Salad for breakfast? Trust me when I say this is a wonderful way to start your day. The grapefruit in this recipe is full of the body-boosting antioxidant vitamin C and just the smell of it may boost serotonin levels and your mood. Avocados are chock full of folic acid and omega-3s, which have both been shown to have mood-boosting benefits.
Place large cast iron skillet or frying pan over medium-low heat. Add rolled oats and almonds, and toast, stirring frequently, until lightly toasted and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Remove to bowl and replace pan back over medium-low heat.
Add coconut oil and maple syrup to pan and cook until bubbly, about 30 seconds to a minute. Stir in reserved toasted oats and almonds, chia seeds, hemp hearts, flaxseed, cinnamon, and salt. Cook mixture, stirring often with heatproof spatula or wooden spoon, until it turns golden brown and fragrant, about 3 minutes. Remove pan from heat and set aside, allowing granola to cool at room temperature for at least 20 minutes. If you push granola into a pile in the centre of the pan and let cool, it will form into granola clusters. Granola will become crunchy as it cools. Granola can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
When ready to assemble salad, using sharp knife, cut a small slice from bottom and top of grapefruits. Place one cut side on cutting board and, working from top down, cut peel off, making sure not to leave a lot of white pith on the outside. Cut each grapefruit in half, then slice into half-moons about 1/2 in (1.25 cm) thick. Discard any seeds and place in large bowl along with jicama, avocado, and olive oil. Gently toss together and divide among 3 serving bowls. Top with sprinkle of fresh mint, ground black pepper, and 2 Tbsp (30 mL) granola on each salad.
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.