Monday, 31 October 2011

Trick or Treat

I love Halloween.

There's the fun of dressing up, tons of goodies to snack on, scary movies to watch, and best of all I love getting creative in the kitchen.

You might be thinking that I mean baking candy apples or caramel popcorn, but I actually mean getting creative and cooking dinner!

A friend told me how she was at a party that served upscale Halloween food for adults. There was everything from squid ink pasta with shrimp and a spicy red pepper sauce to pumpkin stuffed tortellini with blackened cod.

Hearing about those treats made me excited and I knew I had to get creative in my kitchen this year. I took a slightly different route with my own ideas, but I might try one of those treats in 2012!

Black Sesame Crusted Fish with Pumpkin Gnocchi and Fried Green Tomato "Eyes"

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Chili Today... and Chili Tomorrow

Victoria is cold and wet in the fall and all I want for dinner is something that's not a lot of work and will warm me up.

These two recipes do both for me. The first uses my favourite invention, the slow cooker, and the second is an easy recipe that makes a lot for even easier leftovers.

So I guess that means the title of this post should read "Pulled Pork Today, Chili Tomorrow, and More Chili After That". But that doesn't really have the same ring does it?

Let's start with the basic Pulled Pork with my quick BBQ sauce.

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Ode to Steve

When I think of my brother and food, I think of two things.

Number 1, he eats a lot. Number 2, he likes Porcupine Meatballs.

I'm sure you've heard of this dinner before but incase you haven't, these are the little meatballs rolled in spiky rice with a gooey cheese centre and a tomato sauce.

My mom got this recipe from a neighbour and it's changed over the years to suit our taste buds, but she claims to have named it herself.

Can you believe that my mom thought that the name was hers? I felt bad when I told her I Googled it and saw that thousands of people before her have named it the same thing.

This doesn't change how yummy they are though!

But before I get carried away with teasing my mom, here's my brother's favourite recipe.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

My Big Fat Italian Wedding

Really, I am a morning a morning person. But on cold mornings, I am anything but that. 

I hate pulling myself out from under the covers in the morning and feeling a chill on my skin. I'm not even tired anymore, but I feel cold and I don't want to move. 

So on days like today, I try to look on the bright side and think about warm things. 

One of those things is a big bowl of steamy soup. And I love soup. 

I love soup so much that I included one of my favourite warm and cozy soup recipes in my card at a bridal shower this weekend. 

And what could be more perfect for the occasion than Italian Wedding Soup? 

But you're not getting just any Italian Wedding Soup. You're getting my Big Fat Italian Wedding Soup. It's chunky and delicious, and it might even beat out the original version I gave to my friend. 

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Muy Bueno

If your Spanish is like mine, you might need a little help with translating this blog post's title.

But, if you speak Spanish like a native, you'll already know that it means very good!

And that's what this post is all about, something Mexican that tastes very good!

So let's get down to it and enjoy a bowl of very good Mexican Tortilla Soup before it gets cold. :)

Saturday, 22 October 2011

In a Bowl with a Spoon

I like to tease my mom because her favourite dinners are leftovers that she eats in a bowl with spoon on the sofa.

My mom is such a great cook so, at first, it sounded crazy to me that leftovers were her favourite meal. But then I tried it and realized that everything tastes so much better when there's no work involved. 

And before you decide that I am going to have pictures demonstrating how to reheat leftovers, don't worry. I have a one pot meal that reinvents leftovers to show you today. 

But you can eat the meal in a bowl with a spoon. 

And since there's only one pot (with a steamer basket to steam the veggies on top), there's barely any cleanup either!

Friday, 21 October 2011

World's Best Sandwich

If this sandwich didn't come to your mind when you read the title of this post, we're on different wavelengths.

Such different wavelengths that you will need to keep on reading so you can learn something very important. Obviously what the best sandwich truly is... 

This sandwich is so good that you can only have it a few times a year. You might think it's a lot of work, but I think of it as the best leftovers ever. And you're going to have to have it at home because I've never seen it on a menu before. 

Not even at Subway. 

Here it is!

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

The Father of All Dips

Ok... So I took a little liberty with the title of this post, and maybe no one has ever called this recipe the Father of All Dips. But they should, and not only for the taste. 

I'm talking about Baba Ganoush and while I love the smoky flavour of the slow roasted garlic and eggplant, the word Baba actually translates to father in Arabic. 

Mother's believed that if they fed their daughter's this dip, they would attract husbands with similar attributes to their fathers. 

I don't know how true that is, but you know it's said that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach, so maybe the daughter's just learned their mother's recipes after tasting the yummy dips! 

Plus, I think someone's father just loved this dip and that's partially why it's called Baba Ganoush. Maybe someone named Father Ganoush!

I hope you love my creamy version!

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Easy Leftovers

Lots of leftover turkey meals feel just like a boring old plate of the same stuff as the night before.

I hate being bored with food. I think being bored would make me dislike cooking. So that's why I like to change things up and make the old into something new.

This is a fresh new dish that makes turkey leftovers sing with the happiness of a new meal, but really it's just a plate with leftovers from the night before.

Plus it's easy as can be, because after cooking a big meal with a turkey -- you deserve it!

Curious yet?

Here you go!

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Bringing the 90s Back

I was born in the 80s so I don't remember a lot about the 90s, but I do know that it's usually not a good thing when people say a meal looks like it's from the 90s.

Usually, the colours, the old designs, and the food pairings of so-called 90s food just feel dull and uninteresting to us now.

Hopefully you agree with me when I say that it's a good thing when I am bringing the 90s back with my sweet and delicious Sweet Potato and Marshmallow Casserole.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Mash Up

Some of the best things in life are a combination of two great things.

You've got songs like the ones from my favourite TV show Glee. I love the one pairing Beyonce's Halo with Katrina and the Wave's Walking on Sunshine!

There's the Dark Side of Oz with the Wizard of Oz movie providing the visuals and Pink Floyd's the Dark Side of the Moon providing the sound.

Then there are books like Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. That mash up needs no explanation. But if you haven't read it, I recommend it!

Finally, there are other mash ups like jorts...

Luckily for you, my mash up is nothing like an old pair of jean shorts...

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Dressing for Success

I know appearances aren't everything, but a first impression does count. And if your first impression isn't all that great, you might not get everything you wanted.

The first glance determines a lot. You look at something and decide whether or not you want to get a taste of it, you get a lasting impression and that might affect the taste you have of it...

Wait... You don't think I'm talking about a job interview or something do you?

I'm not. Don't you know where you are? You're reading Delish in a Dish! And I'm talking about food!

Food impressions count just as much as people impressions, maybe more because at least people can talk. The only thing food can offer you before you take a bite is how it looks and how it smells.

So I try my best to make food look appetizing. Hopefully you'll agree that a picture of my most recent dressing recipe offers enough to make you want to take a bite. And if not, let me tell you that the smell was incredible!

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Classically Trained

I was classically trained to cook, but not in the way you might be picturing...

There were no white hats in my kitchen. I didn't go to a cooking school. I have never worked in a restaurant. And I certainly haven't won any Michelin Stars.

I have big dreams, but I haven't done any of those things.

Instead, I was trained in the most classical way possible. I'm talking about how you learn real cooking, real love-filled cooking.

My mom taught me.

I'm sure you could see that coming, but I had to spell it out anyway for people not as smart as you.

So when you read the two following recipes I know you might think that they're just regular pies, but remember that a classically trained home cook made them. Plus, I won an award for one of my pies once.

That's right, I won an award. I was in the newspaper and everything!

I might have won the prize for youngest contestant, but who cares. I was around 5 years old and I took home the prize! It may have been grocery store treats, but I won and that's all I needed!

Monday, 10 October 2011

Let's Talk Turkey

That's right everyone, I am going to speak plainly about how to make a delicious turkey dinner. Well.. the bird part anyway!

I may have made some mistakes in the past, but I think I have learned from my mistakes and now am pretty accomplished at making a holiday meal. 

Here are a few of my top tips for making a turkey (and how to easily carve the bird).

What says Thanksgiving the most?

I guess turkey does, but I'm getting to that soon...

So other than turkey, what says Thanksgiving the most?

Brussel sprouts!

And I am one of those crazy people that have always loved them... But don't ignore me now! They don't have to have that old cabbage taste, not if you don't overcook them. So listen to me and you might end up loving this veggie!

But before I tell you how I cook them now, here's a little story from when I was a child and helping my mom with the grocery shopping.

I was never an ordinary child. I corrected people's grammar, I was tidy, and I loved brussel sprouts. So when I saw the brussel sprouts in the store, I wanted them! I loved them because they were like baby cabbages. And I loved all small things.

I asked for the brussel sprouts and since my mom didn't like them, she wasn't sure what to do... Please me and have to eat the dreaded veg or say no to a child wanting the dreaded veg?

After I whined for a while I got them.  How could you deny a child that kind of "treat"?

But now I live in my own house so we have brussel sprouts I lot more frequently and I am always trying out new recipes to keep my old lady veggie cool.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Cabbage Patch Kids

I grew up in the age of Cabbage Patch Kids and never thought much about how weird the Cabbage Patch story was. I mean children hatching from a cabbage patch? That's pretty bizarre...

But the dolls were successful and I sure had my fair share of them. 

Wa Wa the Cabbage Patch Kid was my first doll and I loved her. She had a little patch of short blond hair, a pink outfit to match my own, and I think I dragged her pretty much everywhere.

I might even still have her in my old bedroom at my mom's house, just waiting for me to give to my child one day. Hopefully I didn't chew her up too bad...  

As much as I loved playing with my Cabbage Patch Kids as a child, I equally love playing with cabbage recipes today. 

I wonder if my current love of cabbage stems from my old love of the dolls?

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Rooting for the Underdog

If you love reality TV or watching the Olympics like I do, you'll know what I mean when I say I love rooting for the underdog.

It's just not a lot of fun if you know what the outcome's going to be or if the biggest, strongest, or most talented person always wins.

My feelings on that might be because I know that I am not the biggest, strongest, or most talented, but even if I was, I don't think I would want to watch me win all the time.

Unless there was a good prize... But that's a different matter...

So, since I love to root for the underdog, I love to try all kinds of food.

This recipe is actually something I love, but I know that it gets a bad rap and is often thought of as an underdog.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Relish the taste

This post might have the simplest recipe I have ever shared, but it's very fitting for the season and easy is what you need for a stressful day like Thanksgiving.

About five years ago Luke and I celebrated our first Thanksgiving together and I was excited to share my cooking with him.

I knew that this wasn't the first night he would taste something I had prepared, but it was the first holiday meal with a lot of side dishes and treats. It was something special.

So, I cooked and cleaned and got everything ready. Finally it was time to eat and I thought I had done everything well.

Did you see the word thought?

Anyway, it was time to carve the bird and I stuck my knife in, but it wouldn't go through. All I could think of was that the store sold me a breast-less turkey!

But, I didn't let it ruin my night. Despite the bird situation, we ate, laughed, and had a great time.

Then we cleaned up...

That was when I discovered I made a rookie mistake. I had put the turkey in the roaster upside down...

Hey, at least the sandwiches were moist!

Here's a simple recipe to help you through the stress of the holiday. It's not much, but it tastes great and is as easy as can be.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Happy Birth-Jay

Today is my brother J's 21st birthday! He lives far from me, or else I would have invited him over for dinner and birthday cake.

J doesn't get as excited about food as I do, but I think I could have made him something he would have loved.

He really likes beef jerky and I am sure he would love my recipe, but that's not something he would choose for dinner.

Actually maybe he would choose that... But that wouldn't be something I would have offered him for dinner tonight because as we all know, I love balanced meals.

No, tonight I would have made J something with sausage in it. He loves sausage and this meal is something so flavourful that I didn't even need any salt or pepper.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

The New Ants on a Log

How do make such a classic snack into something new? 

I did it! I took that boring piece of celery slathered with peanut butter and topped with raisins to a new level of tastiness. 

But it's not at all what you'd expect. For one thing, it's no longer a snack. It's a dinner! And for another, it's not just for kids, adults will love this too. 

Alright, I won't keep you waiting any longer. 

Just one more thing... Remember your wallet when you run out to the store for the ingredients of this dish. I know I get forgetful when I get hungry.