Archive for September, 2014

I needed to use up the last batch of Swiss chard from the garden, so I used it in this recipe adapted from the October 2014 issue of Real Simple. The recipe calls for collard greens, but you can use Swiss chard, kale or any other hardy green. Brown the chicken and set it aside while you sauté scallions, garlic and ginger. Then add the chard and toss until wilted and tender. Add the sauce, cooked chicken and cashews, toss to coat and serve over steamed rice.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Use tamari instead of soy sauce, because it uses alcohol as a preservative instead of sodium benzoate. Check the cashews for preservatives. I make my own oyster sauce from tamari, sugar and cornstarch (see recipe below). Imagine brand chicken stock and Marukan rice vinegar are additive-free, as is Emile Noel organic sesame oil.

Stir fry the chicken strips until browned and then set aside

Stir fry the Swiss chard until wilted

Add the chicken and cashews back to the pan and coat with sauce

Cashew chicken and greens stir fry


For the sauce

1 tbsp (15 ml) dry sherry

1/3 cup (75 ml) chicken stock

2 ½ tbsp (40 ml) oyster sauce (recipe follows)

2 tsp (10 ml) sesame oil

1 tsp (5 ml) rice vinegar

¼ tsp (1 ml) white pepper

1 tsp (5 ml) cornstarch

Oyster sauce

1 ½ tbsp (25 ml) tamari

1 tbsp (15 ml) sugar

1 ½ tsp (7 ml) cornstarch

For the chicken

3 tbsp (45 ml) canola oil

1 ½ pounds (675 kg) boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into ½ -inch (1.25 cm)strips

2 tbsp (30 ml) cornstarch

Kosher salt

1 bunch scallions, sliced, white and green parts separated

4 cloves garlic, sliced

1 ½ tablespoons (25 ml) finely chopped fresh ginger

2 bunches collard greens, Swiss chard or kale, stems discarded and leaves cut into strips (10 cups/2.5 L))

3 tbsp (45 ml) tamari

½ cup roasted cashews (125 ml)

White rice, for serving


Heat 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over high heat.

Toss the chicken with the cornstarch and ¾ teaspoon (3 ml) salt. Cook, in batches, turning the pieces once, until well browned (but not cooked through), 3 to 4 minutes.

Transfer the chicken to a plate; reserve the skillet. Reduce heat to medium.

Add the remaining tablespoon (15 ml) of oil to the reserved skillet. Add the scallion whites, garlic, and ginger. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the scallions are slightly soft, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add as many greens to the skillet as will fit. Cook, tossing frequently and adding more greens when there is room, until crisp-tender, 5 to 7 minutes.

Add the sauce, cashews and chicken to the skillet. Cook, tossing frequently, until the chicken is cooked through and everything is coated with the sauce, 2 to 3 minutes.

Serve over the rice, topped with the scallion greens. Serves 4.

From the October 2014 issue of Real Simple

This is a very quick and tasty fish recipe from Chatelaine. Mix up a quick vinaigrette of marmalade, vinegar, oil, hot sauce and salt while you are barbecuing the fish. When the fish is done, drizzle it with the vinaigrette and garnish with fresh mint. Instead of barbecuing the fillets, you can sear them for a minute on each side in an oven-proof skillet and then pop them into a 425-degree F (218 degrees C) oven for 5-10 minutes.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

The marmalade, white wine vinegar and sriracha may contain colour and preservatives. Look for an all-natural marmalade, a vinegar with only naturally occurring sulfites and an all-natural hot sauce, such as Tabasco original brand.

Grill the trout or sear it in a pan on top of the stove and then bake

Meanwhile, put together the vinaigrette

Sweet and spicy rainbow trout


¼ cup (60 ml) orange marmalade

¼ cup (60 ml) white wine vinegar

3 tbsp (45 ml) olive oil, divided

1 tbsp (15 ml) sriracha

½ tsp (2.5 ml) salt, divided

4 rainbow trout fillets (200 g each)

½ cup (125 ml) chopped mint


Combine marmalade with vinegar, 2 tbsp (30 ml) oil, sriracha and ¼ tsp (1.25 ml) salt in a Mason jar. Shake until combined.

Preheat barbecue to medium. Brush trout with remaining 1 tbsp (15 ml) oil, then sprinkle with remaining ¼ tsp (1.25 ml) salt. Season with fresh pepper. Oil grill. Barbecue fish, skin-side down, lid closed, until a knife tip inserted into the thickest part of fish and held for 10 sec feels warm, about 8 min. Slide a thin spatula between skin and flesh, then lift trout off skin and onto a platter. Drizzle with vinaigrette and sprinkle with mint just before serving. Serves 4.

From Chatelaine magazine

This recipe from the LCBO’s Food and Drink is company-worthy. Halibut fillets are dredged and covered with panko, briefly fried and then baked. Meanwhile, fry some capers for a crunchy, salty garnish and sauté zucchini and cherry tomatoes for a colourful and delicious accompaniment.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Check the chili powder and panko for colour and preservatives. Look for a Dijon with no sulfites or sodium benzoate; I use President’s Choice Old-Fashioned Dijon. Canola can sometimes contain additives, so buy one that is 100% pure. Unico capers are additive-free.

You will need three shallow bowls or pans for the dredging

Dredged halibut

Brown the halibut until the coating is golden, then bake

Meanwhile, saute the zucchini and tomatoes

Fried capers make a crispy, tangy garnish

Crispy halibut with zucchini saute and fried capers


½ cup (125 ml) all-purpose flour

2 tsp (10 ml) chili powder

½ tsp (2 ml) salt

1 egg

¼ cup (60 ml) milk

1 tbsp (15 ml) Dijon mustard

1 cup (250 ml) panko

4 pieces, each 6 oz (175 g) skinless halibut fillet

3 tbsp (45 ml) canola oil

2 tbsp (30 ml) capers, drained, rinsed and patted dry

1 tbsp (15 ml) olive oil

2 small zucchini, cut on the bias into ovals or halved lengthwise and cut into half-moons

1 cup (250 ml) red and yellow cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

1 tsp (5 ml) chopped garlic

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 tbsp (30 ml) chopped Italian parsley


Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).

Make a dredging station for the fish: combine flour, chili powder and salt in a shallow bowl. Beat egg with milk and Dijon in another bowl, and place panko in the third bowl.

Dredge fish first in flour, then in egg mixture and then in panko to coat.

Heat 2 tbsp (30 ml) canola oil in a large frying pan on medium-high heat. Add fish and fry, turning, for 2 to 3 minutes or until crumbs are golden. Transfer fish to a baking sheet and bake for 7 minutes or until fish is cooked through.

Wipe out pan, add remaining 1 tbsp (15 ml) canola oil and heat on high heat. Add capers and fry for 2 to 3 min or until crispy. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain.

Add olive oil to pan over medium heat. Add zucchini and fry for 1 minute or until just beginning to soften. Add tomatoes and garlic; fry 1 minute longer or until they have begun to release juice. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with parsley and fried capers.

Serve fish over zucchini mixture, spooning some sauce over fish. Serves 4.

From Food and Drink magazine

This grilled shrimp from Martha Stewart Living is marinated in fresh herbs, jalapeno, garlic, lemon zest and olive oil. A few minutes on the grill and you have a lovely lunch or light supper. The recipe calls for jumbo shrimp, but you can use any size.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Shrimp can be treated with preservatives. Look for shrimp with only salt added.

Marinate the shrimp

Grill skewers for a few minutes on each side

Grilled Herbed Shrimp


3 tablespoons (45 ml) chopped fresh cilantro leaves

3 tablespoons (45 ml) chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

1 tablespoon (15 ml) minced jalapeno chile (from ½ jalapeno)

1 tablespoon (15 ml) minced garlic (from about 3 cloves)

1 tablespoon grated fresh lemon zest

1/3 cup (75 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

1 pound (500 g) jumbo shrimp, in shells (about 20)


Combine all ingredients except shrimp in a large resealable plastic bag. Snip through each shrimp shell down the back, leaving last segment and tail intact, and devein with a paring knife, leaving shell intact. Add shrimp to bag and massage with marinade. Refrigerate at least 8 hours or up to overnight.

Soak 10 short wooden skewers in water 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat grill for indirect heat, with coals to 1 side (or medium heat on a gas grill). Thread 2 shrimp onto each skewer and place on indirect side of grill. Cook, turning once, until shrimp are curled, slightly charred, and cooked through, about 5 minutes.

From Martha Stewart Living