Host Your Own Oktoberfest

 

The past couple of weeks may have been pretty busy for many of us; Thanksgiving was last weekend, the Run or Walk to Cure Cancer just concluded, and there are a number of food celebrations to keep us occupied this harvest season. And of course, Halloween is right around the corner. So if you happened to miss out on the Oktoberfest celebrations this year, fret not; why not host your own Oktoberfest party, or Oktoberfest themed supper?

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Oktoberfest in Munich is one of the largest fairs in the world, a sixteen-day festival that started in October of 1810 to celebrate the impending nuptuals of Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildeburghehausen. Since that time the celebrations have grown to include horse races (later dropped), agricultural exhibitions, amusement park rides, feasting and dancing and of course the drinking of vast quantities of Oktoberfest beer.

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Holding your own mini Oktoberfest can be a simple affair; all you really need is some great music, some good German beer and some traditional fare, like maybe a beer and potato Soup,  maybe some beer bratwurst and auerkraut , Weiner Schnitzel and apple strudel for dessert. And a rowdy group of friends ready to celebrate.

No matter what you cook up, don’t forget the potato salad. Potato salad is a must for an Oktoberfest celebration, and this recipe for German potato salad is a great way to get things rockin’!

If you find yourself in Prince Edward County next Sunday, drop by the Drake Devonshire Inn in Wellington for sausages, sauerkraut & Muskoka beer – all complimentary – as the Drake celebrates its very own Octoberfest.

Prost!

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German Potato Salad

For the dressing

  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. grainy mustard
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1-1/2 tsp. caraway seeds, lightly toasted and ground
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the salad

  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • Kosher salt
  • 3-1/2 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 3/4 lb. bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 1 cup onion, small dice
  • 3/4 cup dill pickles, small dice
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley

Make the dressing

Whisk the vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the oil until combined. Whisk in the caraway seeds.

Make the salad

Combine the vinegar and 2 tsp. salt in a large bowl and set aside. Boil the potatoes whole, you’ll skin and cut them once they’re cooked.

Drain the potatoes and set aside until cool enough to handle. Peel the potatoes by scraping off the skin with a paring knife. Cut the potatoes into 3/4-inch chunks. Add the potatoes to the bowl with the vinegar and stir to coat.

Add the bacon, onions, pickles and parsley into the potatoes. Whisk the vinaigrette and dress the salad, enough to coat, you won’t need all of the dressing). Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve while still slightly warm, or at room temperature.



Squash Is Amazing

Our Bacon-Wrapped Butternut Squash Stuffed with Kale & Blue Cheese on Canada AM

Our Bacon-Wrapped Butternut Squash Stuffed with Kale & Blue Cheese on Canada AM

 

Did you know what a powerhouse of nutrition your everyday average squash, pumpkin or zucchini is? In my new book, The Everyday Squash Cook, we delve deep into the world of squash and turn up some surprising information about this humble fall fruit. It is the most versatile and affordable superfood, it is also the most effortless to turn into something delicious. Continue »



Let’s Go To The Rodeo

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One of our favourite places in Toronto is the Evergreen Brickworks, it is a beautiful spot year round with lovely gardens in the summer and an ice skating rink in the summer. There’s a year round farmer’s market and always fun and creative food programming for kids – cooking classes and gardening lessons help educate our city’s youngsters so they’ll grow up knowing where there food comes from and how to cook it up for themselves. We are big supporters of any programming that teaches kids about food and that’s why we’re excited about an event they have planned for later this month. Continue »



The Pickle Championships Are Back

 

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Should you want more pickles in your life this fall, be sure to come out to the Drake Hotel on September 22nd for the 6th Annual Pickle Championships. You can come as a guest and just enjoy tasting all the pickles or you can enter your own pickles in either the professional or amateur category. Any kind of pickle is eligible, in the past there have been pickled eggs, pickled tongue, pickled eggplant, many types of kimchi, even pickled walnuts. If it can be pickled, it can be entered. Here’s a little re-cap of last year’s event.

Now to share with you two of our favourite, somewhat unusual, but distinctly gorgeous pickle recipes. Continue »



Vegetarian Festival

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“Mouth-watering burgers. Thick and juicy hot dogs. Fluffy cupcakes smothered in frosting. All meat and dairy free. Veg Food Fest is not your average vegetarian food festival – it’s the biggest one in North America….”

The opening few lines found on the home page of this year’s Vegetarian Food Fest pretty much sum it up. Not only is it the largest Vegetarian Food Festival in North America, it’s one of the oldest and largest in the world. Running this weekend at the Harbourfront Centre today until Sunday Sept 7th, this year marks the 30th anniversary of this eagerly anticipated event, with organizers expecting upwards of forty thousand vegetarians, vegans, and veg-friendly omnivores to attend. Continue »