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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Roasted Apple BBQ Sauce

There are many BBQ sauces available on the market today representing many flavors with influences from around the world.  The easiest thing to do is go out and get a bottle from your supermarket and splash it all over your food and voila....done!   In reality,. we don't know what chemicals we are ingesting from all these products.
The truth is, making your own sauce is almost as easy as buying a bottle.  This recipe is an example of a home made sauce that is not only easy to make but is a little different from the what you usually purchase.
Great for chicken, ribs and large slow cooked cuts like flank steak or brisket this sweet sauce has a little kick of heat in the end and will leave you licking your fingers clean.


2 apples ( I used Jazz apples , feel free to substitute)
2 tbsp. canola oil
1/2 onion diced
2 Tbsp brown sugar
3 Tbsp maple syrup
2 Tbsp honey dijon mustard
1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 tsp. cayenne pepper or your favorite hot sauce ( more can be added to your taste)
1 tsp. roasted garlic
salt and pepper
4Tbsp. water
Chop and peel apple, coat with canola oil and place in a 400* oven for 1 hour.
Once brown and caramelized remove from oven and place on stove top.
On medium heat add onions and saute with apples for 2 minutes then add remaining ingredients except water.
Cook for 10 minutes stirring often.
Let cool then place in a blender or food processor , add water and puree until fairly smooth.
 Simply grill your meat with a little salt and pepper then slather the sauce on it, basting until meat is cooked and sauce is wonderfully caramelized.
I have tested this sauce on various cuts of meat and chicken and it is a REAL crowd pleaser! Enjoy the taste of championship BBQ in your own backyard without nasty chemicals and preservatives! ENJOY!

Can be refrigerated for 2 weeks.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Grilled Fennel Salad

Fennel can be an acquired taste.  I love it for its refreshing flavor and fresh crunch.  In most cases fennel is eaten raw but in this recipe it is marinated and grilled.  Combined with some fresh ingredients this wonderful salad is a departure from your everyday lettuce.


1 fennel bulb, stalks removed and cut in 1/4 inch thick slices
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes cut in half
1/2 cup fresh raspberries
1 clove of garlic finely chopped
2 mint leaves finely chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
3 Tbsp..Orange juice
Sea salt
Fresh cracked black pepper


Combine tomatoes, raspberries , garlic, mint, oil, vinegar, orange juice, salt and pepper in a bowl.
Add sliced fennel to marinade and set aside for at least 1 hour.

***Pre heat grill to high heat***

Remove fennel from marinade and place on hot grill cooking for 8 minutes on each side.
Fennel should be slightly charred and soft but still al dente.
Plate fennel, cover with remaining marinade and set aside for 10 minutes.
This dish can be served warm or cold!
For a little more kick, add crumbled feta cheese on top.

With fresh, savory and sweet flavors this has summer written all over it. This salad makes a great side dish for grilled meats and fish.

Prep. time 10 minutes plus 1 hour marinating.
Cooking time 16 minutes

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Grilled Portobello and Veggie Panino

Healthy eating doesn't need to be bland and boring.  Switching it up and making it fun once in a while is the key to enjoying healthy eating.  In this recipe we have taken the BIG BURGER concept and made it into something delicious, satisfying and fun.  Replacing a hamburger with a large portobello mushroom and the toppings with some tasty grilled vegetables makes this sandwich feel like you are out eating fast food but with all the benefits of a great home cooked meal. 

 4 large portobello mushroom caps
2 zucchinis cut lengthwise 1/4 inch strips
1 red bell pepper cut in strips
1 large red onion sliced into 4 discs ( keep the rings intact)
1 eggplants cut into 1/2 inch slices
4 heaping Tbsps. of soft creamy goat cheese
Extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbsp. basil pesto
2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
Salt and pepper
4 fresh ciabatta buns
juice from 1 lemon
In a bowl mix some olive oil, chopped garlic, lemon juice, pesto, salt and pepper. Pour over each mushroom cap until well coated and set aside.
Brush remaining veggies with olive oil, add salt and pepper.
Grill veggies until edges begin to char and caramelize approximately 10 minutes.
At the same time grill mushroom caps bottom down first for 5 minutes then flip and cook an additional 10 minutes.
Remove all veggies and leave only mushroom caps on grill then add 1 heaping Tbsp. of goat cheese to the center of each cap. Let melt for 5 minutes then remove.
Slice open the fresh bun and place 1 mushroom cap and an assortment of the other veggies on top.
This fantastic sandwich can be served hot or cold and will be a symphony of flavors and textures and possibly leaving you never wanting a hamburger again!

Prep. time 20 minutes
Cooking time 20 minutes

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Grilled Salmon with Chapagne Salsa

I love fresh Fish.  Delicate, flavorful and light yet very satisfying.  There are many ways of preparing fish but my absolute favorite way to cook it is on a grill.
Salmon is a very abundant fish here in Canada and we tend to eat a lot of it.  Tender and flaky salmon fillet and a wonderfully light,  fresh tasting salsa are a superb combination in this easy a quick recipe.


Salmon Fillets cut into 2 inch pieces

for Salsa:
1/2 cup fresh cherry tomatoes cut in quarters
1 roasted red pepper cleaned and finely chopped
1/2 cup sweet champagne (sparkling wine or proseco can be used)
1 clove garlic finely chopped
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 cup fresh basil chopped
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper

Pre heat and oil your grill to prevent fish from sticking.

Rub salmon with olive oil on both sides and set aside.
Mix all other ingredients in a bowl and refridgerate .
Sprinkle salmon with salt and pepper and grill on both sides for 3 mins each.
Plate salmon and top with salsa, serve immediately.

 Enjoy with a fresh summer salad and a glass of white wine.


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