Posts Tagged ‘Recipe’


T’is the season that pumpkins are everywhere!! I’m not complaining as I adore pumpkin pie but didn’t want to go thru the process of making crust. Know what I mean? So I went online (for a change) to see what other options are out there and naturally I was inspired.

I bought a can of Pure Pumpkin and made two recipes with it and still have some left!!

pumpkin pie can

Recipe #1…Pumpkin Pudding (for the original recipe please click on This recipe is super easy and only required 6 tablespoons of sugar. #loveit.


6 tablespoons of sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 3/4 cups 1% low-fat milk
1 large egg
1/2 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Cooking spray
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (I left this out)
Dash of salt
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
 1. Combine 6 tablespoons sugar and 2 tablespoons cornstarch in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Combine milk and egg, stirring well with a whisk. Gradually add milk mixture to sugar mixture, stirring constantly, and bring to a boil. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

2. Combine pumpkin and the next 4 ingredients (through ground nutmeg) in a bowl, stirring well. Slowly add pumpkin mixture to milk mixture, whisking constantly. Place pan over low heat, and cook for 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring constantly (do not boil). Divide pudding evenly among 4 dessert bowls, and cover surface of pudding with plastic wrap. Chill.

4. Place cream in a bowl. Beat with a mixer at high speed until stiff peaks form. Top each serving with 2 tablespoons whipped cream and about 1 tablespoon nuts. (I omitted the nuts and simply sprinkled it with some whip cream).

FINAL RESULT pumpkin pudding

Recipe #2….Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread OR Muffins (taken from Sally’s Baking Addiction). I have used her recipes before and will continue to use her recipes! She always has some little tip that will make a difference ie. the addition of orange juice.


  • 1 and 3/4 cups (220g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg1
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves1
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (340g) pumpkin puree (canned or fresh)
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil, canola oil, or melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) orange juice
  • 2/3 cup (120g) semi-sweet chocolate chips2


  1. Adjust the oven rack to the lower third position and preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Lowering the oven rack prevents the top of your bread from browning too much too soon. Spray a 9×5 inch loaf pan with non-stick spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt together until combined. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, granulated sugar, and brown sugar together until combined. Whisk in the pumpkin, oil, and orange juice. Pour these wet ingredients into the dry ingredients (follow this step makes a difference) and gently mix together using a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon. There will be a few lumps. Do not overmix. Gently fold in the chocolate chips.
  3. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 60-65 minutes, making sure to loosely cover the bread with aluminum foil halfway through to prevent the top from getting too brown. The bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean with only a few small moist crumbs. This may be before or after 60-65 minutes depending on your oven, so begin checking every 5 minutes at the 55 minute mark or so. (my muffins took about 20 minutes to bake)
  4. Allow the bread to cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before removing and slicing. The bread will stay fresh in an airtight container (it tastes better on day 2!) at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 10 days. But it won’t last that long.
  5. Make ahead tip: Baked bread can be frozen up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.

Additional Notes:

  1. You can use 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice instead of these spices.
  2. Try using milk chocolate, white chocolate, dark chocolate, or even pecans/walnuts instead of the semi-sweet chocolate chips


pumpkin muffins



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I think I hosted a brunch three times in six weeks. But thanks to Pinterest I didn’t serve the same thing over and over again. All I did was punch in the word “BRUNCH” and a ton of photos came up which provided just the right amount of inspiration.

The last brunch I made consisted of: Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries, Crustless Quiche, Baked Cinnamon French Toast, Baked Granola Cups, and a cheese platter. Needless to say, no one left hungry!

brunch - cheeseplatter

Plus, one of my guests brought this DELICIOUS baked brie.

brunch - brie

Here’s one of the recipes that I found on Pinterest and was an instant hit with my guests:

CHEESECAKE STUFFED STRAWBERRIES (original recipe can be found on


A container of strawberries

6 tablespoons of soft cream cheese ( a little goes a long way)

1 tsp of vanilla

1 or 2 graham crackers that I smashed into little crumbs!! (again – a little goes a long way)


1. Using a sharp knife, dig a cavity into the top of the strawberry.

2. Using a sharp knife, also take off the bottom of the strawberry so it stands up nice and pretty

3. Mix the cream cheese and the vanilla

4. Carefully spoon the cream cheese mixture into the cavity of the strawberry.

6. Sprinkle the graham cracker on top.


brunch - strawberrycheesecake

Happy Cooking!!






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Breakfast Ideas!

Meal planning is a challenge! I admit that often when I’m running on a treadmill, I’m thinking about what I will be serving for dinner or making for lunch.

In particular I find breakfast can be challenging. Mostly cause I’m always running late!!

In fact, according to a recent survey from the Loblaws and President’s Choice® teams, 68 per cent of Canadian parents have less than 10 minutes to make their child’s breakfast on a weekday.

So here’s a suggestion, make this treat THE NIGHT before. Just like you might make lunches the night before too.

With just a few ingredients I discovered a fabulous breakfast idea:

Baked Granola Cups (taken from


  • 1/4 cup PC® applesauce or mashed banana (I used both)
  • 1/4 cup agave or honey
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • yogurt

cups - ingredients


Grease a muffin tin or mini muffin tin, and set aside.

Whisk together the first three ingredients in a bowl.

In a separate bowl, stir together all remaining ingredients.

Combine the bowls, stirring until evenly mixed.

Portion the batter into the muffin cups, pressing up the sides. Put the muffin tray in the fridge for at least an hour.

Then preheat the oven to 330 F. Take the muffin tin out and press the sides very firmly again. Bake granola cups 12 minutes, take out and press the sides into the muffin tins again with a spoon. To prevent crumbling, let sit 20 minutes before attempting to remove from the tins. (an important step – TRUST ME). These can also be frozen and thawed, if desired.

cups - mashitup

Final Result!!

cups - final

Then take out your favorite yogurt, add some fruit and bingo – you have yourself a tasty and pretty healthy breakfast.  Seeing as I’m always late there’s a good chance I will be eating this in the car! As you can see from this stat, I’m one of the 28%!!

    • Twenty-eight per cent even said that they eat on the go (stop at fast food restaurant, ate the meal in the car, etc.) to ensure their children have a proper meal.

If you are looking for more great recipe ideas, please click here.  Loblaws and President’s Choice have put together  some delicious and nutritious recipes Canadian parents can cook in the time they actually have.

Disclosure: I was compensated for this post, however all opinions are my own

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I was tired of my standard salmon recipes, so I did some research on the internet and found a new recipe that appealed to me. I love how easy it is to find a new recipe these days. Long gone are the days where I use to sit at the kitchen table sifting thru 6 cookbooks. (or more)

The recipe only included a few ingredients and sure enough..I had most of them in my fridge and pantry.

salmon - ingredients

Here’s the official recipe for Garlic Panko Salmon (from www.primaverakitchen.comI used half of the recipe (errr..the ingredients) and then used my own method. Keep reading!!

  • For the Salmon
  • 518g salmon fillets (I bought a big slab of salmon from Costco)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of Dijon
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • For the Garlic Panko
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4-6 cloves garlic, minced, depending on how garlicky you like it
  • ¾ cup panko crumbs
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon parsley, chopped (I used more…lots more)
  • Sea salt and fresh ground pepper
Instructions (according to momwhoruns!)
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F degrees.
  2. Spread the dijon mustard and honey onto the salmon.

salmon - fish

3. In my Cuisinart Food Processor – I whizzed up the parsley, lemon, garlic and panko bread crumbs.


4. Spread this mixture over the salmon

salmon - final5. Bake for 30-40 minutes (depending on the size of your salmon)

6. Serve Warm!

Happy Cooking.



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I had the opportunity to go on a tour with Foodies on Foot and visit an asparagus farm as well as a lavender farm! I don’t often get the chance to visit a farm but when the opportunity presents itself …I jump at the chance.

The asparagus farm was indeed a learning experience. I had no idea that asparagus grew like this. (see bottom left photo)

asparagus - farm

At the end of the day, we were given 11 pounds of asparagus. For about a week, I was pretty busy making asparagus soup, roasted asparagus, steamed asparagus etc.

I also made this delicious Spring Asparagus Tart that I discovered online. In no time at all, I had a pretty nice looking meal.

Here’s the recipe courtesy of Morgan Hass for Food Network Kitchens:



1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed (a 9 1/2- by 9-inch sheet from a 17.3-ounce package)

1 cup mascarpone

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 large egg, beaten

1 lemon, zest finely grated (about 1 tablespoon)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives

1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon

1 pound pencil asparagus, woody bottoms trimmed off

1 tablespoon olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Lightly flour the work surface and roll out the puff pastry to a 9- by 12-inch even rectangle.  Transfer to the prepared baking sheet. I used PC Butter Puff Pastry and was really pleased with the results. This is now by “go-to” puff pastry of choice!

asparagus - puff

Combine the mascarpone, 1 1/4 teaspoons of the salt, the flour, egg and lemon zest, and then fold in the chives and tarragon.  (I didn’t have this spice handy ). Spread over the puff pastry, leaving a 3/4-inch border.

Toss the asparagus with the olive oil in a bowl. Lay half of the asparagus in a neat row across the surface of the tart so the tips meet the edge. Do the same in the opposite direction with the remaining asparagus. (the fancy part)

Season with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and some pepper. Bake until the border of the tart is deep golden and puffed and the top is lightly spotted golden brown, about 25 minutes. Let cool for 5 to 10 minutes and serve.


asparagus - tart

Serve this tart with a few salads and you are good to go!!

asparagus - salads

To find out more information about Foodies on Foot, please visit their website  or follow them on twitter @foodiesonfoot.


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I got tired of  making blueberry crisps, so I made a Blueberry Cobbler instead. (just like that) I searched online for a recipe and discovered that there’s LOTS of recipes out there….and they are all a little different!

After reading (err..scanning) thru many recipes I finally found one that suited my needs. This is code for …I had all the ingredients in the pantry/fridge.

It’s a winner. The blueberries become all goo-ey and the cobbler part was perfect.

Here’s the recipe:

Blueberry Cobbler (taken from


For the Blueberry Filling

6 cups of blueberries

1 cup of sugar (I used less)

2 teaspoons of grated lemon zest

3 tablespoons of all purpose flour

For the Buttery Biscuit Crumble Topping

1 cup plus 5 tablespoons of all purpose flour

6 tablespoons of sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder

1/4 teaspoon of salt

6 tablespoons of unsalted butter, chilled and cut into bits

1 large egg, slightly beaten

1 teaspoon of vanilla

1 tablespoon of sugar

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Lightly butter a pie plate, baking dish etc.

2. Prepare the blueberry filling: Place blueberries into the prepared baking dish. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and lemon zest. Add the flour and whisk until thoroughly combined. Sprinkle evenly over the berries and toss gently.


blueberry - filling

3. Prepare the buttery biscuit crumble: In a bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt until well combined. Using a pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles a course meal with small pea-sized pieces of butter.  In a small bowl, whisk the vanilla into the beaten egg. Gently toss the egg and vanilla into the flour mixture until moistened and the dough starts to hold together.

blueberry - crumble

4. Assemble the cobbler: Sprinkle the biscuit crumble evenly over the fruit filling. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon (if desired).

5. Bake for 40 minutes.

blueberry - final

**I promise that your kitchen is going to smell delicious and the blueberries will be bubbling away.

This recipe was so good that I’ve made this cobbler twice in one week.

Sadly I never have ice cream in my freezer but I bet this blueberry cobbler would be absolutely perfect with a scoop of ice cream!!

blueberry - plate

Happy Baking.


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I stumbled across this banana cake recipe online and it intrigued me for these two reasons:

a) You bake it at 275 degrees for 1 hour and 10 min.

banana cake - 275

b) You transfer the cake right from the oven into the freezer for 45 minutes.

So I tried it and it was SO good that I made it three times in one week. Not to mention I had these two compliments;

a) my mom said it tasted similar to the Sara Lee Banana Cake (that we use to eat decades ago)

b) my aunt actually tried it and then made the recipe the following week. She’s an amazing baker so this was a huge compliment!

Here’s the recipe for you to try (in your spare time ..of course)


  • 1.5 cups very ripe bananas (3 fresh bananas or 4 thawed, previously frozen bananas)
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  •  3/4 cup soft butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1.5 cups buttermilk (OR milk soured with one tbsp vinegar or lemon juice….I used this method as I didn’t have buttermilk hanging around my fridge)


Pre-heat oven to 275º F, and grease and flour (or spray), a 9×13 cake pan.

Mash banana and mix with lemon juice and set aside.

In a med bowl, mix flour, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.

If you’re making your own buttermilk, combine milk and vinegar (or lemon juice) in a small bowl, and set aside.

banana cake - ingredients

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. ( I used a mixer for this step to make it light and fluffy)
Beat in eggs, one at a time.  Stir in vanilla.

Beat in flour mixture alternately with buttermilk.

Stir in bananas.

Pour into greased/floured (or sprayed) cake pan and bake at 275º F for 1 hour and 10 mins (or until knife comes out clean).

banana cake - in pan


Immediately place in the freezer for 45 minutes. (if not completely cool upon removal from freezer, let cool further before icing).

No need to cover the cake, but you’ll want to place it on a thick, folded towel to protect items underneath.


banana cake - final

Cream Cheese Icining: (which as you can see from the photo I did’t make as I think it’s amazing on it’s own)

  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temp.
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3.5 cups icing sugar (also known as powdered sugar or confectioner’s sugar)
  1. Cream butter and cream cheese.
  2.  Beat in vanilla and icing sugar on low until combined, then high until smooth.

Note: This makes a ton of icing so you might want to halve the recipe.

Happy Baking!!



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Recently I’ve come across FOUR Fabulous Food Entrepreneurs on Twitter! Drum Roll please….


The owner of this company was tired of seeing only your typical pink and blue carnival candy floss. Instead, Lolas Cloud serves organic clouds of candy, produced with cane sugar and natural extracts. Flavours include coconut, mango, watermelon and more. #brilliant. Please follow them on twitter and instagram: @lolascloud and take a peek at their website too. 



ALL MINE CARAMEL began as many small home based business do…by accident. Shannon Hitchon, who has always been proficient at cooking and making her own recipes, decided to try her hand at making her own caramels. She began slow churning her now signature buttery caramel as Christmas gifts for family and friends one year. They were a hit and soon co-workers and neighbours began requesting treats of their own. All Mine Caramel was born. Now, 4 years later, her caramel treats have become a must have delicacy. What a great story, non? I was pleased to see that Shannon is also making caramel corn too.  Can’t wait to try the Cayenne Infused Caramel Corn,…seeing as I’m all about flavour!

Please follow them on Twitter: @AllMineCaramel. Here’s their website:



What is a Shotberry? Well, imagine a HUGE chocolate covered strawberry that’s customized with your favourite toppings and decorations and then paired with a shot of your favourite alcohol (or non alcoholic beverage). OMG – BRING IT ON.

shot2I simply adore this concept. For more information, please visit their website:, Twitter: @shotberrys416 Instagram: Shotberry

4. Walter Caesar and Kelvin Slush

I blogged about Kelvin Slush when I discovered them in  NEW YORK in 2011 (see blog post by clicking here). Then I was introduced to Walter All -Natural Craft Caesar last year (see blog post by clicking here. However what I didn’t know was that these two brilliant products involve the same business partners…Zack Silverman and Aaron Harowitz. Not to mention I discovered this fact randomly by visiting a booth at the recent Restaurant Show!!

For more information: and

Please note, that Walter Caesar has just launched a Royal Caesar mix which is now available at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel. With it’s smoky chipotle and cumin flavours…this cocktail will surely be a hit with guests.

walter2Clearly, you can tell that I’m in awe of the above mentioned food entrepreneurs who are making their dreams come true.

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Disclosure: In the past, I’ve been known to buy imperfect fruit and vegetables. Yes – I’m that woman lurking around the stand for over ripe bananas and slightly bruised apples. You see, I really like using them when I bake.

Now Loblaws has made this easy for me as they have recently introduced no name® Naturally Imperfect line of fruits and vegetables.. Starting with apples and potatoes, no name Naturally Imperfect produce costs up to 30 per cent less than traditional produce options found in store. You gotta love it!!

dapple - bag

Smaller misshapen produce that tastes great and is good for you, is now available at Real Canadian Superstore® and select no frills® locations in Ontario and select Maxi® stores in Quebec. Furthering its commitment to offer affordable, quality products to customers. YAY.

Please note that my bag contained smaller apples – not one was bruised – and they were delicious! Naturally I was excited to bake with them, so I pulled out my handy APPLE DAPPLE recipe that I’ve been making for years.  Notice where this recipe comes from? HOMEMAKERS! (see bottom of the recipe for proof). How funny is that?


APPLE DAPPLE CAKE (taken from HomeMakers)

1 cup sugar (I always use less)

6 tablespoons butter or margarine

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup of all purpose flavour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg (if you want)

2 cups of apples (of course, I used the Naturally Imperfect apples)..peeled and cored and cut up into pieces. I didn’t peel them but I think I will next time!!

dapple - apple


1. In a medium bowl, beat together sugar, butter, egg and vanilla until well combined.

2. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg.

3. Add dry ingredients to sugar mixture and stir until well combined.

4. Stir in Apples.

5. Lightly pat batter in a square baking pan.

6. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 40 minutes.


dapple - final

Happy Baking.

Disclosure: This was a compensated post however all opinions are my own

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On Sunday morning, I made a perfectly good lookin’ French Toast to serve to my daughter. However I was still staring at half a loaf of challah and then said to myself: “Vicky…now is the time to try that recipe for Individual French Toast Muffins that you saw on Pinterest 3 years ago!!”.

french toast - rebecca

Here’s the recipe that I used from the website: Two Peas and Their Pod


1 loaf French bread, cut or torn into 1/2 inch cubes  (I used half a loaf of a whole wheat challah)
2 1/2 cups milk
6 large eggs
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

For the Cinnamon Streusel Topping:

1/4 cup cold butter
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt

Butter and Maple Syrup, for serving, optional


1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon.

french toast - bread and eggs

2. Grease a 12 cup muffin tin. Add a handful of bread cubes to each muffin cup. Carefully pour egg and milk mixture evenly over each muffin tin. You may need to press down on the bread cubes after you pour a little mixture and then pour more. Pour slowly or you will have a mess. Cover the muffins with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or up to overnight. (I refrigerated it for 2 hours)

french toast - muffin

3. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. To make the cinnamon streusel, in a small bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt. Mix together with your hands, until you have a crumbly mixture. Remove the muffins from the refrigerator and sprinkle the muffins evenly with the streusel topping.

4. Bake for 25 minutes or until tops are golden brown. Let muffins cool for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and serve with butter and maple syrup, if desired.


How cute? I can’t wait to serve these at a brunch one day soon. I have a feeling they will be a hit!

french toast - final2

Happy Brunching!!




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