Friday, May 20, 2011

Chicken Piccata - Lemony Chickeny goodness at its best!

I can't remember if I've mentioned this before, but every Friday night we have a regularly scheduled dinner date with family friends of ours. G&C (as they are so well-known at our house) have truly become an extension of our family and weeks where we don't see each other just don't feel right! Beyond the great conversation and laughing till it hurts, G&C's visits allow me to play with some new creations and test out some new recipes that I've found. 

In this particular case, I decided to try another Ina Garten recipe. You all know my love of the Barefoot Contessa and this recipe was so easy and straightforward that I couldn't pass it up. So, I decided to try Ina's Chicken Piccata and it was delish! 

The recipe is pretty straight forward but I must say, I toned down the lemon juice additions by about half. I found that even with the amount I used, it was still very tart and as such I threw in about 1/8 cup of maple syrup (because I put it in EVERYTHING!). I would really recommend letting the sauce reduce significantly but I swear to you this dish is amazing!!! We used panko breadcrumbs and seasoned them mysefl. We served it with a huge amount of roasted broccoli, carrots, sweet potatoes & beets and I swear just looking at this photo is making me want to rush out and make it right now.

I hope you guys have the chance to make this sometime. It's a quick and easy meal to prepare any night of the week and it always guarantees to be delish! 

Happy beginning of your long weekend!!!!!!! 


Saturday, May 14, 2011

Easter Baking... a few weeks late

I swear these last few weeks have FLOWN by in a blur of work and work and a bit more work and family gatherings and a tiny bit of sleep in there as well. Plus, this coming week, I'm helping out with the musical at the school my Mum teaches at, so needless to say things have been busy! Thankfully, despite it all, I may have managed to pull off a bit of time to get some cooking done too!

I have been wanting to share these things with you for ages now and am only now getting around to them. For Easter, I had decided to finally make some challah bread. I've been wanting to do it for years especially since it is very similar to my Baba's Ukrainian Bapka (a sweet yeast bread, similar to panettone). I have actually gone through the process of making Baba's bapka with her before but I find that lately I've been trying to find similar alternatives that don't quite have the gaps that Baba's recipes do... For example, when I asked how much flour goes into her bread, she told me "it's about 6 to 10 cups of flour". Gotta love a good 4 cup variance! This recipe is truly delicious and I strongly suggest that everyone try it. 

I originally found the recipe on a Radishes and Rhubarb, a blog by one of my babysitting Moms, Allison (see Allison's post about Challah here). When I first decided to try the recipe last year, I ended up forgetting the eggs (one of the most important parts of a challah) but somehow the bread still turned out amazingly. Regardless, this time, I actually remembered the eggs and ended up making a very delicious batch of bread. So delicious that I feel it has rivaled Baba's bread! Not to mention, it's braided!!!! Come ON! How can you not love a good braided bread?!?!? 

In terms of the process, it is the simplest thing ever!!!  Simply toss all of your ingredients into the bowl of your stand mixer, mix for a few minutes and let it rise. Once risen, shape and let it rise again and then bake.  



 On top of having made this delightful bread, and as a little treat to give to my cousins and family on Easter. I made these little cupcakes with some piping, some shredded wheat and melted chocolate and of course, mini eggs!!!!!! 
I hope you all had a wonderful Easter and that the Easter bunny remembered where you lived :) 

Happy Saturday!!!!


Sunday, May 1, 2011

Food Blogger-cide? Maaaybe! Deliciousness? Definitely!

I have decided to coin a new term: Blogger-cide... Pretty much the equivalent of blogger suicide. Perhaps I should even further clarify it by calling it Food Blogger-cide. Allow me to define this term for you:

Food Blogger-cide - noun - A crime committed by food bloggers when they forget to take both process and completed product food photos. The end result is typically a photo once the dish has been half devoured (sad sad shame!). 

Anywhoo... I have committed Food Blooger-cide. It was my birthday a few weeks ago (hurray for the big 2-5!!!!) and I made my own birthday cake. Now, before you start thinking or saying (I can hear you!!!!) "Oh that poor girl had to make her own birthday cake. Does she not have anyone who loves her who could have made her cake?", allow me to clarify that I had 2 people offer to make my cake, however I decided that I wanted to make my cake. I had been craving to make a cake for a while since I haven't had any cake orders over the last few months and this was the perfect opportunity for me to make a cake. 

I decided that Anna Olson's Banana White Chocolate Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting was going to be the epic cake to celebrate my birthday with some family and friends. I learned the hard way that when making this cake (with 4 layers of cake - 2 x 9-inch cake pan with each cake cut in half) that 1 1/2 times the icing recipe is not enough... However if you find yourself in this bind, whip out some sliced almonds to cover up your slightly less than perfect cake sides. I was a little rushed while finishing the cake and the rest of the meal and welcoming guests that I accidentally forgot to take a picture of the cake before we cut into it. BUT I will recant my statement of total food blogger-cide for the simple fact that now that the cake is cut, you can see the layers and deliciousness in its glory! So here it is, I swear this recipe is delicious and will not disappoint! 

I hope you all have a wonderful week :)

Take care,