Samantha Potter » Vancouver Food Blog

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Hey Vancouverites, did any of you make it to Urban Village Movement’s long table event this past weekend? 

If you just answered ‘no’ you need to go on a time-out and reconsider.  So take your time out while I show you the location which was this epic 6,000 square foot patio in the most unexpected location ever:

Ok, your timeout is over.  It’s good right?!  The best of Vancouver but a total hidden gem that you magically  find on Air B&B… So now you know.  If anything you should come to the next event because you know it’ll be a cool location.  Secondly, because your photos will be captured so magically by some amazing photographers (the photo above was taken by Opal Eye Photography – check her webpage out, she captures the loveliest moments).  Thirdly, you’ll meet some amazing people you’d never meet in Vancouver otherwise.  Lastly, who doesn’t want a yummy meal cooked for them?! Seriously.  Sign me up!

Alright so if you were there and you want the recipe for the tomato soup you ate TODAY is YOUR day because here it is! 

Basil Oil
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup basil
  2. 1/4 cup olive oil
  3. 1 teaspoon sea salt
Instructions
  1. Bring a small pot of water to a boil.
  2. Immerse the basil for ten seconds and after those ten seconds immediately run the basil under cold water.
  3. Pat the basil dry with a paper towel
  4. Place in a blender with olive oil and salt and blend until smooth.
Samantha Potter http://samantha-potter.com/

Fresh Tomato Soup
Serves 10
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
  2. 3 celery sticks, peeled and sliced
  3. 2 medium onions, peeled and diced
  4. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  6. 2 cubes vegetable stock
  7. 1.5 litres boiling water
  8. 28 oz canned San Marzano tomatoes
  9. 6 fresh beefsteak tomatoes
  10. Fresh basil for garnish (optional)
  11. Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Instructions
  1. Over medium heat, heat olive oil in a large sauce pan. Add carrots, celery, onions, and garlic. Cook for approximately 10 minutes (until onions are translucent and golden).
  2. In the meantime, combine the cubes of vegetable stock and boiling water in a large pot over high heat. Stir until the cubes are fully dissolved.
  3. Add the canned and fresh tomatoes to the pot and bring to a boil. Once a boil is reached, stir the contents of the pot and then turn down the heat and let it simmer for approximately 15 minutes.
  4. Once the vegetable mixture is done add it to the pot for the remainder of the simmer time along with a generous amount of salt and pepper.
  5. After 15 minutes is up blend the mixture. You will have to do this in batches as there is a lot of soup happening. I use whatever extra large bowls I have around the house to pour the blended soup into.
  6. Once everything is blended, put it in the same bowl and stir it so all of the flavors are evenly distributed.
  7. Garnish with basil (if desired) and basil oil (recipe above).
Adapted from Jamie Oliver
Adapted from Jamie Oliver
Samantha Potter http://samantha-potter.com/

This month (& every other month), I am PEANUT BUTTER obsessed. So as you can see the trend is beginning… lots of peanut buttery desserts are coming your way.  You’ll have a problem with this if the photo below doesn’t make you so happy.

It makes me a very happy camper.  As a warning, I might question you if you’re not into it so just go ahead and lie to me if you’re not.

So why not combine peanut butter cups into dessert – that only seems logical.  Am I right?! I’ll answer that.  I am.  These cupcakes are ultra moist (everyones fav word… sorry!).  Like melt in your mouth it’s so damn good.  The key to success of these cupcakes however, is the peanut butter mascarpone filling/frosting…. heaven on a cupcake.

Chocolate + Peanut Butter forever.

Chocolate Cupcake
Yields 36
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. Non-stick spray
  2. 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  3. 1 stick unsalted butter
  4. 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
  5. 1 cup granulated sugar
  6. 2 eggs and 1 egg yolk, room temperature
  7. 2 teaspoons pure vanilla
  8. 3/4 cups and 2 tablespoons gluten free all purpose flour (regular works fine as well)
  9. 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  10. 1 teaspoon baking powder
  11. 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  12. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  13. 1/2 cup full fat sour cream
  14. 1/2 cup made hot coffee
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. I used mini cupcake tins (it will make less if you use the larger tins). If choose not to use cupcake liners, definitely spray your tins with a non-stick spray and if you are using liners, spray them with the non-stick spray so you can get them off the cupcake easily.
  3. In a pan over medium heat melt together the coconut oil, butter, and chocolate chips (if you're feeling the lazy the microwave does work just fine). Either way make sure to stir frequently. Once its melted remove from heat and let cool completely.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and powder, cocoa, and salt .
  5. In a large bowl whisk together the eggs and egg yolk, the sugar, and the vanilla until smooth.
  6. Add the cooled chocolate mixture to the large bowl and whisk until smooth.
  7. Take half of the flour mixture and 1/4 cup of the sour cream and add it to to the large bowl. Stir until just combined. Add the other half of the flour mixture and the other 1/4 cup of the sour cream and again, stir until just combined. DON'T over mix!
  8. Quickly stir in the hot coffee, again, until just combined.
  9. Divide the batter evenly into your tins and bake for 15 minutes (until a toothpick comes out clean).
  10. Let the cupcakes cool COMPLETELY before icing.
Notes
  1. This yields 36 mini cupcakes
Adapted from Baker By Nature
Adapted from Baker By Nature
Samantha Potter http://samantha-potter.com/
Peanut Butter Mascarpone Frosting
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Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 12 oz mini peanut butter cups, roughly chopped (Trader Joe's has these OR just use the large ones for everything)
  2. 9 regular peanut butter cups, cut into quarters (I used the ones from Trader Joe's, Reese will work fine, but I'd cut each into sixes)
  3. 4 oz milk chocolate
  4. 1 1/2 cups icing sugar
  5. 5 tablespoons and 1 1/2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
  6. 3/4 cups creamy peanut butter
  7. 3/4 cups mascarpone cheese
Instructions
  1. In a sauce pan over medium heat, add 5 tablespoons of whipping cream and bring it to a boil.
  2. Place chocolate in a bowl and once the whipping cream has boiled, pour it over the chocolate and stir it until the chocolate has melted.
  3. In a large bowl beat the icing sugar, 1 1/2 cups of whipping cream, and peanut butter until just combined. Add mascarpone and beat until there is an even consistency.
  4. Once your cupcakes are fully cooled, cut the tops off and frost with the peanut butter frosing. Add in mini peanut butter cups to cover centre. Put the top back on and ice the top. Place one piece of the large peanut butter cup on top.
Samantha Potter http://samantha-potter.com/

Fall time is fast approaching! Which means it is time to add on those fall layers.  Hint: I am not talking about clothes! And just in case my hint wasn’t obvious enough all I’ve got to say next is: mmmmmmmmm melted butter and cheese = so good. 

However, don’t be fooled by my excitement for cheese and butter.  While fall is lovely for layers (referencing clothes this time), hearty meals, cozy nights in, and crisp fresh air outside I’m a summer kid and I always will be.  In the summer there is always something going on and you’ve never got a good enough excuse to not be outside.  You see your friends more often and everyone is always in good spirits.  So seriously… do you understand what were saying goodbye to right now: fresh berries, stone fruits, tomatoes, corn on the cob, BBQs, patio sessions, beach days, shorts, dresses, warmth, sunshine (if you live in Vancouver), and the list goes on. 

Well that was a depressing leap into reality.  However, there is nothing that can be done about this whole “seasons change” thing except for go with the flow.  So here we go…  I hereby announce that I am embracing fall with these cheddar, gruyere, and chive scones. 

For me this is the perfect way to get on board with fall fast approaching.  I love butter (a bit too much) and cheese (also a bit too much) so bring it fall!  Because with my scones nothing can stop me!!!  These scones are light and fluffy and with a bit of cayenne they pack some heat as well.  I went a little wild and did TWO kinds of cheese and oh boy did it pay off.  My recommendation to you is to serve warm with… BUTTER!  Enjoy.

Cheddar, Gruyere, and Chive Scones (gluten free!)
Yields 16
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 3/4 cups all-purpose gluten free flour (regular will work just fine if you're not into the whole gluten free thing), plus tiny bit more for your counter
  2. 5 teaspoons baking powder
  3. 3 teaspoons sugar
  4. 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  5. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  6. 3 tablespoons room temperature unsalted butter
  7. 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  8. 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
  9. 1 cup grated gruyere
  10. 1/4 cup thinly chopped chives
  11. 3/4 cup whole milk
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a food processor, pulse the flour, baking powder, sugar, cayenne pepper, and salt.
  3. Add the room temperature butter and pulse until fully combined.
  4. Add the cold butter and pulse until the butter is the size of peas (~4-6 pulses).
  5. Add in both cheeses and chives and pulse another 2-3 times until just combined.
  6. Pour in the milk and (you guessed it!) pulse until just combined (do not over pulse!!! or your scones will be tough).
  7. Remove the dough from the food processor and place on a lightly floured counter top and kneed just until the dough stays together.
  8. Flatten into a rectangle (~1/4 inch thick) and cut into 16 even pieces. Disperse each piece evenly onto your baking sheet.
  9. Bake for approximately 15 minutes or until the tops of your scones are golden brown.
Samantha Potter http://samantha-potter.com/

Ok – was getting a bit “crazy” when I made these.  My mom’s fiance loves my regular peanut butter cookies (which can be found here if you wanted to do a taste test – I recommend as they are both DELICIOUS!) and whenever I see him I make him those cookies.  This time around I was a bit bored with always making him the same peanut butter cookie and wanted to try something different.  Since I’m addicted to chocolate I obviously needed to add it to these peanut butter cookies and it was a really good call, in my opinion.  They are just as soft and creamy but a bit more light and fluffy than the usual PB cookies as the cocoa acts like a flour and gives it some texture.

The problem is you I just can’t stop eating them.  For real… they are bite/two-bite sized and a little bit too easy to just pop them into your mouth and eat them. 

It’s a good thing I usually remove them from my house and/or leave them behind wherever I make them.  Problem solved.  

You see I’m a fixer. Just like Olivia Pope in ABC’s Scandal. 

PS – If you have no clue what I’m talking about I suggest you saddle up in front of Netflix and binge watch this series – Season 4 premieres on the 25th and you won’t want to miss it!  

So… You’re going to make and then eat the cookies all while watching Scandal – I just made your Sunday perfect (I’m a fixer, I’m telling you). 

Flourless and Butterless Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie
Yields 36
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
21 min
Total Time
31 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
21 min
Total Time
31 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 1/4 cups creamy peanut butter
  2. 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  3. 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  4. 2 eggs, room temperature
  5. 1 teaspoon baking soda
  6. 2 teaspoons vanilla
  7. 3/4 cup milk chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Combine peanut butter, brown sugar, cocoa, eggs, baking soda, and vanilla in a bowl.
  3. When the mixture is nearly fully mixed, add in chocolate chips and mix well.
  4. Using a teaspoon, place dough onto a cookie sheet (its up to you how big/small you want them, just make sure there is at least an inch in between each cookie - to get 36 cookies make add just under a teaspoon of dough).
  5. Bake for 7 minutes.
  6. Let stand at least a minute before removing from cookie sheet to cooling rack or they will fall apart (it is at this point that you can eat them as well!).
Samantha Potter http://samantha-potter.com/

Hey KP this one is for you (finally!!!).  

KP is one of my many (second) cousins and requested an Indian dish dedicated to him – due to my pasta post dedicated to my other cousin Geoff (and KP’s brother).  So Kris, I expect feedback and some of that flavored salt you’re making…!

I’ve been sitting on this recipe for a while; I’ve tried to photograph it three times.  The first two times I casually made it look like orange peanut butter… not something yummy you want to eat no matter how much you love peanut butter.  Hopefully this time I’ve done an OK job and avoided the whole peanut butter resemblance thing.

When it comes to summer time dinners I’m always insanely indecisive in regards to what I want to eat.  The thing is, I could probably live off of smoothies, juices, and fresh salads in the summer so naturally I don’t want much past that.  Except Indian!  My saving grace.  **Technical Pause: While the origin of this dish is unknown (India? Pakistan? United Kingdom?), it definitely has a lot of the flavor profiles that I associate with Indian dishes and as such I am going to consider it Indian; no one knows if I’m wrong anyways!** Despite how long it looks like it’ll take you to cook your chicken (it’s really just the marinading that takes the longest!!!) this dish is so easy and hearty.  It’s also a perfect dish to serve if you’re planning on having some company – easy as pie to double it! 

Chicken Tikka
Serves 6
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
1 hr 30 min
Total Time
1 hr 35 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
1 hr 30 min
Total Time
1 hr 35 min
Ingredients
  1. 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  2. 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  3. 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  4. 1 teaspoon salt
  5. 1lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of fat
  6. 1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
  7. 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  8. 3-4 medium cloves of garlic, minced
  9. 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
Instructions
  1. Combine spices in a bowl. Press the spices evenly onto the chicken; use it all.
  2. Place the spiced chicken on a plate and cover in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to one hour.
  3. In a bowl, whisk together yogurt, oil, garlic, and ginger and set aside.
  4. Once the chicken has been in the fridge for 30 minutes to one hour start your sauce (recipe below).
  5. Fully coat chicken with yogurt mixture.
  6. Preheat oven to 400°F on broil.
  7. Bake chicken on a wire rack with a foil lined baking sheet underneath (to catch the excess yogurt) for approximately 20 minutes (flipping half way). If you don't have a wire rack right on the foil will work.
  8. Remove chicken from oven and let sit for five minutes before adding to sauce.
Adapted from Buzz Feed
Adapted from Buzz Feed
Samantha Potter http://samantha-potter.com/

Masala
Serves 6
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  2. 1 medium onion finely, diced
  3. 3-4 medium cloves of garlic, minced
  4. 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
  5. 1 serrano chile, de-seeded and minced (leave the seeds in if you want a spicier sauce)
  6. 4 tablespoons tomato paste
  7. 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  8. 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  9. 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  10. 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  11. 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  12. 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
  13. 2 teaspoons sugar
  14. 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  15. 2/3 cup heavy cream
  16. 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  17. 2 cups Basmati Rice
Instructions
  1. Cook 2 cups Basmati rice as per package instructions.
  2. Heat oil over medium heat in a large dutch oven.
  3. Add onion and chile and cook until the onion is golden, approximately 5 to 8 minutes.
  4. Add garlic, ginger, tomato paste, cayenne, coriander, cardamom, cinnamon, and pepper and continuously stir for about 3 minutes.
  5. Add crushed tomatoes, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil.
  6. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes; stir occasionally.
  7. Stir in cream and return to simmer. Keep on low until chicken is done. Once the chicken is done cut it into bit sized pieces and add it to the sauce.
  8. Add parsley and serve warm with rice.
Adapted from Buzz Feed
Adapted from Buzz Feed
Samantha Potter http://samantha-potter.com/