Thursday, March 28, 2013

Saskatoon Berry Spelt & Honey Scones

Do you believe we are easing into Easter weekend...already?  Holy man, a quarter of the year done.  Just like that.  Easter is one of my favourite holidays.  Being a chef, the Christmas season is too stressful and chaotic to really enjoy.  Easter is more my style - the snow is (finally!) melting, the birds are singing and the earth is letting out a long sigh, preparing to begin again.  Winter's bulk and baggage is a distant memory.  Easter is about fresh starts and new beginnings and eating countless mini eggs because it's impossible to just stop at one or one handful.  It's about dipping eggs in dye and braiding bread and oh my, the hot cross buns.  Easter is about forging forward - eyes bright, gazing ahead, wondering where life's journey will lead to next.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Ready: Raspberry & Cream Filled Angel Food Cake

“Spring drew on . . . and a greenness grew over those brown [garden] beds, which, freshening daily, suggested the thought that Hope traversed them at night, and left each morning brighter traces of her steps.”  ~ Charlotte Brontë

Let's usher in spring with a pretty cake, shall we?  Well technically it is spring, but in my neck of the woods there are still five foot snow banks in the front yard and flakes of snow not willing to give up just yet.  And so while we are waiting for warmer temps and the Great Spring Melt - my spirit doesn't care.  It has launched into the new season with abandon.  Many of you know that the last few months have been rather difficult for me, to put it mildly.  I am more than ready to kiss this season of the brokenhearted goodbye - along with all of those heavy, dark, sad days.  I'm ready for the fresh starts and bright hopes that springs brings with it.  I'm ready for rubber boots and rain showers.  I'm ready for longer days and a lighter heart.  I am ready

Monday, March 18, 2013

A Few Favourite Things For the Last Days of Winter

Hey guys, hope you are having a happy Monday.  It's been ages since I've shared some stuff I'm loving lately, so today is your lucky today!  I will be back later in the week with a scrumptious Angel Food Cake I whipped up for an early Easter celebration we held yesterday.  To be honest I just polished off a piece (before dinner - I'm horrible) and it's quite fabulous.  So, have a grand week - don't forget to celebrate the first day of Spring on Wednesday.  I'm still staring at five foot snowbanks in the yard, but eventually Spring will come to Saskatoon.  And I will be ready for it!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Chocolate Gingerbread Beer Bundt Cake

If I tell you there is dry mustard in this cake, will you believe me?  I hope so, because it's 100 percent true.  I know!  Dry mustard in a cake - who would have thought?  But it's one of the reasons I wanted to try this cake out.  Well, that and the beer.  Beer in cake too?  This is crazy talk.  I've put beer in bread and in barbecue sauce and down the gullet, but never in chocolate cake.  But 'tis the season of St. Patrick, so why not?  When you've been baking cakes as long as I have, it's cool to shake things up and see what the heck will happen.  I can tell you this cake started out by giving me grief, but there was a happy ending.  And that's all that matters, right?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Lentil & Kale Shepherd's Pie with Roasted Garlic Potatoes

This about the time of year when winter behaves like the beloved house guest that has overstayed their welcome.  You know the type.  Things start off really well - it's great seeing them again and catching up on old times.  You radiate in the coziness they bring with them - hauling out the blankets and DVDs you're too busy to watch in summer.  Copious amounts of tea (and chocolate!) are consumed as you settle in together over dark and cold nights.  Things are fine.  Things aren't perfect but you adjust to the dry skin, runny noses, the cold, cold car, and scarves wrapped around your face so only your eyes peek out.  But then, after FIVE months of this, you start to feel annoyed and grumpy.  The faults of the unwanted house guest are noticed and annoying. You don't want the cold, cold car and dry skin and sweaters any longer.  The parka has played its part, but it is time, now, to part.  There are no hard feelings, and without a doubt, the houseguest will return.  They always do.  A send off is in order, encouraged even, with a comforting bowl of lentils and potatoes.

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