I have to admit I am usually terribly lazy and just use store bought salad dressings, even though I know I can make better!!! It had to stop, so I found a great recipe that has become my go-to, a Mustard Shallot Vinaigrette. [Read more…]
I made this Vanilla Orange Frosty drink as a special treat for the boys on the first day of school this year. It was a big hit! With the flavours of a Cream-sicle for breakfast how could it not be?? We now have it a few mornings a week, I even like to enjoy it on the patio before the kids wake up.
I am going to share with you my Artichoke Salsa recipe which my be the perfect girls weekend appetizer! Bold claim right?? I love it because you can make Artichoke Salsa the day before which make it the perfect appetizer recipe, all ready to go no day of prep! In fact this Artichoke Salsa recipe is better that way, the flavours meld together! This appetizer is packed with artichokes, olives and tomatoes and is perfect served with crackers or tortilla chips. Trust me, bring this appetizer to your next get together and you will be the boss!
I have brought this several times to my sorority meetings and a few ladies weekend retreats and have never had leftovers, which is a shame since it is so yummy when spread in a turkey sandwich! Another winner recipe to serve for a girls get together is my Watermelon Feta Salad!
The prep work is just chopping up all the ingredients and then pop it into the fridge overnight. The next day all you need to do is serve in a pretty bowl with crackers and chips. Easy peasy, right?
For all that I have been raving that ladies will love this I must admit my husband found this recipe and makes it for the guys at the firehall. They use it as a condiment in turkey sandwiches.
Artichokes, the heart of the whole recipe….did you see what I did there? LOL
- 1 cup artichoke hearts, drained
- 1/4 cup pitted green olives
- 1/4 cup pitted black olives
- 1/4 cup peperoncini pickled peppers
- 1/2 cup roma tomatoes-try to remove all the seeds and juice
- 4-5 garlic cloves minced
- 1 handful of fresh basil, shredded
- 2 tablespoons mayonaise
- Start chopping! I like to have a nice even dice on all the ingredients so I do it by hand but it could be done also in the food processor, if careful not to over process.
- Add the mayonnaise and shredded basil. Refrigerate overnight for best flavours
- Great tip - If you have leftovers they are delish in a sandwich, turkey and swiss is may fave.
This watermelon and feta salad is a bright and refreshing summer salad that is quick and easy to make. It looks so fresh and everyone will be asking for the recipe! I know because I had to have the recipe after I tried it and I am posting this because I have a friend who wants to make it for a BBQ!
I have to give credit to my good friend Genevieve, shemakes the best salads. I know I can always ask her to bring a salad and she will bring something different and delicious. I don’t ever make a salad if she is coming because she can just do it better!
This watermelon and feta salad is so refreshing and colourful and she guaranteed me it was easy peasy to make. I needed to bring something to a teacher appreciation lunch so I made it and brought it and everyone loved it and thought I was a rock star. Sweet (and salty) victory for me!
So I decided to be totally tacky and made her bring an appy to a mommy play date lunch and then I made the salad! To be fair her appetizer was really good so she looked awesome no matter what!
- 5-6 cups of watermelon cut into chunks, rind removed (about 1 medium melon)
- 1/2 cup of feta cheese coarsely crumbled
- 1 lemon juiced (reserve) and zested
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 small handful of fresh basil leaves shredded
- sprinkle of sea salt and fresh ground pepper
- To make the dressing add the lemon juice, salt and pepper to the olive oil and set aside.
- Gently toss the watermelon cubes with the feta, basil and lemon zest.
- Add the dressing just before serving.
- The salad can be prepared a few hours before serving and refrigerated. Just add the dressing right before serving as the watermelon will get 'soggy' if it sits in the dressing too long.
Summer time and the fresh produce is fine! I don’t grow zucchini as my son wants pumpkins and I only have room for one vine snaking across my lawn but I do love me some zucchini. I grabbed several at the farmers market to make a salad for a sorority dinner and also for when my chef relatives came for dinner.
Side note ramble – it is hard having a chef brother married to a chef, what do you make??? I think they might have liked this salad because I saw they made zucchini ribbons for Diner en Blanc.
So to get back on point this recipe is beautiful to look at, relatively easy to make and chefs will eat it! This recipe is serves 4-6 easily if not more.
My boys love reading (see previous post), it has been part of our bedtime routine since they were infants. As a child bookworm myself I couldn’t be happier knowing what a great lifelong gift the love of reading is. Hubby was not a big reader when we met and now he gets super grumbly when he finishes a book and doesn’t have another one in the wings. So do I mind that I hear ‘Pleeeease just one more story’ at least once every night? Not at all, I usually give in once per kiddo. Little do they know I have allotted time for the begging of an extra book when I tell them it is bedtime. I know they will always want a little extra time to snuggle up and read.
Recently we have made Mondays our library day and the boys look forward to picking their books and DVDs for the week. Bug has just discovered the Mr. Men books and is popping a few into his book bag every week. Smashie loves board books about trucks and now ‘reads’ me some of his favourites with astonishing recall.
When summer rolls around some people brush off reading but not us, we sign up for our local library’s summer reading club(keener move). This year my boys were the first kids to submit their full cards (super keeners!) and I had to hold them back insisting that reading 40 books in 7 days was a bit much, even for me! Bug was asking for extra stories at daycare to help fill in his card. He is a wee bit competitive and when he saw the prizes they had this year for draws he was so excited. Not sure where he got the ‘OMG there are prizes I must be apart of this awesomeness-gene’ from but I believe it is passed down from the mother. (oh one day I will truly divulge my crazy contest side to you all). Both boys very first prizes ever were board books in the summer reading club when they were toddlers, I was so proud!
So this week the boys proudly presented their filled in cards to the librarians and received their stickers. They were so excited to show how hard they had worked to the librarians and loved all the fawning over their reading prowess. Luckily they didn’t hear a grumbly, under his breath comment one of the staff made about how it should really have been just one book a day. Dude, I am instilling the love of reading over here-don’t squash their enthusiasm! I am and always will be the biggest keener and I love that my kids take after me in that respect! Read on my little boys, it is a gift that will serve you well over your lifetimes.
Do your little ones love to read? Does your local library have a summer reading program?
Check out the fun ‘windsock’ I made to decorate for Canada Day. If you can spray paint and use a glue gun then you too can make this! Really the hardest part will be finding a big can to use, I used a big warehouse pack sized coffee can. This craft could be ANY colour, pattern, celebration you want it to be. I would LOVE to see your windsock if y0u make one! [Read more…]
With the long winter behind most of us I am excited to get some seeds started indoors. Smashie and I planted some pumpkin and watermelon seeds last week and popped them in the mini green house. I can see two of them have started to sprout and hope to have more come along in the next few days.
Outside the garden is turned over and hubby added compost and mushroom manure so we are off the the races. We had planted some spinach seeds inside a few weeks back which we moved outside last week and added some lettuce in the garden at the same time. The boys and I were excited to see rows of little sprouts popping through the soil. I looked at it today and am wondering how much salad I really think we are going to eat!
For those of you new to the blog, I am not the best gardener and I make lots of mistakes but I love it and it brings my family such joy. Just look at how proud Smashie is just planting seeds on the back step! I hope you will follow along, if you have a great tip to share about anything I am doing please dive in—any advice is greatly appreciated!
Just a picture of the world’s cutest veggie platter! My friend Genevieve has been honing her mommy skills and blew me away with this veggie-viper. I was amazed as she is soooooooooooooo (yes that many o’s are needed) NOT crafty.
She made this super easy to make vegetable plate to take it to the next level. The nice part-it really takes no special skills or extra time and it looks awesome!
Really the picture shows it all but just a few quick how-tos –
The snake is sliced cucumber with small pieces of red pepper for eyes and a thin slice of carrot for a tongue. They are held in place with tooth picks, so you will want to make sure no little ones want to eat the head—why do they always go for the weirdest part? Add rest of veggies around snake.
See I told you it was easy peasy! It would still be cheaper than a store bought veggie tray plus it would be fresher. Be a super mom at your next party. I will be bringing this this to pre-school next time Mrs. B asks for a snack mom on a special day!
(PS I have witnessed Genevieve ‘craft’ in the past and we have been friends for 15 years so I can say these things and she will know I still love her)