Mother’s Day is a treat. Even if you are not a mother, it’s wonderful to have an excuse for a celebration. A special occasion means food and at this time of year, a springtime menu is perfect. I hope that these suggestions from Foodland Ontario will entice you into the kitchen and inspire your festivities.
Maple Glazed Trout with wilted Cucumber Salad
Serve this fresh rainbow trout on a bed of the spicy-sweet cucumbers accompanied by hot crusty rolls for lunch, or for a more substantial meal, add basmati rice.
2 cups (500 mL) thinly sliced unpeeled Greenhouse cucumbers (about 1/2 cucumber)
1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
1 small shallot, finely diced
2 tbsp (25 mL) finely diced red pepper
2 tbsp (45 ml) rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp (25 mL) liquid honey or maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp (7 mL) sesame oil
1/4 tsp (1 mL) sriracha chili sauce or hot sauce
2 tbsp (25 mL) fresh chopped mint
1 tbsp (15 mL) toasted sesame seeds or toasted flaked almonds
2 trout (about 12 oz/ 350 g) each
2 tbsp (25 mL) maple syrup (preferably dark)
1 tbsp (15 mL) Dijon mustard
Drizzle of olive oil
Place cucumber slices in colander; sprinkle with salt and let stand 30 -60 minutes. Drain and pat dry with paper towel. Meanwhile, in medium bowl, combine shallot, red pepper, vinegar, honey, sesame oil and sriracha. Add dried cucumber slices, mint and sesame seeds. Toss. Cover and refrigerate.
Fish: Preheat oven to 425 F (220 C). Arrange trout fillets on a parchment lined baking sheet making sure you have enough parchment paper to enclose fillets. In small bowl, whisk together maple syrup and mustard. Brush fillets with this mixture. Drizzle oil over fillets and fold paper over fillets to enclose, tucking ends of paper under fish. Bake in oven 10 – 12 minutes or until trout flakes easily when tested with a fork. Serve 1/2 fillet per person, hot or at room temperature accompanied by a spoonful of the cucumber salad and basmati rice if desired. Serves 4.
Baked Rhubarb Apple Pancake
Serve this fruity pancake warm or at room temperature with maple syrup as part of a brunch or dessert. For a more intense maple flavour choose dark rather than light maple syrup and remember to refrigerate the syrup after opening.
2 tbsp (25 mL) butter
1 apple cored and thickly sliced
2 cups (500 mL) rhubarb cut into 1 inch (2.5 cm slices) or substitute sliced fresh strawberries
3 tbsp (45 mL) granulated sugar
1/2 cup (125 mL) milk
1/4 cup (50 mL) maple syrup
1/2 cup (125 mL) whole wheat or all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp (1 mL) ground nutmeg
3 tbsp (45 mL) sliced almonds
Sifted icing sugar
Maple syrup and whipped cream (if desired)
Preheat oven to 400 F( 200 C). Spray 10 inch (25 cm) baking dish with baking spray, melt butter over medium heat swirling to coat bottom of pan. In medium bowl, toss apple and rhubarb with sugar. Add to baking dish and toss with butter, spread evenly. Bake for about 10 minutes or until apple slices are just tender. Remove from oven; set aside.
Meanwhile, in blender, combine eggs, milk, maple syrup, flour, vanilla, nutmeg and salt. Blend until smooth, scraping down sides of container as needed.
Pour batter over fruit in skillet. Sprinkle evenly with almonds. Bake for 15- 20 minutes or until puffed and golden. Cool on rack for 5 minutes. With spatula, loosen edges of pancake; cut into 4 – 6 wedges. Serve each wedge on a plate; sift over icing sugar and drizzle each serving with additional maple syrup and a dollop of whipped cream. Serves 4 – 6.