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Food Columnist Anya Levykh

Planning a road trip through B.C.? Food columnist Anya Levykh has some great tips for finding good eats along the way. For this week's recipes click "read more".
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Summer Fruit Compote
By Anya Levykh

Served chilled with frozen berries instead of ice cubes, and some muddled fresh mint, for a cool, refreshing summer beverage. I tend to use a mix of stone and berry fruit, but any local fresh fruit can be substituted according to your preferences and what's available.

Makes one large punch bowl of compote.

2 cups fresh large plums, cut into quarters
2 cups fresh apricots, cut into halves
2 cups apples, cored and quartered
1 cup sugar
2 whole lemons, halved

* Instead of sugar, you can substitute with 1 level teaspoon stevia. Be careful not to use too much, or it will leave a slightly bitter taste.

•    In large stockpot on high heat, bring 5-6 litres of water to a boil.
•    Throw in 1 cup of sugar, stir until it is fully dissolved.
•    Squeeze in lemon juice and throw in used halves, along with all fruit.
•    Turn heat down to medium and leave on light boil for up to 45 minutes or until fruit is fully soft and liquid has turned a light, clear, golden colour.
•    Remove from heat and refrigerate until fully chilled, at least two hours.

If you wish, you can strain out the fruit at this point, and just leave the liquid, but I prefer to keep the fruit in the liquid and strain just before serving, as the flavours will intensify in the fridge.

I use the leftover boiled fruit to make purees for desserts and smoothies. The fruit can be frozen after it's pureed and kept for up to three weeks in the freezer.

Enjoy!


Okanagan Fruit Galette
Courtesy of Cameron Smith & Dana Ewart of Joy Road Catering. www.joyroadcatering.com

This recipe makes one 12 inch tart and serves approximately 10 guests.

We sell about 2-300 of these glam rustic French tarts on Saturday mornings at our local Farmers market. It is the best way to highlight all of the incredible local fruit bounty that we have in the Okanagan Valley.

Any fruit in season can be used, but I have given the recipe for a cherry tart.

Ingredients:

Pastry                                                                
2 cups all purpose flour preferably organic                      
3/8 tsp fine salt
1/8 tsp sugar
218 g butter (5 tbsp salted & 9.5 tbsp unsalted)
3 tbsp & 1 tsp ice water

BY HAND
•    Mix the flour, salt and sugar in a bowl big enough to play around in
•    Cut salted butter into 1/2 inch cubes and unsalted into 1/4 inch cubes
•    Using a pastry cutter blend into dry mixture until dough resembles a course meal
•    Sprinkle in the water tossing lightly with hands or a fork
•    Press dough into a solid mass, divide in 2 and wrap tightly in plastic.
•    Push dough into a 1/2 inch flattened disc or square and refrigerate

IN CUISINART with blade attachment
•    Combine flour, sugar and salt in the mixer and pulse.
•    Cube all butter into ¼ inch cubes keeping it very cold
•    Place all butter into the mixer and pulse a few times to coarse meal
•    Drizzle in water while continuing to pulse
•    Dump dough into a bowl and lightly push the dough together by hand
•    Wrap in plastic and refrigerate or freeze.
•    This can be frozen indefinitely if well wrapped. Chill for 1 hr. before rolling
 
Pre-heat the oven to 350F and roll the pastry to 1/4 to 1/8 inch in thickness.
For a cherry galette I do the Martha Stewart trick (that's where I learned it anyway...)

1/2 cup sugar, we use organic unrefined cane sugar, then 2 tablespoons of flour--lightly tossed together. I usually make up this mixture in larger batches then use what is needed to taste.
We have so many lovely varieties of cherries in the Okanagan--some more and some less sweet than others.

For our large galette (which feeds around 8-10 guests), we use one recipe of the galette dough. It is a little more than enough to make one large circle rolled to about 1/4 inch in thickness.  The remaining dough can be balled up, flattened out and used again after chilling.  We use a large stainless bowl to cut a circle approx. 18 inches in diameter.  I roll and cut the disc, then chill it while preparing the fruit. For the small galettes we get 5 discs out of 1 recipe. We roll them a little more thin.

Pit around 3 cups of cherries, then toss on some of the flour/sugar mixture. Try 3/4 cup and taste. Again, depending on the sweet or sour variety of cherry, you may need more or less. Remember you can always add more--and never take away.

Place the fruit in an even layer in the centre of the pastry leaving about 3 inches around the perimeter. Crimp up the edges up and over, to sort of nestle the dough partially down in to the fruit.

Bake approximately 35- 40 minutes or until evenly golden. Cool completely

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