HELPING FAMILY FARMS FLOURISH. HELPING FEED THE HUNGRY.

Friday, December 6, 2013

B'Soffener Kapuziner, an Austrian Family favourite nut-based cake, liberally doused with Gluhwein from the Stracey Family Cookbook


         When I was growing up in Montreal, my family had an endless stream of visitors, most of whom had some connection to my parent’s time in Britain during the Second World War.  They were both volunteers—my father was a Major in the Canadian Army and my mother worked tirelessly at the American Red Cross in London.  One of our visitors was a young man, my godmother’s nephew, who arrived in Montreal to study Engineering at McGill.   He ended moving in with us and became very much a part of our family.  He stayed in Canada after graduation and married a lovely girl from Austria. They had two daughters, and among other things, opened a restaurant called "Le Carafon". After years in Montreal, Simon returned to England and assumed his hereditary title as the baronet Stracey;  He became Sir John and his wife Lady Martha, who is referred to as her ladyship in the following post.  You may remember Lady Martha from last year’s spectacularly successful post on Austrian Cookies.  It has been downloaded over 2000 times.  Here’s the link:  http://www.chewingthefat.us.com/2011/12/three-authentic-austrian-cookie-recipes.html.  This year, Simon promised me another authentic family recipe and he has made good on his offer. Here’s the story of B’Soffener Kapunziner and if it is as good as everything else her ladyship bakes, you should add it to your Christmas repertoire. By the way, you may not know it, but my family always called me Dick.  My first name is, after all, Richard.  “Chimo”, in case you wonder, is a greeting from the Inukitut language, spoken by the Inuits, as Canada's Eskimos are now called. 

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Diver Scallops with Monte's Ham Original Glaze and a Special Holiday Offer to You.



        
As you know, I own a ham company that makes an all-natural ham that I am extremely proud of.  And along with the ham comes the glaze that I created years ago when I baked my first ham.  Monte’s Ham Original Glaze is a luscious mixture of real Dijon Mustard, Organic Brown Sugar and Seville Orange Marmalade along with a top-secret spice blend.  For all of those who, no matter what the reason, cannot, will not or do not eat Ham, I’d highly recommend the glaze. And if you stick with me, there’s a special offer at the end of this post that I hope will tempt you to try it.  The glaze is terrific on carrots, great on salmon or ribs and a must-have with my ham.  It also turned out to be a terrific pairing with some large Diver Scallops I saw in the market. And it took so little time to prepare, it qualifies as an ideal under 30 minute weeknight meal. 

Monday, December 2, 2013

Spicy (Rotisserie) Chicken Soup from Bon Appetit



         Let’s face it: this time of year begs for recipes that you can get on the table in no time. This wonderful soup takes all of 15 minutes to make and it’s a perfect warmer for a winter night.  With a tossed green salad and some crusty French bread, it’s an ideal supper any day of the week.  Leave out the bread, and it's a gluten-free dinner!  The timesaver here is, of course, the rotisserie chicken.  I find the ones at Costco irresistible.  At under $5.00, they’re a bargain that’s as tasty as any home made chicken.  And there’s a lot of meat on these birds—so much so that you may find the quantity of chicken in the original Bon Appetit recipe, 4 cups, is happily met by using just the breasts.  The rest of the chicken can sit in the fridge and used for chicken sandwiches for lunch.  You can use any kind of mushrooms but shiitakes and creminis will up the flavor more than white button mushrooms.  The ginger slices ramp up the taste. If you’re not mad for spice, keep tasting as you add the cayenne pepper, it’s what gives the soup its name.  A word to the wise about the spinach:  Put a half cup of baby spinach leaves in the bottom of each soup bowl and pour the hot soup over it.  It will cook right up in the bowl and add a jolt of green to the proceedings.  Here’s the recipe: