Monday, December 16, 2013

Oatmeal Bars with Icing


1 3/4cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 cup shortening
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup molasses
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 cups rolled oats
1 cup raisins
2/3 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup icing sugar
2 tsp milk

350 degrees.  Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment.

Whisk flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ginger.

In a Kitchenaid mixer, beat shortening and sugar together. Beat in eggs, the molasses and vanilla.  Then mix in dry ingredients.

 Then mix in oats, raisins and pecans.  Cut batter into four.  Form each into a log, two length-wise on each cookie sheet.  Bake for 19 - 20 minutes.  Let cool for 5 minutes and cut into 1 inch bars.  After the bars are completely cool, stir icing sugar and milk together and drizzle over bars.

Coffee Toffee Cookies


2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp instant espresso powder
1 Tbsp hot water
2/3 cup melted butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup toffee chips (I used Skor)

350 degrees.  Line two cookie sheets with parchment.

Whisk flour, baking soda and salt together.  I do this in my large measuring cup so I don't have an extra bowl to wash.  In a large bowl, whisk espresso powder and hot water together and then add butter and sugar and vanilla.  Stir well to mix and if mixture is still hot, mix in eggs a few drops at a time so you won't get scrambled eggs.

Add dry mixture to wet and mix as little as possible to incorporate.  Fold in chips.

This will make 24 cookies and they spread out so only 6 per sheet, 2 Tbsp per cookie.
Bake 16 minutes, let cool and then bake remaining dough.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Mustard Beans


16 cups of yellow beans, washed and cut into pieces (I used 10 cups)
3 cups of sugar
1/2 cup of dry mustard
1/2 cup of flour
3 cups white vinegar
1 Tbsp celery seed
1 Tbsp turmeric

So it won't be lumpy, whisk the dry mustard and flour together.  Add one cup of vinegar at a time and whisk until there aren't any lumps.  Boil the beans just until they are tender and then drain.  I then put them in cold water to stop the cooking process.  Pour your mustard and flour mixture into a large pot.  Add the sugar and spices and cook until boiling.  At the same time, I am sterilizing my bottles.  If you need directions, check my blog for chili sauce post.

  Whisk constantly until the mixture thickens like caramel.

Dump your beans in.

Gently stir to mix beans in sauce.

Spoon into your sterilized jars.

The recipe says it makes 7 pints but I didn't have enough beans for 16 cups.  I had about 10 cups but I made the full sauce recipe and I used it all.  I would advise you to use 10 cups.  I used 5 and 1/2 small jam jars and 2 pints jars.  I then did a 10 minute water bath (except the part jar which went right into the fridge).


Monday, June 17, 2013

Blueberry and Peach Clafoutis

I can't believe I haven't already posted on this dessert.  It is definitely in my top ten.  Over the years, I've tried many different recipes for clafoutis and this one is a variation of Julia Child's.  I think I like it the best.


1 1/4 cup milk
1/3 cup white sugar
3 eggs
1 Tbsp vanilla
pinch salt
1/2 cup flour

4 peaches
approx a cup of blueberries
1/3 cup white sugar
icing sugar

This is such an easy recipe...exactly the kind I like.  Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease your deep dish pie plate (I use an oil baking spray).  In a blender, mix the first 6 ingredients until very smooth.  You can strain the batter if you haven't removed the white stringy bits from the eggs or if you have any lumps.  Pour a thin layer onto the bottom of your pie plate and place in the oven to set.  Peel and section your peaches.  I used frozen blueberries but I usually use fresh ones.  Take out the pie plate and arrange your fruit.  Sprinkle with 1/3 cup of sugar.  

Pour in the rest of the batter and bake for 40 to 45 minutes until golden and puffed up.

Let it cool and then sprinkle with icing sugar.

Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Pork Tenderloin with Wild Blueberry Sauce

Wow, it's sure been a long time since I posted here.  I have been eating but not very well.  I also haven't been trying out new recipes or bothering to photograph anything.  That better change as we get into swimsuit season ;)...

Tonight I made Pork Tenderloin with Wild Blueberry Sauce...


pork tenderloin
dried thyme
salt and pepper
1 tsp oil
1/4 cup red wine

Blueberry Sauce

1/2 cup red wine
1 cup wild blueberries (I used frozen)
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp grated lemon rind
1 tsp cornstarch

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Rub pork tenderloin with salt, pepper and dried thyme.  Heat oil in an oven proof pan and brown tenderloin.  Deglaze pan with red wine and roast in oven for 30 minutes. Let meat rest while you make the sauce.

Turn heat up to med-high.  Add red wine, blueberries, sugar and lemon zest and bring to a boil.  Mix cornstarch with a little cold water and stir into hot pan.  As soon as sauce thickens, spoon over slices of pork and serve.  I roasted fingerling potatoes, garlic and carrots in the oven while the pork was cooking to make a simple supper.


Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

I was using up an over ripe banana today...


1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 cup mashed banana (about 1 large)
1/2 cup buttermilk (you can substitute sour cream)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare a loaf pan with non-stick spray.

Beat butter and sugar together until creamed.

Beat in eggs, banana and vanilla. Stir in chocolate chips.  Fold in flour, baking soda and salt.

Note - I ran out of A-P flour and substituted 1 C pastry flour and 1/2 C wholewheat flour

Bake for one hour or until a toothpick inserted in the top comes out clean.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Veggie Delight Croissant

This is one of my favourite summer sandwiches even though it is February.  You really need cream cheese and alfalfa sprouts but you can use other veggies - like tomato, cucumber, spinach, sweet onion.

Tonight I baked up some fresh croissants (I buy mine at Almost Perfect.  They need at least 8 hours to thaw and rise.)

Then I slathered on cream cheese, thinly sliced cucumber and tomato and topped it all with sprouts.

Yum yum.


Friday, January 4, 2013

Weight Loss 2012

I haven't posted in a while but I have still been cooking.  The pressures of the Christmas season have gotten in the way but I promise I will start posting again.  I need to start cooking healthy food again.  There was too much fat food indulgence this Christmas.  I started last year trying to get healthier by planning menus and it worked.  I hate to admit it but I started the year weighing 236 lbs and then I went on to LOSE 37 lbs.  Still feels good to say that.  I'm really happy with what I've accomplished this year but this is only the beginning.  I have a goal to lose 50 more lbs.  Wish me luck!