Category Archives: Food

Triple B… and Gluten Free… Beer Braised Beef becomes a take away meal

Finding time to get together with friends can sometimes prove challenging when everyone’s schedules need to converge to make it happen.  We made arrangements last month with new friends who have recently moved into our neighbourhood.  The lady of that house has just recently found out that she needs to eat gluten-free… after years of struggling with a bad stomach, at 40, cut out gluten and the symptoms cleared up.  So when we coordinated on a day, I offered to bring the main meat dish for the meal.

We just filled the freezer up with this years side of beef.  We love knowing where our food is coming from.  We are very fortunate and grateful to have the ability to raise our own cattle and then get the satisfaction of exceptionally great tasting cuts all year.

Our friend Carla Johnson, has written a great book called ‘Cooking With Sin…Great recipes dipped in alcohol and wrapped in a wonderful story…’   She also has a blog,

I know… you are wondering where I am going with this…  well Carla wondered if I had a great Gluten Free recipe that featured alcohol (that’s the Sin part of her book!) and whether I could give with her one so that she could share it on her blog.  I got to thinking that I could combine my homegrown beef with a some beer, get a nice hearty winter meal AND a blog post at the same time.

I decided to take an existing recipe and adapt it to Gluten Free.  The recipe also called for it to be cooked in a crock pot and that the beef be cut into stew sized chunks.  I did neither.  I did use the slow cooker setting

on my oven,  but I hadn’t left quite enough time for that so I ended up finishing it on top of the stove.  In the recipe I won’t put the stove option as this step would actually make the recipe more time-consuming and most home cooks are looking for ease these days.  Not everyone is interested in slow food…

Beer Braised Beef (Gluten Free)

5 slices thick bacon, diced
3 large onions, halved and sliced
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp cider vinegar
black pepper
vegetable oil
3-4 lbs round steak, 3/4 inch thick cut in desired portion sizes
all-purpose celiac flour or other GF flour
1 bottle, 12 oz, of GF beer or ale
1 cup GF beef stock or other stock or water.
2 tsp dried thyme ( I used more than the original recipe)

Cook the bacon dice until crisp and transfer to paper towels and set aside. Add onions to drippings and cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes, until soft.  Sprinkle brown sugar over onions and increase the heat to medium high and cook onions until they are golden,  about 8 minutes. Add vinegar, salt and pepper.  Transfer the onion mixture to your baking dish. Large enameled oval roaster works well.

Sprinkle the beef with a bit of salt and the flour.  Heat the oil in a large skillet and brown the beef on both sides.  Transfer the beef to the roaster on top of the onions.  Add the beer and stock to the heated pan and scrape up the brown bits,  reduce the liquid a bit, then pour it over the beef in the roaster.  Top with the bacon and thyme.

Cook in a 350 over, approx 2 hours.  Check after 1.5 hours for desired tenderness. Alternately, you could slow cook for about 8 hours or braise on the top of the stove for about 1.5 hours.  More stock would be needed for stove top braising.

When I checked my beef about an hour before we left, I realized that I had not left enough time to use the slow cook setting in my oven.  I have a VERY large All Clad straight sided Saute pan so I transferred the beef and liquid to it and braised it on the stove top.  The result was great and the liquid cooked down nicely.

The flavours in this dish are considered Flemish… or Belgian… so our friends cooked up Belgian frites(twice cooked) to go with it.  I must say the combination was fabulous.  Will definitely be adding this one to the cooking roster and with the deep fryer that I hope to be getting for Christmas… I am sure you will be seeing a future post when I start experimenting making fries….yum.


Posted by on December 18, 2011 in Food, Recipes


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Toronto… the centre of the universe… or is it? Maybe its Orangeville.

Earlier in fall, I went on a road trip to the wonderfully concrete and highway heavy Toronto.  I don’t usually go along with Don, but decided to this time as there were some very cool extra events planned.

Our friend Rodney Hough (, arranged for me to cook at his former restaurant One99 in Orangeville (  They have a program at the restaurant where wannabes from the public can come and cook with a chef for the afternoon and part of the evening…. then they feed you a fabulous meal(and wine)   This dinner had been a while in the making…  I don’t often get to Toronto.  When I do, I sometimes see Rodney, sometimes not. He and I have been conversing about all things food related for a number of years now. And then finally, our schedules converged and we had a date.

I spent the afternoon hanging out with Chef Roger and we made a variety of dishes.  Then for part of the dinner service, I cooked with Chef’s Mike and Craig and got to serve out some mains.  Mike is the Executive Chef and Craig, his brother, is the Sous Chef.  The team at One99 is exactly that….a team.  They respect each other and all get along famously.  The experience was fabulous and hopefully they will have me back one day to do it again.


Vension tenderloin 'wrapped' in a mousseline of shrimp and scallop

Vension tenderloin ‘wrapped’ in a mousseline of shrimp and scallop

-mousseline usually means that its bound with egg whites, but in this case we kept everything very cold, bowl, crustaceans, blade,  then pureed in spurts to bind the proteins.  Then we ‘wrapped’ the mousse onto the outside of the tenderloin piece, held on with caul fat.  After assembled, put all back in the fridge to keep together.  Upon an order, its baked in the oven until rare and served, cut in 3, on some Spaetzle with vegetables.


  • 1 pound of flour
  • 5 eggs
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt


…and you need a Spaetzlebrett!  This is the way its made in Germany.  I must say, labour instensive but oh so fun…. ( …. so instead of going into the long winded way we did it… here is a link to what we did. ( I know, I cheated, but I was so busy at this step that there are no pictures)

After the we pulled it out of the water, we put it on large, parchment lined pans and put a little oil on it to prevent sticking.  Then it was all put in a fridge drawer and single portions were pulled out as needed… sauteed with some butter and you have it.  A few blanched, then sauteed veg and the dish is ready.

Slow cooked Duck legs

Some of the other items were, smoked harvest vegetable soup, wasabi crusted tuna, mussells, duck…

Serving up Mussells

I had a blast doing this and hopefully will get to do it again in the future.


Posted by on December 4, 2011 in Food


Tags: , , , ,

Loco Moco….and no we are not crazy… just crazy for this dish!

I was recently on a road trip to the wonderfully concrete and highway heavy Toronto.  I don’t usually go along with Don, but decided to this time as there were some extra events planned.

One of the events was our REIN meeting.  While attending it, one of our REIN members, Andrew MacDonald asked if I could send him my loco-moco rescipe….I said I would send it to him… so if I have to type out the recipe anyways… I thought I may as well make a blog post.  Unfortunately I have never taken a picture of the dish when I have made it, but as it is such a basic dish I have attached others I have found that look the same.  So here we go…

Patties (can easily be doubled)
1 lb ground beef
1/4 – 1/2 cup grated white onion (not choppped)
salt and pepper
beef broth ( can just use hot water and some bovril, or knorr or…?)
corn starch
worchestire sauce, ketchup, dijon mustard
hot cooked white rice
carmelized onions (optional)

I didn’t give quantities because I found it gets adjusted due to everyone’s personal taste. Start with 1 tbsp of cornstarch, and see if you like the consistency.  I like to keep it a bit runny so that the rice gets a bit goopy.  Some recipes don’t have the ketchup or the dijon, but I found it added some depth to the flavour.  Also, one time I carmelized onions on the side and served them as a layer in the dish.  In Hawaii, where we discovered this, if you go to the local food places… the dish is basically always served with macaroni salad.  This seems very odd to me, but I think they just serve macaroni salad on the side of most platter meals there.

Heat your NON-non stick fry pan…. or as you would know it,  your STICK ON pan…. get it nice and hot, add some oil.  Place the patties in the pan, sear and get a litte charred… you want it to cook on a bit and get some ‘brown bits’ in the pan.  Flip and do the same thing other side.   Place burgers off to the side on a plate.   With the pan hot, add the broth, reduce down.  Add the worcestershire, ketchup and dijon ( just a little of each)  I like to have mixed them together in a small dish ahead of time.  Mix the cornstarch with water.. then slowly incorporate it into the pan, ensuring you don’t get lumps. Add some butter when its nice and smooth.

In a NON stick pan,  cook your eggs to your liking. Eggs do not cook well in pans that are not non-stick… Sunnyside up, or over easy is preferable… you want the yolk to be a bit runny.  To put it all together….rice, hamburger patty, gravy, egg, a little more gravy… Tip:  cook the eggs right at the last minute,  have the dishes ready to go and then serve immediately.

And then say …. ahhhhhh… comfort food.  This is a really basic easy dish that never fails to deliver.  We are off to Hawaii again very soon and I am looking forward to trying a few more versions of it.

1 Comment

Posted by on November 16, 2011 in Food, Recipes


Tags: , , , , , , ,

Sautéed Beets… Nope, nobody has done it.

Sautéed Beets?  Well I looked high and low on the internet and couldn’t find a recipe that said to pan fry beets at high heat, with a little bit of salt and let carmelize… The only recipes I could find were the latest rage ones that have you wrapping beets in foil and putting in the oven…And there were recipes to do this… and more recipes.. and even more recipes.  But I didn’t want to heat the oven and the house so I figured I could just make it up as I went.

And so my sautéed beet and feta and pine nut salad was exactly that… made up as I went.  Beets have a lot of sugar so it only made sense that they would saute very nicely… making that nice crispy outside crust that we like to call carmelized.

I have to say that I was never a beet fan.  I am not sure why, but it must have been a throw back to all those ‘weird’ foods that I refused to eat as a child.  When I think about it, I didn’t like anything with too much colour.  Beets, tomatoes, mustard, relish, lettuce, most fruit, all peppers…. Its amazing I grew fast and furious and was towering over my classmates by grade 5. Obviously eating your veg doesn’t have a lot to do with height.

Then a few years back I visited Earl’s with my Mom and I had a salad that had beets in it and I was hooked.

Here is what I made up:  Peel your beets, take care to not get EVERYTHING purple. Chop the beets in small dice.  This would be about 1/4 inch squares.  Heat the pan then add olive oil.  Throw in beet dice, add a little salt and start sauteing.  Get them nice and coated in the oil.  Lower the heat and stir/shake them up every so often.  They go through a few stages.  They will sweat out, then the sweated out liquid will steam them a bit soft,  then they will eventually carmelize on the outside.  You can even toss a bit more salt and some sugar in he pan to help it along.  It will take about 30 minutes.



I also lightly toasted pine nuts on another burner while the beets were cooking.

To serve:

Goat feta (young and not too salty) small dice

Pine nuts (toasted)



Olive Oil and salt, if needed, to dress.

I toss it all together and the feta ends up pink.  If you don’t care for the ‘pink’ feta,  add it only at the end on the top of the salad but the result with ‘pink’ feta is better.

1 Comment

Posted by on October 10, 2011 in Food, Recipes


Tags: , , , ,

And then it was Tesco…takeaway meal, microwave, bottle of wine, telly…all in Ludlow. Heaven Forbid.

Where do I begin with this post. Last night while I was still on adrenaline after the fiasco, I started to blog. I decided to start basically where I had left off… Actually no, I did skip a few days in London, but those experiences have been catalogued on Facebook so they can be added later.

It was a good thing I delayed, I may have been somewhat more scathing in reporting on our final Ludlow Food Festival experience.

Let me back up. Years of spending dining moments with other foodie friends in London, it was suggested that we may want to attend the Ludlow Marches Food Festival. This 3 day extravaganza in Shropshire County England, has a bounty of local producers that come and display themselves and tantalize our appetites with food, ale, cider and spirits, all produced in a 4 county radius.



There is an ale trail, a sausage trail,a bread trail and a pudding trail. This all in addition to tents upon tents set up in and around the Castle and its grounds. It is delightful to see a Castle being used for one of its original uses. For three days, you can sample food and drink, take in countless demonstrations on 3 or 4 separate stages, take Slow Food workshops, and join the trails and grade their offerings.



We decided the sausage trail was for us. You purchase a ticket for £3.50 that is really a form, you wander around the town to find the five sausage tents, line up, eat and grade. At the end you take your grading form to a final stop, hand in your form and in exchange, you get your favourite sausage in a bap! It’s a great deal, yummy and a lot of fun.

The ale trail would have you stop in at 14 pubs with a mini cask on a lanyard, sample and grade the same. Folks usually do it over 2 days. You get the picture. The pudding trail isn’t about what we call pudding at home, pudding over here refers to desserts of all types.

So back to the fiasco. From Canada, prior to leaving, I tried to arrange a few of the Slow Food workshops and also snag a reservation at the ‘pop-up’ Michelin Restaurant that sets up inside the Castle. The problems I ran into were that both wanted money ahead of time to secure the reservation. The workshops were not expensive so I did what I tell others not to… I send some cash in the post. I did it with a guarantee on it and as it wasn’t much, I wasn’t too worried.

The festival restaurant was another story. The costs of wiring money were a bit prohibitive from my bank and I had left it a bit too long so mailing a money order wasn’t an option. I sent a note back and asked if we could pay upon arrival. They were very accommodating so we were set.

On Friday when we got to the festival, we checked in with the restaurant and everything was in order for our Saturday night reservation. I had previously let them know about Don’s food allergies, so all was going according to plan.

In the interim, sausages, ales, ciders, wine, more sausages, slow roasted pork, wood fired pizza, goat cheese, sheep cheese, charcuterie … to name a few… abounded.

After heading back to the Elm Lodge


where we were staying, we napped, then primped, then strolled first to a close ‘locals’ pub with Sky sports (Man U vs Bolton), then to another pub near the Castle.

Our reservation was for 8:30 pm so we made our way at 8:15 and were escorted through the grounds to the venue and greeted by some very lovely ladies who appeared to have everything under control.

The place was humming. Our escort had told us 100 people were dining and we were all to get 8 courses…so 800 covers were going to pump out of the ‘pop-up’ kitchen… Or so they thought….

With our drink order placed, we chatted about how lovely the setting was… About the other people around us… And then waited…and waited… and waited…and waited….

The drinks had come, but that was it. After 45 minutes we had not had the server come back. There were LOTS of staff, and they were in perpetual motion. Not sure what all the moving about was about, but it was not to bring food. We checked with a server, who seemed surprised… Finally I went to the entrance and checked in with the lovely ladies… They were horrified and immediately we received 2 Kir Royale appertifs…this on top of the bottle of wine we had started. Seeing as it was now 9:30 pm, I had to keep a lid on the wine consumption or the 8 courses would be a bit of a blur. Then one of the lovely ladies came over and comped our wine… I knew we were in trouble then…

We did get the first course, Don could only eat half of it…(pureed broccoli soup with whipped Stilton/blue cheese)… And I did get one slice of bread. And when my sugar levels bottomed out, I got up, screwed the lid back on the wine… And we left. The lovely ladies at the entrance were not surprised nor did they try to stop us. I guess something had imploded in the kitchen and they knew what was coming.

 I mention here a curious moment… Actually two, almost like a premonition, on our way from ‘locals’ pub to pub #2, Don inquired about whether I was excited for this anticipated feast… I said that I had lowered my expectations around things like this as I have been let down too many times. The other was the gal that served the wine, she made a specific gesture of leaving us the cap for the wine in case we didn’t finish. 8 courses, 1 bottle of wine and no driving? Seemed rather odd that we wouldn’t finish it….

But there it was… Our comped wine came with us and my inability to pay ahead of time meant that no further action was required by anyone.

We left the Castle and the Festival behind, stopped at Tesco(like Safeway) on the 1 mile walk home and picked up Spaghetti Carbonara


for me and Chicken Tikka Masala for Don.

We had a little kitchen where were staying and we heated up our late night dinner and turned on the telly…




And that was Ludlow.


(Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device in Europe)


Posted by on September 11, 2011 in Food, From the Travel Files


Tags: , , ,

London…food, fun, friends…

The days in London have been just stunning. We arrived on Thurs afternoon to glorious sunshine and unseasonable temperatures. Most of us relate London to London Fog… There is a reason that company chose that name to sell coats!

In all our visits here, we have been very fortunate with the weather. I can count the times that I have had to use an umbrella. Don insists that its the sun that follows us around…

Lucky we had a suitcase full of warm weather wear for our imminent Italy portion of this trip. The best way for us to combat jetlag is to go walking outside during the day and visiting in the evening. The combination of the light and talk therapy does the trick.

As soon as we got here on Thurs, our friends from Reading, Andy and Djura met us at our hotel. The London Grosvenor Square Marriott had once again provided us with a suite and some champagne and red wine, so we met up in our sitting room. My phone had a breakdown so the pictures from the first day are missing….

The next night we met up with Graham and Lucy and hit a great tapas restaurant, Salt Yard. It is such a popular place that we had a set allotted time of 2 hrs, 630 – 830 pm.

Don and I had been there in the past and it was even better this time. We stopped in at a pub on both ends of the visit and then saw Graham and Lucy off on the train to their home in Faversham.

Graham has just started a food blog himself so in the future we will be swapping ideas and recipes. Looking forward to staying in touch over the miles in all things related to food and travel.

Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device in Europe

Leave a comment

Posted by on September 4, 2011 in Food, From the Travel Files


Tags: , , , , , , ,

Peachy Keener… or just keen on peaches?

My favourite fruit is peaches.  But not just fresh peaches that come at the height (or like this year, at the end) of summer….and I love those same peaches canned. I grew up with perfectly canned peaches.  My Mom loved to make the jars as beautiful to look at as they were to eat.  Mine are just good to eat… I don’t have the patience, nor the time, for perfectly halved, canned peaches.  Mine are sliced… and every which way too as you will see later on.

Even just driving home with a box in your car is an experience… that sweet, fresh, scent of peaches.  We are lucky because the Okanagan area of BC is not far, only a 4 hr drive away, so to get boxes of fresh peaches is easy and cheap.

Today I got a box at Thumper Patch for $14.99 and all were ripe except for a few.  Today dawned overcast and by 8:30 the rain was pouring.  Can’t ask for better circumstances for a canning day.  If I had been REALLY motivated I would have planned on more, but as you know, I like small batches…Seriously, it took barely an hour to get them all in the canner.

I use a website as my go-to place to double check my quantities etc.  This site is full of all sorts of processing information… AND you really should check it out, just to see the lady who is sharing all this knowledge…  She is so cute!  and seems to know everything about processing the bounty from the garden to the orchard.

I use an immersion canner.  The lady on the website, uses a steamer canner, though the powers that be in the US food administration have not ‘approved’ steamer canning, this lady seems to still be alive after years of using one.   I also inherited a pressure canner… but so far have no built up enough confidence to attempt to use the thing.

Canning peaches is easy,  not as easy as apricots, but a close second.  Out of 20 lbs of peaches, about 17.5 lbs will give you 7 quarts… unless you eat too many as you are peeling.  Here is how I do it:

Turn on the ice machine,  or just use your ice cubes from the freezer.  You kind of have to plan a bit so that you have ice made.

Wash and rinse 7 quart jars, 7 rings, 7 lids

Put the jars in a pan in the oven set to 200 F

Put lids and rings in a pot of water and heat to hot, not boiling,  to sterilize.  Remember everything needs to be sterilized, sterilized, sterilized…

Get a BIG pot of water boiling,  I use my All-clad 8 qt. Put it on the front burner, the lids and rings on the back burner behind it.

Get your sugar-water ready.  I make light syrup and could put it on the back element behind the canner, but I have a nifty portable GE hot plate and put it on high on it so that you have a bit more room on the stove top… so I use it.

Light syrup – 2 cups sugar, 6 cups water.  I did it double but could have just made 1.5 times,  get it to boil, then let cool down a bit.

Fill canner up, cover, and turn to high.

Fill your sink up with cold water and add ice… put an empty, large container beside the sink, have fruit fresh on hand.

Drop 10 peaches or so into the boiling water, boil a minute maybe… not too long, remove from boiling water and drop in ice water.  Now the peels come off very easily, peel, cut and pit and put slices in the empty, large container.  With every layer, sprinkle some fruit fresh to prevent browning. After your 10 peaches are cut, drop 10 more into the water that has come back up to boil.  I just eyeball it and leave about 8 or 9 peaches over from a 20 lb box and trust I have enough for the canner full.

Jars come out of the oven, line them up on the counter with the pot of lids and rings, the pot of syrup, and start filling the jars.  When 7 are filled, pour the syrup over the peaches up to 1/2 inch below lip, shove a knife down the side of the jar to remove air bubbles, fill with more syrup if needed,  WIPE the rims really well, place lids, then rings on the jars, put jars in canner, starting with the centre spot.  Lower the jars on the rack into the canner, bring the canner up to boil and set timer for 25 minutes.

When 25 minutes are up, I raise up the rack, get out the jar grabber and put all the jars on a rack to cool. Some of them seal immediately, some take a bit longer. By the time I was finished with this post, all of the jars were sealed. When they have cooled, wipe them down because the syrup squeezes out and over the sides and will attract… ahem…. mice… Label and put them away… and wait for winter so that you can eat them!

Leave a comment

Posted by on August 22, 2011 in Food, Recipes


Tags: , , , , , ,

Pass the beans please… the fabulous green beans…

Beans are another fabulous garden treat.  And they are very kind while existing in the garden.  Did you know that when you plant green beans, the plant takes the nitrogen floating around in the air, converts it into something usable and then leaves the nitrogen in the soil?  Its called nitrogen fixation  This also means that if you have a nitrogen loving plant like corn, you could plant them together (think pole beans growing up corn stalks!)  or just rotate them.  This means beans one year, corn the next in the same space.Right now the beans are ripening hard and fast.  We love green beans but then the zucchini is also doing the same thing as is the basil… well you know what I mean,  sometimes we can’t get everything eaten and so then I put it up for the winter… or the fall… or for next week when I can get to it.  I was feeling rather energetic this week so when I got a bucket of beans from the garden, I decided to make Green Bean Soup.

When Don and I moved here, I introduced everyone to Green Bean Soup.  I grew up on the stuff,  Don’s family had never heard of it.  The Mennonites, my heritage, had a way to make something from everything they had too much of.  I guess they didn’t just plant a few beans, they planted lots of beans.  Then when the beans came, they had to come up with something. Seeing as Ham is a Mennonite favourite, it only makes sense they took a ham bone and made a soup out of it. The trusty book I received from my Mom when we got married,  the Mennonite Treasury of Recipes, has the first section as Mennonite Dishes.

Thank you Mrs D. Warkentin from Steinbach… I wonder if you know how often your recipe has been used since this book was published?   The key ingredient in the recipe is the summer savoury.  Its unique taste is integral.  When I make the recipe, I make the ham stock and let it cook quite a long time, then I let it cool to skim the fat off.  I am happier with the end result if the fat is skimmed first… as is my waistline!

One can only make so much soup in the heat of summer,  as lovely as it is, we still had more beans than I had ham hocks… so the next endeavour was the freezing of some french cut beans.  I am the only one that really loves green beans this way, so I make little frozen packages for myself to have when Don is away in winter.

The key here is the firmness of the beans,  if you try to french cut beans when they are limp, it becomes a bit difficult.  I had a bucket of beans and don’t believe in making a HUGE production out of the processing. When you save up so much product to put up, you tend to get a bit overwhelmed.   One bucket of beans is easy to do and very quick.

For Christmas I asked for a countertop ice machine (yes I ignored the “why do we need that” questions).  I love the thing.  For the bean project, I plugged it in when I started and by the time I am done, I had replaced the ice cubes I used for the ice water needed for the rapid cooling of the blanched beans.  It makes 3 sizes of cubes, great for parties as there is already a lot of noise going on, so no one really notices the compressor sound.  I just unplug it in between uses.  AND its fits very conveniently on top of my mini wine fridge!

So I put my large 8 quart all clad stock pot on the stove, got it to boiling, Set the ice water in the sink, took the beans through the french cut gadget thing, blanched for 90 seconds, dumped them in the ice water, dried on a large bath towel, stuffed in ziplocs and in no time I had some bright packages of beans!

And there you have it. My grandma would be proud.


Posted by on August 21, 2011 in Food, Recipes


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Zucchini… not quinoa super food….but more prolific… absolutely!

After a few REALLY warm days here…which is REALLY sad… because here on the wet-coast… we have had a crap summer so any warm day, we are jumping around rejoicing….. anyways back to the result of the WARM day.  Everything in the garden grew…(how does your garden grow you ask?)  Yesterday afternoon I went and picked the zucchini and contemplated whether they were the ‘perfect’ size…. were they too small?  hmmm…. so I picked 3 of them and added them to the 1 1/2 that I already had in the kitchen… well today, there were 6 more.  Yes 6!  Yesterday they were teeny, today they are regular sized…   so that means that today they grew 4 inches.  Nature never ceases to amaze me.  So I took up the challenge to post out some non-bread zucchini recipes. 

Did I mention that along with the zukes, there were beans, carrots, cucumbers, potatoes and peppers.  OK, so right now we need to turn into vegetarians so that we can get through all this bounty.  This is what I did:

Onions, garlic and biased carrots in the fry pan with some olive oil and salt.

Next was the zucchini and then the green beans….

Meanwhile I put two chicken legs into the pressure cooker… YES… the pressure cooker.. which is another post altogether.  It’s an electric pressure cooker and was highly recommended from the Chef at the Culinary Institute of America.  Like a good little student, I went and got myself one… I will post about it later cause I LOVE IT.

Anyways… I also cooked up some potatoes cause the shovel had gone thru a few of them and they needed to be cooked. Usually I would have just made the big pan of veg to go with the chicken, but to add just a smidge of mashed potatoes into the mix….. well lets just say … yum.  And fresh parsley too mixed in too!

So the end result is a stir fry of veg.  The zucchini breaks down a fair bit if you leave it and coats the rest of the veg.  I know, a healthier choice….would be firmer, brighter zucchini, but using it as the ‘sauce’ on the rest of the veg works great and is way less calories than a real sauce.

I hope you try it and enjoy it.

Leave a comment

Posted by on August 17, 2011 in Food, Recipes


Tags: , , , ,

Healthy Chocolate Brownies… I do not lie… is quinoa the new superfood?

With a husband with celiac disease, I am always on the lookout for Gluten free recipes that will appeal to him.  I find a lot of the GF recipes use a high amount of sugar to offset a possible lack of taste or texture.  This recipe was sent to me by my good friend and cousin-in-law, @melaniereuter who in turn received it from a friend of hers.  Finally I got to try them and they are fabulous!  I won’t take credit for putting it together though.  That honour goes to Charlyn who is my right-hand gal here at the house.  She showed up here this morning with them in hand for Don.  I tried a smidgen and OMG, they are really really great.  Here is an excerpt from  on the amazing benefits of this amazing grain.

….Quinoa is a considered a complete protein source. This means quinoa contains all eight essential amino acids, including lysine, which other whole grains are often missing. Quinoa is higher in iron and potassium than other whole grains and is a good source of B vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, magnesium, copper and fiber…

I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

Quinoa Brownies Gluten Free

2 cups well cooked quinoa
1/3 c. milk
4 lg. eggs
3/4 c. melted butter 
1 tsp. vanilla

Blend together in a blender until smooth.
Whisk dry ingredients together.

1/2 c to 3/4 c. sugar
1 c. cocoa
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

Add the contents of the blender and mix well.
Bake for 45 min. at 350F
This will freeze nicely for about a month.


Posted by on August 17, 2011 in Food, Recipes


Tags: , , , ,