Archive for June, 2011

Foxy Ladies

This is going to be my bubbly pink patio drink this holiday weekend. Fo sho.

It’s a good thing you can’t clearly see my oh so foxy reflection in the glass, all gussied up for a Canada Day Eve night in PJ bottoms and an old shirt I only wear to bed since a slice of peanut butter toast landed goods-side-down on my chest. (Which kind of reminds me of this Flight of the Conchords video.)

Thanks to my foxy ladyfriend for sharing her Grandma’s cocktail. Partly, I’m just envious that a) her Grandma is still around, b) she lives on Galiano Island, c) her nickname is Foxy Lady and d) she thusly has a boozy pink drink named after her.

Mostly C. And A.

Gwendolyn makes hers with vodka and soda water. Gin works. Or drizzle it straight into Prosecco.

The only problem with the Foxy Lady (besides the obvious) is that it uses up your stash of rhubarb so that you may not have enough left to make pies. But you won’t be able to bake after all those foxy ladies anyway.

Really, you should know how to make rhubarb syrup whether or not there is a Foxy Lady in your future. It’s divine drizzled into soda water or ginger ale, or ice water to make rhubarbade. Next on the agenda: pink rhubarb milkshakes.

You’ll need some rhubarb. The red stuff is best. Chop it up.

Add sugar and water and simmer.

It will turn soft and mushy, at which point scrape it into a fine sieve set over a bowl and strain it.

You’ll wind up with something that resembles the juice from a maraschino cherry jar but tastes far better. Don’t toss the leftover pulp – eat it with plain yogurt and granola. Trust me on this. Or turn it into ice cream. More on that later.

Put a lid on it and keep it in the fridge. Or throw it in your bag and bring it along to that Canada Day party, with a bottle of Prosecco. I’m not against pouring it over pancakes.

Pour rhubarb syrup into a glass, top with Prosecco or ginger ale or vodka and soda water. Drink. Repeat.

Foxy Lady Rhubarb Cocktails: 1 part vodka, 2-3 parts rhubarb syrup, 1 part soda water. Tall glass + ice.

Rhubarb Syrup

Thanks to the foxiest lady I know.

4 cups chopped rhubarb
1 cup water
Sugar to taste (up to 1 cup, depending on your taste and how tart the rhubarb is)

Bring everything to a simmer in a saucepan. Cook until the fruit is very soft. Taste it and add more sugar if it needs it. As Gwendolyn says, it should be a little tart. (That is, your Foxy Lady should be a little tart. Ha!)

Set a fine strainer over a bowl, pour in the rhubarb and let it sit to drain off the liquid. Once it’s done, scoop the stewed fruit into a container and eat or refrigerate for later.

June 30 2011 | beverages | 11 Comments »

Penny’s Rhubarb Galettes

We drove out to Aldersyde this afternoon to visit Tony and Penny at Highwood Crossing Farm. W was ecstatic to have the chance to meet the very people who grow his very favourite food – oatmeal. Which he would opt for a bowl of anytime over most anything else. Tony and Penny and the friends who help them out on their farm grow oats, flax, wheat, rye and other grains in rotation, and cold press organic (non GMO) canola and flax oils. They stone grind their flour, make pancake mix and power grains – a truly whole-grain breakfast cereal made with hulled oats, millet, sunflower seeds and flax – and bake enormous batches of granola every Monday using rolled oat flakes, whole flax and sunflower seeds, cold-pressed canola oil and amber maple syrup. It was baking day today, and we could smell the granola in the oven, wafting from a little building in the field as we got out of the car.

In their house, Penny made little rhubarb galettes, from a recipe on the cover of Good to the Grain, by Kim Boyce. They were phenomenal, with a sweet-crunchy crust made with cornmeal and in Penny’s version, oat flour. Lucky for us, Smitten Kitchen posted the recipe, as did Whitney in Chicago. So if you don’t have the book, there you go. She didn’t, by the way, do the hibiscus thing. I don’t think. Penny? Are you reading this? I didn’t detect any floral notes, and I’m generally super sensitive (not in an allergy way, in a my-great-aunt-used-way-too-much-lavender-way) to flowery things in my food.

She told me she makes and freezes them unbaked, then slides them in the oven whenever she wants them. Très genius.

She also made flax muffins for W, who immediately introduced himself, with a handshake, as a scientist. Who knew? She brought out plasticine and played with him. She’s awesome that way.

He went ahead and adopted them. I would.

I do love sitting at kitchen tables – or nooks, crannies, islands – and chatting about food. Especially over food. We talked about farming and cooking and beans and organics while W inspected every square inch of their house (from the bathroom: MOM! YOU HAVE TO COME CHECK THIS OUT!), and Tony took W for a ride out to the field in a golf cart. And Penny sent us home with a homemade flax loaf. Which we ate slabs of for dinner with spinach salad and rhubarb ice cream.

And now every morning when W eats his oatmeal we’ll be able to reminisce about the nice people -Aunt Penny and Uncle Tony, right?- who grew it for him. Talk about priceless.

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June 27 2011 | bread and pie | 9 Comments »

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