Experimenting with flavors – Blueberry, corn and cinnamon candied pecan Gelato

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In my never-ending quest to challenge my taste buds, I am trying new combinations for gelato’s. As blueberries and corn are in season, I thought, well, why not? Pecans work well with blueberries, let’s add some! Low and behold, it was delicious! I also tried something new, adding 1/4 cup alcohol to have a softer serve on the ice cream and it really works! The only mistake I made was using rum, too pungent for delicate berries and sweet corn. I’m thinking something like a dessert wine might work really well. You don’t have to add the alcohol, you will then need to remove ice cream from freezer 10 minutes before serving. Happy experimenting!

Recipe

2 cups blueberries, well rinsed

2 ears corn, steamed and grains cut from stalk

1/2 cup pecans

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon maple syrup

3/4 cups cream

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup water

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Dash salt

Instructions

Make simple syrup: bring to a boil sugar & water and allow to simmer for 2-3 minutes. Place in the fridge to chill. Cook ears of corn in boiling water for 10-15 minutes, allow to cool before cutting corn off the cob. Place corn nibblets in fridge to cool completely. Heat a small cast iron pan on medium heat, add butter and when sizzling, add pecans and cinnamon, stir to combine and allow pecans to caramelize. Add maple syrup, stirring occasionally until sticky. Remove from heat and scoop onto parchment paper and allow to cool completely before roughly chopping, set aside. Place blueberries and corn in blender with simple syrup, pulse to combine but not too much, you want small bits of fruit throughout. Add cream and blend to combine. If mixture is cold, continue to freezing in ice cream machine or place in fridge to chill thoroughly before adding to ice cream machine. When ice cream is almost completely solid, add candied pecans and alcohol if using. Remove ice cream and store in container in the freezer. Makes 6-8 portions. Keeps in the freezer up to a month. Enjoy!

 

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When all else fails, the market stalls keep my spirits up & Italian plum Clafoutis

 

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We all have something that drives us, that we love doing no matter what, that we never get tired of and are always interested in learning more about. For me, food is definitely it. I love reading about it, I love shopping for it, I love cooking it, I absolutely love offering it and I really love eating it! If my spirits are down, I can go to the kitchen and start baking, it’s my meditation. What could possibly elevate that experience? Growing my food. Actually having a small orchard and vegetable patch. I have this fantasy of owning a small farm, maybe having a small bed and breakfast, selling my canned jewels, a totally self-sufficient operation! I guess you put that in the eco-tourism category, who knows, maybe one day 🙂 Living in an appartment in a big city and working in an office in a tall downtown building has probably lost it’s charm for me. I am craving a lifestyle that is diametrically opposed to the one I’m living now, maybe age is working it’s magic on me!!! In the meantime, I’ll be dreaming away whilst walking through the market, for the short month we have left! Happy September 🙂

Recipe

1 lb prunes, cut in two, keeping pits for flavour

250ml milk

3 eggs

Grated nutmeg

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup slivered almonds

2 tablespoon butter

2 tablespoon buckwheat flour

2 tablespoons almond flour

1 teaspoon vanilla

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Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°. Butter a baking dish and place plums in a decorative pattern, halves with pits down. Put aside. Warm milk. Cream butter and sugar and add vanilla and flours. Beat in warmed milk until smooth. Pour over plums, sprinkle almond slivers on top and place in middle of oven, bake for 30-40 minutes, or until golden. Makes 6 servings. Keeps well in the fridge for up to a week. Enjoy!

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Rhubarb compote for some spring inspiration!

IMG_0658I truly wish this weather would clear up. Montreal is such a sunny beautiful city and spring is spectacular. This spring however has been so grey and rainy… I want to feel sun on my skin, have a picnic in the park, cocktails on a terrasse, eat supper on my terrasse. I’m sure you get the picture! And I guess I should be grateful that I’m not affected like some in the area have been with flooding. Still, don’t we all deserve some summer weather after going through a long winter? Plus, I’m concerned how this affects local farming 😦 Here’s to hoping summer hits us with its sunny skies and steamy heat!

RECIPE

1 bunch rhubarb, pink parts of the stalk sliced 1 inch thick

1/4 – 1/2 cup sugar

1 vanilla bean, split and scraped

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INSTRUCTIONS

Place rhubarb, sugar and vanilla bean and seeds in a saucepan and cover. Let sit for 1 hour or so until rhubarb is soft. Turn on stove to medium and heat rhubarb mixture until simmering. Reduce heat to medium-low and stir occasionally until mixture resembles a compote. Remove from heat and let cool. Store in airtight container in fridge up t 1 month. Serve on ice cream, yogurt or alone. Enjoy!

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