Tuesday, 31 December 2013

New Year's Eve Appy Night

It's New Year's Eve and at my house that means a night filled with sparkling drinks and appys. I like to think that I eat less when I'm eating finger food, but I know that I'm kidding myself. I know I fill my little plate up with way more food than I would with just a main course. But it's the holidays right?

Today I'm sharing my New Year's Eve menu with you instead of some new dishes. I love making new  recipes, but I love some of my tried and true favourites a little but more.

First up, I'm going to make my Curried Peanut Butter Sauce. It's great with meatballs like I first showed you, but this time I'm going to serve it with some Grilled Bay Scallop Skewers and also with some Summer Rolls. Tonight's Summer Rolls will be a little different than last time, so look for them in a new post coming up next month!

I'm also going to make one of my favourite dishes, Stuffed Mushrooms! I'll be skipping the bacon in my original recipe, so I might need a little extra cheese to make them sing. But the crescent roll wrapper will stay. I'll never say no to them!

Finally I have one new recipe to try, something I'm going to call Fingerling Potato Jackets. My sweetie wants some guacamole and I know that it would be perfect to serve with baby potato skins stuffed with cheese and salsa. Come back for this recipe too!

Have fun tonight and stay safe! And don't forget to enter my giveaway for some great Team Canada Olympic gear!

Saturday, 28 December 2013

An Olympic Sized Giveaway

I love Christmas but now that it's over I'm ready to start thinking about the 2014 Olympic Games. I cannot wait to wear our Canadian colours proudly, watch the opening ceremony, and start cheering on our amazingly talented athletes.

Every year I like to celebrate the Olympics with themed snacks. I just love making things that will make my friends and family smile and get into the Olympic mood. The food must taste good, be easy to make (so that I don't miss a minute of the excitement), and of course resemble an Olympic sport. 

This year I decided to make a fun layered dip topped with a curling end zone. I like to think that it might help the Canadian teams become victorious, but if not, I know it made my family smile. And since Yoplait is a proud supporter of Team Canada at this year's Olympics, I incorporated Yoplait into my recipe. 

Read on for my recipe and also for a great giveaway to help you get decked out in style for this year's Olympic Games!

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Merry Christmas from Delish in a Dish

My family is opening up stockings, enjoying freshly baked breakfast pastries, and drinks mimosas right now. It is a fabulous day and thank you for spending a moment of your time to join us. 

Today I am sharing a cookie recipe from a cookie exchange I went to this year, because if you're anything like me - you always have room for another cookie, especially on Christmas! 

I love these cookies because they're easy to make and delicious, perfect for a Christmas afternoon treat. I used preserves I received as a gift from the Preservation Society, a small Montreal preservation company that makes wonderful little jars of goodness, to fill my Sacher Torte Cookies. 

I used a mix of the traditional apricot jam (Preservation Society's Apricot Jam with honey and chamomile) and some of their special batch wild strawberries soaked in elderflower liquor. I think I need another taste to figure out which one I liked best! 

Sunday, 22 December 2013

La Belle Patate

Does anyone out there make their own rolls for the holidays anymore? I used to think it was too much work, but then I discovered this incredible potato roll recipe that you make in a muffin tin.  It uses up leftover mashed potatoes and creates moist little rolls that are the perfect size for mopping up gravy or snacking on before dinner. 

I don't know about you, but I think making your own rolls and freezing them a few days before Christmas would be the perfect way to impress a mother in law at the big day's dinner. Plus, you can also half the recipe to get 12 rolls and a loaf of delicious raisin bread for breakfast. Who could say no to that now?

Thursday, 19 December 2013

The Ultimate Grilled Cheese

Sometimes I get a craving for a grilled cheese sandwich made on white bread with a Kraft singles or two. I don't know what it is about those sandwiches, but they remind me of being a kid! 

However, the majority of times I want a grilled cheese sandwich, I want the ultimate grilled cheese sandwich. This means no skinny pieces of white bread, I want something crusty and full of flavour. And instead of Kraft singles, I want a cheese that I'm not embarrassed to love. And rather just serving my meal with bottled ketchup, I want something a little more special. 

Reading this, I think I probably sound like a food snob. But if a girl can't dream big about a sandwich,  what can she dream big about? 

Read on for my Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich, the one I wish all grilled cheeses were made of. 

Monday, 16 December 2013

Double the Fun

When I have friends over for a wine and appy party, I know I'd like to create a menu of entirely handmade little delicacies - but I also know that would only make me frazzled. I know I need to use my time wisely and make a few homemade appetizers and a few from the frozen or deli sections of my grocery store. 

The two appys I am sharing today start might come in handy for those of you that want to make things even easier. These appys start out as the same basic recipe and then ever off into two different directions so you can have even more choices besides the wheel of Brie. 

Get ready to run out to grocery store for wonton wrappers because these recipes need them. :) 

Friday, 13 December 2013

White Christmas Lasagna

Have you ever seen a heirloom pumpkin? They're huge, beautifully unique, and edible. I wouldn't suggest getting one for carving a jack o lantern next year because they're much too thick, but I would suggest getting one of you want to make to a truly delicious lasagna this winter.

I think that this lasagna is the perfect pre-holiday meal because with all of the extra house guests that come over, you'll need a big casserole of something to serve for dinner. Plus, you'll probably have leftovers for all those late night cravings when you're wrapping gifts.

And this lasagna is extra special because not only does it feed a lot of people, but there is an unexpected twist to it too. It's got a spicy curry kick to warm you up on a cold night and there is no tomato sauce for a white Christmas.

Curious yet? Read on for the recipe!

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Christmas Sliders

'Tis the season to be jolly and also to look for time saving ideas! December seems to fly by in my house every year and while I wish for an extra hour every day in December, Santa never gets me the gift I really need so I have to find the extra time I wish for another way.

One of the ways I save time is by visiting the Pillsbury area of my grocery store. I like to say I'll be serving homemade cinnamon buns in Christmas morning, but it hasn't happened yet so I always buy a big roll of Grands Cinnamon buns. And I like to think I'll be making my own buns to serve with Christmas dinner, but I always buy a package or two of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls, "just incase".

This year I am little more organized than other years because I'm not pretending that I'm going to be making everything from scratch. I know what's going to end up happening. This year I'm stocking up on Pillsbury goodies, but planning on making them a little extra special by adding a few little twists. 

On Christmas morning, I am planning on making Life Made Delicious' Easy Crescent Danish Rolls and I think I might make Life Made Delicious' crescent rolled covered Raspberry Baked Brie at least once between now and the big day - because when I have I ever turned down Brie?

But first I made some incredibly yummy and surprising simple Shrimp Sliders on Pillsbury Crescents for a happy appy at a potluck I recently went to. I know you're going to want to make a batch up yourself. Read on for the recipe!

Saturday, 7 December 2013

A Canadian Christmas Tradition

I don't know about the majority of people in Canada, but baking cookies is one of the biggest traditions we have during the holiday season. My mom and Nana used to bake tins of all sorts of types of cookies and froze them for the holidays. Then they would pull out little platters of them for dessert and tea throughout December. Now I do the same. 

The only thing that's different about my cookie baking is that I cannot decide on the list of cookies I should be baking. Any of my family could tell you Nana's list of holiday baking, but my list is ever changing. 

This year my cookie platters will have some of Canadian Living's new Cranberry Pistachio Tree Cookies, and as much extra effort as they are, I am very glad I made them. Just be sure to follow then recipe when it says to blanch and peel your nuts because it helps them stay a beautiful bright green. And learn from my mistake, you can actually buy shelled pistachios!

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Melt My Heart

I might live in one of the warmest areas of Canada, but it's still cold here in December. In fact, I don't even like going outside this time of year, unless I have to. And when I have to, I always like to warm up when I'm back inside with a cup of tea and a delicious treat. 

Today's post is a holiday cookie I made from Canadian Living's November magazine that brings the taste of winter indoors so you don't even have to get outside in order to enjoy a cookie. Instead, just eat one of these Minty Meltaways to feel like you're outside and then eat another cookie to warm yourself up. 

Friday, 29 November 2013

Three Cheers for Paneer!

I love Indian food, but I often seem to get it wrong when I try making it at home. Sure, of course I can pour a bottle of ready made sauce into a pan and we all lick our lips with anticipation of the yummy smells coming from the kitchen. But when it comes to making an Indian dish from scratch, I don't always get it right. 

But today I finally did it. I finally made a from scratch Indian dish taste like it was in an Indian restaurant. And since it's one of my favourite Indian dishes, I am pleased as punch. 

Palak Paneer has creamy little pillows of paneer, a delicious Indian cheese, floating around in an onion and spinach sauce flavoured with spices that Indian dishes are famous for. It might not be as spicy as some of the other dishes from India, but that's all right with me. 

Read on for the recipe, it's easier to make than you might think!

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Eggplant-cent "Meat"balls

Meatballs are universally loved and I have been struggling to find a veggie friendly meatball recipe that comes close to tasting like the real thing. Today's post does! 

You might think it's an easy task, but finding for a recipe that ends up with crispy, juicy, and flavourful balls that actually stay clumped together is hard. Most recipes seem to fall apart when I tried to make them and I ended making a "hash" for those dinners. But this recipe stuck together - and can be made without even the use of a single egg!  

I know that I'm excited to share this recipe, inspired by one from Connoisseurus Veg. It's delicious!

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Movember - Mo Sistas, Mo Cookies, and Mo-re

I like to think of myself as a Mo Sista this month. But before you start thinking I've been quietly growing a moustache behind your back, let me tell you that being a Mo Sista means helping to raise money and spread awareness in the battles against testicular and prostate cancer and mental health - all through the power of a moustache.

To start my journey as a Mo Sista, I decided I should put my talents to use and cook, bake, and creatively name my goodies. I thought about things that would be easy to make, fun to name, and about celebrity moustaches because what's a moustache without the likes of Burt Reynolds?

To start the fun I like the idea of inviting my good friend Burt Reynolds over for some Beet Reynolds Soup with mo croutons. :)

Read on for my recipe and save room for some Easy Mo Cookies. Then, if you're feeling generous, please click here to donate to a local Victoria, BC Movember team.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Crazy Ingredient Challenge - Onions and Gingerbread Spice

This month's Crazy Ingredient Challenge was the craziest yet. I love the holidays and I love gingerbread cookies, but when we were asked to pair gingerbread spice with onions, I almost didn't take part in the challenge. I couldn't come up with anything besides cookies to make with gingerbread spice and I knew that I did not want to try adding onions to cookies!

But then a month-before-Christmas holiday miracle happened and I came up with something delicious that I'll be making again before the holidays are upon us. And the gingerbread spice mix works surprisingly well in the recipe too.

My new Samosa Wonton Cups are perfect finger food for a holiday party and they're just as tasty as their more time consuming cousins too! Read on for the recipe!

Monday, 18 November 2013

My Recipe is in Country Woman Magazine!

Awhile ago I received a really exciting email from someone at Taste of Home magazine. I was told that they were considering using one of my recipes in a magazine and they wanted to know a little more about me. I quickly answered all of their questions and waited patiently for a response to hear if I made the cut.

After a couple of weeks of waiting patiently, I still hadn't heard back and I pretty much gave up. I knew lots of people had probably received the same email and there was only so much space in the magazine.

But last week something really exciting happened. I found a strange thick envelope in my mailbox and when I opened it up I found out that my recipe was actually chosen and featured in a Christmas edition magazine! The editor referred to me as "staff" and that made these cookies taste even sweeter than they did the first time I made them.

Check out my previous post for Rosemary and Lemon Tree Cookies, visit Country Woman's website, or pick up a copy of Country Woman to see me in print! :)

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Japanese Desserts

I was reading about a local Victoria, BC tea shop called JagaSilk and how they had delicious looking Strawberry Daifuku treats. I had no idea what those treats were, but I knew that I wanted to get my hands on one of them. The only problem was that this tea shop was open only from Tuesdays to Fridays and only from 12:00-5:00pm. I knew I would never get there. 

So I did what I do best, I researched how to make the treats myself. And I'm actually happy I did it this way because I'm pretty proud of the dessert I created. They look and taste great, plus I learned a new technique! 

Read on the recipe, inspired by one from Just One Cookbook, it's easier than you might have thought! 

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

The New Bolognese

I used to love a rich and hearty Bolognese sauce. I loved smelling it simmering on the stove and anticipating how comforting and delicious it would taste. And I thought that love affair was over when I stopped eating meat. Thankfully I was wrong. 

I just discovered this amazing recipe for a lentil Bolognese that is relatively quick to prepare and tastes just as good, if not better, than other beefy recipes I use to make. It was always slow cooking the veggies in the sauce that gave the best flavour, so I really shouldn't have been so surprised. 

The craziest part of this successful recipe is that I never thought I'd like lentils paired with pasta, I thought that any recipe that paired the two would be far too heavy. But I was again proven wrong, lentils and pasta are a match made in heaven. 

Don't believe me? Read on for the yummy recipe inspired by one from Clean Eating magazine.

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Pizza Provençal

Pizza is one of the few foods that I love to gorge myself with. I could eat pizza until I literally burst. All that dripping cheese, hot tomato sauce, and toppings galore make me tingle with happiness. But I've just discovered a truly gourmet pizza that begs to be savoured in ways my typical Friday night pizza can't imagine. And it's easy enough to make at home. 

The recipe is from this month's Chatelaine magazine but since they only included a delicious pizza dough recipe and a handful of suggested topping, I like to think that my new favourite go to gourmet pizza is sort of my own. 

Read on for the recipe! 

Thursday, 7 November 2013

The Canadian Harvest on Vancouver Island

There's something about the crispness in the air that makes me think of root veggies. And although root veggies go perfectly with a roast chicken, my favourite way to serve them is Asian tempura style.

Maybe it's because tempura done right is just as crisp as the autumn air or maybe it's because of the amazing China Town in my home of Victoria, BC, but I think that root veggies and tempura are a perfect pairing. So when I found out that our November Canadian Food Experience Project challenge was to write about a Canadian harvest experience, I knew I had to share my delicious tempura recipe.

My only secrets to perfect tempura are to use only drier veggies like squash, beans, and broccoli and to make sure that your batter is really cold. Now that you know those two tricks, you'll be making tempura like pro. So read on for my recipe and get started!

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Super Quick Pad Thai

Quick dinner recipes have been calling out my name recently and I think it's because of the recent time change. I know that we gained an hour on Sunday, but now we are stuck with extra early dark nights. And those dark night trick me into thinking I need to serve dinner as quick as possible because it must be late! 

Today dish is a perfect dish for nights when I feel like dinner should already be on the table. It's a really quick Pad Thai that might make your family do a double take on how quickly you whipped it up. 

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Harry Potter Pumpkin Pasties and a Giveaway!

My post on Harry Potter Butterbeer Cupcakes was so well received that I just had to create a second dish from my favourite movie franchise to share with everyone as a thank you! And if you read on past the recipe, there's a little giveaway opportunity at the end of this post too.

I absolutely love pie so choosing my second Harry Potter themed dish to share with you was incredibly easy. I always envisioned the Pumpkin Patsies sold on the Hogwart's Express as little Cornish Pasties style pies stuffed full of pumpkin. And if those pumpkin filled treats were good enough for Harry, I knew that they'd be perfect for me too.

I know they sound simple, but the magic created when these Pumpkin Pasties bake is truly amazing. But of course we all already knew that because they weren't featured in Harry Potter for nothing!

Thursday, 31 October 2013


Did you know that jack-o-lanterns were originally made out of all sorts of vegetables? It's been said that today's North American jack-o-lanterns could have been derived from how the Irish carved lanterns out of beets, turnips, and other veggies to guide evil spirits away on All Hallow's Eve.

I'd like to say that this is why I made these Jack-O-Peppers for dinner tonight, but I actually just saw a few fun versions on good old Pinterest and had to make up a few myself. Who knew they'd be so easy and fun?!

Monday, 28 October 2013

Boo Cakes

I'm not going to pretend that these are the most beautiful cupcakes I've ever made. I know I should have piled the frosting higher so they looks more like ghosts, but I am more a cake girl than a frosting girl, so they stayed short. But looks aside, these Boo Cakes are really fun for Halloween and tasted great. 

If you want to put extra frosting on your cakes to make them more ghost-like, just double up the frosting recipe and do it! I'd love to see a picture of them looking almost too delicious to eat! 

Read on for my delicious Seven Minute Frosting recipe to top delicious Boo Cakes!

Friday, 25 October 2013

Alien Spaghetti

Today's recipe is absolutely one of the most fun and easy recipes I've ever made. And that's not a sentence I'm saying lightly. These were leftovers I was proud to show off in the lunch room the next day. I was proud to share such a fun recipe with anyone that asked about it and was excited to be able to remember the few short steps it took to make the dish come alive.

The fact that it's perfect for sharing in October is a big bonus. The dish is a healthier version of one from Clotilde Dusoulier's The French Market Cookbook and it's shocking pink colour makes it perfect for remembering that October is breast cancer awareness month. Plus it reminds me of Alien Spaghetti and that makes it perfect for Halloween too! :)

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Monster Mash

Is it just me or does everyone want to start bobbing their head, dancing about, and smile when they hear the words to the "Monster Mash"? I don't think of myself as a great singer, or even a not bad singer, but I can't even help but to start singing along when I hear that song.

At least Halloween is supposed to be scary, right?

To get in the Halloween spirit this year, I'll be sharing fun Halloween themed dishes in each post from now until the Big Day. The first one is my version of Life Made Delicious' Spooky Shepherd's Pie.  Life Made Delicious' version is perfect for a family that loves ground beef and my version is a great option of a vegetarian family. Other than that, the main difference is that ghosts haunt Life Made Delicious' version and green monsters are mashing on top of mine.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Crazy Ingredient Challenge - Broccoli and Pumpkin Puree

I really enjoyed this month's Crazy Ingredient Challenge and didn't really think that our pairing was too difficult. Chocolate and cauliflower - that was weird but I didn't really embrace the challenge with my Spicy Chocolate Dusted Cauliflower. Caramel and avocados was tough too but I think my Creamy Avocado Salad with Caramel Almonds turned out great. And I barely made tomatoes and coconut work with my Tomato Soup Cupcakes and Caramel Frosting. But pumpkin purée and broccoli - I paired those veggies together in a flash and made a delicious dinner too! 

I suppose it helped that I love eating both those veggies. And it probably also helped because I like to think my Thai curries are one of my best dishes. Read on to see if you agree!

Friday, 18 October 2013

Awesome Veggie Sandwich Encore

The other day I shared a yummy sandwich with you and it got me thinking that the world needs more vegetarian sandwiches. So what could I do but create another amazingly yummy veggie sandwich. This one is filled to the brim with fresh flavours that I think you might normally associate with a farmer's market, so that's what I'm calling it - The Farmer's Market Sandwich. 

Now who wouldn't want a sandwich like this? 

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Mediterranean Veggie Sandwiches

After a big Thanksgiving meal, the last thing I'm interested in is figuring out what to cook next. I prefer to use up leftovers and make a sandwich. If you made a turkey, I know you'll be making a turkey sandwich. But the question is if you'll be adding cranberry sauce and dressing like I use to do. 

If you didn't make a turkey, or have already run out of leftovers, that's where things might get a little trickier. Never fear because my yummy Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich is here! It's full of awesome veggies, flavour, and my favourite mushroom pâté. It's perfect for a no thinking, yummy meal. And if you made the pâté to serve as an appetizer yesterday, it's even more perfect! 

Sunday, 13 October 2013

One Dish Veggie Thanksgiving

Since this Thanksgiving I won't be serving a turkey, I've been experimenting with lots of veggie friendly options for the big day. I have looked at tofurkey and quite honestly, I'm not impressed. They look a little grey and unappetizing. Instead I'm going the veggie side dish route and lots of them! 

Side dishes have always been my favourite Thanksgiving food anyway, so why not just enjoy lots of yummy sides? I'll make sure that there's some protein in there, but it won't be the star on the plate. It might be a mix of beans in a yummy filling served in a squash instead. 

Here's one of my first 2013 Thanksgiving experiments. This dish is almost exactly out of a recipe from last month's Canadian Living magazine. I just swapped their rapini for broccoli because I love broccoli and changed the dressing a little too. I think it turned out great!  

Saturday, 12 October 2013

Sweet Turk-tato

Happy Thanksgiving Canada!  I know most of you are enjoying turkey this weekend, but this short and sweet post is a smile for those of you that are choosing to enjoy something other than turkey. It's a sweet turk-tato! Or in other words, a sweet potato shaped like a turkey.

Can you believe my mom actually found this sweet potato for me? I almost couldn't believe it, but I'm happy she did. :)

Now I can't wait to hear what it's like when it's roasted and carved up!

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Kitchen Sink Soup

I know I am ready for winter when I start filling my grocery cart and fridge with more food than I can possibly eat in one week. I just see yummy looking ingredients, detour from my carefully planned list, and fill up my grocery cart. Doing may make me seem like part squirrel, but it also has helped me to come up with really yummy recipes. 

Today's recipe is compliments of my having binge bought far too much kale, leeks, and carrots at the farmers market and from having stock piled too many dried beans in my cupboards. And I'm happy it happened because this soup was delicious! 

Monday, 7 October 2013

Preserving Summer

October's Canadian Food Experience Project challenged everyone to preserve something. I wondered about trying my hand at preserving beets, but thought that seemed like an unwanted opportunity to cover myself in pink stains.

Instead I decided to try preserving lemon. I love the flavour of preserved lemon and have always wondered if it would be easy to do myself or if I should leave preserved lemons to the professionals and buy them already made.

Well I'm pleased to share that it's an easy process. The only thing you really need, besides lemons of course, is time and patience. These suckers take about three weeks to preserve. But in three weeks time, get ready for yummy Moroccan flavoured dishes because I'll be sharing them like crazy!

Friday, 4 October 2013

BrOc-tober Soup

It's October and time to start enjoying soups again. But to be completely honest with you, I made this soup on a chilly day in summer and saved sharing it with you until now because soups just seem more fall than summer. Plus calling this post BrOc-tober Soup was just too fun to pass up!

Although I change almost all recipes to make them my own, this soup recipe originally came from Martha Stewart's Meatless. I love that there's a can of protein filled beans in it to make it both creamy and filling. I would never have thought to use puréed beans in a broccoli soup, but now I know I'll do it again and again. 

Read on for the recipe!

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Mexican Green Goddess Dressing

Farmer's Markets are getting a little sad now. Oh there are still lots of delicious squashes, beets, and carrots, but the warm ripe tomatoes and happy little bundles of herbs are really thin these days. So, in honour of the warm summer days we've enjoyed, I'm giving a summer salad one last hurrah.

This weekend, when I'm planning for Thanksgiving, I'll start enjoying thoughts of roasted root veggies more. Today, I'll be enjoying a cerveza with my Mexican Green Goddess Salad! 

Read on for the chasing the soon-to-be-winter blues away recipe!

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Meat on the Side

I haven't always been a person who'd love to fill up on a fresh and delicious salad while enjoying meat on the side, but I sure am now. Now I love seeing as much fresh green as possible on my plate and seeing only just enough protein to keep me healthy. 

Today's dish is a light curry over a small bed of rice topped with a few plump shrimp and a big fresh salad. It's perfect for a healthy person on the go and filled with enough flavour to satisfy anyone. 

Ready for my fresh and fast recipe? Read on for it! 

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Easy Clean Up

While I love cooking, I hate cleaning up the kitchen. Usually my sweetie does the cleaning up and that's always a happy moment for me, but sometimes I do all the cleaning up too. Those nights I plan to cook something with as few dishes as possible.

This recipe is one I've seen on Pinterest and I took the idea and ran with it. It was too perfect for nights where I was cooking and cleaning up because there are only a couple dishes to do and it's delicious to boot!

Read on for my yummy Spaghetti Squash Alfredo, served in its own shell!

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Apple Crisp Granola a la Mode and a Giveaway! #OPAYOPA

Everyday day I get out the door with a full belly is an achievement to me. And when I get out the door with a belly full of something delicious, well that's a great achievement because I'm a sucker for anything delicious.

When I first heard the Yoplait was coming out with a new Greek yogurt, YOPA!, I got excited and could see lots of delicious breakfasts in my future. I have always loved Greek yogurt, but YOPA seems to take the cake because it's really good for you and tastes like it should be considered a dessert.

YOPA comes in lots of delicious flavours including Mmm Mango Tango, Lotta Piña Colada, and my favourite - Va Va Vanilla Bean. Plus there are lots of added benefits with choosing YOPA. YOPA has double the protein of regular yogurt, no fat, no article colours or flavours, no gelatin, and only 80 calories per serving.

To celebrate my love of YOPA, I created a yummy Apple Crisp Granola recipe that I like to enjoy "a la mode" with a healthy serving of YOPA Va Va Vanilla Bean. It's the perfect breakfast or the perfect dessert -and I should know because I've it enjoyed it both ways!

Read on for my recipe and a great YOPA giveaway!

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Second Place Is Pretty Darn Good

This summer I passionately and consistently entered Weston's Grill Up Summer contest. I didn't come up as a $10,000 winner but I did get chosen as a second place winner twice!

Before I start exciting you, let me tell you flat out that my prize had no monetary value. And that part is a little disappointing. But I am featured in a cookbook and I am pretty excited about that.

The first time was chosen as a second place winner, I turned down the prize. I was definitively honoured to be chosen as a winner, but I was told that a person could only win one prize and I wanted to go for gold. I wanted to win that $10,000 prize and that means that my Cherry Cola Pulled Pork sandwich isn't going to be featured in Weston's Grill Up Summer cookbook. But you can still read all about it on my blog.

Do you want to know what recipe of mine is being featured in the cookbook? Wait no longer, check it out online here or just read on for my yummy recipe!

Friday, 20 September 2013

Mysterious Tomato Soup Cake

I have finally tried the infamous and mysterious tomato soup cake and it's all thanks to this month's Crazy Ingredient Challenge! I can't imagine that any of you envy me when I say that the challenge was to cook something delicious with tomatoes and coconut, but I bet that you would envy me if you knew how delicious my dessert came out. 

I don't know what it is about a can of tomato soup that made my cupcakes so delicious, but I know that it somehow worked. And maybe the success wasn't all due to chance. I did make a couple of conscious choices when building my recipe. I chose a can of soup without herbs and spices, I added lots of cinnamon to the batter, and I made a delicious frosting for the top. 

Curious yet? Read on for my delicious recipe. 

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Super Salad

If you're someone who thinks that there is something about a salad that says diet food, you just haven't tried one of my salads. I don't mean that my salads are high in fat, I mean that my salads have enough oomph, flavour, and substance to leave you feeling full longer. 

And since I've paired today's salad with one of my favourite treats, green onion pancakes, it left me feeling full for a very long time. This feeling of being super full may have been because I had two helpings, but who's to say? I think that when a salad is that good, you should always have seconds! 

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Guilty Pleasure

One of the things I miss about eating meat is smearing a big chunk of pâté on a slice of baguette. I love the creamy texture and the rich flavour. Everything about pâté makes me feel guilty and in love, all at the same time. 

Luckily I found a way to relive all my guilty pleasures of eating pâté because I have made a truly decadent vegetarian version of my old favourite. I'm going to make it for my family at Christmas and I really don't think that they'll be able to tell the difference from the original version. Or maybe they will, because my Mushroom Pâté is a little bit better than the original.  

Friday, 13 September 2013

Chips and Dip

When I hear the words "chips and dip" I automatically think of thick cut potato chips, a huge bowl of French onion dip, and football. I also think of a couple hundred calories. I love chips and dip as much as the next girl, but I also want to be able to enjoy a crunchy chip and a silky dip without the crazy calories.

Thus my Cinnamon Apple Chips and Caramel Yogurt Dip were born. These chips are low fat, crunchy, incredibly yummy, and would make a great back to school gift for a teacher too. Plus, when they're served with this dip, oh boy, you had better make a double batch. Mine disappeared right   before my eyes. And I was the only one home too!

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Mad About You

Today my sister is flying to Madagascar for three months. I am a little envious of her adventure, but happy for her too because I imagine that there might be some delicious Madagascar vanilla in my future. And all the thinking I've been doing about the possible Madagascar vanilla has me thinking beautiful floral thoughts and playing with beautiful floral flavours. 

Today's dish celebrates the floral flavours of Madagascar and also acts as a farewell note to Mary. It's features a really inventive polenta made from cornmeal, silky puréed sweet potatoes, and coconut milk. I can't take credit for the concept because I read about it in an old cookbook from my local library, but I can take credit for making the dish really yummy. 

Safe flight and have fun, Mary. See you at Christmas! 

Monday, 9 September 2013

Southern Asian Fusion

When I watch reality cooking shows I love the episodes where the chef-testants have to fuse together two entirely different cuisines. I think of much of my cooking as fusion and think it is incredibly fun to cook that way. Not only am I always coming up with new dishes, but I'm also teaching myself new tricks. 

If I was on a cooking show today and pulled both Asian and southern cuisines, I wouldn't know what to cook. But today's dish is awesome tasting and shows that Asian and southern cuisines actually can go well together. 

Read on for my yummy Hoisin Glazed Tofu and Southern Veggie Medley. 

Saturday, 7 September 2013

My Cherished Canadian Recipe

For this month's Canadian Food Experience Project our challenge was to share a cherished Canadian recipe. It took me a little while to come up with what I would choose to share, but when it came to me, I was certain it was perfect. 

I grew up eating my Nana's shortbread cookies. Chocolate dipped, cookie pressed, plain, decorated, with a cup of tea, or without. I just plain love eating them. I know shortbreads may not seem like a Canadian recipe, but they definitely are Canadian to me. So many of our population came over from the UK and Scotland and joined our lovely country. And since I reinvented my Nana's recipe and added in some lavender bought from a lovely little Canadian farm, I know these particular shortbreads are one hundred percent Canadian. 

I chose to leave my lavender flowers whole, rather than mashing them into my sugar. I thought it gave the cookies a small farm look and pretty texture, but I know they'd be great however you choose to make them. Read on for the recipe!

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Perfect Fall Pasta

As much as I don't want to admit it, it's September now and that means the first day of fall is near. But this year, instead of getting annoyed that summer is almost over, I'm going to embrace fall's delicious flavours and dive into some new comfort food. 

Today's dish may look underwhelming at first, but when you taste it you will find that it's packed with roasted veggie flavour!  The sauce is made from tons of roasted veggies that get puréed into a heavenly smelling and tasting concoction. I topped mine with sliced almonds for a little extra crunch and thought each bite was perfect. 

Now, just to be clear, I'm not saying I'm ready for cold weather, but I am ready for cold weather food! So cold weather, you stay away for just a little while longer, ok?