Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Spiced Ale? Yes please!

This isn't too foody, but I wanted to pop in and make a plug for the seasonal brew put out by Big Rock breweries this year: McNally's Winter Spice Strong Ale.
It is a yummy full bodied ale brewed with cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and a hint of ginger.
I tried some at the LB and picked some up on the spot.
It is delish.
If you get the chance, try some before it goes away...

Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas Cookies

Been a while since I posted anywhere, but I thought I would share my Mum's recipe for vanillekipfl. These are amongst my favourite things about Christmas time. These are an Austrian tradition which she picked up from my godparents. Enjoy.

- Magnus


1 cup butter
1 1/4 cup ground almonds or hazelnuts
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt

Cream butter and sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in flour 1/2 cup at a time. Add remaining ingredients and continue beating until mixture is slightly stiff.
Form into crescents and bake @ 350 about 15 minutes, or until lightly coloured. Remove from oven to racks. Cool 5 minutes, dust with icing sugar and cool again for 15 min.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Eggnog waffles

It's eggnog season again.

This weekend we started into the eggnog craze with something new: eggnog waffles.
They were very good. We had them with some maple syrup and some probably could have thrown in some nuts too. These were yummy just as they were, although I wish I had a Belgian waffle maker so they could be extra thick and fluffy:
This makes enough for 4 hungry people, so feel free to scale it down a bit. They do freeze well though and make awesome emergency toaster breakfasts. Just saying...

2 c flour
2 c eggnog
2 large eggs - beaten
6 T vegetable oil
2 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1/2 t salt

In a large bowl, sift the flour with the baking powder, baking soda and salt.
In a separate bowl, mix together eggnog, eggs and oil. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Mix until smooth. Cook waffles in well-greased preheated waffle iron.

I also had my first persimmon this weekend. YUM! I am trying to find an awesome persimmon recipe...I'll be back with it soon, I promise.


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Roasted root veggies and baked fish

Last night I had lots of work to do (what a surprise), so I made a meal that took long to bake, but required very little work from me and could be ignored...and it was SO GOOD.
In a mixing bowl I thinly sliced a few potatoes, a yam, and part of a butternut squash (cubed it because it cooks faster) and some onion. I drizzled on some olive oil and some Organic natural herb seasoning (from costco) and a bit of pepper on this, tossed it to coat and spread it out on a foil covered cookie pan and baked it for 45 minutes at 375, turning things halfway. Along with it I put a trout fillet on top of some sliced lemon and onion and sprinkled some dill and garlic on top and wrapped it in a tinfoil pouch and stuck that in the oven too.
The results was very healthy and insanely delicious - easy cleanup too. Maybe it's all the snow lately, but nothing says yum like baked squash and yams. And i love baked trout - the foil pouch kept it moist and lemony.

Mmmm...and there was more for lunch today. Bwaha!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Pirate Bakery #1: Apple Oat Muffins

In my attempt to avoid my endless assignment work (yes it really is endless) I took a muffin break. I’m really been working on healthifying some of my favourite muffins recipes. I have become a healthy pirate on the seas of deliciousness - stealing my favourite recipes and making them healthier and dare I say better than they were before. My muffiny skull and crossed wooden spoon Jolly Roger warns on comers that tasty things are coming. (yes I have been working too much...humour me).

I have done it again - scrumptious moist muffins and they're about 135 calories each…really low in fat and full of good things. A perfect snack. The only way I could improve these even more would be to swap out sugar for maple syrup, but I have no maple syrup around what can ya do…and the banana was just because I had a ripe banana…you could leave it out if you don't have one. I think it helped.

We are the Pirate Bakery. These are our muffins. Enjoy.

1 small apple peeled and chopped up

2 L brown eggs

1/2 c unsweetened apple sauce

~2T oil (a "glodge" worth. You could leave it out but it seems to add a real richness)

1 ripe banana mashed up smooth

1 c whole wheat flour

1 c white flour

2/3 c brown sugar (could cut to 1/2 if you like. I like this amount)

1 ¼ c 1% milk

1 T vanilla

1 T cinnamin

½ c wild oatmeal

1 well rounded T baking powder

½ t salt

Put oats and milk in a bowl and let sit 5 minutes. Then add everything except the flour and baking powder and mix up well with a whisk. Mix flour and b.powder together and sprinkle over top evenly, then mix until just mixed (Don't overmix or you get chewy muffins) and fill up muffin papers in the pan to the top…these don't rise too much so don't worry about overflow. I had enough for probably 13 muffins, but what can ya do? J just ate the rest of the batter. Problem solved :)

Bake for ~18-20 minutes at 375, until the tops bounce back when you tap them. Do not overbake them or you will be sad. Noone wants to be sad. Use a toothpick to check if they're done if you aren't sure - it will come out clean. And lately I usually don't do muffin papers, but for low fat muffins like this break down, swallow your environmentyness and use muffin papers…otherwise they're a real bitch to get out of the pan whole…

There you go - enjoy. I did.

Delish and good for ya.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


In my recent beginnings of Operation Uberfrau, I've also been trying to find healthier "cleaner" and more nutrition filled foods. I've read a lot of how quinoa is one of those "wonder foods". It contains a balanced set of essential amino acids and is a complete protein source for a plant food. It's higher in protein than rice and is a good source of dietary fiber,phosphorus, magnesium and iron. And it's fun to say (it's pronounced "keeenwah!!") :)
I've had quinoa for a while but never gotten around to it. I can screw up any kind of rice so I was nervous...but I finally made some up: I went to the Savvy Vegetarian and followed their instructions for quinoa and it worked perfectly: I soaked 1 cup of quinoa in hot water for 5 minutes and then drained it. I then brought it to a boil in 1 1/2 c water with a spash of olive oil and salt. I put on a lid and turned down the heat so it simmered for 15 minutes, then took it off the heat for another 5 and voila! Fluffy slightly nutty flavoured quinoa. And I must say - I love it. It's easy to cook, has a unique texture and flavour and can take the place of potatoes, rice or couscous in a lot of meals. We had it with some curried lentils and it was yummy.
I had some more last night and made up a salad with it:

1 c quinoa, cooked (ends up as about 2-3 c cooked)
1 c black beans
1 c corn
1 tomato diced
1/4 c red onion (would do with a bit less next time)
I added a dressing from 1/4 c extra virgin olive oil, some cayenne, salt, basil and pepper, as well as 2 T lemon juice, 1 t lime juice and a few splashes of rice vinegar whisked together.
Stirred that all up and had it with a homemade burger. Yum. That salad could be a meal on it's own really with some more beans tossed in.

Mmm. Quinoa.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Pumpkin pancakes

On sunday I wanted some healthier pancakes. With fall comes my obsession with pumpkin and I hunted up a recipe for pumpkin pancakes at my favourite recipe site ( and OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH MAN they are delicious. Pictures? I was too busy making groany noises to remember to take them. There's a photo on the website...
The recipe makes a bunch (I probably could have halved it for just the 2 of us) so I have some tucked away in the freezer for lunches too. Squeee!
The recipe is here. All I did was replace the spices with plain old pumpkin pie spice (I had no ginger or allspice kicking around) and used 1 cup whole wheat flour with 1 cup white flour and they were VERY soft and fluffy, and healthier than my regular pancakes (only 2 T of oil) and seriously delicious. The batter is thick making nice thick fluffy cakes, which is the way I like them. Cook them on medium heat tho - the sugar in the pumpkin browns up quickly...and you get fluffier cakes that way too.

5 gold stars - They are on my list of fantastic breakfasts now.
Try some soon - you'll be glad you did!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

mmm...forbidden sauce...

If you know me, despite my best efforts at being a sophisticated adult who eats "real" food, I still loves me my ketchup. Ketchup on tuna fish sandwiches. Ketchup on french fries. Ketchup on burgers...not as bad as I once was, but you get the idea. My husband, who was raised British and doesn't get this whole extra sauce thing will maybe dip fries in mayo or salsa and cringes at the stuff.
Silly man.

Just when I thought I could perhaps wean myself over to the occasional salsa or BBQ sauce dippings my visiting family brought me some of this deliciousness:

Country Ketchup from Stonewall Kitchens

"What's the big deal? " you say. "It's just fancy overpriced ketchup!"

Oh my friends you have no idea.

It's got little chunks of tomato and garlic and some zesty spices that make it quite honestly the best ketchup out there. I hesitate to even call it ketchup's better than ketchup. It's the Jaguar of the tomato saucy world. Honest. I could eat it with a spoon. I'm going to have to try some of this company's other stuff and see if the rest of it is as delish as this.

If you see it around give it a try. Yummers...

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Greek style chicken taco wrap...things

On the way home from work on Saturday I had an idea so I picked up a few things and went home to experiment and came up with my version of what a Greek taco would be like. They also took less than 15 minutes to make- bonus.

You'll need:

2 small chicken breasts, cubed up
1/4 c white wine
~3 T lemon juice
1/2 t Greek spice (Cavendish low salt)
1t oregano
3 cloves crushed garlic
ground pepper to taste (~1/2 T)
splash olive oil

Toss all this in a pan and saute the chicken until all liquid is absorbed and it tastes tangy and spicy and yummy. Resist the urge to eat it all then and there.

Next dice up:
1 large tomato
1/3 garden cucumber (about 3/4c)
1/4 c red onion
Toss together in a bowl with a splash of greek seasoning, 1T of lemon juice or a bit of balsamic vinegar.

Then get the rest of what you need:
Shred up about 1c of lettuce
1/3 c crumbled feta
Tzatziki (~1/3c)
1/4 c balsamic and fig dressing (Kraft)
5-6 whole wheat wraps

In each wrap put chicken, topped with a few T of tzatziki and a tiny bit of fig dressing, then cheese and a generous scoop of veggies and some lettuce. Wrap up and eat, making groany noises....

Experimental success! These are definitely going on the monthly food list of yummy fast meals. :) We had a bit of white wine with them and felt absolutely posh...

Monday, May 17, 2010

mexican corn bean salad

It's been a while. Sorry. Some time I'll catch up on all my recipes as of late (some have photos even) but for now, I thought I'd share with you the Mexican style salad I had for supper last night, along with some marinated BBQ'd pork tenderloin and tin foil steamed snap peas. It was deeeelicious.

2 c romaine lettuce
1/2 c corn (I thawed out some peaches and cream corn)
1 c cooked black or white beans (I used canned rinsed black beans)
1/4 c diced green onion
1/4 c diced tomato (called for a handful of cherry tomatoes, but I don't like them so there)
1/2 c fried wontons (originally called for crumbled corn chips but I didn't have any)

1 avocado smooshed up with a fork
3 T lime juice
3/4 c salsa
1/2 c fat free sour cream
4 splashes Tabasco sauce

Put salad in bowl with the rest of the stuff on top. Smoosh avacado with the lime and add the rest and stir well. Pour dressing over salad and toss right before eating. Eat it all up - it will get all soggy if you don't eat it that day.
I have to note that this made about twice the dressing I would use on a salad. BUT, I think that's great because guess what I'm having for lunch today?
Yes! More yummy salad. Yum.

I loved this salad - it's healthy and easy and a good accompaniment to anything really. You could have it on it's own for a meal too. Another great recipe from Vegetarian Times. I love that magazine....

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Better Living Through Chemistry

I stumbled upon this post about scientific themed cookies.
Then this one...

Consider me totally blown away and utterly inspired.
MAN I want to make me some lab cookies right now!!

mee hee...

Monday, January 25, 2010

Old lady salad rocks!

I am so glad my husband loves what everyone else seems to think of as granny salad. It's so easy and yummy. Not too bad for you either. I make it all the time...

It's this easy:
Grate or finely chop up ~2 c green cabbage and throw in 1 diced apple & a handful of chopped nuts (almonds, pumpkiin seeds or walnuts are great). You can even add in 1/2 c seedless grapes cut in half add to this (or add them instead of the apple OR cabbage). Add ~ 1/3c low-fat mayo (just enough to cover/ coat things) and stir together. Let it sit about 15 minutes for the natural sugars to seep out of the fruit and there you go - simple easy delicious coleslaw/old lady salad.

Love it. I'm toying with replacing some mayo with fat free sour cream to see if it tastes the same to cut out some fat. I'll report on the results :)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Glutenous Rice Balls

Mmmm...a while back at superstore I saw a package of Spring Home Glutinous Rice Balls with Red Bean Paste filling in the freezer section when I was getting paneer. I love glutinous rice treats and I love red bean paste...and when I read the ingredients there was nothing sinister: glutinous rice, red bean paste, oil, water and suger. I grabbed a package. I just had to know.

Then it took us months to get up the nerve to try them...cuz you had to boil them and stuff...and I had no idea what they'd be like.
A few nights ago we finally made them out of curiosity.


And super easy - boil water. Add balls. Boil a few minutes until they float...drain and eat!
190 calories for 3 so not really healthy, but I like them. A lot.
Definitely on my new easy dessert list - apparently they make peanut centred ones too. I'll have to track them down.
If you can find them try them out. They are delish!

Addition: I tried the peanut ones. They are even better!!!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Breakfasty Goodness

I am enamoured with corn meal right now. I am finding it far more versatile than rice. This morning I blended cornmeal cakes with something I have been doing for breakfast for while now. Mainly this happened because I have no bread and did not feel like going to Mac's (a convenience store here in Canada) to buy some.
I had 3 small tart tins and placed my cooked cornmeal inside to cool down and take shape. As the cornmeal boiled away I only added 1/2 tsp of salt and 1 tsp of butter to 1.5 cups of cornmeal/ Once cooked (and regular cornmeal is finer than polenta and cooks faster) I placed them into the tins to take shape.
I stewed two roma tomatoes and cooked them in a pan with garlic, (crushed) diced onion, herbs, ground pepper, diced green pepper and hot paprika. I also added a pinch of salt and brown sugar- small pinches each. Once cooked I cooked two eggs over easy. I spooned the tomato mixture over the 3 corn cakes, which were sitting beside each other in a triangle shape, and placed the eggs on top. I like runny yolks, so I punctured the yolks and let them run all over. Fanatasic. I'll be making that again this week. I had enough corn meal left over for other meals.