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Grilled Bison Steaks, New Potatoes, Beet & Goat Cheese Salad and Blueberry Galette


Yesterday was Food Day, and the world’s longest barbecue. I caught wind of it last week – too late to really organize anything – I pondered calling a few neighbours over for an impromptu dinner when it occurred to me that cooking a nice meal on the grill for the three of us is just as legit as pulling together a block party. So I thawed a couple of beautiful bison T-bone steaks from a friend’s brother’s farm, cooked up some tiny new potatoes (which were then drizzled with cold-pressed canola oil from Highwood Crossing – Canada’s EVOO), sauteed some chard, and tossed a salad of lettuce leaves plucked from the pots on my back porch (YES! I DIDN”T KILL THEM THIS YEAR!), roasted beets (from another friend’s brother’s farm) and crumbled Fairwinds Farm goat cheese, drizzled with honey-balsamic vinaigrette. The bison steaks were unbelievable – so worth a try – but remember that they are leaner than beef (although these came across not one bit as such – so tender and juicy) so they need less time on the grill. These got 3 minutes per side and then a rest in a foil tent on the counter while I made the salad and finished the chard, and were a perfect medium-rare.

(I should mention breakfast, too: my sister and her kids – plus one friend – came for waffles – this recipe, made with a shake of ground flax and drizzle of flax oil, which they did not notice at all, and in fact the kids declared them the best waffles ever – topped with grilled peaches, blueberries, raspberries from the kids’ backyard, Nanking cherry jelly, Rogers’ Golden Syrup and maple whipped cream. Maple whipped cream is just cream whipped with a drizzle of maple syrup instead of sugar.)

After dinner the plan was to head next door for some sangria and mojitos – a good excuse to bake a blueberry galette. BC blueberries are cheap right now, and when I was shuffling around my freezer for room to fit more in, out fell a roll of puff pastry. I kept it out, and it made a perfect galette with under 5 minutes of actual work. That’s my kind of fast food.

It had just come out of the oven when the windstorm hit. You may have heard of it – and if you’re in Calgary, most likely experienced it. For us it was a little unexpected drama between dinner and dessert; gale-force winds trashing the back yard and forcing us all to rush in for cover. It took the power out for a couple hours, which only meant we’d have to wait for our whipped cream, and W couldn’t watch The Incredibles. We heard sirens in the distance – not uncommon during a storm – and only learned later of the horrific accident downtown, and the stage collapse at Big Valley Jamboree. How do you endure it? I just can’t imagine.

So we ate our pie late, back outside, when the power came back on and we could whip the cream with some maple syrup. When I cut into it the juices ran out (I served it on a cheese board that was $6 at Winners) but not in an uncontrollable way – this is my fear, with berry pies, since that one I made as a kid that wallowed in a half inch of soup. This was runny in a way that kept it from being stodgy – although it was a bit of a trick to catch all the drips, I wouldn’t change a thing. The puff pastry wasn’t too puff, and was lovely pastry. (It was one of two rolled-up logs you get in a package of President’s Choice puff pastry from Superstore – easy because you don’t have to roll it out – and even though it was square, it still worked just fine. In fact, the points made it look even more cool and rustic.)


Blueberry Galette

Recipe link

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August 2, 2009

inspired by this one.

  • Makes: Serves 6.


1 pkg. puff pastry, thawed, or pastry for a single-crust pie

1/2 cup sugar

2 Tbsp. cornstarch

3 cups fresh blueberries

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. salt

1 Tbsp. butter, cut into bits

1 egg, lightly beaten

coarse sugar, for sprinkling (optional)


1Put oven rack in the middle position and preheat to 425°F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with foil, parchment or a silpat mat.

2In a small bowl, stir together the sugar and cornstarch to get rid of any lumps. In a large bowl, toss the berries, sugar-cornstarch mixture, lemon juice, cinnamon and salt.

3Unwrap the puff pastry onto the sheet, or roll regular pastry into a 10" (ish) circle. Mound the blueberries into the middle of the dough, leaving an inch or two around the edge. Fold the edges over the filling, just enough to keep the berries from sliding out. It can overlap and look rustic, there is no need for neatness.

4Brush the pastry with egg and sprinkle with sugar. Bake until golden, 25-30 minutes. If it's browning too quickly, cover loosely with some foil. Cool for a few minutes before sliding out onto a cutting board to cut and serve. Serve warm, with whipped cream sweetened with maple syrup or vanilla ice cream.

Makes: Serves 6.

Tonight’s dinner can be summed up in four words: SHAKEN’BAKE – DRUMSTICKS – AT – SHIRLEY’S.

One Year Ago:


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23 comments on “Grilled Bison Steaks, New Potatoes, Beet & Goat Cheese Salad and Blueberry Galette

  1. Dana McCauley
    August 3, 2009 at 8:21 am

    You are rocking the pies these days!

    I had beets yesterday at my mom’s house and (as you can see on my blog today) I made them last week at home with a yogurt and nigella seed garnish. Aren’t beets fantastic this time of year?


  2. Heather
    August 3, 2009 at 8:57 am

    The windstorm hit Edmonton too.

  3. Cheryl
    August 3, 2009 at 11:25 am

    Doesn’t Shake’n’Bake qualify as two words? You are so, so lucky sometimes.

    Seems we missed the Saturday storm, but last night’s was a doozy.

  4. June
    August 3, 2009 at 11:35 am

    The girls look so proud of their waffle decorations -how sweet & what a good Auntie you are. Dinner looked awesome & as for the galette, don’t you just love them? They really make the fruit shine through, though I’m with you on having made a few “swimmingly” wonderful berry pies in my time.

  5. thepinkpeppercorn
    August 3, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    Yum, yum, and more yum! Those waffles are over the top – and you are so sneaky!!!!

  6. Christina
    August 3, 2009 at 1:54 pm

    I have to admit, I LOVE to entertain and cook for people but there is something really awesome about cooking a beautiful, delicious meal for my family or even just for my husband and I.
    I’ve got a disk of pie dough in the fridge along with a ton of blueberries that will be perfect for the Galette!! Looking forward to it!

  7. Erica B.
    August 3, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    Saturday’s storm missed the house but we were in Red Deer when it hit there. Winds were so fierce we took the party and the contents of the deck indoors. The drive home was an adventure too. Last nights storm was right on top of us; at one point the house shook – we were sure at least one of the kids would wake up and all three slept through the whole thing.

    We had bison and baby roasted potatoes this weekend too although not in the same meal :)

  8. Margaret
    August 3, 2009 at 6:55 pm

    A staple in my freezer is the package of puff pastry. Mostly I use it for spinach quiche and fold over the points like you do. I will certainly be making your blueberry colette.

    I am surprised you had to wait for the power to come back on to whip the cream. I have an old rotary egg beater that my mom gave me years ago, and it’s always been a reliable backup tool for me, especially when the power goes out. (If you don’t have one, you can find lots of really good ones in the in thrift shops.) I bet W would love to help in your kitchen with that tool!

  9. JulieVR
    August 3, 2009 at 7:01 pm

    It was more want than wait. I’m not a fan of beating cream by hand! I’m kind of lazy that way.

  10. Grace
    August 3, 2009 at 11:37 pm

    Julie, have I got *just* the toy for you …


    (yeah, I know, it’s really long) … in any event, no electricity required … simply pour the whipping cream plus whatever flavouring you want to use into the container, pop the lid on, pop in the CO2 cartridge, give it a bit of a shake, then push the lever and voila!! Whipped cream to your heart’s content!! You can store it as such, using it when you need it, and not have to worry about the whipped cream going all weepy on you. I love mine … :)

  11. Kate
    August 4, 2009 at 4:02 am

    What fun you have with food! The posts from the 28th of July through this one really are fantastic! Thanks for all the great recipes, great links and great adventures. Do you realize how many of us vicariously live through you? 😉

  12. Tiffany
    August 4, 2009 at 11:10 am

    Lovely pie. I came over from reading UTHC and enjoy your site. Blueberry pie is by far my favorite.

  13. Amy Green - Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free
    August 4, 2009 at 6:44 pm

    The galette looks great. Did you have any trouble with the blueberries juicing all over when you cooked it? It doesn’t look like you did. I bet the cornstarch took care of that. I saw that it ran a little when you cut it but, hey, it’s a blueberry pie. It’s supposed to.

    I wouldn’t have whipped the cream by hand either. I spend a lot of time in the kitchen and am all about short cuts.

  14. Christina
    August 4, 2009 at 7:40 pm

    Just had to let you know that I made the blueberry Galette tonight and it was so delicious!! I used the 2nd disc of pie crust that I had in the fridge from when I made Cheryl’s hand pie’s on the Barbecue (also a winner). Both my husband and I preferred tonight’s Galette to a pie. The bottom did get soggy at all which we both loved. This will be made again and again! I just picked up a big bag of cherries that will be my next Galette. Another winner! Thanks Julie!!

  15. Lynn
    August 4, 2009 at 7:56 pm

    All so beautiful! I love making galette, everyone is always blown away by them and they are simplicity itself. A peach galette may be making an appearance soon on my table! The beets look wonderful. Every year I get a craving for beets.

  16. Janice
    August 5, 2009 at 2:43 am

    What is the name of the bison farm where you get your steaks? I am looking to stock my freezer with some bison!

  17. margo
    August 5, 2009 at 7:56 am

    I believe my prayers were answered Saturday night! (As the week went on and the forecast turned to 31 and thunderstorms, I started praying!!) Our son got married (Ponoka, north of Red Deer) and my daughter who was the flower girl and Over-the-Moon with excitement, is also over-the-top terrified of intense weather, especially wind. With all the destructive storms and even death from them, it seems we were hit the mildest. Trees were stripped and it was a nasty storm here for awhile, but nothing like even in Lacombe, 15 minutes away. Both of my husband’s brothers and their families were spending the weekend at Big Valley Jamboree, and left to come to Ponoka for the wedding. We are so thankful, yet so sad for the losses of some.

  18. JulieVR
    August 5, 2009 at 8:24 am

    Janice – these came from a friend whose brother raises bison but doesn’t sell them… I’d try Valta Bison (www.valtabison.com), Buffalo Horn Ranch (www.buffalohornranch.ca) or Carmen Creek (www.carmencreek.com).

  19. JulieVR
    August 5, 2009 at 8:24 am

    Grace – your link didn’t work!

  20. Charmian Christie
    August 5, 2009 at 9:14 am

    It all looks so gorgeous!

    I’m glad you joined the World’s Longest Barbecue. We had friends over for it and love the annual event. No block party, just getting people eating more local food, one meal at a time.

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