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Sun-roasted carrot and chicken salad

BT Toronto | posted Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

Created and inspired by professional chef Mark McEwan for Sun Life Financial – as part of the company’s commitment to help with the prevention and management of diabetes, this recipe demonstrates that healthy meals can be easy and full of flavour.

A combination of sweet and savoury, it’s a carrot and chicken recipe loaded with crunchy bites and topped with a kick of horseradish dressing. Packed with protein and heart-healthy veggies, this salad is sure to provide you with a boost of energy.

Sun-roasted carrot and chicken salad

Prep time: 20 minutes 

Total time: 30 minutes 

Portions: 4 servings



  • 1 tbsp juice of lemon
  • 75 ml white balsamic vinegar
  • 150 ml olive oil
  • 1 tsp horseradish
  • 1 tsp grainy mustard
  • Pinch of salt 1/4 tsp pepper

Combine all ingredients and slowly stream into the oil while whisking.

Carrot Salad

  • 500 g carrots
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 250 ml avocado, sliced
  • 2 green onions
  • 12 sprigs coriander (cilantro)
  • 50 ml celery hearts

Chicken breast

  • 450 gr chicken breast
  • 2 tsp grainy mustard
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Pepper to taste

Whisk mustard, oil and seasoning in a bowl to make marinade. Coat chicken and grill. Slice when slightly cooled.


  1. Toss carrots in olive oil and salt and roast at 375F until tender (should still have a “bite” to them).
  2. Place carrots and avocado on the plate and drizzle with 2 tsp of the dressing.
  3. Place sliced chicken breast on the carrots and avocado and top with green onion, coriander sprigs and celery hearts.
  4. Drizzle on additional dressing as garnish.

Courtesy Chef Mark McEwan, @Chef_MarkMcEwan

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A healthy twist on the classic burger

BT Toronto | posted Friday, May 2nd, 2014

While the origin of the hamburger is attributed to Hamburg Germany, Canadians have adopted it as their own and Toronto is in the middle of a burger war. Whether it’s an opulent $100 Kobe creation or a cost-effective cut of street meat, locals are devouring beef patties between two buns in mass quantities.

Cher Corbin offers his take on an all-Canadian burger by keeping the meat lean and adding fresh toppings. He substitutes a creamy black bean hummus for cheese and with all that flavour we promise you won’t miss the bacon!

Healthy twists on the classic burger

Yield 6 servings


  • 1 ½ lbs. extra lean ground beef
  • 1 small shallot- minced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ tsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • ½ tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
  • ¼ cup BBQ sauce – recipe below
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ head iceberg lettuce- cut into 6 small wedges
  • 6 slices of Beef Steak Tomato
  • 3 large whole wheat Kaiser Rolls-sliced in half


  1. Combine in mixer, form patties, and grill.

Black Bean Hummus topping

  • 1 ½ cup drained, rinsed & cooked black beans
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • ½ tsp. ground cumin
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • juice from 1 lime
  • pinch of sea salt

Black Bean Hummus method

  1. Combine all of the ingredients into a small food processor and pulse lightly to incorporate all of the flavors and to form a thick hummus.

Tangy BBQ sauce ingredients

  • ½ cup minced fresh onion 3 cloves garlic- minced
  • ½ cup ketchup ½ cup tinned tomato sauce
  • ½ cup brown sugar 2 tbsp. molasses
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp. salt ½ tsp. paprika
  • ½ tsp. chili powder ¼ tsp. cracked black pepper
  • ½ tbsp. Tabasco pepper sauce ½ cup low sodium veg or chicken broth

BBQ sauce method

  1. Combine all of the ingredients for the BBQ sauce into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a low simmer and continue to cook the sauce for 20-30 minutes, be sure to stir periodically and not over heat or burn the sauce.

Courtesy Corbin Tomaszeski, @ChefCorbin

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Vikram Vij’s Indian salmon and potato cakes

BT Toronto | posted Tuesday, Apr 29th, 2014

Vikram Vij’s Indian salmon and potato cakes


  • 1 Tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1 egg
  • 1 lb fresh, wild salmon
  • a little over ½ lb russet potatoes, boiled and mashed (about 1 potato)
  • ¼ lb boiled yams, mashed (about 1 yam)
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup finely chopped onions
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped jalapeño peppers
  • ¼ to ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 ½ Tbsp garam masala or 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ajwain seeds
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • ½ cup canola oil for frying pan


  1. Lightly pound coriander seeds in a mortar or on a plate with a heavy spoon. (You just want to break the seeds in half.) Set aside.
  2. Beat eggs in a small bowl.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Immerse salmon and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, drain and allow salmon to cool. Peel off the skin.
  4. Thoroughly combine all ingredients except the oil in a large mixing bowl. With your hands, form round cakes about 2 inches in diameter and 1 inch thick. Set them on a baking tray.
  5. Heat 1 Tbsp of the oil in a shallow nonstick frying pan on high heat. Once the oil is hot, reduce the heat to medium so that the cakes don’t stick to the bottom of the pan or burn. Place 2 cakes in the pan and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn cakes over and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.The cakes should be brown and crispy on both sides.
  6. Repeat, using 1 Tbsp of oil for 2 cakes, until all cakes are cooked. Serve cakes as they cook or keep cooked cakes warm on a plate in the oven while the remaining ones are cooking.

Courtesy Vikram Vij, www.vijs.ca

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Sweet potatoes with chorizo and sour cream

BT Toronto | posted Monday, Apr 21st, 2014

Sweet potatoes go very well with chorizo sausage, cilantro, and sour cream. This recipe is very easy and if you were to pair it with a simple salad, makes for a quick weeknight meal.

Sweet potatoes with chorizo and sour cream


  • 2 large sweet potatoes, sliced in half lengthwise
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • 250 grams dry-cured spicy chorizo sausage, diced
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Brush cut side of sweet potatoes with olive oil and season with a pinch of salt. Place cut side down on parchment lined baking sheet. Bake until tender, about 40 minutes.
  3. About 10 minutes before the sweet potatoes are done roasting; heat a frying pan over medium-low heat. Add chorizo, cook and stir for 10 minutes.
  4. Top each sweet potato half with chorizo, sour cream, and cilantro. Serve immediately.

Kary’s Tips:

  • A sweet potato has finished cooking when you are able to insert the tip of small knife into the thickest part of the potato and it slides in with no resistance.
  • Green onion can be substituted for cilantro as a garnish.
  • Dry-cured spicy chorizo sausage is found at the deli counter at the grocery store, usually next to the salami.

Courtesy Kary Osmond, www.karyosmond.com

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Corned beef chowder

BT Toronto | posted Monday, Mar 10th, 2014

This hearty soup is featured on the Fionn MacCool’s Irish Menu available at all Fionn MacCool’s locations until March 23.

Corned beef chowder


  • 1 tbsp – Peanut or grape seed oil
  • 1 Vidalia onion, peeled and julienned
  • 1 tbsp – Garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp – Caraway seeds
  • 2 tbsp – White wine
  • 2 cups – Chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup – Milk
  • 4 cups – Heavy cream
  • 1 cup – Corned beef, chopped
  • ½ cup – Sauerkraut


  1. Heat oil in saucepan on medium heat. Add onions and garlic and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes.
  2. Add caraway seeds and continue sautéing for another 30 seconds.
  3. Add white wine and simmer for 2 minutes.
  4. Add stock, milk, cream and sauerkraut. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. Add chopped corned beef and continue to simmer.
  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste (adjust amount depending on how salty your corned beef is).
  7. If you like thicker chowder, mix a little cornstarch and water together and whisk into simmering soup.
  8. Ladle chowder into bowls and top with a little horseradish, croutons and green onion.

Courtesy Chef Bryan Jurek, www.fionnmaccools.com

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Rose Reisman’s miniature lasagnas

BT Toronto | posted Friday, Jan 10th, 2014

Rose Reisman’s miniature lasagnas

Makes 6 servings

Preparation time 20 minutes 

Cooking time 40 minutes 



  • 1 tsp (5 mL) vegetable oil
  • 1 cup (250 mL) diced onions
  • 1½ tsp (7.5 mL) crushed garlic
  • 6 oz (175 g) lean ground beef
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) dried basil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1¾ cups (435 mL) homemade or store-bought tomato sauce

Cheese mixture

  • 1 cup (250 mL) reduced-fat ricotta cheese (8 oz/250 g)
  • ½ cup (125 mL) grated
  • part-skim mozzarella cheese (1½ oz/45 g)
  • 1⁄3 cup (80 mL) grated Parmesan cheese (1¼ oz/40 g)
  • 1 egg
  • 3 Tbsp (45 mL) 2% milk
  • pinch of salt and pepper


  • 36 small wonton sheets
  • 1⁄3 cup (80 mL) grated part-skim mozzarella cheese (1 oz/30 g)
  • chopped fresh basil or parsley


  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with vegetable oil.
  2. To make the sauce In a saucepan, add oil and sauté onions and garlic for 5 minutes. Add the beef, basil, bay leaf and salt and pepper and sauté just until beef is cooked, breaking up with the back of a wooden spoon. Add the tomato sauce, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Set aside.
  3. To make the cheese mixture Combine the ricotta, mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses, egg, milk and salt and pepper in a bowl.
  4. To assemble the lasagnas Place two wonton sheets into the bottom of each muffin cup, overlapping to cover the entire surface. Add half the cheese mixture overtop of the wontons. Then add half the sauce.
  5. Place the last 12 wonton sheets overtop, pressing down gently. Add the remaining cheese mixture and sauce and sprinkle with the mozzarella cheese.
  6. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until wontons are crisp. Let cool for 10 minutes, then remove carefully with a knife. Garnish with basil.

Source: The Best of Rose Reisman (Whitecap Books), Rose Reismanwww.rosereisman.com


Click to buy on Amazon.ca.

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Potato and chickpea roti

BT Toronto | posted Thursday, Jan 9th, 2014

Potato and chickpea roti

Makes 5–6 rotis

Time: about 30 minutes


  • 2 medium-size potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 white onion, sliced
  • 1 can (19 oz/540 mL) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup (250 mL) mango or apple juice
  • 3–4 Tbsp (45–60 mL) garlic chili hot sauce
  • 3–4 tsp (15–20 mL) curry powder
  • 1 cup (250 mL) chopped greens
  • whole-wheat tortillas (for use brown-rice tortillas)


  1. In a pot, place the potatoes and onion and just enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and cover.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for about 15 minutes.
  3. Reduce the heat further to low and add the chickpeas, juice, garlic chili hot sauce and curry powder and cook for about 10 minutes, partially covered, stirring now and then.
  4. Add the greens and cook, stirring now and then, for another 5 minutes.
  5. Place some of this mixture in a tortilla and roll it up. Serve hot or cold.

Courtesy Linda Woolven, author, The All New Vegetarian Passport


Click to buy on Amazon.ca.

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Indian spice-roasted chicken with pan gravy and basmati rice

BT Toronto | posted Monday, Dec 2nd, 2013

Indian spice-roasted chicken with pan gravy

Serves 4, generously


  • 1 3-4 lb Chicken, whole
  • ½ Lemon
  • ½ Onion
  • 1 tsp Canola oil
  • ½ tsp cracked Black Peppercorns
  • ½ tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/3 Cup Unsalted Butter, room temperature
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced (a microplane or garlic press makes light work of this)
  • ½ tsp Ginger root, minced
  • ½ tsp Chili powder
  • ½ tsp ground Turmeric
  • ½ tsp ground Coriander
  • ½ tsp ground Cumin
  • ½ tsp Garam Masala
  • ¼ tsp Cinnamon
  • ½ Lemon, zested (use a microplane or fine grater)
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1 tsp Brown Sugar
  • 1 Onion, cut into 6 wedges
  • 2 Carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 stalks Celery, cut into 2-inch pieces


  1. Preheat oven to 475°F.  Remove and discard the giblets and excess fat from the chicken cavity.  Sprinkle the cavity with a good pinch of both salt and pepper.  Place the lemon and onion halves inside the chicken cavity.  Tuck the wingtips under the body and tie the end joints of the legs together with kitchen twine (unless your chicken pre-tied).
  2. In a small bowl, use a spoon to combine the softened butter with the flavouring ingredients from the minced garlic through to the brown sugar.  Set aside.
  3. Now for the fun part: it’s time to get to know your chicken a little better… With gloved or ungloved hands (gloves are ideal if you have longer fingernails), wiggle your fingers under the skin covering the breast and leg meat to loosen.  Be careful not to tear the skin.  Use a small teaspoon to spread the flavoured butter mixture under the skin and spread it all over the breast and leg meat.
  4. In the center of a heavy-duty roasting pan, place onion wedges, carrot and celery pieces in a tight cluster.  You are keeping them close together to create a rack for the chicken to roast upon.  Place the chicken on top of the vegetable “rack” for roasting.
  5. Roast the chicken for 20 minutes at 475°F.  Lower the temperature to 350°F and bake for another hour to 1 hour 15 minutes.  The chicken is considered fully cooked when an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thigh reads 185°F.
  6. Transfer the cooked chicken to a cutting board and allow it to rest 10-15 minutes before carving.  Meanwhile, it’s time to make the pan gravy.

Pan gravy


  • 2 Tbsp All-purpose Flour
  • 2 Cups low sodium Chicken Stock
  • Contents of roasting pan
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste


  1. Use a wide spoon to skim and discard the excess fat from the chicken drippings.
  2. Once skimmed, place the entire pan (including roasted vegetables) onto the stove covering two burners.  Depending on your stove, one burner may be slightly exposed; ensure that it is the burner furthest away from you.
  3. Over medium-high heat add the flour to the pan and use a whisk to incorporate into the oil.  Continue stirring with whisk for 2 minutes before adding the chicken stock.  Simmer until the pan gravy thickens to the desired consistency.  Strain through a fine mesh sieve, season and enjoy with the roasted chicken.

Note:  This is a basic pan sauce technique that can be applied to many types of proteins.  Keep it in your repertoire!

Basmati rice with carrots and raisins 


  • 2 Cups Basmati rice, rinsed well
  • 2 Tbsp Canola Oil
  • 2 Shallots, chopped
  • 1 Cinnamon stick
  • 1 Star Anise, whole
  • ½ tsp ground Cumin
  • 2 pods Green Cardamom, whole
  • 1 ½ tsp Sea Salt
  • 2 Carrots coarsely grated, approximately 2 cups
  • 1 Cup Golden Raisins
  • 4 ½ Cups Water (be mindful that slightly more/less water may be required)


  1. In a fine mesh sieve rinse rice under cold water until the water runs clear.  Soak rice in a bowl filled with cold water for at least 15 minutes, up to one hour.  Drain.
  2. In a skillet, heat the canola oil over medium heat.  Add the shallots, cinnamon, star anise, cumin, cardamom and salt; sauté 2 minutes until fragrant.  Add rice and sauté for an additional two minutes to toast the rice.
  3. Add the water and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to low and cover the pan with a lid, adjusting the heat so that the liquid is gently bubbling while covered.  After 10 minutes, stir in the carrots and raisins with a fork.  Cover and cook for another 10 minutes.
  4. Fluff the rice with a fork and taste for doneness.  Adjust seasoning according to your taste.  Remove the cinnamon stick, star anise and cardamom pods before plating for service.  The cinnamon stick and star anise may be used to garnish the rice. Enjoy!

Courtesy Camille Moore, @CAMI_cooks

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