• Port wine substitute
    Cooking Tips

    Port Wine Substitute

    Every so often it happens that I’m ready to dive into a recipe and I suddenly realize I don’t have a key ingredient – like port wine for instance. Not one to be easily daunted, I’m determined to move ahead with the recipe, knowing there has got to be a suitable port wine substitute (fingers crossed that I’ll have it in the house).  Sure enough, there ARE viable options for a port wine substitute. If you are preparing beef, some say that any sweet red wine could be used as a substitute for port wine, but according to a very reliable source, Cooks Thesaurus, generally speaking, your best options for…

  • Madeira Wine Substitute
    Cooking Tips

    Madeira Wine Substitute

    I discovered some Madeira wine substitute options when I was making a fabulous recipe for Chicken Breasts Stuffed With a Mushroom Duxelle.  Oooh-la-laaa, it was fan-ceee!  Try it out sometime when you are in the mood for an elegant, impressive dinner. Anyway, I thought I’d have to put my menu plan on hold because I didn’t have Madeira wine.  I did some quick research to determine if I had something else in my liquor cabinet that was an acceptable Madeira Wine substitute, and sure enough, I did.  There are actually several options for Madeira wine substitutes, and chances are, you’ve got at least one on hand right now.  In my…

  • Whipping cream substitute
    Cooking Tips

    Whipping Cream Substitute

    In soups, pastas and sauces Heavy whipping cream in soups, pastas and sauces creates a full-bodied flavor and thick consistency while adding unnecessary levels of fat and calories. For a similar consistency and taste in savory dishes, add low-fat cream cheese instead of the whipping cream. At 120 calories and 9 grams of fat per 2-ounce serving, low-fat cream cheese keeps the meal healthier than it would be with heavy whipping cream. Use half the amount the recipe calls for when subbing in cream cheese. To keep the calories even lower, mix 1 percent milk with cornstarch — at a 1-cup to 1-tablespoon ratio –– and use it as you…

  • Wendys Chili
    Main Course

    Wendy’s Chili

    Made this just now on 12/12/2015 .  Turned out not too shabby. Good enough to make it to the collection. Nice when I want a change from my long time, standby chili recipe. As I typically do when I make chili these days, I used chicken instead of beef to keep it consistent with our “healthified” eating plan. I also left out the beans since they are carbs, but I’ll make it some time with them. I didnt have tomato juice so I went with a generous amount of tomato sauce (I cut the recipe in half, and used i very large can of tomato sauce).  Finally, I left out…

  • Cocktail Recipes

    Tequila Sunrise

    A  pretty drink with visible layers of orange juice and grenadine, giving it a two-toned sunrise-like effect. The Tequila Sunrise is a cocktail made of tequila, orange juice, and grenadine syrup and served unmixed in a tall glass . The modern drink originates from California in the early 1970s, after an earlier one created in the 1930s in Arizona. Ingredients:  3 oz (6 parts) Orange juice, 1 1/2 oz (3 parts) Tequila, 1/2 oz (1 part) Grenadine syrup  Preparation:  Pour orange over ice cubes in a chilled 12 oz glass. Slowly pour in the grenadine, and allow it to settle to the bottom of the glass (be patient). Garnish with…

  • Curried Pasta Salad
    Side Dishes

    Curried Pasta Salad

    This recipe reminds me of a cold shell pasta salad I used to enjoy as a young girl when my mom would take us to Bonanza, one of our favorite restaurants at the time! Good memories. Since originally developing this recipe, I have made some more modifications, so I am re-publishing the new version of the recipe, but the original version is still available further down the page. Updated Version: (Makes 12 Servings)   Ingredients 3 pounds Chicken, cooked and chopped or shredded 6 ounces (dry weight) shell Pasta 4 whole Ribs Celery, Thinly Sliced – Leaves Included (use Interior Ribs) 3/4 cups Golden Raisins or cranraisins handful of shelled…

  • Szechuan pumpkin soup

    Szechuan Pumpkin Soup

    Another amazing recipe from amazing Auntie Bea! (Almost 86 years old and an major foodie!). Sauté some onion, garlic, chili flakes and some minced ginger in oil until soft. Add 4 cups (1 L) vegetable broth and 1 cup (250 mL) canned pumpkin purée. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in 1 tbsp (15 mL) soy sauce, 2 tbsp (25 mL) creamy peanut butter, a touch of sugar and a few drops of sesame oil. Blend until smooth, then reheat on low until warm. Womans World Magazine Sept 22, 2014

  • Picadillo Stuffed Zucchini Boats
    Main Course

    Picadillo Stuffed Zucchini Boats

    From a very old booklet called The Best of Beef. Got from my mom years ago when I started cooking. Looks like its from the 70s or 80s. No copyright date. Was a promotional booklet for the beef industry in Canada. Great recipe. A neat way to get creative with all those garden zucchinis we grow in the summer. 4 medium zucchini 1 small onion, finely chopped 1 garlic cove, minced 1lb ground beef (I use ground turkey or chicken) 1/4 raisins 1/4 c slivered almonds, toasted 1/2 c chopped apple 1/2 tsp cumin 1/4 tsp cinnamon 1/2 tsp dried oregano 1 – 5 1/2 oz can tomato paste  …

  • Curry soup with chicken

    Auntie Bea’s Curry Soup

    Auntie Bea made a batch of this wonderful soup and sent it over for us in September of 2015, when we were hard at work getting our flip house (affectionately known as “Mel”) ready to put on the market. Let’s not forget how amazing she is – still going strong at 85 (she’ll be 86 in Janauary), cooking up a storm and busily going off to her cooking classes (4 different classes this fall alone – including one just this past Saturday!).  She is such an inspiration – one of the coolest 85 year olds you’ll ever meet. Wish it had been that way for my mom, her good “buddy”.…

  • Turkey sloppy joes recipes
    Chicken,  Main Course

    Turkey Sloppy Joes

    I was suddenly craving Sloppy Joes today. Back in the day, I would have thrown a can of Manwich in with some ground beef and called that dinner.  But now that we are into more of a clean eating lifestyle (except for cheat days!), I was thinking more like turkey or chicken sloppy joes, home made all the way.  Looked around at some sloppy joe recipes, but ultimately created my own hybrid based on 3 – 4 -different recipes, since none seemed quite spot-on for my liking.  Husband loved, loved, loved this. Went on about how good it was for 5 minutes after he got up from the table, no…