When I learned how easy it was to make vinaigrette at home, I was instantly converted. Why bother with preservative-filled supermarket salad dressing when you can quickly whip up fresh dressings at home using just a few key ingredients? The fun thing about salad dressing is that once you’ve figured out how to make a basic vinaigrette, you can play around with adding extra ingredients to match your meal or just to get fancy for the fun of it. Try adding in minced garlic or shallots, hot chilli flakes, sundried tomato, fresh or dried herbs and even parmesan cheese!
A few days ago I enjoyed an evening at the One of a Kind Spring show with some lovely friends. I haven’t been to the show in years, opting to hit up the local, indie craft shows instead. And although this show did feel more corporate than the smaller ones I’m used to, it was a fantastic experience with lots of familiar makers and I will definitely be returning for the next one.
One of the biggest problems I’ve had with transitioning to a gluten-free diet is the lack of good bread options out there. I’ve tried a few different brands now and just find them to be incredibly bland, not to mention high in sugar and a serious hit to the wallet. So this weekend,after buying 100 different kinds of flour and starch (alright, I only had to buy 5…but it felt like 100), I was finally ready to tackle Chatelaine’s Gluten-free Multi-grain Bread recipe. Continue reading “Gluten-Free Bread Success!”
Do you ever find yourself in the office lunchroom drooling over your coworkers’ gourmet lunches while you begrudgingly devour your tuna sandwich? Well, I have! And if I’ve learned anything from my lunchtime envy, it’s the power of the Sunday meal prep routine.
Sundays are sacred at my house. They are for sleeping in with cats tucked in along our knees and big breakfasts. Sunday afternoons usually include naps with the dogs and some time to enjoy a good book. And Sunday evenings are for a glass of wine and prepping for the week ahead. Beyond the standard email check and laundry, I’ve started to set aside time to make 1 or 2 meals in the early evenings – usually a soup or a chilli and I’m always on the hunt for new recipes.
Here are some of my tried and tested favourites:
When my husband and I stopped eating meat, we added a block of tofu to our weekly shopping list. We didn’t want to eat too much of it what with all the focus on added estrogen from soy but once a week seemed like a good way to get some protein into our diets. The problem was, we weren’t loving it. No matter how we marinated, baked and fried, our tofu was spongy and bland.
That is until we discovered the art of pressing tofu!
I don’t know if you remember last summer but if you were living anywhere near Toronto, you will recall that it was H-O-T. I’m talkin’ popsicles for breakfast hot. Of course, this was also the first year that we made a real effort at growing an edible garden in our tiny city backyard and if you’ve gardened even a tiny bit, you will know that super heat and plants don’t mix. The one crop that did do insanely well were the hot peppers with jalapenos and chillies that produced straight through until October. Most of our tomatoes made it through as well which meant I could experiment with hot sauce. I fermented a few batches but the biggest hit by far was a stove-top hot sauce. Bonus: these cute hot sauces made great Christmas gifts!
If you’ve ever been to Portugal, you will have noticed how much we love our cod fish. This fish has been a staple of the Portuguese diet for centuries and every family has their own favourite way to prepare it. In my house, we make a casserole with salt cod, chickpeas, potatoes and eggs – often called “Bacalhau a Gomes de Sa”. This recipe is even a hit amongst our non-Portuguese dinner guests who have been known to enjoy the cold leftovers for breakfast.
I am a cookbook junkie. I know, I know, you can find a recipe for just about anything on the internet but cookbooks are special. I love to sit down on a Saturday morning with a stack of cookbooks and a cup of tea to plan out meals for the week ahead. My most well-loved cookbooks have cracked spines, notes in the margins and splatter stains on the pages. The problem is that most of my cookbooks are not well-loved. Sure, they look pretty all lined up on my counter but when it comes down to it, the recipes just aren’t for me.