Tag Archives: Food

Brown Sugar Shortbread

27 Nov

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Like it or not the holiday season is upon us. Yes I already have my tree and decorations up and I know it’s not even December. My excuse is the hubby is gone to sea until the week or so before Christmas so I wanted to decorate while he was home. The holidays to me are about family, friends, snuggling up watching old christmas movies (national lampoons is my ultimate favorite!), and baking up a storm. This years first holiday baked good is brown sugar shortbread. This is a super easy recipe that any one can do. Just a few ingredients and some time is all that is needed. It is not overly sweet but melt in your mouth buttery. Perfect for those cold nights that roll in from over the ocean.

Brown Sugar Shortbread (or Scottish shortbread)
*recipe adapted from Bake with Anna Olsen

3/4 cup room temp butter (unsalted)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Grease a removable bottom baking dish or you can use a greased pan. Mix butter and brown sugar together until fluffy. The key to shortbread is to make sure you really mix the butter and sugar together for a good few minutes. It ensures the shortbread sticks together and also breaks apart nicely when cooked. Add the flour and salt together in a separate bowl then add to the butter-sugar mixture slowly until a crumbly mixture. Pour mixture into greased pan and press mixture together until even throughout. Poke holes with a fork all over shortbread. Cook in oven for a whole hour until lightly browned. Cut into squares or pie shapes while still warm. Enjoy!

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Clean out your pantry Granola

6 Nov

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It may be the nesting going on in my house or maybe it was the rainy day but my pantry has never looked so good. I was in Staples the other day looking for the perfect pen. Found it thanks to my friend Harp. Good old bic fine point ink pen. As I was walking around I spotted a whole wall of Martha Stewart organizational products. I had to buy the labels, I couldn’t help myself. I’m a sucker for stationary. As soon as I got home I went crazy and took everything off the shelves, cleaned them off, and labeled those jars. I noticed I had a lot of random bags of nuts and seeds and fruit. If you have never made granola before you should. It’s a lot healthier when you know what’s in it and you can control the ingredients. I don’t have any strict measurements for you here. I just eyeball and do what tastes good. Here’s my list of what went in this lastest batch and it was damn tasty.

First I melted this in a saucepan over med-low heat:

coconut oil
peanut butter
honey
agave syrup

I poured this over a few cups of quick oats then toasted it in the oven on a tray until golden brown.
I made another small batch of the melted sauce and poured it over a mix of the following:

almonds
coconut flakes
chia seeds
flax seeds
pecans
walnuts
pumpkin seeds

I then toasted this mixture in the oven until golden brown. When done I mixed with the oats and let cool. Once cooled I threw in a handful or so of dried cranberries. Easy and good for you! I usually eat mine over yogurt. This is also something to keep in mind for handmade gifts over the holidays!

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Tomatillos!

25 Sep

A couple of produce packs ago I received a handful of tomatillos and some serious hot yellow peppers. They have been sitting on my counter for a couple weeks staring at me every time I pass by. I’ve never cooked with tomatillos before so I was a little unsure of what to do. If you didn’t know, a tomatillo is a green tomato type fruit that originated in Mexico. It grows with a papery husk that you remove before cooking. It has a high pectin content so it is suited to jams and preserves as well. One of the most common application of this little green wonder is in salsa verde.

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First step is to remove all the husks from your tomatillos. I cut mine in half and placed them on a baking sheet with onions, jalapenos, garlic and a hot yellow pepper. I sprinkled salt, pepper and cumin as well I drizzled olive oil over them. Turn your oven onto the broiler setting and place the tray on the bottom rack. Parchment paper burned too quick so I recommend to use foil instead.
Watch closely and take the tray out of the oven when everything looks charred, about 7-10 mins.
Take out and let cool a bit. I removed the seeds from the yellow pepper but left the jalapenos intact. Throw everything into a food processor and pulse.

This salsa is HOT! But not in a mouth-burning-I-can’t-feel-my-tongue-anymore hot. It’s a lingering heat which I really enjoyed. Feels good to cook with a new ingredient and branch out a little. Try it, you will love this!

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Tomatillo Salsa

6-7 tomatillos
2 small jalapenos
1 onion
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 hot yellow pepper
olive oil
salt and pepper
ground cumin

Fall Bucket List

21 Sep

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I almost accomplished my summer bucket list. The few things I didn’t do like the public gardens and riding my bike to the beach was really just laziness on my part. So here is my fall bucket list. I give myself just until the end of November because I consider the beginning of December winter around these parts. Here’s to not being lazy and really embracing my life and getting out there!

~carve a pumpkin with toothpick teeth
~go to a haunted maze in a corn field
~make a real chai tea from scratch
~complete my 5k for Run for the Cure
~pick valley apples and make applesauce
~go to the maritime fall fair
~make pumpkin spiced donuts (link from yesterday and why i need a donut pan)
~host 3rd annual thanksgiving feast with a deep fried turkey
~see the leaves change colour in the valley

It’s also my handsome hubbys birthday today!!! He is currently out west for work for 3 months so I can’t celebrate with him today. Love you hubs! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! xo

Samosa!

18 Sep

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I helped my friend Harp make about 140 samosas last week to sell at the night market this past weekend. I’ve wanted to learn how to make these for a long time. It’s pretty easy but very time consuming. There were four of us and that helped make it go by fast. I don’t have a recipe yet but I wanted to share some pictures. They are so tasty. She sells these and other authentic Indian food through her website here

Salad of amazingness

11 Sep

That is not a word but I don’t know how else to describe this. After the gym I am always so hungry but low on patience. I want something easy, fast to make, and healthy. I didn’t just kill myself at the gym to come home and eat some crap. I love balsamic vinegar and I am lucky enough to live close to an olive oil tasting bar that has 40!!!! different types of oil and vinegars. This place is amazing. You can actually taste test every single different flavor they offer. The last time I was there I got a blackberry vinegar. I have it on every salad I make and this salad is no exception. I ate two bowls and almost licked the bowl clean. This is real life..this is what happens when I’m left alone. I’m out of the vinegar now which is sad but that just means a trip to the tasting bar is in my near future!

http://www.hydrostonemarket.ca/shoppages/liquidgold.html

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Here’s what is in my mix:

Cucumber
Tomato (mixed from my produce pack)
Pecans
Goat cheese
Blackberry Vinegar
Salt

Is it wrong I want a third bowl?

Sunday Canning

3 Sep

I have been getting the most beautiful fresh vegetables and fruit from my local produce pack. Thanks to Abundant Acres I have a full fridge every week. This past week I had two large bags of mixed tomatoes. I usually make bruschetta out of them but i wanted to try something different today. I recently got my hands on the Food in Jars cookbook. This book is so great! I’ve been following her blog for a couple years now. I like her style because she makes canning accessible as well as her batches are smaller. Instead of the usual canning recipes that make a dozen or so jars, her recipes make about 4-6.

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http://www.foodinjars.com/2010/09/tomato-jam/

I can’t wait to try this over some warm melty cheese and crackers.

Also if you want to support your local food system try a produce pack. It’s really not that more expensive if you eat a lot of vegetables weekly. I share mine with a friend so there is less waste at the end of the week. Here’s a link to the farm that I buy from.

http://abundantacres.org/