Saturday, June 10, 2006

Summer's a Breeze with Marinades

Summer’s here (although it’s windy and you need a jacket today) and nothing makes life easier than having a BBQ grill and lots of different marinades to make things exciting without too much thought or work. These veal chops were marinated in the ginger marinade and I served them with broccoli sauteed with shallots and garlic and added some crushed chili peppers and lemon juice based on a recipe from the The Sonoma Diet book.

I love taking the subway here in Toronto. For one thing, I don’t have to worry about driving in downtown traffic or trying to find parking for less than a million dollars. But even better is that it’s a great place to people watch. We’re the most multicultural city in North America and add to that – downtown is a tourist Mecca. Every culture is represented – so many languages at one time, so many ethnic outfits in gorgeous colors and patterns, funky hip youth adorned in tattoos and body piercings and interesting hairdos – a wonder for your eyes and ears.

And often someone has left a copy of Metro – the free daily newspaper. Which brings me to the heart of this post – Yesterday I found a trilogy of delicious sounding marinades to try and I thought I’d share them here. Why? Well, there is nothing better than marinating to make the ordinary, extraordinary. How many ways can you do chicken or fish before your loved ones give you the “not this again” look? Oh – and it qualifies for Weekend Herb Blogging too, which is being hosted this week by Cate at Sweetnicks! So without further ado….

Honey Marinade
Makes 1 cup/250 ml/ (enough for 4 portions of anything)

¼ cup/50 ml ketchup
¼ cup/50 ml honey
3 tbsp chipotle chili in adobo sauce
1 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tsp salt

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl, mix well and pour over ribs, chicken, beef or grilling vegetables.

Fennel Marinade
Makes 1 ¼ cup/300 ml

¼ cup/50 ml extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp fresh orange juice
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp grated zest of orange
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp hot pepper sauce
¼ cup/50 ml fresh parsley or cilantro, chopped

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl, mix well and pour over fish, chicken or vegetables.

Ginger Marinade
Makes 1 ¼ cup/300 ml

½ cup/125 ml soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup/50 ml sliced scallions/green onions
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp pear nectar (apricot or peach would be great too)
1 tbsp hot pepper sauce I used Asian garlic chili sauce instead
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp fresh ginger, finely grated
Honey to taste.

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl, mix well and pour over beef, pork, veal, chicken or vegetables.

I like to marinate things overnight, but a couple of hours on the counter does great too. Just remember, that rule applies to meat (veal, lamb, beef, pork. Etc.) and chicken. It’s important to remember that fish and seafood, like scallops, shrimp, squid, etc get very rubbery after 30 minutes, so don’t overdo the marinating or you won’t enjoy your meal.

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J said...

hi ruth, what wonderful ideas to add fresh vibrant flavours to a meal! thanks for the inspiration...

Drive By Fruiting said...

Your blog rocks!

mae said...

3 marinades... sounds perfect for bbq indeed!

Thanks for sharing them Ruth.

Ruth said...

Thanks, guys I'm glad you dropped by.

I have lots of mustards in my fridge and often I just close my eyes, grab one and then add something like ginger marmelade or apple jelly and slather my chops or chicken before grilling. But sometimes it's nice to do something different and that's when I love my marinades.

Sara said...

the honey one sounds terrific. if it ever stops raining here, maybe i can try that one on the bbq.

jenjen said...

Those marinades are making my mouth water, just thinking of them being slathered over a juicy piece of meat... YUM!

spots said...

thanks for the marinade recipes, ruth! your honey marinade sounds like something very local to where i live, which my friend described to me once i'll have to try it! by the way, my name is ruth too!!