Friday, November 18, 2016

#TastyParTEA: Earl Grey Waffles

I agreed to take part in an event that was celebrating all things tea.  And I enjoy tea...but usually black with a little sugar in winter, or iced with lemon and sugar in summer.  And frankly, orange pekoe is about as exciting as we get in my purchasing around here.
But despite the fact that I am not a tea snob, I do know what a good cuppa tastes like.  Each year for Christmas, one of the gifts that I buy my mother is the Little Black Tea Collection from Steeped, which includes the most wonderful Earl Grey known as Earl Grey de la Creme.  And it is.  Smoky, creamy and with the most delicious finish.  It's a great tea.
Earl Grey tea is tea flavoured with oil of bergamot.  It is used to flavour baked goods, sauces and chocolates.  When I looked for a recipe featuring tea, I started at the Steeped website.  I saw this, and was sold.
I present to you now Earl Grey Waffles:

Thursday, November 17, 2016

#TastyParTEA: The Giveaway!

I signed up for another event.  But this one is totally in line with fall.  As the days get shorter and colder, I am more wont than in summer to drink tea.  And this event is all about the good stuff.

A baker's dozen bloggers have come together to share different recipes that use tea during the month of November. Whether you're a fan of sweet or savory #TastyParTEA's creations will make your mouth water.

See all the posts on our Facebook page, check out the pins on our Pinterest board, or follow the conversation on social media with hashtag #TastyParTEA.

We Are the #TastyParTEA Bloggers...
listed alphabetically by blog name

Our Blog Tour Schedule...

The Giveaway...
Our generous sponsors have contributed prizes for this event.
The giveaway will begin on November 12th and end on November 21st
and is open to US residents only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Our Sponsors*...
and how you can find them around the internet

Charles Viancin
on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Instagram, on Pinterest

The Republic of Tea
on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Pinterest, on Instagram

*Disclosure: Bloggers received complimentary products from sponsors for the creation of this event. This is a sponsored post that contains affiliate links.
Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are our own.*

Monday, November 7, 2016

#SecretRecipeClub: Cinnamon Roll Muffins

It's time for another edition of Group A's reveal for the Secret Recipe Club!  Actually, it's a rather sad occasion as this will be the final reveal day for Group A.  Sarah E has decided to send us out on a high note, and the club will be folding.  I've had almost 3 wonderful years searching other blogs for a recipe to make and share.  It's been exciting to see what people think worth sharing from my own little corner of the internet.  I'll need to find a new challenge.
So, this time when I went looking for my last recipe with the club, I decided I had to stick with what I do best - breakfast carbs.
My monthly email sent me off to peruse Sights, Bits and Bites.  Marla is relatively new to the kitchen, and says she works in the smallest kitchen known to mankind.  I also did that until recently.  She loves cats, but currently has a boyfriend and a pet hamster.  I don't think I recommend having the hamster and cats simultaneously, but cats are a lovely way to pass the time.
While looking through Marla's recipes, I came across a few things to consider:  Freezer Breakfast Burritos looked easy and yummy, as did Lasagna Soup, which needs to make an appearance on my Sunday night supper table (and in my lunch) soon.  But carbs as always screamed my name.  Like my last reveal, this recipe is somewhat of a portion controlled one.  But no matter.  Once can always eat 2.
I present to you now Sights, Bits and Bites' Cinnamon Roll Muffins:

Monday, October 31, 2016

#SRC Bonus Post: Monkey Bread Muffins

I haven't been a very good blogger recently.  I have, however, managed to keep up with my Secret Recipe Club posts if nothing else.  I love being given a reason to explore someone else's blog and make a recipe.  Sometimes, it's a challenge to make something that I've always wanted to try.  Sometimes, I make something that just sounds way too good.
Always, I procrastinate.
This month, with 5 Mondays, our fearless leader Sarah put out the call for a special reveal day of fall dishes.  I was thrilled to be assigned April's blog over at Home Sweet Homestead.  April is a wife and monther who is a Flexitarian after the onset of adult allergies and food intolerances.  I loved going through her recipes and saw many things that interested me including these Chocolate Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies  and this Peanut Butter Cheesecake Dip.  Apparently, peanut butter makes me think fall.
Unfortunately, I haven't made either yet.  With time running short, I whipped up a breakfast treat with lots of cinnamon.  It's not pumpkin, but it is delicious.  And monkey bread is always fun.  Who doesn't love monkey bread?
I do, obviously.  I present to you now Home Sweet Homestead's Monkey Bread Muffins:

Monday, October 3, 2016

Secret Recipe Club: Sopa de Arroz

We are in the midst of a kitchen renovation.  The obvious question is to ask why I would do something so asinine as to say that I would participate in Secret Recipe Club when I don't have a kitchen.  The good news is I made this just before the renovation started.  Now, I'm looking forward to it being over so I can start cooking again.
This month, I was thrilled to be assigned and excuse to spend some time in La Cocina de Leslie!  My very first month with SRC, Leslie made my Peanut Butter Crunch Cake.  I was so excited to have a chance to peruse Leslie's blog and make some good, authentic Mexican food.
Leslie lives in Mexico with her husband and 4 children.  She's even written a cookbook called Taqueria Tacos that is being released on my birthday.  J and I are both huge fans of Mexican food.  We had our first date at Mi Hacienda, a Mexican restaurant in Toledo, and that's where he proposed as well!  I wanted to make Leslie's Shredded Chicken Tacos de Mole because it reminded me greatly of my favourite Chicken Enchiladas Poblanas from Mi Hacienda, but I couldn't find the mole paste, and a mole sauce was more work that I was up for.  (But if you are up for the work, Leslie has options for homemade mole sauce!)
Enter this recipe.  I was making a shredded pork in the crockpot to mix with black beans and Mexican rice to make burritos so that I would have things in the freezer for eating during the reno.  I needed a good recipe for Mexican rice.  Leslie's recipe from her mother in law doesn't disappoint.
I present to you now from La Cocina de Leslie, Sopa de Arroz (Mexican Rice):

Monday, September 5, 2016

#Secret Recipe Club: Peanut Butter Banana Bagels

It's time for another episode of the regular Secret Recipe Club!  Once a month, a group of bloggers get together, are given another blog to peruse in secret, choose a recipe and make something from their assigned blog.  I so enjoy doing this every month, and look forward to seeing whose blog I will be looking through for something delicious.
This month, I was thrilled to be paired with Erin of the The Spiffy Cookie.  I've enjoyed working with Erin in the past on multiblogger events, and enjoy drooling over her pictures of food on Instagram.  Erin, like myself, isn't a fan of mushrooms; but she does love all things peanut butter and chocolate (also like myself) and bakes...a lot.  How could I not make something peanut buttery after looking through her blog?
I seem to be on a breakfast kick at the moment, so I considered her Pumpkin Pecan Waffles and even something somewhat healthy with her Carrot Cake Oatmeal, but then I found this.
I have been intrigued by recipes containing PB2, but have never tried it.  I also decided to challenge myself and make something that I hadn't made successfully before:  bagels.  With bananas in the freezer, I was ready to go!
I present to you now The Spiffy Cookie's Peanut Butter Banana Bagels:

Monday, August 29, 2016

#SRC Bonus: Lunch Lady Brownies

Today is my first day back at work after being off for the summer.
I'm not exactly sure how I feel about this, seeing as it's my 7th school in the past 10 years.  While there are no students until next week after Labour Day, I need to finish unpacking and get my head around what is to come.  For me, this is not a great thing.
What is good, however, is that there are 5 Mondays in August, and we're celebrating with a special edition of The Secret Recipe Club that's all about back to school.  What's even more fun about this reveal day is that it's cross-group, so I'm not paired with someone in my regular group A for this week.  Next week, I'll be back with my Group A on Monday's reveal.
There are so many options when you consider back to school.  Around here, it means soups that I can take for lunch, or something I can pull out of my freezer for a quick meal, or something that I can make for a hearty breakfast.  I had so much fun looking through Ashley's blog, Cheese Curd in Paradise for something that might fit one of these catagories, and I wasn't disappointed.
Ashley had a ton of things that I pinned while browsing, including these Strawberry Cream Muffins to use up the strawberries that came in my produce box this week; I also thought about this Chicken Bacon Ranch Tot Casserole because come on...all in one dish?  Sign me up!
I finally opted for a dessert that can easily be frozen, and is even nut free, so totally work-takeable (as opposed to my regular SRC choice for next week).  The name even screams school - even though I work in an elementary school and there's no cafeteria.
I present to you now a Cheese Curd in Paradise's Lunch Lady Brownies:

Friday, August 12, 2016

Breakfast: Chocolate Zucchini Chocolate Chip Waffles

After last summer's fun with my friend's waffle iron, I kept thinking I should buy one of my own.  I thought about it for a whole year (which I am wont to do), and finally picked one up on the cheap at Kohl's when J and I went to celebrate a friend's 50th birthday in Toledo.
But what to make first?  I have an absolute pile of waffle recipes pinned to my Breakfast board on Pinterest.  There's pumpkin, and snickerdoodle, and gingerbread...but I was looking for wow factor for the first waffles from the new toy.
I started searching again for something with wow factor, that would use things in my fridge.  I'm pretty sure I picked it with this recipe. Seeing as I had buttermilk leftover and a couple of zucchini from our Good Food Boxes, this was a no brainer.  Seeing as there was cocoa and chocolate chips involved, I'd found my wow factor.
Even better?  This made enough for 2 brunches the day of and more for the freezer for later.  You know, when I want a bit of a day brightener.  That can always be achieved through chocolate chips for breakfast.
I present to you now The Candid Appetite's Chocolate Zucchini Chocolate Chip Waffles:

Monday, August 8, 2016

Freezer Friendly: Walnut Zucchini Muffins

Despite the fact that as I write this we haven't been on vacation yet (Friday's coming!), I've started planning for my Back to School cooking extravaganza.
Three years ago, I discovered the genius of freezer meals.  After buying a Taste of Home freezer magazine, I tried cooking and freezing meals that would make my life easier upon my return to work.  It totally does make my life easier.  We eat at home during a stressful time with the startup of school and being away weekends for football.  I've started my lists and my inventory of the deep freeze so that we have some more healthy choices than the nearest restaurant.
To that end, I'm stocking not only dinners but breakfasts as well.  I need something that can be quick, or on the go; but not just peanut butter toast when I can't think of anything else.  My Christmas present from last year has been a help:  a Hamilton Beach breakfast sandwich maker that we pull out maybe once a week.  I also try and stock bagels, and often have cooked breakfast sausage links so I can make quick scrambled egg wraps.  I also enjoy muffins from time to time.
My mother makes lots of different muffins that are delicious, and if you look at my index I make lots of different flavours too,  Muffins freeze well, are portable, and can use up things that are lurking in your produce drawer.
Speaking of produce, if you and I are friends on Facebook, I've been posting pictures of my Good Food Boxes this summer from The Stand in Burford.  J and I have eaten more fresh fruits and vegetables for an incredible price because of these boxes!  We've had things like this:

 Every week, there is a head of romaine lettuce, and a field tomato.  The rest is seasonal, so we've had carrots, new dug potatoes, garlic, corn, green onions, peppers of all colours, field and hot house cucumbers, green and yellow beans, cherry tomatoes, garlic scapes, red onions, and zucchini.  We've been picking up the box and then meal planning to use as much as possible from the box.
 Fruit-wise, we've had tons of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, cherries, peaches, and yellow plums.  J eats the blueberries.  The rest are left up to me.
I've been freezing what we can't eat (mainly strawberries and beans), and knowing that in winter we will have lots of things to choose from out of the excess of our bounty from the summer.

But there are many things that we get that can't be frozen.  And vegetables like zucchini need to be made into another form to be frozen.
When I saw this recipe in my Taste of Home freezer magazine, it was like it was meant to be.
I present to you now Harriet Stichter from Milford, Illinois' Walnut Zucchini Muffins:

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Revenge of the Magazine Challenge: Grilled Pizza with Asparagus and Sundried Tomatoes

When we moved, one of the things we talked about was the fact that we might grill more, because the deck is off the open concept kitchen/dining room.  As opposed to our last house, where I had to walk around through the family room to the far end of the house to retrace my steps outside to get to the grill, this is just open the door and step out.
We've taken to grilling a lot.
Despite the fact that we don't often sit outside to eat because of the trains (We have 2 backyards between our deck and the tracks), we carry in things from the grill to eat at the dining room table.  And seeing as there's more to life than burgers, I'm always on the lookout for fun new things to try cooking over propane.
When we renovated the last kitchen, we discovered that you could make pizza directly on the grill.  When I saw this recipe in the June 2008 issue of Everyday Food, I knew I wanted to give it a try.  I was right.  It was worth it.  The was a fantastic change of pace on a Saturday night with a glass of cold white wine.
I present to you now from the June 2008 issue of Everyday Food, Grilled Pizza with Asparagus and Sundried Tomatoes:

Monday, August 1, 2016

SRC: Lemongrass Ginger Pancakes

It's time again for the Secret Recipe Club!  What's that, you ask?  Well, it's a group of food bloggers who are all assigned another blog from the group (in secret, hence the name) and then we all reveal on the same day at the same time.  Fun, right?  I enjoy getting my assignment every month and finding something to make from a blog that I don't know a whole lot about.
This month is no exception.  I was assigned the blog Crazed Mom, written by Nicole.  Nicole is a mom of 5 teenagers, and I am exhausted just thinking about that.  She's a writer, and she makes some delicious looking and sounding food.
I have to admit, when I started looking at her blog, I didn't get past her Breakfast offerings.  As the owner of a new waffle iron, I'm all about waffle recipes right now.  I eyed these Blueberry Lemon Ricotta Pancakes, because I have ricotta needing to be used in my fridge and blueberries right now; but Nicole made these for an SRC reveal.  I also really want to make these Pumpkin Spice Latte Doughnuts, but I would need a doughnut baking pan...and I'm still playing with my waffle iron.  Then I found something that totally caught my attention.
As some of my friends on Facebook know, I was literally giving away some of my Gourmet Garden stir in paste herb tubes from past blogging events.  I love their products (just ask, and I'll tell you!), but there are some that I've never known what to do Lemongrass.  It's intimidating looking at the store, and I've never used it.  But I have 3 tubes of it in my freezer.  I saw the picture in the index with the Gourmet Garden tubes, and saw that this would use up (albeit a small amount) of my Lemongrass stash, and I was in!  Plus, the leftovers are freezable, as we start the grind towards school.  I'm starting my freezer cooking to make the fall easier.  J and I both enjoyed these for breakfast, and they'll be great out of the toaster with maple syrup this fall too,
I present to you now Crazed Mom's Lemongrass Ginger Pancakes:

Thursday, July 28, 2016

#BookClubCookbookCC: Lemon Chicken and Orzo

It's the last month of the #BookClubCookbookCC project!  I've so enjoyed working with the other bloggers and especially Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla who spearheaded this project!  This month, Camilla hosted, and she invited us to make Greek food and read Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres.

Once again, I haven't read the book.  For whatever reason, there's been a run on the copy at my local library.  I am currently third on the waiting list.  I was fifth when I went to reserve the book.  But I can make Greek inspired food.  We love Greek food.
I'm always looking for new 1 pot meals that go together fast and are delicious.  This one fits the bill.  J and I loved it.  It also comes from one of my favourite sources for recipes, Budget Bytes.  With lemon and feta cheese, it's reminiscent of all the great flavours of Greek food.
I present to you now from Budget Bytes Lemon Pepper Chicken with Orzo:

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Grillmistress: Grilled Spatchcocked Chicken

Remember in January when I Spatchcocked a chicken and roasted it in the oven?  Well, at that time, I bought a couple of whole chickens and froze them for later.
Later finally arrived when we were cleaning out the freezer for the move.
While I was looking for something to do with a whole chicken, I came across this recipe with an interesting marinade that would use the pastes provided to me from Garden Gourmet.  A win all the way around as I tried to clean out my freezer and prepare for the move.
Now I need to buy another whole chicken so I can do this again.
I present to you now from Martha Stewart Grilled Spatchcocked Chicken:

Monday, July 25, 2016

Dessert to Share: Rhubarb Custard Pie

It's been a while, and rhubarb season is, for all intents and purposes, over.
But this is too good a pie not to share.  It's no secret I love lemon.  That's because you can get lemons year round.  As opposed to rhubarb, which has a tiny window of opportunity and if you're like me you need to know somebody to get it from because there's no way I'm paying for what is essentially a weed.
Call it what you like, rhubarb is a fantastic flavour - blisteringly sour and begging for sugar.  My aunt used to have a red stalked variety that was gorgeous when it was cooked down (my favourite way to eat it...still warm....over ice cream).  But my aunt lives a long way away, and my source for rhubarb moved into a smaller house.
Fast forward to this June, where we were at a friend's for dinner, and she mentioned that I was welcome to go and get some rhubarb from the farm.  She gave me directions, and I didn't go.  Then she brought a bag of rhubarb to me. I chopped some for cooking and eating this winter, took some more and made a batch of delicious muffins, and turned the rest into this pie with a pie crust I found in the bottom of the freezer.
I called my mom looking for my grandmother's recipe.  It's apparently lost.  My mother's comment was she was looking too, and I didn't want the recipe she'd made last.  So I turned to the source of all recipe knowledge, Pinterest.
I present to you now from Creative Bite, Rhubarb Custard Pie:

Monday, July 18, 2016

#GuacSquad12: Bacon Ranch Guacamole

Remember when I posted last week that #GuacSquad12 was coming, and that I would be posting my recipe soon?
That day has come.
My knowledge of guacamole is fairly limited.  I'd never made it before.  But as with many recipes, I searched Pinterest, and added bacon.  Because frankly, everything's better with bacon, is it not?

Read the details of the event (and the fabulous giveaway.  Make sure you enter!) below, and then follow the jump to see the great guac I made!

A dozen bloggers have come together to share fourteen different guacamole recipes during the month of July. Whether you're a guacamole purist - think avocado, cilantro and lime - or you get a little more creative - think of some fabulous fold-ins such as pineapple or olives - the #GuacSquad12's creations will make your mouth water.

Want to see what the other bloggers have created?  Check out all the great guacamoles here.

Here's are the GuacSquad Bloggers...
listed alphabetically by blog name

Here's the blog tour schedule...

Here are Our Sponsors*...
and how you can find them around the internet

on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Instagram, on Pinterest

Gourmet Garden Herbs & Spices
on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Pinterest, on Instagram, on Google+

Melissa's Produce
on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Pinterest, on Instagram

Here are Our Prizes...
We are giving away a dozen - yes, twelve! - Guac-Lock™s from Casabella.

And we have an amazing prize package from Gourmet Garden Herbs & Spices that includes their entire collection of stir in pastes and their lightly dried herbs.

The Giveaway...
Our generous sponsors have contributed prizes for this event. The giveaway runs from July 8th through July 25th when we will select thirteen winners who will be notified by email. The first twelve winners will receive the Guac-Lock™ by Casabella; the thirteenth winner will receive a generous prize package from Gourmet Garden Herbs & Spices. No purchase necessary. Winners will have 48 hours to reply with contact information or new winner will be chosen. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Disclosure: Bloggers received complimentary products from sponsors for the creation of this event. This is a sponsored post that contains affiliate links.
Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are our own.*

Friday, July 8, 2016

#GuacSquad12: The Scoop

I signed up for another blogging event.
Call me crazy, but it's summer, and that means I have time for this sort of thing...right?  I should hope so.
This time, it's all about something I've never made before, and don't eat much of:  guacamole.  The green dip has always been okay, but not something that I've raved about.  However, when the call went out for bloggers to try a new product by Casabella, and to make guacamole, I was in.
Here's what you need to know:

It's summertime! And that means ripe avocados and lots and lots of guacamole. Do you adore guacamole? If so, then #GuacSquad12 - a multi-day, multi-blogger event - is for you. Follow the conversation on social media with our event hashtag and visit the participating bloggers for some amazing twists on guac.

A dozen bloggers have come together to share fourteen different guacamole recipes during the month of July. Whether you're a guacamole purist - think avocado, cilantro and lime - or you get a little more creative - think of some fabulous fold-ins such as pineapple or olives - the #GuacSquad12's creations will make your mouth water.

Here's are the GuacSquad Bloggers...
listed alphabetically by blog name

Here's the blog tour schedule...

Join Us On Twitter...
Join us for a live Twitter chat on Saturday, July 16th at 7am Pacific/10am Eastern. We'll be talking guac for an hour!

Here are Our Sponsors*...
and how you can find them around the internet

on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Instagram, on Pinterest

Gourmet Garden Herbs & Spices
on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Pinterest, on Instagram, on Google+

Melissa's Produce
on the web, on Twitter, on Facebook, on Pinterest, on Instagram

Here are Our Prizes...
We are giving away a dozen - yes, twelve! - Guac-Lock™s from Casabella.

And we have an amazing prize package from Gourmet Garden Herbs & Spices that includes their entire collection of stir in pastes and their lightly dried herbs.

The Giveaway...
Our generous sponsors have contributed prizes for this event. The giveaway runs from July 8th through July 25th when we will select thirteen winners who will be notified by email. The first twelve winners will receive the Guac-Lock™ by Casabella; the thirteenth winner will receive a generous prize package from Gourmet Garden Herbs & Spices. No purchase necessary. Winners will have 48 hours to reply with contact information or new winner will be chosen. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Disclosure: Bloggers received complimentary products from sponsors for the creation of this event. This is a sponsored post that contains affiliate links.
Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are our own.*

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

#BookClubCookbookCC: Chocolat Roundup and Pie!

It's been a month since I posted the invitation to make hot chocolate, and read Joanne Harris' book, Chocolat.  I'm picking the book up today from the library.
It's been a crazy month here, where we moved, school ended, I packed and moved to a new school, and I have quickly slipped into the entropy that invariably arrives with the first week of summer vacation.
But never fear!  The members of the Book Club Cookbook Cooking Crew have a variety of chocolate recipes for you to enjoy!

Renee from Tortillas and Honey made Florentines.  I've never eaten them, or heard of them, but now I want to make them!  This almond cookie coated with chocolate looks amazing.  I would add the orange zest.

Andrea at Adventures in All Things Food made gorgeous Pots de Creme.  My favourite chocolate French masterpiece is Mousse au Chocolat, but this would probably be a close second...along with any other way I can think of to use chocolate!

Erin at the Spiffy Cookie decided against sweating and drinking, and turned her hot chocolate into Hot Chocolate Rice Krispie Treats.  These would be perfect for your next BBQ...or Tuesday...when you're by yourself and have a need for sugar.

Emily at Life on Food decided to marry 2 of my favourite flavours:  peanut butter and chocolate into these cute little Chocolate Peanut Butter Graham Cracker Sandwiches.  Obviously, these are to be dunked in the hot chocolate so we end up on a chocolate high for the rest of the day!  Count me in!

Sarah of the Pajama Chef also chose a no-sweat, no-bake recipe featuring white chocolate:  Avalanche Cookies. I now want these too with their feature of mini marshmallows and peanut butter.  So many cookies.  So little time.

Finally, Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm made a beautiful Black and White Cake.  I love cake.  There aren't enough reasons to make or eat it, honestly.

But what did I make?  My own favourite dessert, or did I guess someone else's as Vianne would do?  I didn't really guess.  I made J's favourite.  I present to you now from the April 2008 issue of Everyday Food, Chocolate Merinuge Pie:

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

#BookClubCookbookCC: Allons-y a la France!

It's time for a new month of the #BookClubCookbookCC!  Thanks to our leader, Camilla from Culinary Adventures with Camilla, I'm so excited to be hosting again.  I'm even more excited that we're giving away not one but two copies of the cookbook!  But let's start at the beginning.
This month, I invite you to join us and read Joanne Harris' Chocolat.

I've seen the film...but I haven't finished the book yet.  After report cards and our move (which is complete...not that I can find anything).  The movie is wonderful.  I don't see how the book won't be too.
Read it, and make Hot Cocoa, totally not the drink for this time of year, except maybe breakfast.  But this would be delicious.  Homemade hot cocoa is always the best.  Read, make a recipe, and enter the giveaway.  It really is that simple.  Everything you need to know is after the jump.
I present to you now from the Book Club Cookbook by Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp, Hot Cocoa:

Monday, June 6, 2016

#SecretRecipeClub: Lemon Blueberry Muffins

It's time for the Secret Recipe Club!  I once again turned to carbs for a quick snack that used up things in my fridge and freezer.
Today's post is also celebrating our move to the new house.  While I was excited (and still am), it's finally sinking in that I'm losing my kitchen that we renovated a couple of years ago.  No more super deep sink and crazy amount of cabinet space.  But no matter.  We already are hatching plans to renovate.  So let's celebrate the last SRC in my old kitchen, shall we?
This month, I was sent to explore Lori's blog over at Lori's Culinary Creations.  Lori lives in Utah with a menagerie of pets.  She had tons of delicious things to choose from, like Hamburger Pasta Casserole and a Buffalo Chicken Quinoa Skillet but I was drawn to a breakfast food that used up things in my freezer.  Yes, once again I chose to make carbs.  But what a way to go!
I present to you now from Lori's Culinary Creations, Lemon Blueberry Muffins:

Monday, May 30, 2016

#SRC Bonus Post: Moist Chocolate Cake

With 5 Mondays in the month, we're having an extra edition of the Secret Recipe Club!  It's all about BBQs, Picnics and Potlucks. Normally, I do a reveal with the other members of Group A the first Monday of the month (that's coming up next week!).  But with the fifth Monday, our intrepid leader Sarah put out the call for a special event - one where you can be paired with anyone else from the club.  Fun, right?  We always have a few BBQs and so on to go to in the summer, so I thought it sounded like a great opportunity to go looking for something new and different.
I should pause here to say that right now my house is a shambles.  Next Monday J and I are moving.  The fact that I signed up to do this and my regular reveal day means that I just might be certifiable.  But whatever.
I was happy to be paired with a blog that was totally new to me:  Loving Life.  Kirstin is a wife and mom who blogs about food, home, and life.  She lives in the Pacific Northwest, a place I have visited once but know very little about.
I enjoyed going through her recipes, knowing I needed a dessert for my Home Church BBQ.  What I discovered?  She doesn't blog about dessert like I do...and many of them are SRC recipes (I make a lot of desserts for SRC too), but never mind.  She had lots of yummy looking things, like Blackberry Balsamic Salmon and Lasagna Bread as well as the Candied Spiced Chickpeas that I bought the chickpeas to make and never got that far.  But no matter.  I did find a dessert, and a delicious one at that.
I present to you now Loving Life's Moist Chocolate Cake:

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Revenge of the Magazine Challenge: Roasted Chicken Fajita Tostadas

It's Cinco de Mayo today.  I know nothing about this holiday, but think it might have something to do with Mexican Independence.  What I do know is that it's an excuse to drink margaritas and eat Mexican-inspired food according to the interwebs.  For food bloggers, this also means that we post Mexican-inspired food posts.
I can get down with that.
The April 2008 issue of Everyday Food had an article on Lighter Tex-Mex favourites.  I marked 3 of the recipes as things I want to make (these tostadas, fish tacos and stuffed poblano peppers).  Based on the results from this recipe, the others will be delicious too.
I present to you now from the April 2008 issue of Everyday Food, Roasted Chicken Fajita Tostadas:

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

#BookClubCookbookCC: Pearl Earring Roundup and Breakfast!

It's been a month since I issued the invitation to join the #BookClubCookbookCC and read Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier before making Griet's Vegetable Soup or something else inspired by the book.
I'm going to start with what others made before talking about my own literal dish that J and I ate on a Saturday morning while listening to Stuart McLean and the Vinyl Cafe.
Let's see what the crew made, shall we?

Andrea from Adventures in All Things Food made a Rainy Day Vegetable Soup with the vegetables that she could find...but I don't think I'd like turnip in my soup.  Mini red skinned potatoes are much more appealing!

Likewise, Ashley of Cheese Curd in Paradise opted to make a Quick Vegetable Soup for a weeknight dinner.  With tomatoes, this looks a lot like a soup that people in this house would enjoy!

Emily from Life On Food made the soup from the cookbook.  Doesn't it look delicious?  With a Spring that doesn't seem to be warming up, soup is still in regular rotation here.  Good way to chase away the chill.
Finally, Wendy from A Day in the Life on the Farm made a Colour Your Palate Soup with a pun on the painter's palatte and the zinginess that this soup would bring to your own tasting palate.
Renee at Tortillas and Honey decided to take inspiration from the book, and make a dinner like one described in the book with her Herbed Roast Chicken with Potatoes and Parsnips.  I love roasted parsnips.  This looks lovely.
Likewise, Camilla from Culinary Adventures with Camilla took inspiration from Griet's relationship with the butcher's son and made Lamskoteletten op zijn oud-Hollands (Lamb chops old-Dutch style.  I love lamb, and never cook it.  Now I'm hungry.
Finally, Erin of the Spiffy Cookie thought outside the box, and took the vegetables and bacon of the soup and made a spring-like Bacon and Vegetable Pizza.

But what did I do, you ask?  Well, I went literal.

On a cool Saturday morning, I made a Dutch Baby with Lemon Blueberry Sauce.  (Recipe after the jump).

Monday, May 2, 2016

Secret Recipe Club: Chicken and Vegetable Cobbler

It's time again for the Secret Recipe Club!  When last we left our heroine, she was once again eating carbs and enjoying Pumpkin Muffins.  This month, I took a slightly different tact when looking for a recipe.
The blog I was assigned was one that I am familiar with because we've been involved in other projects together.  I was pleased to have a chance to explore Adventures in All Things Food written by Andrea.  Andrea lives on a farm, has really cute kids, and is crafty.  But she does also cook.
I decided that I didn't want to be just baking again this month.  I mean, I love to bake, and with Andrea's participation in #BundtBakers there were some amazing cakes to choose from (including my favourite cake, Pineapple Upsidedown Cake; or how about Rum Rocky Road??)  But I decided that I wanted to make an entree, so I searched chicken, and came up with something yummy.
When I first told J I wanted to make a chicken cobbler, he looked at me a little oddly.  Like myself, I reserve the use of the word "cobbler" for a fruit dessert.  But with this casserole chock full of chicken and vegetables under a crispy topping, baked in the dish that I would normally make the fruit dish, I am more than willing to make an exception.  But whatever.  When the weather won't warm up, this was a welcome dinner.  On a miserable and drizzly night, we were warmed from the inside out.
I present to you now from Adventures in All Things Food, Chicken and Vegetable Cobbler:

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Magazine Challenge: May Planning

It's May.
In education, when you come back after March Break, there is one month left, affectionately known as "Aprilmayjune". We have added to the insanity by deciding to move.
The house closes June 3, and we're moving June 6.  I have to pack.  And empty my freezer.  It's scary.
But enough about what's going on around here.  My absence around these parts has been due to not really cooking while trying to sell a house.  Now I need to use up the supplies of things that I have amassed to use at "some point", like 3 pork tenderloins.  Or a rather large rack of ribs.
The May 2008 issue of Everyday Food may help in some regards.  I was commenting to J that it's the first issue where I've actually made a few things.  But let's get on to the list of 6, shall we?
Here's what I'd like to make from this issue:

I think I've made the Pizza, and I make the Sausage and Asparagus Saute regularly.  The rest of this list looks doable.  Here's to May and packing!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Secret Recipe Club: Pumpkin Oat Muffins

It's time for April's edition of the Secret Recipe Club!  For those of you who don't know, the Secret Recipe Club is a group of foodie bloggers who are assigned each other in secret.  We then stalk visit each other's blogs, choose a recipe, make it and all reveal who had who and who made what on the same day at the same time.  It's a lot of fun, and I always enjoy learning about a new blogger each month.
This month, I was assigned Anna's blog from over at bcmom's kitchen.  There were so many amazing things to choose from.  I always seemed to be one ingredient short, and I didn't want to go to the store.  I considered her Raspberry Swirl Bread (which I am going to make because it looks amazing!), and I wished I had an occasion worthy of her Caramel Rolls.  I also had some feta in the fridge, and still really want to make Spinach and Feta Stuffed Chicken, but I'll have to buy a bottle of sundried tomatoes.
I finally found a recipe for which I was sure I had everything.  I was so very, very wrong.  But that was okay.  I figured it out.
I present to you now bcmom's Pumpkin Oat Muffins:

Friday, April 1, 2016

#BookClubCookbookCC: An Invitation

Earlier this week, I posted my recipe for March's book in the year long project of the Book Club Cookbook Cooking Crew that Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla has headed up with a group of great bloggers.  I'm thrilled that in the month of April I am hosting the party.
I'm so happy that April's book is Tracy Chevalier's Girl With a Pearl Earring.

While I saw the film when it first came out, I didn't read this until I selected it as this month's read.
It's even better as a book.
Even without Colin Firth.
Read it, and make Griet's Vegetable Soup, or take inspiration from the pages and make something else.  Then enter the giveaway (below the recipe, after the jump).  Start by considering the soup:

Monday, March 28, 2016

#BookClubCookbookCC: Crockpot Baked Beans

It's time for another installment of the Book Club Cookbook Cooking Crew!  Once a month, for 1 year, a group of bloggers led by Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla are cooking from Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp's Book Club Cookbook.  This month, Emily of Life on Food invited us to Make a Charlotte Russe and read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.

I should start by admitting that I didn't read the book.  I planned to, and time got away from me.  I read the notes in the cookbook and Wikipedia's synopsis (as my teacher's soul withered and died), and planned to make a hearty bread to go with the turn of the century story of a family struggling to survive in the slums of Brooklyn.
But then there seemed to be a lot of bread recipes coming from the other club members.
Then I considered the copy of the Boston Cooking School Cookbook that had belonged to my great aunt Anna to make something that was of the right era.  But then I started reading about cooking in medium ovens in buttered baking soda tins with clarified chicken fat, and I was scared off.
Finally, I decided to make something that is economical, makes a ton and can be eaten for days.  I'm always on the lookout for things that I can take in my lunch.  I'm not above eating the same thing for 3 or 4 days in a row.  This fit the bill on cold, damp days to help chase away the chill.
I present to you now from Budget Bytes Crockpot Baked Beans:

Thursday, March 24, 2016

#SixteenCheesecakes: Carrot Cake Cheesecake

In families, there are many traditions.  I've talked in the past about traditions surrounding my family, food and Christmas.  Today, we talk wedding traditions.
Why weddings?  Well, because it's Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla's  wedding anniversary!  And like last year, we're celebrating with a virtual blog party of cheesecake.  Cam had cheesecake at her wedding, so here we are.
I asked on Facebook what kind of wedding traditions my friends families had.  I got a few responses: from honouring departed loved ones to making sure that there are pictures with all of the family, weddings are a time to celebrate with family and friends.
Which brings us back to what I made.  I haven't really mentioned it around here, but my mom remarried last weekend.  We didn't have cheesecake at the dinner afterwards, but I made this for the night before the wedding to share with my mother's family.  J and I also made sure that the tradition of my mother's family lived on.
When I was growing up, we had a blue suitcase.  Every time you used it, a few stray pieces of confetti would come out with your clothes because my grandmother had stuffed my mother's honeymoon bag with confetti.  Confetti and clothing.  Sigh.
Knowing of this, I guarded my own bag when I got married - and almost made it away before giving my car keys to my maid of honour when I went to get changed to leave.  I pulled my nightgown out that night at the hotel and a stream of metallic hearts spewed across the bed at the Best Western.  We still find heart confetti courtesy of my mother from that suitcase.
Not to let her get away this time, J and I got our hands on my mother's bag and...well...let's just say there's now a partial bag of green and gold shamrock confetti sealed up in the back of our car.  Traditions - they're important to keep, even if they're somewhat nefarious.
Now, a cheesecake.  If you can't decide between cake and cheesecake, this is the compromise for you!  Make a small cake and a small cheesecake, and then marble the two to form one delicious dessert with a sour cream and cream cheese topping.  Delicious as the centrepiece dessert for a celebration.
I present to you now Cooking Classy's Carrot Cake Cheesecake:

Monday, March 7, 2016

Secret Recipe Club: Impossible Spinach Pie

Yeah, it's been a while.  But that's okay, because I'm back, and with a scary good recipe.
Welcome to the first Monday of the month, also known as Secret Recipe Club Group A Reveal Day!  Remember the Secret Recipe Club?  It's a group of bloggers who get together, exchange blogs, make something in secret, and all reveal what we made from each other's blogs at the same time.  Very fun!  This month, I was thrilled with my assigned blog, Shockingly Delicious.
On the Facebook page for the Club, Dorothy and her nemesis Sally choose and brag about their assignments every month.  I'm awed by their speed and dedication to the feud.  It was so much fun to go through Dorothy's blog and see the kinds of things she makes and shares.
I considered lots of options - there are so many!  I looked through "Cheap and Easy" for inspiration, and considered more carbs with her breakfast options before finally settling on a retro favourite.
Impossible Pies were a revolution with Bisquick baking mix in the 1970s.  Both savoury and sweet, you put the filling in the pie plate, pour a batter of eggs and Bisquick over and bake; and amazingly, they turn into a quiche-like pie.
Dorothy had a ton of options.  I want to make them all:  Enchilada, Lasagna, and finally what I made for dinner: Spinach.  She even had a recipe to make a small batch of Bisquick-type mix so I wouldn't have to buy a box!  I was sold.
I present to you now from Shockingly Delicious, Impossible Spinach Pie:

Monday, February 8, 2016

#FreshTastyValentines: Individual Tarte Tatin


It's the last day of #FreshTastyValentines. I'm shocked at how much I've posted for this event.  Really, I think it's more a case that I've actually sat down and written up my posts.  There's lots on the camera to come in the coming months.
First things first, we need to recognize all the amazing sponsors who have helped to make the event such a success!
(Have you entered the Giveaway yet?  You totally should.)
Today, the recipe includes a sponsor item, Envy Apples.

You know how those little cooking hack videos keep showing up on Facebook, demonstrating in 90 seconds how to make something totally drool-worthy and gorgeous?
J has taken to sending them to me.  I watch them and think, "I could do that."  and then I don't.  
But when I saw this video, and I knew that I was going to have some Envy Apples to play with, I thought that it would be worth a shot:

When I lived in France, I learned from my host mother to make a tarte tatin in a 9" cake pan.  This is just on a smaller scale.  My recipe also makes 2 - 1 for you, and one for your loved one.  Or 2 for you.
I present to you now Individual Tartes Tatin:

Sunday, February 7, 2016

#FreshTastyValentines: Balsamic Roasted Vegetable and Chicken Stew


Welcome back to another issue of #FreshTastyValentine!  Food to tempt your loved ones that is healthy and delicious.  Here's something delicious.  I believe my exact words to J were that we were having a "bowlful of yum" for dinner.
The beauty of Looneyspoons recipes is that they're delicious, made from staples in your pantry, and they work.  When I saw this stew, it sounded wonderful.  With Robert Mondavi as a sponsor of the blogging event, it just made sense to make something with wine.  Bowlful of yum indeed.
I present to you now from the Looneyspoons Collection, Balsamic Roasted Vegetable and Chicken Stew:

Saturday, February 6, 2016

#FreshTastyValentines: Cinnamon Bun Oatmeal


#FreshTastyValentines has been way fun, and I have recipes all weekend to get everything in!  Here's a delicious idea for a quick breakfast that uses a heart-healthy product that I'd never tried before.
Hulled Hemp Seeds are packed with protein and omega -3 and -6 fatty acids.  When I opened my bag from Bob's Red Mill I thought they looked a lot like ground nuts.  The little bit I tried tasted a lot like nuts.  Yum.
I wasn't sure what I was going to do with a bag of hemp seeds until I got my Janet and Greta newsletter for January.  The recipe included either chia seeds, ground flax seed or hemp seeds.  Decision made.  Then I doubled the recipe so J could have a bowl.
On a cold damp Sunday morning, this was welcome and delicious.
I present to you now from Janet and Greta Cinnamon Bun Oatmeal:

Friday, February 5, 2016

#FreshTastyValentines: Pistachio-Crusted Tilapia


I know I've expressed before my love of the Podleski sisters and their cookbook series, Looneyspoons.  J's and my commitment to healthier eating means that I've spent more time leafing through the pages of my copies, looking for new things to try.
With my promise, I spend lots of time looking for ways to cook fish.  I can't make blackened tilapia every week!  This crust for fish was great on tilapia, but I'd like to try it on salmon too.  Versatility.  That's what we're all about around here.
I present to you now from the Looneyspoons Collection, Pistachio-Crusted Tilapia:

Thursday, February 4, 2016

#FreshTastyValentines: UnCommon Goods


While I don't have a recipe today, I've had so much fun going through this sponsor's website.  Today, we talk about barware.  Specifically, my life and relationships through glasses.  You'd think the people I know and I were lushes or something:

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

#FreshTastyValentines: Tex-Mex Stuffed Butternut Squash


One of the promises that I made to J with his new healthy eating outlook was that I would cook 1 meatless dinner a week.  This was probably one of my less popular promises, seeing as my husband is big on meat.  Big.  As in if I cooked it 3 times a day he'd be all good.
But I went looking for some dishes that contained more beans and less animal protein on my favourite source for such things - Pinterest.  I even created a new board so that I could find things more easily.  This is one of the first things I pinned, knowing full well how much my husband wouldn't be in favour.
While J likes way more vegetables than I do, he's not a fan of squash - except as pumpkin in baked good form.  I like it, but never cook it as a result.  However, I had high hopes for this as really the squash was a vehicle for the Tex-Mex flavours that J is a fan of.  I was wrong.  It's too bad, really; seeing as this is delicious.  I made the stuffing for 4 (I didn't want to use half a can of black beans and have half a can leftover) and took it to work for lunch for a few days afterwards.  It's filling, and so, so good.
I scraped my squash half clean.  J?  Well, he ate the filling and said it was good.  I personally would recommend both.  I present to you now from Life Tastes Good, Tex-Mex Stuffed Butternut Squash:

Monday, February 1, 2016

#FreshTastyValentines: Tomato Tart

Welcome to #FreshTastyValentines, a week's worth of recipes that are healthier for tempting those you love!  I'm thrilled to have joined with the other bloggers and our sponsors for a fun event!

My first recipe is from Rachael's blog, Pizza Rossa, who happens to be my Secret Recipe Club partner this month.  I couldn't just feature one of the recipes from her lovely blog - I featured a second that was a perfect entree for in which we didn't miss the meat.
I have made a similar tart to this in my preblogging days, but it used sliced tomatoes and minced garlic.  I was intrigued by the idea of roasting the tomatoes and garlic first.  Plus with basil and lots of cheese, how could this possibly be bad?
I present to you now from Pizza Rossa, Roasted Tomato Tart:

Secret Recipe Club: Strawberry Maple Baked Oatmeal

It's been a while, but after taking a month off, we're back with a new edition of the Secret Recipe Club!  It's now been 2 years of my belonging to the club in which you're paired up with another blogger and you make something (in secret) from that blog.  Then we all reveal on the same Monday and see what we all made.  Fun, right?  I certainly think so.
This month, I was matched with Rachael from the lovely blog Pizza Rossa.  Rachael is an Australian in Switzerland who has been a vegetarian since she was 18.  J and I are...not...vegetarian.  But J's decision to make healthier choices when eating and my promise to cook a meatless entree every week meant that a vegetarian blog would be a boon to trying something new.
I perused a bunch of recipes, trying very hard to stay away from my old standby on a vegetarian blog, the baking.  Rachael has a bunch of lovely looking baked goods including Cinnamon Challah (or Raspberry Swirl!  So pretty!) and Lemon Macrons with Lemon-Lime Filling (but I'm still intimidated about making macrons.  Rachael has PB&J macrons too.  I totally want to try those as well!!).  I also debated entrees, and found one.  I'm actually sharing it later today as my first recipe post for #FreshTastyValentines!  But then I found this for breakfast, and I wanted to make it too.  Just as well I need 2 recipes for today.
I have made baked oatmeal a couple of times.  I'm always happy with the results and the fact that I then have breakfast for a week that you'd think I'd make it more.  When the weather is like it's been here for the past while - cold, damp, and with a wind that cuts through you, this is a welcome breakfast treat!
I present to you now from Pizza Rossa, Strawberry Maple Baked Oatmeal:

Saturday, January 30, 2016

#FreshTastyValentines: The Intro and Giveaway!!

I'm back, with a new blog event!  Welcome to #FreshTastyValentines - a celebration of healthy foods for your loved ones.
When Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla put out the call for bloggers for this event, I knew I was in!  So have fun.  We're in for a whole lot of fun with some great bloggers!
I've been teasing on Instagram for the past few weeks as things have arrived from our amazing sponsors.
#FreshTastyValentines is almost here. A group of 22 talented food bloggers who will be posting recipes for an entire week that, we hope, will inspire you to make some healthy Valentines treats for your loved ones. Here we are...

The Bloggers
(with links to their homepages, in alphabetical order)

From February 1st through February 8th, not only will you find nearly a hundred recipe posts, but you can enter to win our awesome giveaway, courtesy of some amazingly generous donations from sponsoring companies. See rafflecopter below.

The Sponsors
(with links to their homepages, in alphabetical order)

The Giveaway
For FOURTEEN Different Prizes
begins February 1st and ends February 8th
If you are visiting before the rafflecopter opens, please check back!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you to #FreshTastyValentines sponsors for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #FreshTastyValentines recipe development without additional compensation. All opinions stated are those of the bloggers.