This lovely open-faced sandwich is at once earthy, bright, briny, and fruity. Combining garden-fresh carrots and raspberries not only provides a great flavour profile but also delivers a good dose of anti-inflammatory properties. Also, feel free to play around with the herbs in this recipe. Be inspired by the soft herbs growing in your garden to make this recipe your own.
Culinary herbs can be generally categorized in one of two ways: hard or soft.
Hard herbs are more durable plants with woody stalks and tough leaves and are generally added toward the beginning of a dish. Examples: rosemary, bay leaves, and thyme. Soft herbs are more delicate in texture and are generally added toward the end of cooking or as garnish. Examples: basil, parsley, dill, cilantro, and chives.
In medium bowl, smash 1/4 cup (60 mL) raspberries with a fork. Add olive oil and zest and juice of lemon. Whisk until well combined and set aside.
On large holes of box grater, grate carrots and add to dressing mixture. Gently fold in chopped parsley and olives.
Divide ricotta cheese, spreading evenly over slices of bread. Generously heap on carrot mixture and top with fresh raspberries. Drizzle over any remaining vinaigrette left in bowl and serve.
Tourtière is, for me, the dish that best represents Québec. It can be traced back to the 1600s, and there’s no master recipe; every family has their own twist. Originally, it was made with game birds or game meat, like rabbit, pheasant, or moose; that’s one of the reasons why I prefer it with venison instead of beef or pork. Variation: If you prefer to make single servings, follow our lead at the restaurant, where we make individual tourtières in the form of a dome (pithivier) and fill them with 5 ounces (160 g) of the ground venison mixture. Variation: You can also use a food processor to make the dough. Place the flour, salt, and butter in the food processor and pulse about ten times, until the butter is incorporated—don’t overmix. It should look like wet sand, and a few little pieces of butter here and there is okay. With the motor running, through the feed tube, slowly add ice water until the dough forms a ball—again don’t overmix. Wrap, chill, and roll out as directed above.
My love of artichokes continues with this classic recipe, one of the best ways to eat this interesting, underrated, and strange vegetable. Frozen artichoke hearts are a time-saving substitute, though the flavour and texture of fresh artichokes are, by far, much superior and definitely preferred.
Cervelle de canut is basically the Boursin of France, an herbed fresh farmer’s cheese spread that’s a speciality of Lyon. The name is kind of weird, as it literally means “silk worker’s brain,” named after nineteenth-century Lyonnaise silk workers, who were called canuts. Sadly, the name reflects the low opinion of the people towards these workers. Happily for us, though, it’s delicious—creamy, fragrant, and fresh at the same time. Cervelle de canut is one of my family’s favourite dishes. It’s a great make-ahead appetizer that you can pop out of the fridge once your guests arrive. Use a full-fat cream cheese for the dish, or it will be too runny and less delicious.