I just learned I have some new readers (Hi K and D!) and immediately felt guilty at how neglected this little blog has been. So I decided to take a quick photo and post the (very simple) recipe for my lunch today.
I needed a somewhat filling lunch today given our dinner plans. Today is C’s birthday and while I bravely offered to make him a chicken dish of his choice, he instead chose dinner at Swiss Chalet (kindly stating that he preferred to avoid the trauma). As you can imagine, finding a non-chicken dish at Swiss Chalet will prove to be a challenge. So I decided to make this healthy and tasty miso soup to tide me over until (and through) dinner.
Serves 1 big bowl
1.5 ounces soba noodles
3 tablespoons miso paste
2 green onions, thinly sliced greens and all
pinch of sea salt
pinch of dried chilies
Cook the soba noodles according package instructions, set aside.
Fill a saucepan with 3 cups of water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the miso paste with some of the boiled water (around 1/2 cup) until all the lumps are gone. Pour the miso mixture into the rest of the water, along with the noodles, spinach, green onions, salt and dried chilies.
Serve and enjoy.
Life has been busy busy busy lately. Like working from 8am to 9pm busy. On the odd occasion that I actually manage to cook or bake something, I’ve neglected to photograph or write about it. But I have made some pretty tasty things, so in order that the recipes are not lost in the depths of my google reader or woefully unorganized bookmarks, I’m going to be completely lazy and simply list them here…
- Goat cheese with pistachios and cranberries
(I made this ages ago when I had friends over for dinner. Looks impressive but is super simple and delicious)
- Protein Power Goddess Bowl
(A great packable lunch.)
- Jamie Oliver’s Perfect Roast Beef and Gravy
(I made this for a holiday dinner with friends and it was outstanding. The beef was cooked to perfection and the gravy might have been the best I’ve ever had, if I do say so myself)
- Black Bean and Butternut Squash Burritos
(These were delicious with lots of leftovers. To make it even easier, I used frozen cubed butternut squash.)
“I am an ice cream genius!” I actually uttered these words aloud (and then texted them to C) after licking this ice cream off the spatula. It really is that good. The perfect combination of mint and dark chocolate.
We are in the middle of a heat wave in Vancouver and nothing says cool like ice cream. I recently bought the ice cream maker attachment for my Kitchenaid stand mixer and saw a good looking recipe for mint chip ice cream. So I raided the big pot of mint on the balcony and got to work. While it may take you 2 nights to make this, it is worth every second. Plus most of the time is spent in refrigeration and freezing. Go out and buy an ice cream maker, plant some mint and make this ice cream!!
Mint Chip Ice Cream
Adapted from The Kitchn
Yield: About 8 cups
2 to 3 cups mint leaves (or as much as you can safely take from your mint plants) (I used English Mint which has a subtler mint flavour)
2 cups cream
2 cups homogenized milk
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla
6 ounces dark chocolate
Thoroughly wash the mint and pick the leaves from the stems. Roughly chop the leaves and pound with a large spoon in a bowl until they are bruised and smell “minty”.
Whisk the cream, milk, sugar and salt in a saucepan over medium heat. Once it begins to steam, add the mint and remove from the heat. Cover and let steep for 2 to 3 hours.
Strain the mint leaves from the cream mixture. Return the mixture to the saucepan and heat until scalding (just under a simmer).
Whisk the egg yolks in a small bowl. Temper the yolks by whisking in a bit of the cream mixture. Continue slowly adding the cream to the eggs until you have added about half the mixture (2 cups). Then pour it all back into the saucepan. Continue stirring until the mixture reaches 170F – 174F. Stir in the vanilla then remove from the heat.
Pour into a bowl and cover the surface directly with plastic wrap to prevent skin from forming. Refrigerate overnight.
Chop the chocolate into chunks and flakes. Set aside.
The next day pour the mixture into your ice cream maker (I use the Kitchenaid Stand Mixer Attachment Ice Cream maker). Add the chocolate halfway through the mixing, about after 10 minutes. Once the churning/freezing is complete, transfer the ice cream to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap under the lid touching the surface of the ice cream to prevent ice crystals from forming. Freeze for at least 4 hours before serving.
The success of the pepperoni pizza called for more adventures in pizza making. We had some leftover ham in the fridge from my mum, so we went for a recreation of the Panago Tropical Hawaiian that we used to eat on Friday nights with good beer and a Bond dvd. This may have been better – all it needed was some Lazenby and Lager!
Yield: 1 large (serves 4) or 2 small (serves 2) pizzas
¼ cup Barbeque sauce
½ to 1 cup baked ham, chopped into small pieces
1 (8 oz.) can pineapple chunks, drained
1 to 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 teaspoon dried chilies
Banana peppers (optional)
Bacon, cooked and finely chopped (optional)
See pizza dough recipe for instructions on making and rolling out the dough.
Preheat oven to 450F.
Spread the barbeque sauce over the crust in a thin layer (I use the back of a spoon).
Place the ham and pineapple over the sauce (and banana peppers and bacon, if using). You may not need all of the pineapple.
Sprinkle the cheese over the toppings until covered and sprinkle the chilies over top.
Place in the oven and bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, until the crust is browned and lightly blistered.
To Freeze: Prepare as above, but only bake it for 10 minutes to allow everything to bind together. Let cool, then place in a plastic freezer bag and freeze. When you are ready to eat the pizza, bake from frozen at 450F for 15 to 20 minutes.
For the last 3 years, C and I have thrown a Super Bowl Party. Last year, I planned the menu with “regionally appropriate” foods for each of the teams playing in the big game. I made Boston Baked Beans for the New England Patriots and C’s roommate made New York Cheesecake for the New York Giants. And of course, ribs! My slow-cooker ribs are the mainstay of our Super Bowl menu. This year, the Arizona Cardinals played the Pittsburgh Steelers and it was a little tougher to track down regional recipes. After much googling, I settled on jalapeno poppers for the Cardinals and kielbasa for the Steelers.
So this year’s Super Bowl Menu shaped up as follows:
- Jalapeno Poppers
- Heluva Good French Onion Dip with Chips
- Sausage with Dipping Sauce
- Buttermilk Biscuits
- Super Bowl Slow Cooker Ribs
Recipes to follow…