Sunday, January 27, 2013

january knitting

I was given some wool for Christmas to add to my growing stash of wool so a while ago I was searching for interesting things to make that wouldn't be too complicated for moi. And I came across this pattern at purl bee. And in my stash I found some grey wool and some varigated blue and white wool and started knitting. I was hoping that the boy would love it and he does. It was initially named Seymour but as we were practising for conversation he might have about it for his "montre et raconte" (show and tell) tomorrow, I learned the name has changed to Marky.

Marky the snake. This is quick and easy and fun to make for a boy in your life.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

southwestern potato salad

I found this recipe over at Everyone Loves Sandwiches in her year end favorites list. I was intrigued by the list of ingredients, all of which I had except for the third sweet potato. And when I was reading the recipe the idea to add farro to the salad lodged itself in my head and wouldn't leave. So that is how I made it. And when I make it again, I will add the farro again.

Southwestern Potato Salad (adapted from Everyone Loves Sandwiches)
2 yams, diced
1 T vegetable oil
1 T chili powder
1/2 t chili flakes (or cayenne)
1 T ground cumin
1 c frozen corn
1/4 c minced red onion
1 c black beans, cooked
1 c farro, cooked

1/4 c vegetable oil
juice of 2 limes
2 cloves garlic, minced
a splash of red wine vinegar (optional)
a dash paprika and celery salt
1/2 t ground cumin
pinch of salt & a good grind of black pepper
crumbled feta cheese

Preheat oven to 400F. In a large bowl, combine the diced yams with the oil, chili powder, cumin and chili flakes. Dump out evenly onto a prepared baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, add corn into the same bowl and toss to gather up any of the remaining spice & oil. Remove yams from oven and toss for even cooking, adding in the corn. Bake for another 15 minutes.

In a large serving bowl, add in the black beans, farro and red onion.

Combine the remaining ingredients into a small jar and shake until well mixed. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. Remove the corn and yams from the oven and add into the bean mixture. Pour over dressing and toss the salad well.

A couple of notes -I found the dressing made much more than we needed for the salad and it makes quite a lot. It served 2 of us for supper and we had 3 lunches with the leftovers.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

new supper challenge

In an effort to break out of my dinner rut, I took up the challenge Jenny issued over at Dinner, A love Story – to have 7 new things in 14 days. So how am I doing so far?

Not too badly.

I started off with a Southwestern Potato Salad I found over at Everyone Loves Sandwiches. I cut back on the sweet potato (I used to 2 instead of the 3 called for) and added a cup of cooked farro. We loved it.

Next up was caramelized cabbage, anchovy and breadcrumb pasta which was good and quick and not so new as to be jarring to our dinner palates.

Based on another suggestion over at DALS, I made sausage tacos another night and they went down very well. I served them with roasted pepper and onions with avocado instead of the called for spinach.

Saturday I served up Luisa’s meatballs from the freezer in a mushroom cream sauce, vaguely inspired by an article in this month’s Martha Stewart magazine.

Sunday night I made pork chops in a horseradish and apple cider glaze taken from Deb’s book Smitten Kitchen cookbook and served them up with a celery root puree of my own devising and a green salad. Another new favourite.

Also on Sunday I made a batch of Winter Soup with Butternut Squash and Cauliflower from Cookin’ Canuck which we had for supper with grilled cheese sandwiches on Thursday night.

And for the 7th dish, I ended up trying ChickenTeriyaki from David Lebovitz. I didn’t thicken the glaze as directed which was a mistake. Next time I’ll try baking the chicken under the broiler to simulate grilling, while basting with a thickened glaze.

This afternoon, I started some beef short ribs for tomorrow nights’ birthday supper for a certain boy who’s turning 7. He may not eat them but the rest of us will. Now I just have to settle on a cake recipe because that is a must.

Luisa’s meatballs (from the Wednesday Chef)
1 lb lean ground pork
1 lb lean ground beef
4 slices bread, crusts removed
milk to soak the bread
4 eggs
a grating of nutmeg
chopped parsley (optional)
salt and pepper

Tear the bread into little pieces, then soak them in the milk and squeeze them out. Add the bread to the meat and eggs in a mixing bowl. Mince up the parsley and add it to the bowl. Grate a bit of nutmeg into the bowl and add salt and pepper to the mixture. Then, using your hands, mix all of this together until it's a smooth, uniform mass. Cover the bowl with a plate or some plastic wrap and stick it in the fridge for a few hours. I used a 1 tsp scoop to make the meatballs, rounding them with my hands. I placed them on baking sheets and cooked each sheet for about 8 minutes, under the broiler of my oven. When they were cool, I popped them into freezer bags and into the freezer they went for future meals.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year and I hope that 2013 brings you health, happiness and lots of fun.

We started our year out sledding up on a local mountain - lovely in the sunshine.