Archive for May, 2011

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52 Weeks of Happiness: Week 2

May 31, 2011

This week birthday parties make me happy. Getting to together with family, watching the excitement balloons create and eating good food (especially BBQ & birthday cake)!!!

The Birthday Girl

Don’t Forget,  if you’re reading this through facebook you are going to need to ‘like’ my new  Eat∙Grow∙Love Fan page as I will not be posting on my profile very soon. Do this by clicking the Facebook icon on the top right of this page and then clicking ‘like’ – you may need to sign into your account.

P.S. Stay tuned for that delicious ‘Coca-Cola’ cake recipe!!

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Our Favorite Pancakes

May 28, 2011

Growing up we were a ‘Bisquick’ mix pancake family. My mom would make us little tiny pancakes on a large electric grittle, it is a fond breakfast memory I have. Originally when I moved out and started cooking for myself I used ‘Bisquick’ mix as well. That is until I was introduced to homemade pancakes. I have tried out 15 or so different pancake recipes until I found the right one. There is only one recipe we use now. Yes, I said ‘we’, Brad will whip these up some Saturday mornings. It is one of the few recipes he cooks from.  It is from Nigella Lawsons cookbook, ‘How to be a Domestic Goddess’. This is one of my very favorite cookbooks! You will need a scale for the majority of the recipes in this book (most everything is measured in grams). I got my scale from Canadian Tire for under $10.00 and would recommend picking one up, especially if you plan on using any cookbook from the UK.

Nigella’s American Breakfast Pancakes 

225 g. Flour (1 1/2 c. + 1 tbsp.)

1 tbsp.  baking powder

Pinch of salt

1 tsp. Sugar

2 large eggs, beaten

30g. Butter, melted & cooled (approx. 2 tbsp.)

300 ml. Milk

Butter for frying

Directions:

The easiest way to make these is to put all the ingredients to a blender and blitz. If you do mix up the batter by hand in a bowl (which is how I mix them up), make a well in the dry ingredients then beat in eggs, melted butter and milk.

Transfer to a jug (I use a 1/4 c. measuring cup): it’s much easier to pour the batter into the pan than spoon it in. I like to leave the batter for 20 minutes before using it – Resist the tempation to skip this  step, it makes the pancakes fluffy).

When you cook the pancakes, all you need to remember is that when the upper side of the pancake is blistering and bubbling it’s time to cook the second side, and this needs only about 1 minute, if that.

VARIATION – Add a blueberries, strawberries, banana, shredded carrot or small diced pieces of peeled apple or pear to the batter just before frying. I used blueberries and pears today.

ENJOY!!

Today I got a new cookbook in the mail, ‘Ice Pop Joy’ by Anni Daulter. I am so excited to try all these delicious looking (and healthy) popsicle recipes… stay tuned!

** To check out either of these books, just click on the picture.

Thanks and have a wonderful weekend!!

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A whole new look

May 27, 2011

Here it is… my new blog name and design. I originally started out with a pre-made template and name just to figure out how this whole blogging business works but soon realized that, although time consuming, I could create my own header and layout that suits exactly what I want and make it easy for all you readers to find your way around.

So, welcome to Eat∙Grow∙Love!! It took me awhile to come up with a name. I wanted one that would be to the point and tell you exactly what you’re going to read about.  I hope you like it!!

Please ‘like’ my blog page (by clicking the facebook box on the right and then clicking ‘like’) if you would like to recieve updates and notifications of new posts. I’m going to stop posting these on my profile (as soon as I figure out how to do it :)).

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52 Weeks of Happiness: Week 1

May 24, 2011

This is my first week in the happiness challenge. I was invited to join this project by Leigh over at Leigh vs. Laundry. Leigh hosts this carnival every Tuesday where she challenges the blogosphere to scout out joy in their life for one year. All I have to do is post a photo of something that makes me wildly happy and then tell you all about it.

Thinking about this project has made me realize that there are A LOT of things in my life that make me happy. All week I have had lots of ideas of things I could post… thanks for that Leigh!!

Here is week 1:

My husband Brad makes me happy (a little corny I know)!!

 

There are loads of things that he does that make me appreciate him. Recently it’s all his hard work; he is a workhorse in the yard! In the last couple weeks he has built me a chicken coop, put the fence up for the garden and turned the soil all so I could get my seeds in the ground on time.

My planted garden, which I could not have done without him watching the baby... another thing to be grateful for!

Thank you for being a wonderful husband, I don’t tell you nearly enough how much I appreciate all your hard work! (a little more corny stuff just incase you didn’t get your fill above 🙂 ).

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{this moment}

May 20, 2011

Joining Amanda at Soulemama for {this moment}

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

If you’re inspired to do the same, leave a link to your ‘moment’ in the comments for all to find and see

 .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

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Welcome to the Ladies

May 18, 2011

Last summer I had the difficult decision; I was 7 months pregnant and didn’t know if I wanted to commit to caring for a vegetable garden. I couldn’t decide between decreasing the size of the garden be more manageable or joining a CSA (Community Shared Agriculture) where I would  receive a vegetable box from a local farm weekly. In the end I cut my vegetable garden in half, it went from a 20X60 plot to a 20X40. It was the right decision because I really enjoyed my time in the garden and had no problem working in it, in fact I spent 3 hours in it the day before Thomas was born.

This summer I wanted to do something in the unused portion of my garden, which Brad grassed in last year. I decided it would be a perfect spot for a small chicken coop. I always wanted a coop but could never convince Brad it was a good idea.  For some reason this year he agreed! It took him 2 weekends to build the coop and it is awesome!!

Brad hard at work

We decided on a ‘condo’ style coop with a raised hen house and caged in pecking and grazing area. The hen house has 2 laying boxes and a roosting perch. The entire coop can be moved so that once the bottom gets dirty we can shift it over and rake up the mess.

Teddy checkin' it all out

 Our Girls arrived yesterday. We decided on 1 fullsize Redstar and 2 bantam buff brahma hens. They were a little scared when they first arrived but seem to have settled in quite quickly.

In the hen hosue

I read that it may take up to 2 weeks for them to start laying but to my surprise both times I went to the coop today I found an egg.  2 beautiful, perfect, wonderful eggs!!

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Trout – from pond to plate

May 17, 2011

As soon as the 1st of April approaches I know things are going to change. There will be many nights of ‘working late’ and some Saturday mornings of ‘alone’ time not because Brad is so committed to his job he is putting in extra hours (which he does, don’t get me wrong) but because fishing season has opened. There is not much my husband loves more than fishing!! Although sometimes all this time on the water annoys me, it’s hard to get mad at the little boy in the candy shop that is Brad (and his dad for that matter) when they are excitedly planning their fishing routes.  Even better is hearing him talk about all the fishing adventures he will take with Thomas.

Normally there is a strict ‘gut in the woods’ rule for his catch of the day but today I thought you might learn a thing or two (as did I) about getting a trout ready for a feast.

STEP 1 – Remove the head. Start by cutting the gills on the underside of the fish until you reach the spine. Take the knife out and twist the head OR cut through the spine if it is a smaller fish.

STEP 2 – Split the belly, this is easily done with scissors or can be done with a knife.

STEP 3 – Remove the innards and rinse the fish in cold water. Use your thumb nail to scrap the sack of blood running along the spine.

 

STEP 4 – Remove the fins and tail with scissors (optional).

There are many ways to cook a Trout, since I’m not a big fan of a fishy smelling house we do it as much as possible on the BBQ. I usually cook this recipe in a hot BBQ on a piece of tin foil for approximately 15 minutes however, yesterday I cooked it in the house because it was raining, surprise surprise 🙂 

     2 handfuls of thyme, pull the leaves off by running your fingers down the stalk

     1 tsp. salt and pepper, to taste

     3 tbsp. olive oil

     1 or 2 lemons

     4 bay leaves, fresh if possible

Preheat oven to 475˚. Ensure the trout has been washed inside and out and patted dry with a paper towel.

Using a mortar and pestle (I use a bowl and the tip of a spoon, pretty fancy huh?!) smash up the thyme with salt, some pepper and the olive oil. Rub this mixture into the trout; covering the belly cavity and the skin.

Cut the lemons in half and remove the ends so they have a flat edge. With the point of a knife, make an incision into the flesh of each lemon half and stick a bay leaf into it.  Place the trout and lemons on a lined tray and bake for 10 minutes or until you can pull the meat easily away from the bone. If it doesn’t pull back easily return it oven for a few more minutes.

Serve the trout with the lemon on the side to be squeezed over the fish. The recipe suggests serving it pan fried potatoes and crisp green salad which is what I always do because it’s so good!