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Recipes

Chef Erica’s Christmas Cookies – Three Ways

BT Montreal | posted Wednesday, Nov 29th, 2017

Basic sugar cookie recipe (makes 30-40 cookies)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 5 ¼ cups of flour (plus a little extra for dusting your surface)
  • 2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon of water

Directions:

Beat your butter and sugar together for a few minutes until they’re light and fluffy. Then add in your eggs one at a time mixing in between. Add in your vanilla and give that a final mix.

In a separate bowl mix together all of your dry ingredients. Slowly add your dry ingredients into the butter mixture adding in a little water if it seems too dry. Make sure to mix everything thoroughly so that there isn’t any dry ingredients laying at the bottom of the bowl. Then you can either split your dough into three and add in the different flavorings or chill the dough shape it and bake it at 350ºF for about 7-9 minutes.

 

Pistachio and orange cookie tree

Ingredients for the dough:

  • ⅓ of the sugar cookie dough
  • ½ cup of ground pistachios
  • The zest of about 1 small orange

For the frosting:

  • ½ cup of unsalted butter at room temperature
  • ⅓ of a container of marshmallow fluff
  • ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • green food coloring
  • various sprinkles and decorations

Directions:

Mix all the ingredients for the cookie dough together. Then wrap it in plastic wrap and chill it for about 30 minutes. After it has chilled roll out the dough on a floured surface. Then you can cut it using a set of star cookie cutters (I got mine from a craft store but you can find them at a lot of stores this time of year). Then bake your set of star cookies at 350ºF for 7-10 minutes or until they turn a light golden brown color around the edges.

While they are cooling you can get started on the buttercream. Just beat your butter for about 4-5 minutes or until it becomes pale and fluffy. Then add in your marshmallow fluff and mix for another minute. Add in your vanilla extract and the food coloring until it reaches your desired color. You can add your buttercream into a piping bag with a tip (I used a star tip) or you can just spoon it on. Assemble your tree and add some sprinkles to decorate your trees if you want.

 

Cardamom and white chocolate cookie cups

Ingredients for the dough:

  • ⅓ of your sugar cookie dough
  • 1 ½ teaspoon of cardamom

For the white chocolate mousse:

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 3 tablespoons and ½ cup of whipping cream (separated)
  • ½ cup of white chocolate

Directions:

Mix your cardamom into the dough. Push your dough up the sides of each whole in mini cupcake pan. Bake at 350ºF for 7-9 minutes or until lightly golden brown around the edges. Right after they come out of the oven press down the center while the dough is still soft to leave room for the mousse.

While they are cooling you can prepare your mousse. Start by adding your 3 tablespoons of cream into a small saucepan and put that on a medium to medium-low heat. While that is heating up (not boiling) you mix your egg yolk and your sugar together. Right before your cream boils take it off the heat and add it slowly to your egg mixture whisking constantly. Then return your mixture back to the heat and continue cooking at the same temperature until it thickens slightly (don’t stop stirring). Then when that’s done immediately put it through a sieve over your white chocolate and stir to help your chocolate melt. When all your white chocolate is completely melted set to the side to let it cool completely. Then whip up your remaining cream and fold the two mixtures together and chill for about 20-30 minutes. Then pipe or spoon the mousse into your cooled cookie cups and add decorations such as sprinkles if you desire.

 

Chocolate Cookies

Ingredients for the dough:

  • ⅓ of the sugar cookie dough you made
  • ½ cup of cocoa powder

For the royal icing:

  • ⅔ cup of powdered sugar
  • 1-3 tablespoons of warm water
  • 2 teaspoons of meringue powder (you can find this at some craft/baking stores or at some bulk stores)
  • food coloring (I use red and green but you can change that according to the design you’d like to do)

Directions:

Mix your cocoa powder into the dough and chill the for 15-20 minutes. Then roll your dough on a floured surface and cut it out (I used a circle cookie cutter which you can find just about everywhere). Then bake at 350ºF for 7-9 minutes. After your cookies finish baking let them cool.

While they are cooling you can make your royal icing. Just add the powdered sugar and meringue powder to a bowl then add a little water and stir it. Keep adding your water slowly making sure to stir vigorously in between. Once you get the consistency you’d like you can start decorating your cookies.

I started by half dipping my cookies in the white royal icing. Then I split the icing into two and dyed one half red and the other green. I place both colors into separate piping bags. I piped three red dots and two green leaves to represent holly. Let your icing dry and then serve.

Note: if you’d like to make your icing in advance make sure to properly seal your icing to ensure it doesn’t dry out.

Chef V’s Savoury Sharp Cheddar Apple and Maple Waffles

BT Montreal | posted Tuesday, Nov 21st, 2017

Waffles:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3 tbsp. sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

Apples:

  • 4 tbsp. melted butter
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups peeled and thinly sliced Gala or Macintosh apples
  • ½ cup 35% cooking cream

Directions:

  1. Waffles: warm your waffle maker.
  2. In a bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar.
  3. In a separate bowl mix together the eggs, unsalted butter, vanilla and buttermilk. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture. Lastly fold in the shredded cheese.
  4. Place the batter into your waffle maker and bake!
  5. Apples: in a saucepan warm your butter and sugar until the sugar has melted. Add in the apples and cook slowly until the apples are softened. Add in the cream and simmer for an additional 5-7 minutes until the mixture is creamy and golden.
  6. Plate the warm waffles and top with the caramelized apple mixture and maple syrup.

Chef V’s Holiday Mexican Burrito Station

BT Montreal | posted Tuesday, Nov 21st, 2017

Ingredients:

  • 12 large flour tortillas
  • 1 batch Mexican Style Eggs (see recipe below)
  • 1 avocado sliced
  • 2 limes, quartered
  • 1 cup baked beans, warmed
  • 1 batch fresh salsa (see recipe below)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese of your choice

Directions:

  1. Assemble a station with all the ingredients mentioned above. I love to have a couple of burritos prepared and have the rest made by my guests. The beauty is that this is a perfect way for both meat lovers and vegetarians to enjoy a brunch!

 

Mexican Style Eggs:

  • 12 eggs
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • ½ cup 35% cooking cream
  • 2 chorizo links, finely chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • ¼ cup parsley, finely chopped

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl crack the eggs and whisk together with cream, salt and pepper.
  2. In a large sauce pan on medium high heat warm the olive oil and cook the chorizo until it starts to brown. Then reduce the temperature to medium heat and add in the onions, peppers and the parsley. Sauté until the onions and peppers have softened. Then pour in the egg mixture. Allow it to set for 2 minutes then using your wooden spoon slowly turn the eggs in a figure 8 motion. The eggs will scramble and continue to cook to your liking (some like their eggs runny and others like them well done).
  3. Place into a casserole covered with aluminum foil and keep them warm until service.

 

Fresh Salsa:

  • 2 large tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1 large cucumber, diced
  • 1 large yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 large zucchini, diced
  • ½ red onion, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup cilantro, finely chopped
  • 2 limes, zested and juiced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl mix together the tomatoes, cucumber, pepper, zucchini, red onion, cilantro, lime zest and juice and season with salt and pepper. Let it sit and marinate, the longer the better!

Singing Chef Samantha Calabrese’s Christmas recipes

BT Montreal | posted Wednesday, Nov 15th, 2017

Stingray (la rai):

Directions:

  1. Buy stingray at your local fish market for your desired quantity of guests and have them chop it in pieces about 3 fingers wide.
  2. At home, rinse the fish pieces and let it strain in a colander.
  3. Coat each piece in flour.
  4. Put canola oil in a frying pan and fry the fish pieces till nice and golden in colour.
  5. Sprinkle with salt.
  6. Once all fish is fried. Place in a casserole.
  7. Clean the frying pan.
  8. Place 8 – 9 small to medium sized sliced onions with canola oil, in frying pan, with salt    and pepper and cover till they are wilted.

 

Stuffed artichokes:

Directions:

  1. Buy small to medium sized fresh artichokes
  2. Remove all small leaves at outer bottom of artichokes and cut the stem about ½ an inch.
  3. Cut the top of artichoke to make it flat and remove all the prickly tips.
  4. Prepare a low round pot sprinkled with salt at the bottom of pot and sliced lemon about 5 slices.
  5. Loosen artichokes with hands and open it like a flower.
  6. Pour a heaping tablespoon of the bread crumb mixture over the artichokes to make mixture drop in all the layers of the artichokes.
  7. Place the artichokes stuffed upright in this shallow pot.
  8. Drizzle olive oil over them.
  9. Fill pot halfway with water. DO NOT MAKE WATER COVER THE WHOLE ARTICHOKE.
  10. Place cover over the pot and cook for at least 45 minutes after boiling point or until stem feels soft when poked with a fork.
  11. Verify from time to time that water doesn’t totally evaporate.  Keep adding water to not burn the artichokes.
  12. When stem is soft, place on a plate and serve.

 

Preparing baked apples:

Directions:

  1. Wash Macintosh apples.
  2. Remove the stem on top with a knife creating a little well.
  3. Sprinkle cinnamon to taste
  4. Sprinkle brown sugar
  5. Drizzle some honey
  6. Place in a shallow baking  dish with an inch of water in it.
  7. Bake in the oven half hour or till apples are soft.
  8. Serve.

Andrea Buckett’s Holiday Entertaining Platters

BT Montreal | posted Wednesday, Nov 15th, 2017

Crispy Gnocchi with bacon and smoked cheddar

Ingredients:

  • 4 strips of bacon, cut into ¼” strips
  • 1 tbsp bacon fat
  • 1 package of PC Gnocchi (350grams)
  • 1 package of cherry or grape tomatoes
  • ¼ tsp ground pepper
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp. chopped chives
  • ¼ cup finely grated PC smoked cheddar

Directions:

  1. Place a heavy bottom skillet over medium heat and add bacon.  Cook until bacon is crispy, about 7 min.  Remove bacon to a paper towel to drain.  Reserve 1 tablespoon of bacon fat and discard the rest.  Wipe out the pan with a paper towel.
  2. Place the same skillet over medium heat and add reserved bacon fat.
  3. Add the gnocchi to the hot pan and stir to coat.  Allow the gnocchi to cook on one side until its brown and crispy, about 3-4 min.  Turn gnocchi over and cook the other side until brown and crispy.
  4. Add in the cherry tomatoes, pepper, salt and chives and cook for an additional 2 min or until the tomatoes are just heated through.
  5. Transfer to a serving dish and top with bacon and smoked cheddar.

 

Tamari & Walnut Pate

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 cooking onions thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
  • 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 ½ cups walnut halves
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup red wine
  • 3 tbsp Tamari
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp fresh ground pepper

Directions:

  1. In a skillet over medium low heat add the butter.  Once melted add the onions and the garlic and cook for 12-15 min. until the onions are brown and caramelized.
  2. Add the walnuts and thyme and cook for another 3 min. stirring continually.
  3. Add Dijon mustard and wine, scrape any brown bits that have accumulated on the bottom off the pan and let the wine reduce until there is only a tablespoon of liquid left in the pan. Add tamari and stir to coat the nuts, remove from heat.
  4. Pour mixture into a food processor fitted with an S-blade.  Add lemon juice and process the mixture, scrapping down the sides as needed, until you have a smooth consistency.
  5. Line 4 –  ½ cup ramekins with plastic wrap, divide the pate evenly into each and  press down firmly. Cover over with plastic wrap and transfer into the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour.  The flavours take a while to fully develop, so leaving them overnight before serving is best.

 

Okinomiyaki 

Ingredients:

  • 1 ¼ cup Burnbrae, whole egg, egg creations (Veggie & Feta variety).
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 cups of finely shredded cabbage (you could use a prepared coleslaw mix)
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • 2 tbsp canola oil

For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp hoisin sauce

Garnish:

  • Sriracha, green onions, sesame seeds

Directions:

 

  1. Whisk the eggs together in a mixing bowl with the soy sauce and sesame oil. Whisk in the all purpose flour until everything is well combined. Stir in the cabbage & onions.
  2. Heat a 12” non-stick pan over medium heat and add about a teaspoon of vegetable oil. Add all the batter and cook on one side for about 6 minutes, until it egg begins to set and is brown on the bottom.  To flip, slide the pancake out on to a large plate so uncooked side is facing up.  With your hand directly beneath the plate, place the frying pan over the top of the pancake and quickly turn the pancake back into the pan.  Cook for another 6 minutes, until the egg is cooked all the way through.
  3. Stir the mayonnaise and hoisin together in a bowl.
  4. Cut into wedges and serve with sauce on the side.
  5. Place the okinomiyaki on a plate and top with sauce.  Garnish with sesame seeds, green onions and sriracha.

 

Thai Applewood smoked chicken salad 

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 package (175 grams) Lilydale Applewood smoked chicken, minced finely
  • 1 stalk celery, trimmed and finely diced (about ½ cup)
  • 1 ½ tsp. red Thai curry paste
  • 2 tbsp. plain yogurt
  • 1 tbsp. mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp. lime zest
  • 2 tsp. lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped cilantro

Directions:

  1. Combine all of the ingredients together in a bowl and refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. Place chicken salad in a bowl on platter. Add garnishes as below and crackers, cucumbers etc…
  3. Garnishes: Finely chopped mango, crushed peanuts, thinly sliced green onions

Chef Ricardo’s Assorted Italian Appetizers

BT Montreal | posted Thursday, Nov 9th, 2017

3 choices of toppings

Blue cheese, pear and walnuts

Ingredients:

  • 3 oz (85 g) Gorgonzola cheese, softened
  • 3 tbsp (45 ml) 35% heavy cream
  • 24 pita crisps (see recipe below)
  • 1 pear, cored, cut into 24 pieces, drizzled with lemon juice
  • ½ cup (50 g) toasted walnuts

Directions:

Place the blue cheese and cream in a bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat until smooth. Spread the mixture onto the pita crisps. Top with the pear and walnuts.

 

Fig and prosciutto

Ingredients:

  • 4 figs, each cut into 6 wedges
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) honey
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) olive oil
  • ½ cup (125 ml) mascarpone cheese, softened
  • 24 pita crisps (see recipe below)
  • 6 thin prosciutto slices, each cut into 4 pieces
  • 24 arugula leaves

Directions:

In a bowl, gently toss the figs with the honey and oil. Spoon the mascarpone onto the pita crisps. Lightly season with salt and pepper. Gently fold the prosciutto and place onto the cheese. Top with the figs and arugula.

 

Deluxe mini pizzas

Ingredients:

  • 24 pita crisps (see recipe below)
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) tomato paste
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) olive oil
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) balsamic vinegar
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • 1 small garlic clove, chopped
  • 24 thin slices white mushroom
  • 24 thin slices pepperoni or dried sausage
  • 24 thin slices cocktail bocconcini cheese
  • 24 small strips green bell pepper

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the pitas on the prepared sheet. In a small bowl, combine the tomato paste, oil, vinegar, oregano and garlic. Lightly season with salt and pepper. Spread the sauce onto the pitas. Garnish with the toppings. Bake for 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.

 

Pita crisps

preparation: 20 minutes

cooking: 6 minutes

makes 2 dozen

Ingredients:

  • 2 pitas, about 7 inches (18 cm) in diameter
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  2. Split the pitas in half to obtain 4 discs. Using a round 2-inch (5 cm) cookie cutter, cut out smaller discs from the bread. Keep the trimmings for another use. Place the discs on the prepared sheet. Drizzle with the oil and season lightly with salt and pepper.
  3. Bake for 6 minutes or until they begin to brown. Let cool, then garnish with your choice of toppings (see recipes above).

Chef Ricardo’s Smoked Salmon and Cucumber Rolls

BT Montreal | posted Thursday, Nov 9th, 2017

Preparation: 30 minutes

(Makes 2 dozen)

Ingredients:

  • 3 Lebanese cucumbers
  • ½ block (125 g) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tsp seeded and chopped jalapeno pepper
  • 24 small dill fronds
  • 1 oz (30 g) smoked salmon, cut into 24 bite-sized pieces
  • Mullet roe, as desired

Directions:

  1. Using a mandoline or a vegetable peeler, thinly slice the cucumbers on two sides to obtain 24 strips. Set aside. Keep the cores for another use.
  2. In a bowl, combine the cream cheese and jalapeno. Lightly season with salt and pepper.
  3. Spread a thin layer of the cream cheese mixture onto the length of the cucumber strips. Place a dill frond at one end of each strip, letting it slightly hang over the edge. Tightly roll up the strips.
  4. Arrange the rolls upright on a serving platter. Top with the smoked salmon and, if desired, the mullet roe.

| NOTE | Mullet roe can be found at most fish shops and is an excellent alternative to caviar.

Chef V’s Autumn Meal Salad

BT Montreal | posted Wednesday, Nov 8th, 2017

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups kale, shredded
  • 3 cups baby spinach
  • 1 cup radicchio, shredded
  • 2 cups roasted pumpkin or butternut squash
  • 1 cup picked italian vegetables
  • 1 large cucumber, sliced
  • ½ cup slivered almonds
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 red onion thinly sliced
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • ½ cup cranberries
  • 1 cup blue cheese crumbles or cheese of your choice
  • 12-15 chicken and roasted pepper croquettes

Dressing:

  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 lime juice
  • 2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

Directions:

  1. Arrange all of the salad components on a large platter starting with the different lettuce and then showcasing all of the toppings.
  2. Place the croquettes on top to keep them crunch and serve family style.
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