Vincent Talleu, Master Baker

I am a huge fan of these four Vincent Talleu‘s youtube videos showing him in his bakery making bread, chocolate pastries, etc. I could watch these all day long if I had time.

Check out this bread making marathon one. This one if my favourite. It’s 11:38 minutes long, but worth every second you spend watching it. I’d be highly surprised if you don’t drool or exclaim from five new tricks you pick up watching him.

Master bakers. Bless their hearts. They’re not only awesome to work with, but awesome to stand back and watch if they let you.

No roasting pan? No problem!

I don’t own a roasting pan big enough to roast a whole chicken. I never bothered buying one since it’s just the two of us here, and it’s cheaper to buy a whole chicken roasted from the grocery store.

However, if I were inclined to cook one for a special dinner, I wouldn’t sweat the missing pan. I would simply take my Bundt pan out and do this. Brilliant, no?

Bundt pan with chicken

MSL’s Dutch Blueberry Pancake

Years ago I used to collect the small Every Day Food digest mags from the supermarket. Not all of them, but the ones that had enough interesting content to justify the purchase.

And in their March 2009 issue, they introduced their cast iron skillet dessert called Warm Berries ‘N’ Dumplings as well as the this scrumptious Dutch Blueberry Pancake, and they went hand-in-hand with Martha’s version of the classic, Blueberry Grunt. I have been drooling ever since. I always say I’m going to make each of these desserts during blueberry season, but I never do.

This year I will! Will you? (I know Dr. Maggie will. :-))

Blueberry Dutch Baby Pancakes Recipe


(All pictures and recipes are courtesy of MSL.)

Italian (Chopped) Dressing Salad

Oh, I do love me a chopped salad something fierce! This looks like something I would definitely add to my salad repertoire. This one popped up on this morning. Check out this Italian Dressing Salad over at Hot Pot Cooking.

Also, I love when my husband walks into the kitchen and just starts doing dishes on his own, without being asked or prompted by passive-aggressive hinting. I love that boy!

Giada’s Nonna’s Lemon Ricotta Muffins

Lemon Ricotta Muffins by Giada
Lemon Ricotta Muffins by Giada

Giada’s Nonna’s Lemon Ricotta Muffins recipe. If you haven’t tried or tasted these, you MUST. This one is a favourite of my husband’s. I didn’t toast the slivered almonds on top, but I bet if I had, that would have simply added another dimension of flavour to these babies. And believe me, they’re already bursting with amazing flavours and sport a texture that will think you’re eating part of a cloud.

Why are you still reading this post? Go make these muffins. NOW!

Personal Size Pumpkin Pie Tortes

Personal Size Pumpkin Pie Torte
Personal Size Pumpkin Pie Torte
Every year as Summer gives way to Fall, my husband’s mind starts to drift away from ice cream to pumpkin pie. This is a little recipe I made up a few years back that he liked, and I really haven’t shared it much online since. I want to change that.
I have two small torte pans I use in favour of one big pie plate at home. It’s easier for me to bake up two and freeze or give away one of the two than to deal with eating pie morning, noon and night for the better part of a week anytime I get into pie making. This recipe is designed to be split up perfectly, but it will also fit all into one pie pan or plate if that’s what you want to do, or it can be doubled if you want to make a long sheet of pumpkin pie squares for a large crowd.

(From the archives)

24 Lady Fingers, crushed up to fine grind (not powder grind)
1C Butter, melted

2 1/4C Prepared pumpkin pie filling
1/3C Evaporated milk
1 Egg, large, well beaten

Finely grind up Lady Fingers in food processor. Melt butter and add to a small bowl before dumping in Lady Finger grinds. Mix well and pour half of the mixture into each of the small torte pans (roughly 8” – 12”).

Press the mixture outwards from the middle and up the sides all around the pans. Place the torte pans in the freezer for 10 minutes to set the crust. In the meantime, mix the pie filling with the evaporated milk and well beaten egg and set aside.

Pumpkin Pie Torte Crust
Pumpkin Pie Torte Crust

When the crusts are hard, pour the mixed pie filling into each pan and bake for 15 minutes at 425. Reduce temperature to 375 and bake for an additional 30 minutes or until an inserted knife in the centre of each pie comes out clean. Serve warm with whipped cream on top and hot coffee, tea or cocoa at its side.

Fish al Fresho

Fish Al Fresco Lunch
Fish Al Fresho Lunch

This was a lovely, light and tasty lunch I often make at work using leftover fish fillets. The salad is in the morning and left it in the marinade to rest in the fridge for 3+ hours making the most of the veg from my FIL’s garden as well as mine. Store bought items work just as well if you have them onhand.

The marinade is simple:
one glug of white vinegar
two glugs of olive oil
fresh parsley

Add to this vegetable medley:
diced white onion
red pepper
diced tomato
diced cucumber

Cover and chill until time to serve with the fish.

That’s it, that’s all. Not much magic to make it, but people will think there is when they taste it. It looks so pretty, no?