Provence’s Second French Cooking Made Easy Kit Features Lois Lake Steelhead

Do you crave going to Provence Marinaside in Yaletown but are self-isolating.  How about trying Provence’s latest French Cooking Made Easy Kit?  The press release is below.  Bon appetit.

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(Vancouver, BC) – The public have spoken. In a social media poll conducted this past week, the public voted 65 percent that Provence Marinaside’s next French Cooking Made Easy Kit should feature Lois Lake Steelhead. Runner up was Provençal Roasted Half Chicken. Both are signature dishes of the restaurant.
 
Priced at $40, Provence’s French Cooking Made Easy Kits consist of the recipe for the selected dish plus enough ingredients to make two servings.  The Fennel-crusted Lois Lake Steelhead kit will be available for take-out from the restaurant starting Monday, April 6. This kit includes:
  • 2 filets Lois Lake Steelhead
  • Fennel seeds
  • Oil for cooking
  • Virgin sauce ingredients (tomatoes, garlic, lemon, basil, olive oil)
  • Saffron potatoes
  • Snap peas

demo video featuring Chef Alessandra Quaglia in her Vancouver home kitchen shows you how easy it is to make this dish using the kit.
 
With each new kit, Wine Director Joshua Carlson suggests a featured BC wine pairing to complement the dish and this can also be ordered for an additional fee. “We believe in supporting our local wine producers to help them and help the BC economy,” says Carlson.  This week’s wine pairing is Laughing Stock Pinot Gris for an additional $25.
 
French Cooking Made Easy Kits were first introduced by Provence on March 26 as a way of helping people cook at home during social isolation. The first kit, Prawns Provençal, has proved so popular that it will remain available on an ongoing basis.
 
These kits are being offered in addition to Provence’s special Take-out Menu of prepared dishes.
 
Kit orders must be placed at least two hours prior to pick up by calling the restaurant at 604-681-4144. As with Take-out Menu items; French Cooking Made Easy Kits will be available for takeout only between 11:30 a.m. and 8 p.m. 
 
 Bon Appetit!
 

Cooking with Pulo Cuisines Coconut Adobo Sauce

Pulo Philippine Cuisine logoI’m sure if I asked, you would probably be able to tell me about your favourite Indian or Thai curry, Chinese noodles, or Vietnamese grilled meat dish. But if I asked you for your favourite Philippine dish, I’d get a blank stare.  The Philippines is one of of South East Asian neighbours, and probably the third largest immigrant population in Vancouver, but you may not know.  Their cuisine takes bits and pieces from Malay cuisine, China, and Spain, and combines it with their fresh seafood and love of grilling, and vinegar-based sauces to give you a completely different Asian flavour.  Instead of big spicey flavours, you get more vinegar and garlic, sweet bbq, and mild coconut milk flavours.  A cuisine that I think you should try, just for the fusion from all these different countries. Pulo by the way is the Filipino word for “island”, and there are more than 7000 islands that comprise the Philippines.

One way you can try Filipino cuisine, other than hunting around for the Filipino restaurants in East Vancouver or Richmond, can be by trying the new Pulo Philippine Cuisine sauces that are made and marketed right here in Vancouver.  They have 5 different sauces for you to try:

  • Guimaras Island Mango Chili Marinade
  • Samal Island Pineapple Tamarind Marinade
  • Cebu Island Lemongrass Atsuete Marinade
  • Tinaga Island Coconut Adobo Cooking Sauce
  • Luzon Island Kare Kare Toasted Peanut Cooking Sauce

All these sauces are vegan friendly.  I recently received all but the Kare Kare Toasted Peanut Cooking Sauce to try.  This article is about my experience with the Tinaga Island Cocconut Adobo Cooking Sauce.

Pulo Philippine Cuisine range of sauces

Pulo Philippine Cuisine range of sauces

Cooking Chicken with Tinaga Island Coconut Adobo Cooking Sauce

What is coconut adobo sauce?  Well there are two main components.  One is coconut milk, which adds rich creaminess to this dish.  The other half “adobo” is a traditional Philippine dish that is made by slow cooking meats or vegetables in vinegar, garlic, and black pepper.  This dish combines the two, so is not 100% traditional, but it is very flavourful.  If you like a mild curry, you may want to try this cooking sauce.  It has light pepperiness, garlic, sourness from vinegar, and the creaminess from the coconut milk.

Tinaga Island is part of the Bicol region (Central Philippines), an area renowned for hot chili and coconut milk dishes.  It is one of the few areas that adds chili spice to their food in the Philippines.  Cooking with this sauce was relatively easy.  They recommend cubing 4 chicken breasts (or the equivalent for pork or beef) and chopping 4 cups of vegetables for this dish.  I used chicken drumsticks which I had on hand.  Start off with frying the chicken in oil, add the vegetables, and sauce and them simmer till done.  Serve with rice.  For vegetables I used onions, green beans, green pepper, and carrots.  I would recommend to cube one potato and add it to the mix because I enjoy squishing the potato in the sauce on my plate and getting every last drop of flavour.  I enjoyed the flavours of this dish, and I think that it is worthwhile to try out on your own, with your family and friends.

Coconut adobo chicken simmering

Coconut adobo chicken simmering

 

Wine Pairing and Where to Buy these Sauces?

If you would like to drink some wine with this dish, I would recommend a Chenin Blanc from the Loire Valley in France or from South Africa,  or a dry Riesling from BC, Washington, or Australia.  Both have enough body and acidity to cut through the richness of the coconut milk, and both grapes are known for being very good food pairing wines.

In time I will try out the different dishes and give you an update here on my blog.  I have found these sauces for sale at Choices Market, but you may want to check other grocery stores, in their Asian aisle.

Husband vs Wife a Friendly Chef Throw Down at Provence

Marinaside Patio Seafood Platter

Marinaside Patio Seafood Platter

Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus.  But does this also work for chefs cooking?  Let’s find out with the husband and wife chef couple from Provence Restaurants.  Details from this match up / throw down are below.  

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(Vancouver, BC) — On May 23rd Chefs Alessandra and Jean-Francis Quaglia will celebrate 21 years of marriage. Not only are they a couple, but they are also both chefs and business partners owning Provence Restaurants – Provence Mediterranean Grill in Point Grey,Provence Marinaside in Yaletown and the newest venture TWB – The Wine Bar next door to Provence Marinaside. While Jean-Francis is Executive Chef for all locations, he devotes most of his time to Provence Marinaside (P2) while Alessandra casts a watchful eye over Provence Mediterranean Grill (P1). Over the years a friendly rivalry has blossomed between P1 and P2 – each offering slightly different menus and completely different ambiance.
 
On May 29th, Provence Mediterranean Grill will be the site for Husband vs. Wife – a Chef’s Challenge. Who does the better halibut? Alessandra? Jean-Francis? You be the judge.
 
For this one night only P1 will offer a set three-course set menu for $50 (including tax and gratuity but not beverages). The first course is a choice from the restaurant’s antipasti case and dessert is Cherry Chocolate Clafoutis. It’s the main course where the halibut throw down happens. Two very different versions of halibut will be offered – one by the wife, the other by the husband. Guests won’t know who has created which to keep the competition unbiased. At the end of the evening Provence will tally up which main course sold the most and will announce the winner via social media and in its newsletter.
 
The idea came to Alessandra when the family (they have two sons who have grown up in the restaurants) was on a recent vacation. “We had many nights of cooking with the boys and a little competition developed to see who the best cook was. It was a lot of fun, so we decided to try it at the restaurant.”
 
At the moment, this event is planned as a one-off. However, if there is a lot of demand and the event quickly sells out; they may consider repeating it on May 30th and then doing a different competition at Provence Marinaside next month.
 

Get Your Tickets

When: May 29

Cost: $50 (including tax and gratuity but not beverages) per person

Tickets are available on Eventbrite: or  through Provence’s web sitewww.provencevancouver.com 
 
So join us for some ‘all in the family’ fun at Provence Mediterranean Grill on May 29th and you get to pick the winner. It’ll be a halibut of a good time.

January Vegan Cooking Classes at Wild Rice in New Westminster

Wild Rice logoOK, the holiday season is over and all our binging.  It’s time to treat our bodies better in 2013.  One way is to learn how to make some healthy and delicious vegetarian Chinese dishes at Wild Rice restaurant in New Westminster.  It is easy to get to Wild Rice.  Hop on the Expo line skytrain and jump off at New Westminster station.  Here is the announcement that showed up in my email box.  Enjoy!

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Executive Chef Todd Bright is featuring Vegan Chinese in his cooking classes this month at the New Westminster location. Value priced at only $30, the fee includes the class (both demonstration and hands-on) followed by a four-course dinner. It does not include tax, gratuity or beverages.

Classes start at 6 p.m. every Tuesday this month starting January 8th.  Please contact caroline@wildricebc.ca  or call 778-397-0028 to book your seat.

MENU

Seasonal Spring Rolls
cauliflower puree
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Curried Vegetable Steam Buns
sweet kecap drizzle
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Grilled King Oyster Mushrooms
polenta fries, cashew and caramelized onion ricotta
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Chinese Five-Spice Carrot Cake
ginger icing