Thursday, August 9, 2012

Scallopinis!



This meal is something so easy that I made it as my afternoon activity with my 3  1/2 year old daughter! She loved it! It was messy, she was in control, and she got to eat her own creation and serve it to mommy and daddy as well!

This recipe (when I make it) takes me 15 min, 20 max. I highly suggest this for any parent to do with their kid. It's a hands on chemistry experiment, craft session, and montessori moment all rolled up in one, AND you get dinner on the table! There is pride involved as well as passion for the kids,  as well as empowerment and confidence building with when they are making dinner! 

I must note, however, that if you DO decide to involve your little one(s) in the preparation of the meal, be sure to have some self talk involved in the lines of : 

"I am ready to clean up a bigger mess than if I was cooking this alone. I am doing this to involve my child and allow him/her to experience ________ so I need to be patient and nurture that. I know if I was making this dish myself, it would take half or even 1/3 of the time it is taking me to do it with my munchkin, but it is the process that is more important" :) you get my drift!

I had a few "breathing it out" moments like when she cracked the egg and half of it landed on the fridge and the rest on the floor. Or when she decided to massage the meat in the breadcrumbs taking off all the breadcrumbs she had just layered on so nicely, leaving the meat patched and blobby… as well as the rest of the breadcrumbs in the plate... but it was edible and she was proud so I breathed through it and explained why we need to leave it on straight and showed her the burned and hardly browned areas because of the uneven breading. PHEW!


FUNDABBLER FACT

When you think of doing this, you will want to do this recipe all the time because it's so amazingly easy! You can substitute any meat as long as the cut is thin scaloppinies. 




INGREDIENTS

Abut 6 scallopini slices - any meat you like, veal, turkey, chicken etc.
about 1.5 - 2 cups breadcrumbs
3 - 4 eggs (depending on how much lands on the floor :D)
Parsley - about 1.5 tablespoons
salt and pepper to taste
Oil like grape seed, canola, basically oil for frying. 

INSTRUCTIONS

Break and beat your eggs

 


add your parsley and salt and pepper to your bread crumbs.



Heat the oil in your pan and start dipping! Egg, breadcrumbs, egg then breadcrumbs again and then fry! about 2 min on each side and it's cooked through! 




Be sure you have your sides, like veggies and pasta/rice whatever ready before you start frying your meat. it is so quick, you the rest will stay hot. 


We had spaghetti (my daughter's pick) with green beans. 



Then serve


and ENJOY!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Marilou's Mango and Avocado Salad

This is a fabulous, fresh and nutritious salad that my friend Marilou taught me last year. It is quick, easy, and super good for you. 

FUNDABBLER FACT

"If you buy unripe mangoes, put them in a paper bag in a dark place and they will ripen within a few days. Eat ripe mangoes raw for maximum vitamin C content, or eat them with a little fat such as a whole yogurt or in a salad dressed with olive oil, to better absorb their carotenes" - 100 Best Health Foods  
This is a tip you can use to eat all high carotene content foods (usually yellow/orange foods) with some fat, because carotenes are fat solubles so it is through fats that they are broken down and better absorbed into your body! 



INGREDIENTS

Mango - 1 large
Avocado - 1 
Basil - Fresh about a handful chopped
Olive oil - a generous drizzle
Tomato - either 1 large tomato diced or a pint of cherry tomatoes halved
Salt and Pepper to taste
Lime - juiced freshly directly onto avocado (for flavor as well as avoiding oxidising of avocado)

Serves 2-3 as a side 1 as a meal 
Takes about 15 min to make

INSTRUCTIONS

Peel and cut your avocado into cubes


Peel and cut your mango into cubes


Cut your tomatoes


Chop your basil


add you Olive oil and salt and pepper


Add your lime juice



 Mix it all together and get ready to serve



ENJOY! 


PS Aren't Gerber daisies just BEAUTIFUL!? They are absolutely my favorite flower! I always say, the color they have is so rich you think it will be left on your finger when you touch its bright petals.




Thursday, July 19, 2012

Salad Swap - 2012




So when I had first come to Montreal, one of my friends, Ms. DB, and I got together and made a good 5 BIG batches of salads (pre baby so the variations were endless as was our time) and split the goods. We had lunches for the whole week and it was fabulously fun to do. Since then, we have had kids, and our time is limited and less spontaneous. I decided, in the spirit of our salad ceremonies with Ms. DB, I would make something similar for the busy mom: A SALAD SWAP! What is that you might ask? Every participant brings with them a HUGE batch of a yummy salad to have at dinner with the other girls. We then split the leftovers and take them home for lunch/dinner the next day to share with our families. Ideally you share your recipes, (we did through e-mail) so everyone can reproduce your concoctions.

With kids, we talk less around the table, we do less activities, honestly it was a fabulous excuse to see the girls (sans bébé) and spend some "efficient" time together. It was a blast! Hope you get inspired to plan one of these for your group of friends!

I have posted an overview of what we had. Merci les filles! :)

Cutting the bread. The ladies have arrived!


I made these as my "flowers" (vegetable centrepieces) lettuce and cauliflower with grape tomatoes and radishes in my vase. Fun!



I just bought this so I, too, can make SPA WATER! Love it! So much easier than filling up the pitcher all evening long. It holds 7.5 L of liquid.

In this I had:

Fresh mint leaves (about 3 branches)
Cucumber (1/2 an English cucumber)
The juice of 1 lemon
The juice of 1 lime
1 lemon sliced
1 lime sliced

DELISH and REFRESHING! 


For the alcoholic drink:
I also made a Sangria:

1 bottle Rosé wine
raspberries (1 cup)
Sliced Peaches (1 large peach)
Sliced Nectarines (1 large)






Appetisers, just a few for the guests to munch on while we waited for everyone to arrive.


Here are just a few of the salads the girls brought.:
A Chorizo Tomato salad




A Feta and Tomato Salad w Couscous


A Bean Salad



A delish Lentil Salad


A VERY simple Carrot Raisin Salad I made along with my Salad Olovieh.


It was:

about a dozen large carrots shredded by my food processor (about 2 min)
1 cup of sultan raisins
Apple cider vinegar
Olive oil
Salt
pepper
STIR! 


For Dessert I made "Safe" cookie dough truffles. I got the recipe from Bakerella who got it from Lindsey Landis' Cook book "The Cookie dough Lover's Cook Book"



I also made a round fruit salad. Because it was a salad swap!


NOTE: I obsess over melon ballers. I don't know why. I love them almost  like I love salt and pepper shakers. So I balled: 

1 Pineapple (a MESS, did not like that experience)
1 Cantaloupe balled
1 Honeydew balled
2 cups blueberries
1/4 cup dark maple syrup


I like to make a "favor" for everyone to have when they leave home. Originally I made these spoons as place markers for everyone to sit around the table. I bought bamboo spoons. 
SPOON STORY: 
So originally I was looking for copper I was going to engrave my guests' name on the strips, then hammer the plaques into the spoon. I could not find copper strips for the life if me in Montreal. I know it exists, I just have no idea where to look SO, I thought and I thought. I remembered my dad's chip soldering tool he had. When I was growing up, I would use it to burn designs into wood scraps in the garage while my dad worked on projects over the weekends. It was fun, but now actually useful! My husband also has one of these tools (yes very Oedipal, I don't want to hear it). I stole his soldering iron, mind you I did use an old tip so I'm not so mean. I burned each person's name into the spoons. If doing this your iron needs to go up to 440degrees to burn into bamboo. Be careful and have fun!


I bought a packet of rosemary, lavender buds, as well as a sweet colored ribbon to tie the two together. 




TA DAM!



We had a blast. I loved it! Hope you have the desire to do your own Salad swap! I look forward to posting another summary of a Salad Swap next year! 

ENJOY!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Tangy Kale Salad - Tru Foods Inspired



This is a recipe I copy cat-ed from True Foods  in Scottsdale, Arizona. I fell in LOVE with this restaurant. It was fabulous and I loved EVERY thing I got from the menu. My favourite part was the side of kale salad and sweet potatoes! I had a fabulous Turkey burger, veggie pizza, my hubby had the bison burger, I had the tempura wrap, my mom had the curry salad. The juices are fab too. Nice to have an alternative to soda. The concept of the rest is local, organic, and healthy! FABULOUS! So refreshing to sit and eat something that I would make at home. I loved having that while visiting. I felt so guilt free when my daughter ate her lunch. We had a blast. Seriously!

 


Side note: This is located in the Scottsdale Quarters plaza that is just across from Kirland Commons. Fabulous area. We had play time in the water spot right in front of the rest. Incentives to finish and play. :) No but absolutely beautiful. If in the area, do check out not only the resto, but the water play area. 

FUNDABBLER FACT

Fabulous things about this recipe: the kale, of course is great for detoxing, fibber, folic acid. The Parmesan, is one of the highest protein cheeses.  The olive oil, raw, gives it great omega 3 fatty acids. The raw garlic fabulous for the heart and the list goes on. Not only delectable, but fabulous for the body! 

FUNDABBLER FACT II

True Food is based on Dr. Andrew Weil's anti-inflammatory diet and food pyramid. where antioxidants are the star!


Takes about 20 min to make
Serves 4-6 people

The original recipe is found here



I liked it more as follows:
Kale  - 1 bunch (about 4 heaping cups once chopped, 6ish branches) cut into strips (chiffonade)
Lemons - 3 juiced (or 2 REAL juicy ones)
Crushed Red Pepper - 1 tablespoon
Parmesan Cheese - 1/2 cup - 2/3 cup,  grated (I used a HUGE handful)
Bread Crumbs - I used 4 small slices of breads made into crumbs. If using ready made about .5 cup
Walnuts (raw) - about 1 handful
Olive Oil - 1/2 cup 
Black pepper - I used about 2/3 tablespoon freshly crushed
Fresh garlic clove crushed - 2 



INSTRUCTIONS

Wash and cut your kale into thick chiffonades.



Grate and add your Parmesan



make or use ready made bread crumbs




grind or crush your walnuts



add in your crushed red peppers



Juice your lemon



add your olive oil to the juice.



Crush your garlic or mini microphone it and add to your dressing mix



Salt and pepper to taste



Mix and ENJOY!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Salad Olovieh - Persian Potato Chicken Salad




Salad Olovieh is something my whole family loves. We normally take to 13 bedar or any other pick-nick. This and Kotlet are our travel "car foods". It is also commonly found on our table as an hors d'oeuvre with some freshly sliced baguette. We eat salad olovieh, unlike American potato salad, as a sandwich filler. We normally use it to fill pita bread or sliced baguettes. Pick your favourite bread to enjoy this with. Great summer dish and super popular at parties among all ethnicities! Even my father-in-law who refuses to eat peas loved this dish!



FUNDABBLER FACT

Some families make this recipe with lemon juice instead of vinegar. Make it either way. I personally prefer it with vinegar, however I know my aunt likes it better with lemon juice. It's really a personal preference. A second family debate is between the size of the cut of the foods. I like all the ingredients to be the size of the green pea, but others like the chunky pieces. Do as you wish, personally it's all delish!


INGREDIENTS
Potatoes - 12 large (size of a medium fist) chopped
Eggs - 24 hard boiled diced
Frozen Peas - 2 cups  thawed and drained
Chicken - 1 rotisserie chicken shredded no skin
Persian pickles - 4 cans (11 oz each)
Mayonnaise - 30 heaping tablespoons (about the size of 1 Costco mayo container 1.9L)
Vinegar (white or red wine) - 1/2 cup
Salt and pepper to taste


Serves about 30 (you can easily half this recipe)
Takes about 2 hours to make (depending on how quickly and small you chop)

INSTRUCTIONS

Boil your eggs, Cook your potatoes



Let your peas thaw out after a few rinses of warm/hot water.



While your eggs and potatoes are cooking shred your chicken (you can chop it into small cubes my Amoo F. (uncle) does that. Personal Preference).



Chop your pickles to the size of your peas. 



Everything should be cut to the size of your peas.



Mix your vinegar, salt and pepper with your mayo in a separate container. I usually put it in a zip lock tub and shake it together. It is easier to get the "dressing" consistent and easier to mix into your food.


Once your eggs and potatoes are cooked, peel them both and start chopping away.




Mix in your eggs and potatoes with your chicken along with your pickles.



Add your dressing mix (Mayo, vinegar salt and pepper)




Serve with some Pita bread, baguette or your favourite bread and
ENJOY!