Moving on {plus instructions on where to find me :) }

Hello readers!  It’s been a while – almost three full months exactly.  I haven’t dropped off the face of the earth, though I can see why it might seem that way.

I’ve spent the past few months working on my brand new food blog and I’m pleased to announce that it’s finally time for the big reveal!

Introducing my new healthy food blog

I will now be blogging exclusively on my new site, Ricotta and Radishes.  Have a look and let me know what you think!  If you like what you see, go ahead and subscribe by email or connect with me on social media for regular updates (you’ll see the pink icons in the sidebar). Continue reading

A belated Happy New Year, plus blog changes coming in 2014

Hello everyone and happy new year!

Please forgive my lack of posts and belated holiday wishes. I’ve spent the past week aboard the Carnival Freedom cruise ship (our third annual family cruise), enjoying visits to the sun-soaked Caribbean islands of Tortola, Antigua, St. Thomas and the Bahamas. It was a wonderful trip but, as usual, the time went by way too fast.

I’m now sitting in the Fort Lauderdale airport waiting out flight delay after flight delay on a Greyhound bus headed to Buffalo. Having been completely off the grid and offline for a full ten days–a slice of time that feels like ages in today’s hyper-connected world–internet access is a real treat. So I figured I’d use this time to tap out a quick post to let you know what’s in the works for 2014. Continue reading

Homemade spiced nuts

Homemade spiced nuts

I’ll keep this post short and sweet because I know you’ve got better things to do this week – it’s Christmas, after all!

Crunchy, salty foods are my version of heaven when it comes to snacks.  These festive homemade spiced nuts

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Creative Christmas recipe ideas for your next holiday potluck, plus a romaine and ramen noodle salad recipe

Christmas tree vegetable platter

Christmas tree vegetable platter made by Krista {one of the winning dishes}

I’ve mentioned before that my fellow staff are pretty talented when it comes to cooking up creative, festive treats (see what they did for Halloween), and this year’s Christmas office potluck was no exception.

Being in the health products industry, we have a disproportionately high number of healthy eaters, foodies and fitness junkies in the office. The result: an impressive spread of nutritious, (mostly) healthy, extremely tasty holiday mains, sides and appetizers. Continue reading

Thai coconut pumpkin soup

Thai coconut pumpkin soup

There’s something fragrant in the air, and it’s not gingerbread. This time of year, when things are all hustle and bustle and you can’t quite catch a break, take a few moments to treat yourself to a nice bowl of this deliciously aromatic Thai coconut pumpkin soup. Continue reading

Pizzelle {Italian waffle cookies}

Italian pizzelle

If you’re Italian, or have ever attended an Italian event such as a wedding, church function or Christmas dinner at your friend’s nonna’s house, you have probably encountered pizzelle before.

Pizzelle (pronounced like pizza, but with an elle at the end instead) are thin, wafer-like Italian cookies made from eggs, sugar, flour, oil and anise flavouring.  They’re subtly sweet and have a pleasant licorice flavour that is particularly enjoyable after a big meal. Continue reading

Salmon party log {retro appetizer idea}

Salmon party log appetizerBrowsing through vintage cookbooks is one pastime I’ll never get tired of, especially during the holiday season. Christmas is a time of tradition and nostalgia, and there’s nothing more nostalgic than bringing forgotten favourites back to life.

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An Italian-Canadian Christmas Tradition: Feast of the Seven Fishes, plus a seafood fra diavolo recipe {Canadian Food Experience Project}

Seafood fra diavolo with pasta

My (Italian) Canadian Christmas Tradition: Feast of the Seven Fishes

Christmas Eve just might be the most magical night of the whole year. The electricity in the air is palpable, and everyone seems to possess a sparkly energy in anticipation of the next day.

The Feast of the Seven Fishes is a Christmas Eve tradition observed by Italian Americans (and also Canadians) that consists of a multi-course seafood meal.  The tradition is based on the  Roman Catholic practice of avoiding meats and dairy on the evening before religious holidays including Christmas.

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Brussels sprouts slaw with pecans & dried cranberries

Brussels sprouts slaw with pecans and dried cranberries

If you grew up eating boiled Brussels sprouts, you may not even realize you’re consuming the same vegetable when you taste a forkful of this vibrant slaw. Continue reading

How to make homemade turkey stock, plus the ultimate Thanksgiving leftovers sandwich

Turkey sandwich with thanksgiving leftovers

The single greatest thing about hosting Thanksgiving dinner is…wait for it…getting to keep the leftovers!  Stuffing, mashed potatoes, vegetables, that perfect turkey – it’s all there, ready and waiting to be enjoyed as is or transformed into something new. Continue reading

A Thanksgiving dinner for six {menu & recipes}

Roast Thanksgiving turkey with paprika

For those of us living in the great white north, Thanksgiving has been over for weeks – Canadian turkey day fell on October 14th this year.  The best part about Thanksgiving (other than the food, of course) is spending time with your loved ones.  Unfortunately it’s not always possible to get together with everybody in one short weekend, especially when you have two sides of the family to contend with.  So much driving, so little time!

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Easy appetizer idea: Antipasto skewers with salami, olives & mozzarella

Olive, salami and mozzarella skewers appetizers

Before I say anything else – I’ve been waiting to use this wine bottle serving plate forever!  Ahh. Anyway…

Happy holidays everyone! One of my favourite things about this time of year can be summed up in one word (and no, it’s not presents): appetizers. Continue reading

Spanish sweet potato tortilla {Spanish omelette recipe}

Spanish sweet potato tortilla

Spanish tortilla, which is best described as a stovetop potato cake, is a really fun way to serve potatoes. The traditional recipe uses regular white spuds, but I opted for sweet potatoes for a fun twist. (Can you tell I’m obsessed with sweet potatoes? If you are too, have a peek at my roasted sweet potatoes with sumac, sweet potato latkes with paprika, sweet potato poutine, beef stew with acorn squash and sweet potatoes.)

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Orecchiette with Brussels sprouts, prosciutto & walnuts

Orecchiette with Brussels sprouts, prosciutto & walnuts

Every once in a while a dish comes along that makes me wonder why I even bother eating at restaurants. This orecchiette with Brussels sprouts, crispy prosciutto and toasted walnuts is one of those dishes.

It’s not overly impressive by any means–quite the opposite actually! –but it has a restaurant quality feel to it and is better than anything I’ve had dining out in a long while.

The orecchiette (Italian for “little ears”) act as tiny cups to hold on to the garlicky oil, chewy toasted walnuts and crisp prosciutto. Brussels sprouts are probably my favourite green vegetable, and their nutty, ever-so-slightly bitter flavour really sings in this dish.

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The Canadian Harvest in Guelph, plus beef stew with winter vegetables recipe {Canadian Food Experience Project}

Beef stew with winter vegetables

The Canadian Harvest in Guelph

Guelph is one of those picture perfect cities that boasts historic Victorian architecture, accessible farmer’s markets, ample green space, a world class university and a quaint downtown core with quality shopping spots and a lively restaurant scene. I’ve lived here for just shy of a decade and am still discovering new, interesting things to do (and eat!) in Guelph. Continue reading

Indian spiced scrambled eggs {plus tips on cooking with curry powder}

Indian spiced scrambled eggs

I’m kind of addicted to curry powder. It somehow ends up in just about everything…chicken salad sandwiches, roasted pumpkin seeds, pumpkin soup, meatballs, and of course actual curries like aloo gobi. And don’t get me started on curry mayo – the ultimate dipper for sweet potato fries!

Learning new things is my favourite part about cooking, and I’m the first to admit I’m no pro. But I’ve picked up a couple of tips through reading, researching and trial and error, and one of these happens to be incorporating ‘ethnic’ spices like curry powder into conventional dishes to give them some oomph. So if you’re unfamiliar with it, here’s all you need to know to work fragrant, rich curry powder into your cooking repertoire.

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Roasted pumpkin seeds with onion & herbs

Roasted pumpkin seeds herbs and spices

Roasted pumpkin seeds are the one treat I make every year around Halloween and never get sick of.  They’re crunchy, chewy and just as satisfying as popcorn or potato chips.  They also happen to be rich in dietary fibre, protein, vitamins and minerals. Continue reading

Spooky Halloween food ideas {from our second annual office potluck}

Halloween devilled eggs

Devilish devilled eggs (made by me)

Who knew that a group of scientists, clinical researchers and regulatory specialists (aka my co-workers) could be so creative in the kitchen?! (Actually, given the skill that went into their treats last year, I’m not really surprised.) Continue reading

The home cook’s guide to stocking a basic pantry for easy, healthy meals: A visual checklist

Hi guys!  Every once in a while I like to give you a recap of what’s been going on around the ol’ blog and what I’ve been working on lately.

First of all, is it just me or has this fall been crazier than usual?  Aside from work, which never fails to keep me on my toes, I’ve been busy as a bee trying new recipes (as per usual), reading up on how to switch my blog over to and eventually re-name and re-brand (stay tuned for updates over the next little while) and poking around with a couple of side projects.

One such project I’ve really been enjoying is building a collection of fun visual guides, checklists and infographics on everything from cooking tips to pantry must-haves (see the very first one, below – click to download the high-res pdf).

What to stock in your pantry for healthy meals

The home cook’s guide to creating a basic but well stocked pantry

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