Tag Archives: cheese

Easy, Cheesy Cherry-Pistachio Brie En Croute

Want to be a holiday party hero? Make this recipe that’s quick, easy and delivers huge in the yummy department. Impress your guests with beautifully decorated puff pastry, then shock them when you cut through and soft, gooey cheese oozes out. Finally, send them to heaven with this sweet and salty combination of tart cherry preserves, crunchy pistachios and rich double cream Brie.

cherry-pistachio-brie-en-croute2

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 25 minutes
Serves: 8

Ingredients:
1 10-inch x 10-inch sheet puff pastry
1 200 g wheel double cream Brie
1/2 sour cherry preserves (or jam/jelly of your choice)
1/2 cup chopped pistachios (nut of your choice)
1 egg yolk

cherry-pistachio-brie-en-croute

Directions:
1. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Roll out puff pastry on a floured surface. Place Brie in centre of pastry. Place preserves on brie and then place nuts over preserves. Bring the corners of the pastry into the centre of the Brie, then bring the side up to meet the corners. Trim excess pastry from the centre. Form decorative detailing with excess pastry to help seal the pastry. Chill in freezer for 30 minutes.
2. While chilling, preheat oven to 400°F.
3. Mix egg yolk with 1 Tbsp water and brush over pastry. Bake in centre of oven until pastry is golden, about 30 minutes.
4. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before serving. Do not bake in advance.

Looking for more tasty hor d’ouvre inspiration? Try our 75 Holiday Party Appetizers Your Guests Will Love.

Insanely Delicious Bacon Grilled Kimcheese Sandwich

There’s no way around it; grilled cheese sandwiches are ooey, gooey comfort food at its finest. While there are lots of mouthwatering  additions to a grilled cheese — apple, bacon, smoked meat — kimchi adds a zesty cabbage crunch.

This version marries the Canadian comfort classic of melted aged cheddar cheese and crispy bacon with tangy, spicy Korean kimchi.

Serve it with homemade spicy ketchup for the ultimate flavour bomb.kimchi-grilled-cheese-kimcheese

Bacon Grilled Kimcheese Sandwich

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients:
4 strips of bacon
8 slices white sourdough bread
2 1/2 cups aged Canadian cheddar cheese, grated
1 cup store-bought kimchi, drained with juices reserved
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion
1/2 cup ketchup

Directions:

1. Heat a large pan to medium and fry bacon until crispy, about 5 minutes. Remove bacon from pan and set aside on a paper towel. Remove pan from heat and reserve 1 Tbsp of bacon fat in a small bowl. Leave remaining bacon fat in pan for later use.

2. Divide cheese among four slices of bread. Cut each bacon strip in half and place on top of cheese. Divide kimchi among sandwiches and sprinkle each with 1 Tbsp of sliced green onion. Top each sandwich with remaining bread slices.

3. Reheat pan with bacon fat to medium. Place 2 sandwiches in pan and fry one side until golden, crispy and cheese has begun to melt, about 4 minutes. Flip each sandwich and fry the opposite side until golden and cheese has completely melted, another 4 minutes. Remove sandwiches from pan and set aside. Add reserved bacon fat back to pan. Repeat with the two remaining sandwiches.

4. Mix 2 Tbsp of reserved kimchi juice with ketchup. Serve with grilled cheese.

Looking for more deliciously cheesy snacks? Try our Garlic Fingers with Donair Sauce.

hawaiian pizza on a cooling rack

The History of Hawaiian Pizza

Despite its tropical name, Hawaiian pizza is actually a Canadian creation. The pineapple-laden pie is the brainchild of retired cook, Sam Panopoulos, who first served pineapple on pizza at Satellite Restaurant in Chatham, Ont.

Hawaiian Pizza

By the mid 60s, Satellite Restaurant (now under different ownership) had been serving pizza for a few years, although Panopoulos, now 82,  says the dish was still a novelty for Canadians, who at the time topped their pies conservatively.

“People only put on mushroom, bacon and pepperoni, that’s all,” says Panopoulos. “I had pineapple in the restaurant and I put some on, and I shared with some customers and they liked it. And we started serving it that way. For a long time, we were the only ones serving it.”

As we know it today, Hawaiian pizza is a classic American-style cheese pizza topped with ham and pineapple. Variations may include bacon in place of or in addition to the ham, but Panopoulos says that his major contribution was simply adding the pineapple.

“You could have only pineapple, you could have bacon and pineapple, you could have mushrooms and pineapple, anything. Just like today, you could have a choice,” he says.

Panopoulos enjoyed a certain amount of media attention over the last few years, but the pizza claim overshadows what may actually be Panopoulos’ most enduring legacy: a passion for introducing diverse flavours to Canadian diners.

In the early 60s, says Panopoulos, pizza was considered ethnic food, an Italian-American curiosity that adventurous Canadians would try when they crossed the border. Back then, Panopoulos would drive to Detroit for a taste of the cheese-topped pie.“[Then] we bought a little oven and learned how to make pizza,” he says.

Panopoulos didn’t stop with pizza. Over the years, the Satellite Restaurant introduced a variety of novel flavours to Chatham residents, like Chinese food prepared by a Chinese cook, and dishes from Panopoulos’ native Greece.

“Today you can go to a Chinese place and have a chicken salad, Thai place they give you something else. But in those days there was no way you could mix flavours,” says Panopoulos. “When you told someone to try pineapple on their pizza they looked at you like, ‘Are you crazy?’

Say what you will about Hawaiian pizza, a polarizing dish that seems to attract as many fans as detractors. But it’s this spirit, exemplified by Sam Panopoulos and other culinary innovators, that has expanded Canadian cuisine beyond maple syrup and bacon, to represent the cultural diversity that makes this country — and its cuisine — great.

Garlic Fingers with Donair Sauce

As every East Coaster knows, garlic fingers are a must when it’s late at night and you’re looking for a snack. But if you’re not in the Maritimes, you can rely on this quick and easy recipe to satisfy your cravings.

What makes this cheesy snack complete is the dipping sauce. If you’ve ever enjoyed a donair, you’ve licked this addictively sweet sauce off your fingers and maybe even your shirt. Creamy, thick and tangy, donair sauce is the real deal and a must-have with garlic fingers.

Garlic Fingers with Donair Sauce

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Makes: 2 to 4 servings

Ingredients

Donair Sauce
2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/2 tsp garlic powder

Garlic Fingers
1 500g pkg pizza dough
1 Tbsp garlic butter, melted
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Garlic Fingers

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
2. Combine sweetened condensed milk with vinegar and garlic powder. Set aside.
3. Dust a 15-inch pizza pan with cornmeal. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Roll dough into a 14-inch circle. Transfer to pan. Brush garlic butter evenly over dough. Sprinkle with cheese.
4. Bake until cheese and crust are golden brown, about 15 minutes. To serve, cut pie in half, then rotate 90 degrees and cut pie into 2-inch strips. Serve with donair sauce.

Looking for more tasty snacks? Try our Poutine Pizza.

Le Roy Jucep Poutine

The History of Poutine: One Hot Mess

When it comes to poutine, three things are certain: it was invented in Québec, it’s best made with fresh cheese curds and it’s undeniably delicious. What’s less clear is who first made it, and when.

The very history of this palate-pleasing, artery-clogging French Canadian masterpiece is a hot mess, peppered with colourful characters and laced with a distracting array of secret sauces and gooey melted cheese curds.

Jucep Poutine

Two Québec restaurants in the region south of Trois-Rivieres claim to be first to serve up the now-iconic dish. Café Ideal, later re-named Le Lutin Qui Rit (The Laughing Elf), has the earliest claim. Story has it, the Warwick, Qué. café was serving poutine — or something quite like it — as early as 1957. But detractors suggest that even if Café Ideal served it first, their piping hot bag of fries and fresh cheese curds was missing a key ingredient — the gravy, known in Québec as ‘sauce brune.’

The more widely accepted claim to serving all three key ingredients together comes from Drummondville’s Le Roy Jucep, once owned by the late Jean-Paul Roy. Le Roy Jucep holds the trademark as “l’inventeur de la poutine” but just like their menu, which offers 23 options for cheesy, sauce-smothered fries, their origin story comes in several flavours. Some say it was an out-of-town customer who first asked his waitress to toss fresh cheese curds — widely available in the dairy-rich region — onto his plate of fries and gravy. Others claim the culinary ménage a trois was a frequent off-menu request from the diner’s regulars – so frequent that Roy decided to make it an official menu option around 1965 or 1967.

Le Roy Juce

Le Roy Juce, is one of a few restaurants claiming to be the birthplace of poutine.

“Whoever’s the first human to put cheese, gravy and fries on a plate, we’ll never know for sure,” says Charles Lambert, Le Roy Jucep’s third owner and current protector of the diner’s secret sauce recipe. “[But] the first restaurant to write the letters P-O-U-T-I-N-E on a menu is for sure Le Roy Jucep. And that represented fries, cheese curds and gravy.”

According to Lambert, in the mid-60’s wait staff grew tired of writing “fries, cheese curds and gravy” each time a customer ordered the increasingly popular dish, and decided it needed a name. Lambert has a few ideas for how the now famous moniker came to be. “Poutine” was regional slang for “pudding,” and another way of saying “mix” or “mess” — both appropriate adjectives. Moreover, one of Le Roy Jucep’s cooks went by the nickname “Ti-Pout,” so “poutine” was a name that honoured both the dish and its maker.

Café Ideal’s name story is a similar, albeit saltier tale. Popular history has it that when Eddy Lanaisse, reportedly the first customer to ask for cheese curds with his fries, made his request, owner Fernand Lachance exclaimed, “Ça va te faire une maudite poutine!” or “That will make a damned mess!”

On that point, at least, we have accord: poutine is a mess, but damned if it isn’t delicious.

Can’t get enough poutine? Try these delicious 9 Fun Facts About Poutine.

Chicken, Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni

This creamy chicken, spinach and ricotta-filled pasta is packed with a flavourful tomato sauce and walnut pieces for some crunch. With its cheesy, crisp crust on top and moist and tender interior,  you can’t go wrong with this satisfying baked pasta dish.

888_chicken-spinach-cannelloni2

Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Serves: 6

Ingredients:
28 oven-ready cannelloni shells
1 pound ground chicken
1 ½ cups ricotta cheese
6 cups fresh spinach
1 small onion, finely diced
2 large cloves garlic
3 Tbsp olive oil
pinch nutmeg
¾ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
1 cup grated 4-cheese blend, divided
½ cup walnut pieces

For the Cream Sauce:
2 cups whole milk
1 cup cream
3 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp flour
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
Pinch nutmeg
¾ cups grated Asiago cheese

888_chicken-spinach-cannelloni

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large skillet, brown the ground chicken until cooked through and drain any water or extra fat. Add browned meat to a large mixing bowl and set aside.
2. In the same skillet, heat olive oil on medium high and sauté onion until golden brown. Add garlic to skillet and sauté for 1 minute. Add spinach and cook until wilted. Season with the salt and pepper and a pinch of nutmeg.
3. Add onions, garlic and spinach to bowl and allow to cool slightly before mixing ricotta through to incorporate. Mix in walnut pieces.
4. Make cream sauce by melting butter over medium-low heat in a saucepan. Take off the heat and whisk in flour. Heat milk and cream in a separate saucepan or in the microwave, and slowly whisk into butter and flour mixture. Raise heat to medium-high and bring to a light boil, whisking occasionally. Incorporate salt, pepper and Asiago cheese, and set aside.
5. Pour ⅓ of the sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 9” casserole or oven-proof dish.
6. Stuff half the cannelloni shells using an icing bag or a spoon and place in 2 rows on the bottom of the casserole. Cover with ½ of remaining sauce and ½ of 4-cheese blend. Repeat with the rest of the cannelloni, sauce and 4-cheese blend.
7. Cover with tin foil and place on a pan to catch any possible drips. Bake for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 15 minutes, until cheese is golden brown and bubbling.
8. Let cannelloni cool for about 15 minutes before cutting into 6 sections and serving.

11 Ways with Eggs, Ham and Cheese

Egg-cellent things happen when you make breakfast for dinner, so throw the meal plan a curveball and whip up one of these delicious egg, ham and cheese recipes for dinner tonight!

888_eggs-ham-and-cheese

1. Easy Veggie and Ham Supper Recipe

2. A Wicked Broken Egg Recipe

3. 6-Minute Egg on Creamy Polenta with Crispy Serrano Ham Recipe

4. Ham Hock, Cheese and Egg Pie Recipe

5. Ham and Egg Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipe

6. Green Eggs and Ham Recipe

7. Nests with Ham, Eggs and Swiss Cheese Recipe

8. Phyllo Egg Cups with Ham and Cheese Recipe

9. Crepes Stuffed with Eggs, Cheddar, Ham and Vegetables Recipe

10. The Big Egg Monte Cristo Recipe

11. Ham Strata with Greek Salad Recipe

8 Must-Try Poutineries From Coast to Coast

A Canadian classic, poutine is always at the top of our comfort food list. And although there are tons of casual chains offering up plates of cheesy, gravy-soaked fries, here are 8 eateries that add a bit more pizzazz to this iconic dish.

Below Deck Tavern (Calgary, AB) – Good Ol’ Fashioned Poutine
For East Coasters looking for a little taste of home in Western Canada, this is the spot to be. Revel in deliciousness with dishes such as deep-fried pepperoni and cottage pie. But for something a little extra special, opt for Below Deck’s spin on a poutine. They season skinny fries with old bay seasoning and top with the regular curds and gravy. Add on some donair meat while you’re at it.

kiwianne_Caplanskys_Poutine

Caplansky’s (Toronto, ON) – Smoked Meat Poutine
Food Network Canada personality, Zane Caplansky, has built a big brand for himself in Toronto creating a successful delicatessen-style business. Try his version of the poutine, chock full of quality, kosher smoked meat.

yelp_Resto-La-Banquise

La Banquise 24th (Montreal, QC) – Hot Dog Poutine
Open 24 hours for all your post-bar, drunken food cravings, this popular spot for poutine in the heart of poutine land — Montreal — serves up more variations on this theme than you can imagine. Naturally, after a hard night out, you’re not always thinking, so skip the brain work and just go for the hot dog option. I mean, who’s counting calories at 3 am?

La Pataterie Hulloise (Gatineau, QC)
Most Ottawans will tell you that if you’re really interested in finding a great poutine, then you need to take a short drive over the river from Ottawa to Gatineau. This no frills spot keeps their offerings simple because sometimes, you just don’t need to mess with a good thing.

Peasant Cookery (Winnipeg, MB)
There’s something nice and homey about this restaurant in the exchange district of downtown Winnipeg. The menu is all about good ol’ home cooked food, but taken up a notch. Crispy fries are topped with curds from a local producer, Bothwell Cheese and a bacon gravy. We’ll order two please.

The-Reef---Jerk-Chicken-Poutine

The Reef (Vancouver, BC) – Jerk Chicken Poutine
I guarantee that you’ve never had Caribbean jerk in this application before. Sure, the cheese curds and fries are pretty average, but the pulled chicken in this dish is great and the gravy is sweet and spicy with hints of cinnamon. Out of every dish on this list, this bastardization (if you will) of poutine is one of the most interesting.

Schryers-Smoked-BBQ-Shack_fb-smoked-mozza-poutine

Schryer’s Smoked BBQ Shack (Saskatoon, SK) – Smoked Mozza Poutine
I’m still a little shocked there’s not a poutine-inspired perogy dish in my hometown (maybe there is and I’m just out of the loop) and even more shocked that a good poutine is still hard to come by in Saskatoon, but thankfully this top notch barbecue joint is saving the day. If you’ve never had smoked mozzarella, you haven’t lived. Add this gooey delicacy into a poutine equation and you’ve got something really worth forking into.

Willy’s Fresh Cut (Halifax, NS)
Like I mentioned earlier with Below Deck Tavern, donair meat in a poutine is an East Coast favourite and Willy’s can definitely verify that fact. If donair meat isn’t your cup of tea, try Willy’s stuffing poutine, or one with a big helping of pulled pork on top.

Dan-Clapson-Avatar Dan Clapson is a food writer and culinary instructor based out of Calgary. He is constantly creating new recipes and striving to expand his culinary horizons. He thinks yam fries are overrated.

Creamy Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese

A giant pot of gooey, stovetop mac and cheese is exactly what we need to get us through the final days winter. With just six simple ingredients, chances are you may already have everything on hand to make this this hearty meal. So go ahead and indulge in this creamy, dreamy dish.

Mac n Cheese recipe

And since everything tastes exponentially better with bacon, I’ve added a generous dose of the salty pork along with some chopped jalapeños for a variation you can’t resist.

Extra cheese mac n cheese recipe

Stovetop Macaron and Cheese

Ingredients:
4 Tbsp butter
4 Tbsp cornstarch
2 cups milk
1/2 Gruyere, grated
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups macaroni noodles or elbow noodles

Directions:
1. Cook noodles to al dente according to package directions.
2. In a medium saucepan, melt butter. Add cornstarch and stir with a wooden spoon until you have a lump-free paste. Continue to stir for 1-2 minutes. This will help cook out that raw cornstarch taste.
3. Slowly add milk while whisking constantly. Simmer until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Add Gruyere and stir until melted.
4. Add drained cooked noodles to cheese mixture. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Bacon Mac N Cheese recipe 1

Bacon Jalapeño Mac and Cheese

Ingredients:
4 butter
4 Tbsp cornstarch
2 cups milk
1/2 Gruyere, grated
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups macaroni noodles or elbow noodles
5 to 6 strips of thick-cut bacon, chopped
2 jalapenos, sliced or chopped

Directions:
1. Cook noodles to al dente according to package directions.
2. Cook bacon until desired tenderness. Drain on paper towels and set aside.
3. In a medium saucepan, melt butter. Add cornstarch and stir with a wooden spoon until you have a lump-free paste. Continue to stir for a minute or two. This will help cook out that raw cornstarch taste.
4. Slowly add milk while whisking constantly. Simmer until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Add gruyere and stir until melted.
5. Add drained cooked noodles to cheese mixture.
6. Stir in bacon and chopped jalapeno. Add salt and pepper to taste.

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

Creamy Homemade Polenta, 2 Ways

Polenta, grits, cornmeal – whatever you choose to call it, there’s a severely underused ingredient lurking in your pantry that’s kicking back, patiently waiting to be infused with just about anything you dare to throw at it. And once you discover it, there will be no more putting that polenta baby in the corner.

This stovetop cheesy polenta with smoky bacon and shrimp is exactly the kind of deceivingly easy meal you pull out for company, acting like it didn’t come together with any more effort than a few strong-armed stirs of the pot and some well-timed fry action.

The good news is that this dish is just as good meatless: Try it topped with sauteed tomatoes, spinach and a fried egg. Because, let’s face it, a fried egg makes everything better.

Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins
Serves: 4

888_Grits_Shrimp_polenta

Ingredients:

For the polenta:
4 cups water
1 cup polenta
2 Tbsp butter
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Salt

For the shrimp:
12 raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
6 slices bacon, chopped
2 Tbsp parsley, chopped
2 green onions, sliced
1 large clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp lemon juice

For the spinach and tomato sauté:
2 cups, spinach
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 glove garlic, minced
Olive oil
4 fried eggs
Kosher salt, cracked black pepper
Tobasco sauce

888_Grits_Polenta_Tomatoes

Directions:

For the polenta and shrimp:
1. Bring water to a boil and add salt. Slowly whisk in polenta and cook, stirring frequently for 20 minutes, adding more water if it looks too thick. Remove from heat and stir in butter and cheese.
2. In a large skillet, fry the bacon until browned. Set on paper towel to drain. Cook shrimp in bacon grease until they turn pink, about 3-4 minutes. Add garlic, green onions, parsley and cooked bacon, and sprinkle with lemon juice. Sauté for 3 minutes.
3. Ladle polenta into individual bowls and top with shrimp and bacon mixture. Serve immediately.

For the spinach and tomato sauté:
1. Heat olive oil a large skillet and add tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt and cook until they begin to release their juices, about 3 minutes.
2. Add minced garlic and spinach. Stir and cover, letting the mixture simmer until spinach is wilted, about 3-5 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, fry eggs in screaming hot olive oil until preferred doneness. Set aside.
4. Ladle polenta into individual bowls and top with spinach and tomato mixture. Add fried egg and hot sauce, 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

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.

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.

Pesto Pizza with Mushrooms and Smoked Gouda

Delicious fresh pesto, juicy mushrooms, savoury red onion, finished off with the smokey flavour of creamy smoked gouda. A pizza that not only looks great, but tastes awesome too!

pesto-vegetarian-gouda-and-mushroom-pizza-recipe

Pesto Pizza with Red Onions, Mushrooms and Smoked Gouda

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 20 mins
Serves: 3

Ingredients:

No-Knead Pizza Dough:
250g all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
? teaspoon active dry yeast
180ml water

Pizza Toppings:

Pesto
Mushrooms
Red onion
Smoked gouda cheese

Directions:

1. In a bowl, combine dry ingredients, slowly mix in water while stirring with a wooden spoon.
2. Once dough begins to form, work it into a roughly shaped ball with your hands, leaving it in the bowl, and covering with plastic wrap.
3. Allow dough to rise at room temperature for around 18 hours or until doubled inside.
4. After 18 hours, remove dough from bowl and place on a floured work surface.
5. Cut the dough into three even pieces for personal sized pizzas.
6. Knead each piece of dough into a ball and allow to rise for another hour covered with a damp towel, or wrapped in plastic wrap. If you won’t be using all the dough right away, refrigerate it, and remove it from the fridge 1 to 2 hours before cooking allowing it to warm to room temperature.
7. While dough is resting, if using a pizza stone, place it in the cold oven and turn the heat to 500F (or as close to that heat as possible), allowing the oven to heat for about an hour.
8. If you don’t have a pizza stone, arrange the pizza dough on a baking sheet, and just preheat the oven to 500 to 550F.
9. Once the dough has finished resting, on a floured surface, stretch it thinly to your preference (without breaking the dough).
10. Spread pesto on the dough, top with sliced mushrooms, red onions, and slices or shredded smoked gouda.
11. If using a baking sheet, bake at 500 to 550°F, or if using a pizza stone turn your oven to broil, and cook the pizza for 5 to 10 minutes until desired doneness.

100x100_BS Carlene and Bob Deutscher are the dynamic sibling duo behind BS’ in the Kitchen. While Carlene leans towards the sweeter side of things, baking up delicious desserts, you can count on Bob to cook up something savoury! Aside from blogging on BS’ in the Kitchen, Carlene works in marketing & communications, and sidelines as a lifestyle & wedding photographer, while Bob operates his own media company, with a focus on food photography, and videography!

Carlene and Bob Deutscher are part of the Lifestyle Blog Network family.

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Sweet Eats: Gluten-Free Cornbread with Bacon & Cheese

With the days getting chillier, nothing battles the nip in the air better than warm and cozy, stick-to-your ribs food. When it starts to get cold outside, comfort food is where it’s at – and this recipe for bacon, cheddar and green onion cornbread fits the bill.

Make a batch and serve it warm with something equally as comforting like chili. Or eat it on its own, slathered in butter as an afternoon snack. However you decide to enjoy it, it will certainly help ease the certainty that cold weather is on the way!

cornbread-1

Ingredients:

1 cup cornmeal
¾ cup corn flour
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup butter, melted
2 large eggs
1 ½ cups milk
10 slices pancetta or 5 slices bacon, diced and cooked until crispy
2 green onions, finely sliced
1 cup packed grated cheddar cheese

cornbread-2

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Butter an 8” baking dish. In a large bowl combine the cornmeal, corn flour, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt. In a separate bowl whisk together the butter, eggs and milk. Combine wet ingredients into dry and mix until just combined. Fold in the cooked pancetta or bacon, green onions and cheddar cheese.
  2. Scrape mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Slice into squares.

cornbread-3

SONY DSC Miranda Keyes is a freelance food stylist, recipe developer and writer who used to live in London, UK but moved back to Canada for nanaimo bars, maple syrup and poutine. To learn more about her, follow her on Instagram littlemirandapiggy and Twitter @mirandaak.

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