Archive for BBQ

BBQ Peaches with Balsamic Reduction

I love living in the city. I’m a city girl. I’ve lived in the country, but I much prefer to be able to walk to the 7-11, even in the middle of the night, if needed, for milk, if I’m out. The pedestrian lifestyle I’m able to live downtown rocks.

However, every once in a while, it’s also awesome to get out of the city, away from the sirens and the constant honking of horns. This past week, I’ve been staying at a boat-access only cabin on Ruby Lake on the Sunshine Coast. This means many things; no showers, no dishwasher, no flush toilets. A rustic kitchen. And… a Barbecue! BBQ is something I love, but I seldom get to do. In my tiny downtown apartment, we have a balcony only big enough for the door to swing open. There’s no room for even a tiny BBQ out there, so I have to limit my grilling to times when I have access.

To make up for it, this week I’ve been grilling all the things! And I’m excited to share some of them with you.

BBQ peaches

First off, we picked up Okanagan Peaches on our way home from Vernon last week. These are pretty much the best peaches you’ve ever had in your life—large, juicy, tree-ripened. They taste like summer.

We had a beautiful peach gelato at the Smoke ’n’ Oak Bistro at Wild Goose in Okanagan Falls, and I want to try to make that next, but sadly my ice cream maker won’t run at the cabin.

Instead, I decided to grill the peaches. I know cooking fruit on the BBQ sounds kind of strange, but it brings out the natural sugar of the peaches. To counteract this sweetness, I served them with a balsamic syrup. You could also add a dollop of whipped cream.

We ate the leftovers for dessert last night, wrapped up in crepes with nutella and whipped cream. They were quite the hit!

bbq peaches

BBQ Peaches with Balsamic Reduction

Ingredients:

  • Fresh, ripe peaches
  • olive oil or butter
  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar, slowly simmered over a low heat for about 15 minutes, until reduced by at least half, and syrupy in consistency (I used a chocolate-infused one for extra sweetness). You could also buy a pre-made balsamic reduction.

Method:

  1. Heat the BBQ up to about 300 degrees.
  2. Cut the peaches in half, length-wise, and remove the stone. Brush the cut side of the peaches with melted butter or olive oil, to keep them from sticking to the grill.
  3. Place, cut-side down on the BBQ, and then close the lid. Allow to grill fro about 5-10 minutes. You want nice grill marks on them.
  4. Turn the peaches over, close the lid, and allow to cook for another 5 minutes.
  5. Remove, plate, and drizzle with balsamic reduction before serving.

Hazelnut and Fennel Vinaigrette + 100 more

It’s summer! That means plentiful produce, lighter meals, and less cooking. I’m sure, you, like me, change your eating habits in the summer, if for no other reason than it’s too hot in the kitchen to cook. Most folks move it outside to the BBQ, or experiment with non-cooked dinners, like salads.

But salads can be boring too, especially if you fall back to the same items all the time. Instead, prowl the Farmer’s Markets and choose items that you might not normally pick, and integrate them into your salads for some new kick. Another way of un-borifing your salads is to use new dressings.

Maison Orphée, a Canadian-owned company specializing in gourmet ingredients like olive oils, vinegars and salts, recently released a new app that is going to make your summer so much easier! In it, there are over 100 combinations of vinaigrettes and marinades for all your summer salad and BBQing needs.

Here’s a basic vinaigrette that I really like from their app; it’s the hazelnut oil that really takes it to the next level, giving it a roasted, nutty flavour.

maison orphee

This vinaigrette does double duty; you can put it on a salad, or you can toss it with pasta and roasted veggies for a simple, quick dinner. You could even make this into a pasta salad, by using rotini or penne or macaroni, cooking it, and then cooling it in the fridge. Add your veggies, dress, and voila!

Hazelnut and Fennel Vinaigrette

Kale with grape tomatoes, radishes, roasted chickpeas, and Hazelnut and Fennel Vinaigrette.

Hazelnut and Fennel Vinaigrette

(via the Maison Orphée app)

Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1.5 tbsp hazlenut oil
  • salt with herbs de provence to taste
  • 1-2 tsp fresh chopped chervil, tarragon, or fennel fronds
  • fennel seeds, roasted in a dry pan and crushed to taste

Method:

Place all ingredients in a mason jar, screw the cap on, and shake well.

 

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