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Happy-Gourmand

No joking around with April Fool’s Day food

Fun foolish fare

I hope everyone is happily ensconced somewhere with loved ones this long weekend, celebrating spring in whatever fashion suits you.

I will be with my grandkids for the long weekend, probably grateful I’ve been working out consistently, as I’ll likely be spending most of my time on the floor.

This week, I thought I’d offer you some spring recipes that are fun and festive, but easy to prepare. I don’t know about you, but I like to continue the good vibe at the table throughout spring with colourful and flavourful meals. We need to be practical with busy schedules however, and indulging doesn’t always have to mean eating rich foods that tip the bathroom scale.

My first treat for you is one of my favourites from my time in France years ago, and it’s especially well-suited for April Fool’s Day. In France, the best-known prank is what is known as an “April Fool’s fish”. You’ve been pranked when someone manages to stick a paper fish on your back without you noticing.

My French friends taught me how to make a deceptively good fish dinner and we called it April Fool’s Fish. If you’d like the recipe and the history behind the connection of fish to this silly day, click here.

Another inspiration that came from my recipe research while in France was for two recipes that became a combo – the second one was born out of leftovers from the first one.

I came up with Tart n’ Tangy Salmon as an appetizer for dinner at a weekend getaway. Because I had leftover ingredients and everyone was still around the next morning, I came up with Wake Up Salad. Maybe not necessity, but a desire not to be wasteful was the mother of invention that weekend.

I’ll post the last recipe right here, as it’s a simple one. This is a recipe I adapted while working on food trucks, feeding the cast and crew of a TV show called “Outer Limits.” I had a huge case of bananas that were getting very ripe, so I made Chocolate Banana Cake and served it with fudge sauce and vanilla ice cream.

I made a batch that was for 150 people, but the recipe I share here is just for one bundt cake. It freezes well and makes a nice treat at coffee time or in school lunches.

I hope you surround yourself with the good vibes from good company and good food, whatever inspires you in the kitchen and at your table, this spring.

CHOCOLATE BANANA CAKE

½ cup butter (or coconut oil if you prefer)

¾ cup brown sugar

2 large eggs

2 large/ 3 small ripe bananas, mashed

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour ( you can sub in ¾ cup whole wheat flour if you wish)

1-1/2 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp cocoa

½ tsp baking soda

¾ cup sour cream or Greek yogurt

1 tsp vanilla extract, and/or ½ tsp cinnamon add an extra layer of flavour

Preheat your oven to 350F. Grease a bundt pan and set aside.

Cream butter and sugar till fluffy. Add in bananas and blend, then add eggs one at a time and mix well after each. Add vanilla if using.

Sift flour, cocoa, baking powder and baking soda together (cinnamon too, if using). Add alternatively with the sour cream to the egg mixture.

Spread into the greased pan and bake for 45 minutes, or until knife inserted in centre comes out clean (internal temp. 195F).

Let stand on a wire rack to cool. Dust with icing sugar if desired, or serve with fudge or caramel sauce and/or vanilla ice cream if you want to splurge.

This article is written by or on behalf of an outsourced columnist and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.



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About the Author

Kristin Peturson-Laprise is a customer experience specialist by trade, which means she is someone passionate about people having a good time. 

Her company, Wow Service Mentor, helps businesses enhance their customer experience through hands-on training, service programs, and special event coordination.

Kristin enjoys her own experiences too, and that is what she writes about in this column. She and her husband Martin Laprise (also known as Chef Martin, of The Chef Instead) love to share their passion for food and entertaining.  

Kristin says:

"Wikipedia lists a gourmand as a person who takes great pleasure in food. I have taken the concept of gourmandise, or enjoying something to the fullest, in all parts of my life. I love to grow and cook food, and I loved wine enough to become a Sommelier. I call a meal a success when I can convey that 'sense of place' from where the food has come . . . the French call that terroir, but I just call it the full experience. It might mean tasting the flavours of my own garden, or transporting everyone at the table to a faraway place, reminiscent of travels or dreams we have had."

 

E-mail Kristin at:  [email protected]

Check out her website here:  www.wowservicementor.com

 



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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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