The Copper Kettle Festival

Words and photography by Raleigh Seldon

The Copper Kettle Festival was such a great way to kick off the weekend. Here’s why:

Shiny, vintage cars! Yup, my fiancé was purring as he toured The Copper Kettle Classics Car Show.

 

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Hosted by The Thirsty Traveler, Kevin Brauch, the Copper Kettle Cook Off was the best part of the day. Chefs Rodney Bowers, owner of Toronto restaurant Hey Meatball and Chef Donna Dooher, owner of Mildred’s Temple Kitchen, led separate teams in hopes of winning best dish.

 

Our very own Dabble Chef, Corey Burgan got up-close and personal with the honourary foodies! Here he is with Rodney Bowers.

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Corey with Donna Dooher.

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Farmers and community members donated all the fresh produce for the Cook Off. The surprise ingredient both chefs had to implement into their dishes? Creemore Springs Beer of course! At the end of the competition all left-over foods were then donated the Clearview Stayner Food Bank.

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Dabble Chef: Focaccia

Dabble Chef - Bread-2

INGREDIENTS:

  • 325ml water (slightly above room temperature)
  • 1½ tbsp dry active yeast
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • ¾ cup bread flour
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1⅓ cup potatoes, mashed and cooled

Herb Mixture:

  • 1 sprig rosemary, leaves picked and chopped
  • 6 cloves roasted garlic, chopped
  • 4 sprigs thyme, leaves picked and chopped
  • ⅓ cup olive oil

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a small bowl, add water, yeast and sugar and set aside. Let the mixture rise 1-2″.
    Tip: Keep mixture in a warm area of the kitchen to speed up the process.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients and potatoes. Add in the yeast mixture.
  3. Stir mixture with hands or using a mixer with a dough hook attachment until combined. Remove from bowl and place on a floured surface. Knead for 8-10 minutes with hands or in mixer on low for 2 minutes and then at medium for an additional 10 minutes.
  4. Place in a well-oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap until the dough doubles in size.
  5. Once the dough has risen, preheat oven to 350°F. In a small bowl, mix rosemary, thyme, garlic and oil and set aside.
  6. Remove dough from bowl and punch it until it is deflated. Portion the dough into balls that are approximately the size of a fist. Once portioned, roll into long strips. Using 3 strips, pinch one end of each log together and braid strips. Pinch the ends together and then combine the two ends of the dough to create a circle. Repeat with all strips.
  7. Spray or oil a medium sized muffin tin. Place each ball into the muffin tin. With a pastry brush, generously brush herb mixture onto balls. Cover and let rise for 10 minutes.
  8. Remove plastic and bake for 10-15 minutes, until golden brown. Sprinkle a pinch of sea salt on each bun and a little more oil once they are removed from the oven.

Tip: To enhance flavour, cook herbs in olive oil. In a small sauté pan, heat up olive oil, rosemary and thyme on low-medium heat. Remove from heat as soon as you can smell the essence. Let cool and then brush on dough.

 

Dabble Chef: fish tacos

Dabble Chef - Tilapia

INGREDIENTS:

AVOCADO MIX:

  • 2 avocados, diced
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 8 sprigs of cilantro, picked, washed and chopped finely
  • Salt and pepper

CABBAGE MIX:

  • Julienne:
  • 1 carrot, peeled
  • 2 cups green or purple cabbage
  • 1 red onion, peeled

TILAPIA:

  • 4 filets of tilapia
  • Olive oil
  • 12 x 6” corn tortillas
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a medium sized bowl, combine avocados, 1 juiced lime and ⅓ of the cilantro. Mash the avocado leaving some chunks. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Place in fridge.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the carrots, cabbage, onion, the remaining cilantro and one juiced lime. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Mix well and set aside.
  3. Place tilapia on a plate and season with salt and pepper on both sides. In a large skillet or non-stick pan heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Sear tilapia on both sides for about 4-5 minutes per side.
  4. Tortillas: Place corn tortillas on a plate and cover with a napkin. Heat in the microwave for 15-20 seconds to warm through. For soft, flavourful tacos, heat tortillas by warming them in a pan with hot olive oil.
  5. Select a tortilla and spread the avocado mixture down the centre. Add the slaw mixture and then crumble the tilapia over top. Garnish with a lime wedge and enjoy. Add salsa if you prefer.

Dabble Savvy: Tilapia is a delicate white fish so use a spatula instead of tongs to turn.

Lemon, Butter and Sugar Crêpes

Recipe by Chef Cat Cora.

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For Crêpes (makes 10 – 12)

INGREDIENTS:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg, beaten
1 cup milk
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted for brushing crêpe pan or skillet

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat the oven to 250 F.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, egg and milk until smooth. Place a 6-inch nonstick crêpe pan, a heavy skillet, or a griddle over medium-high heat. (A nonstick pan is easiest.) Brush the pan lightly with the butter and wipe out any excess with a paper towel.

Pour in just enough batter (less than ¼ cup) to cover the bottom of the pan. Holding the pan by the handle, tilt it so the bat ter runs across the bottom and covers the entire base of the pan. After about 1 minute, the crêpe w ill turn golden brown and the edges will crisp and pull away from the pan. Then, turn the crêpe over and cook for 30 seconds, until the second side is lightly browned. Remove the crêpe from the pan and place on an ovenproof plate to cool. As the crêpes cool, you can form a stack and keep them warm in the oven. Repeat with the remaining melted butter and batter.

Serve immediately, or store in the freezer by placing sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap between crêpes, then wrap the entire batch in plastic wrap.

Finishing Touches

INGREDIENTS:
10-12 crêpes
2 tbsp unsalted butter
5-6 fresh lemons, cut in half
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar (optional)
20 strawberries, sliced (optional)

DIRECTIONS:
Reheat the crêpes one at a time in a large nonstick skillet. When the crêpe is hot, put ½ teaspoon of butter on a knife and gently rub over the surface.

Squeeze juice from half a lemon over the crêpe, sprinkle 1 teaspoon of sugar sparingly over the juice, then fold the crêpe in half, and in half again to form a quarter circle.

If you like, dust a little confectioners’ sugar on the top and garnish with a few fresh strawberry slices.

Serves 4-6
For more recipes by Chef Cat Cora, check out her book – Cooking from the Hip.

Dabble Chef: tilapia

Dabble Chef - Tilapia-1

Tilapia Marinade

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 tilapia
  • 3 lemons
  • 3 limes
  • 1 bunch of fresh cilantro
  • 12-15 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 tbsp olive oil

PREPARATION:

  • Cut citrus in half widthwise and squeeze juice into a small bowl. Pour juice into a strainer to collect seeds.
  • Dabble Savvy: Roll lemons and limes with the palm of your hand against the countertop. It makes them easier to squeeze.
  • Chop the garlic finely. Wash the cilantro, clip the leaves and chop finely.

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a medium mixing bowl combine the oil, garlic, paprika, cilantro and citrus juice. Whisk thoroughly. Place tilapia in a small bowl and pour marinade over the fish. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and rest in the fridge for 3-6 hours before cooking.
  2. Preheat grill to high or pre-heat oven to 375˚.
  3. Grilling Instructions: Place tilapia on the grill. Make sure the fish has no excess oil or it may create a flame that will give it a burnt flavour. Grill the tilapia for 6-7 minutes flipping half way through. Remove from grill, slice evenly and serve immediately.
  4. Oven instructions: Place fish on a baking sheet lined with parchment or silicon. Place in oven and cook for 10-15 minutes or until fully cooked.

Baked Eggs with Bacon

Recipe by Chef Marc Matsumoto

Baked Eggs

INGREDIENTS:
2 slices thick cut bacon
1 shallot, minced
2 tbsp parsley, chopped
5 ramps, bulbs minced, leaves chopped
1 1/2 cups stewed tomatoes, chopped
salt and pepper
honey (optional)
2-3 eggs
ricotta insalata

OPTIONAL:
parsley
basil
chives
scallions
ramp leaves

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat broiler. Move oven rack to the top position.

For tomato sauce, place bacon on oven-safe pan and fry over medium heat until some oil renders out. Add minced shallots and ramp bulbs, sauté until soft and fragrant. Add chopped parsley and ramp leaves; cook until they are just wilted. Add tomatoes, then salt and pepper to taste. If sauce is too tart, add honey to sweeten slightly.

Use a spoon to make 2-3 wells in the tomato sauce and drop an egg into each well. Crumble cheese on top and bring the sauce to a boil. When the bottoms of the eggs start to turn white, transfer the pan to the oven. Broil directly under the heating element for about 1 minute, or until the cheese is browned and the eggs have turned white on top.

Quickly garnish baked eggs with parsley, basil, chives, scallions, or ramp leaves. Serve on toasted bread.

Serves 2-3

Profile: Chef Kerry Sear

Chef Kerry

The French know fashion. New Yorkers know attitude. And, it’s fair to say, no one knows the culinary capabilities of the Pacific Northwest quite like Chef Kerry Sear.

Kerry merged his culinary experiences in Seattle with time spent cooking abroad to create a market-driven menu for ART Restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel where he’s the executive chef.

With a passion for design, Chef Kerry has been known to sketch out his culinary creations beforehand with a brush on canvas. Lending ART his design expertise, he influenced everything from menu selection to the hues of wood on the walls and tables.

A Day with Chef Kerry Sear:

BREAKFAST – Apple French Toast

LUNCH – Baked Beecher’s Cheese Sandwich, Applesauce and Apple Fries

DINNER – Salmon Stuffed Baked Potato and Apple Cider Peas

 

Read the full article: Issue 1 – A Day with Chef Kerry Sear.

Dabble Chef: seared tuna

Photography by Simon Burn

Photography by Simon Burn

Spicy Mayo

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 tbsp Sambal sauce (chili sauce)
  • ½ cup mayonnaise

DIRECTIONS:
Mix ingredients together in a small mixing bowl. Set in fridge until serving.

Sesame Crusted Tuna

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 pieces sushi grade tuna
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup onions, julienne
  • 1 cup red peppers, julienne
  • 1 cup green peppers, julienne
  • 1 cup celery, julienne
  • 1 cup carrots, julienne
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 orange, zest and juice
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh ginger
  • 2 tbsp sesame seed oil
  • 1 baby bok choy, washed and julienne
  • 1 cup of black or white sesame seeds
  • ½ cup cilantro, washed and chopped

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Season tuna with salt and pepper.
  2. Pour the sesame seeds on a plate and roll the tuna edges in the seeds, making sure to cover all sides. If seeds are not sticking, cover the tuna with a tablespoon of olive oil before rolling.
  3. Ina large sauté pan, heat the olive oil until it reaches its smoking point and then add tuna.
  4. Sear the tuna for approximately 2 minutes on each side and remove from pan. Set the tuna on a plate with a paper towel.
  5. Return the pan to the heat. Add onions, peppers, celery and carrots, then sauté for 5 minutes.
  6. Add garlic, orange zest and juice, ginger and sesame oil, continually stirring. Remove the pan from the heat and add bok choy.
  7. Slice tuna on a bias (4-5 pieces per serving). Plate the vegetables and fan tuna pieces on top. Pour the remaining liquid from the vegetables over the tuna and add a generous dollop of spicy mayo. Garnish with cilantro and serve.

Tip: Wash the bok choy thoroughly to remove any grit.

A Day with: Aaron McCargo Jr.

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New Jersey raised Chef, Aaron McCargo Jr. is the season four winner of The Next Food Network Star. Now, with a show of his own, the Big Daddy’s House star can also boast his own brand of herbs and spices as well as a cookbook, Simply Done, Well Done.

Here are three of Aaron’s flavourful recipes. Trust us, you’ll want seconds.

Breakfast: Gruyère Cheese Omelet

A Day with Aaron McCargo Jr

  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup Gruyère cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped
  • 8 slices bacon, cooked until crispy and then crumbled
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves, whole or julienned
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Ina medium bowl, vigorously beat eggs with the salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes for 4 to 5 minutes, until frothy.
  3. In another medium bowl, stir together the cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, bacon and basil.
  4. Ina 12″ ovenproof skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the beaten eggs and cook gently, tilting the pan so the uncooked egg slides under the cooked parts. In 2 to 3 minutes, the eggs will begin to set. Sprinkle the cheese mixture evenly over eggs and remove pan from heat.
  5. Transfer the pan to the oven and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until the cheese melts. Slide the omelet onto a serving platter, folding it over onto itself as you do. Let the omelet sit for 1-2 minutes, and then cut and serve.

Serves 3

Lunch: Spicy Cheeseburger Soup

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  • 1 cup potato, peeled and diced (1 medium all-purpose potato)
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 2 lb ground beef
  • 1 cup onion, finely diced
  • ½ cup green bell pepper, diced
  • ½ cup red bell pepper, diced
  • ½ cup jalapeno chili pepper, diced
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp Italian herb blend*
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 ½ quarts beef broth
  • ¼ cup beef bouillon powder
  • 1 ½ lb white American cheese, thickly sliced
  • ¼ cup scallions, chopped (white and green parts)
  1. In a large saucepan, put the potatoes and enough water to cover them by about 2″.
  2. Bring to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, until fork-tender, about 15 minutes.
  3. Drain and return to the pain. Cover and keep warm.
  4. In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. When hot, add the beef and cook, breaking up the meat slightly with a wooden spoon, until the beef begins to brown, 6 to 10 minutes.
  5. Add the onion and bell peppers and cook, stirring, for another minute or two. Add the jalapenos and then the flour, herb blend, salt, and black pepper. Cook, stirring, until well mixed and thickened, 3 to 4 minutes.
  6. Add the broth and bouillon powder, lower the heat to medium, and cook, stirring, until heated through, taking care not to break the meat up too much.
  7. Remove the pan from the heat, add the slices of cheese, one at a time, and stir gently until the cheese melts into the soup and the soup becomes creamy. Add the scallions and potatoes and cook just until heated through. Serve hot.

Serves 12

Dinner: Stuffed Grilled Boneless Pork Chops

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  • 1 cup orange marmalade
  • ¼ cup scallions, chopped (white and green parts)
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup spicy chile oil
  • 9 oz fresh baby spinach
  • 6 slices hickory smoked bacon, cooked and coarsely chopped (about ½ cup)
  • 6 oz smoked Gouda cheese, cut into small cubes
  • 1 tbsp chipotle chile peppers in adobo sauce, chopped
  • 6x 8-ounce boneless pork loin chops
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  1. In a small bowl, stir together the marmalade, scallions, soy sauce and chile oil. Set half the marmalade sauce aside for cooking and the other half for serving.
  2. Prepare a hot fire in a charcoal or gas grill and oil the grates.
  3. In a large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, bring an inch of water to a simmer over medium-high heat. Steam the spinach in a steaming basket and set in the saucepan until wilted, about 2 ½ minutes. Lift the spinach from the steaming basket and transfer to a large bowl. Add the bacon, cheese and chipotle chilies. Mix well.
  4. With a small, sharp knife, slit the side of each chop to create a pocket that goes nearly (but not all the way) through the chop. Wiggle the knife in the incision to open the pocket.
  5. Using a spoon or your fingers, stuff each chop with the spinach filling. Secure the opening with toothpicks and then season the chops with salt and pepper. Brush both sides of the chops with canola oil.
  6. Grill the chops for 6 to 8 minutes with the grill covered, turning the chops 3 times during grilling. Remove the lid and brush the tops of the chops with the marmalade sauce for cooking. Continue grilling, turning once and brushing the other side with the marmalade sauce for cooking, until both sides of each chop are nicely browned and cooked through, 2 to 4 minutes longer.
  7. Remove the chops from the grill and let them rest for 10 minutes before serving with the reserved sauce.

Serves 6

 

Italian Herb Blend

Recipe and Photo Courtesy Chef Aaron McCargo Jr.

Spicy Cheeseburger Soup

See issue 14 for Aaron’s Spicy Cheeseburger Soup recipe
Photo courtesy Chef Aaron McCargo Jr.

 

ITALIAN HERB BLEND
1 tbsp Dried Basil
1 tbsp Dried Oregano
1 tbsp Salt
2 tsp Dried Thyme
2 tsp Dried Marjoram
1 tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper

In a small bowl, stir together the basil, oregano, salt, thyme, marjoram and pepper Store the seasoning in a lidded glass container or zipped plastic bag in a cool, dark place for up to 1 month.

Makes about ½ cup

Salmon Stuffed Baked Potato and Apple Cider Peas

Recipe by Chef Kerry Sear

BLD_KerrySear - Dinner

INGREDIENTS:
4 4oz fillets of salmon (skin off )
4 Russet potatoes
4 tbsp butter
1/2 cup apple cider
2 cups peas
salt and pepper

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 350°F.

Wrap Russet potatoes in foil and place in oven for approximately 40 minutes or until done.

Season salmon fillets with salt and pepper. In a medium sauté pan, sear salmon on both sides.

With a knife, partially cut the cooked Russet potato down the middle, lengthwise. Scoop out a little of the potato inside. Place the salmon fillet inside the potato and cover the salmon with the potato that was scooped out. Pat with 1 tablespoon of butter on each potato. Reform the potato into shape. Place potato in oven for approximately 15 minutes or until salmon is cooked to desired temperature.

Heat the apple cider in a small saucepan. Add peas. Cook until peas are done. Season with salt and pepper.

To serve, take the potato out of the oven, cut in half to show salmon and serve with peas.

Serves 4

Shakin’ Shakshuka

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When I booked my fare to Israel the very last thing I envisioned was cooking a meal or funnier still, finding myself in front of a hot stove!  But Tel Aviv is full of surprises. Dr. Shakshuka is a culinary treasure in a country where there are so many fabulous meals to be sampled. This was my first taste of the classic egg-based dish and certainly, my first time cooking it – although I had some help from the doctor himself.

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If you’re planning a trip to Israel then this has to be a stop. Travel plans or not, the recipe is simple and satisfying:

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Shakshuka Recipe
Courtesy Shai Deluca

INGREDIENTS
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1/2 medium brown or white onion, peeled and diced
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• 1 medium green or red bell pepper, chopped
• 4 cups ripe diced tomatoes, or 2 cans (14 oz. each) diced tomatoes
• 2 tbsp tomato paste
• 1 tsp chili powder (mild)
• 1 tsp cumin
• 1 tsp paprika
• Pinch of cayenne pepper (or more to taste– spicy!)
• Pinch of sugar (optional, to taste)
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 5-6 eggs
• 1/2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley (optional, for garnish)

DIRECTIONS
1. Heat a deep, large skillet or sauté pan on medium. Slowly warm olive oil in the pan. Add chopped onion, sauté for a few minutes until the onion begins to soften. Add garlic and continue to sauté till mixture is fragrant.

2. Add the bell pepper, sauté for 5-7 minutes over medium until softened.

3. Add tomatoes and tomato paste to pan, stir till blended. Add spices and sugar, stir well, and allow mixture to simmer over medium heat for 5-7 minutes till it starts to reduce. At this point, you can taste the mixture and spice it according to your preferences. Add salt and pepper to taste, more sugar for a sweeter sauce, or more cayenne pepper for a spicier shakshuka (be careful with the cayenne… it is extremely spicy!).

4. Crack the eggs, one at a time, directly over the tomato mixture, making sure to space them evenly over the sauce. I usually place 4-5 eggs around the outer edge and 1 in the center. The eggs will cook “over easy” style on top of the tomato sauce.

5. Cover the pan. Allow mixture to simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until the eggs are cooked and the sauce has slightly reduced. Keep an eye on the skillet to make sure that the sauce doesn’t reduce too much, which can lead to burning.

6. Garnish with the chopped parsley, if desired. Shakshuka can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. For breakfast, serve with warm crusty bread or pita that can be dipped into the sauce (if you’re gluten-intolerant or celebrating Passover, skip the bread). For dinner, serve with a green side salad for a light, easy meal.