Friday, October 26, 2012


I made another salad recently using broccoli, mushrooms and quinoa. When I buy a big bag of broccoli florets and a tub of sliced mushrooms from Costco, I try to find different ways to use them.  This salad keeps for several days and makes great lunches.



½ cup uncooked quinoa
3 cups of raw broccoli florets, chopped
1 green onion, chopped
¼ cup almonds, chopped
1 cup mushrooms, chopped


½ cup low fat plain yogurt
¼ cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp sugar or splenda
1 tbsp lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste


Cook quinoa according to cooking directions.  Let cool.  In a large bowl mixed the quinoa, broccoli, onion, almonds and mushrooms. 

In a separate small container or bowl mix the ingredients for the dressing.  Add the dressing to the salad and combine well.  Keep refrigerated until serving.  Serves 4 to 6.

Friday, October 19, 2012


With the tomato crop from the garden, I do look for different ways to use the tomatoes.  I like this chicken tomato saute as I can use several vegetables, I can prepare enough for several meals and you can serve it with rice, couscous, pasta or quinoa.

All of the ingredients in the frying pan and ready to simmer for the 30 minutes.


2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium to large onion, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
8 boneless skinless chicken thighs, eat cut into three pieces
4 to 6 tomatoes, quartered or chopped
1 tbsp capers
salt and pepper to taste


In a large frying pan, heat oil on medium high heat.  Add the onions, garlic and celery and saute for 4 to 5 minutes until the vegetables soften.  Add the chicken and saute for 2 minutes.  Reduce the heat to low, add the tomatoes and capers, mix all of the ingredients and cover with a lid.  Cook for 30 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.  Serves 4 to 6 people.

Friday, October 12, 2012


I don't buy portobello mushrooms often.  To me they are meant to be stuffed, eaten in place of a burger as you can substitute a grilled portobello or just grilled after being marinated.  The following recipe is for grilling marinated portobello mushrooms.  I served this along with grilled corn and chick pea salad for supper one evening.  I made a number of mushrooms which will be eaten in the following days.

Mixing up the oil,vinegar, onions and garlic.

Mushrooms marinating.

After grilling on the BBQ.

Part of supper --- with a cob of corn and chick pea salad.


4 to 6 portobello mushrooms
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp dried onion

1/3 cup feta cheese


Clean mushrooms and place on a medium size plate or baking sheet with the gills facing up.  Mix the ingredients except the feta cheese in a bowl.  Spoon over the mushrooms and let marinate for an hour.  You can store them in the fridge while marinating.  Heat the BBQ to medium high heat.  When the mushrooms are ready to grill, sprinkle the feta cheese over the mushroom caps and grill on the BBQ for 10 to 15 minutes.  You can also bake these mushrooms in the oven at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes.   Serves 2 to 4 people.

Saturday, October 6, 2012


While shopping for a new pairs of Salomon trail running shoes, I came across this brand of clothing made by a company called Icebreaker

First, let me fill you in on the running shoes.   These running shoes are made for running on trails that have tough footing.  I don't run on rough trials and bought this specific model of shoe for when it will get icy outside on the walking paths, sidewalks or the streets and I need to have some grips on my shoes when walking the dog.  These shoes have cleats and I wore a pair last winter and really found them great for walking.  I wore the cleats down on one side of each shoe as I overpronate.   I don't wear them if there is lots of snow but do wear them when it is icy outside.

While in the store, I wandered over to the women's running and walking clothing area.  The sales person whom I have known for many years, steered me to a new brand of clothing that the store is carrying.  The clothes included base layers, hoodies, and tee shirts, The clothes are great for layering and are made using merino wool from New Zealand.  What peaked my interest was that each piece of clothing has an unique code and you can connect the clothing you bought with an individual farm or a group of farms that sheared this wool.  I bought a top and bottom base layer and a hoodie and I traced my wool used in the clothing to the farms that sheared the sheep.  I think this is pretty neat.  I read about the farms, the farmers, their families, saw photos of their dogs and their land.  What a great way to sell clothes!

I have copied some of the background information on merino wool that the company uses.

The merino is one of the world’s most ancient breeds of sheep. And one of the toughest.
Very different to a regular sheep who chews grass in the lowlands, our merino live in the extremes of New Zealand’s Southern Alps. Regular sheep would freeze to death up there.
But the merino’s fleece is built for extremes – breathable in summer, insulating in winter, yet exceptionally soft and lightweight.
We’ve pioneered the use of merino wool in the wilderness since 1994, and now we’ve fused nature and technology to create merino layers for the outdoors, for performance sports, and for the city.


Friday, October 5, 2012


After seeing this recipe in a newspaper this past August, the DH reminded me that I hadn't yet made a peach cobbler this year and as peaches were still available, I should consider baking a cobbler.  The combination of peaches and blueberries was too good to pass up.   After getting a supply of peaches and berries, I made the cobbler.  You can also make this recipe using frozen fruit instead of fresh.

I used splenda instead of sugar in the recipe and only used 1/4 cup in the filling.  I also had to use two baking dishes as the large one would have been too full.  The second baking dish was a mini baking dish and served as the overflow dish.  The end result was a tasty cobbler according to the DH.  It met his expectations.

Berries and peaches.

Flour, sugar and other ingredients sprinkled on the fruit.

Mixing the cobbler dough

Dough spread over the fruit and ready for the oven.

Ready for sampling.




3 pound of ripe peaches (7 to 9)
2 cups blueberries
¼ cup white sugar or splenda
¼ cup brown sugar
2 tbsp lemon juice
¼ tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt
2 ½ tbsp flour


1 ½ cups flour
½ cup cornmeal
1/3 cup sugar or splenda
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
½ cup butter, chilled and cut into pieces
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk or one cup of milk with 1 tbsp of vinegar (soured milk)
1 ½ cups blueberries


Wash the peaches and cut each peach into 8 slices or more, leaving the skin on and discarding the pit.  Place the peach slices into an 9 X 13 dish along with the two cups of blueberries.   Sprinkle the sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon, salt and flour over the top of the peaches and berries and if you can try to stir the mixture.  Set aside.

To make the topping, combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder and salt in a bowl.  Add the butter and using a fork or pastry blender, mix the butter into the dough until it is crumbly.  Add the vanilla to the buttermilk or soured milk and combine.   Pour the milk over the flour mixture and mix it together but don’t over mix it as this is biscuit dough.  Fold in the blueberries.  The dough will be sticky to handle.  Using a wooden spoon, place a spoonful of the dough on top of the fruit creating nine mounds or so of dough on top of the fruit.  If you have more dough, then add it to the spaces between the mounds.   

Bake at 375 degrees F for 50 minutes or until the biscuits dough is golden brown and the fruit mixture is bubbling.  Let cool and serve with ice cream.  Store leftovers in the fridge.   Serves 6 to 8 depending on appetites.

Adapted from Globe and Mail, Aug 22, 2012