Some of our Favourite Recipes

Family heirloom recipes, plus creations inspired by local or global foods, sometimes both

As jubilados (Spanish for retirees) and foodies, we frequent farmers’ market and search out creative chefs to zest up our own cooking

Ruby-flushed petioles crowned by lily-pad leaves, rhubarb announces the arrival of spring. The first fruit vegetable of the season, rushing to be ahead of asparagus, rhubarb demands to be sugared and treated as a fruit in desserts. It’s been triumphant. For a time in North America, rhubarb was called “pieplant.” I like the puckery tartness of rhubarb, the way it stays fresh tasting after cooking. So, from my favourite seventeen recipes for rhubarb, I’m sharing Rhubarb Galette, a French free-form pie, a taste sensation from the acclaimed Alice Waters of Chez Panisse restaurant in California, who has been, for fifty years, the leader of the Slow-Food farm-to-table movement.

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“One thing we would never change is macaroni and cheese,” she assures us. “Our customers demand it at every meal.” Exemplary macaroni and cheese it is: buttery noodles in a cream-smooth béchamel hefted by the ladleful from a serving pan, each portion containing a few dark orange patches of chewy Cheddar from the top of the batch.

Jane and Michael Stern, Gourmet magazine, December 1995, reviewing Beadle’s Cafeteria, including its recipe for macaroni—a classic, our favourite go-to comfort food for the last 25 years.

Macaroni. The very word, macaroni, like a mantra, calms us. Thoughts of other food vanish, overcome by desire for this simple dish. Now, right now!

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Nusfjord rorbuer (rowers’ huts), now a typical form of accommodation on Lofoten

What did Magellan and I eat a lot of in Norway?

Norwegian Arctic Cod. Skrei to the Norwegians.

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“I ran down to your place this morning and stole juniper berries from your kitchen—couldn’t find them anywhere on our way or earlier grocery travels yesterday.” Yikes, I thought when I received this message from Lynn when we were in Norway. Long overdue for a cleanup, my spice cupboard was a bit of an embarrassment. Last week in a rare burst of housecleaning energy, I tackled the job. “A good thing” as Martha would say. Three good things actually—a tidy drawer, a blog source and a new recipe.

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Are you a pasta fanatic or rice aficionado?

Either way, here’s a story for you from Valencia, Spain.

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I can’t remember seeing a Buddha’s Hand when we were in Bhutan. Or in Bangkok. Not in Japan either.

Nor do I remember noticing any in California.

Where I have found lots of them is at Whole Foods in Vancouver. Believe me, they’re worth searching for.

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