Month: September 2013

Raisin Cinnamon Oatmeal Bread in the Bread Machine

Raisin Cinnamon Oatmeal Bread in the Bread Machine

Raisin oatmeal bread with peanut butter is a quick and nutritious way to start your morning (unless of course you are allergic to peanuts).  I have an ancient bread machine I got on points back and I haul it out every once in a while…

Dahlia Bakery Coconut Pastry Cream with Graham Cracker and Almond Crust

Dahlia Bakery Coconut Pastry Cream with Graham Cracker and Almond Crust

I had left over coconut milk from something or other that I needed to use up so I tried out the coconut pastry cream recipe from the Triple Coconut Cream Pie recipe in Tom Douglas’ Dahlia Bakery Cookbook. I cheated a bit…didn’t have any vanilla…

Vegetarian Lasagne with Zucchini and Kale (aka La, La, La, Lasagne)

Vegetarian Lasagne with Zucchini and Kale (aka La, La, La, Lasagne)

With or without meat, lasagne is a healthy and filling meal. Add in layers of vegetables and it packs a tasty and nutritious punch.

Ingredients:

2 medium zucchini (halved and cut in 1/4″ slices)
6 sheets of Duso’s fresh lasagne pasta noodles (or lasagna noodles of your choice). If you use fresh pasta you don’t have to muck about cooking noodles (just make sure your tomato sauce is a little on the thin side so the noodles will cook through).
2 c. ricotta (one recipe of homemade ricotta will do it)
1/4 c. feta cheese crumbled
3 Tbsp parmesan
2 eggs
1 650 mL jar of pasta sauce (I like President’s Choice fire roasted tomato or primavera)
1 bunch kale (washed, centre stem removed and rough chopped)
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic (peeled and pressed)
1 340 g package of mozzarella cheese, grated
Extra parmesan for sprinkling.

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Zucchini layer: Cut the zucchini in half and then slice into 1/4″ slices. Put in a pie plate, cover with plastic wrap, poke a few steam holes and pop it in the microwave for 4 minutes. Let stand until cool.

Kale layer: Heat olive oil in a large pan, put the garlic cloves through a garlic press (or chop fine) and add to the pan. Add the kale and saute 5-7 minutes until kale is wilted. Add fresh ground pepper and salt to taste. If you don’t like kale you could use chard or spinach.

Ricotta layer: Beat 2 eggs into the ricotta and stir in the crumbled feta, add 3 Tbsp parmesan and a grinding of fresh pepper plus a tsp of dried basil. Mix well.

In a 2 quart baking dish ayer the lasagne as follows:

Put a thin layer of tomato sauce to coat the bottom the dish.
Layer of half the kale
Layer of half the zucchini
Noodle layer
Press down to compact.
Tomato sauce
Other half of kale
Half the ricotta mixture
Noodle layer
Tomato sauce
Other half zucchini
Other half ricotta
Noodle layer
Last of the sauce
Top with 2 c. of mozzarella and a sprinkling of parmesan

Bake for 45 minutes. For easier cutting let the lasagne stand for at least 30 minutes before serving to allow the noodles to absorb any excess liquid.  This is even better on day two.

Serves 6.

 

Quinoa and Spinach Salad with Chickpeas and Lentils

Quinoa and Spinach Salad with Chickpeas and Lentils

The Lost + Found Cafe makes a delicious quinoa and spinach salad and this is my attempt to replicate it at home. Ingredients: 1 bunch baby spinach washed and spun 1 c. quinoa cooked and cooled* 1 can chickpeas rinsed and drained 1 can lentils…

Ricotta Cheese…Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy

Ricotta Cheese…Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy

Ricotta cheese is great for making homemade lasagna, adding umph to a sandwich or wrap or just eating on crackers. I noticed several recipes on the web that all received 5 stars. Several had heavy cream as an ingredient but I found one from The…

605 Collective…seeks to defy gravity in NYC

605 Collective…seeks to defy gravity in NYC

605 Collective is an amazing Vancouver-based contemporary dance company. They are currently fundraising to do a NYC tour. Click HERE to view the video on their Indiegogo page and you’ll see what I mean about amazing.

I first had the privilege of meeting Lisa Gelley-Martin (one of 605’s founders and second from the left busily defying gravity) when my daughter was enrolled in her contemporary dance class at Dance Co here in Vancouver. That was 3 (er maybe 4) years ago now and every year she has choreographed a contemporary duo for my daughter Lindsay and her fellow Dance Co classmate Kylie. Aside from being a superb dance instructor, every year her duos have won Judge’s Awards at competition and placed. This past year Lisa choreographed a contemporary group number that just blew me away with it’s complexity and sophistication. Amazing work and she and her fellow dancers at 605 are not only uber humble but their talent and creativity are very deserving of our support. If you can help. Please do.

In the meantime you can give them some love on Facebook: Click Here or visit their blog: Click here too.

 

Banana, Blueberry, Buttermilk Muffins (aka 3B Muffins)

Banana, Blueberry, Buttermilk Muffins (aka 3B Muffins)

My freezer had a good sized banana graveyard and some frozen blueberries I had painstakingly frozen on trays. In addition I had  some soon-to-expire buttermilk in the fridge so it was time to take action. The result are these moist and delicious banana, blueberry, buttermilk…

Homemade Nutella and Homemade Peanut Butter

Homemade Nutella and Homemade Peanut Butter

Nutella (aka chocolate hazlenut spread) is a big hit at my house. We all love it but I don’t love some of the ingredients so I went looking for a homemade alternative. I ended up settling on a combination of Elsie + Emma’s A Beautiful…

Crepes aka Mummu’s Finnish Skinny Pancakes

Crepes aka Mummu’s Finnish Skinny Pancakes

My Mom makes excellent crepes. Light, crispy edges and just a hit of cinnamon. Warning: the “skinny” has nothing to do with calories because they need butter to make them tender. Don’t use margarine…please just don’t. The secret to these delicious crepes is a smooth batter, a good crepe pan (I use an 8″ French cast iron pan…it’s worth the money) and a skinny spatula. Oh and cooking them in a decent amount of butter so they don’t stick. Do not cook these in margarine or use that spray gunk…they will taste like dreck and no one wants to eat dreck for breakfast.

Ingredients

3 eggs
2 1/2 c. milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 c. flour
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
3 Tbsp melted butter (I use salted so there is no need to add extra salt)

Extra butter for frying the crepes.

Method

Preheat your oven and turn off (you will keep the crepes in here as you cook them). Melt the 3 Tbsps of butter in your crepe pan and let cool. Whisk the eggs together with 1 cup of the milk. Add the flour gradually and whisk until you have a smooth batter. Add the brown sugar and cinnamon and whisk again. Add the vanilla to the remaining 1 1/2 cup milk. Whisk the milk and vanilla mixture in to the batter and then whisk in the melted butter. Make sure your batter has no lumps. Lumps are verboten!

Heat about a teaspoon of butter in your crepe pan (aim for a medium heat). Pour a scant 1/2 cup of batter in your pan and swirl so you get a nice thin crepe. Let it cook until it starts to become opaque and you get some steam pockets (you just have to figure this out for yourself). Flip and cook the other side until lightly browned. The crepe below has been flipped once.

Crepe

Flip the creme in half and then in quarters and remove to a pie plate and pop it into your warm oven. Repeat until all the batter is gone.

You can serve these any way you like but my kids like to open them flat dust them with cinnamon sugar and roll them. You could spread them with fruit compote, Nutella, or do up a ricotta filling with a bit of sugar and lemon. Or, if you are lucky enough to have real maple syrup (just say NO to that gross fake stuff) then drizzle that on top.

 

Makes about 12 crepes.

Save

Save

Warm Steak Salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette

Warm Steak Salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette

My son the carnivore is heading off to boarding school on Tuesday so I thought this warm steak salad would be a good way to feed him a steak and get some extra veggies into him…also since my daughter “the mostly vegetarian” had already eaten…