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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Canning Kitchen : Beer Hive Grainy Mustard


The first thing I ever canned was homemade pasta sauce.  It was work but I loved it.   We basically had enough tomato sauce to last an entire year.  It was awesome.   Unfortunately up until this past month I haven't tried canning anything else.  Canning does run in both my families though.  Both sides of my family make their own relish and my mother in law also makes her own pickles.   My wedding favour was actually two mini jars of relish one from each side of the family.  It was pretty neat.   That is something I love about canning it seems to be a family tradition.    Secret recipes passed down for generations, that people go nuts over.

Canning can seem pretty daunting at first though.  Don't be afraid,  buy this book.



This book has such a variety of recipes; jams, jellies, pickles, relish, mustard, preserves, sauces and more.   The recipes are straight forward and simple.   As stated in the title they are small batch sizes.  Most recipes are about 5-7 jars, varying from 1 cup to 2 cups, so you don't need to go buy bushels and bushels of fruits and veggies to tackle these recipes.   At least not until you are ready to triple these.    It's a great book to open you up to the possibilities of canning without getting overwhelmed about canning.  

Since getting the book I have tried Dill Pickles and the Beer Hive Grainy Mustard.    Both of which are sitting in my pantry, while I patiently but anxiously wait for them to be ready for consumption.   A co worker and I have some smoked sausages on order, so we are ready for that mustard. 

My list of recipes to try over the next two months includes her Pasta Sauce, Smoky Peach Barbeque Sauce, Salted Caramel Pear Butter, Strawberry Balsamic Jelly and a Four Orchard Chutney.   Doesn't that all sound amazing?!

Lucky for you, there is a chance for you to win this book along with a $100 gift card to Canadian Tire to get yourself decked out with some canning gear to get you started.  

Check out the rafflecopter below and take a peak at what my blogging friends canned as well.  

Jenny - The Brunette Baker - Blueberry Sauce
Heather - The Tasty Gardener - Triple Red Pickle
Robyn - What's Cooking on Planet Byn - Bread and Butter Pickles
Kristy - She Eats - Dill Pickles
Britt - My Daily Randomness - Raspberry Lemon Jam
Charmian - The Messy Baker - Orange and Blueberry Marmalade
Chelsea - Chelsea's Healthy Kitchen - Peach Jam
Gwen - Devour & Conquer - Tomato Red Onion Relish


Good Luck and remember #YESYOUCAN!





a Rafflecopter giveaway


This giveaway is open to all legal residents of Canada who have reached the age of majority at the time of the contest in the province or territory in which they reside. 

Winners must answer a skill-testing question. 

No purchase necessary to enter. 

Giveaway will run from Wednesday, August 26, 2015 to Wednesday, September 2, 2015. Winner will be contacted via email and displayed on Rafflecopter widget. Email address will never be given out to any third party or anyone for that matter. 






















Monday, July 6, 2015

Kelly's Bake Shoppe - My Solution for No Baking Time.



Sometimes life gets too busy.  It's not necessarily a bad thing but its just a busy where you might not be able to do everything you want or everything you would like to do.   I love baking and up until about a year ago I would always make my own desserts and even make desserts and cakes for other people.  Now with two kids under 3, there are times where I honestly just can't be bothered.  Bothered might not be the right word,  it is more not having a true sense of reliability that I will have the time without constant interruption.   I don't know about you but when I am making cakes, especially for other people I am a perfectionist and time is critical.  I hate to have things not turn out they way I want.    Luckily there are places out there that can make life easy for you, they are called Bakeries.    Ha, I know you know about bakeries,  I just haven't ventured to them very often.

Kelly's XO Bake Shoppe

I have found one Bakery though that I really like.  It's called Kelly Bake Shoppe.  It is a beautiful place located in downtown Burlington.   One of the great perks about this shop is it is vegan, gluten free, peanut free and healthier than most.  I don't need to buy vegan, gluten free or peanut free but it is nice to have a place that is like this for others that do have restrictions.  The nice thing about Kelly's is it is all these things while still being sweet, soft, chocolaty, chewy and decadent.  

Kelly's supplied me with a few treats but when I went in to pick them up I couldn't help but buy a few more cupcakes, a donut and some ice cream.  I packed up all the treats and headed up to the cottage for a few days.  My family is going to be happy when they see what I am bringing.

I am a sucker for donuts and had to try one. The donut unfortunately didn't make it up to the cottage. That was all for me.  I went with the coconut chocolate donut, as I am a sucker for both.   It's a cakey donut not a fried donut but it was so moist and delicious.  I honestly could have eaten a dozen.


I made sure to take one of each cookie.  A Chocolate chip, Snickerdoodle, World Peace Cookies and the Skinny Cookies.  I will tell you I am a cookie girl and these did not disappoint.  I made sure to spread the love to my little ones and they loved the skinny cookie.  A cookie sweetened with roasted banana is a cookie I have no problem giving them often.  


Let's talk cupcakes for a second.  The selection at Kelly's is insane.   There is a rather large selection and they all stare at you saying "eat me".  So pretty and unique, its hard to choose.  There are standard cupcakes they have every day and then daily features which will knock your socks off.    I left the bakeshop with 6 more than I had planned.  I got the following flavours, Chocolate coconut, Dulche de Leche, Cookies and Cream, Coffee Break, Vanilla, Red Velvet,  Blueberry French Toast and Mexican Chocolate.
We ate two the first night and then I froze six of them like they suggest if you are not able to eat them that day to be eaten a few days later.   Similar to the donut I fell in love with the Chocolate coconut as well as the Dulche de Leche.   I didn't even get a chance to take photos of the remaining six cupcakes because the family devoured them pretty quickly.



The final treat I split with the hubby was the mile high brownie.   Brownie on top of Brownie, HELLO,  you cannot go wrong with this.   He almost stole my half as it sat on the counter while a little one side tracked me.  I turned around just in time.


If you are in the Burlington area I highly recommend you check out this lovely shop, grab a cupcake, donut, cookie and bar and take a stroll along the lake.   I say all four because you won't be able to stop at just one.

Gotta go...it's time to head back to Kelly's Bake Shoppe.







Monday, February 16, 2015

Apple Carrot Loaf and a Virtual Baby Shower #babyfamilybites


 It is always fun to celebrate a new baby.   A fellow Canadian blogger Jan from Family Bites is expecting a baby boy in the next couple weeks so we are throwing her a Virtual Baby Shower.

I will take lack of sleep, teething and poopy diapers any day if I can cuddle with, laugh at and kiss my little babes.  My youngest is almost 7 months now and it has been a blast so far.   So I will say I have been blessed with a rather laid back, very chill happy baby.  I have 1000 photos to show you how easy I can make her smile.  I have even had several moms comment when I go to classes for my older one at how she just sits in her car seat and watches and waits.  She barely makes a peep.  She has always been a fairly decent sleeper and rarely fussy, even now with her first tooth coming in.   I may pay for all of this good behavior later but at least when she is older I can somewhat reason with her (hopefully? maybe? probably not?)

There is a lot of new precious moments coming up for Jan in the next few weeks, cuddles, smiles, giggles (something I am getting as I write this) and cries.   Hopefully she will also get lots of help from her older boys as they learn to take care of their new baby brother.  The rule is you can't start tormenting him until he is three.

Good luck Jan and All the best!!


I decided to make an Apple Carrot Loaf for today's shower from one of my favorite new cookbooks.
Check out what everyone else has cooked for up for Today.

Mardi from eat. live. travel. write made blueberry cheesecake macarons
Julie from Dinner with Julie made lemon scones
Heather from The Tasty Gardener made Cream Puffs with Caramel Cream and Chocolate Pretzel Top
Isabelle from Crumb: A Food Blog made Blackberry Meringue Bars
Jennifer from Seasons and Suppers made Baby Blueberry Beignets
Christina from Strawberries For Supper made Chocolate Madeleines
Aimée from Simple Bites made Roasted Turnip Hummus
Jenny from The Brunette Baker made Wild Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins
Liliana from My Cookbook Addiction made mini-cupcakes
Carole from The Yum Yum Factor made Beet and Blue Cheese Canapes
Charmian from The Messy Baker made Piglet Muffins
Amy from Family Feedbag made Marmalade Poke Cake
Brittany from My Daily Randomness made Caramel + Pumpkin Parfait
Meg from Sweet Twist of Blogging made Carrot Apple Loaf
Louisa from Living Lou made Maple Walnut Cookies
Libby from Libby Roach Photography made Butter Baked Good’s Peanut Butter Sandwich cookie
Robyn from Planet Byn made Milk & Cookies Shooters


Apple Carrot Loaf

(adapted from Huckleberry)

INGREDIENTS:
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (185g) a mix of all purpose flour/whole wheat flours.  (I did half and half)
  • 1 1/2 tsp wheat germ
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup grated peeled apple
Glaze
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2-3 tbsp milk

INSTRUCTIONS: 
1) Soak the raisins in a cup of warm water for 10 minutes or so.  Drain and set aside. 
2) Preheat the oven to 350F.   Grease or spray a loaf pan (9x5)
3) Place all the ingredients into a bowl and mix together.   Pour into the pan.  
4) Bake for 50-55 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.    Allow to cool in pan.   
5) Make icing : beat cream cheese in a medium bowl, then add icing sugar and vanilla.  Beat in milk to thin glaze out a bit.  
6) Remove loaf from pan and spread glaze over top.   

You don't have to add the glaze and this loaf is still delicious.  I just wanted one. 










Thursday, December 11, 2014

Peanut Butter Balls and the #GatheringsCookbook



Last Friday was my annual Mother/Daughter baking day with my Mom, Sister and our daughters. We have been doing this for several years now.   It is literally one of my favorite days of the year.   Our main baking agenda is butter tarts, which I oddly don't really eat but we do also try and make a few other things.  These other things are what I look forward to.  Our trick is to come up with a few no bake items to put together while the dozens and dozens of butter tarts are baking.  For some reason I love no bake desserts, especially when they are covered in chocolate.  

I recently was given a copy of the cookbook "Gatherings" .  A beautiful book by Jan Scott and Julie Van Rosendaal.    The book is full of a wide range of different recipes grouped together by occasions, like kids birthday parties, backyard barbecues, pizza parties, date nights, games nights and more. This book has everything appetizers, main courses, desserts, drinks and snacks.   It really encompasses a recipe for any gathering you might have.

Since Mother/Daughter baking day is technically a family gathering I decided it would be great to try a recipe from this book.   They also happen to have a perfect no bake recipe, "Aunt Kathy's Peanut Butter Balls".   I find you can never really go wrong with peanut butter balls (unless you happen to be allergic to peanut butter).   The peanut butter balls in this book are also a bit different, with the addition of dates and walnuts. This gives them a great twist of chewy and crunchy inside.  They were of course, delicious and the hubby complained I made him stop eating them so I could take some photos.   He can now proceed with eating.



This weekend I have plan to make two more recipes, Potatoes Dauphinoise and a Lemony Kale and Brussels Sprouts salad.  There are really just to many wonderful recipes inside to try.  Several of my blogging friends also got a chance to try out the book.  Check out their posts from the week to see more delicious recipes from this book.



Please be sure to check out these fabulous bloggers all week long as we celebrate Jan and Julie:

Monday

Tuesday
Wednesday
Isabelle from Crumb Blog
Stephanie from Clockwork Lemon
Valerie from A Canadian Foodie
Thursday
Friday
Christina from Strawberries for Supper
Louisa from Living Lou
Liliana from My Cookbook Addiction
Rhonda from Olive and Ruby
Jenn from Chocolate Shaving

Disclosure: I was given a complimentary copy of Gatherings for review purposes, courtesy of Whitecap Books. As always, any and all opinions and views are completely my own. This post contains affiliate links.




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