Friday, February 26, 2010

Pork Tenderloin with an Espresso Rub and Rosemary Sweet Potatoes


 I found this recipe the other day while looking for something to do with pork tenderloin. 
The idea of using espresso powder in the rub really appealed to me.  I was also really curious about adding fresh rosemary to mashed sweet potatoes.  We absolutely loved the whole meal, but the rosemary in the sweet potatoes was fantastic!  The flavours just worked so well together!  I don't think I'll ever make mashed sweet potatoes without rosemary again!  Really, they were THAT good!!!  
The changes I made to the original were as follows...
I didn't peel the sweet potatoes (the skin's my favourite part!) and I omitted the butter, using sour cream instead.  
I only roasted the tenderloin for 16 minutes and I'm so glad I did as it would have been overdone if I'd left it in even one minute longer.  As it was, it was slightly pink...just the way we like it.  Oh, and I used chipotle chili powder instead of ancho.  
I'll definitely be making this dish again.
Here are some pics. of the process...
The ingredients for the rub

The tenderloin rubbed with the spice mixture

Sweet potatoes chopped up and ready to be boiled

Some lovely fresh rosemary

Slices of pork with sweet potatoes and steamed asparagus


Thursday, February 25, 2010


This was my first attempt at timbales.  I have made similar stuffed veggie creations, but none that I've enjoyed as much as these.  As usual, I was browsing some blogs, looking for something interesting to make for dinner, when I came across this  recipe.
Yum, these were really delicious.  I changed it a bit by subbing whole wheat gnocchi for the pasta in the original recipe.  I really liked that substitution as it made for a really filling and substantial dish for dinner.  I didn't measure the amount of ricotta I used, but maybe 1/2 cup for the three of us.  I used a LOT of fresh basil...probably 3/4 cup.  I had lots of Roma tomatoes on hand, so I chopped them up (didn't bother peeling or seeding) and used them to make a fresh tomato sauce with lots of onions and garlic.  To plate, I put a couple of dollops of sauce on the plate, placed the timbale on top and added some more sauce and sprig of basil for garnish.  I will definitely make these again!

I roasted the eggplant slices in a 400F oven for about 20 mins.

Whole wheat gnocchi


Fresh basil (don't worry, I did wash it before chopping!!)

Parmigiano Reggiano

Mixing the parmigiano with the ricotta, basil and freshly ground black pepper

Layering the gnocchi, sauce and ricotta mixture 

Patted down and wrapped up.  Ready to bake.

Ooey, gooey goodness! :-)

The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies!!


I'm always searching for great chocolate chip cookie recipes.  I have many that I use often and to be honest, most of them are really good!  But I keep believing that there's a better one out there...there must be THE perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe :-)  
I was searching online the other day and found this recipe.
These are my favourite chocolate chip cookies so far.  The only thing I changed was to bake them for 18 minutes (I used my cookie scooper and got 56 cookies out of this batter).  They were crunchy, but not too crunchy.  If you like them really soft, I'd suggest baking for about 2 minutes less.  Also, I made 2 sheets at a time and rotated the sheets halfway through the baking time.
Mixing the batter

Adding the dry ingredients (I didn't bother to mix them first)

Balls of dough

All done!!!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Claypot Shrimp with Glass Noodles

I'm afraid my photo doesn't really do this dish justice.  It was actually really good, but I forgot to take pics. after I plated it.  I was browsing online, looking for something interesting to do with the shrimp I was defrosting when I found this recipe

I stayed fairly true to the original recipe but have noted my changes along with the pics. below...

I chopped up 8 cloves of garlic and about 2 inches of fresh ginger

chopped the roots and about 3 inches of the stems from some fresh coriander

Sautéed the coriander, garlic and ginger in some coconut oil until softened

Meanwhile, I soaked (about 30 mins.) and then drained a 240g pkg. of glass (mung bean) noodles

Added the noodles, sautéed items,  2 tbsp. soy, 1 tbsp. oyster sauce, 1 tbsp. Maggi, 1 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper, 1 tbsp. ketjap manis, 2 tbsp. sambal oelek and 2 tsp. sesame oil to a bowl and mixed thoroughly

Rinsed and dried 400g shrimp (in their shells)

some Shanghai Bok Choi
Chopped and drained the Shanghai Bok Choi

Mixed the shrimp with the noodles and other ingredients

Oiled the inside of the claypot

Added everything (including the bok choi) to the claypot
Put the lid on the claypot and baked at 350F for about 40 mins.

All done!


Monday, February 08, 2010

Turmeric Tea


I was checking out one of my favourite blogs the other day and found this recipe.
I knew I wanted to try it because I love all of the spices listed.  Perry and I were shopping at a local Asian market yesterday and saw some fresh turmeric, so I decided this was the perfect excuse to try making turmeric tea!  I'm sipping it as I post this and it is absolutely delicious!!!

Here are some pics....
cinnamon stick, fresh turmeric, fresh ginger, cloves and nutmeg

 I used my handy little grater for the nutmeg

I ground the cinnamon and cloves in my spice grinder.  Grated the turmeric and ginger with my microplane.

Look how vibrant the fresh turmeric is!!

Oops, maybe I should have worn rubber gloves!! :-)

Simmered for 10 mins., strained and served with milk and raw honey.

Clementine Jelly


This is a fairly healthy dessert that I made last week.  I was looking for something light but tasty and this was just perfect.  I found this recipe
by Jamie Oliver, but changed it slightly.
I used 2 envelopes of powdered gelatin instead of the sheets.  I also used raw honey instead of sugar.  I had no vanilla syrup, so I just used pure vanilla extract.  When I made the yogourt topping, I added 1 tablespoon of raw honey with the vanilla extract.  I also probably used a little more ginger than was called for, but the result wasn't all that 'gingery'.  Along with the clementines, I also juiced 2 Meyer lemons.  I think the lemons added a little bit of tartness, which worked really well.

Juicing the clementines 

Grating the ginger with my microplane (I love this tool!)

Mmmm, gingery goodness

A slice of clementine in the glass before adding the jelly

The jelly before it set

All done!

The Lean Green Bean