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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Strawberry Whole Wheat Muffins

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Strawberry-Muffins/Detail.aspx
Well, now that the holidays are coming to a close it's time to get back on track. It's not a 'New Year's' resolution to be healthy, it should be a way of life. I had some strawberries kickin' around in my fridge and thought it would be nice to have some muffins in the morning to go with our cup of coffee. You can make all kinds of substitutes in this recipe especially after reading all the reviews. I used whole wheat flour, Splenda, vanilla, cinnamon, and added some Fibre One cereal as a topping. The batter was really gooey and sticky so I'd suggest sticking straight to the recipe as follows (as I didn't..oops!) Nonetheless, they turned out pretty good for being a 'healthy' muffin. Looking forward to enjoying one with my coffee tomorrow morning. Hope you can add a little 'healthy' in the new year too!

Monday, December 27, 2010

P&J on Mini Pitas

Created a fun lunch for Leeland (almost 18 months old) today and it was so easy and quick to make! Peel half of a mini pita and then spread some peanut butter and jam inside. Be creative with these mini pitas and add all kinds of different fillings for your toddler (egg salad, chicken salad, tuna, etc.) Always trying to come up with quick, healthy meals for my little guy!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

1 Year Blog-a-versary & Boxing Day!

Yes, this blog has now turned the BIG 1! It's been fun trying new things, challenging myself, and sharing new ideas. I often hear, "Where do you find the time?" I may be busy at times with my little boys but I have such a supportive husband that deserves all the credit for the magic that happens in the kitchen. He's awesome and I get to spoil him with great meals.

I have some good ideas for the coming year to blog about... so I guess you'll just have to stay tuned! I'm excited to try out some new dishes in my 'new dishes' that I got for Christmas!

As a Boxing Day treat I made a yummy brunch for us. We enjoyed hashbrown casserole, over-hard eggs, thick cut peppercorn bacon, and for dessert some gingerbread pancakes!
Hashbrown casserole

Gingerbread pankcakes

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Molasses Sugar Cookies

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Molasses-Sugar-Cookies/Detail.aspx
A nice Christmastime cookie with lots of great flavor! Roll them in colored red and green sugar. Just add some red and green food coloring to white sugar.

Merry Christmas from my kitchen... to yours!

Monday, December 20, 2010

How HOT are YOU?

http://www.franksredhot.com/
We are big fans of hot sauce in my family. We really do put that '#*$^' on everything! Frank's Red Hot has a great website for recipes using their hot sauce. Check it out for something different!

Peanut Butter Balls

Peanut Butter Balls
Gotta thank my friend Shannon for posting on her blog (flavoredinlove.blogspot.com) a great and easy recipe for Peanut Butter Balls. I used crunchy peanut butter and omitted the walnuts and instead of chocolate wafers just melted some semi-sweet chocolate chips with a bit of margarine in the microwave. After I dipped them in the chocolate I just dusted some with sweetened coconut. After testing a few (which were amazingly tasty) they went straight to the freezer!
This is her recipe:
  • 1 cup peanut butter (I used smooth)
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon hard margerine
  • 1 cup rice crispies
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts (I used a magic bullet to make sure these were adequately chopped)
  • 2/3 cup chocolate melting wafers (I actually ran out of chocolate, so I recommend having more on hand)
Beat your wet ingredients together, then stir in the rice crispies and walnuts.  Roll into 1-inch balls.  Place on wax paper or parchment paper lined sheets and chill until firm.

Melt chocolate, roll balls into chocolate, using a couple of forks to help with coating and  removing them again.  Let stand until set.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Spinach Fettucini

Is it just me or are there like a hundred different ways to spell 'fettucini' alfredo. Anyways, too keep up with my spinach kick I bought the green box of pasta to try out. Funny... but it didn't taste at all like spinach and my hubby ate it all up! Try it out for something different!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Salmon Stir-fry

So I made a goal to get back on the 'green' track of things as of today. I stocked up on all kinds of veggies and lean meats in our grocery order the day before and I do not like wasting so it will have to get eaten! Tonight we enjoyed some salmon done up in the frying pan and I stirfried some veggies on a bed of baby spinach. To the veggies I added PC brand Honey Hoisin stir-fry sauce which gave a nice sweet yet spicy taste. I also noticed at the grocery store that organic items are becoming less expensive so we've been enjoying picking up more since it is better... isn't it?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Corn Chowder with Sausage & Chocolate Coconut Mounds


I love a nice soup, chili, or chowder simmering on the stove. They're quick and easy to prepare and all ready when it's time to sit down and eat! Normally I use bacon in my corn chowder but today I picked up some apple sausages for something a little different. I used this http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Corn-Chowder/Detail.aspx recipe as a starter and from there did my own thing. I boiled the sausages for about 10 mins and then removed the 'skin' layer. I put it in the frying pan to brown up and cut them up into chunks while they cooked. I added the sausage to the chowder after the potatoes were done cooking and the simmering process began. This corn chowder was delicious and the added apple sausage gave it great flavor!

For dessert I whipped up some Chocolate Coconut Mounds (aka coconut macaroons). They were pretty easy and quick to do and it was also helpful that I was able to watch them being made on CBC's Best Recipes Ever cooking show (thank goodness for PVR!) You need to use a rimless baking sheet to make these but if you don't have one (like me) all you need to do is just turn over a regular baking sheet and you're good to go. These were a really yummy treat and can be frozen for up to a month! Perfect for when guests are stopping by over the holidays.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Eggnog Pancakes!

Nothing spells (and even smells) comfort like having breakfast for supper. I'm always trying to do something fun with my pancakes whether it's adding some spices, fruit, or in this case some eggnog! I used PC Organic Pancake mix (follow directions) and instead of  3/4 cup of milk I used eggnog and also added some cinnamon and nutmeg to the mix. My little guy loves pancakes, especially with the whip topping. They were nice and fluffy and super good! Try it out!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Pecan Pie Cheesecake

I'm really big on improvising and modifying recipes especially if I look in my cupboards and don't have all the specific ingredients. I get a lot of different recipes sent to me through different sites that I sign up for. This one I had to modify only because I did not want to send my poor husband on a hunt through a busy grocery store to find 'crystallized ginger' pieces which this recipe called for https://lifemadedelicious.ca/en/Recipes/P/Pecan_Pie_Ginger_Cheesecake.aspx. So instead of it being a 'Pecan Pie Ginger Cheesecake' it's simply a Pecan Pie Cheesecake! I also added some nutmeg to the cheesecake mixture and chopped up almonds along with the pecans for the topping. I am taking this pie to a family potluck tomorrow so we'll have to see when it's cut into how it turned out and tasted! What are you making for your family Christmas get togethers?

Visit Life Made Delicious for a $1.00 off  coupon on Pillsbury Pie Crust so you can try this recipe too!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Peanut Butter Fudge

Searching for an easy and delicious Peanut Butter Fudge with chocolate on top recipe? I had been checking around for a good one but had no luck. Then a friend of mine on Facebook sent me the one she likes to use so I had to try it out. It turned out awesome! I used crunchy peanut butter instead of smooth but it gives it a nice crunch and the chocolate on the top reminds me of a peanut butter ball! It also freezes great too and perfect to haul out if you are expecting company over the holiday! Enjoy and thank you Angela for sharing!

Peanut Butter Fudge

1 cup Margarine
1 cup Peanut Butter
Melt 2 minutes in Microwave on high

Stir in : 1 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt
3 & 1/2 cups Icing Sugar

Blend well with mixer if stirring is too hard for you !
Press in an 8 x 8 lightly greased pan or line with tin foil

Top layer :

1/2 cup Peanut Butter
1/2 cup milk Chocolate Chips

Melt 1.5 minutes
Spread evenly on top of 1 st mixture
chill in fridge 1 hour, cut and enjoy !

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Lunchtime with Leeland

Tomato Soup w/ Grill Cheese
I really enjoy cooking up meals for my little guy and watching him eat them up. Today for lunch we shared a bowl of tomato soup and grill cheese sandwiches. It's also important as a mom to make sure we're getting fed too! Leeland is a great eater and I make sure he's getting healthy snacks in between mealtimes. It helps that he is also on a good routine so he's not just snacking all day and come meal time he gives us no fuss and all eats! I foresee very big grocery bills in the near future especially with another little boy growing up fast too!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Noodle Bake & Butterscotch Cookies

Sometimes it's nice to throw on a quick casserole for supper for when Adam gets home from work. It's something that can be prepared ahead of time and put in the fridge and then into the oven. I tried out the 'creamy beef and noodle bake' recipe from my Kraft Canada magazine http://www.kraftcanada.com/en/recipes/creamy-beef-noodle-bake-120589.aspx. It wasn't spectacular or anything special which wasn't surprising but it was filling and convenient.

Creamy Beef & Noodle Bake
I also made some cookies that I found in my Five Roses cookbook that looked super easy. Then I found a nice caramel icing to put on top of them with some sprinkles. They are a nice light, rolled out cookie with some added nutmeg.
Butterscotch Cookies with Caramel Icing

Rules for Making Coffee

I got this great 'Five Roses: A Guide to Good Cooking' cookbook from my father in law back a few Christmases ago and just hauled it out this morning to take a peek. There is so much good info in this cookbook as well as awesome recipes! I found a quick recipe for making Butterscotch Cookies which are made up and chilling in the fridge as we speak so I will need to blog about them once they're made. But what I do want to share has to do with coffee! We love coffee in our family. I enjoy flavored coffees and flavored creamers too. There are rules to making a good pot of coffee which are listed in the cookbook that I would like to share to make sure you are getting the perfect mug of coffee each time!

1. Always start with a perfectly clean coffee maker.
2. Use fresh cold water.
3. Use fresh coffee. Buy only one week's supply at a time and store in an airtight container.
4. Use the right type of grind for your coffee makers.
5. Measure coffee accurately, with coffee measure or standard measuring spoon. Suggested measurements for 1 cup of water are:
weak - 1 tablespoon
medium - 2 tablespoons
strong - 3 tablespoons
6. Depending on what type of coffee maker you have, these measurements may vary. Read manufacturer's instructions carefully.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Pineapple Rice Pudding

Pineapple Rice Pudding w/ toasted coconut
Don't you just love it when you find a recipe and you have all the ingredients you need in your cupboard? My sister dropped off her Crock Pot Slowcooker recipe book and I was able to browse through and found this recipe for Pineapple Rice Pudding. It sounded divine so I had to try! I used brown jasmine rice instead of the arborio rice that it called for. Also found the actual recipe online so here it is and try it in your slow cooker for a nice warm dessert today!
http://recipes.howstuffworks.com/pineapple-rice-pudding-recipe.htm#mkcpgn=fb3
COOK TIME 3 to 4 hours
PREP TIME 10 minutes
YIELD Makes about 8 (1 cup) servings
INGREDIENTS
1can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple in juice, undrained
1can (13-1/2 ounces) coconut milk
1can (12 ounces) nonfat evaporated milk
3/4cup uncooked arborio rice
2eggs, lightly beaten
1/4cup sugar
1/4cup packed light brown sugar
1/2teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4teaspoon salt
Whipped topping

Toasted coconut for garnish* (optional)
*To toast coconut, spread evenly on ungreased baking sheet. Toast in preheated 350°F oven 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until light golden brown.
PREPARATION:
SLOW COOKER DIRECTIONS
  1. Place pineapple with juice, coconut milk, evaporated milk, rice, eggs, sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt into slow cooker; mix well. Cover; cook on HIGH 3 to 4 hours or until thickened and rice is tender.
  2. Stir until blended. Serve warm or chilled with whipped topping. Garnish with coconut, if desired.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Mexican Christmas Dinner

Chili in Spinach Tortilla
Cream cheese taco dip

Tonight my sister Holly and her husband Jordan came over for dinner and then took out my oldest boy Leeland (almost 17 months old) to the Santa Clause Parade. I wanted to make something fun and easy to prepare before they went. It was definetly the perfect day to have chili... the snow was falling really lightly all day and was so pretty. A friend of mine suggested to me on Facebook after seeing my Spicy Taco Salad to use red and green tortilla shells as the bowls for Christmas so that is what I did! Thank you Shannon! I bought the green tortilla (which are made out of spinach) and formed them into a bowl and stuck them in the oven to harden up. I also made a taco dip (cream cheese, salsa, shredded cheese) as an appetizer. Earlier in the morning I made some chocolate cupcakes to decorate later on for a quick dessert. I love how the red and green theme of Christmas came out in the Mexican food. It was a great meal... and of course with great company. Leeland had a blast with his Auntie and Uncle at the parade and I'm happy he was able to experience it.

Oy, Spinach...

Honey Mustard Chicken
So I know it's important to eat your greens and I've become a big fan of spinach in the past year. I'm trying to be creative when making a salad with it. Have some fun with your spinach!
Lemon Herbed Salmon

Giving Back!

Chocolate Chip Cookies
It's that time of year again... yes Christmas. But for some people it is not a glamorous time of year but sometimes a sad one and a hard one to get through. Last year I had the privilege of serving some of the homeless and less fortunate in the uptown Saint John area with an organization called Outflow. Our team was responsible for doing 2 full meals a month. It was a challenge but very rewarding. This year I am not able to attend but have offered to do desserts. I've been taking an afternoon and baking up some cookies and squares and then putting them in the freezer so they are all ready to go if they are needed. I love doing Christmas baking but I find when it's done too early it gets eaten up and we don't really need the added pounds right now! So challenge yourself  this season to find a way to give back and help someone out. It'll be something I will certainly be instilling in my children that we need to help others in a time when we have so much. Happy baking and lets make poverty history!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Impress your Guests

Molten Dark Chocolate Cake
Want to make a dessert that will have everyone saying, "Where can I get the recipe to make this!" You can find lots of recipes for Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes all over the internet but the one to try out is inside the box of Baker's Premium Dark Chocolate 70% squares. You can watch a video of how to make one on the Kraft website http://www.kraftcanada.com/en/recipes/molten-chocolate-cakes-82994.aspx as well as get the recipe. They are a lot of fun to make and you can even make up the batter ahead of time and put it in the ramekins and leave in the fridge for up to 24 hrs. Challenge yourself, you won't regret it!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Easy Tortellini

Olivier Tortellini
I like meals that are delicious but also easy to make especially when you're keeping two little ones occupied. When my hubby is working a 12 hour day shift, it can be hard to get supper on the table for when he gets home but today he was home early and it was all ready when he came through the door so we were able to all eat together. I think it's important as a family to eat together at the table with no distractions and we do everytime the opportunity is there.

Tonight's menu was Olivier Tortellini stuffed with sausage and provolone cheese with Prego pasta sauce and a side of french green beans.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Spoiling the Family

I really enjoy entertaining and putting on some great food with great company. I also think a great way to give back to family is cooking up a nice meal but it's really the least I could do for my family.

We started our meal with a Creamy Pumpkin Soup http://www.verybestbaking.com/recipes/32396/Creamy-Pumpkin-Soup/detail.aspx which I tweaked just a little. I found it to be a little bland tasting so I kicked it up a notch with some Italian seasonings, dried red chili peppers and a little chili powder for a bit of heat but not too much. Omitted the onion but used onion powder. It's the kind of soup that you just have to keep taste testing until you got it where you want it. It did taste awesome and I'm glad to have tried it out because it was a huge hit and perfect way to start off the meal. There was also a side dish of pita bread and tzatiki sauce.
Creamy Pumpkin Soup

I picked up some souvlaki  marinated thick pork chops at Costco and paired it up with garlic mashed potatoes (used red potatoes and left the skins on), green beans (boiled for 5 mins. then tossed in cold water then added to the wok) which were stir fried with shredded carrots and button mushrooms.











Souvlaki Pork with garlic mashed potatoes 















For dessert I had made brownies with chocolate icing http://www.hersheycanada.com/en/recipes/recipes/detail.asp?id=6820&page=1&per=25&classics=1#content_area earlier in the day and it was the best way to end a great meal. Doing big meals like this may seem like a hassle with having little ones around but it really can be easy as long as you have everything planned out ahead of time. I love spoiling my family and it's a great way to give back and say "thank you"!
Brownies

Monday, November 22, 2010

Feelin' Sloppy?

Super easy sloppy joes! All you need is some lean ground beef, small can of tomato paste, Club House sloppy joe package seasoning and add some water to thicken it up (directions are on the back of the package). Pictured is a fresh whole grain bun from Costco topped with shredded cheese.
Sloppy Joe

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Friday, November 12, 2010

Simple & Easy Chicken Fettucini

Chicken Fettucini with Penne Pasta
Make a great restaurant meal in the time it takes you to cook up the pasta. Slice up chicken breasts and add them to your pan (or wok) with some chicken broth, minced garlic, and some pepper. Add some seasonings of your choice (pizza seasoning works great). Boil up your pasta of choice and in a smaller pot make your sauce. To make things easy just use a package Alfredo mix (it will also cut down all the fat too of a regular Alfredo sauce). When your chicken is done remove it from the pan (or wok) and add your mushrooms (or other veggies if you prefer) with the remaining juices left over (add some chicken broth if it dried up). Add a side salad and you can say, "Badda Boo Badda Bing!"

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Hamburger Pot Pie

Hamburger Pot Pie
Pot pies are one of those great recipes that you can just throw together when you have all the ingredients. I had a lot of ideas running around in my head as to what to create with my lean ground beef. But the best was a nice pot pie that would be all ready to go right at supper time and I wouldn't have to slave in the kitchen since it can be all made ahead. This recipe is easy and great if you have veggies in your fridge to use up. Here's what I did:

Took out frozen dough to let unthaw.
Browned up the beef then added 2 packets of brown gravy (and 2 cups of water) to the mix. Let simmer.
Defrosted 2 cups of frozen mixed veggies by putting them in some hot water to soften up then added to mix.
Peeled and cubed up 2 potatoes then boiled them, drain water, then add to mix.
Let the mixture simmer.
Add the mixture to a glass pie plate then top with the pie crust (don't forget to poke holes through it to let the steam out).
Turn oven to 350 degrees and bake for 40-50 mins (or as directed on the pie crust box).

Nothing is more pleasing then to watch my little guy eat this right up! I don't even think he noticed all the peas he was eating because the flavor was so good!

Mixture simmering


Enjoy! 

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

"Top 5 Healthy Foods to put on your plate"

These are the top 5 healthy foods to put on your plate as per Healthy Choice Canada.
http://www.healthychoice.com

1.    Whole grains
Why: They’re a bundle of goodness because they offer the nutrition of all three parts of the grain:
-       the bran (for fibre);
-       the endosperm (for carbohydrates and some protein); and
-       the germ (for vitamins, minerals and healthy fats).[1]
How: Swap brown rice for white rice in your favourite recipes. Look for foods made with barley. Experiment with different whole grains like quinoa and buckwheat.  

2.    Broccoli
Why: This brilliant green gem contains disease-fighting antioxidants. Just half a cup of cooked broccoli contains almost 75% of your daily quota for vitamin C too.[2]
How: For maximum nutrition, eat broccoli lightly steamed or stir-fried.

3.    Sweet potatoes
Why: A beta-carotene all-star and an important source of potassium.[3]
How: Try them baked or boiled. Add just a drizzle of non hydrogenated margarine to enhance the absorption of beta-carotene.

4.    Beans
Why: A healthy, low fat meat alternative that’s filled with fibre.
How: Add a handful of chickpeas to a salad. Make a lentil soup, bean burgers, or a big pot of chilli for supper.  

5.    Salmon
Why: My top pick for omega-3 fats and one of the few foods that naturally contain vitamin D.[4]
How: Bake it, broil it, or buy it in a can.

Making a meal out of a salad

Bbq'd steak spinach salad
 Salads don't need to stay as a side when you can design them in such a way that they turn out to be your whole meal on a plate. Start by picking your greens and then your toppings. Add a hearty protein and you've got a great meal. Not to mention super healthy! I created a spinach salad with bbq'd medium/well done slices of steak with drizzled balsamic dressing. Looks like it came from an expensive restaurant and it only took 15 mins. Have fun creating and experimenting with all kinds of variations of salads.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Baked Rosti Potatoes

Baked Rosti Potatoes & Garlic Pork Steak
I get pretty excited when my Kraft Canada Magazine arrives in the mail. Actually I get pretty excited when anything arrives in the mail in my name and a lot of other free goodies have lately. Usually I'll try one or two recipes in the magazines just to try out something different. Came across a recipe for baked rosti potatoes and thought I'd pair that up with our garlic pork steaks (already pre-marinated from the Supertore in the package). The pork was bbq'd and tasted amazing but the potatoes I was not a fan of too much but hubby seemed to like them. He is a total meat and potatoes guy so it doesn't take much to please him. They just tasted really bland to me and could have used some more seasonings. I didn't use the small onion it called for since we don't like onions or the texture of them so I added onion powder as a substitute. So in my opinion they were a bit of a letdown. Even the ratings that other people gave this recipe on the KraftCanada website said it was bland and gave it a low score. See recipe: http://www.kraftcanada.com/en/recipes/baked-rosti-potatoes-120591.aspx

Tapioca Pudding
For dessert, my hubby mentioned if I'd make him some tapioca pudding this week and I finally got around to it. It's just the ClubHouse box brand that was used. I don't know what he likes so much about it but I sprinkled some nutmeg and added some walnuts to mine. Psst... it's also gluten free!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Get warm and cozy!

The evenings are hitting the minus zero mark which means time for hot drinks, getting cozy by the fire, and watching your favorite tv shows or movies. So grab your favorite mug, hot drink, and get cozy!
Raspberry Hot Chocolate

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Shake up your Fish!

Grab a box of Shake N' Bake and try it on some fish!

Ranch crusted Haddock

Monday, October 25, 2010

Mini hamburgers on Panini bread

As much as I am always recipe hunting through cookbooks and online searching, I also love watching cooking shows! Thank goodness for that nifty little 'record' button because I am not sure I could catch them all in time of when they're on. I've been PVRing CBC's Best Recipes Ever show and caught up with a few shows the other day. There was a great and easy recipe for mini cheeseburgers aka sliders - http://www.cbc.ca/bestrecipes/2010/10/mini-cheeseburgers.html - but I changed up a few things. We're not huge relish fans in this house so I added some flax seed and instead of buns used panini bread from Costco. They were really tasty and fun! As a side dish I just cut up some potatoes, put them in a bowl and microwaved for about 5-6 mins, tossed them on a baking sheet with some olive oil and lots of seasonings and baked in the oven at the same temp as the burgers (375 degrees for 20 mins). I put in the sliders halfway through the cooking of the potatoes. These sliders are also great for portion control because it makes you feel like you are eating a whole hamburger! My little guy indulged in 3 of the patties and chowed down on the panini bread, but he's a growing boy!

How do you like your Omelette?

Mushroom, Spinach & Cheese Omelette
There are so many variations of omelettes! They're great for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner. My little guy loves breakfast and we always share an omelette together. It's also a good way of sneaking in some of the veggies he normally would not eat. Our 'usual' is a mushroom, spinach, and cheese with lots of seasonings. I think the secret to a good omelette is making sure you use a non-stick pan and coat the bottom of the pan with butter or margarine before tossing in the mixture and make sure to not add milk either. Milk will make it too fluffy. As far as servings are concerned, I use 3 eggs (cooked in a smaller pan) if it's just Leeland and I sharing or 6 eggs if my hubby and I are sharing (cooked in a med size pan). It's good if you use a spatula for folding over. Create your own omelette today!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Awesome Chocolate Chip Cookies!

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Best-Chocolate-Chip-Cookies/Detail.aspx
Stumbled across this recipe for "Best Chocolate Chip Cookies" and I wondered if it was really true? Guess what? It is! They really are great cookies and taste like they came from a bakery. The only change I made was omitting the walnuts (my hubby is not a big fan of nuts and I was making them mostly for him) and using whole wheat flour. 10 mins is the perfect timing for these cookies. So don't go out and buy store bought cookies... make your own! 

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Pork that packs a punch!

Bacon wrapped pork medallion
Decided to wrap some bacon around a nice thick pork medallion and toss it on the BBQ. Also made sweet potato chips. To make these just thinly slice up your sweet potatoes, microwave for about 4 mins, then spread out on a baking sheet. Add some olive oil and seasonings and put in the oven for about 15-20 mins or until crispy but not burnt at 375 degrees. Be sure to flip them over half way through the baking time. It's a quick and very good meal to throw together!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Honey isn't just for the Bees!

Sweet Cheese Baklava
For some reason I've been making a lot more desserts lately. It's fun ending a nice supper with a nice dessert! My mom gave me a jar of honey that a neighbor had given her made by their own bees. So I went on a mission to find a recipe using honey, cream cheese, and phyllo pastry! Found one on the Kraft Canada website that fit nicely and tasted just as sweet. This was also my first time using phyllo as well. The honey worked perfectly with the cream cheese and it smelled awesome while it was in the oven baking. Topped it off with a bit of drizzled honey. Enjoy!

SWEET CHEESE BAKLAVA
1 cup finely chopped walnuts

1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 pkg. (250 g each) Philadelphia Brick Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup honey, divided
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
8 frozen phyllo sheets, thawed, cut in half crosswise
1/3 cup margarine, melted

make it

HEAT oven to 350°F.
MIX nuts, sugar and spices; set aside. Beat cream cheese, 1/4 cup honey and vanilla in large bowl with mixer until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each.
LAYER phyllo in 13x9-inch pan, brushing each sheet with butter and sprinkling 1 rounded tablespoonful nut mixture between every other layer. Spread top with cream cheese mixture.
BAKE 25 to 30 min. or until cream cheese mixture is set. Heat remaining 1/4 cup honey; drizzle over baklava. Cool completely before cutting to serve.

kraft kitchens tips

HOW TO KEEP PHYLLO FROM DRYING OUT
Keep phyllo sheets covered with a sheet of plastic wrap or parchment and a damp towel until ready to use.
HOW TO FINELY CHOP NUTS
Process nuts and sugar in food processor until nuts are finely chopped.
STORAGE KNOW-HOW
Cover with plastic wrap and store in refrigerator up to 2 days. For best flavour, remove baklava from refrigerator about 30 min. before serving.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Thanksgiving Din Dessert

My favorite dessert to end any Thanksgiving dinner is pumpkin pie! Someday when I have some time I'd like to try to make my own crust and puree a pumpkin from scratch. But for now I've perfected doing it the simple way by using a frozen pie crust and a can of pie filling. I came across a recipe for Pumpkin Pie Crisp and the topping on it looked amazing so I will be trying it out on my pie tomorrow to take to the family feast on Monday! Happy Thanksgiving everyone... and happy eats!
Crisp Topping for Pumpkin Pie

1 cup rolled oats
3/4 dark brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup melted butter
Happy Thanksgiving! Love, The Smiths

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Dessert for Two

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Apple-Crisp-2/Detail.aspx
Tis the season for apples. Tried out this super easy recipe for mini apple crisps and they turned out great. I made  few adjustments to the recipe by adding 1/4 tsp of nutmeg, 1 tbsp of rolled oats, 1 tsp of vanilla to the apples, and used brown sugar and whole wheat flour. Also added walnuts to the top which toasted up really nice in the oven. Use any type of apple or even pears you may have hanging around! A dollop of whip cream or ice cream would work well too. Try this out and impress your guests!