Monday, September 19, 2011

crab apple and ginger chutney

Last week, Q and his cousins went over to my aunt's house for apple picking, something that has become an annual event.  The kids, aged 2 to 5, using ice cream pails as baskets,  gathered as many little crab apples that they could.  It didn't take long, but it was really cute, watching them scramble to see who could get to the apples first.

We came home with half a pail of apples.  Since my oven was still not working (have I complained about that enough yet), a pie was not an option unless I wanted to use the little toaster oven.  I had seen on twitter mentions of an apple chutney by Aarti Sequeira, of Aarti Party on Food Network (why do we not have this show yet in Canada?).  I had to make some changes as I didn't have a few of the ingredients.  The original recipe can be found here.

The resulting chutney was thick and sweet with just a hint of spice.  It was a great savoury way to use the crab apples!

Crab Apple and Ginger Chutney
(adapted from Aarti Party, Food Network)

2 TB canola oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 yellow onion, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 pound crab apples, cored and diced
1 6" piece ginger, cut into matchsticks
1/2 cup sugar
2 TB white wine vinegar

Warm the oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat.  Add cumin seeds and cook for 30 seconds.  Add the onions and cook until golden, 8 - 10 minutes.  Add the chili powder and stir constantly for 30 seconds.  Add the apples, ginger, sugar, vinegar, salt and pepper and stir.  Cook until the sugar thickens and apples soften, about 15 minutes.

Friday, September 16, 2011


Last month, we finally had a chance to check out Anju, a Korean-inspired tapas restaurant.  It seemed that everyone on twitter was talking about this place and raving about the great food, and I couldn't wait to try it.

Anju is located in a cute little house converted into a restaurant in downtown Calgary.  It was a good thing we had made reservations because the place was packed.

I had heard amazing things about their gochujang chicken wings, and knew we definitely needed to try them.  The reviews did not disappoint and this was our favorite dish of the night.  The sticky sauce was spicy but I couldn't get enough.  I'm hungry just thinking about these wings. 

We also tried the oxtail tortellini which I loved!  This was finished with truffle oil and cheese.
The spicy salmon tacos were great!  A little messy to eat but incredibly tasty.  They had just the right amount of heat and Q loved the crisp wontons.

Our server recommended the stone rice bowl which we had with beef.  It was good but after the flavour we experienced in our tapas, this seemed a little bland.  We asked for a side of the gochujang sauce and it perked up the dish tremendously. We really enjoyed it after the addition of the sauce.  Q, who can eat eggs every day for every meal, was very happy that the dish had one.

All in all, it was a great experience.  I would definitely go back to enjoy a flavourful meal of appetizers.

Anju Restaurant & Eecha Lounge on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

chocolate chip cookies

The end of August was spent in the Okanogan.  Our week in Kelowna included quality family time and enjoying the sun, sand and water.  What really excited me was having a working oven for a week! I've been a little lost with mine still not working, and I've been missing baking with Q.

I had most of the ingredients with me, but no baking soda or a mixer.  I made a few changes and within twenty minutes, we were eating warm cookies with cold milk.  The cookies were also great later in the day when we sandwiched some vanilla ice cream between them.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 stick butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp baking powder
2 1/4 cups flour
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 375°.

Combine the sugars and softened butter.  Once combined, add the eggs, one at a time.  Add vanilla.  In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients and add to the wet mixture.  Mix until completely blended.  Add the chocolate chips.  Drop dough on a greased cookie sheet.

Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes.  Makes 3 dozen cookies.
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