September 27, 2007

cornmeal blini

cornmeal blini

I don't really know why this is called a "blini". Looks like a pancake to me! According to my friendly online encylopedia, blini is supposed to be a thin pancake, similar to a crepe.

I think this cookbook must be wrong because these "blini's" are far from thin like a crepe. The batter was thick and there was no way I could make it thin and crepe like. Maybe I should write a note to the editor :)

We ate these for dinner one night. I made some savory stuff to eat my blinis pancakes with. I mixed up some onions, garlic, red peppers, bacon & corn in a thickened (with cornstarch) broth. It was good, but then, bacon could probably make brussel sprouts tasty.... well, almost.

cornmeal blini-fd0000

The original recipe uses smoked salmon on top of these cornmeal blini's but I'm just not a smoked salmon type of gal. If you are, give it a try.


cornmeal blini
makes 24 pieces

1/2 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup flour
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
pinch pepper
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp butter, melted
1/2 cup shredded cheddar or monterey jack cheese
1/4 cup corn kernals

whisk together cornmeal, flour, sugar, soda, salt & pepper.

In separate bowl whisk together buttermilk, egg yolk & butter. Pour over flour mixture. Sprinkle with cheese and corn. Stir just until flour is incorporated.

Heat skillet over medium heat. Use 1 tbsp batter for each corn cake and cook each side for about a minute until golden.

Recipe from: Cornmeal "Blini" with smoked salmon, The Complete Canadian Living Cookbook.

September 26, 2007

hoisin & peanut butter drumsticks

hoisin & peanut butter drumsticks

Though we regularily eat meat around here, I don't blog about it too often. I don't usually prep the meat in any way, I buy it that way so there really is rare entries about various meat that I have prepared.

We regularily buy pre-marinated cuts of meat, turkey sausage & chicken breasts that I usually just add nothing to... I know, how boring!

If you remember, I made some noodles with a hoisin/peanut butter sauce a while ago. So, I thought I'd try it out on some drumsticks.

I know, it's just barely a step above doing nothing. Slather on sauce. Bake. How labor intensive! Har har.

But, I was quite pleased because they turned out. Easy and flavorful AND my kids ate them, which is a big bonus. Suh-weet!


hoisin & peanut butter drumsticks

Equal parts: peanut butter & hoisin sauce
Water - to dilute down the sauce.
Sesame seeds - optional

In a bowl, make an equal paste of peanut butter & hoisin sauce. Mix together and dilute with water to make the sauce less thick and more spreadable.

Place the drumsticks on a baking sheet and slather the above sauce.

Cook at 425 F for about 40 minutes.

September 24, 2007

zucchini cakes with dill and feta

zucchini cakes with dill and feta

Another zucchini recipe! Get used to it!

I did spare you all at least one time. I actually didn't post a BBQ'd zucchini I made about a month ago. It just didn't turn out and neither did my pictures of it.

We already have given out 3 zucchini's to folks. And over the weekend, I actually shredded two very giant sized ones and put them into bags and into the deep freezer for use later on.

I tried this recipe out from a friend who highly recommended it. She really was pleased with it. I, on the other hand, felt it was a bit more effort than I wanted to put in. It was tasty but just too much work for me. I'm don't like things taking too long to make. Also, I found the cakes a bit greasy from frying in oil, even after draining onto paper towels.

If I were to make this again, I would likely leave it as a "mash" instead of forming them into "cakes" to cut down the prep time. Maybe even add ground beef to it for those non vegie only people.


zucchini cakes with dill and feta

500 g zucchini, coursely grated
1 medium onion, diced
Olive Oil
1 garlic clove, minced
3 Tbsp flour
1 large egg, beaten
100 g feta
small bunch dill
salt & pepper to taste

Coarsely grate zucchini into a colander, sprinkle lightly with salt and leave in the sink for half an hour or so.

Chop onions finely and warm them gently with a little oil in a shallow frying pan. They should soften but not color. Pat zucchini dry with paper towels or wring them out lightly in your hands. Peel and chop garlic and stir into the onions along with zucchini. When all is soft and starting to turn pale gold, stir in flour and continue cooking for a couple of minutes or so, with the occasional stir, to cook the flour. Beat egg lightly and stir it into onion mixture, then crumble in the cheese and chopped dill. Season with black pepper and a little salt.

Heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil in a shallow pan, drop heaped tablespoons of the mixture into the hot oil and let them cook until they are golden on the underside. Turn carefully - they will be fragile - and cook the other side. Lift the cakes out with a spatula and drain briefly on paper towels.

Recipe from: Zucchini cakes with dill and feta, "Kitchen Diaries", Nigel Slater.

September 22, 2007

french fries

french fries-fd0000

It's really rare if I deepfry anything. I usually bake or bbq various meats or vegies.

I make some mean roasted potatoes but a french fry is just not the same baked. I'm sure that some of you have experimented and would tell me otherwise but I've yet to be waivered. It's called a french fry for a reason.

If we do eat french fries, it's that few times a month we hit the fast food chains because I'm too lazy or busy to cook. But every once in a while, I'll make a batch at home.

french fries

I watched a program about french fries and how they really should be fried twice. Once, at a lower temperature, then drained and fried again, at a higher temperature, to get it's crispiness. I have tried it before but quite frankly, I'm not fond of standing in front of my stove getting all greasy. Frying it once is really just good enough for me.

Pomme frites anyone?

french fries

Potatoes, sliced

Nothing fancy here. All I do is clean my potatoes, slice them (I don't even take the skins off) and fry away in enough oil to cover the batch I add to the pan. I have tried various varieties of potatoes and I use either canola or vegetable oil. They all turn out well.

Once they fry to a nice golden hue (couple of minutes) I put them on a paper towel and shake some salt onto them. Ready to eat.

September 19, 2007

zucchini layered "lasagna" / "moussaka"

zucchini layered _lasagna_ - _moussaka_

What happens when your husband plants too many zucchini plants and lets them grow to be huge puppies?

You get creative, is what happens! I made a dish of layered zucchini slices and meat in tomato sauce, baked with cheese on top.

But the question that begs to be answered, is this a "lasagna" or a "moussaka"?

According to the dictionary...

Lasagna is a dish made by baking such pasta with layers of sauce and fillings such as cheese or meat.

Moussaka is a dish consisting of layers of ground lamb or beef and sliced eggplant topped with a cheese sauce and baked.

So, no pasta or eggplant here. What the heck is my concoction? Maybe I should come up with my own word?

Hmmmmm... Zusagna? Zussaka?

This ones a toughie! Any thoughts?


zucchini layered "lasagna" / "moussaka"

2 garlic cloves, minced
1 onion, chopped
500 grams or 1 pound lean or extra lean ground beef
1 tbsp brown sugar (unless your tomato sauce or pasta sauce is slightly sweet)
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
Can of tomato or pasta sauce
Medium size zucchini, cut into slices
Shredded cheese of your choice, I used cheddar.

Brown ground beef, garlic & onions. Add sugar, chili powder, paprika, salt & pepper. Stir in enough tomato sauce, reserving some to put on the top zucchini layer. Simmer, partially covered, for 10 minutes.

Slice up zucchini into thin slices and layer into a 13-inch x 9-inch baking pan. Put a layer of meat sauce. Continue to layer zucchini slices and meat sauce. Put a last top layer of zucchini slices and add the reserved tomato sauce.

Bake, covered, at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle with Cheddar Bake an additional 10 minutes. Remove from heat and serve.

September 17, 2007

soy sauce glazed green beans with almonds

soy sauce glazed green beans with almonds

The hubby planted Red Scarlett Beans this year. I remember when I picked this batch, a while back, thinking that we might be able to have another small batch but that would be it because the vines looked empty.

I was wrong.

The bees have come out of hiding in the last month and pollinated all the pretty red blossoms on the vines and now we have lots of beans. Beans here, beans there, beans, really, everywhere.

red scarlett beans

I plan on blanching a bunch of them (via boiling water for 3 minutes or a steamer for almost 5 minutes) Then plunging them in cold water and allow to dry before putting them in plastic bags and into the freezer for use in the winter months.

One does not want to overdose on beans.


soy sauce glazed green beans with almonds

small batch of young green beans
1-2 cloves of minced garlic
1/2 onion, chopped
soy sauce
handful of sliced almonds

Heat up a pan with some oil in it. Saute garlic, onions & beans together for a few minutes. Splash some soy sauce to it and add onions. Serve.

September 15, 2007

mocha latte

mocha latte-fd0000

It's pretty sad when you are too busy to even do simple fun stuff, like update your own blog!

This tends to happen, way too often actually. I wish I was better at putting myself first. Or at least balancing things in my life, especially when it gets super busy, so to include a little bit of me time. It always feels so very selfish to put my needs first. Why is it so easy for some folks to do that?

One thing that I do do for myself, is let my morning coffee be "me time". I usually love to read the morning paper or stuff on the internet while sipping coffee. I tend to tell the kids to "leave mommy alone" and usually no one is calling my house wanting things at that time so it works out. Usually.

We drink drip coffee around here on the weekdays. A few months ago we bought a little cappuccino machine and now we enjoy an occasional cappuccino or mocha latte on the weekends.

Feels fancy. Just upped the quality of my "me time" I guess. hehe.

mocha latte

Well, that was the end of that. Back to work!


mocha latte

shot of espresso
1 cup of frothed milk
2 -3 tsp of cocoa powder

I'm assuming you have an espresso machine

Prepare a shot of espresso. Add hot cocoa mix of your choice.

Froth up a cup of milk and add it to the espresso/chocolate mix.


September 7, 2007

noodles in hoisin/peanut butter sauce

noodles in hoisin-peanut butter sauce

I've been running around like a chicken with my head chopped off. Did you hear that? Yup, that was me head, rolling down the kitchen "alley" and into a set of rolling "pins".

I'm wearing a lot of hats lately (on my chopped head of course) and I'm getting a wee bit tired of it. I'm hoping it slows down but unfortunately, it doesn't seem to be happening. No end in sight until maybe January. boo hoo.

So when this happens, it's hard to think about food. But we gotta eat, so that's when I pull out some frozen chinese food I bought at that huge bulk grocery store and make some sides. Like these noodles.

Quite frankly, I can not remember if I sauted the noodles with garlic and onions first before I added the sauce (I made this a short while ago - remember, my brain isn't intact with my typing fingers). But, really, you can go either way. (Plus, I can't tell by looking at the picture either! grumble, grumble).

Hoisin sauce and peanut butter are like best friends and they really dance well on the tastebuds. And, oh so easy to make.


noodles in hoisin/peanut butter sauce

Equal parts hoisin sauce and peanut butter
noodles of your choice: udon, shanghai, etc.
sesame seeds

Mix together equal portions of hoisin sauce and peanut butter. Dilute it down with some water to thin it down and make it more saucy.

Prepare noodles as per package, mix with the sauce and top with sesame seeds.


September 4, 2007

Name Meme.

I was "tagged" by Joelen from Joelen's Culinary Adventure's.

Here are the rules first...

Players, you must list one fact, word or tidbit that is somehow relevant to your life for each letter of your first or middle name.

When you are tagged you need to write your own blog-post containing your own first or middle name game facts, word or tidbit.

At the end of your blog-post, you need to choose one person for each letter of your name to tag. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

So if you've been tagged, please join in on the fun!


M is for money-wise. I'm pretty frugal or as I like to call it, fiscally responsible. Though I do have a lot of "stuff", I rarely buy things full price. I'm also a coupon clipper, yes, one of those people, bug me all you want but I save a lot of moola.

A for actress. Well, this isn't really accurate, I don't like acting at all but I am constantly being told I look like the actress Sandra Bull0ck. Ever since her first movie, Speed, I have never been able to get away from it. When I meet new people, they always give me the "You know who you look like?" or when I'm about to introduce myself they stop me and say "you're Sandra right? hahaha". It's the worst when she comes out with a movie, because people point it out a all.the.time.

K is for Kids. I have two little ones (3 yr old and a 1 yr old) and am currently a stay home mom for a bit longer. They keep me very, very busy.

I is for Interests. I have lots of them and I often say I'm a jack of all trades, master of none. I obviously love cooking & baking, as well as my new found hobby, photography. My hubby and I enjoy both minor and major home renovating & home design, I have my degree in chemistry and worked in pharmaceutical labs for several years. I have pastel paintings that I have dabbled in, built a fancy bookcase at a woodworking course I took, owned a internet cafe with my hubby, have made some of my own jewellery in the past, have sewed many things, and currently am finishing up my accounting certificate. Never a dull moment around here.

I tag the following people: (If you aren't into meme's, then no worries! No pressure.) Also, feel free to do the meme, even if you haven't been tagged.

i shot the chef
Kristina's Book Blog
Drowning in Laundry
milk and cookies
Related Posts with Thumbnails