Bonnie Stern Food News
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Contents

Bonnie's Book Club

Corporate Services

News and Events

Restaurant Recommendations

Bonnie's Cookbooks

Featured Recipes

Contact

Bonnie Stern

Phone: 416 484 4810

Email:
bonnie@bonniestern.com

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Website:
www.bonniestern.com

About Bonnie

When Bonnie Stern started her cooking school in 1973 she wanted people to have more fun in the kitchen, eat more healthfully and nourish their families and friends with delicious food. That goal has never changed. Bonnie is still sharing her love of cooking in everything she does.

Bonnie is an award winning author of twelve best-selling cookbooks and writes weekly in the National Post. She offers a wide variety of corporate services, cooking classes and unique book clubs where authors actually attend and dinner is included. Bonnie is the recipient of the 2007 Premier’s Award.

 

September 2017

Last month I told you everything (or almost everything) about my wonderful trip to Newfoundland - where I ate and slept, where I saw whales and icebergs and everything in between. Thanks to all of you who emailed me about your Newfoundland experiences! I loved hearing from you and that you had a great time there too.

Enjoy what’s left of the warm days and cool evenings. Keep cooking summer recipes to keep your summer alive.

I am looking forward to delicious and interesting book clubs this fall (see the Bonnie Book Club section below) and I am excited to be participating in some special events (scroll down to News and Events). Our challah workshops are starting again and the itinerary for our culinary tour to Israel is finally available with a link below also in our News and Events section.

Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year begins the evening of September 20. But I always think September feels like a new year in so many ways. So Happy New Year to those celebrating Rosh Hashanah and good wishes to everyone for the start of a new season. With all the heavy world news lately take the occasion of a new beginning to promote kindness and compassion.

Delicious Wishes
Bonnie

(For my Rosh Hashanah recipes check my column on Thursdays in the National Post.)

 

 

 

Bonnie's Book Club
Bonnie's Book Club is a labour of love. Nothing pleases Bonnie more than to have the opportunity to bring readers and writers together in a truly unique way that offers the rare opportunity to meet some of the country's leading authors, discuss their work and enjoy a delicious meal inspired by the book.

Drawing on her degree in English and her passion for food and cooking, Bonnie Stern invites you to a literary feast you won't soon forget - Oprah's book club never tasted this good!

Small print: All registrations must be paid in full when registering. Please check your schedule carefully before registering. Cancellations can be accepted only up to 14 days before event date, a $50 charge (plus HST) applies to cover the administration fee and cost of the book. At any time you may send someone in your place for no additional charge. It is the attendee’s responsibility to mark their calendar with the date, time and location of the event.

SEPTEMBER

CAROL OFF: ALL WE LEAVE BEHIND
CAROL OFF: ALL WE LEAVE BEHINDAs the host of CBC Radio’s top rated flagship program As It Happens, Carol Off is a voice and personality that Canadians turn to every evening. Over the course of her incredible career, she has also reached a level of journalistic excellence that has been equaled by very few. Carol has covered conflicts in the Middle East, Haiti, the Balkans and the sub-continent, as well as events in the former Soviet Union, Europe, Asia, the United States and Canada. She reported the fallout from the 9/11 disasters with news features and documentaries from New York, Washington, London, Cairo and Afghanistan and has won numerous awards for her CBC television documentaries in Asia, Africa and Europe.

In September, Carol will visit the Book Club to discuss her eagerly-awaited new book that finds her at the centre of remarkable events. All We leave Behind: A Reporter’s Journey into the Lives of Others tells the gripping story of a family’s desperate attempts to escape Afghan warlords, Taliban oppression and the persecutions of refugee life.

In 2002, Carol Off and a CBC TV crew encountered an Afghan man with a story to tell. Asad Aryubwal became a key figure in their documentary on the terrible power of thuggish warlords who were working arm in arm with Americans and NATO troops. When Asad publicly exposed the deeds of one of the warlords, General Abdul Rashid Dostum, it set off a chain of events from which there was no turning back. Asad, his wife, Mobina, and their five children had to flee their home.

The family faced an uncertain future. But their dilemma compelled a journalist to cross the lines of disinterested reporting and become deeply involved. Together, they navigated the Byzantine international bureaucracy and the decidedly unwelcoming policies of Stephen Harper's government until the family finally found a new home.

Carol Off's powerful account traces not only one family's journey and fraught attempts to immigrate to a safe place, it also illustrates what happens when a journalist becomes irrevocably caught up in the lives of the people in her story and finds herself unable to leave them behind.

Note: We are very excited that the Syrian refugee women from The Newcomer Kitchen will be cooking our dinner at District Oven on College Street.
Date: Monday September 18, 2017 (Wait list only)
Time: 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Location: District Oven
842 College Street, Toronto
Fee: 165 + HST (includes dinner, beverages, gratuity and a copy of All We leave Behind sent out as soon as possible)
Advance registration only: Bonnie Stern 416 484 4810


OCTOBER

ALAN DOYLE: A NEWFOUNDLANDER IN CANADA
ALAN DOYLE: A NEWFOUNDLANDER IN CANADAIn October, Bonnie is thrilled to welcome one of Canada’s most beloved talents to the Book Club as singer/songwriter/producer/actor/writer Alan Doyle launches his new memoir A Newfoundlander in Canada.

As a founding member of Great Big Sea, Alan Doyle is widely recognized as one of contemporary music’s most gifted singer/songwriter. For over twenty years, Great Big Sea has taken its unique blend of rock, folk and Celtic music from the shores of Newfoundland to the far corners of the world. During that time, the band has amassed a string of gold and platinum albums, while its high-energy live shows have earned legions of devoted fans across Canada and around the globe. In the last few years, Doyle has also launched a successful solo musical career, and has acted in such films as Robin Hood and Winter’s Tale, both co-starring Russell Crowe, and had a recurring role on the acclaimed television drama The Republic of Doyle.

“I am from Newfoundland,” says Alan Doyle. “Therefore, I am a bit of a storyteller. The stories of Newfoundlanders are often confused with fairy tales and the stuff of fiction; the people, places and events in them seem exaggerated or outright weird….[but] truth really is stranger than fiction.” In 2014, Doyle added “writer” to his incredible resume with the publication of his memoir, the national bestselling Where I Belong: From Small Town to Great Big Sea. a nostalgic and revealing look back at the great adventure that was his childhood.

In October Alan Doyle returns with A Newfoundlander in Canada, a hilarious, heartwarming account of leaving Newfoundland and discovering Canada for the first time.

Armed with the same personable, candid style found in his first book, Alan Doyle turns his perspective outward from Petty Harbour toward mainland Canada, reflecting on what it was like to venture away from the comforts of home and the familiarity of the island.

Heartfelt, funny and always insightful, these stories tap into the complexities of community and Canadianness, forming the portrait of a young man from a tiny fishing village trying to define and hold on to his sense of home while navigating a vast and diverse and wonder-filled country.

Date: Tuesday October 17, 2017 (Wait list only)
Time: 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Location: Big Crow
176 Dupont Street, Toronto
Fee: 165 + HST (includes dinner, beverages, gratuity and a copy of A Newfoundlander in Canada sent out as soon as possible)
Advance registration only: Bonnie Stern 416 484 4810


NOVEMBER

GURJINDER BASRAN: SOMEONE YOU LOVE IS GONE
GURJINDER BASRAN: SOMEONE YOU LOVE IS GONE

In November, Bonnie is very happy to present a rising star on the Canadian literary landscape as she welcomes award-winning writer Gurjinder Basran to the book club for an incredible evening of food and discussion that celebrates the extraordinary Someone You Love is Gone.

Simran is unable to move on. Grappling with the growing estrangement of her sister and daughter as well as the disintegration of her marriage, she wonders how her life has come to this. As the life she has carefully constructed unravels, she is forced to confront one of her most painful childhood memories - her parents sending her younger brother away from home.

Woven throughout are memories of Simran's mother as a young woman in 1960s India. Her world had seemed beautiful and full of hope then. But when an unexpected event occurs, the results will have repercussions for generations to come.

As the ghosts from the past clamour for attention, the only way to put them to rest may be for Simran to dig deeper into her family history and close the circle that was left open when her family was torn apart.

Lyrical and heartbreaking, Someone You Love is Gone is a mesmerizing tale of enduring love and family ties that defy time and space, weaving together the past and present, crossing continents and spanning generations.

Date: Monday November 6, 2017
Time: 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Location: Pukka
778 St. Clair Avenue West, Toronto
Fee: 165 + HST (includes dinner, beverages, gratuity and a copy of Someone You Love is Gone sent out as soon as possible)
Advance registration only: Bonnie Stern 416 484 4810



Book Club Locations
 
District Oven1
District Oven2
District Oven3
Syrian refugee women from The Newcomer Kitchen1
Syrian refugee women from The Newcomer Kitchen
Syrian refugee women from The Newcomer Kitchen2
District Oven4
District Oven x

District Oven

We are very excited that the Syrian refugee women from The Newcomer Kitchen will be cooking our dinner at District Oven on College Street. District Oven is a Mediterranean restaurant and fabulous event space.

842 College Street
Toronto
416 901 7717

www.districtoven.com

Big Crow2
Big Crow4
Big Crow1
Big Crow7
Big Crow x

Big Crow

We love the crazy deliciousness of Big Crow – Rose and Sons backyard bbq patio. It was so successful in the summer when it opened, they winterized it with walls, ceilings, heaters and blankets so it's now open all year.

176 Dupont Street
Toronto

(in the back of Rose and Sons)
647 748 3287

www.roseandsonsbigcrow.com

Pukka1
Pukka2
Pukka3
Pukka x

Pukka

Considered one of Toronto’s best Indian restaurant. It features modern Indian cooking and we love it. The environment is casual yet sophisticated and the service is friendly and knowledgeable.

778 St. Clair Avenue West
Toronto
416 342 1906

www.pukka.ca

Corporate Services

Corporate culinary events are a great way to host a corporate function. Great food always brings co-workers and staff together. People have fun, learn a lot and take home delicious memories.

Events are customized to meet your location, schedule, objectives and food preferences. Bonnie works with nutritionists, food producers, restaurants, etiquette experts and authors to create exciting programs.

All events will be planned and hosted by Bonnie personally.

Corporate Cooking Class
Private Cooking Class

Bonnie Stern has worked with various food manufacturers, grocery chains, restaurants, chefs, health professionals as well as cookware manufacturers, etc., offering a wide variety of corporate services, such as:

Corporate culinary events
Corporate family dinners
Market Tours
Recipe development
Private cooking classes
Product consultation
Menu consulting for parties
Fundraising events

For detailed information,
please call: 416 484 4810

Bonnie's Cookbooks
 
Friday Night Dinners (Paperback)

Friday Night Dinners

Bonnie's latest cookbook with her favourite menus, recipes, photos and stories. Over 170 delicious recipes for every occasion - holidays, barbecues, fast suppers and fabulous feasts - and Bonnie makes sure you can make fantastic meals and still enjoy the food and fun with everyone else. You'll want to use this book every day of the week.

Published by Random House of Canada, 2010, 320 pages, paperback

$29.95

Bonnie Stern's Essentials of Home Cooking
Bonnie Stern's
Essentials of Home Cooking

Winner of the 2004 International Association of Culinary Professionals Award. A beautiful cookbook filled with Bonnie’s personal favourites - dishes that reflect the way we are cooking today.

Published by Random House of Canada, 2003, 208 pages, paperback

$34.95
HeartSmart
HeartSmart
This wonderful compendium is a must for every kitchen featuring over 300 favourite recipes from the bestselling Simply HeartSmart Cooking, More HeartSmart Cooking and HeartSmart Cooking for Family and Friends, as well as 75 brand-new recipes to add to your HeartSmart repertoire. Many of the classic recipes have been fully updated to incorporate current food trends and new nutritional information.

Published by Random House of Canada, 2006, 480 pages, paperback.

$34.95
Cuisiner au goût du cœur
Cuisiner au gout du coeur
Published by Trecarre, 2006, 512 pages

$18.98 
Appetizers
Appetizers
A very special collection of over 150 mouth-watering recipes including soups, spreads, salads, hors d'oeuvre, pastas and much more. Complete with presentation, entertaining, menu planning tips and over 50 detailed illustrations.

Published by Random House of Canada, 1990, 176 pages, paperback

$22.95
Desserts
Desserts
Over 120 recipes for decadent cakes, pies and pastries, scrumptious cookies, creamy mousses and ice creams – A collection of recipes from a master that stand the test, and tastes, of time.

Also provided are elegant decorating tips, helpful information on equipment and ingredients, and black-and-white illustrations throughout demonstrating basic techniques that will make these recipes absolutely no-fail.

Published by Random House Canada, 1998, 214 pages, paperback

$21
HeartSmart Cooking for Family and Friends
HeartSmart Cooking
for Family and Friends
Featuring nine entertaining menus (over 200 recipes) with complete work plans, presentation ideas and wine suggestions, as well as complete nutritional analysis for each recipe, plus the Canadian Diabetes Association’s Food Choice Values. Colour photos and black and white instructional illustrations throughout.

Published by Random House of Canada, 2000, 320 pages, paperback

$28.95
News And Events
SHUK MACHANE YEHUDA COMES TO TORONTO
SHUK MACHANE YEHUDA COMES TO TORONTOSunday September 10, 2017

If you have never been to Machane Yehuda, the famous shuk (market) in Jerusalem, Sunday, September 10 is your chance to have a taste of it. It’s a fun event for a great cause – to raise awareness for Ezer Mizion’s Jewish Bone Marrow Donor Registry – the largest in the world.

For more information click Shuk Machane Yehuda

UJA BRUNCH WITH LEAH KOENIG & BONNIE STERN
BEYOND THE BAGEL:<BR />BRUNCH WITH LEAH KOENIG & BONNIE STERNSunday September 17, 2017

Bonnie is excited to be onstage with cookbook author Leah Koenig – Beyond the Bagel - talking about modern Jewish food. Come for brunch, a fun and lively discussion about modern Jewish food and music by Sandcatchers.

For more information click Beyond the Bagel

FOGO ISLAND HARVEST SERIES
FOGO ISLAND HARVEST SERIESSeptember 29 - November 5, 2017

Fogo Island, Newfoundland, (where I spent a wonderful few days this summer), is celebrating their partridgeberry season with a talented line-up of chefs and events.

For more information click Island Harvest Series

SPICE UP YOUR LIFE WITH BONNIE STERN
SPICE UP YOUR LIFE WITH BONNIE STERNSunday October 15, 2017
(Hamilton, ON)

Join Bonnie at Beth Jacob Synagogue in Hamilton for a delicious cooking demonstration featuring Israeli inspired dishes. There will be door prizes and tastings. Bring your friends and family to what promises to be a fabulous afternoon (time to be announced)! Tickets $35.

For more information contact Hanna Schayer
905 522 1351 ext 10
hanna@bethjacobsynagogue.ca

RESTAURANTS FOR CHANGE
RESTAURANT FOR CHANGEWednesday October 18, 2017

One night. 15 cities. 75 restaurants. One goal: supporting Community Food Centres Canada - healthy food programs across our country.

For more information click Restaurants for Change

HEYMISH AND HIP - EATING JEWISH IN TORONTO
HEYMISH AND HIP - EATING JEWISH IN TORONTOThursday October 19, 2017

Bonnie will be participating in a panel discussion on ‘Eating Jewish in Toronto’ with Ruthie Ladovsky, Judy Perly, Anthony Rose and Michael Wex moderated by David Sax. With these panelists it is sure to be lively.

For more information Click Heymish and Hip

This event is a part of From Latkes to Laffas: Jewish Toronto’s Favourite Eateries, 1900–2017 exhibit at Beth Tzedec Synagogue in Toronto.

DEVOUR - THE FOOD AND FILM FESTIVAL
DEVOUR - THE FOOD AND FILM FESTIVALOctober 24 - 29, 2017
(Nova Scotia)

If you love food and film find out more about Devour the delicious Food & film festival in Wolfville Nova Scotia.

For more information click Devour

WHAT'S ON THE TABLE
WHAT'S ON THE TABLEWednesday November 8, 2017

The Stop's annual fundraising gala at AGO. What’s on the Table boasts a dazzling array of delicious and creative food from some of Toronto’s top chefs, paired with some of Niagara’s best wines. The event also features a rousing live auction with fantastic getaways and luxury items, and a fabulous silent auction. All funds raised support our critical food access and community-building programs.

For more information click What's on the Table

BONNIE'S CHALLAH WORKSHOP
BONNIE'S CHALLAH WORKSHOPChallah is the Jewish celebration bread that is enjoyed at every Friday night dinner except during Passover. Now challah is enjoyed by many cultures and loved all week in dishes like French Toast, Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and many other brunch favourites.

In this workshop Bonnie will show you everything you need to know to make the most delicious and beautiful braided challah. Everyone will have a chance to make their own dough, knead the dough and get to know the perfect texture at each stage. You will learn to make braids with 3, 4 and 6 strands and also round braided breads. You will learn about ingredients and all the tricks and tips you need for success.

Workshop includes coffee and cinnamon buns, a light meal, printed recipes, all ingredients and lots of fun. And best of all - you'll take home your own challah on Bonnie's favourite quarter sheet pan to bake for your family and friends.

PLEASE NOTE: Right now this workshop is for groups only but if you are interested in just one or two spots in an open registration class let me know and if I have enough people I will contact you.

For more information send your name, email address and phone number with subject line: Challah Workshop to bonnie@bonniestern.com

EATING ISRAEL: THE LAND OF DIVERSITY AND CULTURE
CULINARY TOUR TO ISRAEL WITH BONNIE STERN <BR/ >FEBRUARY 27 TO MARCH 6, 2017Sunday February 25 - Tuesday March 6, 2018

We had a wonderful response to the itinerary for our 8th culinary trip to Israel February 2018. If you haven’t seen the itinerary - click here.

And if you would like to be on our e-mailing list for future trips please send your name, email and phone number, with subject line: Trips, to bonnie@bonniestern.com (if you are not already on the list)

For questions about the itinerary contact Bonnie
bonnie@bonniestern.com
or 416 484 4810

 
For an application form or questions about travel contact Idit at Aufgang Travel
idit@aufgangtravel.com or 905 660 0860

 

Restaurant Recommendations and More
TORONTO
Canis Restaurant
746 Queen Street West
Toronto
416 203 3317
Creativity and talent combined with great Canadian ingredients makes this place very special. There’s a tasting menu or a small regular menu – we chose the later and everything was delicious.
Moderate to Expensive
Ardo Restaurant
243 King Street East
Toronto
647 347 8930
Memories of a delicious spicy pizza and a tender succulent veal chop with mushrooms will bring us back here again.
Moderate to Expensive
Richmond Station
1 Richmond Street West
Toronto
647 748 1444
This busy restaurant is always a treat. They have a limited menu but everything is always good. I especially love their burger with beet relish. We had an excellent dessert special that was very Copenhagen-ish (the pastry chef had just come back) - dried chocolate mousse, green tea crumble and white chocolate ice cream.
Moderate
Roselle Desserts
362 King Street East
Toronto
416 368 8188
If you love desserts don’t miss Roselle. Everything I tasted from chewy chocolate chip cookies to luscious lemon meringue tarts to stunning cakes (eg Opera, the Earl and a coconut/meringue/passionfruit slice) to buttermilk vanilla soft serve with pastry cream, crumble and fresh peaches, was very special.
Moderate
Featured Recipes
SHEET PAN ROASTED TOMATOES WITH HERBS AND GARLIC
  • 4 lbs tomatoes and cherry tomatoes, a variety of colours and sizes
  • 4 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 long sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 sprigs each fresh rosemary, oregano and basil
  • SHEET PAN ROASTED TOMATOES WITH HERBS AND GARLIC Try to find local tomatoes in different colours, varieties and shapes – I bought mine at the farmers’ market. But even supermarket tomatoes will taste great when roasted. The roasting process evaporates some of the water, intensifying the flavour and then salt, olive oil and herbs do the rest.

    These can be used in so many ways – on pasta, pizza or bruschetta, in omelettes or frittatas, on risotto or polenta and more.



    Method:

    1. Cut large tomatoes into 1/4" to 1/2" slices. Cut cherry tomatoes in half (small ones can be left whole). Cut long-ish plum tomatoes into rounds. Arrange in a single layer on a 12"x18" baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Nestle garlic slices in and around the tomatoes. If tomatoes are really juicy squeeze out some of the juice and seeds into a bowl and use in salad dressing, soups or tomato sauces.

    2. Sprinkle tomatoes with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. Arrange herbs over the top. (If the tomatoes look too delicious to cook, drizzle with balsamic vinegar and eat them now. Then start again.)

    3. Roast on bottom rack of a preheated 450F oven 25 to 35 minutes or until tomatoes are tinged with brown and herbs are dried. Discard stems of the herbs and any large brittle pieces. (Don't forget to dip some bread into the pan juices as the chef’s treat.)

    makes 2 to 3 cups

    RICOTTA CHEESE WITH PESTO AND ROASTED TOMATOES
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed gently
  • 1 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese (drained if necessary)
  • coarse sea salt (eg Maldon) and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup roasted tomatoes with some juices (see above recipe)
  • a few drops good quality balsamic vinegar, optional
  • a few sprigs fresh basil
  • crusty bread, toast or GF vegetable chips
  • RICOTTA CHEESE WITH PESTO AND ROASTED TOMATOES This is a great appetizer using the roasted tomatoes. If you have large rounds of tomatoes chop them up so they can easily be spooned on bread or chips. Keep any extra pesto refrigerated (the olive oil may solidify but will melt at room temperature) and use on pasta, soups or sandwiches.  If your ricotta seems ‘wet’ rather than thick and creamy, drain in a paper towel lined strainer and stir until smooth.

    Method:

    1. Make pesto - finely chop garlic with salt on a cutting board until paste-y. Add basil leaves and chop again until basil and garlic are well-combined. Place in a bowl and add olive oil. Reserve.

    2. Line a one cup dry measure with plastic wrap, spoon in ricotta and unmold onto a serving plate. Sprinkle cheese with sea salt and pepper.

    3. Spoon tomatoes around the cheese. Drizzle with a few tablespoons pesto. Garnish with fresh basil.

    serves 6

    ROAST SALMON WITH CORN RAGOUT
  • 4 fillets salmon (wild if available), salmon trout or cod, (about 1 1/4 lbs)
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika


  • corn ragout:
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • pinch ground cumin, optional
  • 1/4 tsp pureed chipotles or chipotle sauce (eg Chipotle Tabasco), or more to taste
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 3 cups corn (cut from 3 ears corn)
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
  • ROAST SALMON WITH CORN RAGOUT I first made this with wild salmon but if it isn’t available it’s also great with salmon trout or cod. Serve hot or at room temperature – great for alfresco dinners. And the corn is delicious on its own as a side dish.

    Method:

    1. Rub salmon with olive oil, salt, pepper and smoked paprika. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

    2. Heat oil in a medium large skillet. Add onions and garlic and cook gently 5 to 6 minutes until wilted but not brown. Add cumin and chipotle and cook another minute adding water if onions are sticking or browning too much. Add corn and saute 4 to 5 minutes just until cooked. Add lime juice, salt and pepper to taste and cilantro.

    3. Just before serving roast fish in a preheated 425F oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until thickest part of fillets (about 1") are just cooked through. Reheat corn if cooked ahead.

    4. Place fish on a platter or individual plates. Spoon some of the corn on top and serve the remaining corn on the side.

    makes 4 servings

    SUSAN DEVINS' ARUGULA SALAD WITH CANDIED RED ONIONS, PARM AND PINENUTS
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 red onions, halved, peeled and sliced about 1/4" thick
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp pine nuts
  • 2 oz shaved parmesan cheese (preferably Parmigiano Reggiano), about 1/2 cup
  • 8 oz baby arugula


  • dressing:
  • 1 1/2 tbsp good balsamic vinegar or balsamic glaze
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt or to taste
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • SUSAN DEVINS' ARUGULA SALAD WITH CANDIED RED ONIONS, PARM AND PINENUTS I tasted this delicious salad at an instagram-worthy dinner party in the garden of my friends Susan and John Devins. Susan first tasted it at the Italian restaurant at Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru. Her colleague, Chef Walter Miculan, gave her the recipe and she still makes it often. If you have extra onions, they are fantastic in grilled cheese sandwiches.

    Method:

    1. Heat oil in a large heavy skillet. Add onions and cook until slightly softened and browned lightly about 5 minutes. Add sugar and balsamic and cook gently, stirring often, about 10 to 15 minutes longer until tender but not mushy. Add salt. If onions are sticking or browning too much, add a few tablespoons water and continue cooking until water evaporates. Spread on a plate to cool.

    2. Place pine nuts in an small empty skillet on medium high heat and shake until nuts are browned. Cool.

    3. Place arugula in a serving bowl. Top with onions, pine nuts and cheese. Drizzle with balsamic, salt and olive oil. Toss and serve.

    makes 6 servings

    TOM EARL'S PARTRIDGEBERRY (OR BLUEBERRY) SCONES
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • grated zest (peel) of 1/2 orange or lemon
  • 3/4 cup (6oz) cold butter, cut into small chunks
  • 3/4 cup fresh or frozen partridgeberries or wild (small) blueberries
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup cold cream (18% or whipping), more if necessary


  • topping:
  • 2 tbsp additional cream for brushing tops of scones
  • 1 to 2 tbsp coarse sugar for sprinkling
  • TOM EARL'S PARTRIDGEBERRY (OR BLUEBERRY) SCONES

    On the Fogo Island past of our Newfoundland trip, it was a treat to wake up to a Tilting Harbour B&B breakfast cooked by owner Tom Earl. Crispy bacon, eggs so sunny they shone and these incredibly delicious scones. Tom made them with partridgeberries but if they aren't available use fresh or frozen wild blueberries. Regular blueberries tend to burst and look a bit messy but never messy enough to stop eating them.

    If using frozen berries, use from frozen state.



    Method:

    1. Pulse together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and orange zest in food processor (or whisk together in a large bowl). Add butter and pulse 3 or 4 times - you should still be able to see pieces of butter, (or use a pastry blender or your fingers to break up the butter into pea size pieces).

    2. Transfer flour/butter mixture to a large bowl. Stir in berries. Whisk together eggs and cream. Make a well in the centre of flour mixture and add egg mixture. Using a fork or your fingers, very lightly gather dough together until it forms clumps. If there is any flour not incorporated sprinkle in a bit more cream. If dough is moist, flour work surface generously. Turn dough out onto work surface.

    3. Gently pat dough to about 1" thickness. Cut out 2" rounds as close together as possible (and then pat scraps together gently to make a few more scones), or cut into squares or triangles. Do not overhandle the dough.

    4. Place scones on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush with additional cream and sprinkle generously with sugar.

    5. Bake in a preheated 400F oven 15 to 18 minutes or until lightly browned on top and bottom. Transfer to a cooling rack. Try to cool slightly before eating.

    makes 10 to 12

    GULL SH*T MUFFINS
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar (white or brown)
  • 1/3 cup sifted cocoa
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp vinegar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup melted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup coffee, at room temperature


  • filling:
  • 8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup chopped semisweet chocolate or chocolate chips
  • GULL SH*T MUFFINS On our trip to Newfoundland we spotted ‘Mr Parsons' Gull Sh*t Muffins’ at The Old Store Cafe, a new cafe from Neddie's Harbour Inn in Norris Point (Gros Morne). I knew there had to be a story with that name! It seems that when Mrs. Parsons made these she called them ‘Black Bottom Cupcakes’ but Mr. Parsons wasn’t having any of that fancy talk. He told her they just looked like ‘gull sh*t muffins’ to him. The name stuck and so did the muffins. They are delicious. Here’s my version.

    Method:

    1. Whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and salt.

    2. In another bowl combine vinegar, vanilla, butter and coffee. Pour over dry ingredients and stir just until combined.

    3. Spoon a scant 3 tbsp batter into 12 buttered muffin cups.

    4. Stir sugar into cream cheese until smooth. Stir in egg just until blended. Add chocolate.  Using a small spoon, make a deep well in the middle of each muffin and spoon in about 1 1/2 tbsp cheese mixture. (I tried using a pastry tube but it wasn’t any easier or less messy.)

    5. Bake in a preheated 350F oven 25 to 30 minutes until top springs back when pressed or an instant read meat thermometer reaches 185F.

    makes 12 muffins

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