Sunday, 30 October 2016

Cheese making

I do believe that I have a new hobby, cheese-making.


I've been making mascarpone cheese out of necessity. You see my favourite desert calls for mascarpone cheese, which I used to find at my local grocery store. No more, its been discontinued. And I can't find it anywhere in the city. I know, the horror!  


Well, I discovered that it's easy peasy to make and cheap too. Which kind of makes me upset at the prices they were charging for a 475 gram container of mascarpone cheese at the grocery store. It is criminal! But I digress...

I found a recipe for mascarpone cheese in Barbara Ciletti's Making Great Cheese:  30 Simple Recipes from Cheddar to Chèvre.

My biggest challenge at making mascarpone cheese was trying to locate tartaric acid. Since there are no cheese-making supply business and cooking stores in the city don't carry tartaric acid, I thought I might be out of luck. I discovered along the tour of the city's many wine making supply stores that I can substitute citric acid for tartaric acid. And it worked! And at a fraction of the cost of store bought. I still can't believe how much I'm saving.  

So, now I that I have homemake mascarpone and homemade gluten-free lady-finger cookies, there will soon be Tiramisu.  

Good Eats!  

Sunday, 11 September 2016

Chicken Livers

We are lucky to have access to produce from Wildfire Farms and this year I was especially lucky to pick up chicken livers. Oh my goodness, they are delicious. It's easy to cook delicious food when you have access to good product.  


Chicken livers
Sweet onions
Brown mushrooms
Shiitake mushrooms
Dry Sherry
Montreal chicken spice

How about you?  Do you have a favourite farm that supplies you with your good eats?  

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Spiked Apple Crisp

Sometimes, things don't turn out as planned. The plan was to make gluten-free apple pies. I had a El Peto gluten, wheat, milk, soya, and corn free pie crust mix and apples from the parents' backyard. There was no stopping me until my wrists became sore after cutting a large bowl of apples and the thought of kneading and rolling out dough made me change my mind.  


Apple crisp for those times you're feeling too lazy to make apple pie. For the topping I mixed certified organic and gluten free rolled oats, almond flour, cinnamon, diced butter and drizzled with amaretto.  

Happy Eats!  


Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Raspberries


This summer has been hot with lots of rain and raspberries. A lot of work to pick these up but so worth the work. Now to decide what to make with these, Raspberry Lemonade for sure.  

Thursday, 14 July 2016

Blueberry, Peach & Apple Crisp

Nothing says summer to me more than a crisp and some watermelon lemonade. Today is too cool to enjoy a glass of lemonade but it is the perfect day to enjoy some blueberry, peach, and apple crisp.  


3 apples, peeled and sliced
3 peaches, sliced
1 cup blueberries

1/2 cup unsalted butter
5 tablespoons almond flour
1 tablespoon cinnamon
3/4 cup organic gluten-free oats
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup amaretto


Layer the fruit in a baking dish, apples, peaches and then blueberries.  Now make the topping, dice the butter, and mix with the next four ingredients. Layer on top of the fruit.  Drizzle the amaretto.  Bake in a 350º F oven until apples are the desired tenderness. I usually bake this for about 25 minutes but it depends on the type of apples you like to use.  

Happy Eats!  


Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Gluten-free Upside Down Pineapple Cake

I have to tell you that I struggled to make half decent gluten-free desserts when it became obvious that gluten was playing havoc on my body. Along the journey, I was gifted many gluten-free cookbooks and I even bought a few myself. There is only one that I guard and cherish. All of the recipes that I have made in this cookbook have been superior to any other versions found in other gluten free cookbooks.  


Seriously, I haven't had a fail recipe from this book and I can't say the same for the others. It is Gluten-Free Baking:  Delectable from-scratch sweet and savoury treats published under Cooking Light and authored by Robert Landolphi. You can pick up the book here. Or you can find the recipe here. But I will tell you that you really do want this book in your collection. If you search for "gluten free upside down pineapple cake + cooking light" you might be directed to this recipe. It is not the same one as in the cookbook I mentioned above. You seriously, have to try Robert Landolphi's version. It is that delicious and moist.  


I did throw in a few blueberries into the mix.  

Happy Eats!  




Saturday, 9 July 2016

Spicy Chicken Drum Sticks

Another favourite recipe found in Ana Ortins' Authentic Portuguese Cooking has to be her recipe for chicken wings. Except, I didn't make chicken wings. I used chicken drumsticks which I removed the skin (a lot of work but worth it) and chicken thighs.  


The chicken is marinaded for a few hours to overnight before being transferred to a baking dish. 


I couldn't resist cooking the chicken in the marinade, it is that good.  


And messy and oh so delicious.  


Thursday, 7 July 2016

Pork Chops

Sometimes I'm inspired by things found in the garden. Today, I picked up some fresh thyme and oregano to use with pork chops. And the excitement that the first tomato of the season is almost ready to pick inspired a fresh tomato sauce.  


Thinly sliced pork browned in a saucepan with olive oil and butter. Remove and set aside.  Add two large shallots roughly chopped, a tablespoon of minced garlic. Then add 3 cups of chopped tomatoes, 1/2 red bell pepper, a splash or two of red wine vinegar, a dash or three of Portuguese piri piri sauce, thyme, oregano, capers and add the pork chops back to the sauce. Simmer until done.  

Happy Eats!  


Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Salad de Polvo (Octopus Salad)

This is a perfect summer time dinner salad. The recipe for this dish came from Ana Ortins' latest cookbook Authentic Portuguese Cooking. I couldn't find a whole octopus and used baby octopus instead. It worked well but I didn't have enough octopus for the amount of onions called for in the recipe. Next time, I think I will substitute shallots for the onions.  


Oh and I added oregano to the dressing and served with arugula.  Yummy.  

Monday, 4 July 2016

Fish Tacos

I have to say that when I stumbled across Old Mill white corn tortillas at the grocery store on the weekend, I was pretty excited. I can't recall the last time I ate a tortilla or a wrap for that matter. And not only are they gluten-free, they're good too.   


I used Mahi-mahi for my fish that was marinaded with olive oil, cumin, oregano, chill powder, cilantro, and a 1/3 of a seeded hot pepper. This dish was inspired by the Fish Taco recipe I found here at Epicurious.com.  


Instead of the tomato salsa and Mexican crema suggested in the Epicurious recipe I went with a simple and delicious favourite, Mango salsa.


I'm so glad I didn't skip the red onions soaked in red wine vinegar. Oh my, love these!  


Now that I have found gluten free tortillas, that I like I'm sure I will be revisiting this recipe over the summer.  



Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Microwave Bowl Potholders

Don't you hate it when you microwave something and it is too hot to handle? Well, I'm all smitten over microwave bowl potholders. And no more burned finger tips.  


They're reversible.  


This one is made in a vintage camera print and rolls of film on the reverse sides.  


This one has healthy eating messages on this side.  


And ears of corn printed on the reverse side. They're made out of 100% cotton (quilting fabric weight), two layers of 100% natural cotton wrap and zap (trademark) batting, and 100% cotton thread. If you're interested in one of your very own, you can pick them up over at my Etsy shop.  

Happy and safe eating!  






Monday, 20 June 2016

Summer-time Crisp

Today marks the summer solstice, the longest day of the year and the start of crisp season. Now, I don't typically find peaches this early in the season and have been enjoying this little treat. This evening it was used in a summer-time crisp.

Along with peaches I threw in a few gala apple slices and organic blueberries. For the topping I mixed gluten-free organic whole oats, almond flour, Cloud 9 gluten-free all-purpose flour, brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon.  I usually drizzle amaretto onto of my crisps but today I thought to keep it simple. There is plenty of time for amaretto infused crisps this season.

Happy Eats!  


Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Bye-bye Mayo!

I picked up a copy of Ana Patuleia Ortins' latest cookbook Authentic Portuguese Cooking the other day and there are so many recipes in this book that I want to try. This evening for dinner I made Salada de Atum à Moda da Graciosa (Tuna Salad Graciosa Style). If you have the cookbook, the recipe is found on page 204.  


Oh my goodness, it is delicious! I'm never mixing mayo with tuna again.  

Happy Eats!  


Saturday, 12 March 2016

Lasagna

I usually make the Ooh-la-la-sagna recipe from The Looneyspoons Collection cookbook but today I just went with what I had on hand since I was missing a few key ingredients.   


Instead of making the centre layer with spinach, ricotta and parmesan cheese and egg I went with what vegetable I had in the fridge. 

3 medium onions roughly chopped
4 zucchinis
2 yellow peppers
large package of mushrooms
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons of sun-dried tomato oil


Toss and roast for 30 minutes in a 350º F oven.  Meanwhile, I worked on my meat sauce.  I removed the skins from fifteen hot Italian sausages, diced and cooked with one white onion. When meat is cooked add 

1 jar of Marinara sauce 
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar

Once is reaches a boil, reduce, and simmer for 20 minutes.  


Now comes the fun part. Start with a layer of meat sauce, then a layer of Le Veneziane Gluten-free Corn and Rice Lasagna noodles.  They are oven ready so no need to pre-cook these noodles. Top with more meat sauce, 1/2 of the roasted vegetables (I made enough for 2 trays of lasagna), mozzarella cheese, lasagna noodles, meat sauce and a final layer of cheese.  


Bake in a 350º F oven for 30 minutes. And then enjoy!