Ricardo: These comfort food recipes will carry you through to winter’s end
Dishes to make you feel warm and fuzzy inside, with flavours to conjure up memories of old favourites.
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Now, more than ever, we need to satisfy our comfort food craving to get us through the last of this cold weather. These two meals are part of my farewell to winter: dishes to make you feel warm and fuzzy inside, flavours to conjure up memories of old favourites, and recipes that will become new classics.
SEARED SALMON WITH CIDER SAUCE AND CELERY ROOT PUREE
With its distinct but delicate taste and ability to take on various flavours, salmon is definitely a fish favourite. I boosted this fillet with a little local inspiration, using apples, apple cider vinegar and a bit of ice cider in the sauce. Served on top of a soft celery root mash with just a hint of garlic, this recipe will make you nostalgic for fall.
Celery root purée:
1 onion, chopped
2 tbsp butter
6 cups (780 g) peeled and cubed celery root
2 cups (500 mL) milk
2 cups (500 mL) water
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 tbsp butter
1/3 cup (80 g) lightly packed brown sugar
1 Empire or Cortland apple, peeled, cored and diced
1 tbsp (15 mL) cider vinegar
1/4 cup (60 mL) ice cider
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) beef broth
1/4 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
1 1/2 lb (675 g) salmon fillet, with the skin, cut into 4 pieces
1 tbsp butter
2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
In a saucepan over medium heat, soften onion in 1 tbsp of butter. Add celery root and continue cooking for 1 minute. Add milk and water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until the celery root is tender. Drain.
In a food processor, purée celery root with garlic and remaining butter. Season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
Meanwhile, to make the cider sauce, soften onion in butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add brown sugar and apple and continue cooking for 5 minutes or until the brown sugar starts to caramelize. Deglaze with cider vinegar. Add ice cider and continue cooking for 1 minute. Add broth and pepper and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes or until sauce reduces by half. Season with salt and pepper.
In a non-stick skillet over medium heat, sear salmon in butter, flesh side down, for 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Turn salmon onto skin side and continue cooking for 4 minutes or until desired doneness.
Spoon purée onto plates. Top with the salmon steaks and drizzle with sauce. Sprinkle with parsley.
Makes 4 servings.
HONEY ROASTED ORANGE CHICKEN
This sheet pan roast chicken recipe is one of my wife Brigitte’s favourites and it couldn’t be easier to throw together. With only six ingredients, this sweet, citrusy chicken with a kick of spicy sambal oelek (and baby potatoes on the side) can be prepared in just 15 minutes! Perfect for a quick weeknight meal, it’s a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.
1/4 cup (60 mL) honey, warm
1 tbsp (15 mL) sambal oelek
1 1/2 lb (675 g) baby potatoes
2 tbsp (30 mL) olive oil
8 bone-in chicken thighs with the skin
1 orange, sliced
With rack in middle position, preheat oven to 425°F (220°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a bowl, combine honey and sambal oelek.
On prepared sheet, toss the potatoes with the oil. Arrange the chicken thighs with the potatoes, skin side up. Brush the thighs with the honey mixture. Season with salt and pepper, then scatter the orange slices over top. Bake for 1 hour or until the meat easily detaches from the bone and the potatoes are tender.
Makes 4 servings.
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