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Maple “Turtle”Cheesecake

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Maple Turtle Cheesecake

It is the time of year again when all sorts of maple goodies start to show up in the shops, following a season in the sugar woods and all those great pancake dinners.  There are a few places near by where I live where you can purchase maple products right where they are produced, but they’re also available pretty much anywhere.  Maple syrup seems to stick around for a longer time frame, but the maple cream and maple butters seem to have a shorter appearance (although the MPANS website states you can freeze maple butter).

So for this recipe, I wanted to make use of a tub of maple butter I had picked up Hunter’s maple products in Springhill, to create a kind of turtle cheesecake, substituting it for the caramel in the recipe.  This is the stuff you’re looking for (and good stuff it is!):

Maple Butter

On to the recipe!

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Smoked Cheddar and Beet Green Farinata

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033This time of year, I am always on the look out for new ways to use up all the greens that come in my CSA (Wysmykal Farm!).  This week’s delivery (a half share at that!) came with kale, some new turnips as well as little beets.  I cooked the kale and turnip greens separately so that I could whisk them into morning eggs, as well as freezing some for later.  I never toss the greens from my beets either, so while I was roasting them today to eat through the week, I whipped up this hearty farinata that’ll come in handy for quick lunches through the week, with some destined for the freezer.

Farinata is a kind of pancake made with chickpea flour.  It bakes up to kind of a dense custard-like texture and the combinations for what you can mix in are endless really.  It is already vegetarian and if you opt out on the cheese (or opt in a dairy-free version), this also makes for a great vegan meal.

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Kale and Yellow Eye Bean Soup

CreamyKaleandYellowEyeBeanSoup_zps7d686ecbIt has been raining here for days and the temps have taken a noticeable dive, so that means comfort food.  I am so not ready for the colder weather, but I am always ready for a tasty bowl of soup.  For this recipe I used my garlic and kale from Wysmykal Farm as well as yellow eye beans from Webster Farms.  Paired with a gooey grilled cheese (with a hint of hot honey horseradish mustard from LaHave Bakery), it made for a heart-warming dinner on a chilly evening.

This is pretty quick to whip up if you have cooked beans on hand.  If you are looking for a further shortcut, you can also use any white canned bean, just drain and rinse. Read the rest of this entry

Greek Brunch Bake

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This recipe, much like my Tunisian Squash Casserole last year, was borne from the need to use up my CSA vegetables in a way that gives me a few tasty, convenient, and individual meals for the freezer.  I get a half share of vegetables from Wysmykal Farm every week, and even as one person who loves her veggies, I sometimes have a hard time making my way through it all before the next pick up.  I hate waste but thankfully love to cook on the weekends, so I often make big pots of catch-all soups, roast and freeze the root vegetables and squash, and make stuff like this. I love being able to pull a slice of this out of the freezer on mornings when I’m in a rush (which is most mornings, because let me tell you, I am NOT a morning person) and it gives me a nice portion of protein and vegetables to start my day .  It also makes for a nice lunch or dinner with a little salad or soup.  Read the rest of this entry

Gooseberry Coffee Cake

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(I am not a pretty picture, but you get the point)

Hello again!  And apologies for such measly posting.  It’s been a busy summer, and while I have still been cooking plenty, few original recipes came out of the kitchen, mostly returns to old favorites, lots of grilling and various things tossed together.  I have posted some of my food related travels, new favorite products and such over on my Twitter page, as well as on my Facebook page, so swing by for a visit!

I got a little of my baking mojo back with this little coffee cake, inspired by the gorgeous basket of fresh gooseberries I had purchased at the Dieppe farmer’s market a couple of weeks ago.  I topped and tailed them and popped most of them into the freezer where they will join other baked goodies and maybe some chutney as the fall wears on.  While at the same market, I picked up a container of Quark from Armadale Farms, one of my favorite stops !  And so, that too was destined for baking.  At lower fat content and with 10 grams of protein in 1/3 cup, this stuff is one of my new favorite products, finding its way on top of potatoes and mixed into scrambled eggs.  Love it!   If you can’t find quark cheese nearby, you can substitute an equal quantity of cream cheese in this recipe.

On to the recipe!  This cake is lemon flavored as well as studded with those beautiful gooseberries, topped with a quark mixture and a crumble topping.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

In your stand mixer or large bowl combine:

  • 2 cups white flour
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Then blend in:

  • 3/4 cup lemonade
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tbsp grated lemon peel
  • 2 cups gooseberries (if large, chop them down a little)

When mixed, turn into a greased 9 inch springform pan, set aside.

Mix together:

  • 8 ounces Quark cheese
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Spread this mixture over top of cake batter.

Use a pastry blender to combine into crumbs:

  • 3/4 cup white flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter

Sprinkle this over top of cake.  Bake for 60-70 minutes until tester comes out relatively clean (cheese may stick to tester).  Run a knife around inner edge of cake and allow to cool completely before removing sides and bottom of pan.  Cut, serve and share!

Slow Food Nova Scotia Spring Supper 2014

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100th post!  And I am incredibly pleased to be able to dedicate it to a fantastic event I attended this past weekend, thanks to both Slow Food NS and Taste of Nova Scotia 🙂

Slow Food Hall

I had been ogling this event and daydreaming this past week, trying to figure out whether I could make it, when the foodie gods shone their light upon me or something, because I ended up winning two tickets to go.  My little food nerd heart grew three sizes that day !  Read the rest of this entry