Weekend 5 Recap

PoorGirlCannoli-2

Made the Cinnamon Cream Cheese Rollups (which I have dubbed the “poor girl’s cannoli” for some strange reason) today. They were easy to bang out, and pretty straight forward. A great recipe idea when you have kids who want to help bake something in the kitchen. It wasn’t until after my fourth “poor girl’s cannoli” that I remembered how many calories each one actually contain. Whoops! My bad. No wonder my stomach was so upset with me.

PoorGirlCannoli-1These would be a great little family gathering dessert idea, but I really can’t see me putting them out during a brunch with my friends. Although, I could be talked into making a small batch for the kids if someone requested a kid-friendly dessert as part of the buffet. I liked this, and so did the husband. Enough to recommend it to parents.

 

PorkKebabs-1PorkKebabs-3I first made the Sesame Chicken Kebabs using the recipe from this blog, but to be honest, there were way too many onions called for (which I knew going in from experience as a cook, but I remained faithful to the original recipe) and the meat was too wet to stick together let alone cling to the wood skewers (I should have taken pix of the mess in my frying pan when I made that batch. Yuck!), so I remade them using pork, half the onions, used herbs de Province, and added a half a cup of breadcrumbs to soak up a lot of the moisture.

PorkKebabs-5I also formed the meat into thicker logs, froze them, then pan fried them in lots of oil. When they came out of the pan, each was rolled around in the sesame seeds and then had the skewers inserted before plating them. I find ground pork tastes better than ground chicken does overall in this recipe. My husband loved the pork kebabs, just as I did, and he also didn’t like the chicken kebabs (too many onions, and the overall taste lingered for hours in our mouths). If you like food on a stick, then this recipe is for you!

PotatoFrittata-1I served my pork kebabs with this tasty potato frittata I whipped up without a recipe (sorry) for lunch today instead over a bed of fragrant Jasmine rice – as I did when I made the ground chicken version. That lunch earned me a fist bump from the husband. Love when that happens. Love!

 

                ADDENDUM:

GoldfishCrackers-1 GoldfishCrackers-2 Found some time today to make the Goldfish crackers. I’m not sure why I never made crackers before today, because they’re dead easy to make. I was floored at how simple it was the make the dough. The only time consuming part of making these crackers is cutting them out, because they’re so small and you then have to prick them with a fork, but I’m totally going to make crackers at home from now on! I will drop the amount of salt the recipe calls for when making them, but definitely these will happen again. And other types of crackers. Hopefully ones with a butter substitute or less butter called for. The crackers were very oily to handle. I didn’t like that part. Blech.

Tom&HerbBread-3 Tom&HerbBread-1I also baked the Tomato & Herb Bread. I have it resting right now so I won’t get a chance to taste it until some point on Monday. Probably with dinner. At the earliest. It looks great, and it baked up nicely. I have high hopes for this one. 🙂

Weekend 5 – Sept 20/13

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Tomato-Herb-Bread-10-495x4941. Fresh Tomato & Herb Bread: I’m thinking this will make a lovely companion to any soup or stew as the cold weather cranks up in the next few months. I’m putting it on today’s list in September because I want time to test this recipe and make a few batches to bake up and freeze so I don’t have to worry about wanting a few slices with dinner randomly at a moment’s notice. My mouth is watering just thinking about how it’s going to taste.

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Roll-Ups 0432. Cinnamon Cream Cheese Roll-ups: Now this is solely for the husband. Everything about it has his name written all over it. From the bread (check), to the cinnamon (check and check) to the filling (swoon), he will be pleased. Definitely!

 

 

ChanaMasala3. Chickpea Curry (Chana Masala): Kevin, from Closet Cooking, has this tasty and comfort looking spicy chickpea stew I really want to make and eat this very instant. Love this kind of stew over rice! This plays nicely into my chickpea addiction, so… Yeah, you just know I’m going to make a whole vat of this stuff to hoover back.

 

Goldfish-Crackers4. Homemade Goldfish Crackers: This is a no-brainer, right? Some days I come home from work in this zombie vegetable state, and the cooking just does not get done. Dinner? Eat air. Thirsty? Lick your lips. It’s brutal some nights around here. If it weren’t for snack foods like these crackers, my husband might waste away. 😉 (Ok, not really, but he would eat these every night for dinner if they were kicking around.)

sushiballs5. Chicken Teriyaki Sushi Balls: I have some ground pork left over from this week, so I may use them in these sushi balls. I may not, but I may. We’ll see if I’ve found another use for the pork by then or not. I have everything to make these right now but some defrosted chicken. These look like they’d be a great brunch item. I’d need a great dip for them, though. That shouldn’t be too hard to whip up.

(stroking chin) Hmm…

 

 

 

Muddling Through

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1. Found my iFone. It appears to slipped under the shelving unit in the basement that houses our laser printer, toners and paper. The casing on the phone is smooth plastic, and coincidentally a very close shade of teal to the carpeting it slid across, so we kept missing it visually. I had to get down on all fours to spot it.

2. I am feeling better. More with each day. I did manage to test three of the Weekend 5 already, but the last two I haven’t had time to make yet. Those I think I will roll over to this week’s and pick up 3 new recipes to round it out.

3. It feels like Fall out there now. My Roma tomato plants have bit the biscuit. I need to pull those out and clean up the backyard this weekend. This makes me sad. I wish I could grow tomatoes all year long outside. Ahh, Canada and your extreme weathers. :-\

Chickpeas 4 Ways from Everyday Food

chickpeas

I’m a huge fan of chickpeas. I love them all different ways, but I can only eat them heated up or room temperature. I don’t like them cold. But, mix them with whatever and I’ll eat it.

My mother first tried to introduce them to my mouth when I was a small kid. I don’t remember how old I was, but I remember be quite resistant based on the look of the odd beige balls she got from a tin. She was eating them straight from the can. I mean, I couldn’t even… I just stared at her in disbelief and disgust.

Growing up we were close to a couple of Lebanese families, and I was familiar enough with their food fare to know chickpeas was part of it. And that chickpeas were in hummus. To me, since I have never been able to stomach hummus, chickpeas were clearly the evil culprit. (It wasn’t, it has always been the sesame paste. Odd because I love sesame seeds and sesame oil, but not sesame paste. Still can’t eat it.)

In my defence, I was a kid, and every knows kids are dumb, mistrusting and ignorant when it comes to new foods. “No way, no how!” was my motto them. {forehead smack} Fast forward to when I was living on my own and trying new foods I could eat to help with a medical problem I have. I found chickpeas at the store, in a can, and I had just read they were tasty, easy to digest and good for our health. I was running out of food options, so I threw caution to the wind and bought the smallest can I could find.

I should have bought the biggest can. I loved them immediately when added to a lovely savoury tomato sauce that was stewed for a long while. Today I’ll eat them in the same kind of stew, but with Moroccan or Indian spices. Or in a lovely room temperature salad with red onions and chicken broth. Or on their own smashed up into a homemade hummus (sans sesame paste, of course). Oh, my… {drooling}

If you’ve never had chickpeas, or you have but you’d like more ideas to incorporate them into your weekly cooking rotation, Everyday Food has 4 ways to use and serve chickpeas. They all look so tasty and easy to prepare, I don’t know which one I want to make first!

Ha. If only my mother and childhood friends could read these words. 🙂

PS: I found my iFone. It was in place neither of us thought to look until today. I found it under a bookcase. My theory is it slid off the leather work chair, fell between the seat and back rest, hit the plush carpet on the smooth plastic casing side, and then slid under the metal bookcase where it was so dark, I had to get down on all fours to spot it. Poor baby didn’t even turn on from lack of battery juice. 🙁 Oh, well. It’s safe and sound now, and that’s all that matters, right?

iPhone Update

mia

Still. Our house is only 1100 square feet, for dog’s sake!!

{sigh}

I don’t use it as a phone, only as a FB/Twitter/Pinterest hub. I have a laptop, but that leaves me stuck at the desk since the battery is dying. I really love my mobility.

Sinus Infection Giveaway

 

oprah

I’m sick. Really sick. Too sick to be around food. None of the Weekend 5 is done, nor will it be before tonight at midnight, and I will probably need to take time off work to recoup. So, until I get better during the week, this week’s Weekend 5 will stay up and I will post the results when I can. It may even get rolled over as next week’s Weekend 5.

Yup, I’m that sick. Sinus infections are hell. Especially when they come with nasty coughs that make me pass out from straining too hard to catch my breath.

Worst part? I think I gave it to the husband before I realised I was this sick. Oops!

Oh, and I somehow managed to lose my cellphone while doing laundry yesterday. We’ve looked everywhere in this house, and it’s disappeared. Like magic, but way more vexing.

Weekend 5 – Sept 13/13

MichaelOoooh, it’s Friday the 13th. Are you superstitious? I’m not, but I always support those who are, because I want to feel a part of something. I have a sad little life like that. 😉

So, work is work. We’re gelling together as a team nicely after four weeks, which is good because the large crowds haven’t died down. At all. It’s kinda scary when you look up.

burnWhat’s new, you ask? Well, I managed to burn my hand at work while on a break yesterday. I was trying to pour hot water from the dispenser into my tea cup when I misjudged where the invisible internal spout was on this newer dispenser machine (on older models, the spout hangs down so it’s visible and you don’t have to guess) and the scalding water dropped down on my hand instead of down into my waiting cup that was positioned about two inches away. Oops. Imagine my surprise. It doesn’t look so bad now, and it only hurts in the small area that got hit the longest which is where I have a bit of bruising and swelling.

I figure the burn will all be healed by Sunday or Monday – just in time to do it all over again? 😉 The good news is this will NOT affect my Weekend 5 list. Woot. So, here we go:

SesameChickKebabs1. Sesame Chicken Kebabs: These will be done on Sunday since I have not one lick of chicken in the house right now. We’re planning a Costco run on Sunday AM to grab more. I really like the idea of ground chicken on sticks rolled in sesame seeds for some strange reason. I’m weird like that. Bonus: I’m thrilled to find another food blogger with the Brachydactyly Type D (cosmetic) gene mutation in his or her thumb(s) like I have. I wonder if this person is a member of the Facebook group? Or, perhaps s/he isn’t even aware his or her thumbs are different from others and is somewhat loved and is considered special by the others in our small circle??

alfredo-12. Healthy Fettucine Alfredo: I don’t use Alfredo sauce much because I usually don’t like the taste of commercial white sauces. They’re… caulky. Also, I don’t think they’re as heart smart or calorie friendly as basic tomato sauce. And truth be told, I much prefer a lovely basil pesto, but the husband won’t have anything to do with pesto. He’s anti-pesto. Have you ever heard of anything so silly? Anyway, the use of a vegetable to make this sauce has me intrigued enough to try it. I wonder if the husband will suspect?

caramel peanut butter filled brown butter oatmeal cookies3. Caramel & Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies: For brevity, I condensed the name of this blogger’s cookie. I don’t have all day for a name that long, y’know? 😉 (That sounds mean, doesn’t it?) These look great. Again, this will be for the inlaws more than for us. The husband isn’t big on caramel anything, but he might try one or two if he’s curious enough because he does adore his peanut butter so. And I really adore Fall themed oatmeal cookies. Win-win.

Tomato-Herb-Bread-10-495x4944. Fresh Tomato & Herb Bread: I’m thinking this will make a lovely companion to any soup or stew as the cold weather cranks up in the next few months. I’m putting it on today’s list in September because I want time to test this recipe and make a few batches to bake up and freeze so I don’t have to worry about wanting a few slices with dinner randomly at a moment’s notice. My mouth is watering just thinking about how it’s going to taste.

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Roll-Ups 0435. Cinnamon Cream Cheese Roll-ups: Now this is solely for the husband. Everything about it has his name written all over it. From the bread (check), to the cinnamon (check and check) to the filling (swoon), he will be pleased. Definitely!

Weekend 5 Recap

Frittata&GrBeanFries I decided to make the green beans for dinner on Friday night since I had the day off and lots of time to work on them, but as a side to the frittata. The frittata was the main attraction. I loved it. So tasty. I recommend this recipe.

The beans, however, were… ok. I liked the taste of them enough, but my gripe is with the amount of work that goes into deep frying them. I’m not a fan of deep frying at home. I really have to be into the food going into the hot oil to set this up and babysit it at the stove top. Perhaps it’s something you’re into, but not me. And the batter fought with me, so it was frustrating. I’ll give this one a pass, but if you’re interested and don’t mind the labour intensive work, go for it.

SpagBunsTonight for dinner, I decided to try my hand at making the noodle burger ‘buns’. It was really easy to make and fry up, but I made them too big and that lead to sloppy buns, lots of extra food and a plate of bits and bobs on the plate as I wiped my hands off over and over. The issue with making the spaghetti buns instead of the ramen noodles is that’s all we tasted – despite using jalapeno-lime aoili sauce, turkey burgers and lots of roasted peppers.

Spagbun-8SpagBun-7

BakedApples-3My SIL’s birthday is on Tuesday, so I baked up the apples I bought the other day. I left the skins off because she doesn’t like them, and I left out the pecans because she’s allergic to nuts, but other than that, it’s the same dish. The recipe was quite straightforward and easy to throw together quickly and to dress up any way you like once it comes out of the oven.

 

BakedApples-2I topped ours with fresh whipped cream and drizzles of homemade caramel sauce. Everyone liked the taste and textures, but the apples themselves were slippery and hard to cut with a spoon alone, so serve this dessert with a fork and knife. I’m recommending this as a lovely, simple apple dessert, perfect for the fall and last minute bakes.

I made the salt, but I have yet to use it, so I’ll let you know how that turns out another time.

 

 

Weekend 5 – Sept 6/13

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Wow, it’s been so long. I’m sorry. I have two jobs now, and this week marked the end of training on the second one, and my schedule during the week finally stabilized, so I am back! Let’s do this, kids.

I have a few things that caught my eye that I’ve been waiting all week to make. Hopefully that husband, and all of you, will enjoy my picks and decide to give them a whirl in your own kitchens this weekend

Beans1. Copy Cat TGIF’s Green Bean Fries: I have some beans I want to use up before they go bad, and before the recycle guys pick up our green bin contents (the ends of the beans) in the morning, so I’m going to make a batch of these to go with tonight’s dinner efforts. (See #2.)

 

 

 

Frittata2. Zucchini-Tomato Frittata: I have very limited energy after a long week at work. Coincidentally, I also have eggs and tomatoes in my fridge that are set to expire very soon, so this easy dinner idea is a great use of materials and the meager cooking effort I’m willing to put forth tonight. Ugh.
pastaburger

 

 

3. Spaghetti Bun Burger: Ever since Jay from @TheAimlessCook vlogged his version of the ramen noodle burger ‘bun’, I have been trying to decide if I want to give this a go. I’m not a big fan of ramen noodles but I bought some packets nonetheless the other day, so this weekend seems like a great time to try out his method. And in the future, I can alway sub out the ramen for homemade spaghetti noodles if I end up liking the texture. I may not. We’ll see.

 

seasoned-salt4. Seasoned Salt: Ever since I started using liquid smoke, I have been thinking about smoked salt. I have imagined all the various uses to justify baking salt with liquid smoke. It’s going to happen. This weekend. Perfectly timed for Fall cooking, of course. 🙂

 

BakedApples
5. Baked Apples: Bought some love apples today because they were pretty, and on sale. I have been going back and forth for a few hours, pouring over my Pinterest board, before finally setting on baked apples. It seemed like the right dessert to ease us into that kind of baking. And I know my husband loves this dish, so there’s that…