Tuesday, February 15, 2011

and then i bought 71 lbs of chicken...

so i bought some chickens from shani's farm (http://www.shanisfarm.com/)... it's awesome though because i noticed a lot of people are requesting my chicken dishes... particularly the grilled chicken with sweet potatoes and succotash, which will be making its triumphant return on sunday.
there is definitely a marked difference in taste from grocery store chicken to free range happy chickens. it may be a little more expensive but it is so worth it! i also buy my sausages for the sausage and roasted pepper penne from cheryl at shani's farm - and all of my pork products for that matter.
so this week i've been thinking of lots of international uses for my copious quantities of chicken. i'm definitely going southwest for sunday, but i have lots of other ideas as well:
- szechwan chicken with chillies, peppers, pineapple and rice
- butter chicken with veggies, basmati, grilled naan & raita
- of course the thai chicken and rice soup (i'm eating the last one for lunch!)
- greek inspired chicken breast with olives, capers, roasted peppers, oregano, sun-dried tomatoes, goat cheese & feta
- moroccan chicken tagine with couscous, almonds and raisins...
should be fun, i'm definitely excited to eat everything!
this sunday was super busy at the market and i sold out of a lot of my soups. this week i'll be making a new batch of curried butternut squash soup, thai chicken & rice, roasted red pepper and tomato, and i'm thinking spicy miso mushroom, and french onion with propellor beer. we'll see just how much i can accomplish though...
thought it would be a good idea, as well, to showcase some more of the food before it's covered - just so you know what you're getting into...

this is the base of the shepherd's pie - getaway farms beef, peas, corn and a gravy based on my chipotle bbq sauce.

these are the shepherd's pies when they are finished. instead of straight mashed potatoes i like to add some cheddar, parsnips and celery root (highly underrated vegetables), herbs and green onions. it's that certain 'je ne sais quoi' that makes it a little different than usual.

at this time of year, tomatoes aren't that radical. i like to toss them lightly with olive oil, herbs (mostly oregano) and some s&p. then roast them at a low temperature to concentrate the flavour. they can become great but it just takes a little more effort than when they are at their peak. this summer it is also my mission to figure out how to grow tomatoes in prospect village - however the wind and fog do not make for ideal growing conditions, so we'll see how it works out...

 this is what the tomatoes look like when they are turned into 'caponata'. i personally hate olives but when prepared in this way i actually like them. this is a combo of onions, garlic, capers, olives, roasted peppers, red wine vinegar, sugar, herbs & those oven dried tomatoes. it makes a great pasta sauce (sort of like a puttanesca minus the anchovies) - or on pizza, and it works particularly well with fish & chicken. if you ask trish (the chef at the black cat in ottawa) you can put it on everything - i made her some for her birthday one year because she was so obsessed! also notice the le creuset dutch oven it's being cooked in 

- i love you julia child!
ok time to start cooking - hope to see you at the market this week.

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