Choose-your-own Meals! No Platter Passing! Eat Dessert First!

Springsong Guest Authors and Guest Birders and friends have opened their recipe boxes to help you prepare a delicious meal at home to eat during our Virtual Gala. Instead of cooking from a set menu, we’ve left the choice up to you. Select what most appeals to you from the Drinks Tray, the Bread Basket, Starters, Soups & Salads and Mains, where we offer Chicken, Fish, and Vegetarian or Vegan options. And don’t forget Dessert! In fact, you can skip the mains and make a meal of starters and dessert—or soup and bread. At this Gala dinner, the choice is entirely yours.

We’ve kept the recipes simple to accommodate reduced pandemic pantries, and the servings small to ensure we keep our social distance. The ingredients favour a spring harvest—spinach, peas, asparagus, rhubarb, mint, sorrel, and thyme. There are dishes for beginner cooks and risk-takers, for those who like to cook ahead and for last-minute chefs, for gourmands who pine for retro comfort food and gourmets watching their waists.

Click on the images to read the printable recipes. As you browse, you’ll notice bird names peeking through the prose where you least expect. How many species can you find? The words bird, chicken, hen don’t count, but oriole, warblers, emu do. Send your list to alice@merilynsimonds.com with the subject line Springsong BirdFeed Contest. We’ll throw all correct answers in a nest and draw three names to win memorable gala prizes!!

 


Drinks Tray

Cocktails

Cocktails (download)

Mexican Michelada

Wayne Grady’s Michelada (download)

Mocktails

Mocktails (download)

 


Bread Basket

Crusty Almost No-Knead Bread

Merilyn Simonds’ No-Knead Crusty Loaf (Vegan) (download)

Nova Scotia Oatmeal Bread

Margaret Atwood’s Hearty Molasses Oatmeal Bread (Vegan) (download)

Zwieback

Miriam Toews’ Zweibach (download)

 


Appetizers

Trevor's Hummus

Trevor Herriot’s Hummus (Vegan) (download)

Oaxacan Peanuts

Graeme Gibson’s Oaxacan Spicy Peanuts (Vegan) (download)

Honey-Glazed Pecans

Easy Honey-Glazed Pecans (Vegan) (download)

Asparagus

Asparagus Goat CheeseTart (Vegetarian) (download)

Roasted Basalmic Thyme Mushrooms

Roasted Balsamic Thyme Mushrooms (Vegan) (download)

Fire-Roasted Tomatoes with Goat Cheese

Joseph Boyden’s Baked Goat Cheese and Fire-roasted Tomato (Vegetarian) (download)

 


Soup & Salad

Spring Sorrel Soup

Eleanor Cook’s Spring Sorrel Soup (Vegetarian) (download)

Lucia's kale Salad

Lucia Cino’s Kale Salad (Vegan) (download)

Middle Eastern Chickpea Salad

Suzanne Friemann’s Chickpea Salad (Vegan) (download)

Gnarly Fish Bisque

Brian Brett’s Gnarly Fish Bisque (download)

 


Main Dishes

Chicken

Cock-a-Leekie Soup-Stew

Graeme Gibson’s Scottish Cock-a-Leekie Soup-Stew (download)

Burmese Chicken Curry

Sean Dooley’s Burmese Curried Chicken (download)

Oven Baked Chicken Breast with Sweet Potato Mousse and Sautéed Brussel Sprouts

Spring Chicken, Birder Murder Sweet Potatoes, & Sautéed Brussels Sprouts (download)

Fish

The Mirian Quinn-Carter Memorial High Kings of Ulster Tuna Casserole

Jane Urquhart’s Kings of Ulster Tuna Casserole (download)

Salmon en croute

Salmon en croute with grilled asparagus (download)

Bachelor Birder Fish Dish

Danny Catt’s Bachelor Birder Fish Dish (download)

Vegetarian / Vegan

Spicy Lemon & Black Pepper Tofu

Elizabeth Hay’s Spicy Lemon Pepper Tofu with Broccoli (Vegan) (download)

Creamy Artichoke Gnocchi

Bridget Stutchbury’s Creaxnmy Artichoke Gnocci (Vegetarian) (download)

Mushroom Spinach Pie

Suzanne Friemann’s Spinach Mushroom Pie (Vegan) (download)

 


Desserts

Myrtle's Ginger Snaps

Lorna Crozier’s Ginger Snaps (download)

Calla Lillies

Margaret Atwood’s Calla Lilies (download)

Roasted Cherry Brownies

Roasted Cherry Brownies (Vegan) (download)

Angel's Tears

Merilyn Simonds’ Tears of Angels lava cakes (download)

Lebanese Sfouf

Suzanne Friemann’s Lebanese Turmeric Sfouf Cake (Vegan) (download)

Rhubarb Compote in Meringue Nests

Rhubarb Compote in Meringue Nests with Chantilly Cream (download)