RSS Feed

Summer Sizzle Tips and Tricks – Video

Posted on

Watch the video below to see how to keep your cool in the summer heat while making simple dishes and refreshing treats:

Mentioned in the video:

Slicing and shredding: 4-in-1 Mandoline

Steaming: Multipurpose Steamer

Grilling Fruits: Coconut Lime Sweet Dip Mix

Pudding Pops: Chocolate Instant Pudding Mix

Pudding Pie: Vanilla Bean Instant Pudding Mix

Ice Cubes: Iceberg Mold

Iced Tea: Brentwood Teapot

Iced Coffee: French Press

Veggie Noodles: Veggie Twist and Spiral Slicer

Salad Dressing: Miso & Ginger Nourish Dressing Mix

Salad Topper: Garlicky Dill

Brie Stuffed Veggie Burger: Recipe

Pickled Onions: Quickles Pickling Mix

Sauce: Big Burger Sauce Mix

I love to chill out with frozen desserts and fresh salads in the summer time. What’s your favourite treat to handle the heat of summer days and nights?

Advertisements

Kitchen Hack: Avocado Freshness

Posted on

IMG_3297

I hated avocados for decades, I thought they were slimy and gross. Until, one day I had a fresh guacamole that was more like salsa with firm chunks of barely ripe avocado than the green goo they sell at the grocery store. Since then, my love affair with avocados has only deepened, to the point that I will indulge daily.

IMG_3300

The trick with avocados is using them in that shoe window of gloriousness ripeness that passes all to soon. I have a trick that expands this opportune time from mere minutes (OK, maybe hours) up to a WHOLE WEEK.

IMG_3307

I buy my avocados in bulk, for the best price (sometimes at Costco), when they are rock hard and let them ripen on the counter. To speed up this process, place them near bananas (which release ethylene gas) or to super charge it, place the avocados in a brown bag WITH bananas.

Once they are ripe, keep them in the refrigerator until YOU are ready to use them!

Avocados are a wonderful source of fibre, monounsaturated fat (the good kind) and tons of vitamins and nutrients. I love using avocado in place of may for tuna salad. What’s you favourite way to enjoy a perfectly ripe avocado?

Brie Stuffed Veggie Burger

Posted on

Brie Stuffed Veggie Burger

When I sat down to enjoy this flavour packed veggie burger stuffed with brie cheese, I did not know just how many people would share in the excitement of my creation! I entered this photo of my homemade burger, dressed with avocado sauce and pickled onions, in a burger contest and promptly forgot all about it, until my Brie Stuffed Veggie Burger won the contest.

Epic Burger Contest

I was honoured to have my beautiful burger recognized and, of course, was thrilled to win the prize (who doesn’t love winning?). I did re-prize it as I love to share good fortune (even more than winning) and it was too good to keep to myself!

Brie Stuffed Veggie Burgers

Ingredients

MAKES: 4 SERVINGS

  • 1 pkg Veggie Burger Mix (Pkg of 2)
  • 1/2 C (125 ml) hot water
  • 3 Tbsp (45 ml) lemon juice
  • 1 C (250 ml) cooked quinoa
  • 1 C (250 ml) grated zucchini (or carrot)
  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) oil
  • Brie Cheese (or other soft cheese)

Method

  1. In a bowl, combine first 5 ingredients. Let stand 5 minutes
  2. Use Burger Press to form 4 patties with brie cheese inside
  3. Preheat large Fry Pan or grill pan over medium heat. Add oil. Cook until golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes per side.

Recipe Tip: Make burgers; refrigerate or freeze. Reheat on barbecue for smoky flavour.

Avocado Burger Sauce

Ingredients

Method

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, using Piano Wire Whisk, whisk together all ingredients.
  2. Store in a sealed container in fridge for up to 1 week.

Quickled Red Onions

Ingredients

MAKES: 1 C (250 ML)

Method

  1. In a saucepan, combine water, vinegar, sugar, pickling mix, and salt.
  2. Boil, then simmer for 5 minutes.
  3. Pour over sliced onion. Chill before serving.

Hack: Add pickled onion juice to Caesars and Bloody Marys or substitute it for the vinegar in your salad dressings.

Assemble with all your favourite burger fixings and enjoy! I love onions on my burgers: raw, pickled, caramelized or any combination. What is the one topping that makes your burger the best it can be?

Meal Prep Tips and Tricks – Video

Posted on

Watch the video below to see my 5 favourite foods and tools for keeping meal prep easy breezy:

Top Five Foods for Meal Prep:

  1. Mixed Greens – in the fridge for salads and in the freezer for smoothies
  2. Organic Dried Beans – cook in slow cooker, pressure cooker or on the stove
  3. Vanilla Optimum Vegan Protein Blend – in oatmeal, smoothies, yogurt and baking
  4. Salad Dressings: Miso Ginger and Balsamic
  5. Toppings:  Garlic Onion and Tutti Fruity

Top Five Tools for Meal Prep:

  1. Mason Jars with plastic lids: for storing and transporting
  2. Silicone Muffin Tray: for baking and freezing
  3. Portion Scoops: for prepping nourish bowls and individual meals
  4. Immersion Blender: for pureeing soups, dressings, pudding and smoothies
  5. Sheet Pan and Liner: for sheet pan dinners, cookings and jelly rolls!

What are your meal prep tips?

Eat More Bar Extravaganza

Posted on

img_5083

Homemade treats are always the best, especially when they are a better copy of a commercial sweet! While I’ve never been a fan of Eatmore candy bars (too sugary), this version has become an indispensable part of our family’s annual Christmas cookie tray tradition.

img_0395

Year after year, but

img_2001

I love making them in Epicure’s Perfect Petites Silicone Cookware as it gives it the perfect shape and makes it super easy to pop them out! I used to cut them into bars, but they never looked so scrumptious.

img_0393

Eatmore Bars

Ingredients

1/2 Cup smooth peanut butter

1 Cup golden corn syrup

1 3/4 Cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 1/4 Cups rolled oats

2 Cups dry roasted peanuts

 

Method

  1. Pulse oats in a food processor until small flakes (but not oat flour)
  2. Chop peanuts, but agin, not to a dust
  3. If not using silicone cookware, grease a 10″ x 6″ pan
  4. In a saucepan, bring peanut butter and corn syrup to a low boil and stir well.
  5. Remove from heat, add chocolate chips and mix until melted
  6. Add oats and peanuts and mix them in
  7. Pour into pan or scoop into silicone cookware
  8. Chill to harden (thaw for five minutes, then slice into bars, if using a pan)

Do you have a favourite store bought indulgence that you’ve made better at home?

Gingerbread Spice Cookies

Posted on

Sleigh Cookie

Forgiveness is important, especially in baking. I love this cookie dough because it lets me get away  with a LOT: flavouring, tearing, re-rolling, flour substitutions, over baking. I’ve never made a bad batch and that’s why I’ll keep using this recipe until there are Food Replicators in every kitchen (then I’ll program it in).

img_4922

The most recent variation was for a Kids Cooking Class featuring Festive Treats, so I amped up the cheer with Epicure Gingerbread Spices. You can keep it plain vanilla (as long as you use the good stuff) or add your favourite spice blend.

img_4919

Gingerbread Brown Sugar Thins

Ingredients

2 1/4 Cups (270g) all purpose flour

1/4 tsp salt

1 Cup (226 g) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup (213 g) packed dark brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 TBS Epicure Gingerbread Spices

Method

Preheat oven to 300F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment or reusable non-stick baking mats.

Mix flour, salt and spices together

Beat butter, brown sugar and vanilla until light in colour and texture (about 3 minutes in a stand mixer with paddle attachment on medium speed). Then add flour mixture gradually to make a smooth dough. Press dough into a smooth flat disc.

Break the dough into 4 roughly equal pieces and roll each one out on a lightly floured surface until 1/8 inch thick.

Dip cookie cutters into flour and cut out shapes. Arrange cookies at least 1 inch apart on the sheets. Scraps can be gathered, rested for 5 minutes and re-rolled.

Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes (lift one up and check that it’s firm). Cool on sheets for 3 minutes then move to cooling racks until room temperature.

Baked cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days unrefrigerated.

The dough can also be kept in the fridge, tightly wrapped in plastic wrap for up to 5 days. Let it warm up before rolling out.

Decorate if you desire or keep them plain! Do you have a favourite cookie cutter shape? I love heart-shaped cookies any time of year.

 

Kids Cooking Class: Festive Treats

Posted on

eabb56f7-4b6d-4fc7-8767-2ef78e81d1deOne of my favourite parts of the holidays is baking! I like to use tried-and-true family recipes AND also get creative by trying new concepts and ideas.

The only way to make baking more fun, is to have enthusiastic helpers, so I put together a Festive Treats Cooking Class for 5 to 10 year olds and it was a cosy good time! We made:

  • Eggnog Pudding
  • Candy Cane Brownies (Gluten Free)
  • Gingerbread Spice Cookies
  • Cranapple Fruit Dip

While the young chefs made the sweet snacks, they learned about following recipes, adapting recipes, kitchen safety and the importance of trying new flavours BEFORE deciding if you like it.

I’ll be sharing the recipes (links will be added above), but would love to bring a class to YOUR kitchen and cook with your kids and their friends so they can measure, mix and make it themselves! Enter your name, email and time options below to find out more:

What is your favourite festive treat?

 

%d bloggers like this: