According to Judy

Cooking Canadian: it’s local, dude!

By Judy Schultz. Today, children, a little history. Long, long ago, I had a strange job. I was a restaurant critic. The airplane had already been invented, so chefs and most of their ingredients came from far away. Germany, Scotland, Italy, anywhere but Edmonton. We didn’t have our own chefs, but we had steak houses, …

File under G

By Judy Schultz. On a lovely June morning, the gods of organization dropped me on my head. It was a Friday, and I was making a batch of Madhur Jaffrey’s delicious appetizer shrimp thingies, when I was waylaid by a missing ingredient: two teaspoons garam masala. Normally, I run an organized kitchen. Organization is the …

Have cookbooks, will travel

By Judy Schultz. Some travellers bring back cuckoo clocks or big Mexican sombreros. For me, it’s cookbooks. The trouble is, books weigh a lot. And these days, the friendly skies aren’t so friendly about overweight bags. Every fall, we pack up and move to a sandbar in the Tasman Sea, taking along cookbooks I can’t …

And fish for all

By Judy Schultz. After a dozen trips to New Zealand, I finally get it. When you live on a couple of islands with more than 15,000 kilometres of coastline, you’ll want to eat fish. Lots of it. Which is how we end up at the Auckland Seafood School, where I manage to break a wine …

Jacqueline Jacek, Cocoanista

As the Canada goose flies, it’s more than 12,000 kilometres from 406 Kaska Road, in chilly Sherwood Park, to these balmy Pacific islands of New Zealand. Why, then, would a smart girl from Legal, after 11 years in New Zealand, choose to come back to Alberta winters? To make chocolates, of course. As the old …

Suzy’s Party: A Christmas Tale

And so it is Christmas, as the song says. There’s another song that goes, “Wasn’t That a Party?” The party I remember was at my friend Suzy’s house, this time last year. She’s the friend who can hold a party in a broom closet, except the broom closet (and all the other closets) were full …

What the Truck? Street food pulls ahead of the pack

In 2012, the trendiest business in the world — the food biz — has gone into overdrive. Suddenly, food trucks are legal, they’re hot, and they’re everywhere. We’ve all seen the whack of kitchens-on-wheels and pop-up eateries around town this summer, with vendors tweeting locations and crowds of happy eaters calling for more. Their advent …

Spies, lies and video tape

Good food used to be a reason to celebrate. It was the universal comforter, the ultimate peacemaker. Now, thanks to reality television, food is war. And war, as we know, is hell. Reality TV wasn’t bad enough with Big Brother and the godawful Housewives of Wherever? There wasn’t enough backstabbing, scheming and rotten behavior? I …

Snails for Sale

Our rosemary hedge is being visited by helix aspera. Snails. Escargots. Petit-gris, the elegant mollusk beloved of Frenchmen who walk around with garlic butter dribbled on their shirts. In this climate, rosemary grows into a massive shrub, and ours is two metres high. Snail heaven. Not far south of here, a farming family produces free-range …

I’m Dreaming of a Retro Christmas

On the verge of celebrating our first Canadian Christmas in eight years, I’m making up for lost meals. I won’t be contributing my usual potato salad to Christmas-on-the-beach. This year, let there be winter food. Turkey. It’s the only bird that matters. Forget roast beast (apologies to the Grinch), nor will I be cooking a …