Recipe Search

Cottage Cheese Waffles


The other day I looked through my stash of handwritten recipes and came across this one from long ago. I decided to make these waffles on a Saturday night when I didn't know what to make for supper. They were so delicious, airy, and light. I will be making them again. Next time I will make the sweet white sauce that's usually served with waffles in our household. Our granddaughter asked 'Grandma you didn't make white sauce'? The unthinkable in her books!
Add fresh fruit and bacon and you have a delicious breakfast, lunch, or supper.
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons oil 
  • 1/2 cup creamed cottage cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  1. Beat eggs, buttermilk, oil, cottage cheese, and vanilla until well blended. 
  2. Add dry ingredients and mix just until combined, the mixture will be somewhat on the thin side.
  3. Cook in waffle iron until done..they will be golden in color.
  4. Serve with maple syrup or white sauce. 
  5. Yield: 4 waffles

Six Week Bran Muffins


You might be thinking this is the old original recipe that we've all had for years...and you are right! Sometimes it's good to pull out an old favourite and jazz it up a bit, or bake it in different shapes and sizes. This is a large recipe, but disappears faster than the 6 weeks it can last. Adding dates to this old standby makes them even more moist and tasty.
I use Anneliese's Sticky Sauce when I want to make some of them a little sweeter and stickier.
Once you've made the muffin mix, you can bake up just several or a whole pan at a time. Try poking a few frozen blueberries into the batter just before baking or grating some orange rind into the batter.
All variations freeze well.
  • 3 cups bran buds (I use All Bran Cereal, Kellogg's brand)
  • 3 cups bran flakes
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 cups buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 5 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups dates, chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons water
  1. Stir bran buds and flakes together in a large glass bowl. Pour bowling water over them and allow to sit.
  2. In another large bowl cream butter and sugars together. Add eggs, buttermilk and molasses and beat well.
  3. Add bran mixture and mix well.
  4. Measure all dry ingredients into another bowl and stir to combine.
  5. Add dry mixture to to bran and buttermilk mixture and stir or mix to combine.
  6. Put chopped dates and last amount of water into a microwavable bowl. Cook in microwave for 1 minute. Take out and stir well. Mixture will get pasty. You may need to put it back in for 30 seconds. Don't over cook as they will burn. 
  7. Add cooked date mash to batter and stir well to combine.
  8. Store whole mixture in a well sealed container and place in refrigerator. Give the mix a little stir when you are ready to bake some muffins. If adding in some extra fruit or zest, put some of the mix into a small bowl and stir in the extras. The mix will be good for up to 6 weeks if kept well sealed and in refrigerator. 
  9. Choose the size of tins. Spray lightly if not using a liner. For regular size muffins, fill cups to 2/3 full and bake at 400ºF for 15-18 minutes. Ovens vary so check with a toothpick. If using mini muffin tins, bake at same temperature but check at 10 minutes. 
Sticky Sauce method: (for 12 regular size muffins)
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Put all ingredients except for vanilla in a small sauce pan. 
  2. Stirring constantly bring to a light bowl until sugar has melted. 
  3. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
  4. Grease muffin tins and then divide mixture between 12 muffin cups. (these don't work with paper liners)
  5. Put muffin batter right on top of the sticky sauce. Filling to 3/4 full. 
  6. Bake as directed above. Remove sticky muffins upside down to a cooling rack immediately after baking. 
This is where I bake and family and friends young and older gather. As you can see it's small and cozy, but spills over into a casual living space with a cozy fire place...and yes, you can take your 'cup of stuff and a thing' into there and put your feet up, or sit at the island. I may put you to work with a cutting board and sharp knife if you sit there. 



Seafood Crepes


This is a perfect dish for date night.  The crepes can be divided between individual gratin dishes. The flavour of the seafood is delicious in the creamy white sauce. The recipe can be easily doubled to serve company. 

Seafood Crepes  
  • 1 cup all flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk (more if needed)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Butter as needed to cook crepes

Seafood Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 portion salmon
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup small shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 cup small bay scallops
  • 1/3 cup Gruyere cheese, shredded
  • 3 tablespoons fresh grated parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Instructions

  1. Whisk the eggs in a medium bowl. Add the flour, the milk, (a bit at a time) vegetable oil, and salt and begin whisking. Pour in the remaining milk.  Add additional milk if needed. The batter should be like heavy cream. Refrigerate for one hour.
  2. Heat a 9-inch non-stick pan over medium heat. Add a teaspoon of butter to the pan and then ladle about 1/4 cup batter into the pan,  tilting the pan to evenly coat bottom. Cook until the top surface is no longer wet and then flip over and cook for another 10 seconds.  Stack crepes on a plate.
  3.  Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon butter. When the butter is melted, add the salmon to the pan and cook on each side until browned and the center is nearly done. Set aside on a plate.
  4. In the same saucepan, melt the 2 tablespoons butter, and add the flour, stirring to combine. Whisk in the milk slowly to combine and continue to whisk over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. 
  5. Add the shrimp and scallops and simmer just until the seafood is opaque. ( a few minutes) Add the parmesan and half the Gruyere cheese.  Add half of the chives and parsley. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.
  6. Break up the salmon and divide between crepes. Add a few tablespoons of the seafood to a crepe, Roll it up and transfer to a greased baking dish or put two in individual baking dishes.  
  7. Top with the last of the sauce and sprinkle with the remaining cheese and bake at 350 F until the top is browned and the sauce is bubbly.  Top with the last of the chopped herbs. 

Makes 8 crepes

Bread for the Journey


In the midst of uncertainty, confusion and loss
this picture depicts a simple beauty that still remains.
The only explanation I can find is that
she has made deposits into her spiritual well being.
She has filled her mind with hymns and spiritual songs
from the time she was a youth,
from before I was born,
and they remain as a final blessing to her now.

As I sat beside her last Sunday, singing the following hymn,
I asked her if she was enjoying this.
Her responses to other things may not always make sense,
but her response now was,
"Who wouldn't like that song?"

So ... for that reason I have to share it.

  1. I come to the garden alone,
    While the dew is still on the roses,
    And the voice I hear falling on my ear
    The Son of God discloses.
    • Refrain:
      And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
      And He tells me I am His own;
      And the joy we share as we tarry there,
      None other has ever known.
  2. He speaks, and the sound of His voice
    Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
    And the melody that He gave to me
    Within my heart is ringing.
  3. I’d stay in the garden with Him,
    Though the night around me be falling,
    But He bids me go; through the voice of woe
    His voice to me is calling.
  4. Charles A. Miles, 1913

This leaves me with one question:
What kind of deposit am I making 
in the memory bank of my mind?

"How blessed is the person who does not take the advice of the wicked ...
but he delights in the Lord's instruction."
Psalm 1:1-2


Flashback Friday ~ Baron of Beef



This year we are in the middle of renovations in our kitchen.  So I quickly made this baron of beef dish, before my appliances were removed, knowing that I would have the perfect leftovers for the following week. All I needed to do was to warm up the dish in my microwave.   Little did I know that we would be off skiing and it became the perfect supper to serve to the family when we all arrived home to my daughter's house.  If you check back you can see that this has always been a favorite over the past years.

Baron of Beef
  • Sirloin Tip Roast
  • 3-5 pounds
  • dry mustard
  • 1 package dry onion soup mix
  1. Rub with dry mustard/onion soup mix
  2. Put it in the oven to roast and add some water
  3. Roast approximately 2 1/2 hours. (depending on the size)
  4. When the meat has cooled, slice it very thin and layer it in the same roasting pan.

Sauce
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Worcester sauce
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced onions
  • 2 tablespoons soya sauce  
  1. Blend these items together in a small bowl.
  2. Layer this sauce over the meat.
  3. Cook for 1 hour in the oven at 350° F
Tip:  When the roast is finished cooking, I leave it in the roasting pan to cool.  Then I take it out to slice thin and put it right back into the roasting pan so that all the juices can be mixed together which gives that added flavor.

Curried Sweet Potato / Carrot Soup


I love any kind of creamed vegetable soup with exotic spices and flavours, whether ordering at a restaurant or trying them at home. This easy to make soup is sure to warm you on a cold day.

Ingredients:
  • 2 sweet potatoes (yams) peeled, chopped  (4 - 5 cups)
  • 5 carrots, peeled, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • pepper
  • 1 onion, choped very fine
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated fine
  • 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon cury powder
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 4 cups chicken stock ( I use water and 3 teaspoons better than bouillon) 
  • 1 cup half and half cream
Method:
  1. Chop peeled yams and carrots into 1 inch slices. Bring to boil in salted water and cook for 5 - 7 minutes. Drain. Transfer to aluminum lined roasting pan. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil and pepper. Roast at 400° F for 30 minutes.
  2. In the meantime, cook onion with the rest of the olive oil in the same pot as you cooked the vegetables. Cook until soft and golden.
  3. Add vinegar, garlic, ginger and spices. Cook, stirring for a minute, then add 1 cup broth. Simmer until the roasted vegetables are done. 
  4. Blend roasted vegetables along with the cream in blender (or add all to pot and use immersion blender.)
  5. Add to pot along with enough broth to make the right consistency. 
  6. Serve with a dollup of yogurt or sour cream, if desired. Pumpkin seeds, toasted coconut and chives are options for garnish.  Serves 6



Mashed Potato Waffles



Not sure what to do with leftover mashed potatoes?  Here's something you may not have thought of.  Pull out your waffle iron and cook up some savory waffles for a brunch treat.

  • 2 cups cold leftover mashed potatoes
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped chives (or green onions)
  • 6-8 slices bacon, fried to a crisp and crumbled or cut into pieces
  • sour cream
  1. Preheat waffle iron on medium heat and spray with cooking oil.
  2. Combine potatoes, eggs, flour and salt in mixing bowl. 
  3. Stir in cheese and chives.
  4. Place a small scoop of mixture onto each section of the Belgian waffle iron and close lid.
  5. Cook until waffles are golden and crispy (about 5 minutes).
  6. Remove waffles and repeat with remaining potato mixture. 
  7. Serve waffles topped with sour cream, chopped green onion, and bacon pieces.
Yield: 8 small potato waffles


Peach Cherry Pinwheel Cobbler


Cherry pie filling and canned peaches with a hint of lemon and cinnamon is a delicious combo for the filling. This was our dessert for Valentine's Day dinner.
This is a little different method of making a cobbler. Rolling out the dough, spreading with peach jam and rolled up pinwheel style is a different twist to the topping.

Filling:
  • 1 can 540 ml/ 19 oz cherry pie filling
  • 1 cup canned sliced peaches, drained and slices cut in half
  • Juice of half a lemon 
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Topping:
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • Zest of half a lemon
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons peach jam
  • 2 teaspoons coarse sugar 
  1. In a greased  oven/microwave 8" square baking dish combine cherry pie filling, peaches, lemon juice and cinnamon.
  2. Microwave uncovered for 4 minutes until heated through.
  3. In a medium sized bowl whisk together dry topping ingredients.
  4. Cut in butter until you have coarse crumbs.
  5. Stir in buttermilk just until dry ingredients are moistened. Dump onto your counter and knead lightly until dough forms a ball.
  6. Roll dough into 8" x 9" rectangle. Spread peach jam over dough, roll up like a jelly roll starting with 8" side. Cut into 9 even slices.
  7. Place slices of dough over filling.
  8. Sprinkle with coarse sugar, I was out of coarse sugar and used granulated.
  9. Bake in a 400º oven for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown
  10. Serve warm with ice cream or whipped cream.
  11. Yield: 9 servings  

One-Skillet Steak for Two


This is a complete one-skillet meal for two that is satisfying. I found the idea in a magazine and I added my own twists to the recipe.

Ingredients:
  • 1 - (12 ounce) New York Strip steak 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper, divided
  • 2 teaspoons, plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine or any broth, divided
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons shallots, finely chopped
  • 4 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1/4 cup cream or half and half

Method:
  1. Season both sides of patted dry steak with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  2. Heat a 9 inch cast-iron or stainless steel skillet over medium high heat.
  3. Rub seasoned steak with 2 teaspoons oil and cook, turning every 2 minutes, to desired doneness, about 7-11 minutes, depending on thickness of your steak.
  4. Transfer steak to a cutting board to rest.
  5. Heat remaining tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter in the same pan adding 1/4 cup wine or broth slowly scrapping pan to de-glaze over medium high heat.
  6. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 3-4 minutes.
  7. Add garlic 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
  8. Continue to cook, stirring, for one minute.
  9. Transfer the mushrooms to a plate and cover to keep warm.
  10. Reduce heat to medium-low, add the shallots to the skillet and cook, stirring, until softened, 1-2 minutes.
  11. Add the other 1/4 cup wine or broth slowly.
  12. Add half the spinach and cook, stirring, until just wilted. 
  13. Add remaining spinach and cook, stirring, until wilted.
  14. Add the cream, remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes until the cream has thickened slighty.
  15. Return the mushrooms to the skillet and stir them with the creamed spinach mixture.
  16. Remove from heat.
  17. Slice the steak and serve on top of the mushrooms and creamed spinach.
  18. Serves: 2

Tips: When I went to the grocery store boneless Rib-Eye steak was on sale at $5.00 less per pound than the New York Strip so I used it instead and it worked nicely. If you buy a small bag of baby spinach you can use the whole bag, dividing it in two. It wilts down significantly. Have all your ingredients ready and proportioned before you start to make the process work smoothly.


Bread For The Journey


                                                                                                                                                           (iStock)
I Believe 

It's been a year that we have walked through sorrow and grief of hearing the tragic news.
Grief has such an interesting way of defining itself.  Each day it wears a new face.
It's not the way I expected the year to unfold.
~~~~~~
This past week I have enjoyed watching the Olympics Winter Games in PyeongChang. As I watch and observe the Olympics,  I think of Joe and what it was like for him on his last day of work as he trudged up the Gold Coast Ridge at Squaw Valley to his job as a ski patroller. He was doing avalanche control work to ready the snow-drenched mountain for the day's onslaught of skiers. 
Did he know he was going to meet his maker that day?
Joe was the type of young man who loved nothing more than deep conversations
from politics to quantum physics, to theology.
He was not afraid to ask the hard questions.  But more importantly, he wasn't afraid to seek answers.
It was so special to hear how one friend shared his experience while he spent the day touring in the mountains with Joe when he asked a very direct question,
"Do you believe that Jesus is the Son of God?"
Out of fear of the tough questions that may have followed, hesitantly, the words followed
 "Uh-huh, yeah sure."
Joe quickly and confidently responded, with "Well, I sure do."
That statement gave the confidence beyond a shadow of a doubt that there would be many more deep conversations, and endless powder turns for all eternity with Joe.
What does your life represent....?
Can people say of you, that without a shadow of a doubt
  they will share more life with you in eternity?
Ask the tough questions in life and continue to seek answers.
He has left a legacy in his life.
Little do we know when our time will come.
When I think of Joe, I realized he stood proudly on his podium and declared his belief in God and
God took the Gold medal and draped it around his neck.
Do you believe?

They replied, "Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, you and your household."
Acts 16:31 NIV

Cranberry and Ricotta Muffins ~ Flash Back Friday



I first posted these moist and tender ricotta muffins using dried cherries but have found that they are great with almost any chopped fruit or small berries. Today I'm using Cranberries.  The original recipe also has the option of adding a sugar butter topping.  You can find the original recipe here. 

Also, when I bake muffins, I prefer not to use cupcake liners. There used to be a muffin coffee shop in town and their muffins were just wonderful with a nice crisp exterior.  If you are having trouble getting your muffin pans to release without liners, it might be time to invest in some new ones.  My favourite pans are  USA tins.  I use them for Paska as well.  I don't even need to butter or spray them.  Marg told me about them and I've converted all my bread and muffin pans to that brand.
  • 1  cup ricotta cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk (or 1 cup whole milk with a teaspoon of vinegar)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice 
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 2 cups white flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries (partly chopped)
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Spray a 12 cup non-stick muffin pan and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the ricotta cheese and eggs with a whisk.
  4. Add the buttermilk and the flavourings, lemon peel and then butter.
  5. Add the dry ingredients all together and then stir just until combined.
  6. Add the cranberries, just stirring until evenly dispersed.
  7. Fill the muffin cups almost to the top.
  8. Bake for about 20 - 25  minutes or until a toothpick comes clean.

Cauliflower Chowder



I came across a large bag of finely chopped cauliflower in my freezer a few weeks ago.
We'd bought too much for the antipasto we made before Christmas and
I'd bagged up the remainder thinking I could use it in soup.
So that's what I did and it was delicious!
It's  hearty, healthy and satisfying!

  • 1 1/2 cups finely diced cooked farmer sausage *
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 large stalk celery, diced
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup half and half cream or whipping cream** 
  • 1 head cauliflower, finely chopped ( about 4 cups)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and seasoned pepper (like Montreal steak spice)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  1. Saute onion garlic, carrots and celery in butter until vegetables begin to soften.
  2. Place vegetables in large soup pot and add cauliflower, bay leaf and chicken broth.
  3. Bring to a boil and simmer over medium low heat until cauliflower is softened. 
  4. Taste chowder and add seasoned pepper and salt if needed.
  5. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.
Notes:
*You can replace the farmer sausage with 1 cup crumbled, pre-fried bacon
**You can replace the cream with 2% milk if you like but you may need to thicken the soup with milk and flour blended together. Add thickening and stir as you bring it back to a boil. Simmer a few minutes, stirring well.

Valentines Rice Krispie Treats


I had not planned on posting this here but when the date was free, I decided to take it, even if just for a super simple treat today. Maybe you have some littles in your family to do this with. As you can see, these three-year-olds can do it, so anyone can.

Ingredients:
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 5 cups miniature or 40 regular (250 g pkg) marshmallows
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
  • 6 cups Rice Krispies cereal
  • 1- 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips 
  • sprinkles of choice
Method:
  1. In a large pot, over low heat, melt butter, then add the marshmallows, stirring until melted.
  2. Stir in vanilla and cereal. 
  3. Press onto wax or parchment paper lined pan to about 3/4 inch thickness.
  4. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters and insert lolly pop sticks. (optional) You can keep reshaping the cereal before it hardens.
  5. Melt chocolate chips.
  6. Put the melted chocolate in a piping bag (or small zip-lock with a tiny hole cut in it) to outline or cover part of the Rice Krispie cookies. (I quickly did this and then let the girls sprinkle to their hearts content.)
  7. Refrigerate until set. Slip into tiny cellophane bags and tie.




If you do them without "help" you can perfect them a bit more ... but you'll miss out on the excitement of watching those sprinkles get dumped. I used a cookie sheet to work on for good reason.

Happy Valentines Day!

Ground Chicken Chili


This is an easy last minute recipe for a tasty chili if you have all the ingredients on hand.

Ingredients:
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil of your choice
  • 1-28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cans (15.5 ounces each) of white chili beans
  • 1 can (7 ounces) of diced green chiles
  • 2 cups frozen roasted corn kernels
  • 1 jalapeno chopped (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder

Toppings:
  • Avocado
  • Cilantro
  • Fresh tomatoes
  • Sour Cream
  • Grated cheese

Method:
  1. Heat dutch oven with the 2 tablespoons oil then add the onion and cook till transparent.
  2. Add the ground chicken and cook through.
  3. Add the cans of tomatoes, beans, chiles, plus the corn, jalapeno, cumin and chili powder.
  4. Bring all ingredients to a simmer and continue simmering for 15-30 minutes. 
  5. Serve with toppings of cilantro, avocado, fresh tomatoes, green onions, sour cream and grated cheese. 
  6. Serves: 4-6

You can omit any toppings you don't enjoy. If you don't have a source for roasted corn you can use any frozen corn.

Cinnamon Bun Muffins


This is not really a new recipe, but I  thought I'd share this method - just a different twist to the regular cinnamon bun. The grandkids declared them awesome!

Ingredients:

  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup ice cold water
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/4 - 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1  1/2 tablespoons instant yeast
filling
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
icing
  • 1 tablespoon soft margarine
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • milk to make a smooth, runny consistency (start with 2 tablespoons)
Method:
  1. Scald milk with the butter (to melt) and then add cold water to cool it down.
  2. In mixing bowl, beat eggs and sugar. Add salt.
  3. Stir in warm milk and butter. If it's still quite hot, start with just a tad at a time while stirring.
  4. Add flour, one cup at a time, mixing one cup with the yeast. 
  5. Knead until soft and you can shape it into a ball. 
  6. Cover the bowl and let rise until double in size, about 45 minutes.
  7. Roll dough out into a rectangular shape ( about 18 x 10 inches) on lightly floured surface.
  8. Spread with melted butter and sugar/cinnamon mixture.
  9. Roll up, starting on longer side. Cut into 12 slices. (in half, in half again and then each quarter into three) 
  10. Prepare muffin tins with parchment paper cups or spray. 
  11. Take each bun and push up the center from underneath, while you pinch the bottom to shape it like a tulip. ( you can also unroll and re-roll to make a stepped, tower look.) 
  12. Place into muffin tins, cover loosely with plastic bag and let rise 30 - 45 minutes.
  13. Bake at 350° F for 18 - 20 minutes.
  14. Drizzle with icing when almost cooled off. Yields 12 large muffin/buns. 

(unbaked)

Bread for the Journey


Honoring others in love.

 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another;

Romans 12:10

The kind of love that the Bible is talking about here is not a feeling of love but a choice of love. 

Recently, this little one slid her bowl of Cheerios across to me.  It was an unexpected gesture that filled my heart. This week, whether I show a random act of kindness to someone else or offer tokens of love to my sweetheart and family, putting others above myself is a way of honouring God.   

It is even more special when we show love to others in ways that they most feel loved.

 Dr Gary Chapman in his book The Five Love Languages explains how each of us feels loved in different ways.  

Words of affirmation
Quality Time
Receiving Gifts
Acts of Service
Affection

May you find joy this week in finding simple ways to love those around you! 

Do you have a sweet idea? We would love to hear it.  Let's pass on our ideas to one another.  

Strawberry Balsamic Chicken Bacon Pizza-Flash Back Friday

For flash back Friday I've chosen to re share one of the pizzas I bake for company that I'm pretty sure they have not tried.
I originally found this recipe one day looking at Pinterest. Strawberries on pizza? I had to try it, but I changed up a few things to make it my own.

-I added 1 tablespoon of pineapple juice to the sauce
-in place of cilantro, I used baby arugula which gives a slightly peppery taste
-I added feta cheese for that little zip...and I think it gives a pretty finish
**last time I made this I added a few pineapple chunks to the toppings**

During strawberry season I like to reduce good quality flavoured balsamic vinegar and once it's thickened and slightly cooled, drizzle it over skewers of fresh strawberries and pineapple. So it was no surprise to me when I saw this pizza recipe with it's unique combination of ingredients that I knew it would be a hit. I've also added my favourite pizza dough recipe.

Pizza Dough: enough for one 12-14" pizza
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons quick rise yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspooon sugar
  • 1 cup very warm water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  1. Place flour in a large bowl. 
  2. Stir in yeast, sugar and salt.
  3. Add water and oil. Stir until dough starts to come together.
  4. Stir dough until it's too hard to stir and then knead until a soft none sticky dough pulls together. Form into ball and rub with a small amount of olive oil.
  5. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest on counter until double in bulk, approximately 35 minutes, OR cover with plastic wrap and let sit in refrigerator for 24 hours. This method of a longer rest time allows the gluten to relax and the result is a dough that is very easy to work with and produces a crisp airy crust. If you put dough in refrigerator, take out and allow to rest on counter for about half hour before forming crust.
Pizza toppings:
  • 1 cup chicken breast cut into bite sized pieces. ( you can roast one chicken breast for this or use a rotisserie chicken breast from the deli)
  • 4 slices apple wood smoked bacon, cut into 1" pieces and fried to tender crisp
  • 1/4 cup thin slices of sweet onion, I like to use walla walla onions this time of year
  • 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese, or a blended cheese
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese
  • fresh strawberries
  • baby arugula
  1. Cut up roasted chicken breast into bite size pieces. 
  2. Cut up bacon and fry to tender crisp.
  3. Slice onion into very thin rings.
  4. Prepare pizza sauce, recipe below.
Pizza sauce - this is not your ordinary pizza sauce!
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup strawberry jam
  • 1 tsp hot sauce, or to taste. I add a bit more as we like a bit of heat
  • 1 tablespoon pineapple juice
  1. In a small sauce pan heat the balsamic vinegar over medium heat until it begins to boil. Turn down and let cook until it reduces to about 1/2 the amount.
  2. Stir in the remaining ingredients until well combined.
  3. Remove from heat and allow this mixture to cool while you prepare the remaining ingredients. As it cools it will thicken. (at the point dip a whole strawberry into the mixture and enjoy.
Assembling and baking pizza:
  1. Place pizza stone in a cold oven and turn oven to 450º.
  2. While oven and stone are heating up shape pizza dough to a round a few inches smaller than stone. Place dough onto a piece of parchment paper sprinkled with a bit of cornmeal. This will help the pizza to release and slide onto the hot stone easily.
  3. Once you have your shell formed on the parchment, spread 1/2 the sauce onto the shell. 
  4. Pour the remaining sauce over the chicken pieces and stir to coat. Set aside.
  5. Sprinkle half the mozzarella cheese over the pizza crust and sauce.
  6. Next add the chicken, then the bacon, onion rings and top with remaining cheese.
  7. Carefully slide the prepared pizza onto the hot stone and bake for 20-25 minutes. 
  8. Remove from oven, slide pizza onto a cutting board. 
  9. Top with fresh cup up strawberries, baby arugula and feta cheese. Serve immediately.





Hash Brown Quiche


The secret to this quiche is a crispy hash brown crust.
Perfect for a weekend brunch. Credit goes to my Daughter in law for this recipe.

  • 3 large boiled potatoes, shredded or 24 oz. pkg. frozen hash browns, thawed
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1 cup diced ham 
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup Half and Half Cream (or evaporated milk )
  • 3 eggs, beaten well
  • salt and pepper 
  1. Butter a 9 inch pie pan or square pan. 
  2. Press Shredded potatoes covering entire bottom and sides of pan. 
  3. Brush with melted butter – especially sides and edges.
  4. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes or until potatoes begin to brown.
  5. Remove from oven. Turn oven down to 350 degrees.
  6. Mix up all remaining ingredients except 1 cup of cheddar cheese.  
  7. Pour over hash brown crust. 
  8. Cover with remaining cheddar cheese. 
  9. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 – 40 minutes – till set.
  10. Let stand 5 minutes before cutting and serving.


 To make in a 9x13 inch pan, increase ingredients 2 ½ times.


Cinnamon Swirl Pancakes



With Valentine's Day right around the corner, here's an idea for a special brunch.  Combine cinnamon pancakes with a maple cream cheese drizzle and you have a winner. Add fresh fruit and bacon and call it brunch.

Buttermilk Pancakes:
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

Cinnamon Filling:
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  1. Stir melted butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon together until combined.  
  2. Put filling into a small Ziploc bag and set aside.
 Pancakes:
  1. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in mixing bowl.
  2. Whisk in buttermilk, oil and egg until somewhat smooth (do not overmix). 
  3. Heat large skillet or griddle over medium heat.Spray with cooking oil.
  4. Drop mounds of batter (about 1/2 cup each) onto the griddle.
  5. Snip a corner off the baggie of cinnamon filling and squeeze a spiral of filling onto each pancake.
  6. Once top begins to bubble, flip carefully and cook until golden on the other side.
  7. Transfer to baking sheet and keep warm in oven, until ready to serve.
  8. Serve with warmed cream cheese drizzle (instructions to follow).
  Maple Cream Cheese Drizzle:
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  1. Place cream cheese and  syrup in a medium glass bowl and heat in microwave for 30 seconds. 
  2. Beat with mixer or wire whip, adding 2 tablespoons milk for consistency.
  3. If lumpy, heat for another 20-30 seconds.
  4. Beat until smooth.
 *If you don't care for the cream cheese topping, serve with your favorite pancake syrup.

Jambalaya



Jambalaya is a New Orleans classic. Rice infused with lots of wonderful spicy flavour. Crusty bread is all you need as a side with this dish. If you need more spice serve with hot sauce on the side.
  • 2 links spicy sausages, cut into thin rounds 
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into small bite size pieces
  • 1 dozen raw peeled and deveined prawns
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped red or green pepper
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1 28 ounce can fire roasted tomatoes, drain juice into a two cup measuring cup
  • 2 cups white long grain rice
  • 1 tablespoon creole spice, or to your spice tolerance
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped green onions, for topping before serving
  1. Place vegetable oil in a heavy dutch oven. 
  2. Heat, and then add in the cut up sausages and chicken. Saute until well browned. Remove to a bowl.
  3. Add vegetable to the dutch oven and saute, scraping up all the brown bits from the meat which will add nice flavour to your dish. If the vegetables stick or become dry add a small amount of the vegetable or chicken stock. 
  4. Once vegetables are getting soft add the meat back into the pot. 
  5. Add the drained tomatoes and the spice. Stir to combine.
  6. Add stock to the tomato juice and add water to make 2 cups. Add this to the dutch oven. Stir well.
  7. Stir rice into mixture.
  8. Place lid on dutch oven and bake in 350ºF oven and bake for 20 minutes. 
  9. Place thawed shrimp into pot and gentle mix in with a fork and quickly place lid back on. 
  10. Bake another 15 minutes. Sprinkle with green onions and enjoy.




Vanilla Slice


There used to be a grocery store in Clearbrook called Funk's that had the most wonderful bakery.  I would go there to pick up hot dog buns for hotdog sales at the boys' school.  While I would be there, I would buy myself a piece of Vanilla Slice and savour every bite. The crisp layers and the creamy fillings were my absolute favourite bakery treat. Now I make  a version of it myself and it is still my favourite texture and flavour combination. 
  • 1 397 gram / 14-ounce package frozen puff pastry, thawed according to package instructions  (I use Tenderflake) 
Pastry Cream
  • 1 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Whipped Cream
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 package Dr Oetker whipping cream stabilizer or 1 tablespoon vanilla instant pudding
Icing
  • 1 cup icing/powdered sugar
  • heavy cream 
Garnish
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Roll out the puff pastry to about 1/4 inch thick. Cut the pastry into 3 even rectangles, measuring approximately 4 X 8 cutting around all the edges to make clean edges.  
  3. Place pastry on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  Prick the pastry with a fork.  Place another sheet of parchment paper on top of the pastry and add a cookie cooling rack on top to add weight so that it bakes evenly and stays level.
  4. Bake 30 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and crisp all the way through. Cool for a minute and then split each piece in half (should be easy to split with all the layers) to make 6 pieces of pastry. Return to the oven with the insides of the pastry face up for 2 - 3 minutes to crisp.
  5. In a medium pot, (or microwave safe bowl)  whisk egg yolks with the cornstarch sugar and milk until smooth.  
  6. Bring to a simmer stirring the whole time.  (or cook in the microwave stirring every minute) As soon as it comes to a light boil, pour through a strainer to remove any lumps and add butter and vanilla.  Cover the surface with plastic wrap and chill until room temperature.
  7. Place two pastries on a tray and begin assembling.
  8. Divide the cold pastry cream between two pastry pieces.
  9. Cover with another piece of pastry on each of the two pieces.
  10. Whip cream with sugar, vanilla and stabilizer.  Gently spread whipped cream on top of the pastry.
  11. Top with the final pieces of pastry.
  12. Stir together icing/powdered sugar with heavy cream to make a smooth and spreadable icing.
  13. Spread the icing on the top layer of pastry.
  14. Heat the 1/2 cup whipping cream, stir in chocolate chips and stir until smooth. Pour into a piping bag.  Cut a small hole into the tip of the bag.
  15. Drizzle chocolate onto the icing and drag a toothpick through to make a design.  
  16. Chill vanilla slice for a few hours before slicing.
Tips
  • It doesn't matter what shape you roll out your pastry, as long as you begin with three even-sized pieces that can be split in half horizontally.   I make mine the shape of the plate I want to serve it on. 
  • Slice with an electric knife if possible or very gently with a very sharp serrated knife. 
  • Each pastry cuts into about 8 pieces.  
  • Do not freeze.  Custard does not freeze well.
  • The dessert will be best within 12 hours. 

Bread for the Journey - Saviour Like a Shepherd lead us.




Saviour, like a shepherd lead us,
Much we need Thy tender care;
In Thy pleasant pastures feed us,
For our use Thy folds prepare:
Blessed Jesus, Blessed Jesus,
Thou hast bought us, Thine we are;
Blessed Jesus, Blessed Jesus,
Thou hast bought us, Thine we are.

We are Thine; do Thou befriend us,
Be the Guardian of our way;
Keep Thy flock, from sin defend us,
Seek us when we go astray:
Blessed Jesus, Blessed Jesus,
Hear, O hear us when we pray;
Blessed Jesus, Blessed Jesus,
Hear, O hear us when we pray.

Thou hast promised to receive us,
Poor and sinful tho' we be;
Thou hast mercy to relieve us,
Grace to cleanse, and pow'r to free:
Blessed Jesus, Blessed Jesus,
Early let us turn to Thee;
Blessed Jesus, Blessed Jesus,
Early let us turn to Thee.

Early let us seek Thy favor;
Early let us do Thy will;
Blessed Lord and only Saviour,
With Thy love our bosoms fill:
Blessed Jesus, Blessed Jesus,
Thou hast loved us, love us still;
Blessed Jesus, Blessed Jesus,
Thou hast loved us, love us still.



Chocolate-O-Chocolate Cookies ... gluten free



For Flashback Friday I thought I would remind you of these delicious cookies I posted a few years ago .. you can find the original recipe here 

I have simplified the recipe somewhat in the update below ...

 Chocolate-O-Chocolate Cookies
  • 1/2 cup butter 
  • 1/2 cup shortening 
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar 
  • 1/2 cup white sugar 
  • 2 eggs 
  • 1 teaspoon  vanilla 
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder 
  • 1 (4 oz) package of instant chocolate pudding 
  •  one cup Julie's Flour mix or your favorite GF all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum 
  • 1/2 teaspoon soda 
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder 
  • 3 1/2 cups gluten-free oat flakes 
  • 2 cups chocolate chips 
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (optional) 
  1. Cream together butter, shortening and sugars 
  2. Add eggs and vanilla and beat well. 
  3. Add mixed together dry ingredients , stirring well 
  4. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. 
  5. Drop by teaspoons onto greased cookie sheet. 
  6. Bake in 350 degree oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until done. (Less time in oven  leaves cookies softer, baking longer makes them  crispier) .  Let cool slightly before removing from pan.   
** note -- this is quite a large recipe but it can easily be cut in half. 

Amy's Date and Nut Bars


This is my daughter's recipe and it uses whole foods and natural sugars coming from the dried fruit. I will share with you today two versions to show how easy it is to switch things up and add whatever you wish. The nuts don't have to be toasted but they do add a depth of flavor if they are.
Each variation makes one loaf pan cut into bars.

Coconut Date Bars: (Top Bar)

  • 1 cup of toasted nuts (1/2 each of almonds and cashews)
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 cups of medjool dates
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
Ginger Date Bars: (Bottom Bar)
  • 1 cup toasted nuts (1/2 cup each of almonds and pecans were used)
  • 1 cup of mejooled dates
  • 1 - 2" piece of ginger peeled and shredded or finely diced if you like pieces of ginger in it. 
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  1. Add the nuts into a food processor and pulse until you have small pieces.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until the mixture is well combined and sticky. 
  3. Press into a parchment lined loaf pan.
  4. Chill in the refridgerator until firm. 
  5. Remove from pan and cup into bars. 
  6. They keep well in the refridgerator for about a month or freeze.