Fresh from the Earth

There is nothing like a dark rainy day (and lately we’ve had plenty of them) to spark a yearning for roasted earthy veggies and stuffed chicken.

Here is our dinner purposed to bring some warmth and color back to our table: garlic butter shrimp, caramelized onions and a blend of mozzarella and cheddar cheese stuffed into chicken breast. As our side: sliced brussel sprouts, radishes and cecil red potatoes basted in olive oil infused with three crushed cloves of garlic then sprinkled with ginger powder, Sicily sea salt, and brown sugar before oven-roasting for 45 minutes and devouring on the spot.

Pesto Stuffed Chicken Breasts

I know, I know – this stuffed chicken was from Tuesday 😉 Classes are back in full swing, the weather has taken a surprisingly horrible twist back towards hot and humid summer, and I started a new job at RW&CO! It is a part time position that will replace my seasonal job at Cows, but until we close up for the winter on October 11th, I am going to be a busy girl! RW&CO has some really amazing pieces that I cannot wait to add to my closet at a very generous 50% employee discount!!! Eeek! I see my winter coat collection becoming much larger…

Pesto Stuffed Chicken:

2 Chicken breasts prepared for stuffing

2 tbsp butter

1 Portabello mushroom, thinly sliced

1/2 medium onion, diced

100 g of Prosciutto, thinly shaved and cut into small strips

100g of Genoa Salami cut into small pieces

3 tbsp pesto

3 small cloves of garlic, finely minced

50g of  thickly sliced mozzarella cheese, cut into small pieces

In a small sauté pan, melt butter on medium heat

Add mushrooms, garlic and onions – fry until soft

Remove from heat, add Prosciutto, salami, pesto and mozza and combine ingredients. Slowly begin to stuff the chicken breasts, using the smallest ingredients to fill the tip of the fillet, carefully compressing as much ingredients into the meat without putting to much stress on the chicken. Use toothpicks to ‘stitch’ the opening closed. Place in a lightly greased (olive oil) pan, bake at 350F for 25 minutes (pre-heat oven). The ingredients will begin to ease through the toothpicks and meat will golden brown on the top.

Garlic & Chive Red-skinned Smashed Potatoes:

4 medium sized red-skinned spuds

2 tbsp of butter

3 tbsp sour cream

1 tbsp real mayo

1 tsp of garlic powder

1/4 cup diced green onion

Salt & Pepper to taste

Wash spuds and chop into bite sized  pieces, leaving the skins on.

In a pot cover completely in water,  on high heat bring to a boil and over cook until potatoes are really soft (15-20 minutes, test with a fork)

Drain water, add butter, garlic, sour cream and mayo. Potatoes should be soft enough to roughly mash with a fork, thoroughly combine. Add green onion before immediately serving. Add S&P – enjoy!

Spud Love

Simple toppers: salt, ground pepper, butter

Local Red Spuds: Skins infused with flavor and fluffy meaty insides

Rubbed with olive oil and salt, baked at 350F for one hour

Ready to eat!

Local Salty Scotsburn Butter

Digging in

Nothing says desert like a glass of cold milk and Pillsbury oven-ready cookies 😉

By the time the heat of summer has finally left our apartment, I always start drooling over all of the lengthy oven-baked goodies I’ve been missing out on for a few months. The chilly weather we’ve been enjoying since Hurricane Earl swept the hot humidity away has had me baking cakes, stuffed chicken breasts, trifles, mini casseroles, and most recently – baked potatoes. Last week Nate & I had supper at the Keg, indulging in mouth watering steaks and baked potatoes smothered in sour cream, butter, green onions and bacon bits. Memories of the fall fair, delicious home cooked dinners at Grams, and when-can-I-eat-this-again kept going through my mind the whole time. Which is why we have a 10lb bag of spuds in the bottom shelf of the fridge, waiting to be baked and devoured.

Sushi Failures

Before the rice fell off!

The fillings: avocado, grilled asparagus and mushrooms, cream cheese, cucumber and green onion

Rolling it up, improvised replacement for bamboo: cling wrap over a paper towel (Worked quite nicely too!)

Early success, cream cheese, cucumber and avocado roll

Kikkoman Soy Sauce

Sushi wouldn't be sushi without wasabi!

The finished mild successes!

It seems like this blog has become less and less about school and more and more about food! Maybe because most of this semester has been spent listening to lectures and writing papers as opposed to actually being in the studio’s. Anyways, here is my first attempt at home sushi making that has ended in failure, as I didn’t follow the recipe and used jasmine rice instead of sushi rice. They looked fine but as soon as you tried to dip them in soy sauce the rice on the outside of the roll fell off – fail! I was also turned off by the very strong smell of the seaweed sheets when they are first wet with the rice, so I only ate two and fed the rest to Nate, who said they tasted like sushi, and would have been a success if it wasn’t for the rice! Oh me who needs to listen to instructions!

Right now I am sitting in a big comfy armchair in the children’s section of the Halifax Public Library trying to come up with a good craft idea, that I have to write a proposal paper for due Friday and an object/final presentation of my idea on the last day of class. I have two different ideas, one is to create a hypothetical webpage where parents can upload large photo files of their children to be made into life size posters they can color and use to document growth as a wall chart. The second is similar, but instead of life size photo’s the images get made into vinyl images that can be easily stuck and removed from windows. The problem with both is the research for the paper, I need current information on the children’s craft industry (which there is none) and supporting marketing research (also none). I’ve gone through dozens of books and scoured the NY Times website for articles – nothing. So Dr Afoldy, if you are reading this I am researching, really I am, but I am coming up empty.

Welcome! Spring

A Wonderful Spring Full Lettuce Salad

Fried Chicken and Bacon, Grease Pressed Out

Garlic and Herb Crumbled Feta

Chopped Green Onion on Washed Full Lettuce Leaves

Kraft Pesto Parmesan Salad Dressing

Ice Cold Water with a Dash of Lemon Juice

Addicted to the goodness of spring cuisine. Spent the last few days eating lots of veggies and BBQ steaks to welcome in the first day of Spring! After a wonderful Saturday morning brunch I went with Adam and Beth to Peggy’s Cove, found a rock sheltered from the wind but directly in the sun and slept for two hours. It was at least 22 degrees (C) and I got a nice little sunburn on my face.

I went and bought a new flat iron on Friday from Kara’s, its amazing! It is the same one my hairdresser, Ayla, uses – heats up super fast and works really well even on my damp hair. I’ve only used it on 1/2 heat so far and it works just as well!

Lazy March Days

In keeping with the tradition of “Spring Cleaning” I have been making an effort to eat down my massive food storage – pantry and frozen. I love fresh food: hummus, scrambled eggs, crunchy baked bread, chicken salads, pita wraps, mango’s, guacamole, cream cheese, ect. but in keeping up with this habit I tend to neglect my dry goods (cereal, pasta, crackers, canned soups, tuna, ect). Then when fresh goods such as meat and veggies begin to reach their expiry dates I bundle them up and pop them in the freezer. Which leaves me with a lot of excess food, that I am now committed to eating down before I grocery shop again.

So lately without the excess fresh goodies, my meals have been on the unhealthy side. One of the better choices I’ve made is this pork stir fry, made from a frozen Thai veggie mix and seasoned pork strips leftover from a fondue/wine night. I’ve spent the afternoon post History of Photography catching up on my March issue of Vogue, updating my very weak nail polish collection with this lovely Revlon #915 rosy nude polish in ‘Creme Brule’, and eating down the three boxes of Toffifee that have been on my shelf since Christmas.

In the next few weeks, I hope to tackle my closet, reverse my seasonal clothing and maybe update my summer wardrobe with some pieces I’ve designed (dresses and shorts, mostly).

I got an excellent mark on my body form for Draping, I lost half marks for the shaping of the outer layer and the construction of the sewn sections. Overall I’m very pleased with my form, and look forward to using it for many years – or as long as it is still relevant to my body dimensions 😉

Tuesday’s Etsy

I came home last night and checked my mail box, very happy to see that my brooches arrived! I saved unwrapping them until I got home tonight to open them so I could enjoy the process – I’ve wanted a cameo brooch for a very long time and the second brooch is amazing as well. These two pieces were both from Etsy seller, lciernia. Check out her shop here, she has over 900 items for sale! She recently listed this “Vintage Victorian Revival Black and White Cameo Brooch” , less detailed but with the same simplistic beauty that cameo jewelry has!

I thought I would share a picture of my delicious supper: Warm honey mustard and cream cheese chicken on baby spinach leaves with alfalfa sprouts, green onion, goat cheese and cracked black pepper! Mmmmm so yummy