Monday, February 13, 2012

Black-Ale Marinated Spatchcocked Chicken

Black-Ale Marinated Spatchcocked Chicken


  • 1 TBS paprika
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper, ground
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup EVOO
  • 1 large whole roasting chicken, approx. 5lbs
  • 1/3 cup course ground mustard
  • 3 cup dark or black ale
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 large onion, diced
Cooking Instructions
  1. Wash and pat dry:
    • 1 large whole roasting chicken, approx. 5lbs
  2. If the giblet and neck are in the chicken cavity, remove them and reserve for another use or discard.
  3. Place the chicken, breast side down, on a cutting board.
  4. Using poultry shears or a large, sharp knife, cut along each side of the backbone.
  5. Pull the chicken open slightly to cut the backbone out completely. Reserve for stock or discard.
  6. Turn the chicken breast side up and open it as flat as possible.
  7. Press down firmly to break the breastbone and flatten the bird.
  8. Rinse the chicken and pat it dry with paper towels.
  9. In a large container that can hold the butterflied chicken whisk together:
    • 1 large onion, diced
    • 6 garlic cloves, crushed
    • 1/3 cup coarse ground mustard
    • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    • 3 cup dark or black ale
    • 1 TBS paprika
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp black pepper, ground
  10. Place butterflied chicken in to the marinade and coat both sides.
  11. Cover and refrigerate 5-6 hours, flipping chicken over to marinate evenly.
  12. Remove chicken from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior to roasting.
  13. Preheat oven to 425ºF and place chicken in a large cast-iron skillet, breast side up.
  14. Roast chicken for 45 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh away from the bone registers 170º-175ºF. If chicken starts to burn, loosely cover with a sheet of aluminum foil.
  15. Remove from oven and let chicken sit for 5-7 minutes, then serve.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Cheesy Baked Egg Bread Bowls

Cheesy Baked Egg Bread Bowls 
8 crusty dinner rolls
8 large eggs
1/4 cup chopped mixed herbs, such as parsley, chives and tarragon
2 tablespoons heavy cream Salt and pepper
4 tablespoons grated Parmesan
Cooking Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Slice off top of each dinner roll and gently remove some bread until there is a hole large enough to accommodate an egg. Arrange rolls on a rimmed baking sheet. Reserve tops.
2. Crack an egg into each roll, then top with some herbs and a bit of cream. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with Parmesan.
3. Bake until eggs are set and bread is toasted, 20 to 25 minutes. After eggs have cooked for 20 minutes, place bread tops on baking sheet and bake until golden brown. Let sit 5 minutes. Place tops on rolls and serve warm.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Dine-Out Vancouver: Edible Canada

Have you got game? I don't, not really, but Edible Canada sure does. They also have their own herb garden growing around their patio and even - you would never guess - electric car chargers. I know, right? Edible Canada is an interesting concept because the bistro is only a part of a whole. In addition to a bistro, Edible Canada also has a retail store within their establishment, demonstrations and tours guided by chefs and special food related events. To learn more, check out their website here. Anyway. Game, which was what brought us here in the first place. B has always wanted to try more 'exotic' meats, and when I saw rabbit, elk, and cornish hen on Edible Canada's dine-out menu, I knew we had to go.

Right when you walk into the bistro, you are welcomed by the sight of a busy, but clean, open kitchen. I love that, watching the chefs at work. Aside from that, the place is dimly lit, mostly by candle light, which gives off a nice warm and inviting feeling. The server gave us a couple minutes to review our menu`s, but we already knew in advance what we wanted - heh. B started with the Fraser Canyon Rabbit Terrine - of course - and then had the Wild Mushroom Crusted Wild Albacore Tuna Salad to follow. As much as I wanted the rabbit as well, I did not want to pick the same thing as him like I did at Five Sails, so I opted for the Warm Frisee Salad and the Ginger Honey Glazed Cornish Hen. There was only one choice for dessert and that was the Petit Fours.

The Rabbit Terrine was really good. So good that B almost didn`t want to share. The Terrine itself was creamy while retaining a bit of texture, and full of flavour, like what a pate should be. The potato bread that it was served with was warm, soft, and had a nice crust. There were also a nice assortment of pickled vegetables which brought more depth to the dish. My warm Frisee Salad was also very good, albeit being cold instead of warm. The body of the salad was made up of frisee (go figure), which had a mildy bitter taste that went pleasantly with the sherry vinaigrette. Thrown in were bits of smoked bacon, and croutons. When you pair the tangy vinaigrette with the smokey bacon, you get such an explosion of flavour - I don`t even know how to put it into words.

I think this salad was the best part of my meal because my cornish hen on the other hand didn`t really meet my expectations. It was supposed to be a ginger honey glazed hen, but all I could taste was the honey. In fact, the honey basically took over the whole dish - everything the hen was touching tasted sweet. Fortunately, there were also a few cherry tomatoes on the side and that acidity helped cut down on the sweet. Aside from that, my hen was also unevenly cooked - one was moist and perfectly done, and the other one was over cooked and dry. The gratin that was also served with the hen was delicious by itself, but definitely way too heavy for me as a side for this dish. I was only able to eat 1/4 of my gratin before I had to stop - not because I was full but because it was so heavy and creamy.  B's Albacore Tuna on the other hand, was just as good as his appetizer. His tuna came beautifully seared on the outside and sitting on a bed of mushrooms and potatoes and squash. From what I tasted, it was delicious. Once again, like always, B's food tastes better than mine.

Fortunately, B and I both had the same dessert, so he had no chance to taunt me with how good his food is compared to mine. The petite four selection was an Okanagan Pear Gelee, Vanilla Salted Thomas Haas Chocolate Brownie, and a Maple Bourbon Toffee Pudding. There was also an apricot on the plate, as well as a smear of a strawberry or raspberry sauce. The Gelee and pudding was a just bit too sweet for my palate. You can however, really taste the fruit in the Gelee and it had a nice texture to it. My favourite out of the three was definitely the brownie - maybe because the salt added a nice contrast to the sweetness, or maybe because it had something to do with Thomas Haas. Hey, maybe it was both. I just really liked it and maybe I'll start baking my brownies with salt as well.

At the end of our meal, we were also presented with complimentary Bacon Sea Salt. Bacon. Salt. Bacon. Salt. Bacon. That's all I need to say.

Edible Canada at the Market on Urbanspoon

Delicious Steamed Clams

By the darkchef I found it on Tumblr

Red Curry, Coconut, Garlic, and Ginger Infused Steamed Clams
2 tablespoons butter
3 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
3 teaspoons red curry paste
2 teaspoons fish sauce1 cup chicken broth
1 cup coconut milk 2 pounds of clams (Littlenecks or Manilla), rinsed and cleaned
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
optional 1 small lime cut into wedges

Cooking Instructions
Melt the butter in a medium pot over medium heat.
Add the garlic and ginger. Cook for 2-3 minutes until garlic is fragrant but not burnt.
Add the red curry paste and the fish sauce.
Stir the paste until it has thinned out with the butter.
Pour the chicken broth and coconut milk into the pot.
Stir the broth mixture for a couple seconds until well mixed.
Add the clams and cook covered for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until clams have opened. Discard any clams that are still closed.
Add the parsley and give the pot a quick stir.
Transfer clams and broth to a large serving bowl and squeeze a tablespoon of fresh lime juice over the dish.
Serve additional lime wedges on the site.Enjoy!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Dine-Out Vancouver: Five Sails

Walls of glass opens up the restaurant to one of Vancouver's most iconic landscapes. Tables were adorned with candles and a petite vase carrying a single rose. It was warm. It was inviting. It was like a scene straight out of the movies.

After settling down and spending a few minutes gazing into each other eyes (I'm joking), we ordered. From the several options in the set menu, I ordered the Lobster Bisque "Cappucino" to start, the Grilled "Prime" New York Steak as the main, and the fresh fruit Pavlova to finish. Likewise, B started with the Lobster Bisque but then chose the Duo of Butter Poached 1/2 Lobster and the Phyllo Pastry with Lemon Cream as the dessert.

Before our appetizers arrived we were pleasantly surprised to receive a complimentary pre-appetizer of not only two kinds of bread (a fruit loaf and ciabatta), but Beef Carpaccio! The Carpaccio was delicious. Absolutely delicious. Buttery and soft, it melted right in my mouth. Not too long after they whisked our plates away, our appetizers arrived. The soup was good. It had a good amount, as well as reasonably sized, chunks of lobster and full of flavour. It was just a bit too rich and heavy for me for an appetizer, though.

When our entree's came, I was kind of shocked at the small portion size of B's main. It was really just a lobster claw and one piece of pork belly and a few vegetables. And for that reason, I didn't try too much of B's entree, but he did say it was really good. My entree however, was a more decent portion and quite delicious. The steak was a perfect medium rare. Tender and juicy. The seasonable vegetables, which included asparagus, carrots and something I couldn't figure out, were served on top of a bed of pureed potatoes. The onion rings were beautifully golden brown, crisp on the outside and sweet on the inside. What I loved most about this dish was how nicely it was composed with all the different textures. It made it so appetizing.

Several minutes later, our empty entree plates were exchanged for our desserts. My Pavlova looked impressive. It was covered neatly with fresh fruits as well as a dollop of whip cream. It was crisp on the outside but once you get past that first bite, it becomes chewy - almost like a marshmallow with a crispy outer-shell. The meringue by itself was way too sweet for me, but the tart fruits helped cut through some of the sweetness for me. It was quite big, and I wasn't able to finish my dessert. B, however, devoured his. His pastry was layered with a delicious cold lemon cream and roasted pear and figs. Once again, the textures of the components of his dessert really complimented each other. Oh, and we also received complimentary chocolate truffles to accompany the dessert.

Overall, I really enjoyed Five Sails. Out of all of the dine-outs I have been to this year, Five Sails was definitely my favourite - hands down.

Five Sails on Urbanspoon