A variety of melons, clockwise from top left, include watermelon, honeydew, Santa Claus, cantaloupe and canary.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

It’s a good idea to make the most out of melon season

Melons begin to ripen in mid-August. Most people eat them simply sliced and as a snack or dessert. However, they deserve more credit. They are a good source of fibre and fill you up quickly. Melons have high nutritional value. They are a rich source of vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamins of the B group, […] Read more

Use a variety of herbs from those on hand. Lavender, oregano, thyme and mint from the garden work well. Stuff the fish and tie with butcher’s string to hold it all together.  |  Sarah Glavin photo

Summer at its best: barbecue on the coals

For the past 10 or more years, I have been using my little Weber barbecue with natural charcoal and I totally forget that most everyone else is using gas or propane. What it lacks in convenience it makes up for in flavour. So, I when I ask friends to go out and check the barbecue […] Read more

Eggplants come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The white eggplants have a thicker skin and firmer flesh. These must be peeled before using. Eggplants charred over hot coals acquire a smoky flavour.  | Sarah Galvin photo

Eggplants a mainstay of Mediterranean cooking

Eggplant, also called aubergine, originated in India where it continues to grow wild. As trade routes opened, eggplant was introduced to Europe by the Arabs and transported to Africa by the Persians. The Spaniards carried it with them to the New World and, by the early 1800s, both white and purple varieties could be found […] Read more

Freshly picked and bagged vegetables are a staple at farmers markets across the country.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Summer at the market is great — no matter where you are

A highlight of the summer is the array of markets that pop up across our country; from Halifax to Inuvik to Swift Current, Sask. Even if some markets remain open year-round, we eagerly wait for the summertime markets to arrive. Call it cabin fever, but when the tents go up and growers come out, people […] Read more

Sauces made from fresh garden herbs can be used in many ways with your summer grilling and salads. These sauces are, clockwise from the top, mint pesto, zhoug and Silver Palate’s green sauce.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Summer sauces make simple meals more spectacular

Summer is the season of lazy meals, easy cooking and casual foods. Sauces go a long way to make the simple more spectacular, especially when grilling is on everyone’s menu plan. Fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs are in abundance. Use them in creative ways to add an easy flavour zap to any meal. Toss a […] Read more

Plan a hot dog bar for your next casual lakeside family picnic. |  Sarah Galvin photo

Hot dog bar makes for easy summer family entertaining

What is your favourite way to cook a hot dog: boil, grill or both? Well, it turns out that boiling first and then charring on a hot grill yields the best hot dog. The inside is heated through and the outside is toasted to perfection without burning or drying out the exterior. The broiler works […] Read more

Sweet tea is refreshing on a hot day. Make this into a wine spritzer by mixing equal portions tea with white wine and chill.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Saskatoon berries spark fond summertime memories

A favourite childhood memory for many of us who grew up on the Prairies is foraging for saskatoon berries. I have given little thought to the differences between wild foraged and cultivated types. Like any other fruit or berry, each type will have its own particular characteristics. I asked Elaine Bouvier of Bouvier’s Berry Basket […] Read more

This chicken taco salad is sure to please the whole family.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Three reasons to eat salad every day (if you need them)

There are many good reasons to eat salads. First, leafy greens and raw vegetables are a natural source of dietary fibre. Fibre helps to reduce LDL or “bad” cholesterol. It helps to control blood sugar. It normalizes bowel movements and helps in the prevention of bowel disease. Fibre intake also helps with maintaining a healthy […] Read more

Sheet pan dinners are versatile with no limit except your imagination.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Prepare fast and fresh meals, just in time for spring

May long weekend marks the unofficial beginning of cottage season. We are moving from spring into summer. It’s OK to plant the garden, put out our bedding plants and open the pool. The May long weekend is recognized as a celebration of the Queen’s birthday. Although our reigning queen’s birthday is in June, it is […] Read more

Serve lemon ricotta pancakes with whipped cream and maple syrup. A mimosa is a special touch. The drink is called mimosa because the bright colour resembles the blooming mimosa tree, the symbol of the Mediterranean spring.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Mother’s Day celebration can be either small or large

Finding just the right way to honour your mom on Mother’s Day can be challenging. One can never go wrong with flowers and chocolates. A family brunch brings the whole clan together and can be planned as a potluck so that not all the work falls on one person. Or the celebration can be a […] Read more