Monthly Archives: January 2013

Mmmm! Blue Cheese and Port

summary: Various Blue cheeses including St. Agur; late bottled vintage Port; Fruit Cake gets a bad rap; (click on image(s) to see larger views and more photos)

First of all, many thanks to my sister for taking over with the annual fruit cake production! The cake is easily as good as Mum’s always was. And Mum’s fruit cake was always stellar.
The slices of cake pictured here are from last year’s cake. (We’re keeping this year’s cake in its tin until next year. Aged fruit cake is really the best, don’t you think?)

blue cheese I cannot fathom why it is that people turn their noses up at fruit cake. I adore it. Well, I adore Mum’s fruit cake anyway.

My favourite way to eat it is thinly sliced with cheese. Shaved parmesan, aged gouda and sharp cheddar all work beautifully.

The practice of combining cheese, fruit, and nuts dates back to ancient times. These were often served at the end of a meal because they were thought to aid in digestion.

– Food Timeline: History Notes

Ha! It never occurred to me to be thinking of my digestion! I just think that it tastes good.

The other day, I talked about putting apple pie and cheese on the same plate. As always, from some quarters it has been met with skepticism, with comments ranging from “ewwww” to “hmmm, interesting”. And almost always a reluctance to try it.

And yet once tried, there’s no turning back.

As fabulous as apple pie with cheddar is, we discovered something even more fabulous this Christmas: thinly sliced pieces of fruit cake with blue cheese. Oh my! (continue reading )

Experimenting with Truffle-infused Oil

summary: We have wonderful friends; truffle-infused oil is great with mushrooms; sprouts are easy to grow and perfect for garnishing (click on image(s) to see larger views and more photos)

La Tourangelle truffle-infused oil We have the best friends! This is one of the Christmas presents they gave us: La Tourangelle White Truffle Infused Sunflower Oil. It is phenomenally good and the tiniest amount makes ordinary mushrooms taste like truffles. Now we can have “truffle” omelettes whenever we want.

La Tourangelle White Truffle Oil begins with Organic Sunflower oil, which is slowly infused with white truffle aroma following a 150-year-old French tradition. […] Just like the most prestigious perfumes, the white truffle aroma is very rare, expensive and difficult to source. Only a few companies master the art of producing the aroma. We infuse the aroma in Organic Sunflower Oil because of its great properties and its neutral flavor that won’t interfere with the aroma like olive oil may do.

Shelf life
Unopened: 12-month shelf life
Opened: best used within 6 months

La Tourangelle | Infused White Truffle Oil (

(continue reading )

It’s Pie Day – does you know wear you’re mittens are?

summary: Today is Pie Day! Where are your mittens? Apple pie made with red wine and cheddar cheese crust; Adding spelling mistakes might up the comment count – thank you, Brian Gordon; (click on image(s) to see larger views and more photos)

apple pie It’s Pie Day today!!

No, not Pi Day. That’s not until March. This is actual Pie Day.

Does you know wear you’re mittens are?

I no wear mine are…. :-) (And Know. I don’t knead no spell-check)

apple pie We got the idea for this pie from the wonderful article “Home for the Holidays” by Roberta Corradin published in SAVEUR Magazine #134. The recipe that she and her mother use for their pie is here: Torta di Sant’Antonio (Sant’Antonio Apple Tart).

We only loosely followed the recipe by reducing some Sangiovese and then tossing it into the sliced apples before adding them to a cheddar cheese pie crust. The crust was just regular pastry with some grated cheddar cheese thrown in.

I must say, it was pretty spectacular pie. We really should make it again. (continue reading )

Experimenting with Camelina Oil

summary: Have you tried Camelina Oil? It’s fine with bread but maybe not so fine in other things; (click on image to see larger views and more photos)

camelina oil We’ve been experimenting with different oils.

Last fall, at the same store where we bought the Sarafino olive oil, we stopped at a vendor’s display of Camelina Oil.

Camelina oil? What’s that?!

Camelina oil’s flavour can be described as earthy, nutty and natural. The oil best complements root vegetables and gamey meats including elk, bison, lamb and duck, but the possibilities and combinations are truly endless. The oil blends brilliantly with other flavours: bonding with other flavours rather than losing its own unique characteristics or overpowering other ingredients. […] Camelina’s versatility is also reflected in its ability to hold up in the cold, ensuring that your marinades don’t congeal in the fridge, as well as the heat, with a smoke point of 475°F!

Three Farmers Camelina Oil | Recipes & More (

To me, Camelina oil tastes quite grassy – with a hint of mustard and maybe a little mud mixed in. I confess that I don’t love it. But T does. And he decided that he wanted to try making ice cream with it.

Yes, you heard me right. Ice cream.

Ice cream??? (continue reading )

savoury fantans are good too

BBB: Let's Get Baking summary: Mmmmm, Garlic Fantans; information about BBB; submission for YeastSpotting and Bake Your Own Bread; (click on images to see larger views and more photos)

For some bizarre reason, it didn’t occur to me until a couple of days ago that fantans would be great as garlic bread!

Fantans Now why is this fantan sticking its tongue out?? Does it not like garlic? Or is it saying “nyah nyah… see? the layers stayed intact!”?

Instead of using the BBB fantan dough recipe that called for a starter and also contained sugar and egg, I decided to roughly follow our naan recipe – replacing the butter with olive oil and adding a small amount of ground flax seed. (continue reading )