Sunday, December 18, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Lattes

As I share this with you, I am sitting cozy on my couch, tree lit, presents (mostly) wrapped, cradling a mug of pumpkin spiced goodness.

I have been trying to perfect this for a few weeks now... first, I came up with my own pumpkin spice blend using ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and so on. It was too gritty. I cut back on the spices and added vanilla. It wasn't rich enough. I tried with two tablespoons of pumpkin. Getting closer... but not quite right.

I needed to capture the rich spiciness without the gritty texture... then it dawned on me! A sugar syrup. You wouldn't think that this is such a jump since the big coffee shops use a sugar syrup as a flavour base in their drinks but it never occurred to me sooner that I should just make this at home too.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies

Thanks for visiting! You may have found this post through Pinterest, the Great Food Bloggers Cookie Swap, or Metro Edmonton... yay! Please stay a while and check out some of my other cookies, like the Lemon Cranberry Pecan Oatmeal cookies or -if marshmallows are more your schtick- there are Chocolate Stout Marshmallows topped with crushed pretzels, among other treats and treasures. Enjoy!

When word spread about a cookie exchange for food bloggers, I paused... could I pull this off? Could I be creative and produce a cookie that would make a food blogger also pause? I've so enjoyed making sweets and treats for my friends and family that I wasn't even sure why I was concerned! I gave my head a shake, surfed on over to the sign-up page, and signed myself up!

Let me say... I am so glad that I did that! Thoughts of the cookie that I would create took over my thoughts. I scribbled ideas onto scrap paper and post-it notes. I made several trips to the craft stores to find appropriate packaging. I eagerly made and mailed my little care packages, then waited in very eager anticipation for the arrival of cookies in my mailbox and my cookies in the mailboxes of my fellow bloggers. 

This whole exchange really put me into the holiday spirit but also challenged me to come up with a creative and new cookie to share... it kick-started the rest of my Christmas baking and introduced me to a community of bloggers that I found so inspiring... A big thanks again to Lindsay of Love and Olive Oil (and her Chocolate Sandwich Cookies with Malted Milk Chocolate Buttercream) and Julie of the Little Kitchen (and her New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookie). I can't wait for the next Great Food Bloggers Cookie Swap.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Eats & Smiles

After all of the appearances on blogs and Pinterest,
I have been trying to come up with
my perfect version of the pumpkin spice latte.
Current attempts feature my own pumpkin spice blend,
pumpkin puree, milk, espresso and vanilla... still tweaking.

I received my first batch of cookies from the
More photos to come with the full cookie post next week.

 Both the cookies and the lattes have been a treat
while I work away on my Christmas offerings at the dining room table...
Outside the window, the birds on our bird feeder and on the ground below
are a delightful distraction, for me and for the cats.

Not so much a smile then but rather one for the memories, 
my Santa figurine (that I've had since wee) plummeted from the shelf above the television
to a shattered demise below. A few tears... then back to it.

 Another glorious weekend... 
Doug, Charlie and I trekked about the snow and trees and bridges.

Eats and Smiles.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Peppermint Marshmallows

I have been on a real marshmallow kick lately. It's partially because I am obsessed with my Christmas baking but also because of the cold weather... what better to make than hot chocolate with marshmallows (as evidenced in my Eats & Smiles post last week).

In addition to those two very compelling reasons, I had one other very exciting reason for the marshmallow making... I signed up (a few weeks ago) for a food bloggers cookie swap! This swap was the brainchild of Lindsay of Love and Olive Oil and Julie of The Little Kitchen. What a great way to connect with a very vibrant food blogging community and share your wares!

They will be doing a round-up of all of the swap recipes (I will include a link once the recipes have been posted). You can also follow #fbcookieswap on Twitter to see some of the action unfold!

While I cannot yet share my cookie swap recipe here (come back on the 12th!), I can and will share the Peppermint Marshmallows with you!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Eats & Smiles

By way of introduction... I have been wracking my brain to come up with something special to celebrate my 100th post. Many bloggers enjoy "Wordless Wednesdays" and share photo posts with few or no words accompanying them. As I am a woman of typically MANY words, I will likely opt for the "few" as opposed to the "no" but thought this might be a great new wannafoodie feature that will help me to share with each of you and alleviate the pressure of coming up with a new recipe in order to blog. Let's face it... there are some weeks where I eat pizza or taco salad nearly every day (albeit homemade but that wasn't necessarily blog-worthy).

So, thank you for reading... and being part of my wannafoodie world. Time for me to be silent(ish) and just share the things that make us smile... in food and in life.

A day not too long ago...

Charlie, our 11 month old black lab

Doug and the retrieving puppy.

Me, trying to be an outside person.

A day more recent...

Butternut squash soup with goat cheese, balsamic caramelized beets and vino.

Hot chocolate with homemade peppermint marshmallows.

Eats and Smiles.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Chocolate Stout Marshmallows

Last year, a great night with my girlfriend Caitlin parlayed into a guest post and some very pretty festive treats over the holiday break... Pretty, swirly red, vanilla kissed marshmallows made their way into the hands of fortunate friends and many a mug of steaming hot chocolate.

This is one of two times during the year that I am interested in marshmallows... generally, I'm not a fan. BUT during those cool, dark nights around a campfire in the summer OR the frigid winter while curled up on the couch under blanket and cuddling a mug, I could eat marshmallows until the sugar coma hits.

Winter has only recently hit and already I am in marshmallow mania. While grabbing supplies at the grocery, I did nab that tiny bottle of peppermint extract (which I will probably not find again in a few short weeks when everyone is Christmas baking up a storm) for some future marshmallow making... otherwise, it was the regular suspects before grabbing a bag of pretzels then heading across the street for our new star - beer!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Brunch with Friends: Menu Two

Well, I think it is safe to say that Brunch with Friends is going to become a regular feature here on wannafoodie. I spend hours dreaming up these menus and thinking about how to build levels of flavours into such warm, comforting, start-your-day food. How will each component connect with the other once it is on the plate? How do I make each component stand out while complimenting the others? How do I elevate the more simple components into something truly memorable? It has really been an energizing and inspiring experience... and hopefully one that you will get on board with.

This time, we were hosting Doug's sister Kate, her husband Alan and their daughter Emma (for shame! I didn't nab a photo of the family... next time!). Oh, and I can't possibly forget Boo, their pup, who came for a play-date with Charlie, our eleven month old black Lab. It was such a nice excuse to catch-up with Kate and Alan but also to see the ever-changing Emma, who two short weeks ago was barely walking and now is charging around without a care in the world. (How fast they grow!) 

The flavours that I played with today are ones that warm me as the weather cools... cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, pumpkin and citrus. They have been woven throughout all...

Friday, November 4, 2011

Autumnal Sugar Cookies

Pinterest has been the most ridiculously addictive website for me... it's like an ever-changing, ever-accessible inspiration board of ideas, wishes, plans and such. I dream of a completely customized home with an expansive porch complete with swing, his and her sinks in the master bathroom off the master retreat (which, of course, has an awe-inspiring walk-in closet), an open central stairway filled floor-to-ceiling with art and photos and memories, a cupboard to a secret room a la Narnia, and a rolling ladder reaching to the upper echelons of a private library... and so on and so on. Oh, to have all of the money in the world.

Anyway, this really did start as a food blog post! (I did say that Pinterest got my imagination soaring...) So, I have been enthralled with photo after photo of beautiful handmade gifts, and wrapping and packaging that are as beautiful as the gifts within. I bookmark or repin and plan to make something like these. Today was that day.

After zipping to Michael's, I returned with a sale score of $0.80 cookie cutters in the shape of a ghost and a pumpkin! Sugar cookies were on the brain... and now they were going to be Halloween themed.

I'm not a fan of the sickly sweet, overly iced sugar cookies. Maybe they aren't sophisticated enough in terms of their flavour or I'm just a snob (maybe a bit of both)... I wanted to make a more "grown up" sugar cookie (mostly anyway!). A bit less sugar and a bit more spice.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Brunch with Friends: Menu One

September and October have always been hectic months for me. Ever since I was a little girl, Momma R would tell me that I was busy as a bee during these months and would end up sick at some point during or towards the end of it. Well, true to form, I am sitting in a hotel room in Whitehorse and, instead of breaking bread with friends tonight, I am drinking neo citran and watching pixelated food network. At least, it gives me the opportunity to take a break, process some photos and give wannafoodie some overdue attention.

Our new plan for breaking bread and sharing time with friends is to host them for brunch. Brunch has always been one of my most favourite meals... it has the best of everything - sweet, savoury, boozy and a civilized hour! hahah. I enjoy dinner parties but Doug and I have a newfound appreciation for brunch parties - prepping in advance, hosting our friends, then still having our whole day to fuss and muss and reset for the week.

In the midst of our chaotic fall and just prior to leaving on our Mexican adventure and wedding celebration of our friends, Cary and Des, we took a welcome reprieve and invited the soon-to-be newlyweds to kick off our Brunch with Friends series.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Preserving! Hibiscus Syrup

I've always been slightly spoiled by my intrepid travelling friend, Dean. As he has travelled the world for work, Dean has seen and experienced things that most of us only read about. No lie. And, as he has travelled, he has generously brought me unusual and interesting souvenirs... carpets and scarves from Pakistan to carved wooden masks from Africa to an evil eye from Turkey. Most recently, I was spoiled with a ridiculously large bag of dried hibiscus flowers and no idea what to do with them. (Momma oozed with jealousy after having recently purchased a significantly smaller bag for more than $12.)

So, Dean regaled us with tales of a hibiscus drink that the locals would make, as the hibiscus added a very refreshing tone to sparkling water or juices. And while we haven't had four months of summer full of hot days, we have had some beautiful days worthy of thirst quenching.

You might laugh here... or nod your head in commiserating agreement. This recipe actually started as an attempt at making hibiscus jelly, which I thought would be the most amazing addition to a cheese plate or just on some lovely airy scones. Well, alongside this "intention" was my complete lack of canning and jelly making knowledge. By "complete lack," I mean precisely that. I had never ever attempted to make jelly before this. Everything went exceedingly well until I blindly added the pectin, jarred the mixture, then processed it (for a requisite 10 minutes)... never to see the mixture jell. Honestly, I just assumed that it would. That said, my newfound preserving confidence (after purchasing  the cookbook and ambitiously attempting about five+ more recipes in one weekend) led me to this conclusion... my jelly may not have jelled but my syrup turned out perfectly.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


With the abundance of beautiful ripe fruits and vegetables seems to come the overwhelming need (or, sometimes, guilty conscience) to preserve said produce and save it from over-ripening and being destined for the garbage bin... Couple that general urge (or guilt) with two super-preservers (yep... I mean you, Heather and Amanda) and this wannafoodie got her butt kicked thoroughly into preserving gear.

My first foray into preserving was last summer with my good friend Heather. She and her husband turned their thumbs green and yielded a corner garden full of lovely things. In particular, there was a great abundance of green beans. And Heather and I, being Heather and I, thought immediately of amazing spicy pickled beans to adorn our caesars. The whole escapade was fraught with squeals of uncertainty, splashes of vinegar and several large jars of (pickling) beans.

This year, I was regaled with tales of Heather's preserving (including some incredible tasting apple butter) and Amanda's days of preserving her and her boyfriend's produce. I was inspired. And, thus, I got to work.

Pictured (from left to right): Hibiscus Syrup, Carrot Jam, Bread and Butter Pickles, Corn Relish, Spiced Golden Plum Jam, Peach and Onion Chutney, Spicy Pickled Beans, Dill Pickles, Spicy Dill Pickes, Silk Road Dill Pickles, Pickled Carrots.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

No Knead Bread

Despite the warm temperatures and general reluctance to turn on the oven at any point, I had issued a challenge to myself... I was going to bake all of the bread for my household. Or, at the very least, I would bake the majority of the bread required (or desired) for myself, boyfriend and bread-loving cat, Wally.

I have sung the praises of my Momma and her intuitive bread making abilities. I too wanted to create wonderful, yeasty presents and be revered by all who taste it. hahah. Well, maybe that is a bit lofty. That said, I truly do want to hone this skill and become one of those people who can manipulate four simple ingredients (and sometimes a few more) into a wonderfully satisfying, tastes like home, loaf of happy.

As a starting point, I have looked to build my confidence with Jim Lahey's (Sullivan Street Bakery) No Knead Bread. I kneaded (hahaha) some wins before I embarked on some more challenging (or even seemingly challenging) loaves. This was a great starting place.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Truffled Pizza

Ever since the slow rise pizza dough lesson at Eat Alberta, pizza seems to be in weekly rotation. It's just such a fantastic canvas for nearly any ingredient or those fantastic clean-out-the-fridge end of week meals.

If you like earthy, rich flavours (and mushrooms, obviously) then you will enjoy this pizza. If you're not a big fan, then I wouldn't bother. I find that truffles and those intense mushroom-y flavours are not for the faint of heart.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Eat Alberta 2011: Slow Rise Pizza Dough

I was very excited to secure a spot in Yann Chartrand's slow rise pizza dough making class at Eat Alberta this year. Yann is a master breadmaker and owner of Treestone Bakery in Edmonton, so he would be an ideal person to teach us to master our own breads or, in this case, pizza doughs. And really... who doesn't love pizza?!

We were breaking the rules and making this dough in our one hour session but were able to take our little dough balls home and give them a bit more time and kneading to bring them through a roughly three day fermentation process. (If we could wait that long...)

Working in the world of bread, often means that the cups and teaspoons need to be set aside... ratios and weights govern your task here. Your flour can be heavier and densier, requiring less to meet a 300g portion in your recipe. Or conversely, your salt could be lighter... If you've ever embarked on bread or pizza dough making with cups and measures and been disappointed with your result, this could be one of the reasons. Now, I don't have a fancy electric scale, but I do use a kitchen scale... and I haven't been disappointed with my results yet. I urge you to grab a kitchen scale (could be a mere $15) when you're next out and about. It will be worth it.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Aperol Spritz

Picture this: You're in an old piazza in Northern Italy. The sun is shining and a gentle breeze is blowing... stirring the air slightly but not disrupting the scene. Waves of beautiful people move through the piazza and their conversations twirl around you like ribbons, dancing over your skin and fading into the distance. Your companion approaches the bar and points at a striking and vibrantly orange-hued beverage spotted in the hand of one of those beautiful people. "Two, please."

As romantic and ridiculously dramatic as that scene may seem to you, it felt just that romantic and ridiculously dramatic to me when I was in Italy last... though instead of two, the order was somewhere in the forties. hahah. We had a wonderful group together to celebrate the wedding of a fantastic couple (and very dear friend of mine).

This was our spritz after a long day of moving... 
no ice, couldn't find the oranges,
but we managed to chill the Prosecco.
It was divine.

Making these spritzes at home was one way to transport myself back to those special days in Northern Italy and -in particular- Verona, without the costly airline ticket. And with the long overdue (enter: cheers of "finally!") arrival of summer, I can think of no better way to celebrate it than with a spritz!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Cara's Cookies... or Vanilla Cream Cookies

Recently, on the wannafoodie facebook page, I shared the photos for some absolutely beautiful Vanilla Cream Cookies... or Cara's Cookies. The Cara of Cara's Cookies is one Cara Cotter... and she is graciously sharing the recipe and a few of her tips here with us!

I met Cara several years ago through our mutual girlfriend, Sarah (another talented woman and the brains behind STUFF). Sarah has a real knack for bringing together smart and talented women. I remember one girls night in particular... mattress on the living room floor to extend our lounge space, sweets and treats including Cara's cupcakes and Sarah's poutine with actual Quebec gravy, and Working Girl on the television... uhhh, maybe you had to be there.

Back to Cara... she is one of those women that make it all seem quite effortless. I don't doubt that a great deal of effort goes into everything that she does but, like I said, she manages to accomplish so much without -seemingly- breaking a sweat. This is one smart cookie. Raising a family of two handsome boys with her husband while growing two incredible businesses while still finding time to bake beautiful little cookies like these (with puff pastry FROM SCRATCH!)... I'm one impressed woman.

So, while these cookies bake away and fill your kitchen with that sweet satisfying aroma, please check out her other two babies... So Pretty Jewelry ("Part of the magic for me is finding gemstones that I haven't seen anywhere else... a certain cut, amazing quality, or a color that catches my eye for the current season's trends. Just like a chef that searches their local market for the best produce in season I'm constantly searching for the finest stones and materials out there.") and glass.ful (hand blown glass tumblers that "can be used as a candleholder, a vase, a drinking glass or give a splash of color to any room"). I think you'll find yourself equally impressed.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Raspberry Maple Croissant Pudding

It's quite funny... when I tweeted about making this delicious little treat, Aviv at Sidewalk Citizen Bakery (and my Momma... though not via Twitter) replied with something that I agreed wholeheartedly with... that is a sin to let croissants go stale!

It certainly wasn't the ideal situation. I love croissants. Plain and cold. Slightly warmed and crisp. With bright, tangy raspberry jam. With marmalade and fresh fruit. I ate croissant after croissant but couldn't quite get through the 12 or so that I bought before they started to go slightly stale. At that point, I decided to embrace the stale and welcome it into my kitchen with open arms... and bathe it in custard.

As is often the case for anything that I make, the inspiration often comes from what I have on hand... raspberries, stale croissants, maple syrup and cream. And a delicious sweet-treat started to take shape.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Eat Alberta 2011: Apple Pie and Pastry Making

One of the first sessions that I experienced at Eat Alberta was the Apple Pie and Pastry Making 101, which featured the pastry talents of Christian Miller. A pie baking aficionado, Christian first learned how to make pies from her father... and has since catapulted that talent into many trademark pies and culinary creations.

While this session did not mark my first attempt at pie making, I figured that there was plenty to learn. All bakers have a slightly different take on how to best create his or her ideal pastry... and just like traditional family recipes that have been passed through generations, typically each is faithful to their version.

I was challenged to "work the lard hard" and produce a crust in a very different way from what I had in the past... yet equally tasty!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Oven Roasted Chickpeas

I was trying to come up with some new snack options for myself without indulging in the office vending machine, which seems strategically placed to mock me as I pass it each time I need to use the ladies' room. Despite its token granola bars, low salt nut packs and 0 calorie beverages, if I am going to purchase an item from the vending machine, it isn't going to be faux-healthy. It is going to be a calorie-laden treat that makes the indulgence worthwhile.

Anyway... I need to curb this indulgence. While only happening once, maybe twice, in a week, that chocolate bar is just a gateway snack item... ready to coax me into a 'balanced' meal of cashews, potato chips, tuna-snack pack and soda. 

Enter: chickpeas. I wasn't in the mood for hummus... so I thought I'd come up with my hummus-inspired version of roasted chickpeas. It's a win.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Eat Alberta 2011: A Celebration of Our Local Food Heroes

Six weeks ago, I posted about the first-ever, and then upcoming, Eat Alberta conference to be held in Edmonton on April 30, 2011. I was so excited about the opportunity to learn and share and connect with fellow food lovers. If I was able to, I would have registered for every session that was to be offered.

That excitement held through until the actual conference day... yesterday... and carried me, enthusiastically, through a very full day.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Backwoods (Bastardized) Banana Cream Pie

You are probably already laughing from the title of this post... and, if you know me at all, you know that I have never seen nor likely know anything of what said "backwoods" are like. I have been a self-proclaimed "inside girl" for many many years now. It's not that I don't like the outside... I have allergies... I whine... I get cold... I whine... hahah. Wow, I'm really giving myself the good sell, aren't I?

The addition of the pup to the zoo has been good for kicking my butt and getting me into the vast "outside world." Don't get me wrong... I'm no backwoods convert and my camping experience will be limited to the queen-size air mattress that I found in the discount bin at Superstore (a steal at $12.40!) but I have come to really love and enjoy my morning (and afternoon and evening) walks with Charlie.

Ok, ok... back to the backwoods (bastardized) banana cream pie. I was tasked with coming up with dessert options for the BF's upcoming backwoods canoe trip. This is beyond the camping that most of us have experience with. They carry everything that they will need for 10 days... themselves... in backpacks... (insert: shocked expression). So, their supplies are dried, dehydrated or freeze-dried within an inch of palatable. There would be absolutely NOTHING better than a sweet-treat at the end of a long day of hiking, portaging and canoeing.

So, for the backwoods campin' man or woman in your life... or, for yourself, if you are so inclined... here is a guide (I can't bring myself to say recipe) for an easy sweet-treat.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Breaducation... Who doesn't *heart* bread?!

There has been so much breaducation in my life of late...

I've taken my own stabs at breadmaking... dreaming of the days where I will nuture and grow my own sourdough starter like a precious child... but loving every leavening moment and yeasty-bready perfume in the interim.

Then there was the Breaducation night (here's the story, courtesy of Edmonton food blogger and photographer Maki of In My Element) at the lovely Sarah's coffee boutique, Luzzara, on Whyte Avenue (Edmonton, AB) featuring the bread-making stylings of Owen of Prairie Mill Bakery (found in both Edmonton and Calgary) and Chris of Partially, it was a great opportunity to learn more about making a great loaf... but also an amazing excuse to eat the amazing loaves produced by each of these gents (some amazing artisan sourdoughs from Chris and my favourite Corn Millet (among others) from Owen). (Lots of links there... but lots of great people for you to "meet"!)

Next up, Momma became a bread making fiend as she prepared for her artisan bread making class that she was teaching in St Albert. As her prep seemed to necessitate baking a loaf a day, I found myself happily immersed in the land of bread.

Bread! Bread! Bread!

Twitter has been amazing for connecting me with everyone that I mentioned above... and that is exactly how I ended up finding my new fave for bread and other bakery goodies, Sidewalk Citizen Bakery. I have been envious of those ordering loaves of bread for delivery to their offices on Tuesday and tantalized by the weekly creations available in their storefront.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Banana, Pecan and White Chocolate Muffins

This recipe started out with mushy, brown, "fragrant" bananas on my counter. Staring me down in the way that overly ripe food does... implying guilt with every pass. "Save me, save me," is the subtitle in their pungent scent. My internal subtitle says, "get it together, Christine... don't you dare toss those bananas into the purgatory that is your freezer... until you throw them out as freezer burned shadows of what they could have been."

I started to think about the banana chocolate chip muffins that my mom used to make and then we used to make as kids. The recipe was so simple and there was very little better than tearing open that creamy muffiny goodness studded with semi sweet chocolate surprises.

Typically, I have the full gamut of options in my baking cupboard. Several different dried fruits, various chocolate chips and chunks, nuts, coconut and so on. Well, it looks as though my store has been pillaged. No standard dark chocolate chunks or chips here! I remember being quite concerted about using up several items but didn't realize that effort would stand between me and my perfect banana chocolate chip muffins now.

Regroup. Reassess. What did I have? I had a giant bag of pecan halfs, another of dried cranberries, smaller bags of peanuts, butterscotch chips, mint chips, white chocolate slabs and chunks... I grabbed the pecans and white chocolate chunks and got back on track.

Tea and a warm banana, pecan and white chocolate muffin

Monday, March 14, 2011

Only one place to be on April 30th... Eat Alberta in Edmonton!

I cannot think of a single better place to be on April 30th... in fact, I think the ONLY place to be on April 30th, if you can do it, is in Edmonton at Eat Alberta, presented by Slow Food Edmonton!

The array of speakers, keynotes and information session are just amazing... Just take a tour through the Eat Alberta site and see. Registration opened today, so move and shake your way over to Sign Up page and expand your culinary horizons.

Hope to see you there!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Pecan Coconut Brittle

I really haven't had much experience with candy. Aside from my annual batch of Chipotle Caramel Corn, a recipe which I can't seem to let go of quite yet, my candy thermometer rarely emerges from its place in my utensil drawer.

This winter, for some odd reason, I could not stop thinking about brittles. Not only would they be a great thing to package up for friends and family but I seem to keep refilling the tin that sits on my hutch... it's the perfect salty-sweet bite when I'm craving something after dinner on Saturday night.

Like so many other recipes, I think this is one of those where you create the candy base and can add to it whatever flavours you are currently enjoying... or those bits of nuts or chocolate or whatever are kicking around your baking cupboard. It's the candy equivalent of a fridge cleaner dinner... it's the pantry cleaner of sweets.

Monday, January 24, 2011

My Ratatouille

After the excessive consumption of the holiday season... too much sugar... plethoras of cheeses and meats and fats... I seem to find myself craving the colour and nutritional merits of proper vegetables.

Momma R either always made ratatouille or the times when it was made were extremely memorable for me. I remember the thick stew of vegetables perfuming the house before being plonked down in front of us, usually matched with a slice of bread. Though, on occasion... if we were so lucky, thick slabs of mozzarella were melted into the top. Lovely and decadent. And so good for you!

I don't think I have ever made Momma R's ratatouille but I haven't been able to get it out my head lately, so I decided to embark on my own ratatouille attempt.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Turkey Pot Pie

I'm not quite at the point yet where I despise my turkey leftovers... I hope you're not at that point yet either or this post will seem wholly unwelcome.

I can usually manage to eat one meal of turkey leftovers before I'm done with the traditional fare... the white meat, no matter how moist, continues to dry out. The potatoes go chalky. Buns stale. And the gravy runs out. At this point, I usually toss the remaining turkey into the freezer while I figure out what to do with the three pounds that remain.

Enter: Turkey Pot Pie. I figured that this was an easy-creamy-dreamy way to get rid of the last bit of turkey. I could freeze the pies for a time when my turkey-love returns. And I could cram these pies chock full of veg and feel virtuous about eating these leftovers... further justifying my breakfast of chocolate.

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