Celebrate fall flavours with chef’s harvest menu

by Mary Bailey

The best thing about fall is the fruit and veg. Really, all those brilliantly coloured carrots and russety apples and cauliflower and cabbages—from something that fits into the palm of your hand to orbs the size of your head. They are all at their best in the fall. And, let’s not forget it’s turkey season.

Glazed Carrots in Beef Stock with Swiss Chard, Cayenne and Hemp Seeds
Glazed Carrots in Beef Stock with Swiss Chard, Cayenne and Hemp Seeds, Blair Lebsack photo

Glazed Carrots in Beef Stock with Swiss Chard, Cayenne and Hemp Seeds

“Carrots are a harvest staple and I wanted to tailor them to a side dish that is packed with the flavours reminiscent of a Sunday roast. I started by using beef tallow instead of oil or butter. The long cook in beef tallow pulls out those roasted beef flavours and even the aroma makes you feel like a roast is in the oven. Beef stock also helps build this flavour. For added freshness I added Swiss chard, cayenne and herbs. This side dish is great on its own or you can grill a piece of locally-raised beef to have with it.” –Blair Lebsack, RGE Rd.

8-10 medium-sized carrots
½ bunch Swiss chard (about 3-4 pc)
1 fresh cayenne pepper
4 sprigs lemon-thyme
10 sprigs fresh chive
2 T hemp seed hearts
5 T beef tallow
2 c beef stock
3 t Riesling vinegar
salt to taste, and finish with Maldon salt for crunch

Wash all vegetables and herbs. Cut carrots in half lengthwise.

Separate the chard stems from leaves. Thinly slice the leaves and put in a heat proof bowl or dish (not plastic). Thinly slice the chard stems and set aside in prep bowl.

Thinly slice the cayenne pepper, add to the chard greens bowl.

Pull the thyme leaves off 2 sprigs and leave the other 2 sprigs intact.

Thinly slice chives and put chives and thyme leaves in another prep bowl.

Warm 2 cups beef stock in small pot.

In a large pan, add 4 T beef tallow and warm. Just as beef tallow melts, add carrots in single layer on wider, or flat side to the pan. Add the thyme to the pan. Turn the heat up to medium and cook for 12-15 minutes until golden brown or just a bit darker. You may need to shuffle carrots from the side to the centre of the pan to brown them all. Season with a little salt.

Pour half of the beef fat used to cook the carrots over the chard leaves, then put the carrots back onto the heat. Add ¾ cup of stock to carrots and bring to a simmer.

While carrots are cooking stir, half the vinegar into the chard leaves and season with salt. Stir, taste, add more salt if necessary. Put the chard aside until the carrots are finished.

Carrots will cook for about eight minutes in beef stock. They will start to absorb beef stock and become sticky and glazed (if the stock has absorbed, add the remaining stock). Remove the thyme sprigs. When carrots have a nice glaze, add Swiss chard stems, other half of the vinegar and the chive mixture to the carrots. Cook for 1 more minute, turn off heat. Add remaining 1 tablespoon of beef tallow, stir into the sauce, add a nice pinch of Maldon to the carrots and finish glazing carrots by spooning remaining sauce all the carrots.

To plate, put half of the chard leaves onto the plate, pile the carrots on top and drizzle with excess glaze from the pan. Add remaining Swiss chard and then sprinkle hemp seed hearts over the dish.

Serves 6-8 as a side dish.

Aloo-Gobi Damini Mohan photo

Aloo-Gobi (Pan-Roasted Potato and Cauliflower)

“This dish is a staple in my household. We usually eat it with daal and roti or paratha (flatbreads).” –Damini Mohan, Mini Kitchen

2 T ghee/ butter or any neutral oil
1 T ginger (finely diced)
1 T garlic (finely diced)
1 jalapeño (medium, de-seeded if you don’t like the heat)
1 t paprika
1 t cumin powder
1 t fenugreek seeds, powdered (these seeds get bitter very fast, so powdering is the safest way of using them)
1 t turmeric powder
½ t black pepper
2 potatoes (medium, diced in ½-inch sections)
1 cauliflower (medium, cut the florets, dice the stem in ½-inch sections)
cilantro or mint, juice of ½ lime for garnish

In a thick-bottomed pan or wok, heat the ghee over medium heat.

Once the ghee is warm, add ginger, garlic and jalapeño and sauté to release the flavours in the oil. Add the dry spices, then immediately add the potatoes. Mix. Add half the salt. Let the potatoes cook low and slow. Once the potatoes are semi-softened, add diced cauliflower stems. Once both the potatoes and cauliflower stems are softened, add the cauliflower florets and mix. We usually like the cauliflower crunchy so we cook it for around 5 minutes but roast the cauliflower as per your liking. Finish with the remainder of salt, lime juice and cilantro.

Turkey Schnitzel with Autumn Slaw
Ryan Hotchkiss, Bündok

4 thin slices turkey breast
2 eggs
½ c flour
150 g panko breadcrumbs (use gluten-free panko if desired)
pinch salt
pinch black pepper
pinch cayenne
oil as needed for frying

Lay plastic wrap on the counter, butcher block or a sturdy table. Place the turkey breast pieces on the plastic wrap with about 3 inches in every direction between breast. Pound the meat until quite thin.

Place salt and pepper in flour. Dip the breasts in flour, egg, then breadcrumb.

Heat oil until hot but not smoking, place breast in until golden brown and flip over. Repeat until golden brown. Serve with a side of the autumn slaw.

Autumn Slaw

½ head savoy cabbage, thinly sliced
1 apple, thinly sliced or julienned
1 sm kohlrabi, peeled, thinly sliced or julienned
½ c toasted walnuts
salt to taste


1 c canola oil
1/3 c apple cider vinegar
1 T grainy Dijon mustard
pinch salt
1 t honey
1 leaf sage, chopped fine

Combine all the vinaigrette ingredients in a blender (or use an immersion blender).

To serve: Combine all slaw ingredients and dress with vinaigrette. Season to taste. Serve with the schnitzel.

Serves 4.

Apple Pudding

“These pudding cakes are so delicious, it’s a bit like pudding underneath with cake on top. This makes the most of fall fruit from the Okanagan.” –Kaelin Whittaker, Awn Kitchen

4-6 apples or pears (depending on size)
125 g flour
2 t baking powder
½ t salt
125 g granulated sugar
200 g full-fat milk
75 g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 lg egg
75 g dark brown sugar
2 T golden syrup

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Butter a 9×9 baking dish well and fill ½ with peeled and sliced apples or pears.

Mix the flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, milk, melted butter and egg. Whisk together using a hand mixer for 2-3 minutes until pale in colour. Pour over the apples or pears.

Place the brown sugar and syrup into a small saucepan with 125g of water. Slowly dissolve the sugar before turning up the heat and bringing the syrup to the boiling point. Pour over the batter—it will be thin and might seem like you’re doing something wrong, but I promise it’s right!

Bake for 35-40 minutes until the apples are tender and the cake is golden. Leave to cook for 10 minutes, serve warm with softly whipped cream.