Wednesday, August 21, 2013

This is a story "aboot" a Canadian "teahoose".

You know how everything tastes better after a good, long hike?  With Lake Louise behind us, my husband and I continued our chilly trek in the Canadian Rockies.  After 5 miles and a 1,204 foot elevation gain, our faces were numb with cold and our bodies felt weak with hunger.  At that perfect moment, we caught the first sign of our saving grace - the smell of baking bread wafting out of a picturesque log cabin.  It was magical.

The "teahoose", as the Canadians say, was built in 1927 by two Swiss guides as a resting place for climbers.  To them, I am forever indebted.  It was here that I had one of the most satisfying and delicious meals of my life - steaming hot biscuits with creamy butter, sweet honey, and a cup of Banff "Ice Wine" hot tea.  Simple, humble, comforting. 

Imagine looking in awe at the Rocky Mountains surrounding you, a cup of hot tea in one hand and a rustic biscuit in the other.  Warm honey and butter runs down your chin with every hungry bite.  Words truly cannot express this experience!

With no electricity, everything is made with care daily on wood stoves.  The staff hikes in to live at the cabin on a weekly rotation.  This is how fresh ingredients and provisions are brought to the teahouse as well.  The result of this process is a camaraderie among hikers, bakers, and servers alike.  You all worked hard to get up to that gorgeous spot on the mountain.  So, you sit back together to enjoy the spectacular views...and to savor one more comforting biscuit.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

is where the heart is.

That is what I have always heard.

is also where you EAT!

I am taking a break from the documentation of international food and the pretty-as-a-picture plating that I have enjoyed at some incredible restaurants.  Tonight, the images might not be picture perfect, but these are some of the meals that I cook in my own home.  Meals that are as comforting and satisfying as my cozy Montana home and the company of my favorite dinner companion.  (Jordan, you know who you are!)  

Some of these meals evoke memories of my Thai mother cooking up something garlicky in the kitchen...some are experiments that became favorites...some are recipes shared by dear friends...and others are just attempts to make a basic dinner with whatever is in the cupboard.  No matter how short on time we are, there is always a way to have the result be a good, HOME-COOKED meal.

Eggs & Tomato - A staple Chinese dish
Garlic Broccoli
(Thank you, Mamma Sumalee!)

Gouda Cheese & Dark Beer Fondue
Apples, Pears, Baguette, Broccoli to dip

Turkey, Pine nut, & Raisin Meatballs
Cous cous
Fresh peppers

Fettuccine with Tomato basil sauce
Grilled Eggplant 

Grilled Steelhead (from Idaho)
Grilled Broccoli

Grilled Asparagus Sandwiches with Boursin Cheese on Raisin Walnut Bread
(My rendition of a sandwich I had at Paula Deen's restaurant in Savannah, Georgia)

Garlic Rainbow Chard with Garbanzo Beans
Cous Cous
Local Cheeses 

Char grilled Montana Beef Burger stuffed with Havarti Cheese

Butternut Squash Ravioli with Fried Scallions and Walnuts
(Indebted to Kyla for this one)

Gorgonzola & Honey Baguettes
(Thank you, Jen!!)

Spring Mix Salad with Pistachios and Shaved Bittersweet Chocolate

From my dinner table to yours...
Home SWEET Home!