06/25/2012 11:56 EDT | Updated 08/25/2012 05:12 EDT

Great ways to cook with season's best produce

Here are three delicious ways to take advantage of the season's best produce:

Omelette With Garlic Scapes

Garlic scapes are the curly green shoots at the top of a garlic plant and are usually available from mid-June to mid-July. They're not as strong as garlic bulbs and are great in pesto or in barbecue marinades. They also work well in an omelette.

5 ml (1 tsp) butter and a drop of olive oil

3 eggs

15 ml (1 tbsp) milk

Salt and pepper, to taste

2 to 3 garlic scapes, chopped

3 slices cheddar cheese (optional)

In a skillet with a rounded bottom and sloping sides, heat half of the butter and saute the garlic scapes until tender.

In a mixing bowl, whip eggs, milk, salt, and pepper using a fork. Mix in garlic scapes.

Without cleaning the skillet, add remaining butter and oil and heat it up, being careful not to burn butter. Pour egg mixture into skillet. Cook over moderately high heat until the bottom is set. Using a heatproof spatula, move cooked mixture to the centre and let uncooked mixture to flow into the bottom of the pan. When cooked, the omelette should be barely brown on the bottom, soft and moist in the centre.

At this point, if desired, you could add a few pieces of thinly sliced cheddar cheese down the centre of the omelette. Using a spatula, fold the omelette in half. To serve 2 people, cut omelette in half. Serve with a tossed salad.

Makes 2 servings.

Note: This is suitable for breakfast, lunch or a light dinner. Amounts are easily multiplied for more servings.

Source: Marina Queirolo, Evergreen Brick Works


Baked Whole-Wheat Samosas

These stuffed vegetarian pastries take advantage of mini new potatoes and onions and are great as appetizers or snacks.


500 ml (2 cups) whole-wheat flour

0.5 ml (1/8 tsp) salt

250 ml (1 cup) plain non-fat yogurt


500 ml (2 cups) mini new potatoes, skin on, cubed

15 ml (1 tbsp) canola oil

250 ml (1 cup) onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

1 cube (2.5 cm/1 inch) ginger root, peeled and grated

5 ml (1 tsp) cumin seed

10 ml (2 tsp) curry powder

1 ml (1/4 tsp) salt

250 ml (1 cup) frozen green peas

Cayenne pepper (optional)

Canola oil, for brushing

Dough: In a bowl, mix flour and salt. Add yogurt and form into a ball. Knead, adding more flour as needed. Wrap tightly and place in the fridge until ready.

Filling: Boil potatoes for 15 minutes or until tender but not mushy. Drain and set aside. In the same pot, heat oil over medium heat; add onion, garlic, ginger, cumin, curry powder and salt. Cook until onion starts to soften. Add peas and cook until heated. Remove from heat and add potatoes. Toss to blend.

Heat oven to 220 C (425 F).

On a floured surface, roll dough into a long rope and divide evenly into 12 pieces. One by one roll each piece into a circle. Place about 30 ml (2 tbsp) of the filling on one-half of each circle, sprinkled with a little cayenne pepper if desired, and fold over dough to form a semi-circle. Dampen inside edge of dough with finger dipped in water and crimp edges with a fork. Brush sparingly with oil.

Place samosas on a greased baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven. Reduce oven temperature to 180 C (350 F). Flip samosas over and bake for an additional 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve with your favourite dipping sauce.

Makes 12 servings

Nutrition information per serving (1 samosa): 142 calories; 5 g protein; 3 g total fat (0 g saturated fat, 0 mg dietary cholesterol); 25 g carbohydrate (4 g dietary fibre); 99 mg sodium; 266 mg potassium.

Source: Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada (


Wild Mushroom Salad With Poached Egg

This salad combines fresh greens, herbs and vegetables in a tasty lunch or brunch dish.

500 g (1 lb) cremini, oyster or shiitake mushrooms (or a combination), sliced

1 large shallot, thinly sliced

10 ml (2 tsp) chopped fresh thyme or oregano (or 4 ml/3/4 tsp dried thyme or oregano)

1.5 l (6 cups) torn escarole, frisée or romaine lettuce

1/2 sweet yellow pepper, chopped

30 ml (2 tbsp) grated Parmesan cheese

50 ml (1/4 cup) balsamic vinaigrette dressing

4 eggs

Spray large non-stick skillet with cooking spray. Heat skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, shallot and fresh or dried herb; cook, stirring frequently, until liquid evaporates and mushrooms are golden, about 10 minutes. Spoon into large bowl; add greens, pepper and cheese.

Drizzle balsamic vinaigrette dressing over escarole mixture and toss well to coat. Divide among four plates.

Fill saucepan with about 7.5 cm (3 in) of water. Heat until water simmers gently. Break cold egg into small dish or saucer. Holding dish just above simmering water, gently slip egg into water. Repeat with remaining eggs. Cook in barely simmering water until white is set and yolk is cooked as desired, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove eggs with slotted spoon. Drain well on paper towel, then place one egg on top of each salad.

Tips: For poached eggs with a compact oval shape, use cold fresh eggs. If desired, 10 ml (2 tsp) vinegar can be added to the poaching water to help the eggs keep a compact shape.

Makes: 4 servings

Nutrition information per serving: 183 calories; 10 g total fat (2.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat); 279 mg sodium; 14 g carbohydrates (3 g dietary fibre); 4 g sugar; 11 g protein.

Source: Egg Farmers of Canada (