ROTW August 12th – Greek yogurt chocolate zucchini cake

This week’s news headlines have been dominated by stories of Trump and Kim Jong-un, their alleged threats towards each other, and predictions on the likelihood of nuclear war. In Africa, President Zuma narrowly survived a vote-of-no-confidence in South Africa and Jomo Kenyatta was re-elected for another term as president in Kenya. From the Middle East, the usual tales of woe and oppression trickle in, with their usual hopeless titles. But for farmers and gardeners in southwest BC, these distant whispers of continued autocracy or war on a potentially apocalyptic scale have been overshadowed by an encroaching threat of much more immediate menace: the zucchini plant.

ROTW August 5th – BC Bounty Salsa

Choosing this week’s recipe was hard. We’ve hit that point where everything is in season. Beans are growing four inches every day, tomatoes are ripening overnight, the Okanagan is its own horn of plenty, and backyard herb gardens are finally exploding. As you pack your bag or car for a long weekend on the beach, or start throwing together appies for tonight’s barbecue, think about dodging the Costco-sized salsa that for some reason never goes bad and making your own. Plump tomatoes and sweet peaches are the perfect combo, and nothing beats loading up a tortilla chip with fresh cilantro and lime. At the cabin, one batch of this lasts minutes (so don’t be afraid to scale up as needed).

ROTW July 29th – Greek Tzatziki

Makes 1 cup.

1 cup plain Greek yoghurt (if using 0%, consider adding a splash of whipping cream or coffee cream to give your tzatziki some extra depth)
1 medium garlic clove, minced as fine as possible (use a microplane if you have one)
2 tablespoons chopped dill
3 inches long English cucumber
1/4 teaspoon salt, plus a little for the cucumber

‘A day in the life’ with Friesen Farm

As a small step towards unveiling what goes on behind the scenes on Market Day, I joined Ann Friesen in the wee hours of the morning to help pack, load, unload, and sell. When I first approached her about writing this piece back in May, Ann laughed and gave me a look that could only be read as  ‘who are you and do you know what you’re getting into.’ I assured her that yes, I seriously wanted to come to her farm, before the crack of dawn, and be part of the whole market process. ‘Fine,’ she answered, ‘but you have to come in July when there’s more produce. If you’re going to do this, you have to do it when it counts.’

Focus on the farm: Chubby Roots

Nestled under the Chilliwack mountains, in plain sight for happy day-trippers on their way to Cultus Lake, lies the Yarrow Ecovillage, a bundle of colourful houses, gardens and organic farms. This small community, easily missed by those not looking (as well as those who are, myself included) is home to Thu Nghiem and Vu Hau of Chubby Roots, whose current projects actualize an innate desire to produce and to share.

ROTW July 22nd – Green bean and hemp seed pesto

This nut- and dairy-free pesto is the recipe I’ve always wanted and only just developed. With beans to bulk things out, you don’t need as much basil as a regular pesto and end up with a sweeter taste and slightly creamier texture.

ROTW July 15th – Basic Buckle

I am not a cake eater. And by cake I mean any of the dry-vanilla, too-chocolatey, sickeningly-sweet-carrot, or artificially-dyed-red-velvet varieties which commonly grace the birthday table and find their way into kids’ schoolrooms in cupcake form. Cake’s uninspiring texture and its habit of leaving a filmy coating of sugar along your gumline just don’t do it for me.

ROTW July 8th – Crispy Zucchini Bake

A recipe to use those first little zucchinis popping up at the Market (or maybe in your garden) while they’re at their freshest and most flavourful. A couple of slices of torn up bread, splashed in olive oil and sprinkled in parmesan, makes for a crouton-y top that can’t be resisted.

Three 15-minute summer meals that don’t need a recipe

No one wants to make dinner in summer. When you’ve just come in from a hard hike, taking the dog to the park, or sunbathing in the backyard because it’s too hot to do anything more, turning on the oven is the last thing you want.

That said, if you’ve been outside all day in the heat, you still need dinner. You want something not too heavy, but rich in the vitamins and minerals you’ve lost sweating. If you’ve been hiking, swimming or playing sports, you’ll also want to replenish on carbohydrates.

A keep-it-simple menu for Canada Day

Our Canada Day barbecue menu is as simple as simple can be. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. Done right, you can’t beat a homemade burger, picnic-style salads, and a dessert of berries and cream. Don’t worry if you’ve never made your own burgers or feel daunted by the thought of boiling and peeling all those eggs for a potato salad. We’ve got you covered. Because Canada only turns 150 once and you want to spend your long weekend having fun, not whipping egg whites into oblivion for the perfectly moussey dessert.

Go-to oat sandwich buns

A versatile, multi-use bun that’s crisp and steamy when eaten straight from the oven, and that keeps a light, chewy centre for days. Use them for sandwiches, burgers, toasting or for tearing into when there’s nothing else around to eat.

Dilly grated cucumber and carrot coleslaw

Looking for one more quick side for your long weekend barbecues? Look no further. Grab a bowl and grater, flick on the coffee-maker and get started. You’ll be finished by the time your coffee is brewed.