Saturday, May 19, 2012

Flour Tortillas

I don't want to get in the habit of rehashing all my old recipes but I simply cannot resist reminding you all about this one. I'm back in Vancouver at the moment and made these last night.....

Homemade Flour Tortillas

AND

I know some of you didn't know I had this recipe on my website!!!! Shock and awe at learning this! This recipe is one of my CLASSICS! Scratch tortillas are infinitely better than store bought. One try and you'll never go back!

Promise.

(Recipe link)

Monday, May 7, 2012

Ice Cream season is here!

It was hot today...not the 70 degree spring day that everyone thinks is hot but is really just warm and only seems hot because you've just lived through 5 months of chill-you-to-your-core ice, wind, rain and snow.

Today was like legit summer hot. *sigh* At last!!!!

Lets celebrate with some healthy ice cream!

It's soooooo good that you won't miss all that cream and sugar!

Remember my healthy chocolate ice cream post? Well if you don't then it's time that I reintroduce you...

World,
Let me reintroduce you to frozen bananas pureed with pure cocoa powder.

Healthy Ice Cream

Yum!

(Recipe link here)

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Tips for a Perfect Omelet

Basic Omelet
Omelets have always been a mystery to me. I would overcook them, under cook them and have them completely fall apart as I flipped them over.

After many years of practice I've finally found the perfect method. I'm sure many of you have already mastered omelets so this post probably isn't very interesting, but for those of you who are still striving for picture perfect, restaurant quality omelets then maybe this post can help.

How to make a basic Folded Omelet

Some of the major lessons learned have been:
  • Use a really good non stick fry pan than you love and trust.
  • Invest in a super wide spatula. A wide base will be able to lift more of the egg preventing rips or tears. 
  • 1 egg is not enough, 3 is too much, 2 eggs are just right. I find 3 egg omelets too heavy to work with. With 2 eggs you get the perfect amount egg to filling ratio while still being manageable. 
  • Prepare the filling before you start cooking the eggs. The egg doesn't take that long to cook so make sure you cook the meat and veggies first. Also remember to add fillings to the omelet that are warm or at least room temperature. You may overcook your eggs waiting for your filings to warm up.
  • Cook, flip, fill, fold. I used to cook my eggs until the bottom was set but the top still runny, add my fillings to one side, flip the other side over the fillings and watch all the runny egg and filling pour out. I would then sit down and slice into an omelet that was still uncooked in the center! What I needed to do was cook the egg on medium-low until almost completely set. Then take my wide spatula pick up the entire layer of egg and quickly but careful flip the whole thing over so the top of the eggs can cook. Then while that is happening add cheese and fillings to half the omelet and fold the other half over. Clean, simple, and cooked all the way through.
  • Keep the heat low to medium-low depending on your stove. You want those eggs to cook evenly.
Basic Folded Omelet

What you need to make 1 Folded Omelet:
  • 2 large eggs
  • favourite cheese shredded or crumbled; depending on the type.
  • Warm precooked veggies & meat you want to stuff it with; ie. mushrooms, diced onion, diced bell pepper, spinach, cubed ham, crumbled sausage.
  • medium-small sized non-stick fry pan. 8" pan is best.
  • 1 tsp of butter
Instructions:
  1. Beat the 2 eggs in a small bowl  for a few seconds and set aside. * for colour and flavour you can add your favorite chopped fresh herbs to the eggs and stir.
  2. Prepare your fillings, cook and set aside. I use roughly 1/4 cup fillings per omelet. 
  3. Heat your non stick pan on medium-low. Melt the tsp of butter in the pan and swirl around to coat.
  4. Add the eggs to the pan. Swirl the pan just enough to cover the base evenly with egg. Cook on low until almost set.
  5. When only the top center of the eggs are unset then using a wide spatula or two regular sized ones, carefully flip the omelet over to continue cooking on the other side.
  6. Sprinkle cheese on half and top the cheese with your other warm fillings. Fold the half of the omelet without toppings over top of the half with toppings. Turn heat all the way down and cover with a pot lid until cheese is melted. Usually takes about 1 minute. 
  7. Carefully side omelet from pan to plate and dig in.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Dutch Baby with Blueberry Sauce


Dutch Baby
Dutch Baby Pancake with Fresh Blueberry Sauce
This super simple breakfast brings me so much joy! It’s quick, easy, and dirt cheap but when you pull that golden fluffy giant pancake out of the oven and pour on some fresh blueberry sauce,  the presentation and ‘wow’ factor is priceless. My pictures unfortunately do not do this dish justice. So don’t judge by my bad, I’d say impatient to eat, photography skills.

This recipe makes one large Dutch baby perfect for a large cast iron skillet. This can also be made in a glass 9 x 13 inch casserole pan. Just melt the butter in the microwave and spread to coat the entire pan.

The recipe serves four and you’ll make enough sauce for waffles or crepes the next morning! 

Dutch Baby puffed up -  fresh from the oven.

Dutch Baby
By Kaitlyn McFadden

Ingredients:
·         2 tbsp of butter
·         4 eggs
·         1 cup of milk (we use soy)
·         1 cup of AP flour (we use whole wheat)

      Directions:  
  1.  Preheat oven to 425F 
  2.  Heat up your large cast iron skillet and melt the butter, swirling it around to cover the pan. 
  3.  Mix the remaining ingredients well until a smooth batter is formed. Pour into the skillet and bake for 15-20 minutes. You know its ready when the edges are browned and the center has puffed up. For me that takes about 18 minutes.
  4.  Remove from oven and immediately cut and serve

Blueberry Sauce
By Kaitlyn McFadden

*This is a pretty flexible recipe. Add more water the fresher your blueberries are ie. Recently purchased frozen blueberries have less ‘ice’ on them than that bag that’s been sitting in your freezer for 3 months :)

Sub blueberries for raspberries and you have Raspberry Sauce!
Ingredients:
·         2 cups of frozen blueberries
·         ¼ cup of brown sugar, or less depending on your taste
·         1 tsp of vanilla extract
·         Splash of balsamic vinegar.
·         1 tbsp – ¼ cup water depending on how frozen or fresh your blueberries are.
·         1 tbsp of cornstarch dissolved in 1 tbsp of water

Directions:
  1. Add all ingredients but the water and the cornstarch to a small sauce pan. Heat until simmering. 
  2. Add some water if your blueberries don’t look very saucy/juicy.  
  3. Taste and add more sugar or vanilla as needed. 
  4.  Add cornstarch and simmer until thickened. 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Irish Cream Chocolate Cake

I'm back!

Tall delicious Irish Cream Chocolate Cake
Irish Cream Chocolate Cake
I know its been super long since I've posted but my 50-60 hour weeks are done, I've vacationed all those tax returns out of my system and we've picked yet another house and put in yet another offer. Hopefully this one sticks. I've found the whole home purchasing process to be incredibly stressful. Shawn bought the place we are in the day he met me so I've never had to deal with the whole negotiation process; in sum, I don't like it. We've given up once and I've given up twice but the allure of a second bedroom keeps beckoning us.

When I'm feeling tired or stressed two things really seem to help: exercise and chocolate. The fact that I've found the most amazing chocolate cake recipe probably hasn't been the best thing as it's much more alluring to choose cake over the gym.

This recipe has 1 and a half cups of Irish cream in it!!!! Yes you read that correctly, 1 and a half cups! So for those of you that enjoy that 'third vice' this cake has plenty of that. It bakes for an hour so I'm pretty sure all the alcohol is baked out but the Irish cream flavour remains and is strong enough that you taste it in every delicious bite.


This recipe is a  MUST try. It’s perfect for a special occasion, Sunday dinner or a Friday date night. I even subbed out part of the butter which lowered the fat content without compromising the taste or texture. I’m going to sub all of the butter next time I make this. I’d shy away from subbing the eggs though…for some reason I think this recipe deserves to have eggs in it


Irish Cream Chocolate Cake dressed up for St. Patrick's Day


Irish Cream Chocolate Cake
From FoodIsMyLife

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup of cocoa powder (use natural cocoa powder not dutch-processed)
  • 1.5 cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup brewed strong coffee, can be hot or at room temperature
  • 1 cup butter ( I subbed unsweetened applesauce)
  • 1.5 cups Irish Cream (don't be shy, I used a little bit more)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 320F. Grease your  8.5 inch width by 4 inch high Dutch oven and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  2. Mix together flour and baking soda and set aside in a small bowl.
  3. Heat the cocoa powder, sugar, coffee and butter in a sauce pan on medium heat. Heat until butter is melted and cocoa powder and sugar dissolved. Pour the cocoa-coffee into a large mixing bowl or stand mixer and let it rest until just warm to the touch.
  4. Add the Irish cream to the chocolate mixture and stir. Whisk in the eggs one by one followed by the vanilla.
  5. Add in the flour slowly and whisk gently until all the flour has been incorporated. The cake batter will be thin and bubbly (because of the reaction between the baking soda and the cocoa powder).
  6. Pour the cake batter into the prepared Dutch oven. Tap the pot on your counter top gently 3 to 5 times to remove excess air bubbles.
  7. Bake the cake for 1 hour. Cover the top of the cake with the Dutch oven lid and continue baking for 30 minutes until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake come out with a few crumbs.
  8. Place the Dutch oven on a rack and cool completely.
  9. Slice and serve