Posts Tagged ‘Recipes’

Posted on September 1, 2011 - by

When Waltzing with the Naked Chef, Hold On to Your Seachoice Seafood Guide

Photo: Blue Water Cafe

Today’s guest post is courtesy of Ana Simeon from Sierra Club BC and Seachoice.

You’re watching your favourite cooking show and the chef is putting together something mouth-watering like “Pan-Seared Chilean Seabass” or “Grilled Monkfish with Olive Sauce.”

Enthused, you may be tempted to rush out to get the Chilean seabass. With candles and wine, the meal is a success and your culinary prowess toasted by your family and guests. And then a niggling thought pricks the bubble of contentment: isn’t Chilean seabass on the taboo list? You look up “Chilean Seabass” on your Seachoice iPhone app and, true enough, there’s a long laundry list of crimes against the ocean – from illegal overfishing (over 50% of Chilean seabass on the market is thought to be illegally obtained) to by-catch of internationally endangered wandering albatross and grey-headed albatross. Oh dear, oh dear!

Although many chefs are beginning to take ocean health into account when concocting their creations, this is a process that has taken root most strongly at the restaurant level, but has yet to penetrate the TV networks.

Does it mean you have to stop watching those benighted cooking shows? Not at all. For every red-listed fish there is a delicious, and more sustainable, alternative waiting to take its place. For example, sablefish has been described as the “fish version of chocolate” and its smooth, silky taste (with 50% more Omega 3’s than salmon) more than holds its own against the commercially touted Chilean seabass. To get you started, here’s a recipe for Caramelized Sablefish with Tangy Orange-Tamarind Sauce from Vancouver’s fabled Blue Water Café:

As a cooking show viewer, you’re also in a perfect position to educate chefs and networks about sustainable seafood. Call in or drop them an email – spread the word!

The table below lists ocean-friendly substitutes for red-listed seafood in your favourite recipes:

Red-Listed Species Best Choice Alternative
Chilean Seabass Sablefish(AK, BC)
Cobia (US Farmed)
King Crab Dungeness Crab (Canada; US West Coast)
Flounder or Sole Halibut (Pacific)
Marlin (Blue or Striped) Swordfish (harpoon and handline from Canada,
North Atlantic and East Pacific)
Monkfish Sablefish (AK, BC)
Orange Roughy Pacific Cod (Alaska)
Red Snapper Tilapia (US farmed)

We’d love to hear of your experiences substituting these ocean-friendly choices! Email us at or comment below.

Ana Simeon works as communications coordinator and grassroots organizer for Sierra Club BC and Seachoice, a coalition of five internationally respected Canadian conservation organizations working to shift the market to sustainable seafood. Ana also writes for BC print and online media on environmental topics. Providing social media and online content for Seachoice taps into her passion for local food, food security and all things culinary.

Ana enjoys hiking, bird-watching, and grows a sizeable vegetable garden with her husband Tom. On cold, rainy days, she keeps to her fireside with a book from her extensive collection of 1930 British detective fiction.


Posted on June 17, 2011 - by

Wake Up and Smell the Rhubarb


Growing up in Minnesota, where snow often remains on the ground well into April, I anticipated the arrival of the first spring vegetables with an especially ravenous impatience. My parents grew green beans, tomatoes, cucumbers, cantaloupes, and pumpkins (accidentally), but before any of those were ready to eat, our garden grew brilliant with rhubarb. Their elephant ear leaves, big as my head, obscured thick vermillion stalks that gleamed like firepokers in the sun.

When the rhubarb grew ripe, Dad chopped the thick stalks into chunks like celery and the kitchen smelled fresh like a rainstorm. That was how I knew we would have crisp for dessert. Some evenings we ate it with vanilla ice cream, other nights in a rich puddle of half-and-half. I liked the crisp best fresh out of the oven, the warmed cream soaking up cinnamon and sugar. I drank it all, like cereal milk.

Grandma made rhubarb pies, their crusts redolent with nutmeg and the gentle porkiness of lard. An egg beaten into the filling prevented the juice from bursting Its banks. She packed so much rhubarb inside that the pie had altitude, rolling hills of spice-dusted crust on top.

I still love any dessert made with rhubarb, but have learned that it complements savory dishes just as well. Simmer diced rhubarb with ginger, garlic, sugar, spices, and cider vinegar to make a tangy chutney that you can serve with grilled cheese sandwiches or pork tenderloin; combine it with red lentils, cilantro, and chilies in a hearty curry, or puree it with strawberries, orange juice and sugar and chill for a refreshing summer soup.

The following recipe for rhubarb chutney comes from Loulies, my favorite source for simple seasonal recipes using whatever’s fresh locally here in DC.

Rhubarb Chutney

Makes about 2 cups

4 c. fresh rhubarb (about 1 pound)
3/4 c. sugar
1/3 c. cider vinegar
1 Tbls. minced peeled fresh ginger
1 Tbls. ground garlic
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. dried crushed red pepper

Rinse and cut rhubarb into small pieces. Combine all ingredients, except rhubarb, in heavy large pot. Bring to simmer over low heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Add rhubarb, increase heat to medium-high and cook until rhubarb is tender and mixture thickens, about 5 minutes. Cool completely. Place in a glass jar and chill. Bring to room temperature before using.

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Posted on November 28, 2009 - by

FRESH Recipes: Holiday Seitan Loaf w/ Mushroom Gravy

Eating Liberally’s gobbly-good holiday seitan loaf with mushroom gravy

By: Kerry Trueman
Kerry Trueman is co-founder of, a netroots organization and website that promotes sustainable agriculture, and, a website for farmers, gardeners, and eaters who favor conservation over consumption. She blogs about climate change, low-impact living and sustainable agriculture for the Huffington Post, AlterNet, the Green Fork, EatingLiberally, among other websites, and authored a chapter on ecological eating for Rodale’s Whole Green Catalog (September 2009).
To make the loaf:HolidaySeitanLoaf
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced or crushed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup cooked pinto beans
1 cup vegetable broth
1/3 cup yellow miso
2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
2 cups vital wheat gluten
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon sage
1 teaspoon dried cilantro
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon rosemary
freshly ground salt and pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan and sauté the onion and garlic till translucent. In a blender or food processor, combine the beans, broth, miso, and tamari. Add the onions and garlic and process till smooth.

Combine the wheat gluten, nutritional yeast, and seasonings in a large bowl and mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix well (it’s easiest to use your hands.)

Shape the dough into three loaves and wrap in tinfoil. Place in a steamer for 40 minutes. This method of cooking yields a moist loaf; to brown and crisp them on top, place them in a loaf pan and bake them in the oven at 350 degrees for half an hour or so. You can also slice up the loaves and crisp them in a frying pan.

To make the gravy:

½ ounce dried mushrooms (shitakes or porcinis, ideally)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced or crushed
1 cup thinly sliced leeks
1 cup fresh shitake mushrooms, sliced
3 tablespoons whole wheat flour
1 12 ounce carton firm silken tofu
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons yellow miso
3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
¼ cup nutritional yeast
freshly ground pepper and salt to taste

Soak the dried mushrooms in a ½ cup of hot water while you prepare the garlic, leeks, and fresh mushrooms.

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and sauté the leeks till translucent. Add the garlic and shitakes and sauté for another five minutes or so. Add the flour and stir, coating the leeks and mushrooms.

Place the dried mushrooms and their liquid in a food processor or blender. Add the tofu, the water, miso, tamari, nutritional yeast, and seasonings. Blend well, then add to the pan, stirring thoroughly. Whisk for several minutes, till the mixture thickens.

Place the gravy in the blender or food processor and process till smooth. Serve hot over slices of the seitan loaf.


Posted on November 24, 2009 - by

FRESH Recipes: Cranberry-Kumquat Sauce

Welcome to FRESH Recipes!

We’ll be posting new recipes on a regular basis that feature healthy, local ingredients. Wanna have your recipe included? Send it our way!

In honor of the holiday season, we’ll be posting recipes for the comfort foods that we all enjoy on a seasonal basis.

Cranberry-Kumquat Sauce

Submitted by: Lorna Sass, QUEEN OF PRESSURE COOKING


Here’s an unusual but quick and easy relish to make for Thanksgiving. Kumquats–which happily are in season at the same time as cranberries–add a definite citrus punch, and the pressure cooker does a great job of softening their skins. If you can’t locate kumquats, you can substitute an orange.

If you don’t have a time-and-fuel-efficient pressure cooker, you can do this recipe in a heavy, 4-quart covered pot. It will take 25 to 30 minutes; stir occasionally.


Makes 5 cups

Three 12-oz. packages cranberries, rinsed

12 ounces (2 1/2 cups) kumquats, rinsed and halved (or substitute 1 orange, pitted and chopped

1 cup crystallized ginger, coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons agave syrup or honey, or to taste

1 cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped

Bring 1/2 cup water to a boil in a 6-quart or larger cooker. Add the cranberries, kumquats, and crystallized ginger.

Lock the lid in place. Over high heat, bring to high pressure. (This is likely to take at least 5 minutes.) Cook for 1 minute. Turn off the heat, and allow the pressure to come down naturally for 10 minutes. Release any remaining pressure by setting the cooker under cold running water.

Cool slightly. Add agave syrup to taste. Transfer to a bowl or storage container and bring to room temperature. Stir in the nuts just before serving. Refrigerate for up to 1 week.