Oven Roasted Haddock

We’re in the middle of moving so I apologize ahead of time that my posts will be sporadic for a while till we’re set up in the new place!!

I’m having to make quick but healthy meals since we’re only a week till moving day!  So tonight I prepared  frozen/thawed wild haddock fillets with a side salad (bought from Costco).  But…it’s the fish with home made tartar sauce we will focus on tonight!!

I thawed my fillets and put them in the fridge till I was ready to season it.

So here are the haddock fillets (always use wild fish…not farmed )after I spread them with what I call our home made garlic paste.  We always have a container of this in the fridge ready to spead on fish, chicken, put a dollop in your pasta sauce etc.  We use it spread on baguette topped with Parmesan cheese and toast it for garlic bread!!!

Then comes the seasoning….every time I go into HomeSense, Winners or Marshall’s I look for this spice

 

It’s the Gourmet Collection Chilli Lime…it’s the best spice blend I’ve ever had…I have 6 jars in my pantry with various expiration dates on them….I don’t know what I’ll do when I can’t get anymore…but for now I’m good till 2019 LOL!!!

Now you sprinkle spice all over the fish (or chicken).  The more you put the spicier it is….so if you’re moderate with it, it will be only the most deliscious thing you’ve ever tasted…if you like spice then it will be spicy disliscious!!!

 

Fish:

  1. how ever many fish fillets you need ( I used wild haddock fillets/ frozen and thawed)
  2. spread with the garlic paste shown below
  3. sprinkle with the chilli lime spice ( or your desired spice)
  4. Bake at 400 for about 8-10 minutes…you want your fish to be flaky and moist…not dry and overcooked.

Garlic Paste:

  1. 1 full bulb of garlic, peeled
  2. pinch of salt
  3. pinch of parsley
  4. 1 cup extra virgin olive oil

Place all the peeled garlic cloves from the whole bulb in a mini food processor and mince well.  Add salt, parsley and oil.  Blend well till all incorporated.  Place in an airtight container and place in the refrigerator.  It will set like soft butter…then it’s ready to use!!!  YUM!

I use it to toss veggies in it then sprinkle with fleur de sel.  In the salt isle at the grocery store.

Tarter Sauce:

  1. 3/4 cup of mayonnaise ( I used miracle whip)
  2. 1/4 of sweet pickle relish
  3. 2 Tbsp of finely chopped red onion
  4. 1 Tbsp of parsley
  5. 2 tsp of capers (drained and chopped a bit)

In a small bowl stir together the mayo, pickle relish, onion, parsley and if desired capers. ( I think they add to the flavour).  Cover and chill for an hour before serving.

Note: it keeps in the fridge for 7-10 days.

 

Pasta Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

Yummmmm……just tasted this salad and it’s..what can I say…just deliscious!!!  It’s a keeper!!

I saw this on Pinterest on a blog called Vikalinka….. and it looked so good…but now I know it is!

Can’t wait to impress my camping buddies!!! They will love this!!

Pasta Salad With Basil Vinaigrette:

  1. 2 1/2 cups small cherry multi coloured tomatoes
  2. 1 red and 1 yellow sweet pepper, chopped
  3. 1/4 cup black olives, chopped
  4. 1/4 cup green olives, chopped
  5. 3 Tbsp fresh chives, chopped
  6. 3 large cloves of garlic (cook with pasta and keep for vinaigrette)
  7. 2 1/4 cups of pasta, of your choice ( I used small rotini)

Basis Vinaigrette:

  1. 4 Tbsp of white balsamic vinegar
  2. 7 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  3. 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped

Directions:

  • cook pasta with garlic cloves in water till desired doneness
  • strain and rinse with cold water to stop cooking process, drain well
  • chopp pepper, olives, chives and tomatoes, add to drained pasta
  • in a jar add white balsamic vinegar, chopped fresh basil, chopped reserved garlic cloves and extra virgin olive oil.
  • Add all contents of vinaigrette to pasta salad…cover and refrigerate for about an hour before serving…all the flavours will blend!

 

Gluten Free Sour Cream Coffee Cake

Yesterday we were at our son’s house for snowshoeing and my birthday supper…dessert was the highlight of the meal…the best gluten free cake I’ve had.  My daughter in law cooks and bakes gluten free and she is an excellent cook…and this cake was deliscious and moist!

The recipe comes from Chef Buggsy Mate…yup..that’s his name! LOL

A wonderful recipe to have with a good cup of coffee!

Gluten Free Sour Cream Coffee Cake:

Streusel:

  1. 2/3 cup chopped pecans
  2. 2 1/2 cup of brown sugar
  3. 2 tsp ground cinnamon

Batter:

  1. 1 cup butter, softened
  2. 2 cups sugar
  3. 2 eggs
  4. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  5. 2 cups gluten free baking mix (check out mine that’s what was used)
  6. 1 1/2 tsp xanthate gum (add even if your mix has some)
  7. 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  8. 1/4 tsp baking soda
  9. 1/4 tsp salt ( I use Himalayan)
  10. 1 cup sour cream

Confectiner’s sugar for dusting!

Directions:

  • In a small bowl, combine the pecans, brown sugar and cinnamon; set aside
  • In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  • Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition
  • Beat in vanilla
  • Combine the flour mix, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with the sour cream
  • Pour half of the batter into a greased and floured 10″ bundt pan
  • Sprinkle with half of the streusel
  • GENTLY top with remaining batter…just by dollops..then remaining streusel
  • Bake at 350 for 45 – 50 minutes….might take longer! Check with a toothpick till it comes out clean!

Enjoy!

Chilli

Cool weather is still hanging on so I thought I’d make a large batch of chilli with lots of cut up veggies.  Going to our sons for a last snowshoe treck  out back on their property.  Now to pick up a fresh loaf of bread..it smells wonderful in the kitchen!!

This recipe will feed about 10…can be reduced in half easily.

Chilli:

  1. 2 lbs of lean ground beef
  2. salt & pepper
  3. 2 Club House envelopes of Chilli blend (envelope is red)
  4. 3 small onion, chopped
  5. 5-6 ribs of celery, chopped
  6. 5 rainbow carrots, chopped (they are multi colour)
  7. coloured sweet peppers 4 large or equivalent of smaller
  8. 2 large cans of tomatoes, squashed with your hands
  9. 2 large Hunt’s tomato sauce
  10. tomato past (in a tube)
  11. 2 cans of kidney beans
  12. 1 can 5 bean mix
  13. 2 cans of pork & beans

Directions:

  • brown ground beef…drain fat
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • sprinkle 2 envelopes of Chilli mix over beef
  • add tomatoes, tomatoe sauce , beans,
  • I add a bit of tomato past (in a tube)
  • add cut up veggies
  • bring to a simmer until cooked
  • I usually add extra chilli powder…..optional

Outrageous Brownie

Happy St-Patrick’s Day!!!

Today is my birthday…..I officially am a senior today!  Yes 65! On the bright side I will receive my first “old age cheque” LOL! But enough with that!!!

I had to post my favourite of all time….something chocolate!!! This is the most decadent chocolate brownie I have ever had…and I’ve had a few in 65 years!

This recipe belongs to “The Barefoot Contessa”…I came across it quite a few years ago and have never found a better one!!!

It’s a large batch brownie….you will probably get 4 dz. cupcakes or 2 doz cupcakes and a 9×13 shallow pan.

Of course as you see in the photos above I frost mine with my favourite chocolate frosting to kind of bring it over the top!!!

 

 

Outrageous Brownie:

  1. 1 lb. of butter
  2. 1 lb + 12 ounces of semi sweet chocolate (divided)
  3. 6 ounces of unsweetened chocolate
  4. 7 large eggs
  5. 3 Tbsp instant coffee (you can use instant espresso powder)
  6. 2 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
  7. 2 1/4 cups of sugar
  8. 1 1/4 cup of flour (divided)
  9. 1 Tbsp baking powder
  10. 1 tsp salt
  11. 3 cups of chopped walnuts (optional)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven t0 350
  • Line your cupcake tins or butter & spray a large cookie sheet
  • Melt the butter, 1 lb of chocolate chips &  the unsweetened chocolate ( I do it in a glass bowl over a bit of hot water) Don’t let the chocolate boil!!!
  • Allow to cool slightly.
  • In a large bowl, stir (do not beat) together eggs, coffee granules, vanilla and sugar
  • Stir in the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture stirring while you do so the eggs don’t cook.
  • In a medium bowl, sift together 1 cup of flour, the baking powder and salt
  • Add to cooled chocolate mixture
  • Toss chopped walnuts in the 1/4 cup of flour
  • Add to brownie mixture
  • Pour into desired pan (if using a sheet pan, pour all the batter MINUS enough to make 4 cupcakes…otherwise it will spill over.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes
  • Do Not OverBake!!!  A brownie should feel soft to the touch but set.  Overcooking will result in a dry brownie

Note: Frost with your favourite chocolate buttercream….I sometimes use a bit of milk and coffee in my buttercream!!!

Note:  I will post my chocolate buttercream later as I’m off to an appointment!!!

 

Gluten Free Bread- So Moist!

It took me a couple of tries before I got this down pat..but when I finally got it ….it was great!!!!

I also took the same recipe and made a raisin/cranberry bread…that too turned out great!!! See below

For this I used my Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer…you could probably do it with a hand mixer if you have to.  I would try it.

I used the long narrow bread pans instead of the 5×9.

I greased them and just before putting the batter in I sprayed them.  Gluten free tends to stick more so I didn’t want to take a chance.

GF Sandwich Bread

  1. 1 1/2 cups of warm water (warmer than room temperature)
  2. 1 1/2 tsp of instant yeast
  3. 2 Tbsp white sugar
  4. 3 cups of gluten free all purpose flour blend ( see mine)
  5. 1 1/2 tsp of Xanthan Gum ( 1 Tbsp if blend doesn’t have any)
  6. 1 tsp salt
  7. 1 tsp white vinegar
  8. 3 egg whites
  9. 2 Tbsp oil ( I use sunflower)
  10. 2 Tbsp water

Directions:

  • dissolve yeast and sugar in water in 2 cup measuring cup. Let stand  until bubbly (should reach 2 cup mark) takes about 10 minutes
  • meanwhile, combine flour, xantham gum, and salt in mixer bowl
  • whisk until thoroughly combined.
  • Add yeast mixture, vinegar, egg whites and oil to flour mixture
  • mix on medium/high for 3-4 minutes. It should be the consistency of a thick batter which is too thick to pour but not thick enough to form a ball.
  • Generously grease bottom and sides of 1 loaf pan…just before putting batter in spray with nonstick spray
  • spread batter in loaf pan…using a small spatula peak the center instead of spreading flat
  • let rise in a warm place for close to an hour – or. – till the batter reaches 1/4 inch from the edge of the pan
  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Bake for about 50 minutes…the top will get VERY GOLDEN BROWN! But not burned!
  • let cool for about 20-30 minutes in pan before removing
  • BEST ENJOYED FRESH….freeze the rest

Note:  I cut my loaf in sections then froze them in freezer bags.

Raisin & Cranberry Bread:

  1. same recipe and directions as above with a few changes
  2. same amount of brown sugar instead of white sugar
  3. 2 tsp of cider vinegar instead of 1 tsp white vinegar
  4. add 2 tsp of cinnamon to your dry ingredients
  5. add a handful of raisins and one handful of dried cranberries at the end to blend…..after your 3-4 minute mixing.
  6. before putting in the over sprinkle top with raw sugar…it gives the loaf a knarly rustic look

 

Thyme Rainbow Carrots

I just love these carrots..they are so colourful.  I use them as a side, in a pot roast and also grated for a coleslaw.

There is a purple carrot…you need to cook that one separately or everything will turn purple…add it at the end.

Thyme Rainbow Carrots

  1. rainbow carrots (regular if you can’t find rainbow)
  2. yellow onion
  3. thyme

Directions

  • peal and slice carrots how you want them
  • slice onion in medium slices
  • put some olive oil and butter in a shallow frying pan and cook onion with salt and pepper till softened and translucent…NOT CARAMALIZED!  Set aside
  • boil or steam carrots till desired doneness..drain water
  • add a bit of butter to pan & carrots.  Add onions.  Add pepper and sprinkle lightly with thyme…not too much. Add a bit at a time…thyme can be overpowering of too much

 

 

Authentic Greek Salad

When my hubby and I were in Florida we frequented this mom and pop Greek Grille….the food was fabulous. He and his wife made his mother’s and aunts’ old Greek recipes.  This is how he made his Greek Salad.

This salad has no amounts….you need to make as much as you need. It’s very colourful and deliscious…So here goes.

Greek Salad

  • romaine lettuce
  • red onion…julienned
  • tomatoes…I used small tomatoes (multi coloured) slice in two
  • english cucumber
  • feta cheese (I’ll show a picture of the one I buy
  • olive oil
  • lemon
  • oregano
  • basil

Directions

  • wash and cut up romaine
  • julienne red onion
  • chop cucumber
  • cut tomatoes in two..place open side up and sprinkle with basil
  • cut up feta cheese
  • once everything is ready to go, place romaine in serving bowl and sprinkle with oregano
  • toss romaine with olive oil till leaves are covered
  • add tomatoes, onion, cucumber
  • now squeeze a half of a lemon to start…toss and taste…add as much lemon as you want
  • add salt and pepper
  • add feta

 

 

 

 

 

Boiled Icing

I thought since I had my aunt here recovering from minor surgery that I would finally get her to show me how to make boiled icing…there might be another name for it but we always knew it as “boiled icing.  ( it’s not the 7 minute icing)

My grandmother used to make this on a spiced cake…(which I will post later).  My grandmother was the most awesome cook and baker.  I remember as a little girl (growing up there) how I used to watch her make all kinds of fancy desserts and sandwiches for the church tea..but also for family gatherings.  She loved to fuss and make fancy things….my aunt says I must take after her because I always usually go over the top when I cook or bake.

My aunt and I had this long chat trying to figure out where my grandmother (her mother) had learned all her skills.  She was a very talented lady.  There was nothing she coudn’t do.  She was a tailor/seamstress.  She used to knit my grandfather very fine argyle socks…you would have never known they were homemade.  She sewed all my bridesmaid dresses.  She did cake piping in the 50’s…fancy cakes, all kinds of pies. Now I so regret not learning more from her.  So I’m trying to learn what I can from my aunt.

It’s so light and fluffy, not as sweet tasting as regular buttercream frosting….just enough sweetness….when it was ready I could have eaten the whole bowl with a spoon…Yummmmmmm!!!!!

You can also make it with white sugar (we used brown sugar for this one).   Who doesn’t like brown sugar….makes everything taste so much better!!!!!

Boiled Icing

  • 2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • pinch of salt
  • 4 egg whites
  1. Place first 3 ingredients in a small saucepan…tall enough so there’s room for it to boil.  Bring to boil.
  2. while you’re waiting for the sugar to boil, put 4 egg whites into the bowl of a mixer…use your whisk attachment.
  3. whisk egg whites till frothy…then stop
  4. once sugar begins a rolling boil and starts to rise, stir and lower heat to medium and time for 2 1/2 minutes….exactly..no longer, no less.
  5. continue to froth egg whites on med till sugar is ready to pour into it
  6. once sugar is ready, begin pouring into egg whites..pour, stop, pour stop till all sugar is poured into egg whites
  7. now whisk on high till stiff peaks form…it should get thick and fluffy.

Note:  when you’re pouring the hot sugar syrup into the egg whites some will splash on the side of the bowl…DO NOT SCRAPE IT DOWN….use the fluffy mixture only.  It will give you quite a bit of frosting.

SO DELISCIOUS you’ll never want to use anything else again.

Rosemary Cheddar Irish Soda Bread

You  can’t imagine how good this soda bread is!!!!! Big Sigh……licking my lips.  As you can see I got this recipe on Pinterest from Foodness Gracius…love the name!!!

I was making a small beef stew for supper and I thought this would go great with it….I WAS RIGHT!!!  I can see this bread going with so many things….endless!!! Toasted with cheese melted on it!  MMmmmmm!

I followed the recipe exactly….except…I didn’t knead it into a ball but left mine “rough”….next time I will listen! And do exactly!!!

Here is my bowl with my dry ingredients….you can see my 2 cups of buttermilk with the egg whisked into it on the left….and on the right the sliced bread still warm..

It was really easy to come together….I didn’t have fresh rosemary so I used dry…but less than what was asked for.  Dry herbs are always stronger than fresh.

Here is my bread out of the oven five minutes…..oh my…yummy goodness!!!!  It’s dark and crusty on the outside, but moist and so flavourful on the inside.

Rosemary Cheddar Irish Soda Bread

  • 4 cups unbleached flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp salt ( I used Himalayan)
  • 1/2 tsp cracked pepper
  • 3 Tbsp fresh chopped rosemary (I used 1 1/2 Tbsp of dried)
  • 2 cups of buttermilk
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 cups of sharp cheddar cheese ( I used only 2 cups..it was plenty)

 

  1. Heat oven to 425 F.  Lightly flour two 6 inch skillets
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, salt, pepper and rosemary
  3. Add the egg to the buttermilk and beat until well mixed
  4. Add the grated cheese to the flour mixture and lightly mix through
  5. Pour the buttermilk into the bowl and mix together using your fingers until it comes together
  6. Dump the dough out onto a flour dusted surface and knead the dough into a ball shape and divide in half
  7. Shape each half into a ball again and place each seam side down in a skillet
  8. Take a sharp serrated knife and cut and X on top of each bread
  9. Season top with course salt ( I used Fleur De Sel) and cracked pepper
  10. Bake for at east 35 minute

Note:  the bread will get very brown and crusty…it’s all good.  I baked mine close to 40 minutes

Enjoy!!

Lemon Cupcakes

What can I say about these lemon cupcakes…they are the lightest, yummiest cupcakes…you won’t be able to have just one….My granddaughter Tamara loves these so much she asked me to make her six dozens for her grade 8 graduation. She called me afterwards and said “grandma there is not one cupcake left”…she was laughing at how her friends had just gobbled them up. I got the recipe from a cupcake magazine I bought a few years ago and have kept it as a “favourite”

Whenever I make this they literally get inhaled…yup they are that good!! So make lots…they freeze very well.

 

 

Lemon Cupcakes:

  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 3/4 cups unbleached flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup limoncello (Italian lemon liqueur) or milk ( I prefer the limoncello)
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp finely shredded lemon peel
  1. Allow butter and eggs to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.  Meanwhile, line twenty 2 1/2 inch muffin cups with paper cups.  In a medium bowl stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  2. In a 2 cup glass measuring cup combine the 2/3 cup of milk with the limoncello; set aside.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 F.  In a large bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds.  Add sugar and lemon peel; beat until combined.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Alternately add flour mixture and milk mixture to butter mixture, beating on ow speed after each addition just until combined (don’t overbeat).
  4. Scoop batter into prepared tins (DON’T OVERFILL) they will overflow if you do. Only fill half way..trust me on this!
  5. Bake for about 18 minutes or until tops spring back when lightly touched.  Cool on wire racks.

Pucker Up Lemon Frosting:

  • Frosts 12 cupcakes
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3 3/4 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest of
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • couple of drops of lemon yellow food colouring…to brighten the frosting..Optional

  1. Combine butter, sugar and salt and beat till well combined
  2. Add lemon juice, zest and vanilla and continue to beat for another 3 minutes until creamy.

Enjoy!!!