Sunday, March 31, 2013

Day 90: Savoury Stuffing with Apples and Thyme

Happy Easter everyone!  Hope you all are having a great weekend.  I just wanted to share my stuffing recipe with you.  It is a family favourite.  Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients
1 loaf french bread cut into 1" pieces
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup butter
1 medium white onion, chopped
4 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1/4 cup fresh thyme leaves
2 green apples, peeled and cut into small cubes

Directions
1) In a large fry pan heat butter, onions, celery, apples and thyme for 3 - 5 minutes.
2) Add chicken stock to butter mixture and simmer for 3 minutes.
3) In a large bowl toss bread and butter mixture together.
4) Butter a baking dish and fill with stuffing.
5) Bake at 350F for approximately 30 - 45 minutes or until top is golden and forms a crunchy top.


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Saturday, March 30, 2013

Day 89: Coke Float






































Ingredients
1 - 2 scoops of real vanilla ice cream
enough coke to fill the glass
maraschino cherry for garnish

Directions
1) In a tall glass add enough ice cream to reach the top of the glass.  I used about 4 tiny scoops in this glass.  Basically you want room around the sides of the ice-cream but lots of height.
2) Slowly pour coke into the glass until the foam bubbles to the top and the coke fills the glass about 1/2 - 3/4 full.
3) Serve with a cherry.
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Friday, March 29, 2013

Day 88: Spicy Chicken Rice Soup


Ingredients
4 cups chicken stock
2 chicken breasts, cooked and cut into small pieces
1/2 cup white rice, rinsed
3 tsp fresh thyme
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tsp hot pepper sauce pepper to taste
3 green onions, thinly sliced

Directions
1) In a large pot simmer all ingredients (except the green onions) over medium heat for 15 - 20 minutes.
2) Add green onion to garnish just before serving.
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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Day 87: Tropical Chocolate Sundae

Today was a very warm sunny day.  It felt more like summer than spring! So, to celebrate the nice weather, my  daughter and I made sundaes...


Ingredients
1 scoop vanilla ice cream
3 T chocolate sauce
1 tsp coconut
3 - 4 slices of banana
1/4 cup mini marshmallows
whipped cream
maraschino cherry for garnish

Directions
1) Place ice cream in the centre of a small bowl.
2) Pour chocolate sauce on top of the ice cream.
3) Sprinkle with fruit and coconut.
4) Add a bit of whipped cream and garnish with a cherry.
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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Day 86: Tomato Thyme Crisps







































Ingredients
1 pkg classic water crackers
1 pkg plain cream cheese
approximately 30 tiny roma tomatoes, halved
fresh thyme
salt and pepper to taste

Directions
1) Spread crackers with a layer of cream cheese.
2) Salt and pepper the cream cheese.
3) Arrange tomato halves on top of the cream cheese.
4) Top crackers with a few thyme leaves and serve on a platter.


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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Day 85: Apple Crisp

Ingredients
Crumble

1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1) With a fork, combine all ingredients until the mixture becomes crumbly.
2) Set aside.

Filling
6 apples, peeled and sliced to 1/4" thickness
2 T lemon juice
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp honey
1. Coat apple slices with the lemon juice so that the fruit won't turn brown.
2. Mix all ingredients together to coat the apple slices.
3. Bake in a baking dish at 400F for 30 -40 minutes until crumble is golden brown and apple filling begins to bubble up.
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Monday, March 25, 2013

Day 84: Lefse

I'm not going to lie, this is one of the most time consuming recipes you'll ever make.  But no self respecting Scandinavian hasn't made at least one batch in their life.  And so, at the insistence of my sister, we decided to finally try our hand at the family recipe.  Well, at least a variation and I am quite happy with the results.  I hope you like it!

Ingredients
10 cups mashed potatoes (about 32 medium sized red potatoes)
5 cups flour divided in half
1/2 cup cream
3 T butter

Directions
1) Boil and mash potatoes.
2) Add butter and cream to potatoes and whip until fluffy. Set aside to cool.
3) Add half of the flour to the potato mixture and mix until combined and dough forms a ball.
4) Divide the dough into 4 pieces.
5) Onto a generously floured surface, place one of the dough pieces and roll into a long roll about 2 1/2" in diameter.
6) Cut 2 " pieces and set aside.
7) Take a piece of the dough and roll it on a floured surface until it is very thin and round.  This will take some practice as the dough is very sticky  and you need to keep adjusting the flour.
8) Using an electric griddle pan at medium high heat, cook each lefse until little brown spots form.  This will take approximately 2 minutes on each sides.
9) Serve warm, rolled up with butter and white sugar.
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Sunday, March 24, 2013

Day 83: Berry Crumble Muffins

Today I am going to give you a recipe that lets you cheat a little bit.  These muffins are based off of a blueberry muffin mix but I promise you,  no one would ever guess that this recipe isn't made from scratch. Hope you enjoy!


Crumble
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1) With a fork, combine all ingredients until the mixture becomes crumbly.
2) Set aside.

Muffins
1 cup frozen mixed berries, roughly chopped
3 cups blueberry muffin mix
1 cup milk
2 eggs

1) In a bowl, combine muffin mix, milk and eggs until combined.
2) Fold in berries until incorporated without over mixing.
3) Pour batter into buttered muffin tins, filling 3/4 full.
4) Sprinkle each muffin with a spoonful of crumble mixture.
5) Bake at 400F for 20 - 25 minutes.


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Saturday, March 23, 2013

Day 82: Old Fashioned Rice Pudding

I love rice pudding.  It is also one of those treats that only tastes good home-made. This recipe is so rich and creamy and best of all...it is super easy to make.  Enjoy!





































Ingredients
3 cups prepared white rice
2 cups milk
1/2 cup milk for finishing
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup currants
2 T butter
1/2 tsp vanilla

Directions
1) Over medium heat, stir 2 cups of milk with rice, sugar, cinnamon and salt until thick and creamy(about 7-8 minutes).
2) Add eggs and 1/2 cup of milk to rice mixture and stir continuously and cook for 2 -3 minutes.
3) Mix in the currants, butter and vanilla until combined.


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Friday, March 22, 2013

Day 81: Blueberry Apple Pies


Pie Crust
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup butter, cold and cut into small pieces
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
6 - 8 T ice water

1. In a food processor, combine flour, salt and sugar and pulse until mixed.
2. Add butter to flour mixture one piece at a time while pulsing.
3. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time until dough begins to stick together in the processor.
4. Remove dough from the mixer and divide into 4 pieces.  Shape each piece into a disk shape and wrap with plastic wrap.  Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Filling
1cup fresh blueberries
2 apples, peeled and chopped into small pieces 
1/4 cup currants
2 T lemon juice
2 T flour
2 T sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

1. Coat fruit with the lemon juice so that the apple won't turn brown.
2. Mix all ingredients together until combined.

Pie Assembly
1. Remove dough from refrigerator and roll on a floured surface to 1/4 " thickness.
2. Fill the centre of each pie crust leaving a  1/2" border.
4. Fold pie crust over the filling and press closed.
5. Brush with a bit of egg yolk and then sprinkle with sugar.
6. Bake at 350ºF for 20-25 minutes.  
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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Day 80:Fig & Thyme Tarts


Ingredients
Pie Crust
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup butter, cold and cut into small pieces
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
6 - 8 T ice water

1. In a food processor, combine flour, salt and sugar and pulse until mixed.
2. Add butter to flour mixture one piece at a time while pulsing.
3. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time until dough begins to stick together in the processor.
4. Remove dough from the mixer and divide in two pieces.  Shape each half into a disk shape and wrap with plastic wrap.  Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Filling
fig jam
2 T fresh thyme leaves, roughly chopped


Tart Assembly
1. Remove dough from refrigerator and roll on a floured surface to 1/4 " thickness.
2. Cut the dough with a triangle cookie cutter.
3. Fill the centre of 1/2 of  the pie crusts with a tiny spoonful of jam and sprinkle with a few thyme leaves.(leaving a  1/2" border).
4. Place the remaining pie crusts on top of each crust bottoms.
5. Brush with a bit of egg yolk and then sprinkle with sugar and a few extra thyme leaves.
6. Bake at 350ºF for 15-20 minutes.  


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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Day 79: Chicken Fried Rice With Mushrooms






































Ingredients
3 chicken breasts, cooked and finely chopped
4 cups white rice,prepared
1 cup frozen peas and carrots, thawed
4 green onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups brown mushrooms, finely chopped
4 eggs, scrambled and finely chopped
4 T vegetable oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
pepper to taste

Directions
1) In a fry pan or wok add 1 T of oil and add mushrooms. Cook until soft.
2) Add the rest of oil and add all ingredients except soy sauce to pan.
3) Cook until all ingredients are heated.
4) Add soy sauce to rice mixture and stir until combined.
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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Day 78: Smoked Salmon & Thyme Spinach Wrap







































Ingredients
6 tortilla shells
1 small package of smoked salmon
4 cups spinach leaves
6 oz cream cheese
3 T fresh thyme leaves
6 T caesar salad dressing
salt and pepper to taste

Directions
1) Spread cream cheese down the centre of each tortilla shell.
2) Layer remaining ingredients on top of the cream cheese.
3) Roll the wrap tightly and cut in half.
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Monday, March 18, 2013

Day 77: Mini Apple Currant Pies

Today I made pies.  Tiny little bite sized ones that are full of flavour and  would be great with a scoop of ice cream and  a cup of tea.





































Recipe
Pie Crust
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup butter, cold and cut into small pieces
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
6 - 8 T ice water

1. In a food processor, combine flour, salt and sugar and pulse until mixed.
2. Add butter to flour mixture one piece at a time while pulsing.
3. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time until dough begins to stick together in the processor.
4. Remove dough from the mixer and divide in two pieces.  Shape each half into a disk shape and wrap with plastic wrap.  Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Filling
2 apples, peeled and chopped into small pieces 
1/4 cup currants
1T lemon juice
2 T flour
2 T sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

1. Coat apple slices with the lemon juice so that the fruit won't turn brown.
2. Mix all ingredients together to coat the apple.

Pie Assembly
1. Remove dough from refrigerator and roll on a floured surface to 1/4 " thickness.
2. Cut the dough with a round cookie cutter.
3. Fill the centre of 1/2 of  the pie crusts leaving a  1/2" border.
4. Place the remaining pie crusts on top of each crust bottoms.
5. Brush with a bit of egg yolk and then sprinkle with sugar.
6. Bake at 350ºF for 15-20 minutes. 
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Sunday, March 17, 2013

Day 76: Apple Martini

Happy St. Patrick's day! Here is a drink you might like to celebrate...





































Ingredients
2 oz vodka
1 oz green apple schnapps

Directions
1) Place all ingredients in a martini shaker half filled with ice.
2) Shake martini vigorously and pour into a martini glass and serve.
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Saturday, March 16, 2013

Day 75: Clam Chowder






































Ingredients

1/4 - 1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp cayenne
3 cups whole milk
5   6 oz cans minced clams with the juice
3 large red potatoes, peeled, boiled and diced
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 cup parsley, chopped
1 tsp dry thyme
1 tsp dry rosemary
1 cup sour cream
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

1. In a stockpot, melt butter and add flour, cayenne, salt and pepper and stir until smooth.
2. Slowly wisk in milk, maintaining a smooth consistency.
3. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Then let simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.


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Friday, March 15, 2013

Day 74: Open-Faced Radish Sandwich


Ingredients
4 slices of white bread, crusts removed
1/2 cup cream cheese, sliced into 1/4" slices
6 radishes, sliced thinly
8 cilantro sprigs

Directions
1) Lay slices of cream cheese on top of bread slices.
2) Arrange radishes on top of sandwich and finish with a garnish of cilantro.
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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Day 73: Nanaimo Squares





Base         

1 cup graham cracker crumbs         

1/2 cup sweetned shredded coconut                  

1/4 cup cocoa powder         

1/4 cup  sugar         

1/3 cup butter, melted         

1 egg, lightly beatenCream Filling         

1/4 cup butter         

2 tbsp custard powder         

1/2 tsp vanilla         

2 cups icing sugar         

2 tbsp milk, 

Chocolate Top         

4 oz (113 g) semisweet chocolate, chopped 

1 tbsp (15 mL) butter

Base

1)    In a bowl, stir together graham crumbs, coconut, cocoa powder and sugar.
2)    Sprinkle with egg and butter and stir until combined. 


3)    Press mixture into the bottom of a parchment lined baking dish.
4)     Bake at 350°F until firm ( about 10 minutes). Let cool in pan on rack. 



 Filling:

1)    In a bowl, beat together butter, custard powder and vanilla.
2)    Stir in icing sugar and milk (alternately) until smooth.
3)     Spread over cooled base and refrigerate until firm (about 1 hour).

 

Topping:

1)    In a double boiler, melt chocolate with butter.
2)    Spread over filling and refrigerate 30 minutes until chocolate is just soft. 


3)   Score the bars with a knife and refrigerate until chocolate is set (about 1 hour). 


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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Day 72: Cucumber & Cream Cheese Tea Sandwiches

Here is a very dainty, classic tea sandwich that is great for lunch as well as parties.

Ingredients
8 slices of white bread
1/2 of an English cucumber, very thinly sliced
1 cup plain cream cheese
1 cup of fresh cilantro leaves
freshly cracked pepper
1/4 cup butter

Directions
1) Spread 4 slices of bread with butter and the remaining slices with a generous amount of cream cheese.
2) Layer cucumber slices on top of the cream cheese.
3) Top cucumbers with a layer of cilantro.
4) Place buttered bread slices on top of each sandwich.
5) Carefully cut bread crusts from sandwiches then cut in half and arrange on a serving platter.


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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Day 71: Spicy Chicken Stir Fry






































Ingredients
2 - 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thinly sliced
6 carrots, sliced
1 head broccoli, cut into bite-sized pieces
3 small colourful peppers, cut into large pieces
3 stalks celery, sliced
1 bunch green onion, cut into 1/2" lengths
1 lb brown mushrooms, sliced
1 can sliced water chestnuts
1/2 cup low sodium teriyaki sauce
2 T soy sauce
1/4 cup sesame oil
2 tsp hot pepper sauce
1/4 cup chicken stock
1T cornstarch
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 cups prepared udon noodles

 Directions
1) Prepare the sauce first by combining teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, pepper sauce, chicken stock and cornstarch in a bowl.
2) In a large fry pan or wok, cook chicken breasts until no longer pink. Remove from pan and set aside. 3) Using the same pan, heat a bit of oil then add carrots, onions, mushrooms and broccoli and cook for   2 minutes.
4) Add 1/4 cup of water to pan, cover and let steam for 2 minutes.
5) Add garlic and the rest of the ingredients and cook for 2 - 3 minutes.
6) Add cooked chicken to the vegetables along with the sauce and cook for 1 - 2 minutes.
7) Serve on top of udon noodles. 


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Monday, March 11, 2013

Day 70: Pear Bellini

Here is a great drink that you can serve for brunch or sip on a warm afternoon. You could also make this non alcoholic by replacing the champagne with apple juice or lemonade.  The kids would love it and it would be a fun way for them to have more fruit.





































Ingredients
2 ripe pears, peeled and cored
1 cup crushed ice
1/2 cup meyer lemon juice
1 cup champagne
3 T sugar
mint leaves for garnish

Directions
1) Combine all ingredients in an electric blender and puree on high until smooth.
2) Pour into a glass and serve with a mint leaf.


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Sunday, March 10, 2013

Day 69: Chicken Salad Wraps

This one is for those days when you really don't feel like cooking but would like to make something at home that is quick and healthy.

Ingredients
6 naan bread rounds
1 small rotisserie chicken, deboned and cut into 1/2" pieces
1 medium tomato, diced
3 cups baby greens
1/2 cup caesar dressing

Directions
1) Arrange chicken on naan bread.
2) Add a generous amount of caesar dressing on top of chicken.
3) Top with tomatoes and greens.
4) Wrap with a piece of wax paper or parchment paper and serve.


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Saturday, March 9, 2013

Day 68: Blueberry Tarts

Here is a recipe that is great for parties or if you need a quick dessert.






































Ingredients
8 pre-made tart shells
2 cups blueberry yoghurt
1 cup fresh blueberries
8 fresh mint leaves

Directions
1) Add 1/4 cup of yoghurt to each of the tart shells.
2) Arrange blueberries on top of each tart.
3) Garnish with a mint leaf and serve immediately.




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Friday, March 8, 2013

Day 67: Brandy Snaps

Last night we made my daughter's infamous brandy snaps.  Today I am sharing her recipe with you.  They are light and crispy with a creamy centre.  A very chic and delicious dessert.

Ingredients
1/4 cup butter, cut into pieces
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup golden syrup
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp ground ginger
2/3 cup whipped cream
2 T icing sugar

Directions
1) Preheat oven 350F.
2) Combine butter, brown sugar and golden syrup in a saucepan and cook over medium heat for 2-3 minutes until butter is melted and sugar dissolves.
3) Add flour and ginger and stir until combined.
4) Set mixture aside to cool for 5 minutes.
5) On a parchment lined baking sheet, drop 1 teaspoon of batter into 4 corners allowing for generous spacing.
6) Bake for approximately 4-7 minutes.
7) Let cool for about 1minute then roll onto a 1/2" dowel or wooden spoon handle. Set aside to cool.
8) Remove brandy snaps and fill with whipped cream and serve immediately.


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Thursday, March 7, 2013

Day 66: Chicken & Squash Soup

Here is another soup recipe to add to your repertoire...


Ingredients 
2 chicken breasts
8 cups chicken stock
1 acorn squash, peeled and cut into 1" cubes
1 small red onion, coarsely chopped
6 carrots, peeled and sliced
6 red potatoes, peeled and cut
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2T dry thyme
salt and pepper
fresh chives for garnish

Directions
1) Season chicken breasts with thyme, salt and pepper.
2) Place chicken on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake in oven for approximately 35 minutes at 425F or until chicken is no longer pink. Set aside.
3) In a large stock pot, add chicken stock, onions, garlic, potatoes, squash and carrots and bring to boil.  Let simmer for 5 minutes.
4) Cut chicken breasts into 1/2" pieces.  Add to stock and let simmer for about 20 minutes.
5)  Taste for seasoning and serve in a bowl with fresh chives.
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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Day 65: Mixed Berry Salad with Balsamic Glaze

Here is a simple dessert recipe that is light and sweet and good for you!






































Ingredients
1/4 cup raspberries
1/4 cup blackberries
1/2 cup blueberries
1/4 cup balsamic gaze (recipe here)

Directions
1) Carefully mix berries and arrange in a bowl.
2) Pour balsamic glaze over berries and serve.
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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Day 64: French Onion Soup






































Ingredients

3 onions, sliced
1/2 stick of butter
1tsp salt
1tsp pepper
3 - 4 tablespoons of fresh thyme leaves
2 cups beef stock
1 cup chicken stock
1 baguette, diced
1 cup gruyere cheese, grated
splash of sherry

Directions

1. In a medium sauce pan, sautee onions in butter with salt and pepper until cooked down and dark brown( about 40 minutes).
2. Add fresh thyme, sherry, beef and chicken stock and simmer slowly for 1 hour.
3. Ladel into an oven-safe dish or ramkin.
4. Place 1 slice of bread on top and cover with cheese.
5. Broil in the oven until golden brown.



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Monday, March 4, 2013

Day 63: Mango Soup






































Ingredients


7 ripe mangos, peeled and sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1/2 white onion, diced
1 cup chicken stock
2 T rice vinegar
3 T sweet, hot chili sauce
1 tsp soy sauce
chives
1/4 cup cream

Directions

1. Put mangos, ginger, garlic and onion into a blender and puree.
2. Add stock, vinegar, curry and chili sauce to mango puree and blend.
3. Season to taste with soy sauce.
4. Pour into a dish and refridgerate
5. Serve chilled with a spoonful of cream and garnish with chives.


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Sunday, March 3, 2013

Day 62: Earl Grey Tea Latte

Today I thought I would share my favourite tea recipe.  I have tea every morning and most mornings I make this... my London Fog.






































Ingredients
Earl grey tea, bag or loose tea
hot water
1/4 cup milk, steamed
1 tsp honey, per cup of tea

Directions
1) Steep tea in hot water for about 3 minutes.
2) Pour tea into a cup filling 3/4 full.
3) Add honey to tea and stir.
4) Pour steamer milk into cup and serve.


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Saturday, March 2, 2013

Day 61: Caesar Salad


Ingredients
1 head romaine lettuce, chopped
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 T red wine vinegar
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp mustard 2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 egg
salt and pepper
1/2 cup parmesan, grated
1 cup croutons3 anchovy filets, finely chopped

Directions
1)In a small bowl combine oil, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic, lemon juice salt and pepper. Mix until combined.
2) Whisk egg into dressing until combined.
3) Add anchovies and mix well.
4) Toss lettuce with the sauce and add grated cheese and croutons.









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Friday, March 1, 2013

Day 60: Spicy Sausage & Tomato with Bow Tie Pasta

Today I am giving you a pasta recipe. Spicy Sausage & Tomato with Bow Tie Pasta.  Hope you like it!






































Ingredients
2 C spicy Italian sausage, casings removed
1 10 oz cans tomato sauce
3 sun dried tomatoes (chopped)
3 T fresh basil
2 T fresh oregano
1 T fresh parsley
4 cloves garlic
1 T olive oil
1 oz pancetta (finely chopped)
2 shallots (chopped)
1/2 cup red wine
Salt and pepper  to taste
Freshly grated parmesan cheese

Directions
1) In the bottom of a large pot sauté shallots and garlic in olive oil until soft. 
2) Add sausage and pancetta and cook on high until meat is brown.
3) Add wine and bring to boil for 2-4 minutes.
5) Add tomato sauce and bring to a boil.
6) Add sun dried tomatoes, herbs and spices and simmer until thick. (Approximately 1 hour)
7) Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.
8) Serve with some freshly grated parmesan and fresh parsley.
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