Hyphen in Gatineau

I have been busy planning the production of my newest film project: Hyphen, a documentary about cultural identity within multiracial families in Canada. Yesterday was a pretty important day: it was my very first shooting day!

My goal for this documentary is to create a collection of short stories featuring multiracial individuals; one of those individuals is me. I thought it was necessary for me to go through the interviewing and filming process before I could start including other stories. My close and talented friend Travis Boisvenue has kindly accepted to film my section of the documentary, as I didn’t think using a selfie stick would have quite the same impact. So I brought him to my hometown of Gatineau for the day. We visited my childhood home where my mother still lives, and we cooked a delicious curry together.

Then we ventured around my neighbourhood, visiting my elementary school and local hang out spots.

We also drove through downtown Gatineau and ended up at my high school in Hull.

We ended the day in my current apartment in Chinatown, to have coffee with my roommate.

It was definitely a strange day. I was thrilled to finally see my project become a reality, but being in front of the camera all day was something I wasn’t so comfortable with. It really made me realize how vulnerable you are in these situations, and I hope to make my subjects feel at ease, like Travis was able to do for my mother and I.

 It was also a strange feeling to visit places I hadn’t seen in years, bringing back the good and bad memories from those times in my life. But that’s exactly what I’m looking for from this project. So I’m keeping the momentum of yesterday and planning to start my interview. I am only recording the audio from the interviews, to have more space to be creative with the visuals. I’m looking forward to what will come from my first interview: a conversation between my mother and I.

I plan to keep updating you all on the process I take for this documentary, as I want this project to be open and flexible. Feel free to give me any feedback or thoughts you may have, I’d love to hear your ideas!

Not Xena has a new Home

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That’s right, I’ve moved. But don’t worry, it’s not too far. I decided to migrate the blog so it lives right within my main online portfolio: warriorrenaud.com.

For those who have subscribed through wordpress, you can still subscribe via warriorrenaud.com/notxena. Just go to this page and click the subscribe link in the sidebar on the right. You’ll get an email every time I add a new post, so you won’t miss any recipes, movie marathon ideas and news about my upcoming documentary “Hyphen”.

Thanks for following, I hope to see you at my brand new home!
Gaby

Friday Food Frenzy: Apple Galette With Salted Caramel

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It has been pretty cold out there, Ottawa! But do not fret, I’ve got an awesome tip to keep your thermostat down while still keeping your house warm. Turn on that oven, and let’s make a delicious no pie apple pie covered in a salted caramel sauce. Sounds pretty magical, right? But it couldn’t be easier and you don’t event need a pie dish. This tested to perfection galette recipe is a great alternative for people whose apple pies look like they left a 4-year-old in charge of the kitchen.

Here’s what we’ll need:

for the dough

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tbsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 14 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cubed (comes up to a little more than 3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 cup ice water (before starting, fill a glass with cold water and pop it in the freezer)
  • 1 egg, beaten and set aside

for the filling

  • 4 apples (I used Wolf River apples because they stay firm after baking)
  • 2 tbsp. light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp. butter, cut into small bits

for the salted caramel sauce

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3 1/2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp. sea salt

Here’s how we’ll make it:

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  • Preheat oven to 400°F
  • In a large bowl, mix flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt until combined. You can pulse in a food processor if you have one
  • Add the butter. I use a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour mix until it resembles rough sand. Again, if you have a food processor, go ahead and pulse.
    • My pastry cutter has become my new best friend. If you don’t have one, I’d suggest getting one. We found ours at HighJinx, a social enterprise located on Catherine street (that place is worth a trip regardless). You can probably snatch one at a thrift shop for a low price.
  • Add water and mix until the mixture comes together
  • Roll it in a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for about 1 hour or 15 min in the freezer.
  • While the dough is chilling, peel, core and slice the apples.
  • Place apples in a bowl, mix in sugar, cinnamon and butter until all apples are evenly coated. Set aside.

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  •  Once dough is chilled, we can roll it out. On a well-floured surface, roll out into a 1/4 inch round.
  • You can trim the edges to make the round even all around.
  • Place the filling in the middle of the round.
  • Fold the edges over the filling, leaving centre exposed.
  • Take your beaten egg and brush the crust. This will give your crust a nice golden crisp.
  • Bake for about 40 minutes until the crust is a nice golden brown.
  • While the galette is baking, let’s make the sauce!
  • In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and water over medium-low.
  • Once the sugar is dissolved, increase the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Let it boil for about 5 minutes without stirring.
  • Remove the sugar from the heat.
  • Whisk in the heavy cream gradually.
  • Stir in the butter and salt.
  • I like to keep the extra sauce in a jar for later use (it’s amazing on toast, or even drizzled on some yogurt and fruit).
  • Once the galette is ready, remove and let it cool for a while. Once it’s chilled a bit, slice, pour some caramel sauce over it and enjoy!

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What are you baking this week? Tweet me @warriorrenaud, or comment below!