Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween

We've been eating a lot of leftover ham around these parts ... 


I took a break from the ham yesterday at lunch and went with a coworker to enjoy the buffet at Flavours of India.  They make some of the best samosas I have ever had.  I think I am obsessed with Indian food. 

I am also pretty into oatmeal with delicious toppings, as I am sure you already know.

I made my oatmeal today with unsweetened chocolate almond milk, and topped it with strawberries, coconut, almond butter and chia seeds.

Off to hand out candy, eat pizza and watch scary movies - Happy Halloween everyone!

What do you/did you eat for dinner on Halloween?
Are you/did you hand out candy?

I am giving the kids Old Dutch popcorn twists,  chocolate, fuzzy peaches and lollipops!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Ham Dinner & Cracker Brittle

Last night I cooked a ham dinner because I couldn't wait to try the roaster that my dad got me for my birthday.  It was a plug in roaster from Costco, that sits on the counter.  I was super impressed with it; it was like having a second oven.  I always find that when I roast something large like a ham or turkey, I run out of space in my oven.  This was so much more convenient, and it was also easy to clean.

I tossed some apple juice and cloves into the bottom of the roaster, then rubbed the ham with brown sugar and roasted for 2 hours at 300 F. 

I served it with homemade apple sauce and mustard sauce, as well as scalloped potatoes and carrots.

I didn't realize how large the ham was, but there will definitely be ham meals all week!

I didn't make dessert, but we did snack on the cracker brittle that I made on Saturday.  This stuff is so easy, I am embarrassed to even post the recipe - but here you go ...

Cracker Brittle

1 sleeve of soda crackers
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup butter
350 grams chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400 F.  Lay crackers in a foil lined and sprayed baking pan.  Bring margarine and sugar to a boil, and then boil for 3 minutes.  Spoon the butter/sugar mixture over the crackers and bake for 6 minutes.  Turn oven to broil.  Sprinkle chocolate chips over the brown sugar crackers and then melt - watch closely!  Use the back of a spoon to spread the chocolate.  Cool in fridge or freezer then peel off the foil and break apart.  Store in the fridge.


This stuff is really good and tastes better than you'd ever expect!

Do you like brittle?  Have you ever made it?

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Currently ...

This meme has been floating around the blogosphere.  I recently saw it on Lisa's Yarns, and thought it would be fun to do on my blog.

Currently ...

feeling disheartened.

reading Catching Fire (the second book in The Hunger Games series).

longing for New York, as usual.

laughing at nothing yet, but hopefully at some great Halloween costumes in a few hours.

crying when I just can't help it.

looking forward to vacations this winter.  I would love one right now!

journaling never.  Does blogging count?

celebrating Halloween tonight. 

eating a lot of Korean food lately.

running on empty a lot of the time.

hoping to see my mom soon.

anticipating change.

planning a trip to New Orleans this winter/spring.

drinking something spicy & strong!

a plan.

to Janis Joplin.

making Kimchi Jigae.

What is your life like currently?
Feel free to tell me your "currently ..." in the comments if you wish!

Stuffed Eggplant

The other night Chris cooked stuffed eggplant for dinner.  We had a Costco mix salad on the side (some new one with Brussels sprouts, kale, etc.).

Basic Stuffed Eggplant

1 eggplant
1 T butter
1/2 white onion, chopped
4-5 large white mushrooms, chopped
ginger powder
curry powder
garlic powder
salt and pepper
1/4 cup fine bread crumbs
Swiss cheese

Cut the egg plant in half and hollow it out.  Chop up the insides of the eggplant.  In a pan, heat the butter.  Add the onion, mushrooms, eggplant insides and spices to taste.  Cook until tender.  Toss in the bread crumbs and cook for about a minute.

Put the eggplant halves on a parchment lined pan, and fill with the mixture. 

Bake for 15 minutes at 350 F.  Top with cheese and then bake or broil just to melt/brown the cheese.


You could easily jazz this recipe up with a protein of choice.  Next time we are having it with shrimp!

What are you up to this weekend?  
Are you going out to any Halloween/costume parties?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

10 on Tuesday

Random ramblings after a loooooong day ...

1)  I am having dreams about this.  Must.  Make.  Soon. 

2)  I wish I would have never discovered this site for clothing.  I love everything.  I am a sucker for online shopping!  No lines.  No annoying sales people.  Ahhhhh, bliss.  Going to pick up this and this from the post office tomorrow. 

3)  I woke up to a lot of snow this morning.  It makes me want to either hibernate, or take off somewhere hot so I can dance on the beach.  My moves were pretty sweet back in 2009.  They are even better now.  I could teach you, but I'd have to charge (I'm the one on the left ... looks like Heather on the right has some moves too)! 

4)  This site makes me miss New York even more than I already do, if that's even possible.  I love New Yorkers. 
5)  I am super excited for New Orleans, even though we're not going until Easter.  I can't wait to eat po boys, gumbo, fried chicken and grits, oysters, crawfish, beignets, and jambalya ... anything else I'm missing?  We might need to be rolled off of the plane!
6)  My BFF moved home from BC.  She was supposed to be there for about a year at least, but decided she missed me too much that it wasn't for her.  She's throwing a party on Friday - can't wait! 

7)  I treated myself to a manicure yesterday and picked out this lovely shade:

Too bad within 3 minutes of being home, I had destroyed the polish, and consequently had to spend about 15 minutes removing it, only to be left with green tinged nailsSexy.  Why do manicurists insist on 4 coats of paint (base coat, 2 coats of colour, and top coat).  It is too thick and never dries - ugh!  Last time I get a manicure.  Give me a massage, body scrub or facial instead, any day.

8)  Is it weird that I'm already planning what we'll cook this weekend.  Thinking of a sea food version of this with some of this for Saturday.  

9)  Ummmmm, are words really necessary?

Image from:
Hmmm, reminds me of lobster hot tub.  Chris wanted to boil babies, but I insisted on lobsters.  Perhaps we should have compromised with the above!?  Hehe, I kid, I kid (sort of).

10)  I am really itching to go to a movie in the theater.  Any recommendations?

What are some of your Tuesday things? 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Weekend Eats

On Saturday evening we made pork vindaloo (curry dish) which we served with basmati rice and naan bread.  I wish I would have written down the measurements, because it was really good! 

The pork was marinated in a mixture of red chilies, curry powder, turmeric, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, malt vinegar, garlic, ginger, and peppercorns.  It was then cooked with some of the marinade, as well as a bit of water, and some more curry powder.  Arrowroot powder and cold water was used as a thickener.  At the last minute we tossed in some spinach for colour.


I wanted to make naan bread, but realized too late that it would take 2 hours for the dough to rise, so store-bought naan it was.  After spreading a bit of butter on it, I put it in the oven for 3 minutes @ 400.

Last night I made lasagna (with spinach noodles).  We enjoyed it with garlic bread and Caesar salad.  



My favourite part of crème brûlée is the "brûléed" part.  This makes me think I should get some of the wider, shallower dishes, so that I can enjoy more of the crispy goodness.

Do you like crème brûlée?  Have you ever made it?  What did you cook this weekend?

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Fall Baking & Birthdays

I've been baking a bit lately.  First it was pumpkin pie brownie 'cupcakes'.  


Then I made some cake pops to enjoy after a special birthday dinner.


Wednesday was Chris' birthday, and since we had gone out for a couple birthday dinners on the weekend, we decided to order in.  We ordered from Viet Trung.


Yesterday my dad took me out for dinner to Red Lobster, where I had my usual - crab legs.

Now to decide what to cook this evening ...

What are you up to this weekend?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Fall Foodie Finds

I love trying new food products (real food, not junk), and so far this Fall I have come across a few.

I read about black garlic in one of the food magazines that I subscribe to.  I never thought I'd come across it in my city.

This stuff is tender, and melts in your mouth like roasted garlic.  It has been fermented and aged, and it has a more mellow flavour than regular garlic - sweeter, almost reminiscent of molasses.  I used it in garlic mashed potatoes this weekend, but am interested in trying it in an Asian recipe, as suggested on the package.

I didn't notice a big difference from regular garlic when I used it in the potatoes, however I only used one clove because I didn't know what to expect.  Normally I would use a lot more garlic than that, so I will try a recipe with more next time.

I love kale, and kale chips are not new; in fact, I made some of my own about a year and a half ago.  The problem is most kale chips I've had in the past, including those that I made, were "meh'.  These chips that I found at my local organic grocery store are the exact opposite.  They are addictive and full of flavour, just like potato chips.

I will definitely buy another bag when these are gone.

Because I am a HUGE coconut fan, I was excited to recently stumble upon coconut spread.  

I had never heard of such a thing before last week.  The ingredient list is short and natural with only coconut meat, coconut sweetener and coconut milk.


And ... if you aren't aware of the health benefits of coconut, Google 'em or read my post on coconut oil for a brief overview.  I believe that coconuts are miracle foods (much like all fruits, veggies and nuts, but perhaps even more so).  

I couldn't wait to try this spread so I busted into it ...

Yeah, I open jars by hitting them with the end of a butter knife first.   
What do you do?

Unfortunately I found this spread a little too sweet for my tastes, and more "fruity" than "coconuty" if that makes sense to anyone other than myself.  Although I probably wouldn't use this as a spread on toast or crackers, I do think it would be good in oatmeal

Another Fall foodie find - dry roasted black beans!


These taste very similar to peanuts, although they are much healthier (Google peanut toxicity if you are ever bored :-))

The highlights - In 1/4 cup they have 16g protein, 6g fiber, and 20% recommend daily Iron.

And on the topic of Fall finds ...


The leaves keep finding their way to the ground.  I thought I was done raking!  Seven garbage bags later, and I guess I'll have to go out and do it all again. 

Have you come across any new food products lately?  Have you ever heard of/tried black garlic? Dry roasted black beans?  Coconut spread?