Thursday, June 24, 2010

Garden explosion!

My garden is very, very happy.

The weather has pretty much been ideal, so everything is growing like crazy! Plus there's been enough rain I haven't really had to worry about watering.

Tomatoes! Ripen! RIPEN!!!

OK, probably not yet. But soon enough!

I've lost control of the tomatoes, again. I tried, I really did, but man, you miss a couple of days and bam, the tomatoes are out of control.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Week 24: Rainbow Peanut Noodles

This recipe? Awesome. I don't know why it took me so long to discover the deliciousness of peanut based dressings. This is a terrific recipe for using up the random vegetables you have stashed in the fridge, too, there's lots of things that would work really well.

I made a batch of this and stuck it in the fridge to eat for lunch at work this week. I tossed everything together, including the dressing, which in retrospect I wouldn't do again - the noodles wind up absorbing the dressing, and they are good, but I think I would like it better freshly dressed. So next time I'll toss together the noodles and veggies, but pack the dressing seperately.

Instead of chicken, I used tofu, which works very nicely (I'm not really a tofu fan, but for me it works here because frankly you don't even really realize it's there). I also cut way back on the garlic, since 8 cloves of raw garlic seemed like a good way to scare the hell out of my new coworkers. I increased the soy sauce in the dressing, but I didn't really measure the ingredients and so wound up I think adding way more peanut butter than the recipe calls for. Which meant on the first taste, it was too peanut-y. More soy sauce balanced it out nicely. Oh, and I used rice vinegar instead of the called for vinegar.

Definite keeper recipe!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Week 23: Cauliflower Cheese Pie

Wow, being back to work full time is taking some definite getting used to. I'm going to be making a lot of quick cooking recipes, I think, as I try to get dinner on the table within a half hour of getting home from work. And making lots of recipes that make large quantities of leftovers for lunches.

This week, I tried out a new recipe that was recommended somewhere or other as working well in the freezer. So I made it Sunday, froze it, and we ate it for dinner on Thursday.

Moosewood's Cauliflower Cheese Pie

Verdict? OMG SO GOOD. The potato crust is absolutely brilliant, and I plan to adapt it for other savory pie type things. The only change I would make is another egg or two, my version didn't have quite enough filling, but that's the sort of thing that's easy to play by ear when putting the pie together.

I'm making another version this week, a broccoli/carrot/cheddar one. Hopefully my new camera (YAY!) will be up the task and I can start posting pictures again!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Week 22: Baked Gnocchi in Tomato Gorgonzola Sauce

I have two words about this recipe: NOT GOOD. Canadian Living, you are usually so reliable! But, yuck!

Gotta get ready for work; hopefully I can blog properly in a few weeks once I get settled into a routine.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Week 21: Baked spring rolls

No photo this week, my camera appears to be on its last legs.

This week I made spring rolls, but baked instead of fried. They came out surprisingly well done that way. I used this basic recipe, except left out the meat:

I baked them on a Pampered Chef stone bar pan. I've discovered recently that preheating the stone is a great way to get things super nice and crispy in the oven. Get the stone nice and hot, and then dump, say, lightly oiled potato slices on it, and in about half an hour you will get amazing oven fries. So I tried the same thing with spring rolls (putting them onto the hot stone instead of a cold stone) and it worked extremely well, they were very nicely browned and crisp (I turned them halfway through cooking).

And hey, I guess this marks the halfway point! Yay! I am hoping to be able to continue - I am starting a new fulltime job next week, so there's going to be some big changes around here, and a lot less time for cooking. I'm going to be looking for a lot of recipes that I can toss together very quickly when I get home from work. And recipes that make large amounts of food for leftovers.

Friday, June 4, 2010


Pattern for these is found on Wee Folk Art. I painted the faces the same way I do the fairies, and added hair because I have a huge bag of wool fleece, so why not add hair?

I'm actually not entirely thrilled with the hats; I think I'm going to experiment with much smaller ones. I'd like to do a snow white/seven dwarfs set at some point, but I have a rather large lack of time at the moment!