Friday, December 4, 2009

sweet pot pie

Work with what you got! When you don't have Yukon gold, reach for the orangey sweet things instead. The dish turns out sweeter than your traditional Sheppard's pie and the texture of mashed sweet potatoes is much softer than your regular starchy white kind, so play things up with Delicious spices and herbs. enjoy
1. saute onions, garlic, ginger, and chillies
2. add lean ground beef and herbs. brown.
3. boil sweet potatoes, mash with fresh ginger and butter
4. layer in baking dish
5. top with panko bread crumbs for added texture/crunch

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

pizza and homemade Pho'

Let this lovely steammy bowl of broth and veggies cure your chilled bones this winter. The quick short version: Add vermicelli rice noodles, spinach, thinly sliced carrots, onions, red peppers and mushroom, fresh chilli and ginger, lemon, S&P and fresh herbs to a chicken or vegetable broth of your choice. it takes as little as 10 minutes. The pizza on the other hand, was bought, defrosted and baked according to box instructions. enjoy.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

super and mighty - NO FLU STEW

As soon as november hits i start making stews full of mighty flu fighting powers. Things like garlic, ginger, lemon, chillies, lentils, carrots, spinach and tomatoes are packed with super nutrients, so why not heat them all up together and enjoy daily. ... p.s. I've never had the flu

breakfast with.... mom

bite size crab cakes

mix in bowl: 1 egg, two cans of crabmeat, finely chopped veggies (i used spinach and red peppers and sautéed them a little to soften), Panko breadcrumbs, herbs (dill and parsley), mustard, mayo, lemon juice, S&P, and anything else you want to add. You want the batch to feel moist, but to stick together well. This time around I tried baking them instead of pan frying. (a little dryer, but much healthier!!!). enjoy

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I used to work in a british pub and was always curious about "liver and onions" and "bangers and mash". Since there was a "bag-o-liver-" that came stuffed inside our thanksgiving turkey, I decided to experiment a little. I sauteed onions (duh), garlic, and fresh parsley until tender, added in liver, salt & pepper and served it with toasty ciabatta, roasted red peppers and good ol' horseradish. My parents enjoyed the little thanksgiving appetizer very much. Me on the other hand, just checked for taste and watched them enjoy instead.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

super grain: red and white quinoa

Pronounced "keen-wa" , this miracle whole grain has more good press then brown rice. It's full of protein and iron and comes equipped with a bite/crunch/pop of goodness. Make sure to rinse the grain before boiling, and be sure not to over cook or it will turn to mush! have fun. This variety mixed two colours inside one box....a lovely change from traditional quinoa.

1. sautee veggies and goodies that you love
2. add suggested water and quinoa (according to box & cooking insructions)
3. let simmer and absorb all your favourite flavours
4. serve in a pretty dish.
5.'s good for you

mini chicken meatballs

From the same batch of ground chicken below, I also created 24 little meatballs for a spaghetti dinner a few days from now. I simply rolled out these itsy bitsy balls and seared them, thus making them ready to plop into a tomato sauce for another meal during the week. so lovely...

chicken meatloaf....mmmmmm

from 2 packages of ground chicken, I made 1 chicken meatloaf and 24 mini chicken meatballs....which worked itself out for two easy and budget friendly dinners.

1. 2 packages ground chicken
2. add sauteed veggies (spinach, red peppers, onions, etc)
3. add 2 eggs and 1 cup bread crumbs
4. salt and pepper of course
5. spread half the mixture into a small meatloaf baking dish lined with parchment paper

Monday, September 21, 2009

jamie oliver love affair: with spaghetti fritters

jamie oliver love affair: with spaghetti tettrizini

Today I experimented with Jamie's italian cookbook (thanks Chris and Maria!!!) Quite evidently, this is not the healthiest dish, but if jamie makes it, well then it's alright with me. (ingredients: chicken, cream, parmesan and pasta.... yum)

celery and beets, nuts and greens....

Simplicity: Toss celery, beets, greens, red onion, and roughly chopped chestnuts with a sprinkle of parmesan and olive oil/lemon dressing, and of course S&P to taste. The crunchy celery sliced on a "bias" was the highlight of this salad, it added so much brightness to the dense falvours of nuts and beets. yum

new fancy plate #1

This one is "honeycomb". it made my quesadilla and dip that much fancier. thanks Laura, I've never had such an original and interesting plate collection. You're right, they truly add new dimension to my food photos....

Thursday, September 17, 2009

itsy bitsty tini weenie banana flax muffins

These marvelous mini muffins are perfect for breakfast or on the run. They are filled with healthy things like bananas, ground flax seed, whole wheat flour, non fat yogurt and nuts.
I found this recipe here. but i modified it a bit by adding in a handful of rolled oats and placed ONE big walnut on top instead of crumbling them into the batter. I also sprinkled some flax seeds on top to give hints of what's inside. enjoy!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

pumpernickel mushroom bruschetta

Who said bruschetta had to be topped with tomatoes? Today, I decided to slice up some mushrooms, saute them in olive oil, chillies, and fresh chives instead. I pre-baked slices of pumpernickel bread until crispy, drizzled them with olive oil, and lay my mushrooms down politely on top. I took this photo before I topped them with cheese and put the back in the oven to melt.... but they looked so good I couldn't wait to eat them up.... good thing i got a photo before they were all gone.

grilled chicken skewers and summer salad

This is my favourite summer salad!!! It's made with thinly sliced cucumbers and radishes combined with chives from the garden, lemon juice, S&P and a dollop of plain non-fat yogurt. Soooo fresh and soooo lovely, I learnt this one from my mom. Served with a simple red pepper, onion, chicken skewer. If you don't eat meat....simply exchange chicken for tofu cubes or simply skewer more red peppers. mmmmmm

Thursday, August 20, 2009

roasted chickpeas, beats, and crumbled walnuts...

this was the nuttiest dish EVER!!!  When you roast chickpeas they turn into a peanut!!! This salad turned out crunchy, and full bodied.  Thank goodness for the fresh beats, herbs and added moisture from a lemon to brighten things up.  Also, in order to moisten things up and play with texture, I also added in some fresh chickpeas as well.  mmmmm

1. tossed chickpeas and already boiled beats in olive oil and roasted till crunchy
2. dressed in fresh herbs and lemon juice, plus a handful of crumbled walnuts and fresh chickpeas.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

mini wanton cups...mmmmm...crunch!!

I've seen this little wanton cups EVERYWHERE.... so by no means did I come up with this concept. Regardless, I was delighted to discover how easy this task was, even though they look like beautifully crafted florets.  These little guys will definitely be served up as an appetizer at the next party I host. 

1. pre-bake wanton sheets in muffin tray for 10 minutes (I used a MINI muffin tray and I brushed it with olive oil first).
2. also....lightly brush the tops of wanton sheets to help brown the edges
3. bake for about 7-9 minutes @400.
4. When golden brown, stuff wanton cups with filling of your choice
(note: if using meat, make sure it's cooked at this point)
5. throw back into the oven for 5 minutes.

filling:  sauteed in olive oil: onions, chili, fresh ginger, fresh herbs, orange and red peppers, Chinese cabbage, spinach & arugula, 1 diced Roma tomato, sesame seeds, S&P. 

yum. crunch. serve with a mixed green salad, or as bite size appetizers.

crazy crab cakes...what a mess!!!

I had some difficulty keeping them from falling apart, but the ones that stuck together were delicious. Here's what I did:

1. emptied 2 cans of crab meat into bowl
2. mixed in 1tbs mayo, 1 tbs Dijon mustard, fresh herbs (lots of dill and parsley), 1 egg, some breadcrumbs and lemon juice
3. mixed in red peppers and spinach (lightly sauteed first) and corn (cut straight off a boiled cob)
4. made little patties by hand and dipped each one into egg, breadcrumbs, and repeat again.
5. placed into hot pan with olive oil, pressing them down a little with the spatula to flatten
6. lightly frying until crunchy and golden brown.  (I guess you can bake them too!!!)

Thursday, August 6, 2009

ginger/dill vegetables in a phyllo tart

This tart is perfect for using up the veggies in your fridge, and the frozen remainder of phillo pastry in your freezer..... use any kind of herbs/spices you love, and feel free to top with fresh cheeses if you want.  

1. used the lovely mandolin to create thin slices of min red potatoes, zucchini, and carrots. (had to hand sliced the tomatoes). 
2. blanche the potatoes for a few minutes (since they need the longest to cook) to even out the cooking time between veggies.
3. chop up lots of ginger, garlic, Spanish onions, dill, and parsley
4. saute potatoes in herb mixture just to coat
5. placed about 7 sheets of phillo pastry in a tart dish, sprinkled with olive oil, (tear off the access).
6. layer veggies in circles, according to colour, or however you wish to decorate...
7. top with breadcrumbs (didn't have any, so simply used the blender to chop up the two end pieces of a loaf of rye bread)
8. drizzle some olive oil on top
9. bake for 30 minutes (400), and then broil on low for an additional 5 minutes to brown


Saturday, July 25, 2009

pretty appetizer table setting...


handmade California rolls: avocado, crab, cucumber

assorted platter: salami, olives, roasted red peppers, pate

assorted platter: cheese, ricotta, brie (with sweet pepper jelly) and grapes of course

fresh bread and homemade white bean pure

assorted wraps: purchased (tsk tsk).

(garlic hot sauce and smoked salmon with lemon in the middle)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

beets chickpeas zucchini fresh ricotta cheese and summer peas

A rainbow of colour and all the ingredients rhyme.  yummy!!!!  not sure how these ingredients came together, but they are a few of my favourite things.  I spent $2.60 at the grocery store on a can of chick peas, three little beets, a handful of sweet peas in their pods, and 1 zucchini) the garnish I had at home.  So simple and so fresh. more rainbow health bowls to come. 

1. boil beets until tender/yet still somewhat firm - chop into little cubes
2. blanch chickpeas and sweet summer peas
3. grill zucchini or broil in the oven
4. garnish with fresh herbs, lemon juice, chili, ginger, and a little crumble of fresh ricotta cheese
5. serve in a bright bowl of goodness, or on a perfectly white plate for added contrast
6. enjoy

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

light and bright; summer seafood

Seafood is perfect for summer, either indoors or out!!! It cooks fast and easy. It's bright. It's light. It can be topped with nothing but lemon and herbs and always delicious! So..go enjoy some seafood. Because it's relatively expensive, enjoy this as a once in a while treat....and split a 2pound lobster with someone you love for extra romance...hehehehe. enjoy.
No recipe here. Simply boil a 2pound lobster in very salted water for 13 minutes. and saute shrimp with lemon and herbs.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

sweet potato quesadillas and soy bean salad

1. saute onions, garlic, chili and fresh herbs in some olive oil - set aside
2. peel and boil sweet potato, drain
3. add sauteed ingredients, 4 tbsp of plain yogurt, juice from lime, S&P and fresh herbs
4. mash mash mash until smooth
5. spread SwPot mixture on 1/2 of tortilla flat bread, fold and close, pressing down for evenness
6. pan fry on both sides till crispy, cut into triangles
7. add plain yogurt for dipping, and fresh soybeans (tossed in lime and herbs) on the side
8. enjoy
(hint; you can keep a few folded quesadillas covered in saran wrap to fry up fresh for another day, that way you will have a quick snack and it will be fresh and crispy as opposed to soggy)