Thursday, September 30, 2010

Tomato Focaccia

Do you ever have one of those mornings when you say to yourself "Better start making some bread", and as you start making your boring everyday bread that you've been making for the last two months, something makes you say "Hey! Stop being boring! Make that ciabatta bread recipe you've been eyeing forever! The one from the Martha Stewart cookbook!"
As you search for the recipe you realize the it's actually in the first volume of this cookbook series, the volume you don't own, the one you borrowed from the library, the one you're brain keeps confusing with the volume you do own. 
But alas, hope is not yet lost! What about this tomato focaccia bread? That's not boring! It might almost be considered exciting!....

No? You don't really have those mornings?

Yea me neither...
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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Brussels Sprout & Pecan Salad

I've been really curious about trying a brussels sprout salad, and have heard mixed reviews about raw ones, so I figured a good starting point would be with one that is slightly cooked.
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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Macaroni and Cheese

Good ol' Martha never fails me.

The first time I made this, I was a bit perplexed by how much work I was putting into dinner (I was working two jobs and time was not on my side). However the results are oh so rewarding, and you'll find yourself craving this indulgent mac and cheese far too often.  We love pairing it with something green and healthy (to keep the guilt at bay) and a glass of red wine.
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Monday, September 27, 2010

Balsamic Braised Brussels Sprouts

This is one of the first dishes I've ever made with brussels sprouts and I instantly loved it (as does everyone else I make it for).
However some might argue that it's not a true representation of the sprouts themselves. They're essentially overcooked, causing them to taste more bitter, but then covered in deliciously syrupy balsamicy goodness (with some bacon thrown in there for good measure).

So who cares if this isn't the most honest way to show the sprouts true flavours when you've got balsamicy goodness and bacon?

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Sunday, September 26, 2010


There is really nothing quite like the satisfaction that comes from brewing your own beer. 

A lot of people are surprised that we brew our own beer. And they're equally as surprised when they realize it tastes great, packs a punch, and costs so little! 

But what surprises me, is that more people don't brew beer at home.

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Saturday, September 25, 2010

Garlic & Fennel Burgers

I really can't take all the credit for this one.

The first time my husband made these burgers years ago, I was secretly weirded out and unsure of his "fennel in a burger" idea. I kept my skepticism to myself (or maybe I didn't...) and as soon as I took the first bite I was reminded that it's okay for me to blindly trust him with my taste buds. This man knows how to cook.

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Friday, September 24, 2010

Tomato Coconut Soup

When my husband and I lived in Calgary years ago, we were very fortunate to discover the Coup restaurant so quickly upon moving there. It instantly became a favourite, and when I recently heard the owners produced a cookbook I knew I just had to get my hands on it.

The bad news was it's only sold in their restaurant, but the good news was we had a quick vacation to Calgary already planned. We went there Sunday night and aside from the addition of Meet (the lounge now attached to the Coup) everything was just as we'd remembered. We ordered the dragon bowls with peanut satay, and pseudo sushi. We felt like we had never left.

Later that night after my husband dozed off in our lush hotel bed, I read the cookbook cover to cover, occasionally nudging him excitedly.
"Oooh pear, fennel and squash soup!"
"Look, here's the dragonbowl!"
"Ooh cashew yam burger!"

As you can imagine, he was not quite as excited as I was.

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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Knitted Hallway Rug

This is my first real knitting project. 

I got a few strange looks when I said I was knitting a rug. I still wonder why that was...
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Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Pickled beets, pickled radishes, pickled peppers, pickled carrots and just plain ol' pickles! I feel like I just can't stop canning.

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Monday, September 20, 2010


I think making bread is something everyone should learn how to do. Nothing compares to freshly baked bread, and you'd be amazed at what tasty loaves can result without much practice.

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Saturday, September 18, 2010

Spicy Vegetable Soup

This should be called the about-to-leave-for-vacation-empty-the-fridge-soup.

I wasn't expecting anything extraordinary. Just wanted some nice hot soup, and needed to get rid of some veggies before leaving for vacation. I didn't even really have a vision in mind of what this would taste like, but I did know two things.
First I wanted it to be fairly tomato based. A good friend of mine got me hooked on tomato based vegetable soups last year, and I just can't shake em. Second, I started to crave a spicy vegetable soup with an indian influence, just like the ones my husband used to make me when we first met.

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Friday, September 17, 2010


Last year my father sent my husband this book for his birthday. Within the first few minutes of flipping through it I saw the author gave a really simple method for making homemade yogurt, and just had to try it.

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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Hearty Carrot Ginger Soup

The addition of lentils and squash really make this old favourite feel heartier and healthier.

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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Barbecue Sauce

This book got me excited to make my own barbecue sauce and preserve it, but their recipe just didn't quite seem like what I look for in a BBQ sauce (carrots? apples? no thanks).

I found Big Al's Bar-B-Q sauce on which looked much more up my alley. It's described as being "sweet, smokey, with a little bite", so I upped the spice, and downed the sweet (oh and totally got rid of the ketchup in the recipe, yuck).

Sometimes my favourite part of making something new is seeing my husbands reaction, especially when it's something he's normally picky about (he loves store bought BBQ sauce and is very brand loyal).
I gave him a taste of it after some had been in the fridge for quite a few hours.

"WOW. That's really good." he said in disbelief. "It tastes like real barbecue sauce!"

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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Beet & Apple Slaw

The day before my husbands birthday, I asked him what kind of side dish he wanted with his birthday meal of BBQ'd burgers.

"Slaw." he replied.

"What kind of slaw?" I asked in return.

"I dunno, just slaw. That awesome one you make."

"You mean the apple & bacon one? Or the ginger carrot one? Or the one with the green onion & cilantro dressing? Or the mango one? Or the.." I trailed off trying to remember what magical slaw he was referring to.

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Monday, September 13, 2010

Strawberry Limeade

I know what you're going to say.
It's fall, and you're excited about it. You don't want any more light summery refreshing recipes.
I feel the same way too!

But when your husband comes home with a dozen zested limes*, you really have no choice but to make limeade.

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Sunday, September 12, 2010

Simple Patchwork Quilt

So here it is! My first ever quilt!

It's certainly not perfect, but I made it myself so I love it all the same.

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Friday, September 10, 2010

Cherry Tomato Pizza Margherita

Summer perfection in pizza form. Charred cherry tomatoes, fresh basil and mozzarella. Yum!
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Thursday, September 9, 2010


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I'm starting to think "If I can make it at home, I will" should be this blog's motto.
I've never made my own cooked and canned salsa before, and wasn't quite sure what I was looking for in a recipe. I found this one on and it looked like a good start. 
This salsa is hot, but balanced with acidity and a faint hint of sweetness. 

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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Green Bean & Beet Salad

The day I created this salad (with the help of my favourite book ever) I was clearly in an adventurous and confident mood. But I was honestly not expecting it to be this delicious! Everything just tastes so darn good together! 

This is also one of those dishes that really feels like a transition from summer to fall. 

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