Bookmark and Share

Recipes from Anita Stewart's Canada

Book Cover.jpg
Anita Stewart is joining Radio West for a three part series called, The Flavours of Canada. She's the author of the book, Anita Stewart's Canada. She's bringing recipes from her book. Here are the first two:

Buttermilk Corn Bread
This Loyalist quick bread was likely brought to Canada with the first wave of immigration in the late 1700's. More and more often, it's possible to find good locally grown/milled corn meal. For this recipe I've used a New Brunswick product from Speerville Mills and jazzed it up with a healthy dose of ground flax.

2 cups (500 mL) cornmeal
1 ½ cups (375 mL) all purpose flour
1 ½ tbsps (25 mL) baking powder
1 tsp (5 mL) salt
¾ cup (175 mL) ground flax
2 eggs
2/3 cup (150 mL) maple syrup
2 tbsps (30 mL) canola oil
1 cup (250 mL) buttermilk
½ cup (125 mL) crisp bacon pieces
Oil a 9"(23 cm) cast iron skillet. Place into a preheated 400'F (200'C) oven.
Meanwhile, sift together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder and salt. Stir in the flax. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, maple syrup, canola oil and buttermilk.
Combine with dry ingredients, stirring just till no dry spots remain. Pour into the preheated skillet, sprinkle with bacon pieces.
Bake for 25 - 30 minutes or till browned. Cut into wedges to serve.
Makes 6 - 8 servings
Ali's Amazing Halibut

My best friends' son, Vince Morris, met Ali Kendall when she was cooking and he was tree-planting near Lake Revelstoke, British Columbia. Being the camp cook means being the undisputed reigning monarch of whatever remote location the crew finds themselves in. Vince, a young man who spent as much time mowing down at my kitchen table as he did playing hockey and fishing with my sons, immediately realized on which side his bread was buttered. Ali not only understands hard work (she truly has inherited the gene), she understands flavour. Vince and Ali were married in the summer of 2006.

This recipe speaks to both Ali's Dutch love of butter and of fresh coastal ingredients. Her family, the Brinkmans, story is similar to many of the recent Dutch immigrants to Canada.
"Oma and Opa (my grandparents) came over from Holland in 1950, my Oma was pregnant with my mom at the time (baby number 5 of 10!). They started out living with a farmer and then moved around Ontario before settling in Bowmanville. My uncle and his family still live in the family house there. My grandparents moved to the Kootenays about 15 years ago, then my Opa passed away about 3 years ago and my Oma moved back to Ontario (Whitby) 'cause she missed her old friends. Half of my mom's siblings who are Dutch Christian Reform stayed in Ontario and the other half (the 'tree-planting types') live here in BC. I have about 30 or so blond-haired, Dutch-looking cousins. Oma is still alive and is totally great!"

This is Ali's recipe...simple and utterly perfect. The shallots brown just a bit in the oven and the butter helps to keep the fish moist. Serve with a great BC pinot blanc or even a chardonnay...or with good fresh water from a mountain glacier.

2 lbs (1 kg) fresh, boneless halibut
3 medium shallots
¼ cup (60 mL) butter
Salt and freshly ground pepper
½ lemon

Saute the shallots in 1 tbsp (15 mL) of the butter, Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the halibut in a lightly buttered or parchment-lined baking dish. Spread with the shallots and top with the remaining butter. Squeeze the lemon over the fish and season with a bit more salt and pepper.

Bake, uncovered, in a 375" (190'C) oven, for 20 - 25 minutes or till the fish begins to flake.
Makes 4 servings