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Cowboy-style Alberta brunch and berry pies: Happy eatin'

From cowboy-style Alberta brunch to summertime berry pies, these recipes are sure to up your happiness quotient at more than a few August meals.

Our Alberta Brunch is our nod to cowboy culture. Fresh baked Sour Cream Cornbread is topped with warm, cheesy eggs, smoky bacon and green onion.

ALBERTA BRUNCH

3 Tbsp (40 mL) butter

3 Tbsp (40 mL) flour

2 cups (500 mL) milk

2 cups (500 mL) shredded cheddar cheese, divided

1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt

1/4 tsp (1 mL) hot pepper sauce

1/8 tsp (0.5 mL) pepper

1/2 cup (125 mL) mayonnaise

6 hard-cooked eggs, coarsely chopped

Sour Cream Cornbread (recipe follows)

8 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled

1/2 cup (125 mL) sliced green onion

 

Melt butter in a medium saucepan; stir in flour and cook 1 minute. Gradually stir in milk and cook over medium heat until thickened. Stir in 3/4 cup (175 mL) cheese and next 5 ingredients (salt through eggs). Cut warm Sour Cream Cornbread into 9 pieces. Place a piece of cornbread on each plate. Spoon egg mixture over top of each piece. Sprinkle each with remaining cheese, bacon and green onion. Serves 8.

 

Sour Cream Cornbread

2/3 cup (150 mL) cornmeal

2/3 cup (150 mL) flour

1 Tbsp (15 mL) sugar

1 tsp (5 mL) baking powder

1/2 tsp (2 mL) baking soda

1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt

1/4 tsp (1 mL) cayenne pepper

1 egg

2 Tbsp (25 mL) oil

2 Tbsp (25 mL) milk

1 cup (250 mL) sour cream

Combine first 7 ingredients (cornmeal through cayenne pepper). Ingredients may be assembled to this point 24 hours in advance. Whisk together egg and remaining ingredients. Stir egg mixture into dry ingredients just until moistened. Spread batter in a greased 9 inch (23 cm) square pan. Bake at 425ºF (220ºC) for 15 minutes. Serve immediately. This cornbread does not reheat well.

 

Our Basic Berry Pie can be made with any combination of your favourite berries. Our Foolproof Pastry recipe lives up to its name, guaranteeing a flaky pie crust every time. If you have lots of berries, make two pies and try our simple streusel topping instead. Don’t forget the vanilla ice cream.

BASIC BERRY PIE

Pastry for a 9-inch double crust pie

4 - 5 cups berries (blueberries, saskatoons, raspberries, etc.)

3/4 - 1 cup white or brown sugar

3 Tbsp quick-cooking tapioca

1 Tbsp lemon juice

2 tsp grated lemon peel

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1 - 2 Tbsp butter

Sugar

 

Roll out one half of pastry to fit pan. Combine next 6 filling ingredients. Mound filling into pie shell. Dot with butter. Roll out remaining pastry. Drape pastry over filling. Trim pastry; seal and crimp edges. Cut vents in top crust to allow steam to escape. Sprinkle lightly with sugar. Bake at 425°F for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350°F and bake 40 - 45 minutes longer or until filling bubbles and crust is golden.

Cook's Note: A streusel topping may be substituted for the top crust. To make streusel topping, combine 2/3 cup flour, 1/3 cup brown sugar, and 1/4 tsp. cinnamon. Cut in 1/3 cup butter until mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle topping over filling and pat down evenly.

FOOLPROOF PASTRY

3 cups (750 mL) flour

1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt

1 cup (250 mL) shortening, chilled and cubed

6 Tbsp (90 mL) ice water

1 tsp (5 mL) pure white vinegar

1 egg, lightly beaten

Ice water, optional

 

Combine flour and salt in a bowl. Cut in shortening with a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse meal. Whisk together 6 tbsp (90 mL) ice water, vinegar and beaten egg. Gradually add ice water mixture to flour mixture, mixing lightly with a fork just until dough starts to hold together. If dough is too dry, gradually mix in additional ice water, 1 tsp (5 mL) at a time, just until dough comes together. Gather dough into a ball; divide in half. Flatten each half into a disc shape. Wrap each disc with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours before rolling out. Makes 1 double or 2 single 9-inch (23 cm) crust(s).