: Make boxes for each guest with appetizers, side dishes or even the main course when hosting backyard gatherings this summer. These containers are biodegradable. | Sarah Galvin photo

Watch common touch points with backyard gatherings

Besides physical distancing, the most important thing to know about hosting a gathering during the COVID-19 pandemic is to eliminate common touch points. You can’t just plan a big buffet anymore. When planning your menu, how it is served is as important as the food. Take advantage of individually packaged items such as potato chips […] Read more

The recipe for cherries jubilee was created in 1887 to celebrate Queen Victoria’s 50th year as monarch. Kirsch is the favourite liquor to use but you can also use white rum.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Ice cream desserts are the perfect answer to summer

Beat the heat with cool, frozen desserts and making them doesn’t heat up the kitchen. They can be made a few days in advance to ease your schedule on the day you serve them. Let’s face it, who doesn’t like ice cream? Use a good quality store-bought ice cream or make your own.   Cherries […] Read more

Use only very fresh eggs for poaching. They are nice on top of a salad, a bowl of ramen soup or on toast.  | Sarah Galvin photo

Explore the versatility of cooking with eggs

Eggs come to the rescue in many meal situations. They cook quickly, are nutritious and versatile in so many recipes and we usually have them on hand. Eggs are packed with nutrients. They are high in protein. The yolk has just about as much protein as the white, and most of the nutrients are in […] Read more

T: Sauteed dandelion greens with eggs are easy to prepare for a brunch, breakfast or casual lunch.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Early summer vegetables promise kitchen masterpieces

There are a variety of green vegetables in the early garden season besides lettuces. Chives are among the first herbs to arrive. And dandelions, love them or not, are even earlier. Rather than picking dandelion greens from your lawn go into the coulees or bluffs to find more tender leaves. They are surprisingly tasty and […] Read more

The flavour of many different honeys can be enjoyed during a honey tasting.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Learning about honey can be an enjoyable experience

Back in February, before the pandemic arrived, I invited a small group of friends for an evening of honey tasting. We had eight unique honeys that I collected from local beekeepers, a rancher in Mexico and an imported grocery store honey. Everyone wants the inside track on which is the best honey to buy. The […] Read more

The butter-braised radishes recipe from Mary’s Garden in Surrey, B.C., suggests topping the radishes. I like adding them back to the pan for the last five minutes for added colour and texture.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Books can inspire commitment to eating local

Food stories are interesting. Karen Anderson’s storytelling in Food Artisans of Alberta draws you into the book and you can hardly wait to turn the page. It feels like an intimate chat with the author. In Jennifer Cockrall-King’s book Artisans of the Okanagan, the unique terroir of each region is front and centre. “Terroir is […] Read more

Marinating is not recommended for a leg of lamb roast because it is a tender cut and marinating may degrade the texture of the meat.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Leftovers encouraged when cooking leg of lamb

A leg of lamb rubbed with olive oil, finely chopped garlic, rosemary and sea salt is one of my favourite meals. The meat is tender, flavourful and warms the soul. A friend of mine said, “I don’t think we’ve ever had leftover lamb. It’s always eaten the first meal.” But as a guideline for leftovers, […] Read more

Focaccia is an Italian flatbread that is very easy to make. Use the best olive oil you have and don’t skimp.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Bread for the pandemic as baking gains in popularity

Flour and yeast are hot commodities these days. It’s nice to see that everyone is at home baking. I thought you might like a few recipes to add to your repertoire. I have used these many times and I love them. Cheddar Beer Bread Buns The recipe suggests pale ale but I have used stout […] Read more

Fried rice is adaptable by adding your favourites such as pineapple, chicken, beef, bacon or any vegetables on hand. | Sarah Galvin photo

Cooking from pantry solves lack of grocery store access

When we can’t get out to the grocery store, there is always the pantry to fall back on. Take a moment to consider what pantry staples you can have on hand. It really depends upon your family’s preferences in food. Dried products such as pasta, barley, lentils, chickpeas, nuts and quinoa keep for a long […] Read more