Archive for July, 2013

If you haven’t tried radicchio on the grill, you don’t know what you are missing. When raw, this red leaf chicory is bitter and spicy, making it a great addition to summer salads. When grilled, however, the bitterness mellows and the radicchio becomes tender and smoky. It’s an excellent side dish for most barbecued meats, including this grilled chicken recipe from the July 2013 issue of Canadian Living.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Look for an all-natural grainy mustard, such as President’s Choice Old Fashioned Dijon and a balsamic vinegar with no sulfites added. Make sure the goat cheese does not contain preservatives, and use local honey.

Cut the radicchio into four wedges, keeping root end intact, and drizzle with dressing

Baste the chicken toward the end of its cooking time

Grill the radichio quickly, while the chicken is resting

Grilled chicken with balsamic radicchio


2 tbsp (30 ml) liquid honey

1 tbsp (15 ml) grainy mustard

¼ tsp (1 ml) salt

¼ tsp (1 ml) pepper

1 lb (454 g) boneless skinless chicken breasts

2 heads radicchio lettuce

2 tbsp (30 ml) balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

1/3 cup (75 ml) crumbled goat cheese

1 tbsp (15 ml) chopped fresh chives


Stir together honey, mustard and half each of the salt and pepper; set aside.

Place chicken on greased grill over medium heat; close lid and grill, turning once, until browned, about 8 minutes. Brush with half of the honey mixture. Grill, covered and turning and brushing frequently with honey mixture, until no longer pink inside, about 7 minutes. Transfer to cutting board and tent with foil; let stand for 5 minutes before slicing.

Meanwhile, keeping root end intact, cut each radicchio into 4 wedges. Whisk together vinegar, oil and remaining salt and pepper; drizzle over radicchio.

Add to grill; grill, covered and turning once, until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to platter; top with goat cheese and chives. Serve with sliced chicken. Serves 4.

From the July 2013 issue of Canadian Living

If you want to get dinner on the table in a hurry, you can’t go wrong with grilled shrimp. Marinate peeled and deveined shrimp while you preheat the barbecue, pop them on skewers and grill for about five minutes. This recipe from the Summer 2013 issue of the LCBO’s Food and Drink magazine uses a simple but flavourful marinade of fresh tarragon, lemon juice and olive oil. Serve with rice, greens, a bean salad or, as I did, the season’s first corn on the cob. If you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes before you thread the shrimp onto them; otherwise they may burn up on the grill.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

I use frozen shrimp, because the ingredients are listed on the bag. Look for a brand with no preservatives except salt. Be sure to use fresh lemon juice.


1 lb. (500 g) large (21/25 size) uncooked shrimp, peeled

3 tbsp (45 ml) lemon juice

2 tbsp (30 ml) chopped fresh tarragon leaves

1 tbsp (15 ml) olive oil

Salt and pepper

Marinate shrimp in lemon juice, tarragon and olive oil

If you use wooden skewers, be sure to soak them in water for a half hour first

Grill the shrimp for about five minutes, or until pink and cooked through

Lemon tarragon shrimp with corn on the cob


Grease grill and preheat to medium-high. While barbecue is preheating, place shrimp, lemon juice, tarragon and oil in a bowl and toss to coat.

Just before grilling, remove shrimp from marinade and thread onto skewers. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Place shrimp on grill and barbecue until pink, turning occasionally, about five minutes or until done. Serves 4.

From the Summer 2013 issue of Food and Drink

Chicken cutlets cook in no time at all, so this recipe from the Summer 2013 issue of the LCBO’s Food and Drink is a good choice for a quick weeknight supper. If you can’t find cutlets, slice a skinless, boneless chicken breast in half lengthwise and pound with the smooth side of a meat tenderizer to an even thickness. The cutlets are pan-seared with fresh sage and served with stir-fried green beans, fennel and red onion. I didn’t have fennel and the mélange was fine without it. Orzo or rice with chopped chives is a good accompaniment. It’s best to sear the chicken in two batches; if the pan is too crowded the chicken will steam and won’t develop a brown exterior.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Use butter that contains one ingredient: cream. Use freshly squeezed lemon juice, as the concentrates contain sodium benzoate and are bitter.

Pound chicken to an even thickness

Sear chicken in batches, adding sage to second batch

The chicken should develop a nice brown exterior

Stir fry the vegetables in a separate pan

Pan-fried chicken with stir fried green beans and onion


1 tbsp (15 ml) butter

2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 lb. (500 g) thin chicken cutlets or boneless skinless chicken breasts, split in half and pounded thinly

Salt and pepper

6 sage leaves

2 handfuls of green beans

1 small fennel bulb, cored and cut into thin strips

¼ small red onion, cut into thin strips

½ lemon, juiced


Heat butter and half the oil over medium-high heat in a large frying pan. Add garlic. Stir just until garlic is golden, remove and discard. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Working in two batches, so as to not crowd the pan, add half the cutlets; cook until a deep golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes in total. Add sage leaves while cooking the second batch.

Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a large, separate frying pan over medium-high heat. Add green beans, fennel and red onion. Season with salt and pepper. Stir-fry until beans are tender, reducing heat as needed, 5 to 10 minutes.

Return first batch of cutlets to pan and reheat. Squeeze lemon juice over top and swish meat in any juices. Place vegetable mixture on plate. Evenly divide cutlets between plates, placing over vegetables. Serves 4.

From the Summer 2013 issue of Food and Drink

Unlike regular couscous—small grains of durum wheat—Israeli couscous is a toasted pasta shaped in tiny balls, about the size of small peas. The cooking method is different too; to make regular couscous, you usually boil liquid, add the couscous, turn off the heat and let the couscous steam and absorb the liquid. To cook Israeli couscous, which is called Ptitim in Israel, you add the pasta to boiling water, reduce the heat and simmer until the pasta absorbs the liquid. Israel couscous is firmer than the regular kind, so it is an excellent addition to summer salads, such as this one from the early summer issue of the LCBO’s Food and Drink, which also features cherry tomatoes, corn and fresh herbs. Be sure to toss most of the dressing with the cooked couscous while it is still hot, so it can absorb the flavours.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

This recipe uses all-natural ingredients. Be sure to use a real lemon, not lemon concentrate.

Israeli couscous is toasted pasta shaped like peas

Roast cherry or grape tomatoes

You can roast the corn or saute it

Tossing the dressing with hot couscous helps the pasta absorb the flavours

Roasted cherry tomato, corn & Israeli couscous salad


12 oz (375 g) container multicoloured cherry tomatoes, cut in half, about 1½ cups (375 ml)
¼ cup (60 ml) corn, fresh or frozen
3 tbsp (45 ml) olive oil
½ tsp (2 ml) dried oregano leaves
1¼ cups (310 ml) water
½ tsp (2 ml) salt
¾ cup (175 ml) Israeli couscous
1 lemon
¼ tsp (1 ml) each salt and pepper
¼ cup (60 ml) each coarsely chopped mint and thinly snipped chives


Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C).

Place tomatoes and corn on baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 tsp (10 ml) olive oil then sprinkle with oregano. Roast just until tomatoes begin to soften, 3 to 5 minutes. Meanwhile bring water and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add couscous, reduce heat and simmer covered until water is absorbed, 8 to 10 minutes.

Finely grate 1 tsp (5 ml) peel from lemon into a small bowl. Then squeeze out 3 tbsp (45 ml) juice. Whisk in remaining oil, salt and pepper.

Place cooked couscous in a bowl. Add most of the lemon dressing to couscous while it’s still hot. Stir couscous, letting it cool in dressing. Once cool, stir in tomato mixture and fresh herbs. Taste and add remaining lemon dressing if needed.

From the early summer issue of Food and Drink magazine