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Brown Bagging it in Banff

8 Nov

Just back from Banff Mountain Festival and days watching amazing films documenting extreme sports and hidden cultures from far away places.

It’s a great tradition… watching films back-to-back at the wonderful Banff Centre.

But each year, I forget how crummy the brown bag sandwiches are, and kick myself for not planning ahead.

We would have killed for a healthy, hearty sammich with these famous cookies from Evelyn’s Coffee Bar, recipe at bottom. Evelyn’s super yummy Health Sandwich of avocado, hummous, mayo, tomato, cucumber and sprouts on healthy bread would likely never survive the trip from town!

We were madly craving a ham, brie, tomato and Dijon on baguette. But also thinking of a pretzel bun with Gruyere and Swiss salami — a little old school mountain mouthful.

Then we started thinking about chicken salad, and not just any chicken salad. What about a GORP/trail mix-infused recipe, with raisins, dried cranberries and nuts? With celery bits and mayo/apple cider vinegar, and honey to bind it together, it would be yummy.

But we’ve been hoarding this for years, and we’re thinking a curry chicken salad would have done the trick. And it looks like it would feed a few friends!

OPRAH’S FAVOURITE: MARGAUX’S CURRIED CHICKEN SANDWICH
(this looks like a lot of dressing, so we are going to add only enough to bind. Will report back!)
20 whole black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
2 whole cloves
1/2 lemon
3 pounds medium chicken tenders
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
1/2 cup honey
1 1/4 teaspoons curry powder
3/4 teaspoon lemon pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
Butter for spreading
1 loaf challah or other rich egg bread, cut into 12 thick slices
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup slivered almonds
2 medium tomatoes , chopped
1 bag (about 5 ounces) mesclun salad greens
Red grapes and assorted berries for garnish

In a large saucepan over high heat, add peppercorns, bay leaves, cloves, lemon and 14 cups water; cover and bring to a boil. Add chicken and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, 7 to 10 minutes, or until cooked through; drain. Once cool, quarter each tender crosswise.

In a large bowl, combine mustard, honey, curry powder, lemon pepper and salt; stir in chicken. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes, or up to 1 day.

Butter both sides of bread slices. In a heated nonstick skillet over medium-high flame, cook bread in batches 3 to 5 minutes or until browned, turning once.

Combine carrots and almonds with chicken mixture. Divide chicken curry among 6 bread slices. Top with tomatoes, mesclun and remaining bread slices. Serve with fruit.
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CRANBERRY OATMEAL COOKIES

These are Evelyn Zabloski’s cookies from her old Banff coffee shops. A classic mountain treat.

3/4 cup all purpose flour (or half whole wheat and half all purpose)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 granulated sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups oats
3/4 cup dried cranberries (or blueberries)

In a medium bowl, combine flour, spices, baking powder.
In a large bowl, cream together butter, brown sugar and granulated sugars. Beat in egg and vanilla Stir in flour mixture just until blended.
Stir in rolled oats and cranberries.
Shape mixture into 16 balls and flatten slightly on baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
Bake in a preheated 350 oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until cookies are slightly browned and hold their shape. Cook on racks.

In like a lion, and into our tummy

10 Mar

Ann Lander's World Famous Meatloaf Recipe

MARCH IS A month at war with itself. Cold, windy evenings eventually give way to promising sunny, spring days only to blow back into blustery darkness.

March is, therefore, the perfect month for meatloaf.

Old-fashioned, warm and comforting dinners transform into hipster-friendly cold sandwiches for lunch the next day. See? Conflict resolution, people.

We were raised on our grandmother’s onion soup staple, and a sweeter, jammy ketchup and bacon-topped home variety.

As teenhood advanced, our household turned to adding oatbran or oatmeal and grated carrot and squash, which turned meatloaf into something entirely different — a little something we liked to call child abuse.

But seriously, our love of this dual dinner-to-lunch staple will never fade.

We flirted with a white wine and lemon scented New York Times version, and an allspice number with a ketchup, brown mustard and steak sauce pan gravy. We love the kitsch of our friend R’s cheeseburger rollup style: a diner-esque jelly roll stuffed with shredded cheddar and grilled onion, topped with mustard and ketchup, and served with cold dill pickles. A classic from L.A.’s The Ivy. And there’s this Pioneer Woman bacon-wrapped goodness.

But we want something that tries a little less, just like us. Because, people – this is meatloaf, not chateaubriand.

We are simply mad for the lashings of red pepper jelly served atop Diner Deluxe’s veal meatloaf alongside Dijon mashed potatoes and Avenue Diner’s AAA beef meatloaf served open-faced on savoury bread pudding.


DINER DELUXE MEATLOAF

Recipe by Dwayne Ennest

1.2 kg ground veal
1.2 kg ground beef
4 eggs
1 cup diced carrots, roasted
1 cup diced parsnips, roasted
1/4 cup diced green onions
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tbsp HP Sauce
1/2 tsp each: garlic powder, ground cumin, ground coriander, mustard powder, Worchester sauce
2 tbsp hot sauce
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 450°F. Mix all ingredients together. Cook a small piece of the mixture on the stovetop to taste and check seasonings.

Place the mixture in two or three loafpans and bake until internal temperature is 120°F, approximately two hours.

Red Pepper Jelly

2 cups pureed roasted red bell peppers
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1/2 tbsp red chili flakes and Tabasco sauce each
salt, pepper
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup water

Mix all ingredients, except for cornstarch and water, in a stainless steel pot; bring to a boil. Mix the starch and water and stir into the jelly. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer over medium low heat for two hours until it is thick and jammy with a shiny bright colour. Cool and refrigerate in airtight container. Keeps two weeks and can be frozen. Makes four cups.

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ROSEMARY-APPLE MEATLOAF
1 lb ground beef
1 egg
1 onion, shredded
1 cup shredded apples
3/4 cup bread crumbs
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon Montreal seasoning
3 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl and with a gentle hand, mix together all ingredients EXCEPT the olive oil. Add some additional breadcrumbs if the mixture seems wet. Mold into a loaf and place in a standard loaf pan. Spread the olive oil over the top of the loaf (this keeps the moisture locked in) and place in the oven. Bake for about 40 minutes or until cooked through and the juices run clear. Allow to sit 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

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CATHI’S ‘SORRY IT’S SOLD OUT’ MEATLOAF

with herb wine jelly

1.25 kg lean ground beef
1 cup onions, finely minced
1 tbsp garlic, minced
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1/2 cup bread crumbs
3 eggs
salt, pepper
3 tbsp combined chopped fresh basil, tarragon, oregano, thyme

Combine all ingredients and pat into a 20 cm  by 10 sprayed pan.

Bake at 325°F for 30 to 45 minutes.

herb wine jelly

1 cup chopped mixed fresh herbs: rosemary, basil, tarragon, oregano
1 cup boiling water
1 1/2 cups red wine
4 cups sugar
1 bottle of Certo

Combine herbs with boiling water and let steep for one minute. Transfer herbs and water to a saucepan. Add wine and sugar and boil for one minute.

Add Certo and remove from heat. Continue to stir well for several minues, straining any foam from surface.

Pour into sterilized jars leaving 1 cm at top and seal.

Makes 6 one cup jars.

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UPDATE!
BILL BLASS’S MEATLOAF

2 lbs ground sirloin
1/2 lb ground veal
1/2 ground pork
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups soft bread crumbs
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
pinch dried thyme
pinch dried marjoram
1 bottle Heinz chili sauce
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

In large mixing bowl gently combine ground sirloin, veal and pork; set aside.
In a medium sauté pan, melt butter over medium high heat. Add celery and onions and sauté until soft, about 10 minutes. Add sautéed celery and onions and all remaining ingredients except chili sauce to meat mixture.
Combine well and form into a loaf. Place loaf in a baking dish and top with chili sauce.
Bake 1 hour in a preheated 350° oven.