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What to Cook at Home During Isolation

Updated: Apr 19

Over the past few weeks in Canada and around the world, stricter social distancing rules have been implemented to avoid the spread of COVID-19. Being stuck inside without a regular routine can be frustrating, and boring, among other things. But a positive aspect of this increase of free time is the ability to cook more! If you’re not sure where to start or want some extra inspiration, we’ve got your back. Keep reading for VIP recipes straight from our chef’s kitchens to yours.


For a flavourful, comforting dinner:


Za’atar Chicken with Garlic Yogurt Sauce

By Chef Kris Gaudet



Photo courtesy of the chef.


Ingredients

  • 4 Chicken thighs

  • 2 Onions, spanish, cut in 1” wedges

  • 2 Garlic, heads, halved crosswise

  • 2 Garlic, cloves

  • 1 Lemon, quartered, seeds removed

  • (As Needed) Salt, coarse

  • (As Needed) Black pepper, freshly ground

  • 1\3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • 1 1\2 CupsGreek Yogurt, plain

  • 3 Tbsp. Za’atar Spice Blend

  • 1 Tsp. Coriander, ground

  • 1 Tsp. Lemon, zest

  • 1 Tsp. Lime, zest

Method

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Arrange chicken thighs, onions, garlic halves and lemon quarters in baking dish/roasting pan.

2. Pour oil and season with salt and pepper. Coat all ingredients.

3. Roast for approximately 50 minutes. Internal temperature must reach 175 degrees F.

4. Meanwhile, grate one garlic clove in a small bowl, add yogurt, salt and pepper, with a splash of water to loosen sauce.

5. Remove pan from oven, discard everything but the chicken thighs.

6. Increase oven temperature to 400 degrees F to crisp the skin. Approx. 7 minutes.

7. Add pan drippings with Za’atar seasoning, lemon zest, lime zest, salt and pepper.

8. Rub mixture on chicken thighs.

9. Serve with Garlic Yogurt Sauce and Lemon or chopped Parsley.

Chef’s Tips

This dish is best served with Basmati Rice. Try adding orange juice and spices such as coriander to the rice cooking liquid, to add more flavour to your meal. Remember, always season your food with salt and pepper.

Za’atar Seasoning is a blend of Sumac, Thyme, Marjoram, Oregano and Sesame Seeds. It is a popular blend used in many Middle Eastern countries. It can be found in Middle Eastern grocery stores or the International aisle at your local grocery store.


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For a fresh seafood experience:


Crusted Halibut

by Chef Scott Brown



YIELD: 4 servings

TIME: 20-25 minutes

OVEN: 425 F

* Caesar dressing provides several functions for this recipe:

  • Flavor component – Garlicky, lemony full of umami!

  • Moisture- keeps the fish moist and flavorful

  • Adhesive- helps the crust stick to the fish nicely.


Ingredients

4 x 6 oz Haddock fillets

Juice of half a lemon

1/2 cup Caesar dressing


Crust

½ cup Panko Bread crumbs

1 tsp Sesame seeds

1 Tbsp Hemp seeds

1 Tbsp Sunflower seeds

1 Tbsp Pumpkin seeds

¼ cup roasted seaweed wafer snacks, cut into thin strips (optional)

½ tsp Smoked Paprika

½ tsp Garlic powder

½ tsp Onion Powder

¼ tsp Black pepper

Salt to taste


Method


1. Make your crust by combining all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl, mixing well to incorporate all ingredients.

2. Drizzle your haddock fillets with lemon juice. Smear a tsp of Caesar dressing on the top of each fillet ensuring you cover it completely on the top side.

3. Dip that Caesar side of the fish in the crust, patting it down gently, to ensure that the fish is fully covered in the crust on that side.

4. Place the fish, crust side up on a well oiled baking pan. Bake at 425F on your middle oven rack for 10 minutes, or until the haddock is 140F internal temperature.


Chef's Tips:


1. If you like a crisper crust, simply turn the broiler on your oven for the last 2-3 minutes.

2. Replace seeds with your favorite nuts like sliced almonds, chopped walnuts, etc.

3. Add your favorite herbs to the crust or the dressing to customize the flavor to your liking.


*More of a visual learner? Check out Chef Scott's how-to recipe video on Instagram.


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For a gourmet dessert:


Chocolate Hazelnut Mousse

by ChefT (Terry Rust)



Photo courtesy of the chef.


1) The Mousse


Ingredients

  • • 8 ounces (8 squares) semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

  • • 1/2 cup (divided) water

  • • 2 tablespoons butter (no substitutes!)

  • • 1 recipe - 3 egg yolks

  • • 2 tablespoons sugar

  • • 1 1/4 cups whipping cream, whipped


Method


1. In a microwave or double boiler, heat chocolate, 1/4 cup water and butter until the chocolate and butter are melted. Cool for 10 minutes.

2. In a small heavy saucepan, whisk egg yolks, sugar and remaining water. Cook and stir over low heat until mixture reaches 160 degrees F, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat; whisk in chocolate mixture.

3. Set the saucepan in ice and stir until cooled, about 5-10 minutes. Fold in whipped cream. Spoon into dessert dishes. Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.




2) Mascarade of Berries


Ingredients

  • 2 pints of your favourite berries

  • 60ml of mint

  • 30ml of Vanilla

  • 60ml of Brown Sugar


Place all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well but be careful not to crush the tender berries (such as raspberries). Place in a container in the fridge to cool. Garnish when serving.


3) Coconut Sauce


Ingredients

  • 400ml Coconut Milk

  • 30ml Cornstarch

  • 15ml Vanilla

  • 60ml Icing Sugar


Place all ingredients in a heavy bottom pot. Use whisk to mix ingredients. Place on medium high heat. Using a rubber spatula, stir until thick. After 15-20 minutes, Once starch is cooked out, strain and let cool. Pour over the desert or serve on the side.


Hungry to learn even more about cooking at home? Check out what our CHEFtorial classes have to offer! With online cooking classes launching soon, you can learn how to make dishes from your own kitchen easier than ever. Check it out here.



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