Saturday, 30 August 2014

Well we are home... Pork chop casserole

We are home from camping and I dreamt about cooking a lot of the time.It was great taking the motorhome because I had 3 options for cooking. Convection oven,the BBQ (charcoal and propane as well as the camp fire).
It rained the first 24 hrs so I made my grandma's pork chop casserole.

8 chops seasoned with salt pepper
6 potatoes sliced
1 small onion
3 carrots peeled and slices
6 mushrooms sliced
2 can mushroom soup

Brown the chops place in a casserole dish
Brown the mushrooms and onions in same pan after the meat
Layer between meat and potatoes
I alternate the carrots and potatoes.
Put soup in frying pan to deglaze and pour over potatoes.
Cover and bake for 35-40 mins at 350

Another great meal you can prep ahead of time.
I have done it in the crock pot too.

Saturday, 23 August 2014

making a few things for the week ahead of time

So because we are going camping I am going to pre make some of our favorites up so that all I have to do is finish them before our meals.

POTATO SALAD  chop and boil the potatoes, boil the eggs, chopp 2 green onions
cool potatoes and eggs  unpeeled. I put everything in 1 bowl.
then when we are ready to eat I peel and chop the eggs, add salt and pepper and mayo.

PASTA SALAD  basically the same way, boil and cool the pasta put in a bowl, layer the veggies on top
cucumber,tomato,red onion (soaked and drained in 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar 1 tbsp water 1/2 tsp sugar)
celery,shredded carrot
In a separate jar  1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup favorite vinegar ( I use cider) 2 tbsp honey,salt pepper, 1/2 orange juiced, 3 leaves fresh basil chopped.
shake and pour dressing over salad 30 mins before serving    enjoy

If its cool out I am going to make up a chicken noodle soup too

1 onion chopped
2 chicken breasts chopped  fried
7 cups chicken stock
3 carrots shredded
3 ribs celery chopped
1 tsp poultry seasoning
1/2 cup shredded zucchini
pinch salt pepper
2 cups of elbow macaroni cooked  drained drizzle with oil  KEEP SEPARATE

fry the onions till clear add the chicken sprinkle on seasoning cook for 10 mins
add veggies
de-glaze pan with 1/2 cup chicken stock stir and cook 15 mins
cool add the rest of the stock put in a non leaking bowl

you can heat it as you need it and add the noodles.  great way to warm you up and fill your belly.
my kids love it.

Bannock Dogs

1 cup flour
a pinch salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp butter
12 cup milk

hot dogs

combine the flour,salt,baking powder in a bowl add the butter and salt  mix together.
add the milk slowly as you mix.
stir until a stiff dough forms
with floured hands knead dough for 1 minute.

separate dough into 4-6 pieces depending on hot dog size.
dry off hot dog with paper towel and wrap dough around the hot dog. spear the hot dog with a fire fork and roast.

so good for a camp fire night.

Hobo pies

camp fire sandwich roasters.

bread  we use sandwich loaf because the slices are square.
filling:  some of our favorites are
pizza sauce shredded cheese and pepperoni
chocolate chips/peanut butter
spreadable cream cheese/pie filling

butter the outside of the bread
place in roaster 1 slice per side.
add filling
clamp together
toast over the fire.

so much fun for the kids to make their own lunch or supper.

A few great recipes for taking to the cabin or camping


1 can black beans  drain and rinse
2 cobs steamed fresh corn on the cob. Remove from cob  or 1 can drained
1 medium tomato chopped
1/2  small red onion chopped small
1 red pepper seeded chopped
1 avocado peeled chopped
1/4 cup feta cheese  crumbled
1 carrot grated


1/2 clove roasted garlic
1 jalapeno minced  seeded
1 lime juiced
4 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp corriander
2 tbsp fresh cilantro chopped

combine all ingredients and pour dressing over. chill and enjoy

Zucchini Bread                      325 degrees  45 mins

3 eggs
1 cup oil
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
2 1/2 cup shredded zucchini
2 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup combined pecans/chocolate chip

combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly  pour into 2 greased loaf pans

Friday, 22 August 2014

Off camping for a week

I will continue my blog in a week, my family and I are off camping for a week and I am looking forward to being UNPLUGGED for 7 days.

Until we cook together again...............

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

cheddar broccoli spread or dip

1 cup cooked broccoli florets steamed
1 can white beans  I use cannelini beans  drained and rinsed
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 clove garlic minced  I use roasted garlic
3 tbsp olive oil
juice and zest 1/2 lemon
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

put everything  except cheese in a food processor and blend.
Put in a bowl and mix in cheese.
use as a spread on grilled pita chips or for a great dip for veggies.

My kids take it to school with veggies and crackers

Pear relish great to serve with pork

2 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion minced
1 tbsp fresh ginger minced
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves
3 pears peeled cored roughly chopped
1/4 cup dried cranberries or raisins
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tbsp brown sugar

in a small skillet heat oil, add onions,ginger,cinnamon,cloves stir cook 5-7 mins just till onions start to turn a light brown
add pears, brown sugar,cider vinegar mix well  cook for 15 mins
until pears have softened.

enjoy over pork chops.

a great pork seasoning mix, to rub onto pork chops before you grill them

2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp corriander
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper


chicken.broccoli,penne bake

so good........

9x13 pan    350 degree oven      bake 25 mins

3 cups broccoli florets     steamed but still with a crunch
2 cups cubed chicken  I use thighs and breasts  cooked
1 can cream of cheddar broccoli soup
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
3 cups cooked penne pasta
1/2 clove garlic
1 shallot minced

I fry my boneless skinless chicken with 1 tbsp butter,1/2 clove garlic,1 shallot minced set aside
steam broccoli for 3 mins  drain set aside
cook pasta leave slightly under cooked so it doesn't go mushy in the oven. drain

in a bowl mix milk,soup and cheddar cheese together
put chicken,pasta,broccoli in casserole dish and mix together  pinch salt and pepper
pour soup/cheese mixture over top
bake for 25 mins
15 min covered and 10 mins uncovered


Monday, 18 August 2014

Perfect butter cream picture

perfect butter cream icing

My daughter Madisen has really got a love for baking and icing cakes so this afternoon we were

making butter cream frosting.

This is the one that stayed the most stiff and piped the best.

1 cup shortening
4 cups icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla
4 tbsp milk
1 tbsp cream of tarter

we used wilton's icing colour, It doesn't make the icing runny

i will post some pictures later tonight

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Lots of zucchini from the garden

So today I went to check on the garden and I found 6 medium sized zucchini so my next question to myself was what to do with them......

3 grated zucchini
2 grated carrots
2 celery ribs chopped
3 potatoes chopped small
1 clove garlic
1 leek
1 tbsp fresh minced ginger
1 tbsp fresh lemongrass chopped
2 tbsp yellow curry powder
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 tsp turmeric
1 can coconut milk
2 cup veg stock
1 tbsp coconut oil

I grated the zucchini and sprinkled in the curry powder,cayenne,tumeric,garlic
Let sit while I chopped my potatoes, leeks,carrots.
Added leeks to a hot soup pot with the lemongrass let cook 3 mins 1 tbsp coconut oil.
Added all my veggies and let cook for about 15 mins
Brought to a boil and added coconut milk and veg stock.
Let simmer.

A vegetarian curry soup.


making my list and checking it twice

With canning season just around the corner I am making my list of what we ate the most of last year and what we didn't care for.

So far I know I need to make 4 batches of mama Spurway's canned salsa, canned tomatillo salsa,
mustard pickles, dill pickles,sweet pickle mix, maybe some canned roasted red peppers, pickled jalapenos, canned tomato sauce.
if I can get enough raspberries and strawberries with out the kids eating them all I will do some jam as well.

Lots of things to do but with the garden slow ripening because summer didn't come until mid July it looks like I will be working like crazy for a short time to complete it all.

I will add some more great canning recipes in a day or two.

Until we cook again.............

Borscht soup with or without meat

With it almost time to harvest the garden I thought of a fall favorite soup.
There are so many variations of this soup. vegetarian leave out the sausage add 1/4 cup more beet,carrot.

1 tbsp oil
6 spicy sausage links. remove from casing crumble up
3 medium beets peeled,shredded
3 carrots peeled shredded
3 potatoes peeled cubed
1 cup onion minced
1 can tomato paste
3/4 cup water
1/4 head cabbage shredded
1 large can diced tomato or 1 quart homemade stew tomato
2 cloves garlic minced
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp vinegar
4 cups water
sour cream,parsley for garnish

In a large skillet put oil and crumble sausage cook until no longer pink. remove from pan
add onions,garlic cook until onions are clear add tomato paste and 3/4 cup water stir well

In a large soup pot add 4 cup water salt and bring to a boil add 1 tbsp vinegar and sugar
add beets cook 10 mins
add carrots cook 5 mins
add cabbage cook 5 mins
add potatoes, onion mixture,sausage,diced tomatoes
let simmer until potatoes and cabbage is tender.
salt and pepper to taste
garnish with sour cream

I like to add baby spinach,beet greens to my soup. about a cup of each.
you can replace the sausage with pork spare ribs

Beef barley soup a family favorite

1 tbsp oil
1 lb cubed beef  (stew beef,steak)
1 cup chopped onion
3 carrots peeled and chopped
3 celery stalks chopped
2 cloves garlic  I use roasted if I have it
2 sprigs thyme or 2 tsp dried
3 bay leaves
1 cup cubed potato small
8 cup beef broth
1 cup pot barley
1/2 cup red wine
pinch salt,pepper
in a large skillet add oil,onion,garlic  cook 5 mins
add beef cubes brown

add beef,onion garlic, veggies, thyme,bay leaves,barley to crock pot
de glaze skillet with red wine bring to a boil add beef stock stir well
add hot stock to crock pot, salt,pepper and stir well

cook on low for 6-8 hours while you are at work
or on high for 4 hours.
you can prep the day before and store in the fridge and turn it on before going to work.

enjoy with biscuits or fresh bread
quick,easy and good for you.

Chicken curry soup with coconut and lime

2 tbsp coconut oil
3 tbsp chopped shallots
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp lemongrass   remember use the bottom 4 inches not the hard dried outer stalks
2 tbsp peeled minced fresh ginger
2 tbsp yellow curry powder  (thai)
1  tsp hot chili paste or hot sauce
1 cup coconut milk
6 cups chicken stock
2 tsp fish sauce
2 tsp sugar
2 cup snow or snap peas string removed
2 cups sweet potato peeled cubed
6 chicken thighs boneless,skinless  sliced or cubed
1 pkg dried rice vermicelli noodles   I cook separate and add to bowl before the broth of soup

1/4 cup red onion thinly sliced
1/4 cilantro chopped
lime wedges

In a large pot on med heat add oil,lemongrass,ginger,shallots cook 5 mins
add curry powder,hot sauce, coconut milk (just the milk not the thick cream)
cook 15-20 mins
add fish sauce and sugar cook 5 mins
remove from heat put in a bowl
in the same pot put coconut oil and chicken pieces fry for 10 mins
add chicken stock bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer
add spice broth,sweet potato  cover let simmer

just before you are ready to serve bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook vermicelli noodles  ( these do not take long  3-4 mins.  toss them with a bit of butter to help prevent sticking.

I put my drained noodles in the bowl,snow peas, cilantro,red onion then I put chicken and potato broth over the top.
garnish with a lime wedge.

you can blanch your snow peas but my family likes them raw.


Friday, 15 August 2014

a great heat buster Just for adults

Cherry Vodka Granita

1 bag frozen sweet cherries
3/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 lemon zest
1/2 cup vodka

blend in the blender and store in the freezer until ready to enjoy


1 cup orange juice
1 cup cranberry juice
3 oz triple sec
1/4 cup champagne for each cup of juice

mix orange juice with 1 1/2 oz triple sec, 1/4 cup champagne. mix and freeze
mix cranberry juice,1 1/2 oz triple sec 1/4 cup champagne  mix and freeze

I then take each mixture out and blend it with 8 ice cubes made with each type of juice.
layer in a wine or margarita glass
add a few oz of champagne.
so good for brunch on the deck.

I decided to make the kids a few treats

No baking today because its a scorcher outside.

Every kid loves rice krispie squares so I thought I would change them up.

1 bag mini marshmallows
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup peanut butter
4 cups rice krispies
4 cups chocolate rice krispies walmart has their own version
1 small bag of m&m minis

melt butter,p.butter, add marshmallows melt  in a large pot
add krispies and stir
stir in m&ms
press into a 9x13 pan

or stir in a 1 cup of your favorite trail mix or 1/2 cup dried fruit

homemade granola bars

super easy, so good, replace the peanut butter with a pea butter to make them school safe if there are nut allergies.

1/2 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup honey
3 tbsp coconut oil  or butter
1 cup oats
1 cup mixture dried fruit,nuts,seeds  make sure they are unsalted

my families favorite is sunflower seeds,dried cherries,chocolate chips

in a sauce pan heat up and melt peanut butter,honey,oil

remove from heat and pour over oats
mix well, when cool stir in chocolate chip mixture.
its important to make sure the oat mix is cool or the chocolate chips will melt.

press into a 8x8 pan and chill for 2 hours before slicing into bars.
another quick pan is press them into greased muffin tins.


Making Ginger beef for tomorrow

I have 4 top sirloin marinating steaks in the freezer so I decided that I would marinate them today for supper tomorrow.

Ginger Beef and Broccoli is a family favorite but I am going to put a twist on it because its been so hot this week.

4 steaks in a large ziplock bag

in a bowl combine:

2 tsp coconut oil
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 shallot minced
1/4 cup soy sauce  I use low sodium
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp of fresh red chili
1 tsp chopped cilantro

mix together well and pour into ziplock bag.

I will leave this in the fridge until 2 hours before I cook supper tomorrow. leave steaks in the bag at room temp until you are ready to grill them.

I am going to serve them sliced with a couscous/quinoa salad
In the salad I am going to put snap peas,broccoli,grape tomatoes,red onion, cucumber.
drizzled with a lime,oil,chili dressing.  I have a few quinoa/couscous salads already posted.

Baked beans another great dish for the crock pot

1 tsp oil
1 small onion chopped
1/2 cup molasses
1 can tomato paste
2 tbsp dijon mustard
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 cups navy beans    soak over night in cold water
3 cups chicken or veggie stock
2 slices bacon chopped into small pieces  OPTIONAL

add all ingredients to your crock pot except beans. Mix well
Add soaked,drained beans to the liquid in the crock pot
cook on high 4 hrs  or low 6-7 hrs.
If mixture is getting to thick during cooking and beans are not tender add more stock 1/2 cup at a time.

I make a big batch and freeze it in smaller meal portions.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

guacamole Madisen's favorite dip

2 ripe avocados  peeled and pitted
2 tbsp lime juice  fresh
1 tsp chopped jalapeno
1 tsp salt
1 tomato diced small
2 tbsp cilantro minced

mash avocado
add salt, jalapenos,lime juice,mix well
add cilantro, tomatoes, stir

serve with grilled pita chips or fresh veggies

Drunken cherry cheesecake cupcakes

1 1/2 bricks of cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla

I bought chocolate chip cookies but they were to big for the foil cupcake wrappers so I ground them up and add 2 tbsp melted butter and made a crust in the bottom of each foil wrapper.
Bake for 5-7 mins.

Cream the cream cheese,
Add the sugar cream together
Add eggs and vanilla
Cream together

Pour batter into each foil wrapper 3/4 full
Bake at 325 for 15-18 mins.

Drunken cherry sauce
A can of cherry pie filling
1 1/2 oz Drambuie
1/2 tsp gelatin
2 tbsp sugar.

Place filling in a sauce pan on med low heat
Add Drambuie, sugar, bring to a slow boil
Put gelatin in a small boil with 2 tbsp of cold water.
Remove cherries from heat and stir in gelatin.

Spoon filling onto cooked cheesecake cupcakes and refrigerate for 8-12 hours.
You can top with whipped cream just before serving.

A nice birthday dessert.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Lemon ginger chicken thighs and breasts

Another family favorite
I always use bone in meat, take the skin off


1 lemon juiced
1 zest lemon
1 tbsp fresh ginger chopped
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp honey
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp olive oil

mix all the ingredients together and pour over chicken. let marinade for 60 mins

4 thighs,4 chicken breasts in a large ziploc bag

You can bake the chicken in the oven or cook it on the bbq
I also make a sauce to go over the top when bbqing to bast the chicken

1/2 juice lemon
1 tsp ginger
1 tbsp honey
2 tbsp olive oil
 mix well and baste chicken as it is cooking.

when you need something a little different...................

Veggie Burgers made with chick peas

3 1/2 cups chick peas  drain and rinsed
1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
2 eggs
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp fresh garlic
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 cup panko bread crumbs

In your food processor add all of your ingredients except panko bread crumbs and chop until chick peas are broken down.

place mixture into a boil and stir in bread crumbs

form burgers and fry in 2 tbsp of olive oil or grapeseed oil

fry 2-3 minutes each side

enjoy on top of a fresh garden salad or on a bun with fresh tomato,lettuce and a spicy salsa.

peanut butter cookies

Supper easy and delicious

325 degree oven    10-12 minutes

2 cups peanut butter
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 flour
1 egg

cream sugar and egg together
add peanut butter cream together
add flour

form into balls and press down with a fork


Last night's supper

well it was very warm in Manitoba last night so i decided to use the deep fryer on the deck and do something a little bit different for the kids.

deep fried zucchini chips dipped in a light and fluffy batter.
onion rings dipped in the same batter
Asian sticky chicken.

I am bringing in 3 zucchinis from the garden everyday so I sliced them into disks and sprinkled them with salt and pepper.
made my batter 1/2 corn starch,1/2 cup flour pinch  of salt,pepper,cayenne 1/4 cup lemon lime soda stir well.
dip the disks in the batter and add 6-8 into the deep fryer, drain on some paper towel place in the oven to keep warm.
kids gobbled them up.
I sliced up 1 large onion and put a little milk 1/4 cup, salt,pepper on them and let them sit for 30 mins.
dipped the rings in batter and fried them up.

Chicken marinade

1 inch piece fresh ginger chopped
1 glove garlic  chopped
1/2 tsp ground chinese 5 spice
2 tbsp honey
3 tbsp fish sauce
3 tbsp light soy sauce
3 tbsp sweet chili thai sauce
juice 1/2 lime.
mix well
pour over chicken let sit in the fridge for 1 hour.
place in a bbq safe pan and bake in the bbq at 350 for 30 mins.

I used chicken thighs for last nights dinner.

there were NO leftovers, kids really liked the chips and rings. I know deep frying isn't healthy but it sure was a nice treat.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

The easiest Tomato soup ever

6 ripe large tomatoes  or 2 large cans of tomatoes
1 onion copped sauteed in a tbsp of butter until soft and clear
1 tsp pepper
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp sugar or honey
2 tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup cream
1/2 tsp cayenne optional

place all ingredients in a blender and blend for 1-2 minutes until smooth
put in a pot on medium heat and heat through
add cream and stir  do not bring to a boil.
allow to heat through on medium low heat

Quinoa salad

1 cup quinoa
1 1/2 cup water
1/2 clove roasted garlic chopped  mix with olive oil and lemon juice
1/2 cup red pepper chopped
1/2 cup grape tomatoes sliced in half
1/4 cup red onion finely chopped
1/4 cup raw mushrooms chopped
1/4 cup cucumber diced
1/4 cup sweet and spicy pine nuts
salt pepper
1 juice from a lemon
2 tbsp olive oil

soak quinoa for 15-20 mins  drain
add quinoa and water and bring to a boil, cover and let simmer about 15 until almost all the water has been absorbed
let sit with lid on for 5 mins after you remove from heat
fluff and place in a bowl,add oil and lemon juice, garlic mixture
allow to cool
add veggies
stir together
sprinkle with pine nuts before serving
add fresh herbs if you like

French Onion soup

one of my favorite soups, It one of those soups that is so good on a cold day.

4 sweet vadalias onions chopped finely
1/4 cup butter
2 cups good red wine
3 cup low sodium beef stock
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
a spice bundle of fresh thyme,parsley,bay leaf

a loaf of extra crusty bread
1 cup Gruyere cheese

in a large soup pot heat up butter and add onions,salt,pepper allow onions to cook down for 20 mins. stir and cook until onions are a warm Carmel colour
add red wine, spice bundle allow to cook for 15 minutes stirring occasionally
add apple cider vinegar and beef stock
let simmer for 2 hours  or transfer to a crock pot and put on low.

serve with a slice of bread on top layer with cheese and broil until cheese has melted.

When you visit my blog..........

Thanks so much for checking out my recipes and following me on my journey as I auditioned for "Masterchef Canada"
I invite you to add yourself to my following list when you visit.I have been amazed at how quickly I reached 500, then 1000 and now 1500 views,
please feel free to leave comments or questions on the recipes as you try them.

until we cook together again...........

Monday, 11 August 2014

Pineapple chicken with brocolli

5 boneless skinless chicken breast into chunks or thin strips
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup of fresh pineapple plus 1/2 cup juice
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp honey
2 tsp fresh ginger
2 tsp garlic minced
2 heads broccoli chopped into bite size
1 red pepper chopped
salt pepper
1 tbsp cornstarch

large skillet
heat oil add chicken
cook until chicken browns about 6-8 mins
in a bowl
add pineapple,juice,soy sauce,honey ginger,garlic whisk
add to chicken
add peppers
bring to a boil add cornstarch ( mix with 1 tbsp water)
cook 5 minutes
add broccoli
cook another 5-7 minutes

serve over rice or rice noodles.

Well it just arrived!

I am not going to be the next MasterChef Canada this year but I did make top 5 for the prairies and invited to try again next year.
I am going to continue blogging and writing my "busy mom's cookbook". Thank you to all who follow my blog and believe in me.
Big hugs until we cook together again.

Chicken Burgers

A great alternative to the traditional burger.

2 lb ground chicken or turkey
3 tbsp onion finely chopped
2 tbsp terriyaki sauce
1/4 tsp 5 spice
1/2 tsp roasted garlic
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs

I mix meat,spices,onion and terriyaki together if too wet add a good sprinkle of panko or bread crumbs
make a patty and coat in panko bread crumbs
grill or fry in frying pan.
If grilling I use my burger basket so they don't fall apart

put on a bun with lettuce,tomato,mayo


White chicken chilli crock pot meal

This is another great crock pot meal..

olive oil
1 cup celery chopped
1 cup onion chopped
1 cup red pepper chopped
1 cup green pepper chopped
1 can diced tomatoes  large can
3 cup chicken stock
1 can 6 bean medley
2 lbs ground chicken  fry lightly before adding I add half of my spices to the meat as I fry it.
2 tsp chili powder
1 clove garlic
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp coriander
2 tsp chopped cilantro
2 tsp lime juice

add  all your ingredients to the crock pot stir well

cook on low for 5-6 hours
cook on high 2-3 hours.

serve with sour cream, grated cheese and pico de gallo

Baked mac and cheese

So when I know we are having some picky kids for the day I will make this mac & cheese.
I don't have a ton of time everyday if we have daycare,sports,dance etc but this dish fills the kids bellies and keeps them happy. I serve it with a side salad or veggies & dip.

bake at 350 for 15 minutes covered  5 minutes uncovered

1 lb bag of elbow macaroni I use 1/2 w.heat and 1/2 white
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups of shredded cheese
1/4 tsp of cayenne
1 cup of milk
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs  I use the seasoned version from president's choice
1/4 cup of cooked bacon
3 tbsp parmesan cheese
pinch salt and pepper
cook macaroni but don't over cook. leave abit of a bite to it.drain  set aside

in a sauce pan put in butter and melt
add flour,cayenne,salt,pepper  stir together and let your flour cook a minute or two.
add a 1/4 of your milk and stir
add 1/2 cheese and mix, alternating milk and cheese until you have a creamy cheese sauce.
put 1/2 macaroni in a greased 9x13 pan
add 1/2  cheese sauce  mix
add remainder of macaroni
add cheese sauce  mix
sprinkle panko and bacon,parmesan over the top

Well, I haven't received my email yet........ A few more great recipes

This is the week that I should receive my email to say "welcome to Masterchef" but I have this sinking feeling that my adventure has ended this year.
I am proud of myself for trying and making it as far as I did but there is apart of me that still has a little bit of hope.
I made a great dish,I am a great cook, I think I did well on my 3 interviews.......................
So as I hope and pray that I made it here are a few more recipes:

Pineapple watermelon salsa
2 cups finely diced pineapple
2 cups finely diced watermelon
1/2 red onion finely chopped
1/2 lime juiced
1/2 lime zested
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
option: 1/2 jalapeno finely chopped

mix all together and refrigerate for an hour before serving
great on pork,fish or as an appetiser

Pico de gallo

2 tomatoes finely chopped
1/2 serrano pepper finely chopped seeded
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1/4 cilantro finely chopped
2 tbsp lime juice
mix together

Tomatillo Salsa
I have a tomatillo plant that has gone crazy so this is one thing to do with them. I am also going to do a spicy canned version.
you need your food processor for this one.
2 cups cilantro
1 serrano pepper
1 clove garlic
1/2 onion red
1 tsp salt
2 cups tomatillo
combine together in food processor and chill


Sunday, 10 August 2014

Well its almost the end of summer

As summer is coming to a close and we get ready for back to school I am busy rotating stock in the pantry and freezer.
Trying to use up all the older stuff so that I can do 2 big shops and get ready for fall.
I really dislike hearing from my kids that there is "NO FOOD", there is lots of food
but it isn't jumping out at them or it isn't pre cooked and ready to eat.
I don't buy or serve a lot of processed crap in my house so I agree we are getting down to the bare bones but on purpose.

I try and have fresh muffins,cookies,squares made daily, There is always 2 kinds of fresh salsa in the fridge but as everyone knows that's not food to most teens.
I also put 2 cold pasta salads together yesterday for a quick and easy snack or part of a meal.

So I guess its time to clean out the fridge and make a Sunday soup, and then go for groceries.

Until we cook together again.................................

A great Sunday soup

1 tbsp olive oil
3 sausages  either hot Italian,mild Italian,chirizo,chicken or turkey  slice into 1/2 pieces
1 zucchini finely chopped
2 rib celery diced
2 carrots chopped
1 clove garlic
5 leaves fresh basil
2 cups diced tomatoes
2 cups spinach or 1 cup chopped frozen
1 can cannelini beans drained and rinsed
8 cups of low salt chicken stock
2 cups cooked farfelle pasta  cook separate  leave separate
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

in a large soup pot heat oil and add sausage
stirring and cooking about 5 minutes
add celery,carrot,garlic,zucchini  cook 5 minutes
add tomatoes and stir to get all the bits off the bottom of pot. That's flavour!
add chicken stock
stir and let simmer for 30-45 minutes

I put pasta in each soup bowl and ladle the hot soup over the top.
We don't like mushy pasta in our house.
Sprinkle with cheese and finely chopped basil.


Sunday morning breakfast

A great quick and easy family breakfast.

Frittata with potato,spinach,mushrooms, feta,sausage
6-8 eggs beaten
3 large potatoes
3 sausages removed from casing
5 mushrooms sliced
1 cup spinach roughly chopped
1/2 cup feta cheese  or 1/2 cup shredded cheese
1/2 medium onion chopped

put your 3 potatoes in the microwave for 8 minutes while you do the first 3 steps. helps get them cooking.
At my house as soon as breakfast meat and onions are cooking everyone is asking when breakfast is going to be ready.
In a large oven safe skillet
fry up onions, sausage and mushrooms. cook until sausage is cooked through. 
take potatoes out of microwave and chop up or slice thinly.
Add potatoes to skillet and cook for 10 minutes mix well add spinach,
cook for about 3 minutes until spinach starts to wilt
Remove all ingredients from the skillet.
beat eggs in a separate bowl add salt and pepper.
pour eggs into skillet let cook for 2-3 minutes and start adding your cooked ingredients to the egg mixture.
finish cooking in the oven 8-10 minutes. 
in the last minute of cooking sprinkle with cheese.
serve with toast and homemade salsa



pork souvlaki and tzatziki on a pita

Well I spent the day driving to and from the International Peace Gardens picking up kids from camp. They were a very happy bunch telling me all about their week and about the food.
My daughter wanted something different because they ate burgers,tacos,chicken and rice so I thought of this recipe.

1 1/2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp oregano  fresh or dried
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 lb boneless pork loin
trimmed and cut into 1 inch cubes
2 cups greek yogurt
1 cup peeled grated or cupped seeded cucumber
4 cloves garlic minced
1/2 tsp red chili
3 whole pitas

whisk together, lemon juice,olive oil,oregano,salt,pepper garlic minus 1/2 tsp pour over meat.
let marinate for an hour or so
put 4-6 pieces on each skewer

2 cups greek yogurt,cucumber, garlic,red pepper,1/2 tsp lemon juice,pinch of salt.
chill in fridge

grill meat for 8-10 minutes turning every 2 mins to grill each side

serve on a warm grilled pita with chopped tomato,red onion,tzatziki

Friday, 8 August 2014

Pizza dough

1/4 cup warm water
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp yeast
1 egg
1/4 water
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cups flour

1/4 cup warm water, sugar and yeast in a bowl, let rest 5 mins
Mix 1/4 cup water,egg,salt,oil, together and add yeast mixture.
Add flour mix and knead together about 5 mins.
Let rise 25 minutes, punch down, roll out and use!

Pizza buns just out

Just out of the oven!!

Kids are home from camp tomorrow

I decided because I will be on the road for most of the day tomorrow to make up some Pizza Buns.
I used my pizza dough recipe which you can find on my Blog and rolled the dough out just like if you were making cinnamon buns. Load up the dough with all the kids favorite toppings and roll the dough up and cut into slices, place on cookie sheets and let rise for 25 mins. Bake at 375 for 20-25 mins.
My batch makes 2 dozen so I freezer half the batch in individual bags for lunches or snacks.


with the hopes of making it...............

With the hopes of getting "the official email" next week I am doing some mystery box challenges.
If you have never watched the show this means you get a basic pantry and a mystery box of 5-10 things and make a restaurant quality dish out of it.

So I decided school is just around the corner and its time to rotate stock in the cupboards and freezer that for the next week I will have either my kids or husband put a mystery box together and that"s what I will cook for the day.
I will post each day what the mystery box is and what the results of the box was. pictures included.

I would also like to THANK all of those who follow my blog, have tried some of my recipes and have positively supported me on this journey.

couscous salad so simple and it takes 10 mins tops

1 cup couscous
1 1/4 cup water or stock chicken,beef,vegtable

1/2 cup chopped cucumber
1/2 cup grape tomatoes cut in half
1/4 red onion finely chopped
1/4 cup red and yellow pepper chopped
zest 1/2 lemon
juice 1/2 lemon
4 leaves of fresh basil finely chopped
1/2 cup feta cheese
4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp honey
pinch salt and pepper

bring stock to a full boil and stir in couscous turn heat to low for 3 mins
remove from heat, run a fork through the couscous to flake it apart.
put into a boil and add in add veggies, zest,basil,salt,pepper
in a small bowl mix vinegar,oil,lemon juice and honey together and drizzle over warm couscous
add feta cheese mix and refrigerate.
after it is chilled I sometimes drizzle a little more balsamic and olive oil over it.
Again this is a recipe I have to double or triple because my kids love it.

You can put any kind of raw or cooked veggies in you want, you can change up the flavour profile depending what you are serving it with
for example:
going a little Mexican
chop up an avocado
1 roasted red pepper chopped
red onion
roasted corn
jalapeno pepper finely chopped
drizzle with olive oil

Another day of decisions.............. Crab cakes, couscous salad,tempura veggies ?

Well as my little guys sits and watches cartoons and eats his dry shreddies, I am sitting in front of the laptop with a hot cup of coffee trying to decide what to cook today.
It rained most of the early morning and now looks like it is going to be a gorgeous but hot day again what do I cook today is my thought.
I am thinking pasta salad and crab cakes for supper or maybe a bunch of veggies in tempura batter or a couscous salad and bbq'd meat. The options are endless..............

Crab cakes

because I live on the prairies and in a rural community where fresh isn't readily available I use canned but if you live where you can get good fresh please use it instead.

serves 4-6 and at my house I have to double this if everyone is home.

olive oil
1 med.onion finely minced
2 cloves of garlic finely minced  I use roasted garlic if I have it.
3 cans of crab meat make sure it has 15% or more of claw meat There are 2 sizes of cans, I buy the bigger of the 2.
1 cup of bread crumbs  I use the seasoned panko crumbs by Presidents choice.
1 egg
2 tablespoons goat cheese and if you don't like goat cheese use mayonnaise
juice from 1/2 lemon
zest from 1/4 lemon
1/4 tsp cayenne

in a hot frying pan  medium heat  put your oil, onions,garlic cook til onions are caramelised 5-10 mins
In a large bowl put cooked onions,crabmeat,bread crumbs,egg,goat cheese,lemon juice,zest and cayenne
mix until blended well.
shape the mixture into 6 fat cakes just like you were making a burger. If mixture is a little too loose add a bit more bread crumbs.
place on a plate and chill for about 2 hours.
heat a frying pan on medium heat with a tsp of butter and a tsp of olive oil. fry each side of cake until you get a nice crisp crust. about 3-4 mins on each side.

serve with a chile mayonnaise
1 cup mayo
1/2 a chili pepper finely minced
zest/juice of 1 lime
1 tsp of chilula or your favorite hot sauce
mix together and chill until ready to serve.

Enjoy with a salad or as an appetizer

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Rootbeer pulled pork in the crockpot

3 lb pork shoulder roast
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 med onion diced
2 cloves garlic minced
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp coriander
2 bay leaves
1 small can tomato paste
1 can of water  use tomato paste can
1 can rootbeer
2 tbsp cider vinegar
2 tsp brown sugar
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

trim off any large fat pieces, put meat and onions in the crockpot,
mix all other ingredients together in a bowl, pour over the meat.
you can do this the night before and store the crock in the fridge
cook on medium for 5-6 hours or on low for 8 hours
The meat will just pull apart in the sauce.
I thicken my sauce with 3 tbsp cornstarch mix with 1 tbsp water.
I add it to the meat mixture while I make my side dish.
serve this meat on a bun,


Another Potato soup recipe but this is for every busy mom

This is a crock pot recipe because I know that being "super mom" is really hard.
This soup is hearty so you can make a quick salad and biscuits and you will have a great healthy supper.

6 slices of bacon cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 onion finely chopped
2 cups chicken stock
2 cup water
5 large potatoes diced
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dill    optional
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 cup flour
2 cup half/half cream
1 carrot diced
1 cup shredded cheese

In a frying pan brown your onions, and bacon
put them in your crock pot
add chicken stock,water,potatoes,salt,pepper, into the crock pot, give it a good mix
cook on low for 6-7 hours
put flour in a bowl and mix with the half and half cream once mixed well
add to the cooked soup stir and mix well and cook for 30 mins
you can stir in your cheese just before serving or sprinkle on each bowl.
My daughters call this perogie soup because it tastes like the filling of a perogie.

something else you could add if you want a protein dice up 3 chicken breasts and cook in the onion/bacon frying pan. put in the fridge until you get home from work or your busy family day.
add it to the soup when you stir in the flour cream mixture.

So good.......................................

Lemon zucchini loaf with lemon drizzle

1/2 cup shortening or butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4-1/2 cup milk
Zest 1 lemon
Juice 1/2 lemon
1/2 grated zucchini finely grated
Add zest and juice of lemon to zucchini
Cream together butter and sugar
Add eggs
Add salt,baking powder
Mix well add flour
Add zucchini and add milk slowly.
Batter should be light, fluffy. You may not need all the milk depending on how moist the Zucchini is.
Add to loaf pan or cupcake tons
Loaf @350 for 55-60 mins
Cupcake @ 350 for 20-24 mins
Drizzle 1/2 cup icing sugar juice from 1 lemon. Put in a sauce pan bring to a boil and stir until it turns to a syrup.
Drizzle in loaf or muffins as soon as they come out if the oven

Home made pasta sauce

1 shallot
1 med onion chopped
1 rib celery
1 carrot chopped or grated
1/2 zucchini grated
1 lb ground beef    you can use ground chicken or turkey
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 clove garlic chopped
6 mushrooms sliced
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil   I use fresh herbs but feel free to use dried
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp of fresh chilies or dried is fine   leave out if you don't like spice
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 can of tomatoes ( large)
1 can of tomato puree or crushed
1/2 a red or yellow or green pepper  chopped
You will see in a lot of my recipes I grate the veggies up and that is because of my 2 picky kids

sauteed the onions.garlic,celery,carrots, mushrooms for 10 mins
add beef and fry it for 10-15 mins
add spices,tomatoes,puree.
add balsamic
let simmer for an hour or so


Well my nerves are....................

I am getting more and more nervous as the day is approaching to find out if I will be going on to the next step of Masterchef Canada. Another 6-9 days before the official emails are set out.
I have a sinking feeling that I didn't make it, not that I am not a good enough cook but that I don't have "the look".

I really need to prove to myself that I am good enough and to make those who have taught me all their recipes and skills proud.

Sitting and contimplating what I am going to cook today.
I need to make some freezer meals for my husband's lunches, he hates to take sandwiches and needs at least 5 meals per trip. I try and have stews,soups,lasagna etc in the freezer for him.

So those are my randon thoughts for the morning as I enjoy my morning coffee.

Until we cook again......................

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Country seed bread

400 degree  for 15 mins
reduce heat to 350 for 30 mins

1 1/4 cup warm water
2 tbsp oil
2 cup flour bread flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup flax seed
1 tbsp poppy seed
2 tbsp chai seed
2 tbsp sunflower seed
2 tbsp hemp heart seed
3 tbsp honey
1 1/2 tsp salt
3 tsp quick rise yeast

in a small bowl combine water,honey,oil,salt
in a large bowl combine flours,flax,chai,sunflower,hemp,poppy seeds,yeast
stir in water mixture until a sticky dough is formed.
turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 6-8 mins
you may need a little more flour if dough is still sticky. you want the dough to be a nice smooth dough.
place in a warm greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap  place in a warm but not hot place
dough should double in size
punch down and form into a loaf pan
let rise for 1 hour
bake as per directions at top of page

remove from pan and allow to cool on cooling rack.

chocolate zucchini cake or cupcakes

350 degrees   bundt pan or 18 cupcake pan     55 mins for cake    22-25 mins cupcakes
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup oil
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cup flour  I use 1 1/2 cup all purpose 1 cup whole wheat
1/3 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup half/half cream or milk
2 cup finely grated zucchini
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1/4 cup of unsalted nuts chopped  if desired. I leave them out so the kids can take these to school.

cream together butter,oil and sugar
add eggs,vanilla  beat well
stir all dry ingredients together and add 1/2 to butter mix
add 1/2 milk mix
add remaining flour mix
add remaining milk mix well

stir in zucchini, chocolate chips and nuts

these are so moist and chocolatey that there is no need for frosting.
I have super picky kids in my daycare so I partially  peel my zucchini because the kid will pull things apart looking for "weird stuff"

chocolate chip cookie squares / Puff wheat squares

the next few recipes are kid favorite recipes and great for their school lunches. great 9 x 13 pans so no need to buy pre packaged snacks.

9x13 greased pan          350 degree   15-20 mins

1 cup butter
1 3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 cup flour   I use 1 cup all purpose 1 cup whole wheat
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup chocolate chips

cream together butter,sugar
add eggs,soda,powder,vanilla
cream together
add flour mix well
add 1/2 cup chocolate chips stir well

place in greased pan and sprinkle 1/2 cup chocolate chips on the top.
cut into squares once cooled.
you can substitute 1/4 cup of flour with a mix of ground flax,hemp,chai seeds. your kids will never know.


1/3 cup butter
1/2 cup corn syrup
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp cocoa
1 tsp vanilla
8 cups puffed wheat

combine butter,syrup,brown sugar,cocoa, and vanilla in a sauce pan.
Stir constantly on medium heat.until starts to boil with bubbles all over the surface. remove from heat
Put puff wheat into a large bowl and pour hot syrup over the top and mix well.
pour into greased pan 9x13 and press down   chill for 2 hours.

you can add dry fruit such as cranberries,raisins,chopped up mango as well just remember if you add 1/2 cup of dry fruit remove 1/4 cup of puffed wheat.
a seed mix non salted would be great as well.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Chocolate peanut butter fudgy brownies

I made these for my daughter after her first day of work.

8 tbsp coconut oil
3 tbsp butter
1 1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup cocoa
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup chocolate chips
2 tbsp peanut butter

Cream coconut oil,butter together
Add sugar cream together
Mix in cocoa,salt,vanilla and eggs
Stir in chocolate chips

8x8 square pan. 325 degree oven 30 mins

Put batter in lined pan and put peanut butter in 5 spots and marble thru batter.


Lunch time home made pasta

Check out @abusymomscook's Tweet:

Homemade tagliatelle pasta

I have been taking about homemade pasta for 2 days so this morning I have made tagliatelle pasta and to toss it in sauteed bacon,spinach,shallots,mushrooms,roasted garlic,fresh basil and ricotta cheese.

What a great homemade lunch. 60 minutes and I am done.

Monday, 4 August 2014

Garden fresh food

I love this time of the year when I can go out to the garden and pick baby rainbow swiss chard, zucchini,finger beets and carrots for supper.

Tonight I made cauliflower mash with a little roasted garlic and cheddar cheese, finger beets boiled with butter and salt and pepper, braised beef short ribs seasoned with thyme all spice,Serrano chili, tomatoes,roast garlic and onions and carrots.
my wee guy who is 2 1/2 ate all of his plate and then said "that's big licious! can I have more?" and he proceeded to eat another plate of it.

Out of my 4 kids, two are super picky and two are great eaters. I wish my athletic child would eat more fruits and veggies and that is why I grate and hide so many veggies in baking,stews and sauces.

As much as I like to cook with new exciting ingredients, I am a home cook at heart!!!


1/2 cup corn starch
1/2 icing sugar
1 cup flour
3/4 cup butter

cream together icing sugar and butter, mix in corn starch and flour.
form a log in saran wrap and put in the fridge.
cut into slices put a cherry or pecan, sprinkles on the top bake at 325 for 8-10 mins
just until lightly brown

Canning and Pickling

Some of my favorites:

Dill Pickles

7 jars

18-24 pickling cucumbers  I cut them into spears
3.5 cloves of garlic  1/2 a clove for each jar
7 bunches of baby dill
3 quarts of water
1 quart of vinegar
5 tbsp of pickling salt

put cucumber spears in cold water for 1 hour,
in clean, sanitized jars put dill and garlic in the bottom of each jar
fill each jar with spears.
combine water,salt,vinegar in a pot and bring to a boil. Let boil for 3-4 mins
let cool for 3-4 mins and then laddle into jars.
put boiled lids on and tighten
place in a canner or roasting pan add water to roaster (as full as you can)
place in the oven for 30 mins at 300 degrees

take jars out and let stand on the counter not touching each other. when you hear popping the jars have sealed. I keep in a dark cool spot for 14 days before enjoying

Mustard pickles

12 large cucumbers  peel and thinly slice
3 medium zucchini   peel and thinly slice
7 quarts of water
2 1/2 cups pickling salt
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp dry mustard
3 tbsp flour
1 cup white sugar
2 cup white vinegar
1 cup red pepper chopped

mix cold water and pickling salt pour over cucumber and zucchini  Let stand for 8-12 hours covered.
Rinse twice and drain well
mix turmeric,dry mustard,flour,sugar together and then add vinegar stir well and heat until it thickens.
add cucumber,zucchini,red peppers to hot liquid.
stir and bring to a light boil for 3 mins
add to hot sterile jars close immediately with lid. store in a dark cool dry area.
enjoy after 7 days

Sunday, 3 August 2014


makes 24

6 oz semi sweet chocolate
2 tbsp of your favourite liqueur  I love Kahlua
3 tbsp unsalted butter
4 tbsp confection sugar
1/2 cup ground almonds or pecans
1/4 cup grated fine chocolate  semi sweet

place a boil over a boiling pot of water. make sure water is not touching the bottom of the bowl.
put chocolate and liqueur in bowl and stir until melted
add the butter, stir until melted
add sugar and the ground nuts stir until sugar and nuts are combined well.

Take off heat and let stand in a cool place until mixture firms up and you can handle it to roll balls.
roll balls into the grated chocolate.
place in candy wrappers, I use mini muffin holders because I always have them in the house.
place in fridge and let chill.
great for Christmas or baby shower, wedding.

change up what you grate to roll them in, change up the liqueur or use vanilla or other flavouring,

Potato bacon leek soup one of my kids favorites

2 leeks chopped up
6 slices of bacon chopped up
1/2 medium size onion chopped up small
4 medium size potatoes peeled and chopped
1 carrot  peeled and chopped up small
2 stalks of celery chopped small
1/2 tsp thyme
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp chili flakes
5 cups chicken stock
1 cup whipping cream

1 cup grated cheese
3 slices bacon chopped and cooked to a crispy texture

put in a soup pot, medium heat
chopped up bacon cook about 5 mins then add leeks and onions
cook until onions turn clear
add celery,carrots,salt pepper,thyme,chilis,potatoes
cook about 15 minutes and then add your chicken stock
cook until potatoes are soft
strain mixture and add all veggies and 1 1/2 cup to blender or use a potato masher. just mash until a little bit chunky add back into pot with remaining stock stir together.
Add whipping cream right before serving and heat on medium low. Do Not Boil

garnish with shredded cheese and bacon bits

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Dangers of using ingredients you don't know

So I watch a lot of cooking challenge shows and I went to the store and bought a few things I have never used or tasted before.

Jiccama. Never tasted it or used it.
You can eat it raw or cooked

Cassava!!!  Don't eat it raw! It is poisonous when eaten Raw.
I learned first hand. This raw can actually kill you if you eat too much. I only ate a small slice and I paid the price.
Stuck in bed vomiting/diarrhea, headache. This happened on a Friday and I was still ill on Monday.
We thought it was the flu until I pulled up some recipes to try with it and then it all made sense!
I encourage everyone to try new things but read about the ingredient before using.

Scary.... Scary....Scary

Basic homemade pasta recipe

My kids love making homemade pasta and we make a day of it.
We make Fettuccini, ravioli normally

4 cups flour
5 eggs
5 tbsp semolina flour for dusting
1 tbsp olive oil

Pile flour in a mountain and make a well.
Add the eggs and olive oil to the center of the flour.
Mix well and knead together as you would pastry.
Wrap in plastic wrap and let rest for 45-60 minutes.
I have a hand pasta roller but you can use a rolling pin.

My filling for ravioli is what ever my family is in the mood for.

Why buy salad dressings?!?!

Dressings are so easy to make and you can change them up to fit the flavor profile of your meal.

Basic salad dressing
2 tbsp lemon juice
5 tbsp of olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper

Balsamic salad dressing

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
5 tbsp olive oil. Sometimes I use flavored olive oil.
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh pepper
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp basil finely chopped

You can switch up the basil with lemon thyme or rosemary depending in your meal.

Honey mustard dressing

1/2 tsp roasted garlic smashed or mushed
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp grain mustard
2 tbsp lemon juice
5 tbsp olive oil.

See how the basic dressing can quickly change to something different.

Citrus ginger dressing

2 tsp grated ginger
1 tsp orange zest
2 tbsp orange juice
5 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

Friday, 1 August 2014

It was dip day at my house

We are going to a friends for "happy hour" and I was told to bring a dip and salsa.
Its 30 degrees outside so I started thinking fresh salsa.

Cut up a pineapple and grilled half of it, then chopped it all up. Fresh and grilled
Roasted a yellow pepper chopped it up, finely chopped 1/2 a jalapeño, juice of 1/2 lemon. mix all together
Oh my Gosh it is so good.

Artichoke and ricotta dip

I grilled a can of artichoke hearts, and put them in the food processor.
Juice of half a lemon and zest
A good punch of sea salt and pepper
1 cup of ricotta cheese
1 cup of chick peas
1/2 a roasted jalapeño
Mix all in the food processor
Store in the fridge.
Serve with veggies or crackers

Watermelon shrimp feta salad

4 cups cubed watermelon  bite size cubes
18-24 peeled shrimp tail off.  sprinkle with 1/2 tsp cayenne before cooking The size of shrimp is up to you
2 cup baby greens
1/2 cup crumbled feta

3 tbsp lime juice
4 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh basil
sea salt
ground pepper
1 tsp honey

cook shrimp in 1 tbsp of oil           let cool

put watermelon,basil and baby greens in a bowl and toss
add cooled shrimp
add feta
add dressing a bit at a time
toss and serve
I don't put my greens in until just before serving

you can dress the watermelon,basil,shrimp and feta with the dressing and then just before you serve toss in the baby greens