A true Southerner wouldn’t dare cook cornbread in anything but cast iron. This moist olive-spiked cornbread pairs perfectly with the blackened catfish. If you don’t have buttermilk, add 1 Tbsp (15 mL) fresh lemon juice to 1 cup (250 mL) milk, stir, and let sit for 2 minutes.
1 1/4 cups (310 mL) coarsely ground yellow cornmeal
3/4 cup (180 mL) whole wheat pastry flour
2 Tbsp (30 mL) raw cane sugar
3/4 tsp (4 mL) salt
2 tsp (10 mL) baking powder
1/2 tsp (2 mL) baking soda
2 tsp (10 mL) fresh rosemary, chopped
2 large free-range eggs
1 cup (250 mL) buttermilk
1/4 cup (60 mL) plus 1 Tbsp (15 mL) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
3/4 cup (180 mL) Parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 cup (125 mL) pitted kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
Preheat oven to 425 F (220 C) and place 9 to 10 in (23 to 25 cm) cast iron skillet inside to heat for at least 15 minutes.
In large bowl, whisk together cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and rosemary. In separate bowl, lightly beat eggs and whisk in buttermilk and 1/4 cup (60 mL) olive oil. Add dry to wet ingredients and fold in cheese and olives.
Remove skillet from oven. Add remaining olive oil to skillet; swirl to coat bottom and sides. Spoon batter into hot skillet, place in oven, reduce temperature to 400 F (200 C) and bake until golden and a tester inserted into centre comes out clean, about 18 minutes.
Remove from oven and let cornbread cool in skillet for 5 minutes, then turn cornbread out onto cutting board. Cut into wedges and serve warm.
Each serving contains:
297 calories; 10 g protein; 14 g total fat (4 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 34 g carbohydrates; 3 g fibre; 463 mg sodium
source: "Heavy Metal", from alive #349, November 2011
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.