Sunday, May 30, 2010

Pamcakes.




Can you hear that? I know. It's so quiet. I am missing the pitter patter of little ones feet running throughout the house. I miss the laughing the squealing, the 100 questions. I miss it all. I will see them all soon - and hopefully their parents will allow them to move with me for 1 month visits at a time. What???? Too long do you think? 

We had a great visit - and Jules had a good weekend. 

I made pancakes on Sunday morning. Chris is typically the pancake maker - but since he had to work, I called Jules for her recipe - and whipped up a batch. These pictures are not the ones that I made - these were made in the summer at the cottage - and I have been waiting for a time to share them. 

I love pancakes - and have to admit that when they are made from scratch they are much better. Not that I have anything against packages of pancake mix - I just like these a bit better. My niece calls them 'Pamcakes' which to me - is just about the cutest thing.

Sunday Morning Pancakes
 
1 1/4 cup flour
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1 egg 
1 1/2 cup milk
2 tbsp melted butter

In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl whisk the egg and then add the milk and mix together. In a small saucepan, melt the butter. When the butter is melted, slowly add the butter to the egg and milk. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, combine all the ingredients together.


If you would like to add fruit - blackberries and/or blueberries are divine - I would add 2 cups and gently stir, to try to avoid breaking the berries up. 

Using a non-stick skillet over medium heat, using a soup ladle place a couple of small dollops of pancake mixture on the skillet. When the the uncooked side starts to have open holes (I'm not sure how else to explain it) - it's time to flip them over. 

And there you are - left with delicious pancakes. This recipe makes about 15 small-medium sized pancakes. 

That's it for me tonight. I needs to get me some good sleeps.

Loves. 

Enjoy!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Surprise!



What a good weekend for a surprise.

My brother, sister and I have been planning a little surprise birthday weekend for my mom for the last little while. My brother, sister-in-law and their wee'ins came into town yesterday - and early this morning I called my mom over to come and get me for my nephew's ball game. In she walked to my wee niece sitting in the door way - it was a great surprise. Then this evening we had some of my mom's friends over for dinner - it was a good night.

I made my 'favourites' for dinner. I know that I have made these dishes a million (ok, I exaggerate) of times before, but no everyone has had them (the majority haven't) so I was safe to serve them. They are easy - make ahead dishes - and the meat can be done on the grill - which makes life even easier - except when Chris doesn't start the bbq when he is supposed to - and when the steak still has a heart beat.

On the menu: (click on the link for the recipe)


Mixed green salad - I only added dried cranberries and walnuts with goat cheese (deelish) 
Grilled steak
Tziaki and pita

Cake

Ok. The Cake. It was on a level of it's own. This cake was a work of art. It was made by Rosalyn, a woman that I work with, and she is amazing. Not only is the cake incredibly beautiful, a piece of art, but it is also so delicious. She made a carrot cake. It was sweetened with pineapple juice. It was so moist and so mouthwatering-I-could-eat-all-of-it, but I didn't b/c that is not ladylike.

Rosalyn also made Tracy's cupcakes and cake for her wedding. 

And also made our cupcakes for our kids Kung Fu party last year. 


She is extremely talented. If you are wanting a personalized cake - let me know - I can hook you up - and I know that Ros would love it too.

So, it is getting late. I wanted to send out a quick note. I am having a wonderful weekend. I love the house full. I love hearing the pitter patter of little feet and all the hugs and kisses and cuddles. I just can't get enough - and wish that they all lived next door. Summerland is too far away sometimes. Shouldn't it be law that all families just live together forever. Yes - they could go off and travel the world for a week or two at a time - but then in the end we all have to live in the same town, street, house, living room. Would that be so bad? For right now - I know that my Magnum and Jozie are not allowed to date or move away or even travel the world - they will have to stay with me forever - I might get those pouches. Too far. My maternal 'cravings' are in full swing. Poor nieces and nephews right now - I can't stop squeezing them.

Alright friends. I have so many more stories, tales, recipes, adventures to tell you. Don't hold  your breath. :)

Loves.

Enjoy!!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Where did you come from Wednesday?



I'm not sure what has happened since Sunday - but I kind of feel as though I blinked and it's Wednesday. I can't believe that it is Hump Day already and the weekend is right around the corner. I plan on doing a whole lot of nothing this weekend. Just sitting by the pool and have my pool boy bring me white wine spritzers. Just kidding. I don't even like white wine spritzers. Oh just kidding again. I don't have a pool - but will probably have Chris be the pool boy. I actually do plan on planting my pots and veggie garden this weekend. I just haven't had a chance to do it yet - and I am behind - but really - the weather has been so cruddy - that the plants will be better off just going in now. 


The other night I made a nice batch of pasta. We haven't had pasta in quite some time - and I saw some fresh lemon pepper pasta at the Root Cellar so picked it up - and made some good old fashioned comfort food. I got some great veggies at the market on Sunday. They had a ton of local, organic produce - local island tomatoes, organic baby spinach, BC peppers. So delicious and beautiful. 

The pasta that I made was very easy - just sauteed a shallot with garlic. Then added yellow peppers with sliced italian sausage that were grilled on the bbq the night before. Then added a bit of white wine and chicken stock. In went halved cherry tomatoes, with the baby spinach and a bit of goat cheese to finish it off. Yumma.

Michael Smith's 'The Best of Chef at Home' came in the mail today from Amazon.ca. I really like his cooking show on the Food Network - so I am so excited to have his cook book. I will let you know some of my fave recipes after I give them a try.

I am thinking of starting another blog or website and calling it - Icannotstopeating.com. OMG. I have a problem. At home, I am fine. I eat breakfast, a small lunch and dinner. Nothing in between, I am not hungry. I get to work - and it is the complete opposite. I can't deal with it. I bring oatmeal and have a bowl of that with some fresh berries. Then around 10AM I feel that I am starving - and I know that I'm not. Today I went to Save On and got a bit of bulk almonds and a bag of Nibs to have after lunch so that I could have a few to satisfy my sweet craving. Yep - good plan - but I pretty much ate it all. I guess the answer is... that I should just not go to work :) 

Alright friends. I am going to work on my 'project'. I have finally, after many, many years - printed pictures for a bunch of black frames that I have had. I am going to put them all on a wall in our Suite B - and I can't wait to have them all up. I will post a pic of it all done.

I hope that Hump Day is marv.

Loves.

Enjoy!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Saladeelicious


I have been making this salad lately, quite a bit, and we are loving it. Chris rates it a 5+. We made this tonight with bbq'd steaks, and it was a very satisfying and delicious dinner. I really loved the organic mixed greens for this salad - it's my favourite.

This delicious salad is filled with:

Mixed greens
Cherry tomatoes - halved
Red and yellow peppers - chopped into small pieces
Walnuts
Dried cranberries
Feta

Now for the kicker - this dressing is what makes it!!

3 tbsp of good olive oil
2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar - try to find this ONE it's delicious

And that's it! Pour it in a mason jar, give it a good shake, and cover the salad. You may not want to use it all - if not - you can keep it in the fridge and use it again. I made a salad for Chris' lunch - so used the leftover for him.

I have to tell you about the Apple Cider Vinegar that I used. I LOVE this stuff. I am not sure if it can be found locally - but I know that you can get it in Summerland or in other areas of the Okanagan - it's the Okanagan Vinegar Brewery. You can also get some other great vinegars - I love the Raspberry one that you can get online HERE. You only need a small amount and it makes an incredible difference to your dressings. I feel that it enhances the flavours of the sweet and crisp vegetables that you are adding to your salad. 

I set out what I had planned to do today. I turned over the clothes - and pulled out 8 bags of clothes and other stuff from our room. 8 BAGS!!! I kid you not! I got rid of a lot of clothes, books, shoes and bags. I got rid of a lot of clothes that I have held on to for years. And decided that b/c they are too big that I need to get rid of them and not keep them 'just in case' I need them again. 

Wishing everyone a happy Victoria Day tomorrow. Let's hope the rain holds up for all the parade go'ers. 

Loves.

Enjoy!

What a perfect day!


Hello Sunday. Sweet, sweet Sunday. 

What a fantastic weekend it has been. Tracy and Jonathon's wedding was beautiful. Everything was just perfect. Mother nature behaved that day - it was a gorgeous day - the sun was shining - there was a tiny breeze and no rain. The setting was so lovely - trees were the backdrop for the ceremony. 
Tracy looked so beautiful. Her dress was so elegant. She looked stunning. She looked so happy. 


Cupcakes and cake by Rosalyn - so beautiful

The whole day really was perfect. I managed to do 'ok' with my speech. No major catastrophe's, thankfully.  I can't believe that the day came so fast - I know that our wedding day is 5 months away - but that it will come very quickly. 5 months!!!


For today - I have a mountain of clothes that I have to do something with. I need to put my winter clothes away - and break out the summer stuff - and then I need to try and clean our room. But first, I am going to take a quick trip to the RootCellar - for some veg. 

I am going to make a simple salad tonight for dinner - with a delicious dressing - I will post later tonight.

Enjoy the day!

Loves.

Enjoy!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Tracy and JR - their day is here!!!

Going to the chapel...

Today is Tracy and JR's wedding. TODAY!!! I can't believe how fast this has come.

I can't wait to see her in her dress - she is going to look beautiful.

I am nervous. I was hoping that I might lose my voice today and not be able to talk and therefore forfeit my MC speech responsibility. No luck. The vocals are loud and proud. I know it's all going to be ok - and that I won't break out in a hardcore sweat and throw fits of laughter and hysteria. I won't. I won't. I won't.

I think that it is all going to be fine. I have my speech. I have a few 'funny' things in it, and I just hope that people laugh. If they don't laugh - I will probably just stare at all of them in disbelief. 

Have a great weekend - tgif!!!!

I will post some pics - and tell you all about it this weekend.

Loves, 

Enjoy!!!

C.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Just DO It!

Today, I pledge to take care of myself. This is my whole-hearted dedication. Health, lifestyle, love, family and me will be most important in my life. And I know that if I am healthy, then everything else in my life will just comfortably fall in place. 

I need to get my butt back into running. When I was running regularly, I was so excited to keep it up when I was done. I was going to do a schedule and stick to it. Then I decided to take a little break after the 10K - and haven't got back into it. I just have to get out there and do it. Just do it. Really, that is the best slogan ever. Just Do It! I can say it like - 'just do it' - no exaggeration on any of the words - and it's like do it, don't stress, just get 'er done. And then, I can say it like 'Just DO it!!!' - like what are you waiting for - get it done!!! - stop making excuses and just make it happen. Wow - who knew?

So, I know that I have talked about this before - but it's something that I have focus on - take charge - and enjoy all of it. 

A healthy life needs healthy eating. So, I will try and post the most healthy and delicious recipes - like I always try and do - and if I post treats from time to time - well just remember that everyone needs treats from time to time.

I'm not sure if you can tell - but the colour of this grapefruit is stunning.

I got this little gadget from my mom for Christmas. I heart it. It is fantastic - and gets so much juice out of lemons and limes - and grapefruit! I am not sure where she found it - but you should find one. Jules - can you share with the group? 

I am marinading some chicken for Chris to grill tomorrow - and then I think that we will have fajitas for dinner tomorrow night - done on the new panini grill. Hello new panini grill - please tell me how to clean you the most easiest way possible.


For the marinade:
Juice of one lime or Juice of one lemon - I wanted to use lime - but they weren't so juicy so had to juice the lemon
Juice of half a grapefruit
Chili flakes 
Cayenne pepper
Garlic powder
Cumin
Kosher salt
(sorry I didn't measure any of the spices - I just did dashes of each)
I placed all of the ingredients in a ziploc bag with boneless, skinless chicken breasts and am letting it marinade all night long. They should be moist and flavourful for tomorrow night. I will tell you how it turns out.

Our invitations have been picked out invitations. Thanks to my mom (I love you Jules) they are all set and ready to go. Thankfully we have a lot time to actually do them - but for some reason - having the invitations is so exciting for me - and it's making it all so real - it's happening - we're planning a wedding!! I love paper products, cards, invitations, menus, ribbons, special pens - you name it, I love it. I always have. I think that is why I am so excited. I can't wait to see everything come all together.

Alright friends - time to sit and chill with my fiance.

I hope that your Tuesday was kind to you.

Loves.

Enjoy!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Oh Monday, you've come far too fast.

My neighbour gave us a panini grill that she didn't use. I have thought about getting one - but then just thought that it would take up space and never be used. So when it was given to me - how could I resist. 

Sometimes I want to say 'Pa-Ny-Ny' instead of 'Pa-Nee-Nee'. I know, crazy.

So, who wouldn't want a panini? See - I knew it - no complaints. Jozie tried to say something - but then she knew that I was talking about food, so she decided to keep it zipped.

For dinner tonight - I tested out the new grill and it worked quite well.


Chicken Pesto Panini

Sourdough bread
Cooked chicken breast - thinly sliced
Yellow peppers - thinly sliced
Tomato slices - thinly sliced
Pesto - I used Epicure pesto mix - it's basically the dry mix, with olive oil and parmesan cheese - it's deelish
Cheese - I used thin slices of deli cheese - monterey jack
Fresh basil leaves

I built the sandwiches:
Pesto, peppers, tomatoes, chicken, basil and cheese

Then I placed the sandwich on the grill and grilled it away. I probably should have grilled it longer than I did - but I was too excited to taste it. It was very tasty. I am excited to make this again.


Well - that's it for me tonight. I am in PMS mode - let the floodgates open - lovely.

Loves.

Enjoy!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Sweet Saturday.

No paws were harmed in the taking of this picture.

Look how cute this little paw is. So cute. Just makes me want to bite it. He probably wouldn't mind really - he would think that it was a game and bite me back. I was just sitting here ready to post and noticed his paws have this sweet, earthy smell. I like to put them up to my nose and take in a good breath - I know that might sound weird and all - but it's such a healthy smell - and reminds me that these little paws have had a very good day with lots of outside adventure. The other thing is - is that normally this little fella does not always smell so good. He often exerts a funk - so when there is a good smell - I am going to embrace it.

I am not sure if you have noticed - but on the right hand side of the page - I have posted a new link to IFBC (International Food Blogger Conference). I am VERY excited about this. I have been given an opportunity to go to this - and I can't even believe how fortunate I am. Apparently it is a fantastic weekend, it's not only incredibly informative, but there are treats all weekend and the food is delicious. Whoa!!! I will have to try and contain myself until that weekend. 

Last night we had Tracy and Jonathan and Emma over for dinner. Tracy and JR (I like to call Jonathan that - mostly b/c I forget how to spell his name) are getting married this coming Friday! Only 6 more sleeps. I can't believe how fast this has come. It seems like just a short while ago when she came to work and showed me her ring. It was quite the scene. This Friday is also going to be the first time that I will be speaking in front of more than 30 people like I did when I was back in school doing oral reports. When I say 'school', I don't mean university. I mean Mrs. Hegamon's grade 5 class, doing a report on Holland. My bf, Shannon, asked me what language they spoke and I didn't know the answer so answered with 'Hollandish'. Good one C. Talk about nerves. Chantelle P was also very nervous that day, as she was doing her report on Morocco - she said that it was the same size and had the same population as the US - all while her leg was shaking out of control and she kept having to hit it as if to try get it to try and stop. Poor thing.

Ok, as usual, I digress. Prior to last night, I was a bit nervous, I'm not going to lie. I think that after last night and putting everything in order, I think that it will all be ok. I will do what I can, try and crack a joke or two and not sweat and speak to quickly. Wish me luck. 


For dinner we did something easy - thank goodness for BBQ season. We did homemade guacamole and salsa with corn chips and mini turkey burgers for an appetizer - Safeway is now selling mini burger buns - how fun - they are only white bread and hopefully they will do them in whole wheat - oh they are calling them 'sliders' - which I don't - don't judge me, I just don't. For the main course - bbq chicken and steak, rosemary potatoes and a greek salad. Yumma. 

Well - that's it for me for me on this wonderful Saturday evening. Chris had just went out with his buddy for dins - I am home solo - and I think that I am going to eat Smartfood popcorn for dinner - is that wrong?

I hope that you are all loving the weekend.

Loves.

Enjoy!

PS - tomorrow is the last day - Starbucks is having a happy hour between 4 and 6 I think - that you can get a buy one get one free Frappucino - apparently it's been on for the last week and a bit. I did not know! 

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Dress rehearsal.


Don't worry - this is not my dress - I am keeping it a secret. But this was one of my top 3, and I loved it.

I haven't spoke too much about my engagement or wedding plans. I'm not sure why, really. I guess I feel that I should keep some things a surprise for the big day - and I guess not everyone wants to hear wedding plans - this is supposed to be a food blog - after all. However, today, I will talk about it, but only a little bit. 

This past weekend was a very successful weekend. I went out in the morning hoping to find a wedding dress. I wasn't really sure what to expect. I wondered if there would be dresses to fit me; I was nervous about having to let people see me in the dresses as I am much more comfortable going in a dressing room - trying something on and then jetting; and I was worried about getting in and out of a dress without having a full on anxiety attack if I got stuck. Thankfully, the day went really well. Actually it was just perfect.

My cousin, Margo, aka Bridesmaid, came down for the day. She made the trek having to leave her home so early. And thankfully she did b/c she has great taste - and she knew what I was and wasn't liking. My sister, Debs, aka Made of Honour, was there too. She helped me in and out of most of the dresses. She saw it all - undies and nothing on top - I guess you lose a little bit of your dignity when trying on dresses. My mom, Jules, aka Mother of bride, was also there. She watched and enjoyed all of it. 

I only ended up having one bit of a panic/anxiety freak out. We were at Shades of White, and I couldn't get out of a dress fast enough - and the spotlights that they had in the change rooms were similar to heat lamps - you can imagine. Cuzzie helped me out of that one. 

Almost all of the dresses fit - almost. And not perfectly - but that was ok - they tied you into those dresses as if you couldn't get out if your life depended on it - so you had a general idea of what the dress would look like. 

After trying on around 10 dresses, I found my dream dress. And I love it. We found it at Blush - it was the first dress that I saw when we went in, the first one that I tried on, and the first one that I fell absolutely in love with. We went to Blush last - so I guess we saved the best for last. I absolutely loved the shop - it was so beautiful, and I think just really captured what a wedding dress shop should be. The girls were so helpful - Aimee - especially. I am so excited to have found the dress - and I can't wait for the day that I can wear it. 

Not only did I find my dress, I also found the Bridesmaids dresses. Debs and Margo both tried it on - and they looked beautiful in it. I know that my other, Bridesmaid, Nancy, is also going to look lovely in it. Bridesmaids are NOT wearing one of these. 


We also found Jules' dress. Her dress is amazing. She is going to look stunning. I tried to trick my mom a couple of months back by telling her I wanted her to wear a tuxedo - but that I would 'feminize' it up a bit. She seemed mortified. I thought it was hillare. 

I hope that all of this hasn't bored you some. I promise to limit the wedding chatter.

On Saturday morning - I whipped up a bunch of blueberry scones. I have made them before - click HERE to see the recipe. I really wanted to have some lemon flavour in them and didn't have any. But, what I did have, was Liberte lemon yogurt. So, instead of the milk, I added a cup of this lemon yogurt. The yogurt made the scones so moist and the subtle hint of lemon, was divine. I will definitely make these again.

Thanks for listening - I hope that your Hump Day was magnificent. The weekend is oh so near - hang tight.

Loves, 

Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Middy.


What do you say? Should we? I think so. 

This is a card that my cousin sent me. I love it. And I love that she sent. She knows me well.

Sometimes I do use the middle finger. I like to do it when I am driving and someone has cut me off or made me mad, so I finger the other driver, but under the dash so that they don't actually see me. It just makes me feel better.

My friend growing up, Colleen, used to practice holding her middle finger so that her pointer finder and ring finger were perfectly squared - she would practice this all the time. It used to totally crack me up.  Anyways, we are more mature now. Well some of us are... Colleen probably is. I will have to ask her if she still practices this.

I made this for dinner on Mothers Day. It was a good side dish - although Chris didn't love it. I guess he rated it a 3. Booums. I will make it again, and again, until he gives it a 5. Just watch me. I am giving him the middle finger as I type. Just kidding!


Creamed Swiss Chard

1 bunch of swiss chard - I used rainbow - it is so beautiful
2 cups of cream - I would try using the heaviest you can - I used half and half and I think that it could have been thicker
3 cloves of garlic - peeled - left whole
5 sprigs of thyme
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
1/2 cup of fresh grated parmesan

Chop the swiss chard into bite sized pieces. Blanch the swiss chard. Drain and set aside.
In another sauce pan, add the cream and all of the herbs and garlic. Let the cream simmer until it thickens. Remove the herbs and garlic from the cream, and then add the swiss chard to the cream. Add parmesan cheese, and it's all ready to serve. 

I served it on top of steak and it was a great combination.

Well friends, that's it for me tonight. I have to race out and pick up Connor from baseball. 

Breathe in that beautiful sunshine. Let it hit  your face and soak it all in.

Loves.

Enjoy!!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother.

happy mothers day. 

Wishing all of the lovely moms a very happy Mothers Day. I hope that you all were spoiled and loved by your loved ones.

Jules and I hit the road early this morning - heading out to the Rootcellar and to the Way for a little more groceries. It was a beautiful day here today - so sunny, a reminder that summer is just around the corner. 

I have so grateful for my mom. She is so generous, kind, fun, loving, supportive and thoughtful. She is there when I need her. She is an incredible grandma, sister and aunt. And she is so good to my Chris - who also loves her oh so much. Thank you so much mom - thanks for everything you do, and all that you are. And although you make me crazy sometimes - it's entertaining - and I love you through it all.

To celebrate Mothers Day this year - I didn't focus on not being a mom - I remember this time last year when I was in a real funk. I have wanted to be a mom for so long and it just hasn't happened. This year, Mothers Day has come and gone - and I think that there has been so much going on lately that I forgot to remember that I shouldn't stress out about this, and should just let nature take it's course. 

I have some exciting news about this weekend - but will post that tomorrow and focus on Mothers Day and the feast that we had.

On the menu, we had:

Goat cheese topped with peach chipotle jelly

Mini turkey burgers (NO picture!!! What's up with that??)

Roasted tomatoes on the vine

Roasted rosemary potatoes (What??? No pictures either. What is wrong with me??)

Grilled steak with creamed swiss chard

Cheesecake with blueberry bruschetta

For tonight I will post the good stuff. Dessert!!! Who doesn't love dessert? No seriously, who doesn't? If I find you - prepare yourself for a very long question and answer period.

I was sent this cheesecake recipe about a month ago - and was going to give it a try and just didn't have the occasion to make it. The other day I was thinking of my love affair that I have with blueberries - I have baked with them a couple of times lately - and I just love them. I knew that I was going to make the cheesecake and wanted a topping - so naturally, blueberries came to mind. I was trying to be a bit creative, and I thought that I would like to try making something like bruschetta. 

I like cheesecake. It's not my most favourite dessert, but I like it. I really, really, REALLY liked this recipe. It was so light, so creamy and so uber deelish. If you are a fan of cheesecake - I would recommend this one.

Cheesecake

Crust: 
2 cups graham wafer crumbs (or you can use oatmeal cookies, gingersnaps or vanilla wafers)
1/4 cup of sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter

In a large bowl, mix together the graham wafers and the sugar. In a saucepan melt the butter. Add the butter to the dry ingredients and combine together. Place the crumbs in a large springform pan - press the crumbs evenly on the bottom and then up the sides about 1/4 inch from the top of the pan. Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate while making the filling.

Pre-heat oven to 350.

Filling:
4 8 ounce packages of light cream cheese
1 cup of sugar
3 tbsp of flour
5 large eggs - room temperature
1/3 cup of whipping cream
Zest of a half of lemon

In a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese, sugar and flour - cream for about 2 minutes. Add each egg one at a time and mixing after each egg is added. Once the eggs are added, add the whipping cream and lemon zest. Mix until completely creamy. Place the filling into the springform pan and bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 250 and bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes. 

Topping:
1 cup of sour cream (avoid low fat or fat free)
2 tbsp of sugar

Combine ingredients and set in fridge while cake is baking.

Once cake is done baking remove from oven and place on a cooling rack. Gently top the cake with the topping, and bake for another 15 minutes. 

Let cool and prepare yourself with pure decadence.

Blueberry Bruschetta

I am really excited about this and will definitely make it again. This was my last bag of blueberries from last summer's addiction to them where I was freezing enough of them to keep me supplied for the year. 

2 cups of blueberries - fresh or frozen. If you are using frozen - place them in a coffee filter in a colander and let them thaw.
4 strawberries - chopped into very small pieces 
1 tbsp of maple syrup
6 basil leaves - chiffonade
Zest of half a lemon
1 tbsp of creamy balsamic vinegar

In a bowl, mix together all of the ingredients - refrigerate - and let sit at room temperature for a little while before serving. 

The flavour of the balsamic vinegar, with lemon zest and basil was so refreshing. 

Well, as we turn in for the night - I hope that you all had a wonderful day. That you had a lovely weekend - and ready to start out a week good and strong.

Loves.

Enjoy! 

Friday, May 7, 2010

One brow, one life.

Ok, I am going to share - if you don't like TMI then just go to the bottom of this message where I will talk about good old fashioned blueberry loaf.

I was watching a little tele the other night and the local community channel was doing a report from a close by salon where they were threading eyebrows. I have heard of this being done before, but didn't know where you could get it done. So, I did a little 'research' the next day and found the salon and booked an appointment. 

Now for the TMI. I don't pluck or wax my brows. I never have. I once had them waxed; each time the woman would pull the strip off I would practically jump out of my chair as if I wasn't expecting it. I took a close up picture of myself on the Stagette this past weekend (I had had a few bevvies and I was trying to make my friends laugh - it worked) and when I looked at the picture the next day I was a little mortified of my mono-brow. How come no one has told me?? So here is the Before.

Before.
Now. Threading may want to have it's name changed to something like 'Eyebrow death threading' or 'I would rather have a root canal than have my brows threaded'. Seriously. So bloody painful. I think that the 'art' or 'concept' is pretty amazing - but the pain - feeling each hair pulled from your brow - not so fun. I have a relatively high pain threshold but this was pretty brutal. My eyes were watering so badly. I had to keep stopping the woman so that I could catch my breath. I am not sure if I am going to do it again - we'll see how the mono grows back in.  Here is the After. Can you see the difference? 

After.
I would really appreciate it if no one writes me and says stuff like 'Hey Ms. Mono-brow'. I have shared some deepest darkests here. No one wants to admit that they have a mono.

Tomorrow is a big day. Not only is cuzzie Jean coming down for the day (can't wait to see her), but it is dress shopping day. I kind of don't know what to expect. I am excited and nervous and anxious... I hope that it goes well and that we have fun.

Here is a sweet little treat that we found to be quite delicious and it was very easy to make. I used my Banana loaf recipe and just altered it slightly. I didn't have any whole wheat flour - so I had to use unbleached - but I will try this again (and would have tomorrow morning for cuzzie to have when she arrives, but someone in the house (not Magnum or Jozie) ate the apple sauce) with the whole wheat flour.

Blueberry loaf

2 cups of flour
1/2 cup of sugar
2 tsp of baking powder
1 tsp of baking soda
Pinch of salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/3 cup applesauce (unsweetened)
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

Pre-heat oven to 350. In a large bowl mix all of the dry ingredients. In a small bowl mix together the applesauce and oil. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Add the walnuts and blueberries - stir together gently. 

In a lightly greased loaf pan - pour in the batter - and bake in the 350 oven for 35-40 minutes. Remove from the pan, let it rest for a couple of minutes - and enjoy!

Chris rated this a 5!

Alright folks. I have to try and boost up Canuckula spirits. Our boys did not win tonight - and therefore, there is sadness all around. 

Have a great weekend.

Loves. 

Enjoy!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Looking for inspiration - looking, looking...

I went on a mission after work today to Michael's to see if I could find some inspiration for making our invitations. Amanda got her invitations at Michael's and I think that they are incredible. You can see them here. While I was there, a couple of things happened: 1. I was not inspired; and 2. I had to use the loo so badly that I couldn't concentrate - hence, I was lacking inspiration. I will go round 2 this week, with an empty bladder. I know what I want - I just get it set in my head and have a hard time moving away from that. I also had one of those 'oh my god, I'm getting married!!!' moments in there too. I just had never been in the 'wedding' aisle before and I thought - wow, you know, I haven't had to shop for wedding stuff before. Sigh.



I made this for dinner last week. It was a quick dinner. I had a craving for something like this - something a little spicy, creamy and relatively light. I cheated and bought a jar of Butter chicken sauce, and a small can of coconut milk. I didn't know that they had the small cans - just like a tomato paste can. 

1 onion
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts - chopped into small pieces
1 cauliflower - chopped into small pieces
1 red, green and yellow pepper 
1 zucchini - chopped into small pieces
1 can of white navy beans
1 cello bag of spinach
1 jar of butter chicken sauce
1 small can of coconut milk

In a large skillet saute the onion. Add the chicken and saute for about 4 minutes. Add the butter chicken sauce and the coconut milk, continue simmering. After about 5 minutes add all of the vegetables and beans, except for the spinach. Let the dish simmer for 15 minutes until the veggies are at the consistency that you like, and then add the spinach as it only takes a couple of minutes to cook. 

And that's it! I served this with Naan bread. Chris loved it and rated it a 5!

Speaking of Chris' rating system - something that he has used for many, many years. He never really rated my food - but I always got a 'this is the best thing that I have ever eaten'. So recently, I have noticed that there are two shows on tv - basically with this concept. One is called 'The Best Thing I've Ever Ate' and 'The Best Of'. Do you think that they're copying me? 


On our little getaway this past weekend, I picked up a bottle of Balsamic Vinegar. It is more of a creamier balsamic vinegar - and it is delicious. I love it when you find something that brings out the taste in food. I whipped up a greek salad tonight - just tomatoes and peppers, and then added some goat cheese, a very small drizzle of olive olive and then probably a tsp of this balsamic vinegar - and omg! the flavour is unreal. Such a simple dish, but the flavour of the vinegar makes it taste like oh so much more. 

That's it for me for tonight. I am signing off. 

Loves.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Helloha!

Helloha. I think that I just made that word up today. I am pretty excited b/c it's like 'Hello!' and 'Aloha' all in the same word. I am sure that you can appreciate my excitement. Ok, I may have just found it on urban dictionary - but I hadn't heard of it before today - so I am still excited.

I have been up to no good over the past week. Well, no good is probably not the best way to describe it. I've been busy - living life and loving it.

This past weekend, I went up to Parksville and stayed at the Beach Acres Resort for Tracy's stagette. Tracy is getting married in 16 days! 16 days!! It seems just like yesterday when she and JR became engaged. You know what else happens in 16 days? Me being the MC at their wedding! Oh god, what have I signed up for??? I thought that it was going to be easy peezy and now - not so sho! I know that it will all come together - I am just going to try and get my 'she-ite' together and whip up something fancy.



Ok back to the stagette. It was so much fun. 9 ladies - just us - 2 condos - ocean view - quick outting to Coombs - lots of incredible food - lots of great chats - all in all - so much fun. Tracy had a really great time - and it was good to meet all of her friends.

I have been doing some cooking - not too much - I will post some pics and then share the recipes in the next little while.


I have a big weekend coming up. I am going wedding dress shopping. I am having mixed feelings about the entire thing. Part of me is at that point in the wedding plans - where it is slowly sinking in that I am getting married. I'M GETTING MARRIED! It's like I have waited to plan a wedding for so long - all the while not even really necessarily wanting to be married - and now that it is here - I still am in a little of that 'pinch me' mode. Cuzzie Jeannie is coming down for the day - which is why I heart her so. She is excited to be here for the day - which makes thing a bit easier. I am not a good shopper with other people - I like to go in, try it on, and that's that. I just don't think that trying on a wedding dress will be able to be the same kind of shopping experience. I know that I want to be slimmer for my wedding - I don't want that to ruin my day though - I want to enjoy the experience - embrace the moment - and work on myself for the wedding day.  We will make it a memorable day and I will enjoy all of it.

Well that's it for tonight. I have lots of stuff to get off my chest.

Alright - be good. 

Loves.

Enjoy!