November 3, 2017
Cajun Tiger Shrimp with Artichoke Bacon Dip…
Liane is on a roll with her research and development. The treat this upcoming weekend is a dish that we have enjoyed on our family culinary trips. It is a tasty concoction of Cajun Tiger Shrimp with an Artichoke and Bacon Dip. This recipe is sure to give your taste buds a great workout. Personally, I would have them with a cold white wine but mind you, I’m also fond of a Bloody Caesar to go along with this dish. By the way, Liane went all out last week and created another Po’Boy, a Southern Buttermilk Fried version of the famous sandwich. Talk about delicious!
Don’t forget that the Ottawa Valley Curling Association is in town this weekend. This is the 12th anniversary of this event and it’s a World Curling Tour Event taking place at our very own North Grenville Curling Club. Salamanders is sponsoring a team again this year, the Unionville Team. Yay!
Also, the bookings are coming in fast and furious for Christmas parties so please call Liane as soon as you can to book your special party. We can’t believe that our Christmas decorations are going up shortly. Our decorator Emma is raring to go: it’s her favourite season for decorating the restaurant. We have already picked the tree that will grace the patio from our family farm in Merrickville.So, there is lots going on at Salamanders of Kemptville. See you soon!
October 24, 2017
Po’Boys, the continuing saga…
The beat goes on. Over the past couple of weeks, we announced that the famous New Orleans Po’Boy sandwiches had arrived at Salamanders of Kemptville. The first one we presented was the Margarita Chicken Po’Boy Sandwich and the second was the Blackened Shrimp Po’Boy. Both are scrumpdillyicious! We are now introducing: the Pulled Pork Po’Boy.
In keeping with what we started, we use Rick’s (from Grahame’s Bakery) terrifical mini-French bread that is crusty on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. When you place it, buttered, on the grille for just a minute, the result is fabulous.
For the Pulled Pork Po’Boy, we start with our fabulous pulled pork, carefully prepared to be especially flavorful. We pile the pulled pork on the toasted bread and squirt some of our home-made barbecue sauce over it. Then we cover it with shaved cabbage and jalapeno laced Havarti cheese and smother the lot with a red-onion and horse radish aioli.
Now, there are two ways of eating our Salamanders of Kemptville Po’Boys: you can get fancy and use a knife and fork; or you can dig in with lots of napkins. We always recommend the latter, even if it’s not pretty. So come on in and try one of our Po’Boys on for size, the Margarita Chicken, the Blackened Shrimp or the Pulled Pork. And be part of our Tasting Group as we introduce more varieties over the next couple of months.
October 14, 2017
Po’Boys have arrived (continued)!
Last week we announced that the famous New Orleans Po’Boy sandwiches had arrived at Salamanders of Kemptville. The first one we presented was the Margarita Chicken Po’Boy Sandwich. Now, we have the Blackened Shrimp Po’Boy!
We start with the same bread. Rick’s (from Grahame’s Bakery) terrifical mini-French bread that is crusty on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. When you place it, buttered, on the grille for just a minute, the result is fabulous.
Next, you sauté four large shrimp in Cajun blackening spice and line them up on your bread. You then layer on Liane’s bacon-tomato remoulade, some jalapeno havarti, shredded cabbage and green onions. Pop in the oven briefly to melt the cheese and voila, taste-bud sensation. You can moderate the spice on your Blackened Shrimp Po’Boy to match your taste. There is also a selection of sides to go with it.
Oh, and we did mention messiness in our last blog? The Blackened Shrimp Po’Boy is particularly messy. You’ll be licking your fingers for sure. So come on in and try one of our Po’Boys on for size, either the Margarita Chicken or the Blackened Shrimp. More varieties are coming, so stay tuned!
October 6, 2017
Po’Boys have arrived!
The famous New Orleans Po’Boy sandwiches have arrived at Salamanders of Kemptville. Over the next couple of months, we will be presenting a variety of this tasty treat to our guests. Watch for it on our lunch and dinner specials board. The first one we are presenting is the Margarita Chicken Po’Boy Sandwich.
So, first you start with the right bread. Rick at Grahame’s Bakery has created a mini-French bread that is crusty on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. It’s perfect for cutting lengthwise and leaving a long hinge along the one side. Thanks, Rick!
Then, you marinate the chicken in a Tequila and lime concoction and deep fry some roasted red pepper straws. Once you have lightly toasted the bread on the grille, the sandwich is assembled with a lovely chipotle and lime aioli, finely shredded cabbage and cheese.
Now, some folks like fries with their Po’Boy, others like salad and still others prefer coleslaw. Whatever you want as a side is no issue at Salamanders of Kemptville.
The highlight of the Po’Boy is its messiness. If your fingers don’t get saucy, it’s not a good Po’Boy. And we won’t mind your asking for more napkins, for sure.
So come on in and try one of our Po’Boys on for size. And, stay tuned for the others being perfected in our kitchen: shrimp, pulled pork, roast beef, etc. The fall is looking great at Salamanders of Kemptville!
August 10, 2017
New arrivals at Salamanders of Kemptville
In our last blog, we mentioned that Salamanders is undertaking to introduce some new dishes to our guests. Actually, for some of our guests, these recipes will bring them back to their travels in the Low Country. One of these to look for shortly is the Po’Boy. A Po’Boy is a traditional sandwich from Louisiana, consisting of either meat, i.e. roast beef or chicken, or seafood, particularly shrimp. The sandwich bread is baguette-like New Orleans style French bread, known for its crisp crust and fluffy centre. The sauces that go on the sandwich are either remoulade or assorted spicy gravies. Watch the Salamanders Face Book page for when these tasty sandwiches are on our specials menu. As always at Salamanders, you’ll be able to select your level of spiciness.
Last week, we were all treated to a Chocolate-Lime Mousse cake. What a wonder that was! A light cake with a dark chocolate layer, then key lime on top of that…With a tad of whipped cream and some vanilla ice-cream, it was a taste sensation, kind of a cross between a rich chocolate cake and a key-lime pie. As Grandma Richardson would have said: “Just a wee piece o’ fluff.” The other day, someone made a reservation on the condition that we still had our Bread Pudding with Rum Sauce on the menu; well, they would have reserved anyway, but it does demonstrate how faithful our guests can be to their old favourites. One in particular is the Annapolis Valley Apple Torte, for which folks travel for miles. The point is, when you come to Salamanders, keep some room for a piece of our special, made-on-site desserts, some available all the time, some as a special treat for the week (or till we run out and try something else). Some of our guests that join us as groups each order a different dessert, then “play around the clock,” taking a healthy bite and passing their dessert on the next person to their right. That way, folks get to try a great assortment of tasty tidbits. Coming this fall, you will wish to watch for two traditional pies from our family’s extensive recipe book: sugar pie and raisin (or winter) pie, both from Grandma Yvonne, who was still baking into her early nineties.
So, stay tuned in to Salamanders of Kemptville for special treats. We really mean it when we say: “Good Food. Good People.”
February 16, 2017
Salamanders, a Family Tradition
As you are aware, Salamanders of Kemptville boasts of 5C cuisine; “Cajun, Creole and Low Country Cooking with a Canadian Twist.” But where do our dishes come from? We confess to being “food tourists” - whenever we travel, whether on holidays or for business, we collect food experiences. There is a huge difference between an “event,” where you sit down and have a meal that you immediately forget about, and an “experience,” where you savour the hard work of an imaginative chef or team of people. So, whenever the Cormier family has had a food “experience,” we have tried to bring it on home and adapt it to Canadian taste buds.
Take, for example, our Annapolis Valley Apple Torte. Many years ago, Paul Cormier, the family patriarch was lending a helping hand to a team of maritime food producers with a marketing program called “A Taste of Nova Scotia.” One of the recipes came from Scotian Gold, an apple producer from the Annapolis Valley just North of Acadian country. So, out came the recipe for a mouth watering recipe, eventually published in the Taste of Nova Scotia cookbook. We used this recipe in our family for years before opening Salamanders. And now, we are pleased to share it with our guests.
Our Breaded Ravioli is a favourite from Orlando, Florida and we were first introduced to blackening spice many years ago while on holiday in St. Augustine, Florida. We have pulled recipes from a terrific restaurant in Hilton Head, South Carolina called Hudson’s. We have exchanged cookbooks with this fine establishment, which specializes in seafood right on and from the water (in fact, there is a shrimp boat tied up to their dock).
Of course, we also need to ensure that we provide our guests with dishes that are more ordinary, such as nachos and hamburgers. However, we do our very best to make the ordinary extraordinary, such as putting Bacon Jam on our Angus burgers from time to time. If you see it on special one day, it is definitely worth the experience. So, do come in and enjoy our menu and our off menu dishes: chances are you may be trying something new that we have picked up in another one of our trips. The pictures on the walls of the family side of the restaurant depict some of the places where we have enjoyed great food, such as the Cottage in Hilton Head. And something else we have learned from our travels is to live up to our motto: “Great food! Great people!”
December 1, 2016
The 5 C's
Salamanders of Kemptville prides itself in its 5C cooking: Cajun, Creole and Low Country Cooking with a Canadian Twist. This results from our family’s history and travels over the years.
First of all, our Cormier name and family originated in Acadia, the 18th century French colony established just North of Halifax, Nova Scotia. So, Salamanders has a number of Acadian-inspired family dishes, which tend to be more French Canadian. Meanwhile, of course, the Acadians were expelled from Nova Scotia in 1755 and some 165 families ended up in the French colony of Louisiana. Over time, Acadians became Cajuns, with typical dishes from that region, involving a fair amount of fish and seafood and distinctive spices. It’s only a hop, skip and jump to include Creole dishes that also have their unique flavours, but are very French fusion.
Finally, our family has enjoyed many trips into the low County of the US. We particularly enjoy the food from South Carolina (e.g. the Hilton Head area), Georgia and Florida. These states have an excellent cuisine and we are happy to interpret them to Canadian taste buds. That’s the point, by the way: the culinary mission of the Salamanders kitchen team is to bring Cajun, Creole and Low County cooking to the colder climes of Canada and to the particular taste buds of Canadians. We hope you enjoy this fusion of flavours!