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5 steps to the perfect pancake

Chatelaine | posted Monday, Oct 19th, 2015


Want fluffy, delicious pancakes every time? Follow these five key steps:

1. Stop stirring
Stir pancake batter as few times as possible, preferably using a folding technique and a rubber spatula. No whisks please! Leave a few lumps or streaks of flour in the batter. You’re trying to avoid activating the leaveners (baking soda and powder) in the mixing bowl so they can do their fluffy work in the pan instead.

2. Forget about chocolate chips
Kids and adults love them, but chocolate chips in the batter are just going to burn in the pan. For a better, way more gourmet option, use a vegetable peeler to shave shreds of dark chocolate (from a high-quality bar) over the pancakes after they are cooked. Or go totally wild and make ganache to drizzle overtop (Warning: Your family will go bonkers and demand it with everything).

3. Don’t pan-ic
Non-stick or well-seasoned cast iron pans are both good options. Get the pan hot (a drop of water should sizzle and evaporate in a few seconds), then barely coat the bottom with canola oil (you thought I was going to say butter, didn’t you? Well, butter burns. Save it for smearing over cooked pancakes).

4. Don’t flip twice
Unless you want flat, dense, batter-pucks, flip pancakes just once. Pour in the batter, wait until the surface is covered with bubbles, then flip. Cook until the tops of the pancakes aren’t shiny anymore, then they’re ready. Serve and eat immediately for best results!

5. The Pancake Principle
It’s a universal truth: The first batch is always a dud. The pan is either too hot, too cool or just not “into it” yet. I save this batch for later in the day when I’m jonesing for a snack and prepared to eat anything (cold pancake with peanut butter = yum!).

Try these tricks out at home with our best pancake recipes!

Crocktober: Slow Cooker Range Chili

BT Calgary | posted Friday, Oct 16th, 2015

This chili contains beef, pork and bison, making it a great chili to serve to meat lovers.


  • ​3 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp caraway seed
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 lb (0.5 kg) boneless beef chuck steak, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 lb (0.5 kg) boneless pork shoulder roast, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1/2 lb (0.25 kg) bison sirloin steak, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup chopped bacon
  • 2 cans (28 oz/796 mL each) whole tomatoes
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 1 can (5 1/2 oz/156 mL) tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrot
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 10 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp thyme, crumbled
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 cans (19 oz/540 mL each) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 tbsp packed golden brown sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground pepper


  1. Combine chili powder, paprika, oil, caraway seed, dry mustard, garlic powder, allspice and cayenne pepper in a large non-reactive bowl.
  2. Add beef, pork, bison and bacon; toss to coat meat with seasoning mixture. Add tomatoes, onions, tomato paste, carrot, yellow pepper, celery, garlic, thyme and bay leaves; stir to combine. May be prepared to this point, covered and refrigerated for up to 12 hours.
  3. Transfer mixture to a 6 – 6 1/2 quart slow cooker.
  4. Cover and cook on high heat setting for 1 hour.
  5. Reduce to low heat setting and continue cooking, covered, for 7 hours or until meat is tender.
  6. Uncover slow cooker. Add beans, brown sugar, salt and pepper; stir gently to combine.
  7. Cover and continue cooking on low heat setting until beans are heated through, about 15 minutes. Remove and discard bay leaves. Serves 10.
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Apple cider turkey pot pie

Chatelaine | posted Tuesday, Oct 13th, 2015



  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 cups apple cider, divided
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-in. cubes
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup 35% cream
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp dried sage
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 kg skinless, boneless turkey breast, cut into 1/2-in. cubes
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1/2 450-g pkg frozen puff pastry, preferably President’s Choice
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten


  1. PREHEAT oven to 400F.
  2. STIR cornstarch with 1/4 cup apple cider in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. COMBINE sweet potato with remaining cider and onion in a pot. Boil, covered, until potato is tender, 12 to 15 min.
  4. STIR cornstarch mixture and add to pot along with cream, Dijon, sage and salt. Stir often, until sauce thickens, 2 to 3 min. Stir in cubed turkey breast and peas.
  5. SCRAPE turkey filling into a 9×13-in. baking dish. Top with puff pastry, stretching dough to cover dish. Using the tines of a fork, press edges of dough against rim of dish, or fold into the sides. Brush egg yolk over pastry. Cut several slits in the top to let steam escape.
  6. BAKE in centre of oven until crust is golden-brown, 15 to 20 min.

Spanish-style ‘stuffing’

Cityline | posted Tuesday, Oct 6th, 2015


This recipe for stuffing cooked outside of the bird, or “dressing,” is super easy and gets its Spanish flavours from Chorizo and smoked paprika.

Spanish-style dressing

Makes approx. 6 cups (1.5 litres)
One serving = 1/2 cup (125 ml)


4 mild Chorizo sausages (if not available use spicy Italian sausage)
1 cup (250 ml) diced Spanish onion, approx. 1/2 a large Spanish onion
1/2 cup (125 ml) chopped celery
2 tbsp (30 ml) smoked paprika
6 slices stale 100 per cent whole grain whole wheat bread, cut into small cubes
2 tbsp (30 ml) currants or raisins
2 tbsp (30 ml) raw almonds, whole
1/2 cup (125 ml) lower sodium or no salt added turkey or chicken stock
1 tsp (5 ml) iodized salt


Heat a large non-stick pan over medium heat. Squeeze the sausage meat out of the casing. Break up the meat with the back of a wooden spoon. Cook until browned and cooked through.

Add onions, celery and paprika to the pan and cook over medium low heat, stirring occasionally until golden brown, approximately five minutes.

Add the bread cubes, currants and almonds. Stir until well combined.

Add chicken broth and stir in. Remove from heat.

Cut a large piece of parchment paper double the size of an 8 x 8-inch metal baking dish. Run the parchment paper under cold water, wring out any excess water, and then line the pan, making sure that there is an equal overlap on two sides.

Spoon the dressing into the pan. Fold the overlapping pieces to cover the dressing and tuck in to make a pouch

Bake at 325 F for 30 minutes. Unfold the top piece of parchment paper to open the top and bake 15 to 20 minutes or until the dressing is slightly dry.

Easiest roast turkey and gravy

Chatelaine | posted Tuesday, Oct 6th, 2015





  • Stir brown sugar and salt in a bowl. Rinse turkey and dry very well with paper towels. Place turkey in a large pan or large plastic bag, then pack brownsugar mixture all over the outside of the turkey as best you can, and place some in the cavity as well. Cover pan or tie bag, and refrigerate 12 hours or overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 450F. Rinse brine from the turkey, inside and out, gently rubbing under cold running water so it all comes off. (Don’t worry if the legs and wings look purple, which is the result of brining.) Pat dry. Stuff sage into cavity.
  • Place turkey on a rack in a roasting pan. Bend and tuck wings under the body and loosely tie drumsticks together. Brush butter all over turkey. Loosely cover with foil. Roast for 30 min. Reduce oven temperature to 325F. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 175F, about 21/2 to 31/4 hours. Remove foil during final hour of cooking.
  • Transfer turkey to a platter, tent loosely with foil and let rest at least 25 min before carving.
  • To make gravy, carefully spoon most of the fat out of the roasting pan, leaving behind about 4 tbsp fat as well as all the brown bits. Place the pan on the stove over medium and stir in flour, whisking to completely incorporate flour into drippings. Cook for 30 sec, then whisk in wine and water. Increase heat to medium-high, whisking constantly, until thickened, scraping up and incorporating all the brown bits from the pan, about 10 to 15 min. Reduce heat to low. If needed, whisk in additional water or homemade turkey stock to reach the desired consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Mushroom Chestnut Stuffing

BT Calgary | posted Monday, Oct 5th, 2015

Stuffing recipe

Mushroom Chestnut Stuffing courtesy SAIT Culinary Campus


  • 10 Cups White Bread, dice 1″
  • 8 Tbsp Butter
  • 2 Medium Onion, diced, small
  • 3 Cups Mushrooms
  • ½ Cup Sugar
  • 2 Cups Chestnuts
  • 4 Ribs Celery, diced small
  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced
  • ½ Tsp Cumin
  • ¼ Cup Sage
  • 2     Eggs, whisked
  • 2 Cups Chicken Stock
  • 1 Tsp Celery Salt
  • ½ Tsp White Pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 250°F. Slowly bake bread until slightly dried.
  2. In a sauce pan, melt butter, add sugar and allow to caramelize, add chestnuts, coat with sugar, place on tray with parchment and allow to cool.
  3. In a sauce pot, sweat onion in the ½ the butter until onions begin to caramelize. Add garlic, cook until soft.
  4. Add mushrooms, cook until tender.
  5. Add celery, cumin, celery salt and pepper, cook for 5 minutes, add sage and allow to cool.
  6. In a separate sauce pot, bring chicken stock to a simmer, cool slightly.
  7. In a large bowl, fold together the toasted bread cubes with the cooked mushroom mixture and chestnuts, then stir in the broth and then the eggs.
  8. Spread in a lightly greased 3-quart baking dish and drizzle with the additional 2 tablespoons melted butter.
  9. Heat the oven to 375°F, bake covered with aluminum foil for 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake for 15 more minutes or until top is lightly browned.



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Apple Cranberry Chutney

BT Calgary | posted Monday, Oct 5th, 2015


  • 500g Granny Smith Apples
  • 500 g Cranberries
  • 125 g Red Onion, diced small
  • 125 ml Orange Juice
  • 125 ml Cider Vinegar
  • 500 g Sugar
  • 2 Cinnamon Stick
  • 4 Tbsp Ginger, Grated
  • 125 g Dried Cranberries


  1. Put all ingredients in pot, bring to a simmer.
  2. Cook until cranberries “pop” and when liquid has reduced to a syrup.
  3. Transfer into jars and allow to cool.


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Cod cakes

Cityline | posted Tuesday, Sep 29th, 2015


Mairlyn Smith came up with this recipe after a recent trip to Newfoundland — a creative use for leftover potatoes. Plus, kids will love the mild cod flavour. Serve with tartar sauce, if desired.

Cod cakes

Makes 12 servings or 24 cod cakes


2 slices bacon, chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
2 medium onions, diced
1 1/4 lbs cooked cod to equal 2 cups (500 mL) flaked, cooked cod
2 lbs russet potatoes, about 4 large, mashed to equal 4 cups (1 L) mashed
1 tsp (5 mL) iodized salt
1/2 tsp (2 mL) pepper
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) fine bread crumbs (I used whole wheat panko.)


In a medium skillet over medium heat, fry bacon until crispy, remove from pan and drain on a paper towel.

Add onion and sauté until well browned about five to eight minutes. Add salt and pepper.

In a large bowl, mix together flaked, cooked cod, mashed potatoes and cooked onion. Crumble bacon in and lightly mix together.

Place bread crumbs into a shallow bowl.

Using a half-cup measuring cup, scoop the mixture into the cup, shake out into your hand and form into a patty.

Gently press into the breadcrumbs.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add oil. Place fish cakes into hot oil and cook over medium heat until golden to medium brown on both sides.

Courtesy Mairlyn Smith

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