Month: June 2010

Oils for all occasions

June 28, 2010 2 Comments

Using only one type of oil is like eating only one type of fruit! Each kind of oil has its own flavour, nutritional qualities and uses.

Tarragon, the unknown ‘Queen of Herbs’

June 26, 2010 No Comments

The medicinal properties of tarragon have been widely appreciated for a very long time: The Greeks and Romans used it to treat toothaches and snake bites. From the Middle Ages onwards, European monks cultivated it, among other things as a cure for hiccups. These days, it is still found in herbalists’ shops and an essential […]


Quebec’s national dish

June 24, 2010 1 Comment

There exist many different explanations for the origin of Quebec’s national dish, the “China Pie” (the equivalent of “Shepherd’s Pie”). According to some people, it originated in the city named China in Maine, from where some Québécois workers imported it between 1850-1900.

Peppermint and spearmint

June 19, 2010 1 Comment

It’s hard to pinpoint the exact number of species that belong to the ‘Mentha’ genus because they cross breed so easily, giving rise to many natural hybrids. Mint grows so effortlessly in all the moderate climates around the world that, in several places, it is regarded as weeds.

Open Sesame!

June 18, 2010 No Comments

Sesame is most probably the first ever plant from which edible oil was extracted. One thing is for sure, its seeds have been used for over 7,000 years, as proven by archaeological remains found in India and in China.

Chicken Under a Brick

June 16, 2010 1 Comment

“Pollo al Mattone” (i.e. under-the-brick) is a traditional Italian cooking method in which bricks weigh down a butterflied chicken, thereby ensuring even and quick cooking, which yields a crispy skin and succulent meat.

Local strawberries have finally arrived

June 13, 2010 No Comments

Each year, we wait impatiently for them, and now, here they are again, at last! Since they are only picked once fully ripened, and the journey between the field and our plates is quite short, the taste and nutritional value of locally grown strawberries are beyond compare.

Once upon a thyme

June 12, 2010 No Comments

Thyme is native to the Mediterranean region and Asia Minor. Although more than a hundred different types of this herb have been identified, the two most popular varieties of common thyme are French thyme (or summer thyme) and English thyme (or winter thyme). While the former is more flavourful, it is the latter that is […]

Audio: Listen to this week’s specials

June 10, 2010 5 Comments

You can hear Cinzia on radio every week, as she chats with host Kim Fraser and shares the week’s best grocery specials with menu ideas.

clafoutis aux cerises Clafouti

Cherry Clafouti

June 8, 2010 No Comments

To make the most of freshly arrived cherries in the market, I’d like to share a very different dessert with you this week, known as “clafouti”. Native to the Limousin region in France, clafouti gets its unusual name from “clafi”, a dialect word that means “filled” (with cherries).

Rosemary, a fragrance from Provence

June 5, 2010 4 Comments

Rosemary, like all other aromatic herbs, is primarily recognized for its medicinal properties that have been revealed over the centuries. While Egyptians placed sprigs of rosemary in their pharaoh’s tombs to fortify their souls, Greeks used it to improve their memory and to stimulate their intellect. In this day and age, rosemary is used in […]

Happy Italian Republic Day

June 2, 2010 No Comments

Originally published in the Journal de Montréal on June 2, 2007. You’d imagine that the Italian national holiday would be celebrated when our soccer team wins the World Cup… but no! It’s today that we are commemorating the 64th anniversary of our republic, which was declared on June 2, 1946.

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