These firecracker shrimp are more interesting than a grocery store shrimp ring and take only minutes to make.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Christmas season foods for entertaining

The Christmas season sneaks up on us every year, and every year we search for new recipe ideas. Simple is best. And if it can be made in advance, even better. There tends to be no end of sweets, but interesting savoury foods are sometimes lacking. Firecracker shrimp Skip the usual shrimp ring this year […] Read more

Pan fried steelhead trout steaks pair nicely with a lightly dressed green salad.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Thirty-minute meals great for busy mid-week schedules

Middle of the week can be busy with appointments, kids’ sports and errands. It can be difficult to get a good meal on the table. Takeout or frozen prepared meals are tempting. With a little advance planning it is possible to create a tasty and nutritious home-cooked meal in 30 minutes or less. Cook once, […] Read more

Balsamic beef short ribs require a long cooking time with moist heat to make them nice and tender.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Instant Pot can make great meals … and Christmas presents

Many stores have already stocked their shelves with appliances for Christmas giving. The Instant Pot is front and centre for a second year. Before buying any appliance, consider how much use it will receive in your kitchen. Also, consider the space it takes either on your countertop or in a cupboard. If space is limited […] Read more


Make a hearty tomato soup with chicken or beef stock added to tomato sauce. Make it a cream of tomato soup by adding whole cream just before serving.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Tomato sauce is a versatile ingredient

Canned tomato sauce is like summer in a jar that will keep throughout winter. Canning may not be as popular as it used to be but it remains the best way to preserve tomatoes. Roma tomatoes are the best for making sauce because they are meatier and have fewer seeds but any tomato can be […] Read more

A banana split with homemade sauces is a delicious treat on a hot summer day.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Jazz up summer with an ice cream sundae party

Summertime, or any time, is ice cream time. My father’s favourite treat was a banana split from the soft ice cream palace in town. Any sundae would do, but a banana split was nirvana. I don’t often indulge at home but why shouldn’t I? The toppings are so easy to make and taste so much […] Read more


Fresh corn is a farmers market staple.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Corn: a nutritious and delicious garden delight

Many of us eat corn for its fresh, bright flavour and sweet juices. It’s also a convenient and fun finger food to eat at picnics and family barbecues. But corn also contains many essential nutrients. It is an excellent source of antioxidants; it contains folate, helpful in fighting heart disease; it is high in thiamine, […] Read more

This peach Melba frosé is refreshing and low alcohol with no added sugar.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Talk to your fruit seller when looking for the right peach

The tree fruit industry in British Columbia has about 400 commercial growers who farm about 15,000 acres of apples, pears, cherries, peaches, nectarines, apricots and plums. The peach is a member of the rose family. It is a cousin of apricots, cherries, plums and almonds. Choose peaches by smelling them. They should have a delicate […] Read more

This blueberry grunt is so simple that you think it can’t possibly be that tasty, but it is. |  Sarah Galvin photo

Crisps, crumbles, cobblers and grunts: baking with fruit

Fresh berry and fruit desserts are a favourite in every corner of our country. It is interesting that many of our regional baked berry dishes are not so different from one end of the country to the other. The name changes, but they are essentially the same. Whether you call it a crisp or a […] Read more


Creamy garlic chicken spanakopita in a skillet is a simple one dish meal.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Cook with spinach, but understand your nutritional needs

Spinach is rich in riboflavin (vitamin B2), vitamin B6, folate, vitamins C & K, magnesium, manganese and iron. It is also rich in beta carotenoids, necessary for healthy eyes and important in the prevention of macular degeneration. Is spinach healthier cooked or raw? That really depends on which nutrient and how long the cooking time […] Read more

Salmon cakes and smoked salmon carbonara are reminders of British Columbia’s historic salmon industry.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Historic cannery tells the story of salmon

Celebrate Canada Day by visiting one of our 171 National Historic Sites. Several are dedicated to telling the history of food in our country. I recently visited the Gulf of Georgia Cannery Historical Site. It is situated in Steveston Village in Richmond, B.C. The production and trade of salmon in those early days was complex. […] Read more