Thursday, January 22, 2009
Thanks for all of your sweet comments the other day too, I appreciate every single one of you and have been reading your blogs for months now, even though I haven't always been vocal about it :/
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
I'm not sure if there's anyone still out there... I know I've been gone for a while. A LOT has happened in the past few months. When I last left you I was living in Montreal with my boyfriend, however now I've moved home to live with my parents in Nova Scotia (I don't blame you if you don't know where that is, there's not much to see haha) and the boy is attending nursing school at UMass Amherst, so we're doing the long distance thing for now. Not fun. I've thought about taking up blogging again but changing the focus of the blog.. I'm not sure what will happen yet though. I just wanted to give a little shoutout to let you know I am still reading your blogs and lurking in blogland :)
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
For my day, I chose pizza. It's such a fast and easy dish using my new fave dough recipe. I doubled it to get 2 pizzas, topping one with buffalo sauce, tomato sauce, chicken and mozzarella like the first time I made this, and for the second one I just coated the dough with olive oil and spread caramelized onions, walnuts, and Swiss cheese on top. In retrospect, I wish I had used some figs on this one too, but they weren't totally necessary and both pizzas tasted fantastic.
Then for dinner, we had Smitten Kitchen peanut sesame noodles, except that we had them hot, and had vegetables on the side so that each noodle bite could be as peanut buttery noodley as possible (birthday boy request).
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
The recipe to change my mind was none other than pizza dough. Basic, simple pizza dough. That's what Deb told me, and though I feared that it couldn't possibly work, I believed her (having already made her delicious pumpkin butter didn't hurt in helping to instill a little trust).
All that was asked of me was to mix together flour, yeast (I used instant because my store was out of active dry somehow) salt, water and olive oil. Knead, form into a ball and place it in a greased bowl covered with plastic wrap. Let it rise for 1-2 hours somewhere warm- I preheated my oven at 200 for a few minutes, shut it off, and then stowed my growing dough in there. Push the air out of it. Let it rest another 20 minutes under the plastic wrap again, then take it out and roll in into desired shape (in my case, a deformed circular rectangle, in Deb's case a perfect circle). Top it with whatever your heart desires and bake it quickly in a scorching hot oven. Enter pizza nirvana. Check!
I made mine buffalo chicken style, by mixing some sliced precooked chicken cubes with 1/2 cup tomato sauce and 1-2 tbsp buffalo chicken sauce. I also used mozzarella cheese and sliced green onions, but was really wishing I had blue cheese on hand to make this truly perfect.
Ta da! You can bet I was incredibly proud of my pizza. You can also bet that I will be making this again. Now that I've conquered my fear of yeast, I can't wait to move onto more ambitious dishes (bread, or cinnamon rolls perhaps?).
The pizza dough recipe can be found here, and really now that I've done it you have no excuse not to try it. No one should be scared of yeast :)
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
The rest of Quebec involved an hour-long detour through god knows where and then we entered New Brunswick, which shall now be know as the land of the moose. By now it was insanely foggy and 2am and there were these huge moose crossing signs every 5km with ATTENTION written in bright red letters underneath a picture of a huge moose. I never thought I would be scared of moose, but I am now. I did not want one of those going through my windshield. Luckily though, we arrived moose-free and safe in Nova Scotia at 4am. Of course we woke up my mom and her new PUPPY which we had to play with for a bit before heading to bed at the very reasonable hour of 5:30am.
After the trauma involved in actually arriving, the visit itself was quite relaxing. My dad bought us 4 pounds (yes you read that correctly) of super fresh NS scallops for dinner Friday night. They were fresh enough to eat raw- I tried one this way and wow, it just melted in my mouth. I have never before tasted seafood that good. We had our big turkey dinner on Saturday which was also amazing and involved homemade stuffing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, wine, and those infamous NYTimes Chocolate Chip Cookies. They are worth the hype, go make some now!!!
We left Sunday morning and got back into the city (moose-free again) late that evening. So while it was a quick visit, I'm certainly glad we went. Except for that speeding ticket.
Now that I'm back in my own home, I feel completely immersed in the Fall season. All of the leaves are turning gorgeous shades of red and yellow and the air is crisp, yet the sun keeps the days fairly warm. This is by far my favourite time of year, and not just for the scenery. You may exclaim over perfectly ripe strawberries and summer tomatoes all you like- but for me, nothing beats an apple right off the tree in the middle of Fall. I didn't get a chance to go apple picking while home (and there aren't many orchards in downtown Montreal) so I've contented myself with luscious Honeycrisps for eating raw and deliciously tart Granny Smiths for cooking. Apple pie and apple crisp are quintessential Autumn desserts for me, and the smell of cinnamon in my kitchen is comfort at its best, so it wasn't hard for me to choose what to make for dessert tonight. I decided to play with the flavours a little by adding in a pear to this apple crisp recipe, and wow what a difference it made! I will be going back to this recipe all Autumn long :)
Monday, October 6, 2008
There's a new nut butter in town, and boy is this one good! Macadamia nuts are my absolute fave (how awesome would it be if Larabar made a Macadamia Nut Cookie bar?!?!), and in this spread they provide a perfect sweetness. The creamy texture and taste made this hands-down the best nut butter I have ever tried. I had seen this brand (Nuts to You Nut Butter Inc.) in stores before but shied away from the $8/jar price tag. Tonight, however, I found it in a tiny Arabic grocery store for only $3.29- that's cheaper than the pb is at my favourite health food store! And at that price, peanut butter is fighting a losing battle for shelf space in my kitchen.
In other news, the boyfriend and I are embarking on an adventure this week- we are renting a car and driving from Montreal to my hometown in Nova Scotia to celebrate (Canadian) Thanksgiving with my family. Sounds lovely and all, except that this glorious trip is going to take us 14 hours to complete. Yep, that's one way. Needless to say, 28 hours on the road within a 4 day span means LOTS of car snacks- what are your favourites?? I have a lot of stocking up to do!! Hopefully we don't get lost in rural Quebec or run into moose in New Brunswick (they have moose crossing signs all over there). I'll be sure to fill you all in on whether I make it through the drive with my sanity intact, and of course post some pics of the fresh seafood and turkey dinner waiting for us in NS!
Have a great week all! :)
Monday, September 29, 2008
For this smoothie I started with roughly a cup of frozen mango chunks. Then I added a good handful of spinach (washed and stems removed), some ice cubes, and a little unsweetened soymilk (or you could use water, to make it Raw). I gave it an extra-long run in the blender just to make sure I wouldn't wind up with spinachy bits. What I finally got to taste was a rich, thick, refreshing smoothie. The spinach gave a great texture and provided a balance to the sweet mango. I loved it this way, but if you're a little wary of spinach in your smoothies or want a sweeter taste, adding in half a banana would most likely add that extra creamy sweetness.
Greens in general have been on my mind a lot lately since I started reading Kristen's Raw, both her blog and her raw lifestyle pages. While I don't think a 100% raw vegan lifestyle is the one for me, I really like her philosophy and her energy. I do feel "better", more alive, when I eat pure, unprocessed foods in their natural states. I'm going to try to do a raw day- just to see how it makes me feel. And if that's the only 100% raw day I ever do, that's fine by me, because no matter what else I'm eating I know my new love for green smoothies will ensure I'm getting in *some* raw all the time :)