Saturday, 2 July 2011


I absolutely love watching fireworks, especially when they are put on by a big city with an equally big budget.

I love not knowing what type of firework to expect next. I love seeing all the colours, shapes, and sizes. I love the great big finishes. And I love seeing other people's faces of awe when they are enjoying the fireworks too.

Last night, as I watched the great display Victoria put on with my finger quickly clicking away to get a few shots of the show, I got to thinking about food.

Do I ever stop? No, and I don't want to. :)

You might not instantly think that cooking for a dinner party is very similar to fireworks, but I think that in many ways it is.

First, when you sit down to a meal to share with friends, none of them know what to expect. They may know how many courses are coming or what the name of a dish is, but they won't know exactly how it tastes, what it's going to look like, or how it will be served.

Second, when I cook, I love to make the colours on my plates jump and arrange things as pretty as I can. I want everyone to think wow as they see the meal, even before they taste a single bite.

Third, when I have a dinner party, I always try to finish the meal with a big bang. I want my friends to be excited about the dessert and to have a taste explosion when the first bite hits their tongues. I want them all to remember the meal and leave full and happy.

Finally, fourth, I love watching my friends faces as they eat my food. Their smiles and complimentary words make all the work worth it.

So here's my last Canada Day themed recipe. I served a potato salad, but it wasn't like an ordinary potato salad. The flavours of it surprised even me!

Canada Day Potato Salad

8 medium red skinned potatoes
1 medium red onion, peeled, cut in half, and sliced into thin half rings
1/2 cup vinegar
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon sugar
4 medium stalks of celery, washed and sliced into small pieces
1 teaspoon salt and pepper
1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
1 tablespoon mustard
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon sugar

1. Wash and dice your potatoes, leave the skin on for the red colour. Then boil them until cooked through. Place on a cookie sheet and let cool in your fridge for a few hours.

2. Combine vinegar, water, and 1 tablespoon sugar in a small pot at high heat. Bring to a boil and then pour over slices of red onion in a medium bowl. Let the mixture cool and pickle for a few hours.

And don't worry. I hate raw onion with a passion. The sharpness of the onion disappears in the pickling process so all you have left is a nice flavour on a crunchy piece of onion.

3. Remove onions from the vinegar mixture and put them in a large bowl with the celery and potatoes. Don't discard the vinegar mixture though, save the it for the dressing.

4. Combine 1/4 cup of the vinegar mixture, mayonnaise, olive oil, sugar, mustard, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and dill and pour over the potatoes, celery, and onions.

5. Toss lightly and enjoy.

I served my potato salad with a spicy BBQ so I wanted my salad to be on a slightly sweeter side, but if you don't you may want to omit the sugar in the dressing.

And maybe it's a bit on the pink side of red, but don't I get points for not just adding in red pepper?

P.S. For a little extra Canada Day fun, try to find me in the picture below. I was one of about 3000 people in Victoria's human flag this year.

If you need a hint, I'm in a white shirt and near one of the pointy tips of the red maple leaf.

Also, my head is small so you might need to look for my dark haired and tanned boyfriend to spot me.

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