Friday, 18 April 2014

Raspberry Ricotta
Orange Scented

Light and Fluffy ricotta,
full of flavour with orange zest and a 
Raspberry red swirl
makes this dessert special for the
Spring Season Sensational
Say that 5 times fast!
With Spring finally here and shorts and bikinis right around the corner...
we want to look and feel good without 
feeling deprived.
By substituting lower fat cheeses you can have your dessert and eat it too~  

1/2 can raspberry pie filling
3 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
600g ricotta
1 brick cream cheese
1 grated orange rind
1/2 vanilla bean scraped
200ml 10% cream (half & half)
1/4 cup melted vegetable shortening
2 cup crushed cookies
Line the pan sides with 4" parchment paper "glued" with shortening.
Crust: stir the shortening into the crumbs. Spoon into a springform pan and using the bottom of a glass press the crumb mixture evenly.
In a food processor blend the zest, vanilla, sugar and cream cheese together, until smooth.
Add the ricotta and cream puree. Drop in the eggs and mix for another few seconds. Do not overmix.
Pour into the prepared pan. Dollop large spoonfuls of pie filling around the pan. With the point of a knife swirl the jam.

Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 1hr. 
The mixture will be giggly. Allow to cool for 30 min. Gently press plastic wrap over the cheesecake. Refrigerate overnight.
Berry Sauce:
1/2 lb of washed hulled strawberries, cut
1 pint of fresh raspberries
3 tbsp sugar
Place in a sauce pan with 
1/4 cup water

Bring to a boil and cook for 5 min.
until fruit begins to break up.
Add 1 cup fresh berries
Stir and turn off heat.
Serve over cheesecake 

Enjoy with Love!


Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Creamy Sweet Potato Kugel
Serving Suggestion: Hummus tops this tasty dish
 Passover and Easter 
are upon us
This dish has many origins and names from Germany's Rosti over to Eastern Europe as Kugel. I will be making this showstopper as one of my Easter side dishes.
Potatoes are a great comfort dish and generally people make scalloped potatoes as an elegant side but, I can never eat that because it has cream or dairy in it!
Well this colourful dish is "creamy" without the cream!
I have added sweet potatoes or yams as we call them in Canada and this not only gives me a glorious bright colour and naturally added sweetness to this dish but, with 
So Delicious Coconut Cultured "Yogourt"
 Spring Fling Dairy-Free Recipe Contest - $1000 Grand Prize; Two $250 Runner-Up Prizes
I have added extra nutrition to this tasty dish, lusciousness without the decadent calories!
I pop this into the oven with my other dishes and I have made the Holiday meal easier.
This dish perfumes the house with wonderful cooked onion aromas flavoured with earthy rosemary. A rustic dish with flare~
I hope you love this one as much as my family does.

Creamy Sweet Potato Kugel
 6 russet or yellow potatoes, peeled
1 large yam or sweet potato, peeled
3 small onions, peeled
3 tbsp flour or matzo meal
1 tsp salt
1 tsp rosemary
1/2 cup Cultured Coconut, Original
*2 lg. eggs
3 tbsp EVOO or melted Smaltz
Smatlz is rendered chicken fat made by cooking down the skin of chicken
I make mine with 1 or 2 chopped onions for flavour

Shred the potatoes and onions on the grating disc of the processor or use the large holes of a grater.
Place into a large mixing bowl.
Sprinkle the flour, salt, 2 tbsp oil and rosemary over the mixture.
Whisk the yogourt and eggs together. 
Pour over potato mixture and knead together with your hands thoroughly.
Grease a large black iron skillet or oven proof pan with the remaining oil. Pack the kugel into the pan evenly.
 Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 1- 1.5 hrs. until golden brown on top.
Serves 6-8
Enjoy with love!
*Vegans: leave out the eggs and use only the EVOO to make Rosti


Friday, 11 April 2014

Toasted Almond & Polenta
Marmalade  Cake
This delectable scented cake gets it's roots from the Middle East and through time, the ingredients made their way to Southern Italy.
Golden sweet oranges, dark roasted almonds, gritty corn meal and dark vanilla beans add a chewy hearty texture to this heavenly scented cake from, the first bite to its last. 
Blood oranges if you can find them, would be a showstopping colour and add a touch of tartness.

My experience has taught me the importance of adding a few special touches to make foods & desserts really stand out. 
To this particular recipe I toasted the almonds.
Such a simple step that I add when the oven is preheating, pop those almonds in and they are ready in 20 min!
I always make more than I need and they are a great snack
Not only did this cake bake lusciously dark and rich but, the taste really stands out. There is so much chewiness because I ground the almonds myself instead of buying the costly already ground almonds which would burn if you attempted to toast them. The corn meal adds a whole different texture and chew which is unusual and quite a nice surprise!
That alone makes it special but, the added fragrant scent of zested oranges and vanilla bean add a wonderful perfume to the cake and to the house as it bakes.
This cake is rooted in my Italian history and is a special dish that we bake at this time of the year,
Spring right near Easter,
this cake symbolizes 
a time of renewal with the fresh taste of oranges 
and Mediterranean ingredients.
Rustic, simple ingredients that are not fancy or showstopping but rather delicious in their natural state, which is how things should be enjoyed!
Toasted Almond & Polenta Marmalade Cake
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp margarine
2-3 large oranges
3/4 cup margarine or  sunflower oil
3/4 cup sugar
3 lg eggs
1/2 Rodelle Vanilla bean or 2 tsp Rodelle pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups ground toasted almonds
3/4 cup fine polenta (yellow corn meal)
 course can be used, it will be chewier

1/3 cup + 2 tbsp flour
2 tsp baking powder
zest from 2 oranges
1/4 cup marmalade or light jelly
1 tbsp pure lemon juice
Caramel Prep:
Pour the sugar into a cast iron skillet, add the water and turn the heat up to #6 or #7.
Allow the sugar to begin to melt to a golden stage. Don't touch it just swirl the pan to distribute the liquid gold. Turn off when it becomes golden brown all over. This should take 6-10min. Stir in the margarine, if it crystallizes it doesn't matter.
This is just starting to become golden 
Meanwhile cut the ends of the zested oranges off.
Place the orange flat side down and saw off the peel, removing the white pith.
Slice oranges 1/4" thick
 Place in the skillet, nice side down.

Toasting Almonds 
Place approx. 3 1/2 cup of whole almonds with their peel on a baking sheet and pop it into the oven while the oven is preheating for approx. 20 min. Remove and cool to the touch. Place in a food processor and grind finely but not to a paste. Measure out amount needed.

In a mixer beat shortening with the sugar until fluffy. Add the eggs and blend.
Cut the vanilla bean lengthwise.

Using a knife scrape out the beans and add.
Do not throw this bean! Push it down into your sugar to aromatize.
Add the remaining dry ingredients and zest.
Blend to mix.

Scrape out the mix and spread over oranges.
 Bake in a preheated 350F for 40-45min or until
an inserted skewer comes out clean.
Allow to rest 10 min.

Run a knife around the edges.
Place a large platter over the pan.
 Place your hand on the dish and flip the cake over.
Melt the marmalade, stir in the juice and brush over the oranges 
 Brush the cake as well
Enjoy with love! 

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Panko Crusted
Tater Tenders

My boys who are now grown young men
have always LOVED breaded chicken strips.
Their tastes have become more sophisticated and I can finally experiment on additional flavourings with coatings and spicy dips.  
These chicken tenders have an addition,
Garlic flavoured Potato Flakes!...
yes, sorry once in a while I get off of the nutritional wagon and go AWOL!
It happens,shoulder shrug here
but, of course it's not that far gone, very little is used and it really has added great flavour to an otherwise regular mid week meal. 
I added some colour with black sesame seeds and these power house seeds bring some nutrition 
via: omega 3's & fiber 

I fried these this time because I wasn't eating those calories as hubby and I had other dinner plans.
But you can easily spread them out onto a silpat or greased parchment paper and bake for 20min at 375F
1 cup panko crumbs
3 tbsp dehydrated garlic potato flakes
2 tbsp black sesame seeds
1 egg
2 large chicken breasts
Slice the breasts into long 1/2" slivers
Beat the egg and toss with the chicken to coat.
Place the dry ingredients onto a sheet of waxed paper and mix.
Using tongs grab chicken one piece at a time and dip into crumb mixture. Use the back of your clean hand to press the crumbs into the chicken.
Repeat until done.
Preheat 1" of vegetable oil and fry until golden brown on both sides. Drain on paper towels.
3 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp pureed ginger
1tsp sriracha sauce

Mix together and serve.
Enjoy with love!

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Tuscan Stuffed 'Shroom
I love finding huge mushroom caps at the grocers!
For me that means it's time to make a great stuffed mushroom cap!
These button 'shrooms are so huge
I can't decide if they are an appy', starter, side or meal!
Either way,
they are delicious
 have a moist filling, and are full of colourful vegetables and legumes, you will feel like you are at the green hills of Tuscany.
These have Canadian Lentils, full of protein, fiber
and of course if it's my recipe, so low in fat!
Tuscan Stuffed 'Shrooms

12 large button mushrooms

1/4 cup chopped red pepper

1/4 cup chopped yellow zucchini

3 tbsp chopped parsley

1 green onion, minced

1 tsp chili flakes



1/2 cup canned greens lentils, drained & rinsed

2 tbsp red pepper humus

Remove the stems from the mushroom and dice.

Add oil to a preheated med. size skillet add 1 tbsp oil, begin to sauté all of the mushrooms on both sides, just to slightly soften, adding a pinch of salt to the inside of each mushroom.


Remove to a baking sheet, gill side up.

Add 2 tbsp EVOO to the same skillet and begin to sauté all of the vegetables, herbs, chili and seasonings. Cook on med. heat until slightly softened approx. 5 min.

Add the lentils, stir to mix. Set aside to cool for 5 min. Stir in the hummus to bind. 

Fill the mushroom caps with the filling.

 Press the mixture into the caps to finish all of the stuffing.


1/2 cup bread crumbs, seasoned
I used gluten free crumbs

1 tbsp parmesan

3 tbsp EVOO
 In the same skillet, add the topping mixture, stir.

Sprinkle and press the crumb topping onto each 

You may have some leftover depending on the size of mushrooms.

Bake in a preheated 375F for 15min.

Enjoy with love!

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Strawberry Fool
 Ah finally spring is here~
Well although we still have snow here~
But I am optimistic that it will melt soon!!
This dessert should melt even the coldest of hearts
Strawberry Fool
A light airy dessert that usually gets it's lightness from high in calorie whipped cream.
No Foolin'
sorry pun intended...teehee
Well this dessert lives up to its name using
So Delicious  
dairy free products

Dairy Free Recipe Madness Contest
lower in calories than cream and no saturated fats
This showstopping colourful dessert can be made easily enough for any night of the week and
elegant enough for guests.
Strawberry Fool
Mix together
1 1/2 cups crushed cookie crumbs
1/3 cup vegetable shortening
Sprinkle onto the bottom of a trifle bowl.
2 cups sliced, hulled strawberries
500ml So Delicious Coconut; Cherry Amaretto frozen dessert
454g So Delicious Cultured Coconut "yogourt"; strawberry or blueberry
1 box of strawberry or raspberry jello powder
Take the "icecream" out of the fridge
Bring 1 cup of water to a boil.
Pour the contents of a jello box into the water and stir to dissolve the sugar.
 Do not add more water!
Pour cooled jello into a stand mixer bowl and 
mix in the "yogourt"
 Fold in the strawberries.
Fold in the softened "icecream".
Using a spatula scrape sides and pour over the crumbs, smoothing the top
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
This mixture will slightly firm up.
 Serve individual servings with extra 
berries macerated with a bit of sugar. 
*This can be poured into a springform pan and frozen, then sliced into wedges*

Enjoy with love!

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Lentil Poppers

 Well although it may not look like it,
Spring is finally here!
With this season of renewal comes the outdoor BBQ and all the festivities that come with it.
 It embodies the fresh colours of spring and it's so appealing to serve these individual tasty morsels full of flavour and colour.
This recipe is a great make ahead appy' that you can serve 
warm or cold!
With no fuss, using many of the ingredients you probably have 
in your pantry. 

Kids will 'POP' these without question and you'll know you are giving your family and friends something nutritious using, 
high in fiber, minerals and protein using
Canadian Lentils
Double this and you can freeze them for another
Lentil Popppers

100g canned green lentils, rinsed, drained
1/2 cup cooked seasoned arborio rice
(this has more starch, so it will stick together better for forming balls)
1/2 cup mixed frozen vegetables (peas, corn, carrots)
1/4 cup tzatziki dip
1/3 lb. ground pork or sausage
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs + 2 cups for coating
4 tbsp.  grated Parmesan cheese, divided
2 tbsp. minced flat leaf parsley
1 tsp each salt & ground black pepper
1" vegetable oil for frying; your choice
227g pkg. Tomato Bruschetta for garnish
36 skewers
In a small bowl blend 2 tbsp. Parmesan with 2 cup panko crumbs. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine lentils, rice, vegetables, sauce, meat, crumbs, parsley and 2 tbsp. Parmesan.
Allow to sit for 15 min to absorb flavours.
Shape filling into 1 1/2" balls using a teaspoon or small ice cream scoop. Drop into crumb mixture and roll to adhere coating. Roll mixture using 2 hands to form balls, pressing crumbs to firm. Continue until all are formed.
In a heavy bottomed pot bring 1" of oil to 350F.
*or drop one crumb into oil, if it immediately sizzles and rises, it is preheated*
Place balls into oil do not pack tightly or it will lower the oil temperature.
Fry until golden and crispy. Drain on paper towel.
Pierce each pop from the top to enable easy pick up.
Serve with Bruschetta in individual serving spoons for each

Enjoy with Love
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