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Recipes with Julie Van Rosendaal: Recreating dishes from Ten Foot Henry

Recipes with Julie Van Rosendaal: Recreating dishes from Ten Foot Henry

We’ve been dedicating our summer segments on the Calgary Eyeopener to recreating iconic dishes from well-loved restaurants around the city, and this week brought us to Ten Foot Henry.

Ten Foot Henry has been an exceptionally popular “vegetable-anchored” eatery since it opened in 2016, and of all the requests for restaurant dishes I’ve received, TFH has the most individual dishes on the list.

The restaurant is named after a literal 10 foot cutout of the 1930s comic book character, Henry, which has been a Calgary icon since the ’80s.

“This cartoon boy became larger than life as a muse for Calgary’s creative community in the 1980s,” the Ten Foot Henry website states.

The cutout has travelled many places in its 40 years, including an underground night club named Ten Foot Henry’s in the early 1980s and the Night Gallery on 1st Street S.W. It resided there for all 19 years the entertainment venue was open, according to the website.

“Operating partners Stephen Smee and Aja Lapointe have borrowed the original Ten Foot Henry from the One Yellow Rabbit Theatre and have returned him to his longest running address on 1st Street, where his food-filled adventure continues.”

Whole Roasted Cauliflower

Ten Foot Henry has always had roasted cauliflower on the menu. It changes often, and every version I’ve tried has been amazing.

This recipe was published in a story I wrote for Swerve back in 2017 — it’s typical of their cauliflower dishes, which are always creative.

I like to do something similar at home, topping my whole roasted cauliflower with garlicky sauce, handfuls of fresh herbs and crunchy nuts, seeds or toasted crumbs.

Ingredients

Salsa verde:

  • 1 bunch cilantro, washed
  • 1 bunch parsley, washed
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ cup olive oil

Lemon yogurt:

  • 300g Greek yogurt
  • Juice of 4 lemons
  • 2 tsp salt
  • Pinch pepper

Pepita:

  • 50g pepitas (green pumpkin seeds)

Clean and core the cauliflower.

Blanch in boiling water for three minutes, then roast at 350 F uncovered for 35 minutes, or until it’s golden and just tender if you poke it with a knife.

To make the salsa verde, blend the first four ingredients together until it’s a pasty consistency. Whisk in the oil.

Whisk together all the ingredients for the lemon yogurt.

To toast the pepitas, toss in olive oil and salt. Roast at 350 F for 10 minutes or until toasted.

To serve, top the roasted cauliflower with salsa verde, lemon yogurt and pepitas.

Serves: 6-8.

Whipped Feta with Melted Tomatoes

Ten Foot Henry has a popular appetizer of whipped feta with tomatoes and dill. There are many ways to make this, and though you could roast your tomatoes in the oven or even pop them on the grill, I find it easiest to blister and melt them in a skillet on the stovetop.

If you’re an olive fan, adding a few olives to the pan along with the tomatoes is delicious, too.

This whipped feta with melted tomatoes and dill can serve as many as you like by scaling the ingredients up or down. (Julie Van Rosendaal)

Ingredients

  • Olive or vegetable oil
  • Cherry or grape tomatoes
  • Butter (optional)
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Feta (Macedonian-style is creamier)
  • Cream, milk or sour cream
  • Fresh dill or basil
  • Crusty bread or pitas, for serving

Pour a generous drizzle of oil into a skillet large enough to accommodate the tomatoes you want to cook, and set it over medium-high heat. Add a dab of butter too if you like.

Put the tomatoes into the pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook until they start to blister and soften. Cook until they break down a bit (or a lot), then remove from the heat.

Put as much feta as you’d like to whip into the bowl of a food processor, add a splash of cream or milk (or even lemon juice, or the brine from your feta) and pulse until creamy and smooth, adding more liquid if you need it to achieve a creamy, spreadable texture.

Spoon into a shallow dish and put the tomatoes on top or along one side, pouring any juices from the pan overtop.

Garnish with fresh dill or basil and serve with crusty bread or pitas.

Serves: As many as you like.

Butterscotch Pudding

Ten Foot Henry serves an amazing butterscotch pudding in small, lidded jars, which are perfect if you’re picking it up at the coffee shop out front and taking it to go.

This isn’t the actual recipe they use (I don’t think — I didn’t ask!) but it’s a pretty common way to make it.

For the sweet tooth, Van Rosendaal provides her take on Ten Foot Henry’s butterscotch pudding. (Julie Van Rosendaal)

Ingredients

  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp butter (divided)
  • A big pinch of salt
  • 1 cup whipping cream (or coconut milk)
  • 1 cup milk (or coconut milk)
  • 2 large egg yolks (optional)
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Whipped cream, for serving (optional)

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the brown sugar, 1 tbsp butter, salt and ¼ cup water.

Cook for several minutes until the sugar turns a shade or two darker.

In another bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the cream, milk, egg yolks (if using) and cornstarch. Add to the sugar mixture and bring to a boil, stirring until it bubbles and thickens.

Remove from the heat and whisk in the vanilla and the remaining tablespoon of butter. (If you find it gets lumpy, pour through a sieve while it’s still hot).

Pour into small bowls, ramekins or 125ml ring-lidded jars and refrigerate until set.

Top with sweetened whipped cream, if you like.

Serves: 6.