Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Dill Pickle Dip

to dip or not to dip?
the eternal question that leaves chip lovers divided.

i grew up in a family of 'dippers' so i guess you could say i come by it honestly.
growing up i can vividly remember my mom's love for old dutch ripple potato chips.  back then they came in a box, split into two bags & opened down the middle.  and she loved them. and loved them even more when she had a tub of french onion dip on the side.  she was always more of a scooper, than a dipper so chances are we'd run out of dip before chips, but this is why i love her.  dad on the other hand wasn't impressed with the chip to dip ratio, but that didn't bother her one bit.

today i'm leaving behind the french onion kind (i'm saving that one for my mama) in favour of dill pickle because if ever there was a fan of pickles, it is the host of tonights NYE party, the lovely JA.

why would you have a dill pickle chip when you could dip instead.

dill pickle dip

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups dill pickles, chopped
1/4 cup sweet onion, diced
1-2 tablespoons pickle juice
1 teaspoon dillweed
granulated garlic, sea salt & pepper to taste

ripple chips, crackers & vegetable sticks for serving

in medium bowl stir softened cream cheese until smooth.  add in remaining ingredients, stirring until well mixed.
allow to refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.

serve with ripple chips, crackers, or vegetable sticks.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Rolo Ritz Crackers

rolo meet ritz.
ritz meet rolo. 

sweet & salty

chocolate & caramel

this is perfection.

this is also how i plan to send out 2014 and ring in the new year.

simple & heavenly.

Rolo Ritz Crackers

rolo pieces
ritz crackers

preheat oven to 350F
place ritz crackers on baking sheet and top each with a rolo.
bake for 3-5 minutes.  remove from oven and top with another ritz cracker.

Monday, 29 December 2014

grapefruit & greek yogurt parfait

donkey from shrek said it best:

"you know what else everybody likes?  parfaits.  have you ever met a person, you say, "let's get some parfait,"  they say, "hell no, i don't like no parfait?"  parfaits are delicious."

end of story.
thanks donkey.

grapefruit & greek yogurt parfait

1/2 grapefruit, peeled & segmented
3/4 cup plain or vanilla greek yogurt
1/3 cup granola
honey to taste {optional}

layer yogurt in bottom of a mason jar or glass dish.  top with segmented grapefruit slices and granola. drizzle with honey if desired.

blueberry-orange oatmeal breakfast cups

as we prepare to start 2015, focus begins to shift to healthy eating once again.  after a solid month and a half of holiday parties, extravagant dinners, and boozy brunches, i am more than ready (after new years eve & day of course) to trade all that in for a more balanced approach as i reset and start to fuel myself properly.

beginning with breakfast.

pancakes off the table and oatmeal cups on the table.

blueberry-orange oatmeal cups.

blueberry-orange oatmeal cups

3 cups old fashioned oats
3 bananas, ripe & mashed
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup fresh blueberries

preheat oven to 375F.  spray muffin tin with non-stick spray and set aside.
in medium bowl whisk together mashed bananas, milk, eggs, maple syrup, orange zest and vanilla.  add in oats and baking powder stirring to combine.
divide mixture in prepared muffin tin and top with each with blueberries. bake for 20-25 minutes.
enjoy.  xo.

yields: 12
adapted from my oatmeal chocolate chip cookie breakfast cups

Sunday, 28 December 2014

prosecco & preserves

this gives is an entirely different meaning to the typical toast & jam that we are accustomed to at our breakfast table.

yet with the holiday season in full swing still, and boozy brunches with family & friends at the forefront, you can now turn any bottle of bubbly into a holiday inspired cocktail with a little just a little jam.

Prosecco & Preserves

1 bottle of bubbly (champagne, prosecco, or sparkling wine)
jam (any flavour)  thinned out with a little water

stir 1 to 2 teaspoons of jam into each glass of sparkling wine before serving.
make beelines with peach jam, or mimosas with orange marmalade, or something festive with cherry preserves.

food network magazine - december 2014

Saturday, 27 December 2014

butternut squash & pesto lasagna

last night mr handsome made dinner.

i took a nap.

when i woke it was to a heavenly aroma of pesto and cheese.
(note: it customary that one should always be woken up like this.  new benchmark set)

what a sweet man.  xo.

also, you can consider this my retirement post.  it's clear the kitchen the can survive without me.

butternut squash & pesto lasagna

2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 butternut squash, diced
1 zucchini, diced
seas salt and freshly ground pepper
pinch of red pepper flakes
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (15-ounce) container part-skim ricotta cheese
1 (16-ounce) bag frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
7 ounces pesto (homemade or store-bought)
1 box no-boil lasagna noodles
2 cups shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated parmesan
fresh basil for garnish

preheat the oven to 350F.

heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.  add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes.  add the butternut squash and zucchini and cook, stirring, for 4-5 minutes more.
season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.  stir in the crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce; bring to a simmer.  cook, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes.  adjust seasonings as necessary.

in a large bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese, spinach, pesto and season with pepper.

spray lasagna pan with non-stick spray.  spread a little of the tomato sauce on the bottom of the pan.  lay 4 noodles across the bottom of the baking dish, overlapping by 1/2-inch.  spread 1/3 of the ricotta and pesto mixture evenly on top.  sprinkle with about a 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.  ladle about 1 cup of sauce on top.  repeat layering in the same order.  layer the top layer of noodles and drizzle with the remaining sauce, then sprinkle with the parmesan and remaining mozzarella.  cover with foil and bake in the centre of the oven until the sauce is bubbling around the edges, about 40 minutes.  uncover and bake 5 minutes more.  let stand 10 minutes before slicing.

adapted from
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