Monday, 23 September 2013

Crispy-Baked Sweet Potato Fries!!!!

When I was first married I wasn't the best cook.  One time by poor husband had to eat the same stew for supper, then lunch the next day, then supper, then lunch.....yah, we had a talk about leftovers after that...

It wasn't until we got cable that my cooking improved.  Food Network!!!  I finally saw how food was supposed to look and taste.  I started trying new things, with some successes.  Then a friend told me about Kraft Canada's "What's Cooking" magazine.  It's a free quarterly magazine that gets sent to your home.  It is full of easy to make recipes!.  I remember that with the first magazine I received I tried almost all the recipes.  My husband was getting happier!!!

So several years later I still look forward to receiving my "What's Cooking" magazine!  This fall's edition is full of amazing recipes!  I've circled and highlighted at least a dozen!  Wahoo!!!  So here is one that I just had to try.

Crispy-Baked Sweet Potato Fries.  OH MAN, OH MAN!!!  So easy, and yet soooo tasty.  Dip the fries in a garlic aioli sauce (think Costco) and your taste buds are in HEAVEN!!!!!  So ya, go out and buy some Shake and Bake.....You'll thank me....and your family will thank YOU too.

Crispy-Baked Sweet Potato Fries
adapted from: Kraft Canada

What you Need:

2 yams or 3 sweet potatoes
3 TBSP of canola oil ( or any light tasting cooking oil)
2 eggs
1 pouch of Shake and Bake Extra Crispy
1/4 cup of fine crumbed bread crumbs

What you Do:

1.  Pre-heat oven 425 degrees F.

2.  Cover two baking sheets with tin foil.  Drizzle with canola oil.

3.  Peel potatoes (or yams) and cut into match-like sticks length ways

4.   Whisk eggs in a large bowl and add cut potatoes. Toss to coat.

5.  Empty the pouch of Shake and Bake into separate bowl.  In small batches add the potatoes into Shake and Bake; toss to coat.

*** about half-way through you may find the that Shake and Bake Coating mix starts to get clumpy.  Add the breadcrumbs into the bowl and stir mix.  This will make the coating mixture not as clumpy and you can get a nicer coating on your fries.

6.  Spread potatoes onto prepared baking sheets.  Bake until potatoes are tender-crisp, and golden brown.  Turn fries every 10 minutes and rotate baking sheets if you have one on a higher level than the other.

7.  Serve with a Garlic Aioli Sauce, or ketchup.  Enjoy!  I know I sure did.

Monday, 16 September 2013

Tortilla Pizza


Especially with late summer tomatoes.

Yep, a combo made in heaven....

especially on a pizza......

This here pizza is one of the easiest pizzas you can make.  David and I both love this one...which is amazing as there isn't a stitch of meat on it.  OH MY!  Ok, we are not vegetarians by any means, but this pizza doesn't need meat to make it outstanding!

It starts off with a tortilla as its "crust". So perfect on a rushed week night, or when some friends pop over unexpectedly  (come do that and see if we make this for ya....I dare ya....)  Anyways,  You put a tortilla on a pizza pan.  Smear some olive oil on top, top with very simple toppings, and 10 minutes or so in the oven you got an amazing appetiser or supper dish at your hungry fingertips...hmm... I mean....

Just eat it already!!!!!

Tomato and Basil Tortilla Pizza
adapted from Kraft Canada

What you Need:

1 large tortilla (any flavor you like)
1 tsp, olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese
1-2 Roma tomatoes ( or 1 large tomato, or 1 cup sliced in half cherry tomatoes)
2 TBSP of Parmesan shredded cheese
4 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced.
1/4 tsp of ground black pepper

What you Do:

1.  Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees F

2.  Place tortilla on baking sheet and brush with oil.  Top with all remaining ingredients EXCEPT the basil.

3.  Bake 8-10 minutes, or until tortilla is crisp and cheese is melted.

4.  Sprinkle with basil.


Friday, 13 September 2013

FamilyLifeRecipes #2 - First Day of School

The summer breezes may still have been blowing, but this week was back to school.  For many moms last Tuesday was full of excitement and anxiety......and watching the clock.....

Did they like their teachers?  Were there any friends in the same class?  Were they nervous? sad? scared?  Did they need me?

Believe me, those questions darted in my mind all day.  My oldest son was starting grade one and it was his first "full" day experience. I was in need of distraction... I was so thankful that it was full of friends, coffee, and encouragement.

"Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you." 1 Peter 5:7

There was much "casting" on Tuesday....hourly, minutely, continually.....and that is okay.  God knows what we are trying to express to Him.  So with prayer, and friends my day went by.  At pick up time I wasn't anxious.....curious...yes.....I had given my God my prayers....He knew what I needed.

My little guy has a wonderful teacher, there are some friends in the class.....He didn't "need" me....but he smiled big time when our eyes met at the end of day bell.   I smiled back.....feeling cared for...

Monday, 9 September 2013

Mustard Bean Pickles

I am amazed with my little garden!  In mid July it was totally decimated by a hail storm that covered our lawn like a winter's day.  I cried over it and didn't think it would recover....but plants are resilient....

A month and a half later I was harvesting a bounty I did not expect.  The peas didn't come out amazing....but the yellow beans....SO MANY!  And my tomatoes are wonderful.  The beets and carrots I've not harvested yet....but they too are looking good.

So to preserve my little garden's bounty I could only do one thing that would do the little miracle beans justice....I pickled them!

But not just any pickle...a family heirloom.....Grandma Ellie's Mustard Bean Pickles.  They are up there as a favorite of mine ever since I was introduced to German Noodle and Pickle Fridays.  And that was 14 years ago.......Grandma Ellie doesn't eat meat on Fridays so out comes the noodles and pickles.  And I fell in love!  These are amazing.  And pretty easy to make.  Funny thing....this is the first time I've made them....Grandma has always kept me stocked up.  :)

So here it is....

Grandma Ellie's Mustard Bean Pickles

What you Need:

5 pounds of fresh yellow wax beans, chopped into bite size pieces (approx 10 cups)

**** you may use 6-7 cans of store bought canned wax beans.  But fresh is best. You don't have to do the above step if you used canned beans.

1 cup of all purpose flour
3 cups white sugar
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup dry mustard
2 Tbsp celery seed
3 Tbsp mustard seed
2 Tbsp turmeric
1 tsp of salt

6 cups of white vinegar

What You Do:

1.  Cook beans for 20 minutes in simmering salted water; drain

2.  Mix all dry ingredients into large pot.

3. Add vinegar and whisk until smooth, bring to a boil on medium high heat

4.  Add beans and bring back to a boil.  Cook for 5 minutes, stirring continually.

5.  Remove from heat and immediately pour  mixture into sterilized, hot jars.  Wipe jar rims and place hot sealers on rim and tighten on sealer rings.  Let sit undisturbed for 24 hours.  Make sure that the sealers have sealed properly.  

6.  Let season for a couple of weeks and then enjoy!  Store up to a year.