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Spring Dinner Party

Recipes from The Salmon House on the Hill

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Spring Dinner Party

"Everybody does too much when they entertain," says Executive Chef Dan Atkinson, who creates feasts daily at West Vancouver's Salmon House on the Hill. "The stress on the person doing the cooking can be unreal."

“Everybody does too much when they entertain,” says Executive Chef Dan Atkinson, who creates feasts daily at West Vancouver’s Salmon House on the Hill. “The stress on the person doing the cooking can be unreal.”

“How many times does a meal hit the table while the cook is still working away in the kitchen? You don’t need nine salads and everyone’s favourite dishes on the table,” says the ever-affable Atkinson. “I say to my friends when they invite me over, cut down on the number of dishes and come enjoy your guests!”

Fewer dishes need not mean fewer flavours. Atkinson is a big booster of a pantry well stocked with topnotch oils and vinegars that transform everyday into entertaining. “I’m never without truffle, avocado, and pumpkin oils. I’m also a fan of ethnic pastes and sauces because, inevitably, someone wants spice and someone doesn’t.”

The key ingredient in Atkinson’s dishes, though, is passion. A healthy dose of pragmatism ensures that they are as replicable as they are delectable, and a few years back he filled the Salmon House on the Hill Cookbook (Whitecap Books, 2000) with his easy-to-cook creations.

Atkinson’s parting words of advice for the entertaining cook: Get someone else to do the dishes!

Recipes

Wherever possible, organic ingredients have been used in all our recipes.

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