In My kitchen!

Nigella's Old Rag Pie

Dealing with leftover bits in the freezer - in this case that phyllo that is getting crumbly.  Turns out, it's not just for Baklava!

Read More

Sourdough Bread Pudding with Hot Honey Sauce

A side effect of the pandemic is the fascination with sourdough bread owing to an initial shortage of yeast.  But when yeast came back, sourdough just stayed!

Read More

Bourbon Cookies

From the early months of the pandemic, how people began and then continued to cope. The upshot is that bacon and bourbon can help smooth the path! This cookie recipe is a delight!

Read More

Poverty and Pulses

Things are getting tight what with the pandemic and all.  We need to channel our former student selves and remember how we coped without five fresh fruits and/or veggies every day.  

Read More

Tantrums and Perfect Roast Potatoes

Nigella Lawson's gorgeous potatoes roasted in goose fat!  Oh my!  This is the perfect thing to do when you feel like throwing an epic tantrum but you can't because you know it will do you no good, and because you're an adult.  But oh how you wish you could!

Read More

Nigella's Old Rag Pie

Dealing with leftover bits in the freezer - in this case that phyllo that is getting crumbly.  Turns out, it's not just for Baklava!

Read More

Sourdough Bread Pudding with Hot Honey Sauce

A side effect of the pandemic is the fascination with sourdough bread owing to an initial shortage of yeast.  But when yeast came back, sourdough just stayed!

Read More

Bourbon Cookies

From the early months of the pandemic, how people began and then continued to cope. The upshot is that bacon and bourbon can help smooth the path! This cookie recipe is a delight!

Read More

Poverty and Pulses

Things are getting tight what with the pandemic and all.  We need to channel our former student selves and remember how we coped without five fresh fruits and/or veggies every day.  

Read More

Tantrums and Perfect Roast Potatoes

Nigella Lawson's gorgeous potatoes roasted in goose fat!  Oh my!  This is the perfect thing to do when you feel like throwing an epic tantrum but you can't because you know it will do you no good, and because you're an adult.  But oh how you wish you could!

Read More

Isolation and White Beans

I think we’ve all wondered how we’d cope if we had to self-quarantine for fourteen days.  We don’t say “two-weeks” because that has the jaunty ring of holiday.  We say “fourteen days” to emphasize the full weight of the thing.  Actually, about half of the population, those who self-identify as introverted on the spectrum of such, secretly hope for “shelter in place” with the same glee that they look forward to being snowed in.  A pot of tea, a stack of books, a lap full of cats and no fear of social interaction!  Bliss!  But isolation is more fun, somehow, if it’s by choice. These days, the world seems to be closing its doors and shuttering it’s windows. “Social distancing” is the new catch phrase, as we eye other humans with suspicion and hunker down in our homes.  At first we are a bit apprehensive. Soon enough, with everything shutting down, we elevate to fearful.  But then the hoarding frenzy happens and panic creeps in.  Panic goes viral more quickly than any virus. We’re all going to die!  This is the end of life as we know it! We must stock up!  Hand sanitizer is sensible, but we all probably have a jolly good lot of it tucked away in purses and travel bags and drawers we never get around to sorting, because we intended to use it regularly and never quite did. But will we have sufficient toilet paper?  That was the question that caused the stampede. True enough that handy alternatives to toilet paper don’t spring readily to mind, but if it came to that, a serious shortage would lend itself to the most entertaining post-apocalyptic war stories. But let’s not head for the corn husks until we’ve worked our way through the ample supply in the closet. 

If we’re honest, we’ll admit that we have already stocked up. We’re Canadians. Stocking up is in our DNA. The average Canadian could sustain life for fourteen days on the contents of their lolloping large refrigerator alone, never mind the pantry stuffed to the brim with soups and noodles and every type of pasta sauce.  There’s KD and red pepper jelly and a selection of barbecue sauces at the ready for any pulled pork emergency. And we haven't even cracked open the chest freezer!  Bring on the apocalypse! 

That’s why I had to chuckle at the recent news story about folks hoarding dried beans, lest it come to that. I feel confident in assuring all who will listen, that it will not come to that.  Not only would a few weeks of working our way through our already accumulated stockpile be a good idea, whether forced or not, but the store would be happy to deliver – perhaps to the end of the driveway if quarantine is actually an issue - at the wave of a credit card.  We are not without resources. 

But should you have joined the stampede, a dried bean can be a wonderful discovery.  They can bubble away in a pot on the stove while you pour another cup of tea, pet your cat and turn the page on this virus story. 

Italian White Beans

INGREDIENTS

1 pound dried white beans such as Great Northern, Cannelini or Navy (about 2 ½ cups)

12 cups water

4 cloves garlic peeled and crushed

5 fresh sage leaves

1 bay leaf

Kosher salt and pepper to taste

4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil high quality

INSTRUCTIONS

Rinse beans then place in large pot and cover with cold water. Set aside to soak for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Place beans, water, garlic, sage, bay leaf and 2 Tbsp. oil in a heavy saucepan. Cover and slowly bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, about 1 hour. Gently simmer, stirring occasionally, until beans are tender but not mushy, about 1-2 hours more. (This is actually a perfect chore for that Instant Pot!). 

Remove from heat, set aside, and allow beans to cool in the cooking liquid for 15 minutes. Season well with salt and pepper.

 

To serve, drain the beans and drizzle with remaining 2 Tbsp. olive oil. You can also serve the beans on crostini as an appetizer.

OR, make this delish dip from delish.com:

White Bean Dip with Parsley Oil

INGREDIENTS

1 c. dried white beans

4 clove garlic

1 sprig thyme

1 bay leaf

3/4 c. extra-virgin olive oil

salt

Freshly ground pepper

1 c. flat-leaf parsley leaves

1 c. celery leaves

Flatbread or pita chips

DIRECTIONS

In a medium saucepan, cover the beans with 2 inches of water. Add the garlic, thyme, and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Simmer the beans over low heat, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 2 hours. Add more water as necessary to keep the beans covered by 2 inches. (Again, or Instant Pot). 

Drain the beans and reserve the garlic and 1/3 cup of the cooking liquid. Transfer the beans, garlic, cooking liquid, and 1/4 cup of the olive oil to a food processor and puree. Season with salt and pepper.

In a mini food processor, combine the parsley and celery leaves with the remaining 1/2 cup of olive oil and puree. Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer the white bean dip to a shallow bowl and make a well in the center of the dip with the back of a spoon. Pour the parsley oil into the well and serve with flatbread or pita chips.

Now you can’t tell me that we don’t know how to weather a pandemic with panache! 

Apprehension, worry, fear, panic, hoarding, cooking, eating, reading, relaxing. We’ve got this!  

Read More

Broccoli Soup & Pizza Dough

Soup and pizza and food bits management!
Read More

Pandemic and Bourbon Bacon Chocolate Chunk Cookies

When the going gets tough, isolated in a pandemic, the time comes for a chocolate chunk, bourbon, bacon cookie to brighten those dark corners!

Read More

Parasite - Ram Don

The movie Parasite was indeed a winner, but so was the dish served to the ravenous family!  Ram-don noodles with steak.  Who wouldn't want to give that a go right after seeing the film?

Read More

Cauliflower bread

This blog post is all bout eating healthy.  Apparently you can make bread with cauliflower.  Who know?

Read More

Soup Season

Make a nice, easy soup out of a butternut squash, broth and whatever you find in the fridge.  Maybe add curry paste.

Read More

Instant Pot Mac & Cheese

Between the battle that is Christmas and the post-Christmas battle that is weight loss, there is a brief day or two to simply exhale, and enjoy a bit of comfort.  That is the moment for Instant Pot Mac & Cheese!

Read More

Turnip Puff (pre-Christmas thoughts)

The lowly turnip (aka rutabaga) gets its moment to shine at the Christmas feast

Read More

The Dutch Baby!

It's a big, fluffy pancake that can be dolled up either sweet, with fruit and jam and whipping cream and such, or savoury, with meat and veg and herbs galore.  Your imagination is your only limit!

Read More

Vegan Pizza

Some home cooking is easy to modify when vegans come to town.  Pizza!  Simply eliminate the cheese!

Read More

Fluffy Pumpkin Buttermilk Pie

 A Google of “pumpkin pie for those who don’t like pumpkin pie” yielded this beauty which will impress all but the most resistant of the pumpkin pie averse. 

Fluffy Pumpkin Buttermilk Pie from smittenkitchen.com. 

Read More

Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole

There are times when doing everything "from scratch" is not required.  One of those occasions is Thanksgiving when you are swinging a complex dinner for a crowd and you don't have staff.  Consider this excellent Mashed Potato Casserole with boxed potato flakes!

Read More

High School ála Goldenrod on Biscuits

High school Home Ec. back in the day taught us essentials like "White Sauce" and recipes we despised like Eggs á la Goldenrod.  Turns out, it's a classic and when not being forced to become happy homemakers, it is really quite delicious.  The secret is in the sauce!

Read More

First day of school - Pot Roast

The first day of school is the first day of the queen of comfort food, the pot roast.  Just be sure to use a cut that is not too lean.  Other than that, it's hard to go wrong.  We all remember coming home from school to the smell of this deliciousness as our soft landing.

Read More

Cinnamon Bread

Sometimes the lure of a traditional recipe is just what's needed.  Though we don't all have a basic bread recipe that we can simply modify, if we did, the base bread of this beauty would be a good one to choose!

Read More

Zucchini, Cheddar Cheese & Chive Buttermilk Quick Bread

It's that time of year when friends present friends with zucchinis the size of their thighs.  Compost them, my friends, or , if you just don't have the hears, perhaps this quick bread.  

Read More

Chimichurri Grilled Chicken Salad with Peaches and Sweet Potatoes

Time to take note of what your family likes and think of serving those things in a new and interesting way.  

Read More

Gnocchi

Time to assess the kitchen cupboards.  How many of these things do we actually use...anymore?  Though the gnocchi board still has predetermining of place in my kitchen

Read More

Funeral Potatoes

The thing about funerals is that, unlike holiday meals where the hostess is expected to do it all, it's suddenly ok to pitch in and bring something.  Funeral potatoes are a perennial favourite, and Three-bean salad smacks of tradition and family.

Read More

Pie Crust!

The perfect pie crust recipe and the importance of calibrating your oven!

Read More

Serving Boards

Choose a theme.  Gather a variety of food!  Relax and enjoy!

Read More

Italian Sausage and Tortellini Soup

The future is looking bright, but is it really necessary to have food kits delivered to our kitchens when something as delicious as this tortellini soup is so easy?

Read More

Chicken Condon Bleu Casserole

Although casseroles have fallen out of favour in recent decades, they can still be a home cook's trusty friend!

Read More

Farro & Cumin Roasted Carrots and Tahini

Tahini and Farro are finding their way into our kitchens!!

Read More

Chicken Tikka Masala

Reflections on how comfort foods hop borders and make themselves at home in our kitchens.

Read More

Fast Food and Cinnamon Buns!

Sometimes it's time for fast food.  

Other times you have time for a lovely, pillowy yeasted dough and the joy that is Cinnamon Buns!

Read More

Jambalaya & Sauerkraut Soup

Jambalaya AND a nice Sauerkraut Soup!

Along with a rant about transported vegetables!

Read More

Sous-Vide Prime Rib!

What is better than a tender, perfectly cooked Prime Rib?  Use your Sous-Vide guarantee perfect results every time!

Read More

Gravy!

Make perfect gravy every time!

Read More

Mashed potatoes in the Instant Pot

Mashed potatoes are divinely creamy prepared in the Instant Pot!

Read More

Incorporating Kale

Kale got to be a bit overdone there for awhile, but let's not throw it out as "yesterday's trend".  Try incorporating it into just about any pasta dish for a splash of colour and a dash of nutrition!

Read More

Classic Lasagna

Lasagna is wonderful.  The classic.  It takes time.  We tend to take so many shortcuts that we lose sight of the glory of the true recipe.  Sometimes it's best to take the time!  It's worth it!

Read More

Cricket powder!

The world is changing and we have to change with it or be left on the shelf.  To try cricket powder, you only have to be brave once.  High diving board!

Read More

Sous Vide Chicken and Beef

Sous Vide sounds fancy, but actually, it is a wonderful secret for busy folks on the go.  This is primarily because it is so forgiving.  If you are an hour late, your roast beef will just be a bit more tender, and still at just your preferred degree of doneness!

Read More

Dinner Salads

How to assemble the essential components of:

.Base

.Veggie/fruit

.Protein

.Topping 

.Bonus

To create a nutritious, delicious, dinner salad!

Read More

Corn Season with Fritters

Whatever your family techniques and traditions, the main thing is that you eat corn until it’s coming out of your ears, because, as we well know, corn season won’t last! Fall is just around the corner! Seize these lovely days!

Read More

Instant Pot Breakfast

This recipe - or collection of suggestions - hopefully will open your eyes to the many useful variations of the types of food we think of cooking in the Instant Pot.

Read More

Simple Pickling

Serve these pickles as part of an appetizer spread with fresh tomatoes, olives, flatbread, and hummus or baba ghanoush. They’re also tasty alongside grilled meats. finecooking.com

Read More

Instant Pot Pho Ga

In Vietnam, pho is eaten morning, noon, and night. The flavorful broth is traditionally cooked for hours to achieve a full-bodied flavor, but with a pressure cooker, you can enjoy this rich and complex soup in a fraction of the time. epicurious.com

Read More

Artisan Bread in Five

This delicious bread is a combination of the master recipe of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day and a focaccia idea from Martha Stewart!  So good!

Read More

Discovering Farro

At some point we all get tired of the same old starches and grains.  Potatoes, rice, pasta.  Let's get a little experimental and find out some of the secrets that other cultures have known for centuries!

Read More

Dealing with dodgy vegetables

Option A:
Discard and resolve to do better nest week.

Option B:
Soup!

Option C:
Dog food!

Read More

Bearnaise

Bearnaise is just a tarted up Hollandaise really.  But it can elevate meats and fish to an astonishing new level!

Read More

Spring into Asparagus!

Spring is a time for asparagus.  Wizened winter asparagus is better than no asparagus, but spring asparagus - oh my!

Read More

Madeleines

Thoughts about Late Onset Attention Deficit Disorder and the need to slow it down!  Read Proust!  Make Madeleines!

Read More

Pot Roast!

A lovely memory of my childhood was of Mother's Pot Roast done with her terrifying, death defying pressure cooker!  These days, however, we can recreate the deliciousness without the anxiety!

Read More

Chicken Piccata

Although I made this recipe in the Instant Pot, it would, of course, be easily adapted to a slow cooker or oven.

Read More

Raw Beet and Sweet Potato salad

A recipe can be a gift, but it can also be a trap

Read More

Pumpkin Pie Spice and Bone Broth

A rather negative take on Christmas perhaps - too much Pumpkin Pie Spice and too many goodies!

Read More

Bigos - or what to do with Sour Cabbage!

The national dish of Poland, this dish, or variations thereof, are the comfort food of many slavic folk - or so I'm told.

Read More