Tangy kefir (a yogurt-like beverage) is a good bet when you want to load up on immune-boosting probiotics, or so-called “good bacteria.” Use it to soak oats and a health-hiking turmeric seasoning for an ultimate make-ahead, exotic-tasting, get-better breakfast.
As a good source of probiotics, protein, and calcium, kefir is a dairy aisle nutritional rock star. But often it can be sullied by added sugars. To keep your intake of the sweet stuff in check, choose varieties labelled “plain.”
In medium bowl, combine honey, turmeric, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, and salt. Add 2 Tbsp (30 mL) hot water and stir to dissolve honey. Stir in kefir.
In each of 2 wide-mouth jars or cereal bowls, place 2/3 cup (160 mL) oats and 2 Tbsp (30 mL) flax. Add half the kefir mixture to each jar or bowl, and stir until all oats are moist. Top with mango, coconut, and pistachios. Seal jar shut or cover bowl and chill overnight.
This recipe is part of the Hold the Cold collection.
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.