The Plunge

by Renee Lavallee in ,

No better way to ring in the New Year and clear out the cobwebs than by taking a plunge into the ice cold waters of Lake Banook just down the hill from my house. This is the first of many new 'plunges' that I will be taking this year. I will keep you all posted.

Happy New Year!

Market Round-Up - Special Italian Edition

by Renee Lavallee in

This is a very special Feisty Chef market round-up. This edition featured my haul from the city market during my recent visit in Turin, Italy. I managed to visit this world-class market a couple of times. It was exploding with incredible local and seasonal products from Piedmont. I will follow-up in the next few days with a video recipe inspired by this market round-up. Please stay tuned. 

Lamb Tagine - Toddler Approved.

by Renee Lavallee in ,

I have a number of favorite dishes on rotation in my house. Lamb tagine is definitely one of them! How good is this dish you ask? Well, my two year old boy, Phil - who happens to be the pickiest eater on the planet, gives it two big thumbs up. 

Aside from being toddler approved, this dish is very easy and quite healthy. I usually serve it over brown rice or couscous. 

I recently made this dish at the Select Nova Scotia "Meet Your Farmer" event in Dartmouth. I was fortunate enough to show people how to make this recipe while standing alongside my favourite lamb farmer in the province, Bill Wood of Wood 'n Hart Farm. During this event I received tons of requests to re-post the recipe. I also had some folks ask me if I could put together a video recipe as well. So folks, here it is, lamb tagine...the video.

If you're looking for the full recipe, I actually wrote about this dish in a post from March of 2010. This post can be found here:

Lamb Tagine - complete Recipe and photos

Renee & Zoe's Strawberry Ice Cream

by Renee Lavallee in , ,

As I had promised in my blog post last week and as per the video, here is my recipe for Strawberry Ice Cream.

Strawberry Ice Cream

Makes Approximately 2L

  • 2C of strawberries; hulled and washed
  • 1C sugar
  • 2C whole milk
  • 2C 35% cream
  • 1 vanilla bean; scraped (optional)
  • 6 egg yolks

In a pot, add the strawberries and about 1 tbsp of the sugar. Bring to a boil and turn off.

In another pot, add the milk, 1/2C of the sugar and the vanilla bean. Bring to a simmer but not a boil. While this is happening, separate your eggs and whisk yolks with the sugar. Once the milk and cream has come to s simmer, slowly add a ladleful at a time to the egg mixture; constantly whisking so that they eggs do not cook. Add a few more until the egg mixture is tempered then pour back into the pot with the remaining milk and cream.

Slowly cook over medium heat until the mixture thickens and can coat the back of a spoon. Pour through a sieve to remove vanilla beans and any solid and mix with the cooked strawberry mixture.

Cool completely, preferably overnight in the fridge. To make the ice cream the next day, follow the manufacturers instructions on your ice cream machine.

Big Thanks to All.

by Renee Lavallee in

Change is in the air this spring. As some of you may know, my column will no longer appear in the Chronicle Herald on Tuesday mornings. As a result, I plan on breathing some much needed new life into I am very excited about this. Please stay tuned.

I was very touched today by all the support. I am more motivated than ever to share my passion for good food and cooking. As I have not had the pleasure of meeting many of you, I thought it was appropriate to share a few of my thoughts on this quick video.

I encourage you sign up for my mailing list to find out about future updates, including the eventual relaunch of Thanks again!