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Making Memories in Manitoulin – at it again!

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I'm up working in Little Current again for the next 5 weeks. Thought I'd take the opportunity to share what I'm making with you while I'm here.


I had asked them to put a couple of things in the fridge for me before I arrived as I'd have the rug rat with me and she's not very portable. I wanted to be sure I'd be able to feed her a little something after we got off the ferry. A couple of nice fresh eggs fried up with some old cheddar and a bit of kimchi (brought that along with me).


She managed to hang on to a bottle while I made her dinner for her.


Took Andie's advice and found a Senseo coffee maker at a thrift store for a couple of dollars. With the addition of a Coffee Duck to hold the grounds it was the perfect way to make a quick cup.


I was on call the day after I got here - so needed to bake a little something to take. Discovered that I had no flour in the cupboard (5 bins of stuff in the cupboard - no all purpose), but I did have some whole wheat atta flour (semolina flour) that I had brought along - so used that. So butterscotch squares with atta flour - quite satisfactory!


So Saturday I finally got a chance to head out and procure some necessities. I hit the farmer's market in town where I got rye flour, red fife flour, rolled oats and whole spelt as well as some garlic scapes.

A trip out to Max Burt's farm yielded a nice little strip loin and a couple of packages of pork chops. I also grabbed some maple syrup from him.

At the market the vendor who grows strawberries had run out - so I went out to their farm later in the day and picked up a basket.

Some pumpkin seeds for bread and picked up the thyme that one of the nurses had brought from her garden for me to add to mine.


I brought a few things like thai basil and mojito mint that I knew I'd have trouble finding here - got them all planted up. Realize that I need to get someone to bring me some parsley as well! Looks like all the herbs worth buying have been bought up already.


Gotta love wild iris.

Anyway - off to take a fish hook out of someones finger - when I return I'll put up the pictures of the strawberry balsamic breakfast cake from Food 52.

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I had such tasty strawberries that I decided to make the Strawberry Balsamic and Olive Oil Breakfast cake.


Lay out the berries in formation.


Pour over the white balsamic reduction.



Carefully pour on the batter.



Turn out on a plate.

The strawberry topping was stellar - the cake kinda sucked. I didn't have regular cake and pastry flour - just the self raising type. I added some lemon oil to the batter but even that didn't save it. Next time I'll try a tried and true coffee cake batter.

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I was anxious to try making crispy duck - I had found a box of water chestnut starch before coming up - so I brought a frozen utility duck I had as part of the 'ice' in my cooler. Over the past couple of days I sous ved half of it and steamed the other half.

Report here.

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Let's see - what else have I been up to? I got up here with 15 kg of chocolate and discovered there was already almost that much still here. So I'll have to get to work getting rid of it so I don't have to lug it back home again.


I know this looks like a dog's breakfast - but it was quite popular at work today - a bark made with freeze dried corn kernals and Penzey's dried roasted red pepper. Succotash bark.


Milk chocolate, feuilletine and peanut powder.


Also today I made some creme brulee in the Sous Vide Magic - just sealed the mixture into a Lekue silicone bag, clipped to the side of the container and cooked for about 90 minutes at 80º C. Poured into ramekins when done.

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You are so adventurous!

What do you do with garlic scapes? They had them in all the markets here, too.

Haven't decided what I'll do with these ones yet - in the past I've cooked them with eggs. Always looking for suggestions.

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I took about half the scapes and roasted them with olive oil and some kosher salt. The other half are going into a boiled then sautéed potato side that I'll make for dinner using the duck fat I have left over from the crispy duck.


Tempered up a bit of dark chocolate to dip these giant strawberry marshmallows I found at the grocery store.


With the remaining I made some bark with feuilletine and pistachio.


I froze a bunch of the strawberries the other day and used them today to make River Cafe's Strawberry Sorbet from Food 52.

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The doc on call today is someone I work with down south - so she would be stuck in the hospital all day and night if I didn't give her the chance to escape for a couple of hours for dinner. We had the Max Burt pork chops - cooked sous vide for a couple of hours at 60º C then a minute or so on a hot BGE. Some asparagus, also cooked on the BGE and little new potatoes boiled then cooked in duck fat with some scapes. Those crispy little scape bits are very tasty!

For dessert - creme brulee sans brulee and topped with a little scoop of the strawberry sorbet.

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All ready for work tomorrow.


Hermit like cookies for rounds. For rounds l prefer something that can be eaten one handed.


For the clinic - some potato cheese bread with the addition of some of the Penzey's dried roasted red peppers. This is a sample loaf - I want to make this for the next eggfest in August in Niagara. Curious to see if I need to reconstitute the red peppers or if adding them to the dough dry will be sufficient.

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That bread sounds tasty. So does that strawberry balsamic cake. I'm going to cause all of our fellow Canadians to mentally throw rotten tomatoes at me... but I'm not a fan of poutine. :shock:

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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I've had one truly great poutine in my life - in Quebec - perfect crispy fries, squeaky curds - all the rest have been pale imitations - but hope springs eternal!

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I've had one truly great poutine in my life - in Quebec - perfect crispy fries, squeaky curds - all the rest have been pale imitations - but hope springs eternal!

Maybe I just need to try a really good one. I'm not a fan of gravy on fries, with or without the cheese, but there's a very good possibility that I've just never tried a truly well made poutine. I'm going to check the store for that balsamic the cake calls for but, after reading your comments on the cake, I may sub my own olive oil cake for the cake part.

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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I've had one truly great poutine in my life - in Quebec - perfect crispy fries, squeaky curds - all the rest have been pale imitations - but hope springs eternal!

Maybe I just need to try a really good one. I'm not a fan of gravy on fries, with or without the cheese, but there's a very good possibility that I've just never tried a truly well made poutine. I'm going to check the store for that balsamic the cake calls for but, after reading your comments on the cake, I may sub my own olive oil cake for the cake part.

The President's Choice brand makes a white balsamic that it calls 'white balsamic condiment'.

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So glad you are in Manitoulin, always great to see all you cook and bake while you are there. Will Anna be joining you? I think it has been awhile since you posted a photo of your daughter, she looks so much taller.

The strawberry sorbet looks great, may try that recipe soon.

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Four dozen more eggs today picked up from our public health nurse Tish. Interesting the colour differences in both the shells and the yolks. The green eggs have the most golden yolks.

I've finished off the better part of two dozen since I got here on Thursday.

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Im interested in those eggs:

1) assuming that the chickens more or less eat the same sorts of things

do the different eggs taste different? from time to time I get a 'commercial' egg that tastes 'very eggy'

cant describe that any better, but it has a wonderful intense flavor. Ive assumed this flavor is in the yolk.

I used to get it frequently of all places at Safeway in California in their Jumbo eggs. Im of the understanding that the jumbo eggs come from older chickens.

people who raise chickens and use their eggs claim its the feed. that would make some sense but I cant believe Safeway Jumbos ( just a few now ) eat anything different that some commercial feed.

and I cant imagine Safeway contracts out to different breeds.

so .... any of those eggs 'extra eggy'

growing up we had a few chickens and id go out to get my eggs for breakfast evey day. had a lot of eggy ones then

its a taste you do not forget. which I had them more often. rare to never on eggs at the local large markets, and rare with 'free-range' organics at the local organic farm.

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Jeffery Steingarten (i think it was him) tested organic/free range eggs vs supermarket in proper blinded fashion...no difference detected. Of course that conclusion applies only to the eggs he tested and cannot be universalized.

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I'd say the green eggs with the dark yokes are definitely eggier. I think though it's clearly breed specific - as all her chickens are being fed the same diet.

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It's great to be able to follow your food adventures in Manitoulin again.

Just out of curiosity, how many hours a day do you devote to cooking projects? The amount of stuff you produced in just a day or two is quite impressive already!

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this is what Ive always thought .....

so Safeway has a few 'ringers' in their Jumbo Squad?

like to see some genetic engineering to get that gene to move around to my Market


then again, that eggy-ness is something you cant miss when you taste it


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