Many of us are familiar with age-old sweet and sour meatballs, regular fare on the buffet line or served from a slow cooker or fondue pot with long-handled forks. Roasted meatballs anyone? This version is definitely upscale and will have everyone hovering with forks in hand.
Red Onion Marmalade is a delicious accompaniment to many different dishes. For the vegetarian, warm it up and serve over Camembert or goat cheese. And for a vegan touch, cube and brown tempeh or tofu and spoon warmed onion marmalade overtop.
To make marmalade, peel onions, halve, and thinly slice. Thinly slice 4 garlic cloves. In large, heavy saucepan, heat butter and oil over high heat. Add onions and garlic and stir to evenly coat. Sprinkle with sugar, fresh thyme, and red pepper flakes, and stir to dissolve sugar. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium. Cook, uncovered, for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Onions are ready when juices have evaporated and they begin to caramelize. Add wine, sherry vinegar, and Port and stir in. Continue to cook, uncovered, over medium heat for 25 minutes, or until liquid has reduced by two-thirds and onions are a deep mahogany colour. Remove and cool. Add a pinch of salt, to taste, if you wish. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Marmalade can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. Simply reheat before serving.
To make meatballs, preheat oven to 400 F (200 C). Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
In small saucepan, heat 1 Tbsp (15 mL) oil. Add minced shallots and garlic and sauté briefly until soft. Transfer to large mixing bowl along with remaining ingredients, except ground beef and chives. Stir together to blend. Add ground beef and, using your hands, work in seasoning mixture until evenly blended. Shape into 1 Tbsp (15 mL)-sized balls. You should have about 22 meatballs.
On parchment-lined baking sheet, place meatballs in single layer, making sure they don’t touch one another to allow for even browning during baking. Bake, uncovered, for 20 to 25 minutes, or until centre of meatballs read 160 F (320 C) when tested with a meat thermometer.
Place meatballs on serving platter and spoon marmalade overtop. Sprinkle with chives and serve with bamboo skewers.
Pears and chocolate make for a very natural friendship and play together beautifully in this plant-based, dairy-free cake. This cake is dense and rich, with a medley of spices, and enhanced by just a hint of espresso powder, which allows that chocolate flavour to shine through. In addition to slices of pears being laid on top, this cake employs some pear purée to add moisture and sweetness to the slightly nutty texture provided by the whole wheat flour. Pear primer A firm pear such as Bosc, recognizable by its distinctive dusty brown skin, is perfect for this dish. When eaten raw, Bosc pears are crisp and not too sweet. When baked, this variety softens up and its flavours are enhanced, but it maintains its characteristic long-necked, graceful shape. Unlike a Bartlett pear, which turns from green to bright yellow when ripe, Bosc pears don’t change much in colour when ripe. Give it a little nudge with your thumb near the neck of the pear and it will give slightly—that’s how you know you’ve got a ripe one. Compared to other pears, Bosc will still be quite firm.
Many flavours that complement pears—sage, ginger, maple syrup—also go well with butternut squash, so it makes sense to bring the two together. For this autumn salad, mixed greens are tossed with marinated squash ribbons that serve to dress the salad with spicy, gingery brightness. A juicy yet firm medium-sweet pear, such as red Anjou, works well here, and its vibrant red skin makes a pretty plate alongside butternut squash. The finishing touch is a sprinkling of crispy sage and maple syrup-toasted hazelnuts. Refrigerator tip Treat butternut squash ribbons as you would a dressing, keeping them in the refrigerator until ready to use. They will last a few days in the refrigerator, and you can have them on hand to dress small amounts of lettuce. If, rather than making one large salad, you want to serve individual amounts of this salad, just dress a few leaves with some ribbons; cut up pear and fry sage leaves as you serve.
Luscious figs loaded onto hearty flatbread make a satisfying breakfast or brunch. They’re sweet and delicious when paired with savoury cinnamon-flavoured crunchy pumpkin seeds and tart goat cheese. And, with a dough enriched with whole wheat flour, hempseeds, and nigella, these flatbreads are sure to be satisfying. They’re also chock full of fibre and protein, and with 6 mg of iron, you’ll be on your way to 31 percent of the recommended daily value. A freezer favourite By making dough in advance and freezing, you can make these individual flatbreads part of your routine for days when you don’t have much time. Simply portion dough individually right after mixing, allow it to rise in the fridge for 8 to 10 hours, and then freeze in individual containers. To thaw an individual ball of dough, 24 hours before you wish to use it, remove the container from the freezer and allow it to thaw in the refrigerator. At least an hour before baking, allow dough to come up to room temperature outside of the fridge.