Bonnie Stern Food News
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Contents

Kitchen Hack

Corporate Services

Bonnie's Book Clubs

News and Events

Bonnie's Cookbooks

Restaurant Recommendations

Featured Recipes

Contact

Bonnie Stern

Phone: 416 484 4810

Email:
bonnie@bonniestern.com

Follow Bonnie:

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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 wrote a weekly newspaper column for almost 30 years, first for the Toronto Star and then for the National Post. She offers a wide variety of corporate services, cooking workshops and unique book clubs where authors actually attend and dinner is included. Bonnie is the recipient of the 2007 Premier’s Award.

 

May 2019

One of my favourite things about running the cooking school was hosting culinary experts from around the world. Last month three of our guests caught my attention, bringing back a lot of memories for me.

The first is Madhur Jaffrey. Whenever I am in New York I try to connect with her – actor, cookbook author and television star (on NBC’s sitcom – I Feel Bad). And now she is a rapper! Seriously. Watch this and enjoy: Mr. Cardamom -Nani

This video did not stir up memories of Madhur teaching at the school per se but it did remind me of how she kept students mesmerized with her amazing stories and satiated with her delicious food. Madhur will be in Toronto in June, see News and Events below.

I also remembered Diana Kennedy’s classes on traditional Mexican food when I saw the new documentary at Hot Docs Food & Film Program, Nothing Fancy: Diana Kennedy. Diana wrote many cookbooks on Mexican food and is a dedicated environmentalist. I remembered the time the power went out during a class and it didn’t phase her one bit. She said “I live in Mexico. That type of thing happens all the time.” (I was very happy we had a gas stove.) The film is excellent and explains a lot about her unconventional life, passion for regional Mexican cooking and determination to discover and promote it. See Diana’s recipe for guacamole in the recipe section below.

And then I was flooded with memories when I heard Giuliano Bugialli had died. Giuliano taught at my school so many times he was part of our cooking school family. He was a serious historian and made history delicious. He never wanted to create or modernize recipes – he wanted to preserve traditional recipes so that they would never be forgotten. He started writing his award-winning cookbooks and teaching for me before so many of the Italian recipes and ingredients we now take for granted were easily available in North America. This included balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, Parmigiano Reggiano, tiramisu, panna cotta, risotto, polenta, focaccia. But the thing I remember the most is his homemade pasta. He made the dough by hand and insisted on using a hand-cranked machine. He told me if I didn’t have an Imperia pasta machine he would have to bring it from New York and it was heavy and he would be mad. Of course I found one for him. He made enough dough for 30 people at one time and rolled it out in one piece. (I usually make enough for 6 people at a time to put this in perspective.) The piece was so long, the whole class would have to stand up and carry it, with thumbs up, so they didn’t pierce the pasta dough. And in the end, the ribbon of dough was so long they had to carry it out the door and down the street. It was truly fantastic. And his pasta is still the best pasta I have ever tasted. One of the people who called to share their memories of Giuliano with me was Leo Spralja, owner of Joso’s in Toronto. Giuliano loved that restaurant so much it was the first place he wanted to go when he arrived. He always said it was the best Italian food he had ever tasted outside of Italy. Giuliano will never be forgotten.

At our book club featuring Anthony De Sa last week, we remembered Wayson Choy, who died at the end of April. Wayson was the first author to appear at my book club. It was 2004 and his book was All That Matters. The evening was magical in so many ways. Wayson was fantastic and it was such a unique idea to have the author present at a relaxed and intimate book club where you can ask questions and get to know the author. Fifteen years later it is still going strong. Thanks to all of you who come and support it. We have a few seats left in the June book club and will be announcing exciting new guest authors for this fall in the next newsletter.

One day I know it will be spring. Delicious wishes,

Bonnie

Kitchen Hack
HOW TO CUT BROWNIES, BLONDIES OR OTHER BAR COOKIES
HOW TO CUT BROWNIES, BLONDIES OR OTHER BAR COOKIESCutting brownies, blondies or other bar cookies while they are in the pan (and especially when they are still warm) is the hardest and messiest way to cut them. The easiest method I have found to make professional looking squares is to line the pan on all sides and bottom with parchment paper* and after baking, cool on a rack and then refrigerate the whole ‘cake’ in the pan. When it is cold, remove the ‘cake’ from the pan using the paper to help, trim the edges (eat them or freeze for emergency snacking) and then cut the brownies into the size you want with a long, heavy knife.

*I know, I know but I reuse my parchment paper as many times as possible by wiping it clean and drying. We often store our used paper in the freezer. Be mindful of food allergies.



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 Canada's leading authors (and some from farther away), 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. However, 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.


JUNE

AMY JONES: EVERY LITTLE PIECE OF ME
AMY JONES: EVERY LITTLE PIECE OF MEAmy Jones earned rave reviews for her bestselling debut novel, We’re All in This Together. In June Bonnie is pleased to welcome Amy to the book club as she launches her new novel Every Little Piece of Me.

Ava Hart is the most reluctant cast member of a reality TV show based on her big city family's (mostly staged) efforts to run a B&B in small-town Nova Scotia. Every family has its problems, but Ava has grown up seeing her family's every up and down broadcast on national television, after the show becomes an unexpected success for reasons that will take a heavy toll on the Harts.

Mags Kovach is the charismatic lead singer of a struggling Halifax rock band hoping to be the Next Big Thing. For years she's managed to contain her demons and navigate the uglier aspects of being a woman in the music world, but after a devastating loss, she turns her anger on the only person she can: herself.

As their private tragedies continue to set social media and tabloid headlines on fire, their every move subjected to an endless stream of public commentary, it will be their unexpected friendship that will save them. They will push back against the roles they've been forced to play, and take back control of something they thought they'd lost forever - the right to their own stories.

Date: Monday June 3, 2019
Time: 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Location: The Edible Story
320 Richmond Street East #105, Toronto (Entrance on Sherbourne)
Fee:
165 + HST (includes dinner, beverages, gratuity and a copy of Every Little Piece of Me sent out as soon as possible)
Advance registration only: Bonnie Stern 416 484 4810




Book Club Location
 
The Edible Story3
The Edible Story2
The Edible Story1
The edible story
The Edable Story5
The Edible Storyx

The Edible Story
This cooking school, catering company and event space is the perfect place for our themed book club. Owners/chefs Alanna Fleischer and Brian Cheng will create a menu to suit.

320 Richmond Street East #105
Toronto

(Entrance on Sherbourne)
647 278 1819

www.theediblestory.com

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
Recevoir au goût du cœur: recettes, menus et conseils pour des réunions de famille et d’amis
Recevoir au gout du coeur:
recettes, menus et conseils pour des réunions de famille et d’amis

Published by Trecarre, 2000, 320 pages, paperback

$29.95
Out of Print Cookbooks
Out of Print Cookbooks
Here is a list of Bonnie Stern classics that are out of print. Limited used copies are sometimes available on line.

Food Processor Cuisine

At My Table

Bonnie Stern’s
Cuisinart Cookbook

In the Kitchen
with Bonnie Stern

Cooking with Bonnie Stern

Simply HeartSmart Cooking

More HeartSmart Cooking






News And Events
THE INCREDIBLE INDIAN KITCHEN:
MADHUR JAFFREY AND VIKAS KHANNA IN CONVERSATION
THE INCREDIBLE INDIAN KITCHEN:<BR/ >MADHUR JAFFREY AND VIKAS KHANNA IN CONVERSATIONWednesday June 5, 2019

Celebrate the rich traditions of Indian cuisine with renowned chefs and authors Madhur Jaffrey and Vikas Khanna, in support of the ROM's exhibition Treasures of a Desert Kingdom: The Royal Arts of Jodhpur, India. Moderated by award winning journalist Jacob Richler, explore the deep history of Indian regional flavours in both traditional cuisines, and how it has influenced the personal gastronomies of two of the industry's most influential personalities.

For more information click The Incredible Indian Kitchen

TORONTO TASTE
TORONTO TASTESunday June 9, 2019

Toronto’s original, celebrated, culinary extravaganza returns!

On Sunday June 9, the very best of the city’s food scene come together at Toronto Taste for one spectacular evening in support of Second Harvest, Canada’s largest food rescue charity.

For more information click Toronto Taste 2019

THE STOP'S NIGHT MARKET 2019
THE STOP'S NIGHT MARKET 2019Tuesday June 18 or Wednesday June 19, 2019

Inspired by night markets from around the world, The Stop’s Night Market brings Torontonians together to celebrate community and the power of food.

This popular fundraiser features all-you-can-eat dishes from 65+ of Toronto’s best chefs, accompanied by 20+ local drink vendors and an eclectic mix of local musicians, DJ’s, and performers. All proceeds support The Stop’s vital programming.

For more information and tickets click The Stop's Night Market 2019

NEW! ITALIAN ALL THE TIME
NEW! ITALIAN ALL THE TIMEThinking about Giuliano Bugialli made me very hungry for Italian food. And made me remember all the other wonderful Italian guest chefs we hosted like Marcella Hazan, Biba Caggiano and Carlo Middione. This dinner class will feature two types of pasta – one homemade and one very quick recipe with dry pasta, and some of my other favourite Italian recipes like crispy baked chicken with lemon sauce and tiramisu.

Please Note: As with all our classes and workshops, right now we are only offering this to groups (groups of ten with one person organizing the group).

Please send your name, email address and phone number with subject line: Italian All the Time to bonnie@bonniestern.com and let us know if you are interested in bringing a group or would like to join an open class.

ISRAELI FAMILY DINNER
ISRAELI FAMILY DINNERIsraeli food is so 'hot' now it is what everyone wants to eat. Come and learn the ingredients and flavours that make it so popular. Israel is an immigrant country and Israeli cuisine is a delicious mash-up of food and flavours from the Middle East, the Mediterranean and North Africa.

Workshop includes appetizers on arrival, lunch or dinner, recipes and lots of fun.

Please Note: As with all our classes and workshops, right now we are only offering this to groups (groups of ten with one person organizing the group).

Please send your name, email address and phone number with subject line: Israeli Family Dinner to bonnie@bonniestern.com and let us know if you are interested in bringing a group or would like to join an open class.

"Bonnie: thank you once more for a wonderful evening of amazing food and inspiration. I was on a food high when I got home and could not get the thought of your incredible chicken out of my mind! Your recipes are the best."  Barbara Kerbel

BONNIE'S CHALLAH WORKSHOP
BONNIE'S CHALLAH WORKSHOPChallah is the Jewish celebration bread that is enjoyed at every Friday night dinner except during Passover. However, now challah has risen way above Jewish cooking and is a favourite for French toast, grilled cheese sandwiches, bread pudding and so much more.

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 challah 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.

This very popular workshop includes coffee and cinnamon buns, snacks, a delicious lunch or dinner, 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: As with all our classes and workshops, right now we are only offering this to groups (groups of ten with one person organizing the group).

For more information please send your name, email address and phone number with subject line: Bonnie’s Challah Workshop to bonnie@bonniestern.com and let us know if you are interested in bringing a group or would like to join an open class.

EATING ISRAEL: THE LAND OF DIVERSITY AND CULTURE - SAVE THE DATE
EATING ISRAEL: THE LAND OF DIVERSITY AND CULTURESunday (dinner) March 1 to Tuesday (breakfast) March 10, 2020

We had a wonderful 9th culinary trip to Israel in February 2019. If you would like to be on our email list for our 10th anniversary tour and other 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).

We are hoping to send out a sample itinerary, prices and registration information soon.

"Thank you for the experience of a life time! It was truly wonderful! I can’t imagine ever being able to see and do all that we did without you!" Diana D’Amelio

"Thank you for an amazing trip. Sometimes you build things up in your mind. I had been looking forward to doing this for years and worried I had set expectations too high. You and this trip blew all my hopes out of the water - you completely exceeded every hope." Joanna Smith

“We had such a unique opportunity to meet with Israeli culinary experts, and we learned not only about the food, but about the culture and efforts to build bridges of peace. The tour introduced us to so many things we would never have discovered on our own.” Kathy Kruk

Restaurant Recommendations and More
NEW YORK, NEW YORK
Balthazar
80 Spring Street
New York
212 965 1414
The first time I went to Balthazar, Martha Stewart was sitting at a table across the room. Many people have similar stories about sitting near or spotting celebrities. It may not be as trendy now but it is still a great place. We had a delicious lunch with perfect service.
Moderate
Atla
372 Lafayette Street
New York
646 837 6464
Enrique Olivera is considered by many to be the most influential Mexican chef in the world. He has two restaurants in New York with chef partner Daniela Soto-Innes – the upscale Cosme and more casual Atla. As much as I love to try new restaurants every time I am in NYC,  I seem to also want to return to Atla. The food is amazing, the cocktails are great and the service is friendly and relaxed.
Moderate
Henry at the Life Hotel
19 West 31st Street
New York
212 615 9910
We were excited to try Pan-African food from Chef J.J. Johnson. Everything about this restaurant is diverse and includes food from Africa, South America, Asia and the Caribbean. We really didn’t know what to try first and after a few delicious appetizers we told our server our three possibilities for the main and told him to surprise us. We ended up with the Afropot, a huge bowl of seafood soup that included lobster (a whole one), prawns, mussels, clams, Chinese sausage, cassava with the most incredible broth. Really delicious and exciting.
Moderate
Ole & Steen
873 Broadway Avenue
New York
929 209 1020
The amazing bakery in Copenhagen, Lagkagehuset, recently opened in New York (2 locations) with the more pronounceable name of Ole & Steen. But don’t worry - everything is just as delicious. (And we ordered almost everything.) We went for breakfast and I could have stayed all day at this wonderful, modern bakery cafe.
Moderate
Narcissa at the Standard Hotel
25 Cooper Square
New York
212 228 3344
Brunch at Narcissa where sourdough king, Max Blachman-Gentile, has been appointed chef de cuisine now, obviously, serves the most amazing bread. Everything else was delicious too especially all the secret menu items – particularly the vegan nachos. Ask what's on the secret menu.
Moderate
10 Corso Como
1 Fulton Street
New York
212 265 9500
After a long walk we ended up downtown at the Seaport and our friend Mitchell Davis remembered that he heard that 10 Corso Como had the best cacio e pepe in New York. It was between brunch and dinner – a perfect time for a pasta snack. There were only a few people there in the middle of the afternoon so we had great service and the pasta was so delicious we ended up with a pizza, salad and a marvellous lemon semifreddo. So much for a snack.
Moderate to Expensive
Crown Shy
70 Pine Street
New York
212 517 1932
Ask anyone and you will hear that Crown Shy is the hottest restaurant in New York. What else is there to say?  Everyone in the food world was there and loving it. Even the ice cream was so much more than just ice cream.
Expensive
TORONTO
Rosalinda
133 Richmond Street West
Toronto
416 907 0650
I went to Rosalinda as part of a Food & Film event featuring the film Nothing Fancy: Diana Kennedy. The film is about the life and work of Mexican cooking expert Diana Kennedy and it is getting great reviews. Diana taught at my cooking school many times and I thought the producer Elizabeth Carroll represented her very well – her respect and love for traditional Mexican cooking and the enviroment. After the film we had lunch at Rosalinda where chefs Rodrigo Aguilar (El Rey) and Matthew Ravenscoft (Rosalinda) created a special menu for this occasion and spoke about their journeys in Mexican cooking. See Diana’s recipe for guacamole in the recipe section below.
Moderate
Bar Buca Eglinton:
Breakfast and Apertivo
101 Eglinton Avenue E.
Toronto
416 599 2822

 

I have recommended this second location of Bar Buca before but this is the first time I have been for breakfast. It was so delicious. They do not take reservations but if you go at an off time – we went at 9:45 on a Thursday morning, there was no problem. I highly recommend both items we had – the pulled eggs (kind of like an open omelette but different) with burrata and the poached eggs with tomato sauce (kind of like shakshuka but different). See my version of pulled eggs in the recipe section below.

They also have a special happy hour on weekdays from 4 to 6pm called ‘aperitivo’. When you order a glass of wine or cocktail, you receive a chip that allows you to go to the aperitivo buffet laden with salads, cold cuts and more and help yourself to one (smallish) plate of deliciousness. One chip per drink. Go before this Milan tradition takes off and you can’t get in!
Moderate

Sugo
1281 Bloor Street West
Toronto
416 535 1717
Sugo is a fun-loving, casual and delicious Italian restaurant. The food is family style in every way – portions are large and easily shared and it’s Italian-grandmother old-fashioned comfort food. The restaurant is small, noisy and very crowded. They do not take reservations and there are often line-ups. All of this contributes to the feeling you are in the right place!
Reasonable
Seoul Shakers
1241 Bloor Street West
Toronto
No phone
We went for a cocktail at Seoul Shakers but couldn’t resist ordering something – the aromas were intoxicating (even before the drink). We ordered the kangpungi eggplant and it was so amazing we will be back for dinner soon.
Moderate
Featured Recipes
DIANA KENNEDY'S GUACAMOLE
  • 1/4 small onion, finely chopped (about 3 tbsp)
  • 1 or 2 serrano chiles, chopped
  • 4 to 5 sprigs fresh coriander, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 tsp salt or more to taste
  • 1 tomato, halved, seeded and chopped (I used a few cherry tomatoes but don't tell Diana)
  • 2 ripe medium-sized avocadoes
  • DIANA KENNEDY'S GUACAMOLEWatching the film 'Nothing Fancy: Diana Kennedy' (part of the Hot Docs Food and Film Program) brought me back to all the times that Diana Kennedy taught at my cooking school. She taught traditional recipes from all over Mexico and allowed some variations but only within limits - eg, in guacamole you can add a suspicion of lime juice but never garlic. Guacamole actually means a ‘mixture of avocado’ and Diana insisted that a molcajete (a mortar and pestle made from volcanic rock shown in the photo) was the best thing to make it in but also said if you didn't have one, chop the onion, cilantro and chile finely and coarsely mash in the avocado. She said to eat it as soon as it was made because the many tricks you can use to prevent the avocado from discolouring only work up to a point. Serve with tortilla chips, use in tacos or as a topping on grilled meat or fish.This recipe is adapted and updated from the Cuisines of Mexico by Diana Kennedy.

    Method:

    1. If you have a molcajete add the onion, chiles, cilantro and salt. Grind together into a paste. Otherwise chop everything together finely and reserve about 1/3 for a topping.

    2. Add half the tomatoes and the avocado to the remaining 2/3 of the onion/chile mixture and mash coarsely together.

    3. Serve in the molcajete (if using one) or transfer to a serving bowl and top with the reserving onions, chiles, herbs and tomato.

    Makes about 1 1/2 cups

    GIL HOVAV'S TUNISIAN FRITTATA
  • 1 1/2 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into 2" chunks
  • 2 cups frozen peas and carrots (or chopped cooked vegetables)
  • 9 eggs
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp hot paprika or aleppo pepper or black pepper
  • 1 cup chopped fresh leafy herbs (combination of parsley, cilantro, dill, basil, green onions etc)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • GIL HOVAV'S TUNISIAN FRITTATAWhat a great brunch dish. Or lunch or dinner. This is also delicious in a sandwich. Gil calls this mekahammar and here's my version. If you have leftover mashed potatoes this is a great way to use them up.

    Method:

    1. Cook potatoes in boiling salted water 20 to 25 minutes. Lift out of water. Mash roughly. Cool and reserve - you should have about 3 cups.

    2. Bring water back to the boil. Add frozen peas and carrots to water and cook 2 minutes. Lift out of water. Cool.

    3. Bring water back to the boil. Add two of the nine eggs and cook 10 to 12 minutes. Drain, run under cold water, crack shells, and cool in cold water a few minutes. Peel and mash.

    4. Whisk remaining 7 eggs in a large bowl. Add salt, turmeric, paprika, hot pepper and leafy herbs. Stir in potatoes, peas and carrots and hard cooked eggs.

    5. Heat oil in a 9" or 10" non-stick skillet. Add egg mixture. Cook 3 to 5 minutes and transfer to a preheated 350F oven. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes until eggs are set in the centre and lightly browned. Slide or invert onto a platter. Serve warm or room temperature or cold.

    Make 4 to 6 servings

    ARCTIC CHAR WITH LEMON AND CAPERS (PICCATA)
  • 1 lb arctic char fillets cut into four to six pieces or other fish fillets approximately 1/2" thick
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp butter - divided
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine or chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 to 2 tbsp capers, rinsed
  • 2 tbsp coarsely chopped fresh parsley
  • ARCTIC CHAR WITH LEMON AND CAPERS (PICCATA)Fish and shellfish are nature's fast foods. Fish cooks very quickly - a good guideline is 10 minutes per inch of thickness. You can use other fish fillets about 1/2" thick. I like serving arctic char - it is similar to salmon but has a delicious mild flavour, pink flesh and very healthful.

    Method:

    1. Season fish generously with salt and pepper. Place flour in a shallow bowl and dip fish into flour lightly. shaking off any excess.

    2. Place a large skillet on medium high heat and add 1 tbsp butter and olive oil. Heat until butter melts and pan is hot. Add fish, flesh side down and cook 2 to 3 minutes. Turn fish over gently and cook 2 to 3 minutes longer. It should be lightly browned. Remove to a serving dish.

    3. Wipe pan out with paper towels, return to heat and add wine. Bring to a boil and cook down until liquid reduces to a few tablespoons. Add lemon juice and capers. Bring to a boil again and cook gently one minute. Swirl in butter and parsley. Spoon over fish. Sprinkle with parsley.

    Makes 4 servings

    PULLED EGGS WITH CHEESE AND PESTO
  • 2 or 3 eggs
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 2 tbsp butter or extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 oz grated cheese or soft cheese


  • pesto:
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • big handful fresh basil, leaves only
  • 2 tbsp grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 1 tbsp pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • microgreens
  • PULLED EGGS WITH CHEESE AND PESTOI love omelets and I love scrambled eggs - this is as if they got married and had a child. More tender than a frittata or an open-faced omelet and not as 'piecey' as most scrambled eggs, it's so delicious. Use any toppings you like - salsa, tomato salad, avocado etc. This recipe was inspired by a breakfast item at Bar Buca in Toronto. I always seem to get a good idea there that I can use in my own cooking. (Photo shows pulled eggs with the spring vegetable salad on top.)

    Method:

    1. Break eggs into a bowl and mix together with a fork but not thoroughly. Add salt and pepper and water.

    2. Prepare pesto by chopping garlic, a little salt and pepper, basil, cheese and pine nuts together until it forms a paste. Place in a bowl and stir in olive oil. Taste and adjust seasoning.

    3. Place butter or oil in an 8" or 9" non-stick pan and heat on medium. When hot add eggs. Allow them to set around the edges and then, with a fork, pull the set edges towards the centre. Continue doing this until the centre is higher than the rest but still soft and a little runny.

    4. Sprinkle with cheese and dot with pesto. Gently slide onto a dinner plate and top with microgreens.

    Makes one to 2 servings.

    SAUTEED SPRING SALAD WITH ASPARAGUS, SUGAR SNAP PEAS, PEAS, GREEN BEANS AND PESTO DRESSING
  • 1/2 lb green beans, cleaned and trimmed
  • 1 lb asparagus, trimmed, tough stems peeled, diagonally cut into 2" lengths (or 2 cups broccoli florets)
  • 1/2 lb snow peas, de-stringed and trimmed
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen peas
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


  • pesto dressing:
  • 1 small clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 tbsp chopped preserved lemon peel
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and chopped (more or less depending on heat)
  • 2 tbsp pistachios, coarsely chopped (or add to dressing)
  • 1 cup fresh basil or cilantro leaves
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or more
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 4 cups pea shoots, mache or any gentle lettuce, optional
  • SAUTEED SPRING SALAD WITH ASPARAGUS, SUGAR SNAP PEAS, PEAS, GREEN BEANS AND PESTO DRESSINGThis salad can also be served at room temperature simply by combining blanched vegetables with the dressing (omit the saute-ing part).

    Method:

    1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Have a large bowl of ice water near the stove. Have a sheet pan lined with paper towels by the bowl of ice water. Add beans to the water and cook 3 to 4 minutes until bright green and cooked but still crunchy. Lift out of water with a spider strainer (long-handle strainer) and place in ice water. Add sugar snap peas to boiling water and cook 2 minutes. Remove beans to the baking sheet and add sugar snap peas to the ice water adding more ice when necessary. Add peas to boiling water and cook one to 2 minutes. Remove sugar snap peas to sheet pan and add peas to ice water. Repeat with asparagus, cooking 3 to 4 minutes depending on thickness. When all the vegetables are cooked pat dry and place in a large bowl.

    2. To served warm, heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a large skillet and add green onions. Cook about 30 seconds. Add beans, asparagus, snow peas and peas to the oil and saute until warm.

    3. For the dressing either chop/mince by hand or place in a blender garlic, preserved lemon, salt, jalapeno, pistachios, and herbs. Stir in olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Taste and add more salt if necessary.

    4. Add dressing to the vegetables incorporate well and serve over greens if using.

    Makes 4 to 6 servings

    GIULIANO BUGIALLI'S PANNA COTTA
  • 2 cups whipping cream, divided
  • 1/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean or 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 strip lemon peel
  • 1 pkg unflavoured gelatin (1 scant tablespoon)
  • 1/4 cup cold milk
  • 3 tbsp light coloured rum
  • GIULIANO BUGIALLI'S PANNA COTTAWhen Giuliano Bugialli taught traditional Italian cooking at my school in the 80's and 90's he introduced us to the most delicious dishes that were 'new' to most of us. Panna cotta was certainly not all the rage in those days.  Neither was tiramisu and so much more. This recipe is adapted from 'Foods of Italy' by Giuliano Bugialli. His books are still the Bible for chefs and home cooks alike.  Giuliano liked to line the ramekins with caramel as in creme caramel (don't mention French desserts to Giuliano) but I like the simple diced strawberries mixed with a little sugar syrup on the panna cotta, or other fresh fruit.

    Method:

    1. Heat 1 cup cream with icing sugar, vanilla bean (if using) and lemon peel in a heavy saucepan over medium heat.

    2. Meanwhile, sprinkle the gelatin over the cold milk in a small bowl. Let sit about 5 to 10 minutes to soften.

    3. When cream is hot, remove vanilla bean (you can rinse, dry and reuse or keep in your sugar canister) and discard lemon peel. Add rum and softened gelatin to the hot cream and stir together well to be sure gelatin dissolves completely. Transfer to a bowl and cool to room temperature but not at all set. (Add vanilla extract now if you did not use a vanilla bean.)

    4. Whip remaining cream until almost stiff. Fold into cooled gelatin mixture. Spoon into 6 ramekins, cover and refrigerate at least two hours until completely set.

    5. Unmold onto small serving plates.

    Makes 6 servings

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