bacon wrapped garlic scapes

bacon wrapped garlic scapes

At Kootenay Spice, we love bacon nearly as much as we love garlic (but not quite). Naturally, combining the two only seemed to make sense, which brought us to thoroughly enjoy trying out these bacon wrapped garlic scapes!

Although we had made most of ours into garlic scape pesto, we are very happy that we decided to freeze a few full scapes, knowing we would eventually crave that fresh, green garlicky taste that you can only harvest at one time of the year. Of course, frozen is not nearly as good as fresh, but it’s the least we could do to savour that flavour at least a little longer than a couple of months!

garlic scapes

Unfortunately, garlic scapes are not particularly easy to come by, especially when they are not in season. Don’t fret, fresh asparagus also works very well for this recipe, as do long green bean or celery stalks.

This recipe will feed 2 people as a side and you will need:

6 8-10 inch garlic scapes
6 pieces of bacon
1 tablespoon Kootenay Spice lemon garlic pepper

Heat a large skillet over medium to high heat.

Tightly wrap each piece of garlic (or asparagus, what have you) in a piece of bacon.

pre cooked bacon wrapped garlic scapes

Sprinkle the bacon wrapped scapes with Kootenay Spice Lemon Garlic Pepper.

Cook the bacon wrapped scapes until the bacon is crisp and the garlic scape is soft, about 15 minutes, flipping 3-4 times.

bacon wrapped garlic scapes

Remove from the pan onto paper towel to absorb some of the moisture. Serve & enjoy!

finished grilled jerk corn

grilled jerk corn

This dish was a new one for us to try in the Kootenay Spice kitchen last weekend, and we are so happy we did! It is similar to a Mexican Elote, however we have tweaked it enough, that we don’t feel we can quite call it one!

You will want to make the jerk cream sauce and put the corn into water to soak about an hour ahead of lighting the grill.

grilled jerk corn ingredients

This recipe is enough for 4 as a side and you will need:

2 ears of corn, in husks
2 tablespoons mayo
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon soft cream cheese
½ tsp lemon juice
1 tablespoon Kootenay Jerk
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
½ cup feta cheese, crumbled finely

To make the jerk cream sauce, blend the mayo, sour cream, cream cheese, lemon juice and Kootenay Jerk together in a small bowl. Seal and set aside in the refrigerator.

jerk cream sauce

Place the corn in a sink or bowl, covered in water. Let soak about an hour.

Heat your grill to medium. Place the soaked corn (still in husks) on the grill for 20 minutes, flipping every 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat, let cool slightly and carefully remove the husks.

grilling corn

Gently oil the corn cobs and return to the grill. Cook another 20 minutes, flipping every 2-3 minutes until nicely toasted.

corn, jerk sauce & cheeses

Let corn cobs cool. While they are cooling, grate the parmesan and crumble the feta (if you haven’t already). Sprinkle the blend of cheeses onto a flat surface.

brushing corn

Brush cobs generously with jerk cream sauce.

rolling corn in cheese

Roll the coated cobs in the cheese mixture.

finished grilled jerk corn

Gently cut the cobs in half and enjoy your spicy, cheesy corn!

grilled peaches & rosemary pork tenderloin

grilled peaches & rosemary pork tenderloin

Grilling Peaches

It’s the beginning of peach season in the Kootenays & Okanagan and at Kootenay Spice, we are very excited! We love the juiciness, sweetness and versatility of the fruit.

A recipe we love using peaches for is grilled peaches & rosemary pork tenderloin. The combination of grilled peaches, honey and chili flakes topped with a couple of Kootenay Spice’s newest flavours, Smoked Pepper and Rosemary Balsamic Drizzle, gives the tenderloin a flavour you can’t get anywhere else! This past week we were fortunate to receive a jar of super-delicious, unpasteurized honey from a local farm, Earthy Organics, which makes the flavour of this recipe that much better!

grilled peaches & rosemary pork tenderloin ingredients

This recipe will make 2 full pork tenderloins and you will need:

peach sauce
4 peaches
½ cup honey
½ cup butter
¼ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon chili flakes
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons Kootenay Spice Rosemary Balsamic Drizzle

tenderloin ingredients

2 pork tenderloins
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon Kootenay Spice Smoked Pepper
2 – 3 sprigs fresh rosemary

Peach Sauce

Put the honey and butter into a medium saucepan and cook over medium-low heat until the butter has melted. Add the brown sugar until dissolved. Stir often, as the sugar and butter will burn easily. Add the cinnamon, chili flakes & nutmeg and continue to heat for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, cover and set aside. Let cool.

sliced peaches

Slice the peaches into quarters. If you have extra peach pieces (or if a peach slice breaks as you’re pulling it off the pit or something), add them to the honey mixture.

peaches in honey sauce

Gently stir the peaches into the honey sauce and place skin-side-down on a medium-high, oiled grill. Cook until the skin of the peach is beginning to char, about 6-8 minutes.

Grilling Peaches

Flip the peach slices & grill each side for 2-3 minutes, taking care not to burn.

grilled peaches

Remove the peaches from the grill and put them back into the pot with the remaining honey mixture. Cover and set aside while cooking the tenderloins.


Use the rosemary sprigs to brush the tenderloins with olive oil, 1 tablespoon each. Sprinkle with Kootenay Spice Smoked Pepper, ½ tablespoon each.

brushing tenderloin

Place on the medium-high heated grill and cook 10-15 minutes, flipping every 2 minutes, until an internal temperature of 140˚F.

cooking tenderloin

Wrap both tenderloins topped with rosemary sprigs in a sheet of tinfoil and let rest on the counter for 10 minutes.

rosemary on tenderloin

Remove the rosemary sprigs and slice the tenderloin into 1 inch or thicker medallions.

finished tenderloin

Serve topped with peaches, honey sauce and Kootenay Spice Rosemary Balsamic Drizzle.

grilled peaches & rosemary pork tenderloin


Kootenay Spice is now a little less salty

One of the most frequent requests Kootenay Spice has gotten at our local vendor markets is for reduced salt and/or salt free products. Of course, we have had some salt free and low-salt choices from the very beginning, but have recently decided to take it a step further.

As many of you know, we have always kept our salt levels to a minimum. This July, we have completely taken the salt out of some of our products that did not contain or require much in the first place. Of course, some flavours like Kootenay Jerk and Cajun Seasoning require salt to taste as good as they do; others are just as good without (you can always add a sprinkle of Smoked Rock Salt if you would rather have a little in your meal).

Kootenay Spice’s salt free product listing now includes:

Garlic Pepper
Grilled Chicken
4 Pepper Blend (Ground Pepper)
Herbs de Provence
Italian Seasoning
Kootenay Chicken
Kootenay Fish
Lemon Garlic Pepper
Garlic Pepper
Poultry Seasoning
Smoked Pepper (NEW!)

no salt label large

As always, we can always conjure up a custom order of these products with a little bit of salt, or our other products with a little less. Be sure to send us an email before you order and we’ll make things work for you!

If you are going to add a little salt of your own, don’t forget about our Seasoned and Lemon Salts too!


Garlic Scape

garlic scape pesto

It is garlic scape season in the West Kootenay and at Kootenay Spice we couldn’t be happier! Not only is it the sole time of year to get the fresh & tasty treat, but it also means that the garlic bulbs will be ready for harvest in just a few more weeks!

Garlic Scape

Garlic scapes are the flower stalks that grow up the centre of the plant. They are a sweet and spicy garlic delicacy! Once they have curled or corkscrewed into a full circle, it is time to cut them off. Cut the scapes just above the last set of leaves of the plant.

cutting garlic scapes

We are lucky to have about 50 garlic plants growing in our gardens & clipped the scapes last week. We were also very excited to find large bundles of scapes from Grand Forks Farms at last week’s Trail Market for only $3/bag! Naturally, we couldn’t resist buying a couple of bags, resulting in a total of about 3 pounds of scapes (including our own)!

garlic scapes

Our absolute favourite thing to do with the garlic scapes is make pesto. We like to whip up as much as we can and freeze it in ice cube trays for easy use. This year we have also set a handful of scapes aside to try a few new recipes like stir-fry and wrapping them in bacon. We are very excited to try the new dishes and will be sure to share the recipes with you!

If you grow your own garlic or can find scapes at your local vendor’s market, you will definitely want to try this super-simple recipe! Don’t forget to pick up (or pick your own) fresh basil too!

(sorry, we forgot the pepper and basil in the pic)

(sorry, we forgot the pepper and basil in the pic)

For one batch of pesto (approx. 3 cups), you will need the following:

1 lb garlic scapes, cut into 2 – 4 inch pieces
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup grated parmesan
1 cup fresh basil
1 tablespoon lemon juice (approx. ½ fresh lemon, squeezed)
Smoked rock salt to taste
Ground pepper to taste

(optional) 1 cup cashews

Roughly chop the garlic scapes into chunks. Put them in a food processor with the oil, parmesan, basil, lemon juice and (optional) cashews. Chop until they form a paste and add the salt and pepper. A single recipe should take about 8 – 10 minutes of processing.

pureed pesto

Once the pesto is processed, transfer the paste to a sealed bag.

garlic scape pesto in bag

Carefully clip a small piece of the corner of the bag and squeeze evenly into ice cube trays.

garlic scape pest into trays

Freeze for a couple of days and transfer the cubes to a sealed bag for better storage.

pesto in ice cube trays

Now you have delicious garlic scape pesto at the ready! Take cubes out of the freezer as you need them. Some of our favourite treats include pesto chicken, pasta or simply spread on crackers or melba toast! Enjoy!

the power of print


A view down the Columbia River near the community of Genelle, BC, about 15 minutes from Trail.

As we’ve mentioned before in our community post, we live in a small hamlet minutes outside of a southern interior BC town of about 7,500 people. Trail, as well as many communities in the West Kootenay, has a wonderful, well read newspaper that is a great supporter of local business.

June 7 was the first Outdoor Trail Market for 2013 and was our busiest Kootenay Spice venue yet! The weather was perfect and we owe much thanks to an article printed in the local paper, the Trail Times. Many customers stopped by our stand just because they had read about us in the paper!

Dan McIlmoyle Kootenay Spice pic for Trail Times

Dan’s photo that appeared with the market article in the Trail Times.

This past Thursday, a version of the article was also featured in the West Kootenay Advertiser, a regional publication that is delivered to 25,000 homes in the West Kootenay. We have already received phone orders as a result! To read the article, click here.

We make a conscious effort to support local business and appreciate so much when others do the same!

We look forward to the next Trail Market on June 21. We have also been looking into other local summer markets like the Saturday market in Castlegar (every Saturday from 9 – 1). Be sure to follow us on Facebook, we will let you know where we will be and when we will be there!

DSC05060 (1)

garlic aioli

I’m sure we’ve mentioned before that at Kootenay Spice, we absolutely love garlic! This garlic aioli recipe is a long-time favourite of ours, known to many of our friends as ‘that awesome garlic sauce’.

We use this sauce with so many meals! Dipping crab, steaks, lobster, pork, any meat really! It also makes a fabulous base for Caesar salad dressing. If you love garlic, this is a must-try recipe!

You will need:


1 room temperature egg yolk (let egg sit at room temperature for about an hour before separating)
½ cup vegetable oil
5 cloves garlic
Pinch rock salt
Splash of lemon  juice

First, we need to create somewhat of a paste with the garlic. Start off by carefully squishing it with the base of the blade of a large knife and chopping it into small pieces. Add a pinch of rock salt (we use Kootenay Spice Smoked Rock Salt).  DSC05044


Continue chopping and squishing until it starts to form a paste.


Put the egg yolk and garlic paste in a small mixing bowl and whisk together. An electric hand mixer is ideal if you have one. Shannon also has a Tupperware® chopper/mixer that works quite well.


While whisking, add the oil very slowly, a few drips at a time to start. Too much oil at the beginning will result in the aioli not thickening. The whisking process should take at least ten minutes, up to 20.


Continue drizzling the oil into the bowl while whisking. You can add up to a teaspoon at a time once you are about half way through your oil and the sauce is beginning to thicken. Once the oil is used up, add a few drops of lemon juice and whisk it into the mix.

The end result should have a consistency like soft butter, or a little thicker than mayo.


There you have it, Kootenay Spice’s garlic aioli, a.k.a. ‘awesome garlic sauce’. Enjoy!

sage oregano

spring gardening

It has been a very warm spring in the West Kootenay this year and we are thrilled for the extension of our Kootenay Spice gardening season! In the past week we’ve transplanted many of the plants we started indoors and have sowed seeds into most of our gardens.

Our lilacs are in full bloom.

dark purple lilacs

Our garlic should be ready to harvest in early-mid July.


We’ve planted potatoes in burlap bags. Roll the sides down at first and make the bag taller as the potatoes need mounding.


We’ve planted dozens of basil plants this year. We also have very healthy oregano and sage plants that are already well established.

basil 1

sage oregano

Our tomato plants are doing well and our pepper plants seem very healthy. The pepper seedlings require the most work, they don’t seem to like temperatures below 20˚C, so we are still bringing them in for the nighttime.


pepper seedlings

Scattered through our Kootenay Spice gardens are ‘guest rocks’ from our wedding last summer. Instead of a traditional guest book that would get tucked away, we opted for guests to sign rocks that we can enjoy every day in our gardens. And you know what? This rock is absolutely right, life sure is good together!

life is good rock

Happy gardening!

Kootenay Spice Table

silver city days market in trail

This past weekend was the 50th anniversary of Silver City Days in Trail. Silver City Days is an annual five day festival with a midway, food vendors and entertainment. Some things we have enjoyed over the years include parades, live music, BBQ and bartending competitions, car shows, 3 on 3 street basketball tournaments, fireworks and so much more!

Gyro Park Beach

The Sunday of Silver City Days is traditionally a Family Day Festival at beautiful Gyro Park, which includes an outdoor vendor’s market.

Silver City Days Market

Of course, Kootenay Spice had a booth set up this year and officially kicked off our 2013 market season! We sold out of our Lemon Garlic Pepper supply in our first hour there!


It was a wonderful turnout and we had a great time watching the Trail Maple Leaf Band, followed by ABRA Cadabra, an ABBA tribute band that was very entertaining! They did some classic ABBA and a few other hits from the 70s, including the YMCA (which got the whole crowd moving, here they are in the ‘Y’ stage)!


Watch for us at the Trail Market on the Esplanade beginning June 7 & running every other Friday until October 11.

watermelon salad

watermelon salad

Summer has definitely arrived in the West Kootenay! One of our favourite summer salads at Kootenay Spice is watermelon salad. We made this delicious side for the guests at our wedding last July and have since had a number of requests for the recipe.

It is such a refreshing and flavourful salad and is always a hit at picnics and BBQs. If you like watery fruits and veggies like watermelon, cucumber and tomatoes, you will love this salad!

watermelon salad ingredients

You will need:

½ large watermelon (or 1 small one)
1 fresh cucumber
1 cup of fresh, cherry tomatoes
1 red pepper
1 small red onion
¼ cup Kootenay Spice Rosemary Balsamic Drizzle
½ cup feta cheese
1 – 2 tablespoons fresh basil, finely chopped
1 – 2 tablespoons fresh mint, finely chopped

First you will want to cut up the watermelon into ½ to 1” chunks. You can also use a melon baller, but chopping it into chunks works just fine too. Once it is chopped up, set it in a colander over some paper towel to let some of the water drip out.

watermelon salad chopped ingredients

Slice the cucumber in half lengthwise and with a small spoon, scrape the seeds out of the middle. Cut the cucumber into ½” pieces and place them into a large, non-metallic bowl.

Slice the cherry tomatoes in half (so that they can absorb more of the balsamic vinegar) and add them to the cucumber pieces. Chop the red pepper into 1/2” pieces and the red onion into thin strips and add them to the mix too.

Pour the Rosemary Balsamic Drizzle over the fruit & veggie mix and refrigerate for at least an hour. About 15 minutes before serving, stir in the feta, basil and mint.

watermelon salad

There you have it, our most favourite and most popular summer salad! Enjoy!

cooked cedar plank rainbow

fresh cedar plank rainbow

Dan went fishing on Sunday with a friend who has lived in the area all his life & knows exactly when & where the fish bite. Sure enough, Dan came home with two rainbow trout that we promptly cooked for dinner!


We soaked a couple of cedar planks in water for about an hour and heated them up in our kamado smoker for a couple of minutes.

BBQ Sauced rainbow

We then lay the fish fillets across the planks and sprinkled them with some Kootenay Spice Lemon Garlic Pepper and some fresh dill.

Smoking rainbow

A few minutes smoked at high heat, followed by a layer of BBQ sauce and a few more minutes on the grill (12 minutes of cooking all together), we were enjoying some delicious, fresh rainbow trout.

cooked cedar plank rainbow

Just one more reason we love living in the West Kootenay!

finished pizza stuffed chicken breast

pizza stuffed chicken breasts

finished pizza stuffed chicken breast

Today we are sharing with you our recipe for pizza stuffed chicken breast. Yes you read that right, pizza stuffed chicken breast! A delicious and different way to prepare your chicken.

You will need:

6 chicken breasts (skinless, boneless)
1 red pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 cup mozzarella cheese, cut into thin strips
1 prepared Kootenay Spice salami or 1 package sliced pizza meat
1 can tomato paste
Kootenay Spice Italian Seasoning
½ cup bread crumbs or crushed crackers

pizza stuffed chicken filling

You can also add things like pineapple or olives, but the more stuffing you have, the harder it is to roll and keep everything together.

First of all, you need to pound out the chicken breasts. The easiest way to do this is put the breast between two pieces of saran wrap and pound it out with a blunt, heavy object. We use a rolling pin, but a heavy pan will work too.

pounding chicken

Be careful not to pound the chicken too thin or it will fall apart when you roll everything together.

Preheat your oven to 400˚F.

sauced chicken breast

Once all of the chicken is pounded thin, we can start rolling them up. Spread a thin layer of tomato paste over one of the chicken breasts and sprinkle it with Kootenay Spice Italian Seasoning.

filling chicken roll

Place the cheese, pepper and Salami or pizza meat on the breast. Salami made from Kootenay Spice Salami Cure is ideal for this recipe, however we were fresh out and ended up with store-bought pizza meat instead. Roll the breast so that everything is on the inside of the roll and close with a few toothpicks. If you have lots of stuffing, it is easier to fold the breast in thirds instead of rolling it. Set the rolls aside on a cutting board or cookie sheet, not into your baking dish yet.

Once all of your rolls are done, drizzle on a bit of olive oil and coat in breadcrumbs. We generally coat one side, flip the rolls over and coat the second side. Do not do this step in the same pan you are using to bake the rolls, as the bread crumbs will burn and stick to your pan and be a royal pain for clean up later.

pre cooked pizza stuffed chicken rolls

Once they are breaded you can put the chicken rolls into a large baking pan. Cook for about 30 minutes, until the cheese is melting and the rolls have reached an internal temperature of 165˚F. Let cool and set for a few minutes before serving.

finished pizza stuffed chicken breast

And there you have it, delicious pizza stuffed chicken breasts! Enjoy!