Holiday celebrations have expanded in many different ways. What was once a traditional full-sized bird that had cooks up for hours to prepare—only to fall into a slump after serving—has now morphed into offerings beyond the heavy dinner. Christmas brunch is becoming a popular attraction at various restaurants, and their formal offerings are anything but the big bird.
Place unpeeled beetroots in baking dish. Add 1/4 cup (60 mL) water and cover dish tightly. Bake in 350 F (180 C) oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until beets are tender when pierced with skewer. Remove and cool. Peel and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Use as above, or dice and toss into salads.
Although preserved lemon is available at some health food stores and specialty ethnic stores, it’s easy to make your own. Wash 3 organic lemons; cut in half and discard seeds. Very finely dice whole lemons and place in bowl. Stir in 2 Tbsp (30 mL) raw cane sugar and 1 Tbsp (15 mL) kosher salt. Stir to blend. Spoon into sealable jar, tighten, and let rest for 30 minutes.
For an interesting flavour twist, try any of the optional add-ins to the pickled relish: garlic cloves, black peppercorns, fennel seeds, and coriander seeds.
What are quenelles, you ask? They’re egg-shaped dollops from a firm, creamy mixture that add elegance to any dish. Find 2 small spoons with pointy ends and dip them into warm water. Shake off excess water and, with one spoon, take a scoop of quark and pass the mixture repeatedly between the spoons, smoothing each side until a neat quenelle is formed. Practice makes perfect!
Our delicious and visual cured salmon dish is a beautiful example of a sophisticated trend. Itu2019s relatively easy to make and will wow your guests; just keep in mind that youu2019ll have to prepare the salmon 2 to 3 days in advance. Start off your menu with a lovely leek and potato soup and follow it with Salmon and Beet Carpaccio. Finish with a semifreddo cheesecake (a semifrozen dessert much like a frozen mousse) that you can make and freeze in advance.
In small skillet over medium-high heat, heat peppercorns until they start to crackle and pop. Remove from heat. Cool, then crush in mortar with pestle. Transfer to small bowl and stir in dill, then all the kosher salt, sugar, and lemon zest. Stir to fully blend.
Spread half the dill mixture in bottom of glass baking dish large enough to hold salmon. Place salmon on top of dill mixture, skin side down. Evenly scatter remaining dill mixture overtop salmon, pressing lightly to adhere. Wrap dish tightly with plastic wrap to seal, and refrigerate for 2 to 3 days. Turn salmon in dish once a day, basting with liquid that collects; reseal and continue to refrigerate.
While salmon is curing, prepare pickled relish. Peel and thinly slice onion, using mandoline or very sharp chefu2019s knife. Trim tops and bottoms from radishes and thinly slice on mandoline. Arrange in alternate layers in large Mason jar. Combine vinegar, water, honey, and mustard seeds in small saucepan. Bring to a boil. Pour mixture overtop onion and radishes. Bring to room temperature. Seal and refrigerate. Can be eaten immediately or refrigerated for several weeks, although crispness will lessen after 1 week.
When ready to serve, gently scrape seasonings from salmon and blot dry with paper towel. Place salmon skin side down on cutting board. Using very sharp carving knife, slice salmon into paper-thin slices. Thinly slice beetroots using mandoline or sharp knife. Arrange salmon and beetroot slices alternately on large serving platter with some pickled relish. Scatter with orange wedges and diced preserved lemons. If using quark, shape into small quenelles (egg-shaped dollops) and arrange on top. Drizzle dish with oil and lightly season with salt and pepper. Scatter a few pea shoots or micro greens overtop and serve with pumpernickel rye bread, mini toasted bagels, and gluten-free seed crackers.
This recipe is part of the Festive Fusions collection.
Make no mistake, meaty grilled tofu, sweet flame-licked salsa, and chunks of crispy sweet potato make for a meal prepared in the great outdoors that puts the yum in plant-based eating. A master’s touch Perfect spuds: Crispy potatoes on the grill are a revelation. But it’s best to give them a head start on the stovetop, so the potatoes heat through before the exteriors grill to a burnt crisp. Flavourful tofu: Giving tofu a 90-degree turn on the grill halfway through cooking each side will produce a nice crosshatch pattern that makes you look like a grill master. Plus, those overlapping grill marks give tofu even better flavour.
Combine pizza and taco night by firing up the grill. Sweet flame-licked onions, melty cheese, fiery salsa, hearty beans, and crispy flatbread crust all marry well in a no-fuss pizza that comes together fast enough to work within the confines of the weekday time crunch. Set up a work area near the grill so you have all your toppings within easy reach and ready to go. You can also use large Middle Eastern-style pitas for your base. Using store-bought pizza dough? If you want to go more traditional and use pizza dough, you can certainly stick with the grill. Stretch or roll pizza dough (about 1 lb/450 g) to roughly 1/2 in (1.25 cm) thick. It need not be perfectly round or square; it just has to be even thickness. Preheat grill to medium using indirect heat (for a gas grill, leave one burner off; for a charcoal grill, shovel coals onto one side of the grill) and lightly oil grill grates. Brush one side of dough with oil, then place on grill in an area not directly over the heat, oil side down. Once dough is lightly charred and just barely set, about 1 to 2 minutes, use pizza peel or big, flat spatula to transfer it to a work surface, grilled side up. Apply toppings and return pizza to indirect heat. Close grill lid, and heat until edges of crust are crispy and cheese has melted, 5 to 7 minutes.
If a falafel and burger had a love child, this would be it. The result of this hybrid is a vibrantly coloured, complex-flavoured veggie burger you’ll flip over. You can also serve them between toasted hamburger buns with toppings such as sliced cucumber, sliced tomato, and arugula. Holding it together Many plant-based burgers are crumbly and weak, risking a patty that ends up between the grill grates instead of intact on your plate. Keep your burgers together by forming patties no larger than 1 in (2.5 cm) thick, which ensures a nice, even crust on the outside and a thoroughly warmed-through centre, then chilling the patties before grilling. You can also consider using a burger mould, which gives you denser, equally sized patties that cook evenly. Be sure your grill grates are well greased. Deep freeze You can freeze uncooked falafel burgers on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet or plate and then transfer frozen patties to an airtight container. When ready, just thaw and cook as instructed. Falafel cooking options To bake: Arrange falafel on parchment-lined baking sheet and brush lightly with oil; bake at 375 F (190 C) for 25 minutes, or until crispy on the outside and heated through. To pan fry: Heat large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp oil (15 mL) for each 2 burgers in the pan, swirl to coat pan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until underside is browned. Then flip carefully and cook for 2 to 3 minutes more.
Bet you’ve never considered making breakfast or Sunday brunch on the grill. Consider cooking your egg-soaked bread over flames as a way to coax even more flavour out of brag-worthy French toast. You can also use slices of brioche bread and whatever fruit happens to be in season. Of course, nobody could fault you for topping it all off with a drizzle of maple syrup. If you want it dairy free, you can use dairy alternatives such as oat milk and coconut yogurt. Not so fresh Somewhat stale bread is key to great French toast. You want it to be 2 to 3 days old. What if your bread isn’t aged enough? You can speed up the process by slicing bread and then placing it on a pan in 350 F (180 C) oven for about 10 minutes, or until it firms up. Make sure it’s sliced nice and thick to prevent the egg mixture-to-bread ratio being too heavy in favour of egg, resulting in soggy French toast.