Saturday, October 31, 2009

pizza party menu

Gudrin's smoked salmon, roasted red pepper, roasted artichoke & goat's cheese pizza
One night this week, Erin and Gudrin came over for a pizza party. What was on our menu? Take a wild guess! Pizza and wine. That's it. BTW, kudos to Erin for making the pizza dough between clients. :)
Erin's pizza: Extra virgin olive oil with a hint of garlic salt, sliced Bosc pear, crumbled blue cheese, a smattering of mozzarella and Parmesan

Gudrin's pizza: Smoked salmon, roasted red peppers, roasted artichokes, Mrs. Porter's homemade roasted tomato sauce, mozzarella, and goat's cheese

Jordana's pizza (which got stuck to the we couldn't really eat it): Sliced tomato, ricotta and Mrs. Porter's homemade roasted tomato sauce with a touch of pesto

I think we'll have another pizza party. My plan is to recreate my favourite pizza from Terra Cotta in Windsor. I like olive tapenade, spinach, eggplant, roasted red peppers, feta cheese and rosemary. Girls, will you come over again soon?

P.S. Lulu B Pinot Noir was also on the menu. It's a perfect pizza wine. Thanks to Gudrin for bring it along!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Jamie Oliver's Sweet Potato & Chorizo Soup

It's really starting to feel like fall; the days are short and crisp. Not surprisingly, the cooler weather makes a hearty soup that much more enticing.

Jamie Oliver's Sweet Potato and Chorizo soup was an absolute standing-ovation hit in my house (hubby and I were both standing and clapping!). It was easy to make and got better after a couple of days in the refrigerator like any good soup. Try it.

*Click on this link to see the recipe on Facebook.
*Check out Suzie the Foodie's blog to read and see someone else's attempt.
*Go to for a completely different sweet potato and chorizo soup.

Monday, October 19, 2009

la creuset...finally

During one of our recent visits to HomeSense, I put a La Creuset French Oven in our shopping cart. Hubby was stunned by the price tag. I was stunned too, because I knew we were saving a whack of money by purchasing a "second" (I think we saved about $100!).Well, this little French oven did not disappoint. Yesterday, I made a Bolegnese sauce and was thrilled to see how evenly everything was cooking. Nothing burned. Nothing got stuck to the bottom of the pot. Best of all, it made me happy to see the little red French Oven sitting on top of our stove!

yellow vegetables

When was the last time you went to the tomato capital of the world?

We were there for a wedding last Saturday. With two hours to kill between the ceremony and the reception, we took advantage of the opportunity to stop at a few farm stands. We bought some lovely yellow and orange tomatoes (likely the very last of the season), butternut squash, sugar pumpkins, and red peppers.

Two ideas for yellow-ish vegetables:

Yellow tomato bruschetta

Sweet potato fries

I was planning to make a carrot salad tonight but got distracted. Instead, I added some yellow tomatoes to our rockin' Indian open-faced sandwich. I was feeling a bit lazy, what can I say?

Send your ideas my way...I still need to use up the peppers and the sugar pumpkins.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

roasted chicken breasts with lemony bombay potatoes

How much do you love roast chicken? Interested in trying something Indian-inspired? Trust me, it's not too "weird" and it's weeknight simple.

Jamie Oliver's roasted chicken breast with lemony bombay potatoes only calls for ingredients that can be purchased at your local, small-town supermarket. I often quadruple the recipe and add extra veggies like sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts and/or cherry tomatoes.

Buy everything you need this weekend and plan to make this next week. Let me know what you think. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
P.S. We were lucky tonight to have some leftover Tomato, Coriander & Ginger soup from Terry the Firefighter's visit. It was the perfect appetizer. Thanks T!
P.P.S. This chicken recipe is from Jamie Oliver's Cook With Jamie. I blogged about it on last year. :)

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

canadian thanksgiving menu

Thank you Bonnie Stern. You are my favourite Canadian cookbook author and if you ever talked to me, you'd be my friend. (Even if you just talked to me on Twitter, we don't actually have to meet or anything.)

Hubby and I just moved into our new house (house is old, but it's new to us) and invited two couples over for Canadian Thanksgiving. Bonnie, you posted a Thanksgiving menu on the National Post website but I relied on your Essentials of Homecooking and Friday Night Dinner books to make most of our meal.

Marinated Goat Cheese

Mixed Greens with Walnut Dressing

Roast Turkey
~served with wild mushroom & leek stuffing and country mash~

Spiced Cranberry Port Sauce
Julie's Homemade Whipped Cream
~served with Julie's (read: Windsor's best bake) Homemade Pecan Pie and Pumpkin Loaf~
Now, if you're wondering what to do with the leftover turkey...I highly recommend making a turkey, brie, cranberry sauce sandwich. Get to it.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

pre-thanksgiving indian dinner menu

Terry the Firefighter and the MenuManiac
You may remember Terry the Firefighter from his guest post. Last night, we were lucky enough to have his expertise in our new professional kitchen. Luckily Terry the Firefighter, is a professional in more ways than one. Inspired by a recent trip to Vij's in Vancouver, this firefighter came up with the perfect Indian menu. He gives total and complete credit to Vikram Vij.
Ginger-Lemon Drink
Tomato, Coriander and Ginger Soup
Garam Masala-Sauteed Portobello Mushrooms in a Porcini Cream Curry
Marinated Lamb Popsicles with Fenugreek Cream Curry
Terry's tips when cooking from Elegant & Inspired Vij's Indian Cuisine:
  • Even if the recipe instructions go against your instincts, follow Vij's direction. It will not disappoint
  • Take advantage of the wine pairings that are included with each recipe

How groovy we got after this fantastic meal:

Friday, October 9, 2009

New York: ed's lobster bar

Ed's lobster roll

Imagine shopping in SoHo with one of your closest friends. Then imagine stopping for lunch, to eat the most delectable sandwich on the face of the planet. Oooohhhh, and then imagine eating crispy french fries drenched in malted vinegar. Even if you're not in SoHo, run to Ed's Lobster Bar for lunch or dinner. Just make sure you keep shopping, I mean walking, to burn off the calories!

New York: craftbar

Marinated Olives, Marcona Almond
White Anchovy Bruschetta, Soft-Cooked Egg, Braised Leek

My mother-in-law introduced me to craftbar. The restaurant is about simple food with fresh ingredients and is located very close to Union Square. My friend Lauren and I ate at craftbar our first night in the city. We were exhausted, starving and completely indecisive...ended up sharing a number of vegetarian appetizers.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

New York: Otto

While on a recent trip to NYC, La Dauphine and I were craving pizza. I recalled that my friend Maria from Fresh Eats had recommended Mario Batali's Otto for a thin-crust pizza. Maria rocks.

La Dauphine and I waited almost 30 minutes for our 10 p.m. reservation and then the service wasn't great (or even good). Luckily, the food made up for it.

Fennel, apple, walnut salad
BEST PIZZA OF MY LIFE: tomato sauce, mozzarella, chunks of prosciutto, Parmesan and balsamic reduction (un-f*cking real!)
Final recommendation: make a reservation...but prepare to wait.

roasted cauliflower soup

Love this roasted cauliflower soup because it's simple, healthy and reliable. The recipe is really from Bonnie Stern but I modify slightly.

Yellow cauliflower is fun.

My mother-in-law gave me this little green bag (of thyme!)

Prepare the cauliflower by putting chunks on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet and drizzling with extra virgin olive oil, some thyme, kosher salt, freshly ground pepper.

Roast cauliflower for 30-40 minutes. Then add to 1 litre of chicken or vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Puree and reheat if necessary. Serve topped with sliced green onion.

Bonnie recommends serving with some crumbled Gorgonzola and chopped walnuts. Sounds good to me!

weeks ago, it was break fast

St. Urbain bagel with Western cream cheese and wild smoked salmon

Weeks ago, we broke the fast. We actually didn't fast but we did eat less. G-d knows, so I can admit it online too!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

the big apple

Sorry that I haven't been posting lately! We're moving and I'm heading to NYC for the weekend with La Dauphine. Planing to shop a lot and eat a lot, so expect some new material next week.