Archive for July, 2013

Garlic Mustard Breaded Chicken Strips

Home Made Cooking

My kids can eat breaded chicken and chicken nuggets or fingers on any given day, all day, everyday. But me? After 2 weekends in a row I kind of get tired of frying chicken.

Not that I don’t like it, because I do, but sometimes it just seems too boring. Same flavor, same texture, same everything, I like to try different variations of the same food.

Luckily I had a can of Maille’s “Mustard and White Wine” so I figured, why not try using this? Of course, you can make this yummy dish with any type of mustard you have.

<>The combination of mustard and garlic and the fact that the chicken is marinated in this divine mix made these chicken bites so good! The chicken came out tender and juicy and the coating was crunchy and just fantastic.

Garlic Mustard Chicken Strips

Garlic Mustard Breaded Chicken Strips
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Homemade, Chicken, Kids
 
Scrumptious, tender and juicy - these are the three words I would use for this easy go-to recipe for chicken strips.
Ingredients
  • 6 Boneless and Skinless Chicken Thighs – Cut into strips
  • 3 tsp Mustard (I used Maille’s Mustard and White Wine)
  • 1 Garlic Clove – Minced
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 1 Egg
  • Bread Crumbs – For Coating
  • Oil
Instructions
  1. In a bowl ,whisk together the mustard, garlic, paprika and egg.
  2. Place the chicken strips in the batter and fold in until fully coated; Now let the whole mix stand for 30 minutes before frying.
  3. Preheat oil on a frying pan oven medium- high heat. Oil should be about ½ inch deep.
  4. Dip each chicken strip in bread crumbs until coated and place in the preheated oil.
  5. Fry on each side until nice and brown.

Garlic Mustard Breaded Chicken Strips

Disclaimer: I received 3 gift coupons from Maille Canada through their offer on the FBC webpage. I purchased the mustard in this recipe using these coupons and as part of their efforts to better familiarize their new products.

My kids can eat breaded chicken and chicken nuggets or fingers on any given day, all day, everyday. But me? After 2 weekends in a row I kind of get tired of frying chicken. Not that I don’t like it, because I do, but sometimes it just seems too boring. Same flavor, same texture, same […]

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Spelt Chocolate Beet Cake With Chocolate Ganache

Cakes and Cookies

This last Friday we ate out. I know I know, what’s the big deal right? Well, if you’ve been reading my blog you know how I love having family dinners on Friday evening. I always cook and bake and set a nice table. But this Friday we took a turn on our way home; and although it was only to take a picture of the magnificent view, we ended up in a nice Chinese restaurant.

So when we got back home, it was only 6:30 and the evening was still young, and since I just love spending time in the kitchen and had this cake idea cooking up in my thoughts for a few days now, I just had to act.

I had 1 beet in the fridge. It wasn’t enough for salad but apparently it was enough for cake!

I’m not so sure about the benefits of having beet in a cake but I’m pretty sure it gives the cake some moisture and an added nutritional value. I also made the cake from spelt flour so my husband can enjoy it too. Spelt flour requires less liquid because it’s fluffy and light as it is and as such it absorbs much less than all purpose flour, so adding the beet only made it better.

This cake is not too sweet, and so to add a bit more chocolate flavor I covered it with chocolate ganache.

The kids were excited to see the cake on the counter and when I told them it is made of beets Bar was really happy and excitingly told Shai that the cake is going to make their pee purple…well, it didn’t; but it was really good, and soft and moist and now its new status is ‘Gone’.

Spelt Chocolate Beet Cake with Chocolate Ganache


Spelt Chocolate Beet Cake With Chocolate Ganache
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert, Chocolate
Cuisine: Cakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Spelt flour, Beets and chocolate! What can go wrong? So moist, soft and sweet. Easy to make and easier to eat.
Ingredients
  • 1 Medium Beet – Cooked and peeled
  • 1 Tbsp Yogurt
  • 4 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 1 ½ Cups Spelt Flour
  • ½ Cup White Sugar
  • ¼ Cup Brown Sugar
  • ⅓ Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • ½ tsp Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp Baking Soda
  • 2 Eggs
  • ¼ Cup Milk
For the Chocolate Ganache (Yields 1 Cup Ganache)
  • 130gr Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • ½ Cup Heavy Cream
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375F (180C)
  2. Prepare loaf pan covered with parchment paper
  3. Place the beet, the yogurt and the oil in a food processor and grind until you get a nice smooth paste.
  4. Place the rest of the ingredients in a mixing bowl, add the beet mix in and mix well until fully combined.
  5. Pour the mix into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until you test with a toothpick and it comes out clean (with no wet mix on it).
For the Ganache:
  1. Starts preparing the ganache halfway through the baking process
  2. Place the chocolate chips and the heavy cream in a small saucepan and heat over medium-low temperature while stirring consistently
  3. Remove from heat and set aside when you get a smooth cream like chocolate mix
  4. Pour the ganache on the cake when it’s ready
  5. The longer you let the ganache cool the less liquid it will be (which can allow you to spread it on the cake as oppose to pouring it on it)
Notes
**For 1 English cake Pan/ Loaf Pan**

Spelt Chocolate Beet Cake

Spelt Chocolate Beet Cake with Chocolate Ganache

This last Friday we ate out. I know I know, what’s the big deal right? Well, if you’ve been reading my blog you know how I love having family dinners on Friday evening. I always cook and bake and set a nice table. But this Friday we took a turn on our way home; and […]

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Bite Size Spelt Flour Mini Buns

Baked Goodies

Seriously weather…this is not what I call summer! It’s the end of July and all we had for the past week is grey, damp and rainy. I’m supposed to be eating salads, fruits, veggies, cheese platters and light food and snacks but instead all I want to do is put my sweater on and have soup – seriously??

But enough about the weather, let’s talk about food. Last week I wanted to make something special for our Saturday brunch, but I woke up late (can I get a woot-woot) and had no inspiration whatsoever. So I decided to go with whatever I bump into in the fridge. Tomatoes, cucumbers, cheese, so I made 2 salads; but then I figured no one will eat just salads (except for me), we need bread, something fast!

So I put some ingredients together, played with the dough and voila! Got my own batch of mini bite sized spelt buns. They were a hit!  In fact, out of the 30 I made none were left.

They were so good, and we all kept on snacking on them. After we were done brunch, the kids decided they want dessert so they made their own dessert, with the same mini buns. They just added some Nutella to some and jam to others and enjoyed their own bite sized sweet buns.

So they can be served as savory but also as sweet. Did I already say I just love these? And with the added benefit of low gluten values they’ll be a hit on our next brunch as well.

 

Spelt Flour Bite Size Mini Buns

 

Bite Size Spelt Flour Mini Buns
Author: 
Recipe type: Bread
Cuisine: Low Gluten, Breads
Serves: 30-35 Mini Buns
 
They're small, they're easy to make and they're low in gluten. Oh and did I mention you can have them with both smoked salmon AND Nutella? yup!
Ingredients
  • 2 Cups Spelt Flour
  • 1 Tbsp Baking Powder
  • 3 Tbsp Butter
  • ¾ Cup Soft Goat Cheese (Can be replaced with cream cheese)
  • ¾ Cup Milk
  • 1 Tbsp Fresh Basil – Chopped (Optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375F (200C)
  2. Place all the ingredients in a mixer bowl and stir well until combined
  3. Sprinkle the dough with a little spelt flour to ease removal from bowl and avoid stickiness.
  4. Place on floured surface and using a rolling pin flatten the dough into a ½ inch thick leaf. Be careful, don’t flatten too thin.
  5. Using a round or square cookie cutter (you can also simply cut into squares using a pizza roller) cut shapes and place on a parchment paper layered baking sheet.
  6. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes

 

Spelt Flour Bite Size Mini Buns

Spelt Flour Bite Size Mini Buns

Seriously weather…this is not what I call summer! It’s the end of July and all we had for the past week is grey, damp and rainy. I’m supposed to be eating salads, fruits, veggies, cheese platters and light food and snacks but instead all I want to do is put my sweater on and have […]

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Fresh Mint Lime & Cookies with Lemon Drizzle

Cakes and Cookies

What’s your favorite ingredient in the summer? For me it’s definitely lemon, or lime, or just generally sour and refreshing.

Yesterday I decided that the limes in my fridge were there for too long and that I need to put them into proper use. So I did, I made cookies, and to make them even better I added my second favorite ingredient which is fresh mint leaves.

The mint is actually one of my favorites year round. It goes really well in salads and smoothies in the summer and also goes wonderfully in my tea on a cool autumn or winter night.

To make my cookies even better I decided to give it some more lemony flavor and drizzled with lemon glaze. The result? Well…2 baking sheets full of cookies, 2 happy kids and as of this morning, 1 ½ baking sheets gone missing….hmmm.

So give this a try, you’ll love it, it’s so easy and just refreshingly good!

Fresh Mint and Lime Cookies Drizzled With Lemon Glaze

Fresh Mint and Lime Cookies Drizzled With Lemon Glaze

Fresh Mint and Lime Cookies with Lemon Drizzle
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Cookies, Sweets
Serves: 54 Cookies
 
Entertaining this summer? Looking for a refreshing treat? You got it. These fresh mint and lime cookies are the best!
Ingredients
For the cookies:
  • 200gr Cold Butter – Cubed
  • 2 Cups (300gr) All Purpose Flour
  • ¾ Cup (185gr) White Granulated Sugar
  • Zest from 1 Fresh Lime (you can use lemon)
  • ⅛ Cup Fresh Lime (or lemon) Juice
  • ½ Cup Fresh Mint Leaves (About 7 Sprigs – Just the leaves)
  • 3 Tbsp Water
For the Lemon Glaze:
  • 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 2 Tbsp Milk
Instructions
Prepare the Cookies:
  1. Place the flour, sugar, ½ of the Butter (100gr), the lime zest and the lime juice in a large mixer bowl.
  2. Place the other ½ of the Butter (100gr) and the Fresh Mint Leaves in a food processor (or Chopper) and grind until combined (you will have butter with tiny green pieces in it)
  3. Add the mint butter to the mixer bowl and mix well
  4. The mixed dough will have coarse sand texture, so add 3 tbsp water one after the other
  5. You should now have well mixed dough the separates from the bowl sides
  6. Divide the dough into 2 balls and roll each until you get a 10 inch long roll
  7. Take the 2 rolls and place in the freezer for 20 minutes
  8. Preheat oven to 350F (175C) and prepare 1-2 baking sheets layered with parchment paper
  9. After 20 minutes remove rolls from freezer and quickly (you don’t want them to completely thaw, when they are frozen it is much easier to slice) slice them into round cookies about ½ inch thick each and place on parchment paper layered baking sheets.
  10. Make sure the cookies are placed at least 1½ inch apart
  11. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the cookies begin to get a golden brown color on the edges
  12. Remove from oven and let cool completely. Do not move the cookies until they are cool. When you remove them you will notice they are soft, that’s fine, they will become nice and crispy after they’re cooled.
Prepare the Lemon Glaze:
  1. Whisk (or stir well using a fork) all the ingredients together until smooth.
Glaze the Cookies:
  1. After the cookies are cool, pick up some glaze with a fork and drizzle on the cookies.

Fresh Mint and Lime Cookies Drizzled With Lemon Glaze

 

What’s your favorite ingredient in the summer? For me it’s definitely lemon, or lime, or just generally sour and refreshing. Yesterday I decided that the limes in my fridge were there for too long and that I need to put them into proper use. So I did, I made cookies, and to make them even […]

Read More

Sprite Popsicles – A “Spritesicle” Full of Surprises

Sweets

It’s summer, and living in a house made of wood with no A/C can sometimes be hot, very hot. So other than turning the fans on and opening the windows I’m always up for something cold to munch on.

 

This time I decided to surprise the kids and make them a “Surprise Popsicle”; why surprise? Well, other than the fact that they didn’t know I’m making these, the popsicles also had surprises in them.

Strawberries, Blueberries and gummies (made from natural fruit with no additives). The only thing I am still trying to figure out is what juice I can make that is totally clear and see-through so the kids can see the surprises in the Popsicle.

So in this instance, although I did use fruits and natural gummies, I had to go ahead and use Sprite as well. Not as healthy as I would like it to be but it’s only for this time and has no food coloring in it so it’s not as bad as any other soft drink.

This was so easy to make and the kids were super excited. They call it “Spritesicle” and now wouldn’t stop asking for it.

These “Spritesicles” are perfect on a hot summer day and use minimal ingredients. Just perfect!

 

Sprite Popsicle with fruits and gummies

 

Sprite Popsicles - A "Spritesicle" Full of Surprises
Author: 
Recipe type: Popsicles
Cuisine: Dessert, Refreshment
Serves: 4 Popsicles
 
A Popsicle that's full of surprises. You'll be the kids' hero of the day.
Ingredients
  • ¾ Cup Sprite or any other pop/soft drink you like
  • 4 Strawberries – cut in 4
  • 12 Blueberries
  • 8 Gummies
  • Optional – you can use any fruit you like
Instructions
  1. Place the berries and gummies in each Popsicle mold
  2. Add in the Sprite/ Juice
  3. Freeze for 6-8 hours

 

Sprite Popsicle with fruits and gummies

It’s summer, and living in a house made of wood with no A/C can sometimes be hot, very hot. So other than turning the fans on and opening the windows I’m always up for something cold to munch on.   This time I decided to surprise the kids and make them a “Surprise Popsicle”; why […]

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Vegetable Coconut Curry – Rainbow in My Plate

Home Made Cooking

After returning from our summer trip to Montreal, Ottawa and Quebec City I kind of missed our Friday dinners. Yes, we only missed two but still from some reason it felt like the weeks are just getting too long. Maybe it’s the fact that I had nothing to be my “closure” for the week; that family dinner where I know that after I’m done cooking I can finally rest and enjoy the leftovers the day after without having to cook all over again.

I love family dinners and the more the merrier, the more dinners and the more family.

Unfortunately we don’t have any family around here on a regular basis; they’ll visit once a year, sometimes twice but that’s it, so basically our really quiet and intimate family time is these dinners.

Another reason for having our Friday dinners is a Jewish tradition, a beautiful one actually. You see, Saturday is a holy day in the Jewish religion, a day of rest, of peace, of contemplation. And therefore Friday evening symbolizes the transition into our quiet time – Saturday.

Now, I’m not religious or anything, but there is magic in these meals, this family time, because we all gather around the table, without worrying about homework, camps, work, nothing, we’re just there with and for each other, enjoying each other’s company, usually surrounded by good food 🙂

So every Friday I cook, and cook and bake, because I want it to be perfect.

Every Friday there’s a vegetarian dish (at least one) and some form of chicken. Last Friday the vegetarian dish was Vegetables in Coconut Curry.

I literally emptied my vegetable drawer into the pot, so many veggies, so many colors and flavors. The end result was just a little bit spicy and so rich in flavor.

Served over mashed potatoes or white rice it looked like a top notch dish.

Vegetable Coconut Curry


Vegetable Coconut Curry - Rainbow in My Plate
Author: 
Recipe type: Vegetarian
Cuisine: Thai, Curry
Serves: 6 Persons
 
Thai curry at its best when made of vegetables alone. the colors, the aroma and the flavor are mouthwatering. Easy to make too 🙂
Ingredients
  • 1 Sweet Potato – Cut into ½" cubes
  • 1 Carrot – Cut into medium cubes
  • 2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Zucchinis – Sliced into circles
  • 1 Tomato – cut into cubes
  • 1 Bell Pepper – Cut into cubes or strips
  • ½ Onion – Chopped
  • 50gr Spinach Greens
  • 200gr Cooked/ Frozen Broccoli (12 Florets) – Divided into small florets
  • ½ tsp Curry Powder
  • ½ tsp Ground Ginger
  • 3 tsp Tomato Paste
  • 1 tsp Table Salt
  • ¼ tsp Ground Cayenne Pepper (Optional)
  • 1½ Cup Coconut Milk
  • ¾ Cup Warm Water
Instructions
  1. Boil the sweet potato and carrot in water over high heat, for about 15 minutes (until tender but not too soft) and remove from heat once ready and set aside.
  2. In a wide pot preheat the oil over medium heat and add the zucchini, tomato, bell pepper and onion and stir. Sauté for 7 minutes while stirring occasionally.
  3. Add in the spinach and broccoli and stir until spinach is wilted.
  4. Add in the ginger and curry powder, tomato paste and salt and stir to mix in vegetables
  5. Add in the coconut milk and water, stir, bring to boil and then lower the heat from medium to low and cook for 15-20 minutes
  6. Serve on a bed of white rice or mashed potatoes

 

Vegetable Coconut Curry

Vegetable Coconut Curry

After returning from our summer trip to Montreal, Ottawa and Quebec City I kind of missed our Friday dinners. Yes, we only missed two but still from some reason it felt like the weeks are just getting too long. Maybe it’s the fact that I had nothing to be my “closure” for the week; that […]

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Red Lentil Rice – Putting An Egg On It

Home Made Cooking

You know how sometimes you think you know how much time will be enough for you to wind down? I thought I knew; so we booked our 10 day vacation. We drove to Montreal (16 hours!!) and from there to Ottawa and Quebec City. It was amazing, I loved it, I loved the cities, the views, the vibe, the fact that I didn’t have to clean the house, go to work, do the laundry and even cook (yeah…I’m a real person). But then it ended, and of course that now I feel it wasn’t enough. I wish I could take a whole month off but I guess this will have to do for now, since living with no pay check is not a good idea for the short or long term. Was nice though!

On a whole different note, have you noticed the latest trend of “Put An Egg On It”?

I’m not sure what this is all about but I like eggs so I’m fine with that. I have many people I follow on “Instagram” and I noticed that food from the Far East is many times served with an egg on or in it, perhaps that’s where this is all started?

In any case, when I saw that there is an Iraqi dish served with an egg on it I was thrilled, because I like the spices and it was so easy to make, truly effortless.

So here you have it, an Iraqi dish called “Kichri” which is basically rice with red lentils and lots of spices. It is served with an egg on it (obviously) and sour cream or yogurt on the side. You can say it’s a whole meal because, well – it is!

 

Lentil Rice with Sunny Side Up

 

Red Lentil Rice - Putting An Egg On It
Author: 
Recipe type: Main, Rice
Cuisine: Iraqi, Mediterranean
 
Putting an egg on it has become a trend, but in this instance putting an egg on it becomes a meal. Rice with lentils, egg and yogurt - A complete meal in one pot.
Ingredients
  • 1 Cup Red Lentils
  • 2 Cups White Jasmin/ Basmati Rice
  • 4 Cups Water – Hot Boiled
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Ground Cumin
  • ¾ tbsp Salt
  • 2½ tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 4 Garlic Cloves – Diced
Instructions
  1. In a strainer, thoroughly wash the lentils and rice under cold running water until the water draining from the lentils are clear.
  2. Pour the hot boiling water into a medium pot and add the tomato paste and all the spices and bring to boil.
  3. Once water boil in the pot, add the rice and lentils, stir well and lower to low heat.
  4. Let the rice and lentils cook (with no lid on) until the water are completely gone and absorbed into the rice and lentils. This should take about 40 minutes.
  5. In the meantime, preheat frying pan with 2 tbsp oil over medium heat and add the diced garlic cloves. Saute for about 2 minutes until the garlic is golden, be careful not to over fry it. Garlic is easily burnt.
  6. After the water in the pot is completely absorbed, add the fried garlic in and mix.
  7. Cover the pod with a lid and let it cook for another 15 minutes while covered, over low heat.
  8. Serve with a sunny side up on top and sour cream or yogurt on the side.

 

Lentil Rice with Sunny Side Up

Lentil Rice with Sunny Side Up

You know how sometimes you think you know how much time will be enough for you to wind down? I thought I knew; so we booked our 10 day vacation. We drove to Montreal (16 hours!!) and from there to Ottawa and Quebec City. It was amazing, I loved it, I loved the cities, the […]

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Seared Maple Basil Mini Scallops – A Nova Scotian Delight

Home Made Cooking | Salads

Summer is here! It’s 29 degrees Celsius outside as I type this and I am just thrilled!

Of course, witnessing the sun and warmth through a glass window while sitting in my office at work is not your prefect definition to “enjoying summer” but I’ll take it! (Since really, there is no other option). So yeah! It’s here and with it the desire to eat light.

 

When you think of eating light what comes to mind? For me it’s salads! And when I say salads I don’t mean the mayo based ones or just garden salads, I mean salads with an added bonus ingredient like pasta or fish or chicken perhaps.

 

So I was thinking of salads the other day and then I thought to myself “what can I add as an added bonus ingredient?” but wait, I live in Canada, Nova Scotia, Halifax, one of the best spots to get fresh sea food. Hey, why not enjoy the local goods and the fact that I can get fresh seafood right here, right now? So I did! I went and made myself (and the family – hunger didn’t make me forget about them yet) a green yummy salad with garlic mustard dressing and (drum roll) fresh seared mini sea scallops!

 

My son was thrilled, we all ate healthy and I was excited because guess what? This dish fits in perfectly with this month’s theme for the “Canadian Food Experience Project” which is “A Regional Canadian Food” and what’s classier for the Nova Scotia region than sea food.

 

As for the recipe itself, this one is super easy, very fast and will go perfectly as an added bonus ingredient on top of your green salad (garden or tossed). Enjoy!

 

Seared Maple Basil Mini Scallops

 

Seared Maple Basil Mini Scallops - A Nova Scotian Delight
Author: 
Recipe type: Entree, Appetizer
Cuisine: Seafood, Salads
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Living in Nova Scotia, you have to crazy if you don't try the fresh seafood this region has to offer. So I did, in a salad, so there - A healthy dish with an added bonus of NS. You can top up any salad with these yummies.
Ingredients
  • 300gr Fresh Mini Sea Scallops (Thawed Scallops can also be used)
  • 2 tbsp Maple Syrup
  • 1 tbsp Dry Basil
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • Salt and Black Pepper – Pinch of each
Instructions
  1. Rinse the mini scallops and pat them dry
  2. Place in a medium bowl and add all the other ingredients
  3. Stir well until mini scallops are fully coated and let it rest in the bowl for 10 minutes to absorb flavors
  4. Preheat pan or iron skillet over medium-high heat
  5. Using a spoon scoop the scallops and place on preheated pan along with maximum 1 tbsp of whatever excess marinade you have left (if any. If there is none that’s OK)
  6. Let scallops sear in the pan while occasionally stirring. Sear for about 8 minutes until scallops get a light golden color.
  7. Serve warm or at room temperature over your favorite green salad (garden, tossed etc.)

 

Seared Maple Basil Mini Scallops

 

The Canadian Food Experience project includes me and many other Canadian food bloggers (participants). It’s a project where we share our Canadian food stories and experience. We hope to bring global clarity to our Canadian culinary identity and hopefully raise recognition to Canadian food and food bloggers and make our Canadian voice shine.

Seared Maple Basil Mini Scallops

Summer is here! It’s 29 degrees Celsius outside as I type this and I am just thrilled! Of course, witnessing the sun and warmth through a glass window while sitting in my office at work is not your prefect definition to “enjoying summer” but I’ll take it! (Since really, there is no other option). So […]

Read More