Chicken, Peach and Quinoa Salad

chicken, peach & quinoa saladAs much as I like cooking a whole chicken, I can’t seem pass by a grocery store rotisserie chicken without stopping to inhale its amazing aromas.  And, how is it they’re cheaper than buying a raw one?  I bought a 4 lb. rotisserie chicken for $7.99 whereas an uncooked 4 lb. one was nearly $11.00.  From what I can gather by nosing around the internet, a supermarket sells fresh ingredients before the best-before-date and anything after that gets chopped up and sold in a salad bar and the meat is cooked and sold hot (helps minimize food waste).   Continue Reading →

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Peach and Blueberry Crostata

peach and blueberry crostataIt’s peach season, along with other stone fruits, in Nova Scotia.  I, like many, look forward to this time of year when local produce hit the shelves of grocery stores and farmers’ markets.  It also signals the end of summer and even though the days are warm, daylight hours are beginning to shorten.  There’s nothing quite like taking a bite out of a fresh, juicy peach.  Picking ripe peaches isn’t difficult…choose ones that aren’t hard and blemish-free.  Keep in mind the sweetness of a peach does not increase after picking and fresh ones tend to spoil quickly so only pick what you can use within a few days.  Continue Reading →

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Planters Ridge – a Nova Scotia Winery

Planters Ridge wineryA little province in the east coast of Canada is carving out its niche in the world of wine.  You might think Nova Scotia’s climate is too cool to grow some of the most distinctive premium-quality grapes in North America but we do!  In the 1600′s, Nova Scotia was one of the first areas to cultivate grapes in North America.  Fast forward to 2012 and Tidal Bay – Nova Scotia’s premier white wine – was launched as the province’s first named appellation. Nova Scotia (44º 39′ N) has approximately the same latitude as Bordeaux, France (44°50′N 0°35′W).  Surrounded by 3 major bodies of water, our climate is primarily influenced by the sea making our winters colder than Bordeaux and it’s these bodies of water that help impact the terroir. Continue Reading →

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Fennel, Grapefruit and Feta Salad

fennel saladLast weekend we entertained our friends from New Brunswick.  It was a weekend getaway for Ralph and Michelle.  They arrived Thursday afternoon and for the next 48 hours it was full-on chatting, catching up, laughing, eating and drinking.  Because Michelle and I are both foodies and write our own food blogs, my goal was to make the first evening together memorable, fun, casual, and taking as much time as was needed to fully enjoy each dish I brought out.   Michelle took photos (you may see them on her blog) as I prepped the food…I felt like celebrity chef! :) Continue Reading →

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Coconut Cream Pie

coconut cream pieIf you’ve ever been on a road trip, then you know truck stops and diners have the best food.  They also have the best desserts…usually.  The veneer of a truck stop or diner won’t lure you in on looks alone, but the food in my experience, has been really good.  And it has to be.  Truck drivers want a meal that reminds them of home when they’re on the road driving for long hours at a time.  It’s as close to home cooking as you’ll ever get, good value for money, open late at night, and there’s something wholesome about them.
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Fried Cauliflower Rice

fried cauliflower riceCauliflower rice?  Ok, well of course it isn’t rice but for those trying to cut back on carbohydrates, try this recipe.  Local cauliflower is now showing up in the grocery shops and boy do they look good!  Cauliflower rice has been hitting the cyber world for over a year now and all you have to do is google it to see how popular it has become.  Any way you dress it up, cauliflower rice is delicious even with simple ingredients such as butter, salt and pepper.

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Roasted Hakurei Turnips

Roasted Hakurei TurnipsI am and have been for a long time enamored with local farmers’ markets.  For those who don’t know me, I grew up in the country where my parents grew their own vegetables and later on had chickens and pigs (hobby farm, of sorts).  As much as I liked being able to walk over to the vegetable field (yep, it wasn’t a patch!) to pick or dig the veggies for the evening dinner, I did not like any of the work that went into growing and maintaining a vegetable garden.  I still don’t!

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Chanterelle Mushrooms with Pasta

chanterelles with pastaThe glorious golden child of the mushroom world, chanterelles, have a short growing cycle and are only available July through to September.  Their deep yellow color (think apricot), a trumpet-like shape, and hints of sweetness can be easily enjoyed simply by sautéing in butter and dressed with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.  I did not know this but chanterelle mushrooms are picked in the wild – which explains why they’re expensive – and are usually found growing around trees and shrubs.  But before you go out there looking for these golden beauties, take along a knowledgeable forager.  They’ll help you to identify the real deal and keep you from getting food poison if you happen to choose what you think ‘look’s like a chanterelle mushroom. Continue Reading →

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Yogurt Popsicles

yogurt popsiclesMr. S. enjoys eating yogurt for his mid morning snack but he realized that the ‘deal’ we got on buying 16 was nearing its expiry date.  He would have to devour 8 in the next two days!  We’re usually good at checking expiry dates but this one must have slipped through the cracks.  We had been to the grocery store where I eyed popsicles and it was there it donned on me how to solve the yogurt issue.  I had some star pop molds from when I made paletas. It was that simple and the yogurts were saved. Continue Reading →

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Roasted Butternut Squash and Couscous

roasted butternut squash and couscousIt’s been wet and foggy the past two days and as such has put me in the mood for vegetables I would usually cook in the cooler months.  That said, there’s absolutely no reason why squash shouldn’t be included in a summer dish.  When I think of the winter squash family, butternut always comes out on top.  It’s sweet to begin with but when roasted nothing beats the caramelized flavor of browned edges.   Butternut squash doesn’t really need doctoring but experimenting with different seasonings such as cumin, allspice, anchovies, cinnamon, nutmeg, thyme, truffle oil, rosemary, sage, lemon juice, and so on will only heighten your senses making butternut squash a superstar veggie! Continue Reading →

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