Thursday, November 10, 2011

Recipe to Riches - Bannock Hazelnut Pie

"Mmmmm! What is this, Hon?", inquired Hubby. "It's really good!"

"It's Bannock Hazelnut Pie. I got the chance to make the winning recipe for Wednesday's Recipe to Riches show and blog about it."

"Oooh!" said Hubby with a note of surprise in his voice. "I'd actually highly recommend it. It's got lots of flavour in there. It's very good, considering there's no meat in it!"

Did he just say "It's very good, considering there's no meat in it"? My beef farmer husband makes me laugh.

I  have to say that when I saw the winning Recipe to Riches "Savoury Pie" recipe, I got really, really nervous. First off, I'm terrible at making pie crusts! They almost never turn out the way I want them to. However, when I realized that this recipe had bannock instead of pie crust, I sighed with relief. The other reason I was nervous was...well, this is Recipe to Riches! This is the Food Network! Eeeeek!

I just didn't want to mess up Recipe to Riches contestant, Melaney Gleeson-Lyall's winning recipe!

For those who don't know what bannock is, it's "any variety of flat quick breads". (According to Wikipedia). In Canada, it's known as "frybread", "scone", or "Indian bread". I remember learning about bannock in school when we studied Canadian culture/history. It wasn't until I moved to Manitoulin Island that I had a chance to try bannock for the first time at a Pow Wow. I didn't realize that some of my friends on "the Island" made scone/bannock at home, at their hunt camps, at parties, etc.

For this recipe, I first washed and prepped the veggies. Onion, celery, carrots, butternut squash...chop, chop, chop.
I grated the sweet potato.
I also set aside sweet potato to boil and then make the mashed sweet potato for the bannock.
 I finely chopped the fresh rosemary.
Look! It's even President's Choice rosemary!

Chopped roasted hazelnuts. Okay, you have no idea how difficult it is to find hazelnuts in Northern Ontario. No. I'm not kidding. I drove all the way to Sudbury (over 2 hrs by car each way) in search of the one ingredient I didn't have on hand. Hazelnuts! I scoured three stores in Sudbury. No hazelnuts. They had every other possible nut available, but no hazelnuts!

None of the stores on the Island had hazelnuts either.

"Yikes! This is hazelnut pie! Not walnut pie or macadamia nut pie!"

Fortunately for me, a friend who was in Toronto not too long ago, happened to have hazelnuts at her house. I know. What are the odds, right?

In a pot, I cooked up the vegetables, vegetable stock, and crushed hazelnut to make the stew. I just happened to have made homemade vegetable stock the other day. How handy.
The aroma throughout the house with the stewing vegetables and the fresh rosemary was mouthwatering!
I transferred the stew into a glass baking dish and proceeded to make the bannock.
In a bowl, I mixed the mashed sweet potato, flour, and other ingredients together.
Then I made the bannock to go on top of the vegetable mixture.

While this was happening, my toddler was yelling that she needed my "help". When I got to her, she had stuffed an entire roll of toilet paper into the toilet. Great! Note to self: Keep bathroom door closed when executing very important Recipe to Riches task!
Okay, I sprinkled chopped hazelnuts on top of the bannock and placed bannock on top of veggie mixture and baked in preheated oven at 350 degrees for 45 to 55 minutes.

Little One devoured her food! Not only is this dish loaded with veggies (even in the bannock!), but it's toddler approved!
The recipe was not as difficult as I led myself to believe. It sounded a bit daunting, but was actually do-able and not overly complicated. The only part that was a little labour intensive was the chopping of the vegetables. I was afraid of making the bannock, because I  had never made it before, but it turned out well! What a terrific recipe! The house smelled fantastic and the Bannock Hazelnut Pie was DELICIOUS!

Hubby is onto his third serving as I type this. He can't stop saying how delicious it is...even without meat! Can you tell he's a beef farmer?

I would definitely serve this at a dinner party. It would be great for Meatless Mondays or for when  you're having dinner guests over who are vegetarian. I would definitely buy this at the Superstore though. Why? We don't have hazelnuts in this part of Northern Ontario! Well, maybe in hazelnut coffee or hazelnut chocolate bars!

For the complete recipe, visit Recipe to Riches on the Food Network and view Bannock Hazelnut Pie.

Congratulations to Melaney Gleeson-Lyall for her winning recipe!

Recipe to Riches airs on Wednesdays at 9 pm on Food Network, and Saturdays at 8pm on Global TV.
Find them on Facebook and on Twitter to join in on the fun!

Disclosure: Recipe to Riches is compensating official Recipe to Riches bloggers with Loblaws gift cards for recreating the winning recipe and writing a review post. All opinions on this blog are honest and my own.


  1. How wonderful! I miss my home grown beef! I was raised on a farm in BC!! Thank you for being an amazing recipe tester and stepping out of your comfort zone!

  2. Melaney:
    Oh, my goodness! What a great surprise to see a comment from you here!!! :) Congrats again on your win last night! How very exciting! Fabulous recipe. My husband usually complains when I cook vegetarian dishes, because he absolutely needs meat (or so he says!). This time, however, he LOVED the dish! Yay! :)

  3. Great blog post Chris! I have tried bannock and really liked it. I am curious as to what this recipe tastes like and will for sure pick some up at our Superstore. I tried the peach bliss and liked it. It wasn't what I thought it would be. Very different from the one on the show, but still good.

  4. I thought it was very cool to see a Coast Salish Chef on recipe to Riches, because many of the kids that I work with are Coast Salish. I can imagine hazelnuts being hard for you to find-here in BC they are pretty common, and there is even a hazelnut farm out in the valley about an hour from the city. I might have to try that recipe with the teens I work with!

  5. Scattered Mom:
    Thanks so much for popping by and leaving a comment :) Yes, the hazelnuts were impossible to find (thank goodness for Torontonian friend)! We have walnut trees on our farm. I was tempted!!! LOL!

  6. Chantal:
    Thanks! :) Oh, I agree with you about the Peach Bliss. I was expecting more of a light cake layer and then the peaches and cheesecake layer. I didn't realize it would be so much cheesecake. The version on the show was definitely different. It was a good cake and Hubby really enjoyed it. He LOVES cheesecake though!

    I guess to make it into a PC product, they had to modify the original. Still good :) I liked it. I have to say that I am addicted to Glo's Luscious Lemon Pudding cakes though! I love anything/everything lemon.

  7. I followed your link from the Facebook page. Love your blog! I am a big fan of Melanie and her recipe and was thrilled to read such a positive review. I plan to make the recipe myself and purchase to compare. Nice to meet you!

  8. Lyndsay:
    When I saw this comment, I felt a little starstruck! I actually do follow your blog, but haven't had a chance to comment! Thank you for following me over here and commenting!

    I also plan on buying the savoury bannock pie at the store this weekend for comparison. I love the recipe posted on the Recipe to Riches site, so this should be interesting!

  9. Thank you ladies!
    It's been fun being and ambassador for the First Nations peeps! It's surreal!
    It's definitely exciting!
    Have a great day!!
    Pieday Friday!