Family Day has only been an official holiday in Ontario since 2008. I think it was a great idea to create another holiday that breaks up the winter. I know I am enjoying my Family Day weekend! I took an extra day off in order to make it a 4 day weekend so I could get some serious cooking done and have some down time with my loved ones.
I spent some time yesterday with a good friend of mine having lunch at one of my favourite French bakeries, Bonjour Brioche. It’s an amazing little bakery in Toronto’s Leslieville area that serves breakfast and lunch from Tuesday to Sunday. They specialize in french tarts, baguettes and pastries. At lunchtime they make the most amazing savoury tarts that they serve with salad greens. Every day the chalkboard is filled with delightful offerings that sell out by closing time.
I have added a link to their site in case you are in the area and are looking for lunch. They do not take reservations and you can only pay with cash but it is a fun neighbourhood place.
After lunch we wandered around Leslieville checking out the shops and buying fresh ingredients for the weekend. I finally got a chance to check out Lynn Crawford’s Ruby Eats. She has created a charming gourmet shop that sells her homemade preserves, cookware and the local ingredients that she uses in her restaurant Ruby Watchco. The shop is really lovely and worth a visit.
I started the weekend cooking with an amazing winter salad that has become a mainstay in my home. This salad of spicy, roasted butternut squash is perfect for this time of year but is one that I make all of the time.
Warm Salad of Roasted Butternut Squash, Prosciutto and Pecorino
Makes 4 servings
• 1 butternut squash
• olive oil
• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1 tsp. dried red chilli flakes
• 1 tsp. coriander seeds
• 20 thin slices of prosciutto
• 4 handfuls of spring mix
• 6 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
• 4 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
• 1 small block of Pecorino cheese
Preheat your oven to 375°F.
Carefully cut your butternut squash in half, and remove the seeds.
Remove the two ends and discard them.
Cut each half into quarters and lay in a roasting tray.
Rub with a little olive oil.
In a mortar and pestle pound a teaspoon each of salt, pepper and chili flakes and coriander seeds.
Sprinkle over the squash.
Roast the squash for half an hour or until soft and golden.
Remove from oven and let it cool. Remove skin and cut into 1 inch chunks.
Add a handful of spring mix to each plate. Top with strips of prosciutto rolled up and Butternut squash chunks.
Drizzle with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper to taste.
Use a vegetable peeler to shave the Pecorino and add to salad plates.
Recipe modified from the original published in Jamie’s Kitchen by Jamie Oliver