Saturday, November 27, 2010
Well, now that both us Canadians and our neighbours to the south have had their first meal of the pig-out season known as Thanksgiving-through-New Years, there's a tiny bit of leeway in between feasts to give our bodies (and jeans) a bit of a break. What better than to balance out the turkey, potatoes, stuffing and gravy than with a good hearty bowl... of greens?
Monday, November 22, 2010
First off, I want to say a HUGE thank you to the six participants in my fist ever giveaway - it was more than I thought ever read my blog in the first place at all, and your feedback was definitely good reading (and made me hungry!). Unfortunately, as much as I would love to give each of you a prize, I only have one gift basket from Gay Lea to give out. Thanks to the random number generator, we have a winner...
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Times have sure changed - for one thing, now when I hit the cereal aisle it's more like shopping in a candy store! But if you search on the lowest shelves, or hop into the nearest bulk store, you can still find the old, plain classics. So I decided to fix my current craving for the apple-cinnamon rings by baking them. Rather than making cookies or marshmallow bars with the plain Cheerios I picked up, I did what I do best: bread!
1 egg, beaten
1/3 cup warm, unsweetened applesauce
3 tbsp honey
2 tbsp melted butter
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat bread flour
1/4 cup potato flour
1/3 cup ground flaxseed
1/3 cup whole flaxseed
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tbsp instant yeast
1 medium tart apple, peeled and diced
1/2 cup Cheerios cereal
- In a medium bowl, beat together cider, egg, applesauce, honey, butter and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl or basin of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, whisk together flours, flaxseed, cinnamon and yeast.
- Add the liquid ingredients and mix well.
- Knead for 12 minutes, until dough begins to form elastic "strands".
- Cover and let rest 10 minutes.
- Knead a further 7-8 minutes on medium speed, then re-cover and let rest 15 minutes.
- Scrape onto a floured counter and knead in apple pieces and Cheerios cereal. It will take a while, but it will all fit!
- Shape into a round, cover and let rest 30 minutes.
- Lightly deflate dough and shape into a loaf, place into a greased loaf pan. Cover and let rise 1 1/2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Place bread on the lowest rack of the oven and bake 50 minutes, rotating pan halfway through.
Total Fat: 4.9 g
Cholesterol: 19.5 mg
Sodium: 28.6 mg
Total Carbs: 29.4 g
Dietary Fiber: 4.5 g
Protein: 5.2 g
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Usually the shortbreads we make around this time of year are just that - plain, vanilla, no-fuss butter and icing sugar concoctions. No chocolate, nuts or fruit to mess with the velvety texture. Then the folks at Gay Lea - a great butter producer in Ontario - sent me a few rather unusual recipes for the treat: a savoury Chipotle & White Cheddar Shortbread Cracker, and some ooey-gooey-delicious Banana Coconut Cream Shortbread Stacks. While I dont think I can ever convince mom to use these in place of her coveted prize-winners, I can't wait to give them a whirl myself!
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Monday, November 8, 2010
It's a toss up for me as to how I feel about the holiday food scene. I mean, though I despise pumpkin pie and think mincemeat is something best buried deep underground, I make several versions of both, and given their reception by both family and the foodie community I would say they're recipes worth keeping around for a while. Even though my grandma's famous mashed potatoes with their lashings of cream cheese and butter are off the menu for me now, I still adore mashers with the simple additions of salt, pepper and garlic. Oddly enough, I reserve my cranberry sauce use for mixing into those potatoes when they're day-old, and when I was a meat-eater it paired with cold turkey, Miracle Whip and whole-grain toast. It's not overly gourmet, but I love the way the cranberries pair with the other, drier ingredients, and my lower-sugar, stevia-sweetened sauce that I made last year is still one of my favourites.
So I chopped up those tart little morsels and chucked them into a decadent quickbread batter, topping the raw mix with some of the whole almonds just to be pretty. Because who doesn't want some pretty, glittering gems in their day?
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp almond extract
1/3 cup slivered almonds
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries, roughly chopped
- Preheat oven to 350F, grease a loaf pan.
- In a bowl, whisk flours, sugar, poppy seeds, nutmeg and baking powder. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat milk, butter, almond butter, egg, vanilla and almond extract.
- Add flour mixture and stir just to combine.
- Fold in almonds and cranberries.
Total Carbs: 38.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 3.2 g
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Are you one of those people in the die-hard "chocolate or bust" camp? Or are you more attracted to the rich, smooth velvetyness of the custards, the flans... the cheesecakes! I can never decide for myself. I mean, I adore chocolate - what girl doesn't after all? - but like my dad, I have a penchant for rich, creamy rice pudding. I picked up a love for Boston Cream Pie from grandpa. And cheesecake? Well, that's all mom's doing, for sure.
But finding good combinations for the two is tricky. The texture thing, for one - brownies are fudgy to cakey, easily eaten out-of-hand, slightly gooey and just brownie-ish. Rice pudding is thick but spoonable, requiring a bowl. Boston Cream Pie and cheesecake (for the most part) require forks. Then there's the whole taste factor: both the creaminess of the non-chocolate desserts and the fudgy qualities of the brownies are rich, and easily overpower a dessert. I've tried recipe after recipe over the years that combined the two - brownie batter-swirled rice pudding, brownie crusted cheesecake, and yes, even the common cheesecake swirled brownie, but there was always some sort of sway one way or another that meant one side won out over the other.