Makes 9 lollipops.
In the world of food pairings, cheese with chocolate probably isn’t the first one that comes to mind. These fancy-looking lollipops have maximum wow factor for very little effort. One of the cornerstones of this recipe is the best-available ingredients to ensure the tastiest results. Try these lollipops as a fun hors d’oeuvre with a glass of full-bodied red wine or as a dessert.
If you’re a fan of spice, try jazzing up Parmesan Chocolate Lollipops by omitting the black pepper and substituting a pinch of your favourite smoked paprika or spicy chili pepper powder for a sweet, spicy, and salty bite.
With oven rack in middle position, preheat oven to 350 F (180 C). Line 2 baking trays with parchment paper and set aside.
Place 6 medium-length wooden skewers on baking trays, leaving at least 4 in (10 cm) between each. Place 1 Tbsp (15 mL) grated cheese at alternating ends of each skewer. With your fingers gently spread cheese into 3 in (7.5 cm) circle, ensuring that part of the circle lays over the skewer. Season lightly with black pepper.
One tray at a time, bake Parmesan circles until cheese has melted, spreads slightly, and is lightly golden brown, about 6 to 8 minutes. It’s important to keep an eye on the lollipops as they cook. If undercooked, they won’t be crisp; if overcooked, they’ll taste bitter. Let Parmesan lollipops cool on baking tray. Repeat baking process with remaining tray.
While Parmesan lollipops cool, in heatproof bowl set over saucepan of simmering water, melt chocolate while stirring constantly with rubber spatula. Make sure water in saucepan does not touch bottom of bowl or you run the risk of burning the chocolate. Once chocolate has melted, remove from saucepan and set aside to cool for a few minutes. Lightly drizzle chocolate over cheese lollipops on baking trays and transfer trays to refrigerator, allowing chocolate to set for 10 minutes.
To serve, gently remove lollipops from baking trays and enjoy. If not ready to enjoy right away, they will keep refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
While sablefish’s texture and fat content stand up admirably to the heat of the grill, this firm fish is also delicious poached. For this recipe, sablefish’s luxurious taste is combined with a light fragrant broth of lemongrass and ginger punctuated with the heat of Thai chili. Sustainability status Sablefish, also known as butterfish or black cod, is a rich and satisfying fish, plentiful in omega-3s and sourced sustainably from the Pacific Northwest. Skin and bones Sablefish has large pin bones. Ideally, your fishmonger will remove them, but if not, before you begin, locate them along the fish’s centreline and, using a pair of needle nose pliers, grasp them firmly to remove. You can leave the skin on for this recipe, which may help the fish hold together a little better while cooking, but it can be tricky to peel the skin away from the cooked fish and discard before plating. I opted to remove the skin first and simply keep a close eye on the cooking time, being careful to remove the fish from the poaching liquid before it flakes apart.
These mildly spiced salmon tacos served with sweet and spicy pumpkin seeds will bring a party together. Make a small quantity of salmon go further when you pair it with a fresh red cabbage slaw featuring citrus and cilantro. Drizzled with some bright lime yogurt, the flavours come together perfectly. Sustainability status Wild salmon from the Pacific Northwest and Alaska are considered among the most sustainable, as the fishery is subject to limited harvests. With salmon stocks in decline, supporting managed fisheries such as these can help maintain populations into the future. That may also mean eating salmon less often than we do now. Salmon is a favourite Salmon is the most popular variety of fish in Canada and the second most popular in the US.
B12-rich mussels are a very good and economical source of protein and iron. Steamed mussels are a classic way to enjoy seafood—and so is this rich, aromatic broth of tomato, fennel, and saffron. Be sure to allow saffron to fully infuse to get the full flavour benefit, and finish off the dish with the fragrant fennel fronds. Sustainability status Farmed mussels are considered highly sustainable due to their low impacts on the environment. They are easy to harvest, require no fertilizer or fresh water, and don’t need to be fed externally, as they get all their nutritional requirements from their marine environment. Mussel prep Selection: Look for mussels with shiny, tightly closed shells that smell of the sea. If shells are slightly open, give them a tap. Live mussels will close immediately. Storage: Keep mussels in the fridge in a shallow pan laid on top of ice. Keep them out of water and cover with a damp cloth. Ideally, consume on the day you buy them, but within two days. They need to breathe, so never keep them in a sealed plastic bag. Cleanup: In addition to being sustainable, farmed mussels tend to require less cleaning than wild mussels. Most of the fibrous “beards” that mussels use to grip solid surfaces will have been removed before sale. But if a few remain, they’re easily dispatched: grasp the beard with your thumb and forefinger and pull it toward the hinge of the mussel and give it a tug. Afterward, give mussels a quick rinse and scrub away any areas of mud or seaweed, which, with farmed mussels, will require minimal work.
The delicate flavour of shrimp is highlighted with just a touch of lemon and a hint of mustard, while radish and celery give some fresh crunch to this dish. Eat it in lettuce cups, on top of greens, or served on whole grain bread for a filling snack. Sustainability status Both wild and farmed shrimp can be sustainable depending on where they’re caught and how they’re raised. See our article “Sea Change” for more information about choosing ethical shrimp.