Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Caramel Apple
Tart Tatin
Caramel Apple Tart Tatin
So simple, quick and easy but a comforting desserts for anytime of the week
Oozing inside and out with Caramel Sauce
Apple desserts in Autumn are so comforting
Who can resist?
1 pkg puff pastry
6 Granny Smith Apples, peeled, quartered, cored
1 cup caramel sauce
250ml cream cheese
1/3 cup sugar
2 tbsp flour
1 egg

Roll out pastry larger than the size of oven proof skillet by 2". Place in fridge until ready

In a med. heated oven proof skillet place 3 tbsp caramel sauce, stir until melted.

Add apples and cook for 5 min. they will release liquid.  If it is too much liquid drain some and reserve.

Turn apple quarters cut side up as the presentation side will be rounded chunks.  Take off burner and allow to cool while preparing other ingredients.

In a mixer on med. high speed blend cheese, 3 tbsp caramel topping, flour and sugar until no lumps remain.

Add egg and beat only until blended.

Pour mixture over cooled apples. Spread to 1" edge of the border of pan.

Place refrigerated puff pastry over mixture and tuck in edges.  Place skillet on a baking sheet to catch any spills.

Bake on the top shelf in a preheated 375F oven to bake to a golden brown for approx. 40-50min.

Allow to cool for 5 min. but run a sharp knife around edges of pan to loosen any edges.

Place a large platter presentation side down onto the skillet.  * You may want to use oven mits for safety*

Press dish down firmly with one hand and flip skillet with the other hand onto the platter.  Remove any apples that have stuck to the bottom of pan. 

Drizzle with caramel sauce and serve warm with whipped topping or ice cream!


Sunday, 26 August 2012

Oatmeal Blueberry Pancakes
Oatmeal Blueberry Pancakes
Pancakes are a great way to start a weekend!
 Make an extra batch and then individually freeze for popping in the toaster on a busy day when you're in a rush and it will feel like a weekend!
2 cup flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup large flake oatmeal
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp orange zest
1 tbsp baking powder
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
pinch of salt
2 eggs
2 cup milk, water or juice
1 pint blueberries, washed
In a large bowl whisk eggs, liquid, oil and vanilla until thoroughly blended.  Add dry ingredients and mix until almost no flour shows.  Drop in blueberries and incorporate. If the mixture is lumpy it is alright.
Allow to rest for 5-10min while you preheat a skillet. 
In a greased skillet drop 1/2cup of batter at a time, cooking on med high (#6).  Bubbles will arise when the batter is starting to cook. 
When the bubbles begin to pop and the surface is no longer shiny flip pancake using a spatula.  Cook for 1- 2 min on the other side. 
Continue until all batter is finished.  You may need to grease pan once more.
Serving Suggestion: Add a small pat of butter, syrup or dusting of icing sugar.
Enjoy with love

Friday, 17 August 2012

Raspberry & Date Squares

 Raspberry &  Date Squares

This is so easy and very nutritious. The creamy gooeyness of the dates leaves you satisfied and the hint of raspberry jam is a great surprise and delight

2 envelopes of cinnamon oatmeal packets
1 1/2 cup 1 minute oats
2 heaping tbsp. brown sugar
1 cup flour
1/2 cup margarine or room temp. butter
2 tbsp vegetable shortening
2 tsp cinnamon

400g pkg dates, pureed (if not available use whole pitted dates)
3/4cup water
1/4cup raspberry seedless jam
1 tsp cinnamon

In a small pot mix dates, cinnamon, water and jam.  Stir on medium heat until blended and softened.  If using whole dates, mash with a fork as they begin to soften.  Some texture is perfectly fine. Remove to cool slightly.

In a large bowl mix dry ingredients, using a pastry knife cutting shortening into dry flours. 

Spray a 10"x 8" casserole dish with nonstick spray.
Sprinkle 1/2 of the crumb mixture onto the bottom of dish and using the back of your fingers press crumbs down firmly.

Dollop large spoonfuls of date mixture over crumbs and spread evenly from side to side.

Sprinkle remaining crumb mixture over top to cover filling.

Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 35min.  Allow to rest 10 min. then cut into squares and allow to cool completely. 

*If it cools completely before cutting it will be firm and sticky*

Enjoy with Love!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Breaded Chicken with
Baked Yams, Veggie Medley

Breaded Chicken with Baked Yams
& Veggie Medley

This meal is fast and easy and can be made in 30min!
So nutritious and low in fat.  It's not your usual Breaded Chicken.  Join me and see why!

4 chicken breast, deboned, skinned
1/4cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp each fresh herbs, basil & oregano
salt & pepper to taste
1 cup bread crumbs, seasoned
 2 yams, peeled and cut into fries
1 tbsp each chipotle rub & rosemary
2-3 tbsp vegetable oil
2 200g pkgs. snow peas, stringed
1 small zucchini, washed chopped
1 green onion

Preheat oven to broil.

Place mayonnaise, chicken, and 1/2 of the herbs in a pie plate and using hands coat chicken all over. Season to taste, lightly. Set aside.

Place yams on a large baking sheet and drizzle with 2-3 tbsp vegetable oil. (Do not use EVOO it will smoke).  Add seasoning, toss to coat, place under broiler. * Set timer for 5min if you will not remember to check oven*

Sprinkle crumbs on a piece of wax paper. Using tongs place one fillet onto crumbs using the ridges of the tongs scoop the crumbs onto the top of the chicken and with a clean hand gently press crumbs onto chicken.  Turn over and scoop bread crumbs and press.  Repeat until finished with all fillets.

In a heated large skillet add EVOO sparingly and place fillets in skillet, do not overlap or spray the top and bottom of chicken and place on baking sheet for 15min. for a low cal meeal.

Cook until golden brown on all sides. Place in bottom oven rack to keep warm.

Check yams! Using tongs turn over.  Cook for another 5 min.  Checking for browning until all sides are cooked 10-15min in total. Do not let burn.

In a medium heated skillet, add green onion, peas and zucchini, crisp slightly for 1-2 min on med. high, then reduce heat to cook through for 5min. Season to taste.  Sprinkle remaining herbs over and toss  to coat.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Spa Day at Home
Afternoon Delight

Sometimes you don't have to go to a Spa in order to enjoy yourself!
With a little forethought you can enjoy yourself and take the afternoon off and just have fun.
This yellow tail snapper was BBQ'd  with the meal the day before and was actually made for the next day so I wouldn't have to cook but would have a great low calorie meal without the fuss!

1 1b. yellow tail snapper
2 tbsp chipotle pepper rub
sea salt & pepper to taste
1/2 avocado sliced
1 roasted red pepper
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp parsley

This was cooked the day before and refrigerated, so it is cold, which is a great way to eat a firm fish.

Sprinkle rub and seasonings on fish. Cook on BBQ or  greased grill pan for 10-15min on each side.

When a pepper is roasted it "shreds" along the grain vertically so you don't need a knife to slice it. Place pepper into a small bowl, drizzle EVOO over peppers, add seasonings, herbs and garlic.  Toss to coat. 
How much oil?  Be generous it's good for you.
You can drizzle the flavoured oil over bread and you have a great accompaniment to your meal!
Serve with avocado and a refreshing water

Spa Water
with Cucumber and Basil Leaves

Friday, 3 August 2012

Eggs a la Romana with
Guacamole Salsa

Saucy Eggs with Guacamole Salsa

This is a delish dish my mother used to make for me when I was a child.  It is comforting and so tasty and uses leftover tomato sauce!

4 heaping tbsp. of your favourite tomato sauce
(check out my recipe for Tomato Sauce with Riblets)
2 eggs
2tbsp water


1/2 avocado, peeled, diced
1/2 tomato, washed, diced
1 tbsp minced onion
1/2 lime zested and squeezed
salt & pepper to taste

Place tomato sauce and water in a small skillet on med high.  Bring to a simmer, stirring to mix.

Carefully crack eggs and place in simmering liquid.  Spoon some sauce onto eggs. Cover pan and reduce heat to low simmer cook to your desired consistency. Place eggs over toasted bread

Mix all ingredients
Season with salt and pepper
Serve on side.

Enjoy with love!

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Tomato Sauce with Riblets
Tomato Sauce and Riblets

I make many tomato sauces and they are rarely the same!
That's because as any good economical cook, you try to use what you have on hand and in season. 
It's better for the pocket book and for the the planets sustainability.
When ever I buy side ribs there is a breast bone. I cut this part off and section it off into small pieces. I also use the fleshy end which has no bones and dries out on the BBQ.  It can be cut and used for stews of any type. Today I'll show you how to use it for homemade tomato sauce.  Pork in a ragu gives you a thick richness which I love It's comforting and delish!

1 lb pork riblets or end pieces
2 tbsp vegetable oil
750ml - 1 lt of tomato puree
2tbsp tomato paste
sea salt & pepper to taste
2 tsp dried oregano
4-5 leaves basil, torn
1/2 onion chopped
2 cloves garlic chopped
1/2- 1 cup of water
1/2 cup white or red wine

In a med. sauce pot heat oil, add pork pieces and brown on med. high heat turning to caramelise all sides. When you have turned the meat to the last side to brown add the onions and garlic, stirring. 

When all the liquids begin to evaporate, (you will hear the slight crackling), add the wine.  Stir to distribute.  When the wine reduces almost completely add the tomato sauce, paste, water, seasonings and herbs.  Bring to a boil, continue stirring occasionally. 

Reduce heat to a simmer and let cook stirring occasionally for 1 hr.  If the sauce is too thick add more water.

This can be served over any pasta shape, rice, whole grain or pizza topping.
The uses are endless

Enjoy with love!