Sunday, June 8, 2014

Garlic Scape Salt

Salt. Garlic scapes. Blend together in a food processor. Hello winter soups. 

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Dandelion Lentil Soup

If it were up to me, grass would never be cut - anywhere. Instead of manicured lawns we'd have fields of wild grasses and dandelions anywhere they'd grow. A friend of mine told me a wonderful story of how his aging mother's lawn was left to go to seed because she'd just given up on it. The trade-off for her was the tremendously increased bird life she then got to enjoy!

Even here on Hornby, the sound of lawn mowers just depresses me. Let the grasses be ... And, enjoy what grows for free! I found a recipe for dandelion lentil soup in Savour magazine on-line and decided it was time to harvest some of ours. Trouble was I couldn't just stop at dandelions, not with the sage, thyme, garlic greens, and kale glistening in the sun.

I used mostly dandelion greens but also added a few other leaves just because. The only ingredient I left out of the recipe was ginger. Thought I'd try it without just to see - and it's a much more savoury soup than I think it would be with the blessed ginger root. I'll try that version another time.

A little of the spicy salt I made in the fall and - yum! A bit of wild, a bit of import, and a taste of the green garden to grown in the several months ahead. I love spring.    

Friday, April 25, 2014

Fabulous Feasting! Hornby Island Preschool Cookbook

It's been a while since I bought a cookbook. Mostly I stick with the tried-and-true. But this island has so many amazing cooks that I just had to pick up a copy of this one.

Fabulous Feasting! is a compilation of recipes from dozens of islanders with all sorts of food preferences and specialties: vegetarian, paleo, carnivore, and vegan recipes for appies, soups & breads, salads & veg, main meals, desserts, and holiday specialties. There is also a section for "ancestral" recipes featuring family favourites, and a miscellaneous category with all sorts of pickles, chutneys, relishes, and granola.

One additional section that makes the whole book just that much more Hornby Island is a list of highly imaginative beverages: Galactic Beam (by Andrea Kaback), Screaming Katabatic Cocktail (by Jeremy Payne), Double Trippin' ... (a reference to the ferry, not psychedelics) and Wicked Solstice (both by Darren Bond). Lots of local flavour in so many, many ways.

The cookbook is ring bound, so it lays nice and flat when on the kitchen counter. It's also printed in a decent sized font for easy readability. Most importantly, I've never been to a potluck on Hornby where I didn't like the food, so I know this recipe book is a treasure trove of yumminess. Garden harvests, hunted and gathered ingredients, and lots of soul fills these pages.

A recipe index and a blank page just inside the front cover make the book easy to use and easy to get back to your favourite food picks. Some handy charts start each of the sections with things like equivalents and substitutions for ingredients, cooking times for vegetables, a spice guide, oven temperature charts and several other handy conversions.

Stories of life on the island punctuate the book to give the whole thing real community colour. And - it's a fundraiser for the preschool! Our tiny tots are cared for by the good folks of the school who took the time to collect recipes and assemble this book. It's on sale at the Co-op, but if you are not planning a trip to the island in the near future, you can order the book directly from the school at:

Hornby Island Preschool
Fabulous Feasting Cookbook
2200 Sollans Road
Hornby Island, BC V0R 1Z0
ph: 250-335-2684