Real Life, Real Food Recipes

If normal life is not like the one in the movies, then everyday food is definitely not like… Foodgawker.   At least not my life!   Ever wonder why food sites have so many baking submissions?  Because you can spend hours pimping out your cake for pictures, that’s why. Can’t say that about food straight off the frying pan, unless you don’t intend to eat it (and I don’t think that’s a right thing to do).

I figured it’d be fun to do a glimpse of the kitchen when the camera is stashed away – here’s what didn’t make it to the blog, but makes up the bulk of what we eat on a regular basis.

Canuck Cuisine Blog First of all, we’ve been eating more fresh seafood than ever since Save-On-Foods opened here in south Calgary.  No more rotting fish from the big nasty supermarket down the hill (and if you live near Shawnessy, you know the one I mean! – it is a friggin health hazard) What a concept! Thank you, Save-On, for bringing an affordable, high quality fish market to the city.  I really mean it, it changed the way we eat.

I like to write about whole grain salads, but what I serve along side them doesn’t often make it to the blog.   Here’s some pan-fried sockeye salmon that I sprinkled with palm sugar.  I could eat like this every day:

Pan-fried sockeye salmon | canuckcuisine.comYou can probably guess by now that my favorite dish this spring has been the humble pan-fried fish.  You heat up a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, and a tablespoon of butter, throw in a bunch of chopped parsley (that’s right, right in the oil), set the fish fillets on top, then grind some sea salt on them.  Thin fillets like red snapper only need a minute, or so, per side.  You spoon the leftover sauce over the fish on the plate.  So good.

Pan-fried red snapper with butter and parsley sauce| canuckcuisine.comYou can pan-fry sole the same way, but watch it even closer so it doesn’t overcook.  Less than one minute per side.  It’s best to flip the fillets with a rubber spatula – they’re so delicate.  I made these last night and set them on top of mashed potatoes.  The fish was so soft, it was falling apart and melding with the potatoes, it was like eating a yummy fish pie.

Pan-fried sole in butter and parsley sauce | canuckcuisine.comHere’s my team at work.  Whenever I make something, Greg asks me if he needs to sprinkle while I take pictures. We still really suck at coordinating the whole thing, but it’s really funny to do it, and the pictures turn out sometimes. Those fritters were gone as soon as I put away the camera.

IMG_20140426_152557My dog is on a raw food diet, which I make for her from scratch.  My mom said something funny when I mentioned it the other day – “in Poland, dogs were fed table scraps and lived to be 18, or got run over by a car.  Here, dogs are sick and always at the vet’s.”  And it’s the same with people.  Eat processed crap, expect to get sick… Preparing your own nutritious food is the key to stay healthy.

Speaking of weiner dogs…I absolutely adore these oven mitts… Seen at the Bay.

IMG_20140426_152514Some baking: Marcella Hazan’s apple cake I made this month.  I’m always very closely observed.

Marcella Hazan's apple cake | canuckcuisine.comGreen Puy Lentils – OMG .   These are not your ordinary lentils.  I read David Lebovitz  refer to them as “caviar you can get for $3.”  (When David Lebovitz tells you something is good, you listen.) My favorite way of eating puy lentils is to cook, drain them, and add a bit of salt and butter.  That simple – and absolutely divine.  I’m buying bags and bags of them next time I’m in France:

Organic Puy Lentils | canuckcuisine.comRandom quinoa salad.  Saute chopped onion and zucchini until soft and toss through with cooked quinoa.  Add a bit of curry powder, chickpeas, and dried currants. done.

Quinoa Salad | canuckcuisine.comServed with grilled chicken:

Quinoa salad with grilled chicken | canuckcuisine.comMy fridge…  I subscribe to the idea of buying less more often, so it’s never full of stuff.   I’d never be able to find things that way, and probably waste a ton of food.  I threw out so many condiments since I started eating a cleaner, unprocessed diet.

IMG_20140410_133039I’m friends with kale now, and the Lacinato kale is the only one I buy.  I’m not a fan of the curly kale at all – it’s so much drier and more bitter.  For smoothies, I roughly chop the entire leaf, but if I’m cooking with it I’ll cut out the tough stem.  I foresee that I’ll be making better smoothies in the future, because something very special is coming in the mail (hint hint)…

Lacinato Tuscan Kale | canuckcuisine.comWhen I’m not cooking fish, I like to grill Greek-style lamb.  I always use the same marinade, and it goes: olive oil, minced garlic, fresh rosemary, salt and pepper.  Cover and refrigerate the lamb for at least 1 hour (overnight is best).  Serve with a tsatziki salad and homemade naan bread to make a nice dinner.

Greek Style Grilled Lamb | canuckcuisine.comDeli salads are the organic market 🙂 And I will learn to how make them ALL at home.  <evil laugh!!>

IMG_7413For now, I reverse engineered the mango, and quinoa ones – only that mine are 10x better.

IMG_7430Until next time.


  1. I really enjoyed this post and have too many things I could say about it really, so I’ll stick to just a couple (phew, she says!) Most of all, I’m really impressed with your ‘daily routine’ type food. Despite having a food blog, I still struggle sometimes to come up with easy and healthy meal ideas on those nights when you’re tired and just want some good food. There are some great ideas here, so thanks! 🙂
    P.S. Don’t you just love David Liebovitz? I just ‘rediscovered’ him a few weeks ago and can’t stop reading! His post on the release of his book was amazing.

    • I so agree, Helen! I struggle with easy and healthy dinners sometimes too. My motto lately is keep it simple! No chihuami or chirimuchi sauce over braised chicken tacos here. Screw that. Who has time for that?! Magazines?!

    • Thanks 😛 I got inspired to write this post after ‘rediscovering’ Dinner, A Love Story. And no way I’m wasting a nice fish to take FG pictures.
      David Lebovitz is one of my fav. blogs. He’s a great and inspiring writer.
      Rachel Eats is another one I love.

  2. I loved this post! The funniest thing is that you live where I used to live LOL. I clearly remember going down that hill to get food LOL. I completely forgot how hard it is to get fresh and organic food in Calgary. It still amazes me. With such a close location to BC and so much money in the city…
    Believe it or not, I never ever bought fish at Save On. Alex does fishing every Fall. I feel your pain and so happy for you!
    i love your backsplash!!! And thanks for being real! The amount of sugar, butter and flour on FG always sends me in shock. Do those bloggers eat or cook real food at all?! Who can eat all of those cakes? Like seriously, let’s be real!
    Your fridge definitely looks amazing and a fridge of no kids in the house LOL. I’m ready to declare a state of emergency when my fridge looks like yours with 3 men in the house. And me with my Insanity workouts.

    • Shawnessy? No way! 🙂 That’s too funny… Greg is in Coquitlam this week for a work course and is sending me all these pictures of flowers. Vancouver might be a realistic move for us in the future… the timing needs to be right.
      Save On is great… fresh seafood that doesn’t smell like I left it in the car for 3 days, OMG. I’m jealous you can go salmon fishing 😛
      Backsplash is from Hope Depot, and we installed it ourselves! I can’t believe it looks half ok, because we have two left hands when it comes to that stuff.
      I have to check out that Insanity thing you keep writing about, it sounds like I’d probably die if I tried it!!! cya

      • Yes, Vancouver is in a full spring bloom and this week we are hitting high 20s. I love it here and you will too, I’m sure!!!
        Insanity…only if you are not a beginner fitness enthusiast. I just don’t want you to die. I would recommend T25 first or Turbofire, if you never really worked out. Insanity is crazy!!! Trust me.

Leave a Reply