Fire up the grill for the Grey Cup

A survey found 10% of Canadians plan to grill for the Grey Cup. Try Veal Banh Mi for the big game....

A survey found 10% of Canadians plan to grill for the Grey Cup. Try Veal Banh Mi for the big game. (Photo courtesy of ontariovealappeal.ca)

Rita DeMontis, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:53 PM ET

It's the invitation to the nation — the 100th Grey Cup celebrations are coming our way.

Taking place Nov. 25 at the Rogers Centre in Toronto, this emblem for Canadian professional football is going to be celebrated coast to coast with one of the hottest events in pigskin history. For this illustrious occasion, it doesn't matter where you are in Canada, you're invited to party — and that's one thing die-hard Canadian football fans know how to do.

On a food level, research shows cold or inclement weather won't deter Canadians from game day grilling or tailgating.

A recent grilling survey confirms we will fire up the grill for a host of special events—and endure heat, rain and snow—for flavour, fun and family.

The 24th annual Weber Canadian GrillWatch Survey, conducted by Toronto-based Leger Marketing and published by Weber-Stephen Products LLC, showed almost 40% of survey respondents say they grill year-round, braving even extreme weather events to do so. (It's a given cold weather and Grey Cup go hand in hand!)

One-third of grilling enthusiasts will grill in temperatures below 0C, while another third (35%) don’t mind tending the grill when the temperatures hover between 0C and 10C — 34% have barbecued when it’s been snowing.

The GrillWatch Survey also found that Canadians view outdoor cooking as a time for family and friends and to celebrate special events — like the Grey Cup. For the first time, the survey notes 10% of respondents grill on game day.

Research also found more men than women selected this sporting event as being an important barbecue time, and Western Canada has the most game day grillers (17%).

Watching the game indoors or out, with family and friends, this historical Grey Cup promises to be the sports event of the century — slap that one your grill and enjoy! (Check out 100thgreycupfestival.ca for upcoming Grey Cup events.)

Talking Tailgating:

In addition to the food and the grill, tailgaters listed the following “must-haves”: Cooler (70%), alcoholic beverages (63%) and chairs (61%). One-quarter of respondents also need to include a TV set, while 14% feel they should provide games for the family.

The three most popular grilled tailgating food items are hamburgers (76%), hot dogs (55%) and brats or sausages (33%).

- Source: The 24th annual Weber Canadian GrillWatch Survey

RECIPE 1: Veal Banh Mi

Recipe courtesy Ontariovealappeal.ca

Ingredients:

  • 4 pieces veal scaloppini
  • 2 Tbsp. (30ml) sweet chili sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) soy sauce
  • 1 green onion, minced
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) boiling water
  • 1/4 cup (50 ml) rice wine vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp. (45 ml) sugar
  • 1 tsp. (5 ml) salt
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • 1 cup (250 ml) julienned daikon
  • 4 crusty rolls, halved lengthwise
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) mayonnaise
  • 12 sprigs cilantro

Directions:

In a resealable bag or shallow dish combine veal with sweet chili sauce, soy and green onion until evenly coated. Let sit for at least one hour, or refrigerated for up to one day, turning occasionally. In bowl, whisk together water, rice vinegar, sugar and salt until well blended and sugar has dissolved. Let cool. Add carrot and daikon. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour and up to 7 days.

Grill veal on greased grill over medium high heat for 3 minutes; turn and grill until opaque and just of hint of pink inside, about 2 minutes (will depend on thickness of veal) Let rest for 5 minutes. Grill buns. Spread mayonnaise over buns. Slice veal to fit on buns. Top with drained, pickled carrot/daikon and top with cilantro.

Makes 4 sandwiches.

RECIPE 2: Steak and Brie Quesadilla

Serve up these quesadillas for dinner or as a fun appetizer to watch the game. Recipe courtesy of Ontario Goat Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 1 boneless veal or beef steak or chop, about 1/2 lb/250 g
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) wine vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp (2 ml) salt
  • Pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Spanish onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/2 tsp (2 ml) granulated sugar
  • 4 small flour tortillas

Directions:

Half a 180 g wheel of triple cream goat brie, sliced

In a shallow dish, whisk together 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) of oil, vinegar, garlic, rosemary, half of the salt and pepper. Add steak and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours. Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and cook onions, stirring occasionally until starting to brown. Add parsley, sugar and remaining salt; reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring for about 10 minutes or until golden brown and soft. Set aside.

Place steak on greased grill over medium-high heat and grill for about 6 minutes, turning once or until desired doneness. Place on cutting board and let rest for 2 minutes. Thinly slice steak.

Divide onions among half of each of the tortillas. Top with steak and brie and fold tortillas over to close. Place quesadillas on greased grill over medium heat and grill for about 2 minutes, turning once or until golden and crisp.

Makes 4 servings.

Tip: You can substitute regular Goat Brie for the Triple Cream Goat Brie.


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