Friday, July 16, 2010


I have decided to take another cake decorating class - fondant & gumpaste. I have realized that I don't think I'll decorate a lot of cakes, but I do enjoy making cupcakes. There is something about making a tiny single-serving cake that you can enjoy & it's tiny enough you don't have to

My focus for baking for the next little while will be cupcakes & trying to create a kick-ass red velvet cupcake!!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Small Rewards

There is something rewarding & maternally satisfying watching something grow that I started from a teeny tiny seed. It's even better when it's vegetables & you'll able to eat the organically grown treats soon too!

Now, I've just got to find recipes for all the tasty things - especially tomatoes. Maybe it's the Newfie in me, but I hate to see anything go to waste. Although my partner/test subject might not agree but I enjoy finding new ways to ensure I use every ounce of the food I grow. Hopefully I'll find some good ones for tomatoes cause thanks to my fetile homemade compost soil I have 60-70 tomato plants (I had almost 90 but gave some away). Anyone want a tomato plant??

Garden Season has Begun

With my first squash (zucchini) harvest the garden season has officially started!!

My tomato plants are flowering, my peas are ready to be picked, my turnip greens are already blanched & in my freezer (if your from NL you know what it it)... and soon hopefully I'll have cucumbers too!

It really does amaze me. I started with tomatoes, peppers and lettuce in plastic buckets on the patio of my single-life apartment. Now 10 years later I have an in-ground garden (that my hunny made me) and plants that come back every year, some with more gusto than I'd like. Just goes to show you what you can do when your determined & have some awesome compost (all the stinky fruit & ved does make a difference). This year everything went so well my tomatoes from last year came back to life & mutlipled... A LOT. I have around 90 growing - not exaggerating I stoped counting at 85!

whine, whine ... and WINE!

I really do love my kids... I just keep telling myself that. I am now a stay-at-home mom of 2 (for a few months, until I hopefully find work) and I wonder if I'll make it! Everyone says little boys are active... I'd like them to spend a day with my monkey! & my sweet baby girl went from 2 teeth to 6 in less than a week. Through all of this, and besides the fact my 3-year old is able to count backwards from 3 I still can't help blessing the people that spend all day taking care of other people's kids. Even though people say kids are easier when they have others to play with, I wouldn't be able to do it.

Thankfully my mom will be here to help for a few weeks. Perhaps then I can cut down the wine (for relaxation... kids in bed at 8:30, wine opened at 8:31) & chocolate (for energy... so tired & it's better than coffee!) & get back at getting into shape.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Strawberry Suprise!

I've had family visiting a lot & have spent time with my sister-in-law. A great part of this (other than seeing my super cute neice) is I get to find all kinds of new recipes!

Here is one that will impress anyone. Homemade Shortcake for Strawberry shortcake!

1 cup of sugar
2 eggs
Mix on low for about 5 minutes

1/2 cup of warm milk
1 tablespoon of butter
Mix on low for about 3 minutes

1 cup of flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
A pinch of salt

Pour into greased square baking dish & abake for approx 25 minutes at 350.

Cut into individual pieces & smother with strawberries & whipped cream! Let your guests add their own toppings. kids will love it! You can also try making a coulee or soak yoru berries in brandy or something fun for adults.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

A little Meat!

Along with an amazing dessert I made for my in-laws, I also made burgers. Both beef & tasty veal ones that let me use herbs from my garden. After a few bbqs of burgers & dogs you might want to try something new - give veal a try.

Bistro Veal Burgers:

1 slice bread, torn into small pieces (I toasted mine)
2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (I doubled this)
1 egg
2 basil leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary (I used more)
1 teaspoon pepper
1 pound ground veal
4 (1 ounce) slices Cheddar or pepper jack cheese (optional) (I used Havarti)
4 hamburger buns
Place torn bread into a bowl and sprinkle with milk and Worcestershire sauce. Mix in egg until combined. Season with basil, rosemary, and pepper. Mix in veal until evenly mixed. Shape veal mixture into four patties.
Preheat a grill for medium heat.
Lightly oil the hot grill. Grill veal burgers to desired degree of doneness, about 5 minutes per side for medium. Place a slice of cheese on each burger, and allow to melt for about 1 minute before serving on buns.

Original Recipe Yield 4 burgers


Every married person has in-laws. You don't get to choose your in-laws, just like your own family. If you're far away from your family your in-laws are even more important.

I had a day of in-laws! After a precarious start (my mother-in-law got a flat on the highway) we went strawberry picking. Let me tell you 37 or 38 degrees with 2 kids in the sun - you are happy to have an in-law around to help! That & the fact you are creating memories ...even if they are of peeing in the open & having a strawberry stained face!!

The day ended with my father-in-law & his wife (& brother & sister-in-law) joining us for supper. Earlier I mentioned to them I was going strawberry picking in the hopes of making strawberry rhubarb jam, the wife mentioned a pie she had made... Rhubarb Custard Pie & suggested I try it. Being adventurous (& loving the mix) I decided to try Strawberry Rhubarb Custard Pie. IT WAS AWESOME!!!! Everyone was pleased & I was happy to make a meal that was equal to my martha-like sister-in-law... one day I will have it as together as her.

Below is the original recipe. (SEE MY NOTES AT THE END).


Line a 9 inch pie dish with pastry.
2 beaten eggs
2 tbsp. milk
1 1/2 c. sugar
3 tbsp. flour
Pinch of salt, cinnamon and nutmeg
1 1/2 c. rhubarb, cut in 1/2 inch slices
Pour mixture into pie shell.
Top with crumb topping.
Bake at 400 for 40 minutes or until custard is set up.

Combine by cutting with pastry cutter:
1/2 c. butter (cold)
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 c. flour

NOTE: Suggestions: put in less sugar - again I used a packet of vanilla sugar. I added strawberries & rhubarb to the pie crust (about 4 cups total) to make sure I had enough to fill, then added them to the custard to mix it all before dumping back into the pie. Lastly I put a pie crust cover on top instead of the crumble topping - next time I'll try the crumb.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Just Peachy

In my effort to get my blog up and running, I decided to kick it off with a tasty summer treat.

Many American movies show southern belles and they all make their famous Peach Cobbler and hey we can all use some southern hospitality, right?

I was expecting it to be hard, but it was SO EASY! When never sure on how it turned out my hint came when I walked into the kitchen & saw my husband had eaten a 1/4 of the dish! It was even better when served warm with ice cream.
Here is the recipe I found. The only note I have to say is that the peaches in the US must be bigger. I used around 10 and next time I'll use more! Also, a special treat I use is vanilla sugar, found at your local grocery store in the baking section. It really adds a lot of flavor to any fruit dish your making.


Original Recipe Yield 4 servings

8 fresh peaches - peeled, pitted and sliced into thin wedges
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons cornstarch

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1/4 cup boiling water

3 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
2. In a large bowl, combine peaches, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice, and cornstarch. Toss to coat evenly, and pour into a 2 quart baking dish. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine flour, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, baking powder, and salt. Blend in butter with your fingertips, or a pastry blender, until mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in water until just combined.
4. Remove peaches from oven, and drop spoonfuls of topping over them. Sprinkle entire cobbler with the sugar and cinnamon mixture. Bake until topping is golden, about 30 minutes.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 512 Total Fat: 17.6g Cholesterol: 46mg

Where does time go?

Ok... so I have to admit that my life has overtaken me. I usually am good at organizing my time to ensure I fit everything in... but lately I think I've been fitting so much in that I don't have time for everything and this blog has fallen to the wayside.

I so enjoy writing & even looking back & reading what I have written and I feel horrible that I have neglected it... even if no one reads it, that's not the point. The point is to write it & hopefully someone will read it, or enjoy it... if not at least I will.

I'm going to follow-this up right away with a recipe for a great summer treat!!