I started this blog so my daughters could find all of our family favourite recipes in one place. It has actually grown into more than just the family favourites but also other recipes we've tried out in our kitchen. I don't like to fill up the post with alot of chatter. Sometimes there's a little story to tell, but usually I like to get right to the point. So this is for them, but hope you find some recipes that you like as well. I'll be sharing a lot of recipes, and along the way you'll find some crafty things and maybe some helpful hints too!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Classic Roast Chicken

This is an everyday roast chicken. Nothing fancy, just a juicy tasty bird.

1 chicken
1 or 2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
salt & pepper
1/2 cup white wine (or white wine vinegar)
1 carrot, halved
1 small onion, quartered
1 tsp thyme
sprig rosemary
1  1/2 cups chicken stock
1 tbsp flour
1 tsp beef bouillon concentrate

Sprinkle inside the chicken with half the thyme, salt & pepper. You can tie the carrot, onion, garlic and rosemary in a piece of cheesecloth or just put them all in the cavity as I did here.

Rub the outside of the chicken with butter or olive oil. Sprinkle with thyme, salt & pepper. Put the chicken in pan breast side up, add 1/2 the stock and all the wine.

Bake at 325F basting every 30 minutes for 30 minutes per pound.

Add stock if it evaporates.  When cooked remove chicken and skim fat from pan.
While the chicken rests make your gravy. It might not look so good when you start, don't worry. Sprinkle the flour in the pan and whisk 1 minute. Add the rest of the stock and 1 tsp beef bouillon concentrate scraping the brown bits off the pan.
Ready for dinner?

Sunday, March 23, 2014

THIS is the best Pizza EVER !!

Dough ingredients:
  • 1  1/2 tsp dry yeast
  • 1 cup water, lukewarm
  • 2 tsps sugar 
  • 1 cup bread flour
  • 1 cup all purpose flour (plus more for kneading)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • parchment paper

Sauce ingredients:
  • about 1 cup of Ragu spaghetti sauce (tomato, garlic, onion flavour)
  • 2 tbsps chopped sundried tomatoes in oil
  • 4 small garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1-2 tsps sugar
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 2-3 tbsps red wine

  • pepperoni
  • 2 cups mozzarella
  • mushrooms
  • green pepper
  • spinach/arugula mix
  • drizzle of spicy olive oil

So, to start the dough put the water (you can use tap water as long as it isn't hotter than 100F) in your mixing bowl.  Stir in the sugar, then sprinkle the yeast on top. Leave it to activate 15 minutes.

While waiting for the yeast turn your oven on at it's lowest temperature.  It doesn't even have to reach that temperature and you can turn it off again. You'll be putting your dough in the warm oven later. And take the top rack out, you'll be putting your pizza in on the bottom rack.

Add the salt to 1 cup of bread flour and mix into the water. Mix well, then add the all purpose flour. Add a little more flour, it might look a bit raggy.  Turn out on floured counter and knead to incorporate all. 

Put a tbsp or 2 of olive oil in a glass or metal bowl and toss the dough ball to cover.  Dampen a clean dish towel and place over top of bowl. Put the bowl in the warm (turned OFF) oven. Let rise 40 minutes.

Now you can make the sauce.  Put 1 tbsp of olive oil in a saucepan and toss in the sundried tomatoes and garlic. Cook on low to medium heat for only a couple of minutes.  Then add the Ragu sauce. Stir in oregano, sugar, pepper and red wine. Set aside.

Punch down dough, rest 2 minutes. Cut a baseball sized ball off and keep aside.  

Preheat oven to 500F (Yes 500)

If you are using a pizza stone, turn a pizza pan over so you are using it upside down.  Cut parchment paper to roughly fit.  (It can be bigger, not smaller than the pan) 

OK, here we go. Place pizza stone on the bottom rack in preheated oven. 
Take your dough and start to flatten it.  Now put it on the parchment and press to form your pizza. Or just put it in a greased pizza pan if not using a stone.

(Sorry, didn't think of taking pictures up to this point)

Spread sauce on your pie.

I put the pepperoni on next and then the cheese.

Now because we don't all like the same thing on our pizza, I put different vegetables on each side of the pie. And drizzle with spicy olive oil.
Oh ya, and put your small reserved dough ball in the center, old school style.

When you are happy with the way your pizza looks open the oven and take the edge of your parchment and CAREFULLY slide the paper and pizza onto the stone. 
Bake at 500F for 11 minutes.

Oh my God, it smells like a pizzeria in here!!

Try to wait 5 or so minutes before digging in.

You can see how good the crust looks here and how far the parchment hung over to be able to grasp it.
Don't fight over the dough ball ! 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Bar-B-Barn Style Spanish Rice

Bar-B-Barn is a great place for ribs and chicken in Montreal. They serve a Spanish rice there that is so good.  This recipe is very much like it. 


1 finely chopped onion
1 - 28 oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup water
3/4 cup long grain rice
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp salt
1 tsp chili
1/8 tsp pepper
few drops of Tabasco sauce

Measure the rice and soak in water for 30 minutes. Meanwhile chop the onion and measure out the dry ingredients.
Fill a heavy bottom saucepan with the remaining ingredients, drain the rice and stir all together.
Bring pot to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer approximately 15 minutes until all liquid has evaporated.

Remove from heat and keep covered 5-10 minutes before serving. If you like a saucier rice, add some V-8 juice.

Or make ahead and transfer to a casserole dish to microwave later.

Serves 4-6
If you're going to make the rice, you might as well make the ribs too!


Sunday, March 16, 2014

Guinness Baked Beans

By adding 1 can of Guinness to this recipe (in the last 30 or so minutes of cooking) you'll add oomph and Irish spirit to the meal.


Serve with Irish Soda Bread.
Happy St Patrick's Day!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Pi Day Pies !

Happy Double Pi Day    3.14.14

You could make any kind of pie to mark Pi Day. I chose a Quebec Tourtière (meat pie) for supper.


And for dessert, Pineapple Coconut Custard Pie.


Pineapple Coconut Custard Pie

So yesterday was Pi Day (3.14). Actually, double Pi Day as it was 3.14.14.  So I made 2 pies!  

I actually used an 8 inch cake pan for this one.


Single pie crust
1/2 sugar
1/2 cup syrup (corn preferably, but you can use pancake)
3 tbsp flour
3 eggs
1 cup roughly chopped fresh pineapple
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
1/3 cup melted butter or margarine

In a large bowl mix sugar, syrup and flour.
Whisk eggs in one at a time.  Now add pineapple, vanilla and coconut.
Pour into a pastry lined 8 inch cake pan.
Melt butter and brush over top.  I thought this was going to be messing, but it worked fine.
Bake 50 minutes in a 350F oven.
Cool completely and enjoy!

Thanks to original post:

Oh ya.....my second pie was a tourtière (meat pie)

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Tangy Breaded Pork Chops

I was going to call these "Super Moist breaded pork chops" but they're tangy too.  And "Super Moist Tangy breaded pork chops" ? Well, no. But you get the idea.

Start by letting your pork sit around in vegetable and lemon juice for 4-5 hours. 
Prepare your 3 bowls with flour, egg with worcestershire , and bread crumbs with onion soup mix.
Next take your chop and flour it, then dip in egg mixture and finally press into the crumb mixture. At this point you can keep them on a cookie sheet in the fridge for a couple of hours until you are ready to cook.

Discard any leftover vegetable juice.

Have a frying pan heating on the stove, mid to high temperature.  Add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and lightly brown your chops on each side. 
Place them on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
Bake in a 325F oven for 20-25 minutes depending on the thickness of your pork.


9 boneless centre cut pork chops
1 - 1  1/2 cups vegetable juice (V8)
1 tbsp lemon juice

Flour to coat, about 1/2 - 1 cup
1 or 2 eggs
1 tsp worcestershire sauce per egg
1 - 1  1/2 cups Italian bread crumbs
2 tbsp onion soup mix
2 - 3 tbsp olive oil (you made need to add more to the pan)

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Sweet Potato Rounds

Just got back from Cuba and was inspired after having eaten so many yummy vegetables last week.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Then slice sweet potatoes 1/4 inch thick.  Brush with olive oil and place on parchment.
Sprinkle with you favourite Mrs. Dash (or garlic powder) and sprinkle with romano or parmesan cheese.

Bake at 400F for 30 minutes.  If you want you can broil an extra couple of minutes.  That's it!

As I said, I got used to eating a lot of veggies so I pan-fried some sweet peppers, onions and mushrooms to go along with the sweet potatoes.
Put it all along side a pepper steak topped with a pat of Herbed Butter


Oooh baby!!!!