Home Grown Recipes

The recipes listed here primarily use ingredients that can be grown or obtained locally. If you have a tasty recipe that you'd like to share, please email it to us.

Listed in alphabetical order.

Apple and Red Wine Soup

CezzaineReminiscent of a mulled wine, this flavourful soup is great after
a day out of doors.  Consider serving it in mugs.

Preparation Time: 10 to 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 14 minutes

½ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
6 cups peeled apple slices (about 9 medium apples or 1½ pounds)
1 cinnamon stick
1 - inch piece vanilla bean
zest (thin yellow rind) of 1 lemon, in long strips
¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 tablespoon arrowroot
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons red currant jelly
2 cups dry red wine

½ cup whipping cream
1 ½ tablespoons icing sugar
¼ teaspoon vanilla
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

In a large saucepan, combine 3 cups water, brown sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil and add apples, cinnamon stick, vanilla bean, lemon zest, and nutmeg.

Reduce heat and cook, covered, over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, or until the apples are tender.

Remove the cinnamon stick, vanilla bean, and lemon zest. Cool slightly; then pure in a blender. (A blender produces a better texture than a food processor. If you have neither, pass the mixture through a sieve). 

Dissolve the arrowroot in 2 tablespoons cold water and then stir into the apple mixture. Stirring constantly, boil gently for three minutes.

Stir in lemon juice and red currant jelly. Heat gently just until jelly melts.

Remove from heat.  Cool. Store in a covered glass jar in the refrigerator or another cold place. The mixture keeps well for days.

To serve, return to a saucepan. Stir in wine and simmer until heated through.

Meanwhile, in a chilled bowl, whip cream, adding sugar and vanilla when it starts to thicken. Then continue whipping until stiff.

Pour hot soup into heated mugs and top each serving with a dollop of the whipped cream and a  sprinkling of cinnamon.   

Makes 6 servings.

Local Substitutions: Several of the ingredients in this recipe you can acquire locally, including cream, currant jelly, and the red wine.


Au Gratin Cabbage

serves 4

2 cups cabbage (shredded)
½ cup carrots (shredded)
1/3 cup green onions (chopped)

Saute until crisp-tender in a frying pan coated with cooking spray.

Transfer to greased 1 quart/1 L baking dish.

½ cup milk
1 egg
3 tablespoons cheese (grated)

Combine in a small bowl.
Pour over vegetables.
Garnish with 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
and 1 tablespoon of Parmesan cheese.

Bake at 350F for 30 - 35 minutes.

Local Substitutions: All the ingredients in this recipe you can acquire or make from local sources. If you have access to local cream, you can use home churned butter in place of the cooking spray, and homemade cheese in this recipe.


Cabbage and Tomato Sauce

Brown in 1 T. oil:Photo by Michelle Roberge
1 onion, chopped

Add 3 (home canned) tomatoes, peeled and sliced

Stir. Cover and simmer 3 minutes.
Add: 1/4 medium cabbage, cut in small pieces

Cover and cook on low 5 minutes.

Add: salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup water (optional - for a juicier sauce)

Cover and cook 10 - 15 minutes, until cabbage is tender.

For a fully 'homegrown' meal, serve with mashed garden potatoes.

Local Substitutions: If you have access to local cream, you can use home churned butter instead of the oil in this recipe.


Cajun Baked Rabbit

For a large roaster rabbit.

Leave the rabbit whole. Season well with salt and black pepper.

Stuff the cavity of the rabbit with large chunks of onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic.

Then, wrap slices of bacon around the rabbit and secure with toothpicks.

Pour a small amount (1 - 2 Tbsp) of vegetable oil in a roasting pan. Place the rabbit in the roasting pan and add about a ¼ cup of water.

Cover and bake at 350 degrees F for 2 – 3 hours or until tender.

Remove cover for the last ½ hour of baking time to allow rabbit to brown.

Local Substitutions: You can purchase locally raised rabbits - see our Producer Directory for listings. All the veggies in this recipe can be grown locally, or purchased at the Farmers Market in the summer.


Creamy Carrot Soup

1 Onion chopped
2 Tablespoons Butter
3 Cups Chopped Carrots
2 Tablespoons Rice
1 Quart Chicken Stock
Salt and Pepper

Saute onion in butter until clear.

Add carrots, rice, chicken stock, and seasoning.

Bring to a boil.  Boil on medium to low heat for about 20 minutes until carrots are tender.

Remove from heat.

Pour into blender.  Puree.

Serve with sour cream on top.

Local Substitutions: If you have access to local cream, you can use home churned butter in this recipe. Rice, although not very local, is grown as close to California. Chicken stock is easy to make from local free-range chickens (no cubes necessary!).


Crab Apple Juice

~ one heaping 4-liter ice cream pail of crab apples cut into halves
~ 5 teaspoons of cream of tartar
~ cinnamon bark and cloves

Place the crab apples in a large ceramic/glass bowl and pour 20 cups of boiling water over them. Sprinkle with the cream of tartar and leave for 24 hours.
Next day strain the mixture through cheesecloth into a large pot and
add 1.5 cups of sugar [or to taste].  Boil for 5 minutes, then pour into hot jars with some cinnamon bark and cloves.  Freeze for future use.
Makes about 5 liters.

Local Substitutions: Don’t forget crab apples are wonderfully baked, in pies, muffins, or dried and in fruit leather. Yummy!


Honeybee Garden

bee on sunflowerNot our usual recipe type, but an important one nonetheless.


Pickled Beets

Choose young tender beets. Cut off tops, leaving 1 inch of stem and root. Wash thoroughly. Cover with water and cook until tender, approximately 15 to 20 minutes, depending on size. Dip in cold water until cool enough to handle. Slip off skins and cut off remaining tops and roots. Cut into cubes, slices, or quarters. If quite small, beets may be left whole.
Combine, vinegar, sugar, beet juice, and spices. Heat until sugar is dissolved. Pack beets in clean jars and add hot pickling liquid, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Process 15 minutes in a boiling water bath. Makes about 3 pints/ 500 ml jars.

Note: Pickled beets can be refrigerated for several weeks and can be eaten in 24 hours


Salmon Stuffed Vine Ripe Tomatoes

Check seasonal sustainability profiles for the most sustainable choice. Download Canada's Seafood Guide to help you.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Hollow out tomatoes by cutting off the top with a paring knife and scooping out the inside with a teaspoon and set aside.

Remove any bones or sinew from salmon. Lightly salt and pepper salmon. Heat olive oil in a skillet until smoking. Place salmon seasoned side down in skillet and brown one side removing when browned (approx 2-3 min). This step imparts flavor into the dish but does not cook the salmon entirely. Set salmon aside to cool.

In the same skillet add shallot, garlic, mushrooms, capers, artichoke hearts, and salt, and pepper to taste. Saute over medium heat until the mushrooms have browned slightly and removed from heat.

In a large mixing bowl, break apart the salmon and add the mushroom mixture and cheese and combine well. Stuff the tomatoes with the salmon mix. Sprinkle a few drops of olive oil over the tomatoes and bake at 350 degrees for about 12-15 min. Remove stuffed tomatoes and serve hot with your favorite rice.

Serves four.

From www.seachoice.org

Local Substitutions: Grab your fishing rod and head out to catch yourself a nice big fish (trout or salmon) to use in this delicious recipe! Most of the veggies in this recipe can be grown in your garden or greenhouse or picked up at the Farmers Market in the summer.


Shepherd's Pie

8 - 10 medium potatoes - butter and milk to taste for mashed potatoes
1 - 1 1/2 lb ground burger
1 onion
1 cup each corn and peas (fresh or frozen)
1 cup grated cheese

Make mashed potatoes. In a cast-iron frying pan, brown burger. Add finely chopped onion. Cook until onion is clear colored. Add corn and peas. Cover burger mixture with mashed potatoes. Top with cheese. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes.

Local Substitutions: If you have access to local milk and cream, you can use home churned butter, and if you are ambitious you can also make your own cheese. As for the corn, some people in Vanderhoof are able to grow corn in their gardens, but overall corn doesn't grow well here. If YOU know the secret to grow good corn in Vanderhoof, please share it with the Network.

Spinach Squares

3 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup  flour
1 teaspoon baking powder

Mix together

2-2 1/2 cups  cheese (shredded)
8 ounces fresh spinach (chopped)

Mix in and press into greased square baking pan.

Bake in a preheated oven at 350F / 180C until a knife comes out clean, 30-35 minutes.

Serves 4 people.

Local Substitutions: The spinach can be grown in your garden, and is one of the easiest vegetables to grow. Look in our producer directory for local wheat/flour producer, and egg producers.


Spring Greens Salad

2 green onions (chopped)
1 small red onion (cut into thin rings)
1 cup bean sprouts or radishes
½ cup bacon pieces (cooked & crumbled)
2 - 3 hard-cooked eggs (sliced)
½ cup walnuts or slivered almonds (toasted)

Basic Vinaigrette Dressing:
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil or nut oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

Combine in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Shake well.

Local Substitutions: The greens can be grown in your garden. Look in our producer directory for local pig and/or pig meat availability, as well as local egg producers.


Strawberry Pie


Local Substitutions: If you have access to local milk and cream, you can use that to whip and serve with this dessert. Strawberries grow well in Vanderhoof. If you plan on making this recipe out of the growing season, consider substituting the fresh strawberries for your garden grew frozen strawberries.


Sweet and Sour Swiss Chard

1 pound/500 g Swiss Chard
    (multiple colors preferred)
Rinse, pat dry, and remove stems.  Chop stems diagonally into small pieces.  Stack leaves, roll up and slice in 1-inch strips. Keep separate from stems. Set aside.
1 medium onion (diced)
In a deep frypan, saute in 2 teaspoons olive oil over med. Heat until softened. 5 minutes.
¼ cup dried cranberries or raisins
2 cloves garlic (minced)
3 TBS white or cider vinegar
11/2 teaspoons sugar
salt and pepper to taste
Add along with chard stems, cover, and cook for 8 mins.  Place chopped leaves on top of the mixture.  Do not stir in!  Cover and cook another 2 mins.  Remove from heat, stir and serve.


Sunshine Breakfast

Soak 1/2 cup of Whole Wheat Kernels in about 3 cups of water overnight
Add more water in the morning if the water is gone.

Gently simmer until the wheat is soft. (About 1 hour)

Add other tasty bits: Cut up the apple, etc. as you like.

Sweeten to taste with local honey.
Serves 4 - 6 people.

Note:  This is a traditional Polish breakfast often eaten at Christmas time.


Tomato Sauce

Tomato sauce made with fresh tomatoes tastes quite different from a sauce made of canned or stewed tomatoes.  Light and sweet, it's good on pasta, rice, mashed potatoes, meat, fish, poultry.

1        onion, chopped
1        clove garlic, crushed
2        Tbsp olive oil
½ lb    local beef
3        large tomatoes (or 6 small)
1Tbsp  dried or fresh basil
2Tbsp  fresh parsley, chopped
salt and pepper

Saute onion and garlic briefly in oil before adding beef.  Cook over medium heat until meat turns gray.  Chop and add tomatoes, basil, and parsley.  Cover and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Makes 2 cups.  


Turnip Puff

5 cups diced turnip
2 beaten eggs
1.5 cups apple sauce
3 T flour
2 T butter
1 T brown sugar
¾ tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder

Peel and dice turnip. Steam until tender, then mash. Beat in the rest of the ingredients. Transfer to a greased casserole dish and chill at least 30 min. [or make the day ahead]. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

Local Substitutions: Turnips are easy to grow in a vegetable garden. The eggs and apples in this recipe can be sourced locally if you don't have chickens or apple trees yourself.


Winter Medley

1 Medium sized Turnip
2 Medium sized Potatoes
2 Medium sized Carrots
1/2 Medium sized Onion

Peel and chop turnip, potatoes, and carrots. Boil in separate pots. Sautee chopped onion in a tablespoon of butter. Mash vegetables and mix together in a casserole dish. Add onion, salt, and pepper to taste, and tbsp butter. Stir well. Dot top of casserole with butter. Sprinkle lightly with cayenne and place in the oven at 350 degrees F until the butter has melted and the top is lightly browned. Best served with pork or chicken and with a spicy, tangy compliment like pickles or sauerkraut.

Local Substitutions: This recipe is truly local - you can grow all the main ingredients in your own garden. If you have access to local milk and cream, you can use home churned butter. You can also find locally raised pork and chicken.

Winter Vegetable Soup

3 medium beets
2 tsp olive oil
1 large onion [cut into 1 inch chunks]
2 glove garlic
2 carrots [cut into 1 inch chunks]
2 parsnips [cut into 1 inch chunks]
½ lb. rutabaga [peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks]
2 small turnips [cut into 1 inch chunks]
6 cups homemade chicken broth [or low salt bouillon cubes]
1 sprig rosemary [or ½ tsp. dried]
6 large springs of parsley or handful of chopped up chives

1. Peel beets and cut in to 1 inch chunks. Cook in boiling water for 20 minutes or until almost tender. Drain and reserve.
2. Meanwhile in a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the oil. Add onion and cook on low for a few minutes, then add garlic for a few minutes more.
3. Add carrots, parsnips, rutabaga, and turnips. Cook for a few minutes.
4. Add stock, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until vegetables are almost tender.
5. Add beets and cook 10 minutes longer. Taste and adjust seasonings. Garnish each bowl with parsley or chives.

Local Substitutions: This recipe is truly local - you can grow all the main ingredients in your own garden (except the olives for the olive oil). If you have access to local milk and cream, you can use home churned butter as a substitute for the olive oil. You can also find locally raised chicken to make the chicken broth.