Grilled Fruit Salad with Lime

Yesterday was Father’s Day, and Danny gave up breakfast in bed to join his dad and the rest of the family for a good cause: the Procure 5k walk to raise funds for prostate cancer research.

Even Clara came along, and we strolled the course, not concerning ourselves with the time, but just happy to be together, and with a cancer survivor in our group.

When the race wrapped up, we headed back to the grandparents to jump in the pool and fire up the barbecue. I wanted to contribute a dessert that was refreshing after our (rather sweaty) walk and quick to toss together.

I decided on a colourful salad of grilled pineapple, mango, and peaches, with a handful of raspberries thrown in, and a squeeze of lime juice on the top. It was a fine, fine choice.

[Read more…]

Warm Potato Salad with Grainy Mustard, Bacon & Ramps

This past weekend was gorgeous and sunny and we spent a good part of it outdoors, puttering in the yard, walking down by the water, and picnicking on the grass. It seemed like all it took was that burst of heat and the whole countryside exploded into vibrant green foliage. Our forest is carpeted with trillium, ferns, and in certain areas, ramps.

Synonymous with spring, ramps, or wild leeks, are slender white bulbs with a delicate green fronds and a mild garlicy flavor that grow on the forest floor in Northern US and Canada.  Ramps are known as ail de bois up here, and are held in high regard by chefs and foodies alike. The fact that we have our own special stash behind our home is amazing and enough to make this chef-forager positively giddy.

Last Saturday I took my morning cup of coffee, donned my purple Croc boots, and set out to harvest ramps for the potato salad I was making for a pot-luck that evening. Within just a few minutes, I had a handful of ramps, but I lingered amidst the wildflowers to finish my coffee, and let the sweet smell of spring rain in the forest rejuvenate my spirit.

I’m not sure which was more rewarding, the few minutes of solace or the haul of ramps.

[Read more…]