New Foods & Drinks Made in 2022
Unlike my reading goals and my other goals, I actually knocked this one out of the park! My goal was to make 22 new foods and drinks goal.
I started off the year slow – didn’t make a new food or drink until March! I was at my mom’s and decided to make some Montreal-style bagels (1). I’d made New Yor- style bagels in 2021, but hadn’t tried my hand at Montreal-style1, and since that’s my mom’s preferred style of bagel (what with being from Montreal and all), I decided to give it a go.
The second thing I made was also in March: this lovely beet salad (2), recipe from the Ottolenghi Simple cookbook.
Next I made some braised beans (3) for a friend of mine who had a newborn and then her partner got COVID, so he had to isolate away from them and she was all by herself trying to take care of the newborn so I dropped off some healthy, comfort food. I got the recipe from my sister; she made it for us when we were at my mom’s.
The next thing I made was some dulce de leche (4), which is actually really easy because you just need to boil a can of sweetened condensed milk2. And then I used the ducle de leche to make churro cookies (5), which I brought over to my friends’ Linda & Casey’s place when they had us over for dinner, to go with the delicious tacos that they made.
The churro cookies didn’t turn out as pretty as I would have liked, but they tasted great!
The next thing I made was chicken and chickpea tagine with dates and harissa sauce (6). It was supposed to be with apricots, but I didn’t have any, so I used dates instead.
To go with that I made some bannock (7), which I made from a mix that Scott had received in a gift basket from work.
I made some picked red onions (8) ,which I learned how to make from Linda when I was at her place having tacos. Super easy to make, and they really up your taco game! Not sure why I didn’t take a photo of these – they look so nice!
For my friend Craig’s Pride brunch, I made some lemon poppyseed muffins (9).
For my tenth new item of the year, I made these delicious cheesy potatoes (10). You slice the potatoes really thin, cover the layers with cheese, and bake them in a muffin tin, so you get loves of crispy cheese. So basically heaven.
I saw that after a few years hiatus, New West Pride was brining back its Pie for Pride pie contest, and I decided I wanted to enter that. I’ve never been much of a pie person, due to finding pastry to be highly overrated. But I figured it would be a good challenge and it raises money for a good cause. I’d also been wanting to try making sourdough crust, as I’m always looking for creative new uses for my sourdough starter. Knowing that I don’t have a lot of experience with making pastry, and not having tried making sourdough crust ever, I decided I need to do a test batch. So sourdough crust (11) became the 11th new food I made this year, and then I used it to make a butternut squash, leek, and goat cheese galette (12) which was fantastic, if I do say so myself!
Next I made this lovely carrot salad (13), recipe from the Ottolenghi Simple cookbook.
I made a skillet blueberry slump (14), which I appear not to have taken a photo of, and homemade magic shell (15) (the chocolate sauce that you pour on ice cream and then it solidifies really quickly). The recipe for magic shell is just chocolate and coconut oil and I was hoping the chocolate flavour would overpower the coconut oil flavour, but it did not.
My sixteenth item of the year was the pie I baked for the pie contest: Wild Blackberry Pie with Sourdough Crust (16). I picked the blackberries myself, as the pie contest is in August and that’s wild blackberry season. There are tonnes of wild blackberries around that free for the picking3.
I didn’t win the contest, but I was proud of how this pie turned out. And all the pie that wasn’t eaten by judges got sold to raise money for New West Pride, so that’s a win in my opinion.
Chicken piccata (17) is another recipe idea I got from my sister while we were at my mom’s. She made it for us then, and then I finally got around to making it myself in August, with a side dish of green beans almondine (18).
I made some crispy chickpeas (19) for a tasty, healthy snack, which I appear to have forgotten to take a photo of. But I did take a photo of the carrot and chickpea patties with harissa yogurt (20) that I made!
And here are some Korean style pork chops (21)
My friend Kim introduced me to an Instagram account called Stealth Health Life, where the guy who runs the account makes recipes that don’t look like they would be healthy, but they are. I tried a few of his recipes, including spicy peanut sauce noodles (22), which were tasty but which I thought could be improved by adding some vegetables next time. And which I appear not to have taken a photo of. I also made his Cheesy Beef & Cheese Burritos (23), which I did add some veggies, as well as beans, to (and I also did a mix of beef and pork). These freeze really well, so I made a pile of them and froze them, and then on days when I didn’t have leftovers to take to work for lunch, I took a frozen burrito! Just the other day I made the chicken version so that I’ll have a bunch of frozen burritos ready for lunches in the new year, but I’m not counting it as a “new” food since it’s basically the same thing as the beef one.
Found this cheddar pork chops with Brussels sprouts (23) recipe one day when we had some Brussel sprouts and I was looking for inspiration of what to do with them.
I made this leg of lamb, on which I used a Maritime Donair spice mix that my sister gave me (24)
My friend Alicia and I took a cheesemaking class for her birthday and learned that it is shockingly easy to make cheese. I thought it would be super complicated, but I was mistaken! We didn’t get to make any cheese in the class – it was watching the instructor make cheese (which we then got to try) and we got some cheesemaking supplies to take home. In the class we learned how to make mozzarella, boconcini, and burrata which, spoiler alert, are all just variations of the same kind of cheese, but I haven’t gotten around to making those yet myself. I also bought a couple of other kits to make some other types of cheese and I made on eof them – fromage blanc (25) – to take to my friend Pat’s birthday party4. Anyway, here’s a photo of my fromage blanc, and I expect on next year’s list of new foods there will be more cheese!
Bran apple flaxseed muffins (26). The recipe was originally just for bran muffins, but I added the apples and flaxseed to make them even more healthy. Have some of these puppies in the freezer for when I need a quick, healthy breakfast meal.
I went to New Orleans in November and I learned that pralines are not, as I had believe, a nut. They ar e candy made from sugar and nuts (often pecans, but sometimes other nuts), and sometimes cream. So when it came some to do some Christmas baking, I decided to make some pecan pralines (27). They were freaking delicious, if I do say some myself.
And it’s a good thing that they were delicious because the other thing that I made for Christmas baking, egg nog cookies (28), were very meh.
For Christmas dinner with made a leg of lamb, stuffing, Harvard beets, and Caesar salad – all things I’ve made before, but I also made one new things: Hasselback potatoes (29). I saw this recipe in the food & drink magazine that you get for free from the liquor store and they looked pretty fancy, so it thought I’d give them a try. You basically just slice almost all the way through the potato in thin slices, then brush with olive oil, butter, salt, and pepper, and then cook them. Near the end of the cooking, you sprinkle some parmesan on them. They are kind of like a sideways potatoes au gratin.
I needed Lebanese 7 Spice (30) for a recipe for beef kafta (31) and I didn’t have any, so I made some. I know it’s just mixing together 7 spices, but I had to grind the pepper and grate the nutmeg by hand and I made a little jarful to add to my spice rack, so I’m totally counting it.
The penultimate new food that I made this year was two days ago when my friend Linda came over for lunch. We made tandoori chickpea wraps with kale slaw (32) and they were delish!
And the final new food that I made this year I made last night: savoury baklava (33). The recipe came from the food and drink magazine that you get for free at the liquor store. It’s got layers of phyllo, butternut squash/onions/leeks, breadcrumbs/chicken stock/onions/leeks, and feta. Topped with sesame seeds, honey, and chili flakes. It took me forever to make – I cut my thumb terribly with the veggie peeler while I was peeling the butternut squash and, ironically, watching a video about how to properly use my new Japanese knife set that we got for Christmas. Leave it to get a new super sharp set of knives and then injury myself with a vegetable peeler. So after band-aiding up my injured thumb, I was severely slowed down without by not being able to use my thumb properly, then by having to replace the band-aids ‘cuz they got wet and stopped sticking and without the pressure of the band-aid, my thumb wouldn’t stop bleeding.5 I did not, however, bleed on the food! Then when I got to the assembly stage, the phyllo sheets kept sticking to each other and ripping, which I’ve never had happen with phyllo before. In the end I gave up worrying about not having tidy phyllo sheets and just arranged the ripped up pieces of phyllo instead. Phyllo is very forgiving that way. Anyway, it was pretty delicious, though not something I’m likely to make very often given how time consuming it was.
So there you have it – 33 new foods that I made in 2022. 33/22 is a pretty good score!
- In case you are wondering, Montreal-style bagels are sweeter, denser, and smaller than New York-style bagels. Montreal-style bagels are also made in a wood-fired oven, which I didn’t have access to, so had to make due with a regular oven. [↩]
- You just have to make sure you let it cool down completely before you open it, or it will explode all over you, scalding you to death. You’ve been warned. [↩]
- I know that blackberries are an invasive species and that it would be better if they weren’t here so that the plants that are indigenous to this region could flourish. But they are really tasty! [↩]
- And my cheese was so delicious that I made a new friend at the party, who I chatted extensively with about cheesemaking. [↩]
- Also, to top things off, I cut the index finger on my other hand while cleaning the knife I used to cut the vegetables for the salad. Not while using the knife – I was practicing all the proper, safe techniques that I learned in the video I was watching when I cut my hand with the vegetable peeler to do my cutting, but my hand slipped when I was washing the knife and I cut my finger real good. At that point, I gave up on cooking for the day and told Scott he had to make the fish that we were having to go with this. [↩]