How To Cut and Peel an Avocado

How To Cut & Peel an AvocadoI was in the kitchen the other day getting ready to use an avocado as one of the ingredients for my portobello burger, when I fondly recalled the conversation I had with my son.  He wanted to know if there was an easy way to get the pit out of an avocado.  I hadn’t really given much thought about it as I’ve been using avocados for a number years (akin to breathing).   It’s funny the things we take for granted as being everyday knowledge.  It was like an aha! moment when I told him how easy it was.  For Jason and others out there who aren’t sure, here’s my step-by-step tutorial. Continue Reading →

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Portobello Mushroom Burger

portobello burgerBurger Week in Halifax, an annual event to help raise funds for Feed Nova Scotia, is winding down.  I was away last week and therefore wasn’t able to partake.  Because of this, I have had burger on the brain.  Initially I wanted a burger overflowing with toppings and condiments (read messy) but in the end meat wasn’t whetting my appetite.  Portobello mushroom to the culinary rescue!  Continue Reading →

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Mu Shu Pork

Mu Shu PorkMu Shu Pork is a Beijing dish and is typically served rolled in Mandarin pancakes but I chose to serve it as a side dish.  Dishes like this pull me back to our time spent in Asia.  For a western newcomer, the Asian culinary experience delights and at the same time shocks the senses.  I recall my first time in a wet market in Causeway Bay, Hong Kong (1999).  A wet market was, by far, the biggest eye opener for me and my memories of them are still vivid to this day. Continue Reading →

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Oats and Cranberry Bars

oats & cranberry barsA few posts ago Mr. S wanted me to make him his favorite ginger molasses cookies – I said I would but didn’t.  If I’m not in the mood to bake, I don’t even make an attempt.  I’ve had failures in the kitchen before when my mood was less than buoyant resulting in the meal tossed away and a freezer job to the rescue.  I recognize those moments, not with anguish or defeat, but knowing full well I’ll make it again when the pep-in-my-cooking-stride returns.  Continue Reading →

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Braised Eggs with Pork

braised eggs & porkEggs for dinner?  You betcha!  This dish gently cooks the eggs while sitting atop a glorious, well-seasoned ground pork surrounded with dollops of yogurt and pan-seared cherry tomatoes.  Braised eggs take center stage.  This recipe is slightly adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi.  In the past I’ve cooked eggs in a chunky tomato sauce, sliced chorizo sausage with local cheese curds and baked in the oven – that’s a weekend breakfast treat for us.  Continue Reading →

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Citrus Fruit Salad with Roasted Pecans

Citrus Fruit SaladWe had a glorious sun-filled weekend.  Today the morning started off with a grey sky and snow falling gently to the ground…the chunky snowflakes were pretty but more snow?  A total of 10cm (4-inches) fell with more forecasted on the way.  I’m usually more tolerant of our winters and I really don’t want to sound like a broken record, but for the love God, please stop snowing!  Continue Reading →

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How To Segment An Orange

how to segment an orangeHow do you eat an orange?  Do you peel it with your fingers or use a knife?  I do both depending on the thickness of the skin but when I want the orange to be the main attraction, segmenting it looks so professional and yet is easy to do.  Orange slices in a dish adds a splash of color and looks pretty.  To segment an orange all you need is a sharp knife and a firm orange.  Segmenting an orange or other citrus fruit is easy.  It can be a bit awkward the first time round, but after a couple tries, you’ll have the technique down pat. Continue Reading →

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Asian Inspired Beef Short Ribs

beef short ribsI never knew there were so many braised short rib recipes on the web and it seems a good portion are dedicated to slow cookers.  I eyed a package of two meaty-looking beef short ribs and couldn’t wait to get home and decide how to cook them.  I did not want a typical braise with wine and tomatoes.  Instead, I yearned for something more Asian-infused.  Ribs come in a few styles (English cut, flanken cut, kalbi cut) and the ones I chose resembled the kalbi (traditional Korean cut).   Koreans love their meat.  Continue Reading →

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Corned Beef and Cabbage

Corned Beef & CabbageNot sure what to make for dinner?  If you have a farmers’ market nearby, drop in and get inspired.  That’s what happened to me on Saturday.  Mr. S asked what’s for dinner and I said I wasn’t sure and hoped the market would be my source of inspiration.  Root vegetables seemed to be everywhere from the different stalls.  Some had packages containing carrots, potatoes, cabbage and turnip and were selling them as ingredients for a boiled dinner or what I call corned beef and cabbage.  I picked up my root vegetables from different vendors and the corned beef from Meadowbrook Meat Market.  Corned beef (the term corn refers to the coarse grains of salt used for curing) is the salting of the meat which is then submerged in a brine, refrigerated for 10 days, drained, rinsed off and placed in a large pot of water with root vegetables. Continue Reading →

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Pork Belly Buns

caramelized pork belly bunsIt’s Chinese New Year’s Eve today and tomorrow millions will usher in the new year of the Sheep/Goat.  Most Chinese have already cleaned their house (literally) where the cleaning helps to drive any bad luck away from the house and discarding anything old to make way for a new start.  The years we spent in Asia got us involved in some of the celebrations and to this day I still replenish our rice jar (for good luck) and clean house where we sort through clothing and other items to give to charity.  Continue Reading →

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