto with cream cheese for a fresh bagel topper
– Mix pesto into quiches, frittatas or spoon into omelettes

While you have the food processor out, try your hand at a few more pesto variations.

Fruit Bruschetta

Fresh, Fruity Bruschetta to Sweeten Your Summer

Bruschetta is a crunchy Italian appetizer that celebrates summertime tomatoes, fresh basil, garlic and olive oil, all of which is spooned over crispy, toasted bread. With all of that goodness packed into one bite, it’s no wonder it’s so popular!

While tomatoes are lovely, the concept of bruschetta is open to interpretation. Instead of the standard tomatoes, we put some of summer’s best stone fruit in the spotlight, creating three scrumptious, tomato-free bruschetta using peaches, cherries and apricots. Enjoy one, two or all three of these sweet-meets-savoury creations for a bright, stunningly beautiful alternative to typical tomatoes.

peach-bruschetta

Peach and Radish Bruschetta
Thinly slice 2 ripe peaches and place in a medium bowl with 2 thinly sliced radishes, 1 Tbsp thinly sliced green onion and 2 Tbsp fresh cilantro leaves. Toss in 1 Tbsp olive oil and 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Mix and let peach mixture stand for 10 minutes. Garnish toasted crostini with peach mixture and serve immediately. Makes 8 to 10.

cherry-bruschetta

Cherry and Chive Bruschetta
Pit and slice 2 cups cherries and place in a medium bowl with 1/4 cup minced fresh chives, 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar and 1 Tbsp olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Mix and let cherry mixture stand for 10 minutes. Smear extra-smooth ricotta on toasted crostini and top with cherry mixture, spooning over residual cherry juices. Serve immediately. Makes 8 to 10.

Apricot-Basil

Apricot and Basil Bruschetta
Slice 2 cups ripe apricots and place in a medium bowl with 1/4 cup sliced red onion and 1/4 cup finely chopped basil. In a small bowl whisk 1 Tbsp white wine vinegar with 2 Tbsp apricot jam and microwave for 30 seconds. Toss apricot mixture with jam mixture and let stand for 10 minutes. Top toasted crostini with apricot mixture and garnish with crumbled feta. Serve immediately. Makes 8 to 10.

Don’t get us wrong, we still love tomatoes! Here are our finest fresh tomato recipes for summertime and beyond.