HEAVENLY TWO-MINUTE CHOCOLATE SAUCE

There are few times in life when an investment of two minutes produces a truly heavenly result. (Don’t go there, we weren’t talking about that.) This is one of those rare moments when mere minutes result in a mind-blowingly delicious experience. Whether you’re a dark chocolate devotee or a silky milky maven, you’ll want to add this romantic recipe to your repertoire.

Ingredients

  • Cocoa
  • Icing sugar
  • Water or whole milk
  • Sea salt (pinch)

Directions

  1. Determine what type of chocolate sauce do you prefer. Is it a thick, dark chocolate or a sweet and silky milk?
  2. If you prefer dark, use about 2/3 cocoa and 1/3 icing sugar in your mix. If you prefer milk, use about 1/3 cocoa and 2/3 icing sugar. If you like it down the middle, go half and half. Add a pinch of sea salt.
  3. Add small amounts of water or whole milk and mix (start with about 2 tbsp of wet per 1 cup of dry). Add more liquid, until you reach the desired level of drizzle- or dip-ability.

Pair this heavenly chocolate sauce with fresh strawberries, bananas or pears.

Parsley-Mint Chimichurri

Spoon this delectable chimichurri on Butternut Squash Steaks to take them to never-before-reached heights.  

Vegan Parsley-Mint Chimichurri

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (25 g) loosely packed flat leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup (6 g) loosely packed mint leaves
  • 1 small clove garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp chopped jalapeño
  • 1/2 lemon – juiced
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/8 tsp hickory liquid smoke
  • 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup (59 ml) olive oil

Directions:

  1. Place the parsley, mint, garlic and jalapeño in your high-speed blender and pulse the mixture a few times to roughly chop the herbs. Add the lemon juice, salt, liquid smoke and pepper and pulse a couple more times to combine.
  2. With the motor running on low speed, slowly stream in the olive oil. Continue to process, scraping down the sides a couple of times along the way, until the chimichurri is smooth.

Butternut Squash Steak

If you follow a plant-based diet you’ve probably seen, but have never used Montreal Steak Spice. Well that ends today! Couple these gorgeously grilled beauties with Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Shiitake Miso Gravy for a “steak” dinner perfect for you and your plant-based partner.

Butternut Squash Steak

Ingredients

  • 2-3 butternut squash “necks”
  • Olive oil
  • Montreal Steak Spice

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (177 °C).
  2. Preheat your grill pan or counter top griller.
  3. Cut the necks of the butternut squash from the bulbs and trim off the stem ends. Peel the butternut squash and, very carefully, with a very sharp knife, slice the necks into 1/2” (1.3 cm) thick planks. You want to count two steaks per person thus the number of squash you will need will depend on how many half inch steaks you can get from the squash. What I’m trying to say is…look for squash with big necks! Save the off cuts (and the bulbs) for soup or a Butternut Squash Hummus.
  4. When your grill pan is hot, brush both sides of the squash planks with the olive oil. Grill the squash steaks until they are nicely grill marked on both sides. Turn the steaks 45° to form an eye-catching diamond pattern with your grill marks. Place the grilled steaks on your cutting board. Brush them once again with the olive oil and generously coat both sides with the Montreal Steak Spice. Place them on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for approximately 20 minutes or until they are easily pierced with a skewer.

For a tasty twist, serve them topped with a tablespoon of Parsley-Mint Chimichurri.

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes and  Shiitake-Miso Gravy are our definition of “power couple”. Delicious and dynamic as separate dinner elements, but truly dazzling in a duet of flavours and textures.  

Image by flickr user Stacy Spensely

Ingredients

  • 6 medium Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 1½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 5 cloves roasted garlic
  • 4 Tbsp vegan butter
  • ¼ cup chives – for topping

Directions

  1. Cut potatoes in quarters. Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a light boil over medium-high heat, add 1 tsp of sea salt, cover & cook for 25-30 minutes or until potatoes are very tender. They should effortlessly slide off a knife when pierced with a knife.
  2. Wrap unpeeled garlic cloves in tinfoil and roast in 375° oven while potatoes cook.
  3. Once cooked, drain potatoes and place them back in the hot pot off the heat for 1 minute to evaporate any additional water. Remove peel and transfer potatoes to a large mixing bowl. Mash until fluffy, being careful not to overmash. Don’t be shy about using a ricer for this task, if you have one.
  4. Unwrap the roasted garlic cloves and squeeze the garlic from its skin. Mash roasted garlic cloves with a fork. Add in vegan butter, mashed roasted garlic, salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Top with a generous sprinkle of chives and serve with warm Shiitake-Miso Gravy.

Shiitake-Miso Gravy

We love, love, love this plant-based gravy over mashed potatoes. Try it with our Fluffiest Ever Mashed Potatoes or our Vegan Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes.

Ingredients

Roux:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp all purpose flour (or all purpose gluten free flour)

Gravy:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup (50 g) chopped shallots
  • 1 cup (80 g) chopped fresh shiitake mushrooms – stems removed
  • 1½ (355 ml) cups vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp mushroom soy sauce
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1 tbsp white miso

Directions

    1. First, prepare the roux by heating the olive oil in a small pot over medium heat. Sprinkle the flour over the olive oil and, whisking constantly, cook for 4-5 minutes until the mixture is golden in color and smells a bit “nutty”. Remove the pot from the heat and set the roux aside until needed.
    2. Chop the shallots and mushrooms. Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Add the shallots and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue to sauté, stirring regularly, for an additional 3 minutes.
    3. Raise the heat to high and add the stock, mushroom soy sauce and white pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil and immediately turn the heat down to low. Add the roux that you prepared earlier and whisk it in completely. You don’t want any “roux lumps”.
    4. Simmer the gravy, whisking regularly, for approximately 7-10 minutes or until it has thickened slightly. Remove the pot from the heat and whisk in the miso until it has completely dissolved.
    5. Remove the pot from the heat and carefully puree the gravy in batches in your blender until it is smooth. Transfer the gravy to a clean pot and keep warm over very low heat until you’re ready to serve.

Fluffiest Ever Mashed Potatoes

So here it is. In honour of Valentine’s Day, we are bringing out our best moves. By far the smoothest, silkiest and (dare we say) sexiest is this fluffy, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth mash.

Fluffiest Ever Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs potatoes (we prefer Yukons, but Russets or Reds also work fine)
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup cream
  • salt (to taste)
  • chives (optional)
  • pepper (optional)
  • additional pat of butter (optional)

Directions

  1. Peel the potatoes and cut them into ½” chunks. Place them in a large pot and add cold water to an inch above the potatoes. Cover and bring to a gentle boil. Test for doneness at 20 minutes. A fork should easily go through the potato.
  2. Drain and let sit for 3-5 mins until a bit of steam evaporates.
  3. THE SECRET STEP: Do not mash these mashed potatoes! Pass the potatoes through a wire mesh strainer, using a wooden spoon to push them through. The result will be fluffier by far than anything you have ever experienced. OK, not fluffier than kittens, but you get our drift.
  4. Heat the butter and cream over gentle heat and add, gently stirring with a wooden spoon or spatula to incorporate. Taste, then add salt and pepper (and if you like, a sprinkle of chives) to taste. DO NOT overmix or your silky potatoes will go starchy.

Try these perfect potatoes with our Shiitake Miso Gravy.

Red Wine Reduction with Mushrooms

This simple red wine reduction is exquisite with red meat or other strong flavoured dishes.  James, our butcher and one of our in-house chefxperts (that’s an expert chef, naturally) notes: “If you’re making the reduction to go on a nice steak, because the beef is so rich and flavourful you don’t want to mask it. If you want a peppery flavours use a shiraz; if you want a lighter wine but still want rich flavour you can select a Rioja wine. I would recommend avoiding pinot noir and merlot.”

Red Wine Reduction with Mushrooms

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp vegetable oil
  • 8 oz mushrooms (we used brown cremini)
  • 1 small shallot
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1/2 cup broth (we used chicken)
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp fresh minced thyme
  • salt & pepper

Directions

  1. Start by prepping your ingredients: trim and thinly slice the mushrooms, mince the shallot, and separate the butter into four pieces.
  2. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
  3. When the oil just starts smoking, add the sliced mushrooms and cook them for about 5m, stirring them occasionally, until they’ve browned and the liquid has evaporated.
  4. Add the shallot, and cook for about 1m, until it begins to soften.
  5. Increase the heat to high and add the red wine and broth. Bring the mixture to a rapid simmer and cook until it is reduced to about 1 cup of liquid (about 5 minutes, for us).
  6. Add the vinegar and mustard and cook for about one minute, until the whole mixture is thickened.
  7. Remove from the heat, and whisk in the butter and thyme. Add salt and pepper, spoon over steaks (or whatever else) and serve immediately.