The Farm and City Cookbook

Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing


Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing
Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing
Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing
Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing
Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing

Spinach & Sprout Salad

4-6 big handfuls spinach

1 cup alfalfa sprouts

1 cup sliced mushrooms

½ feta cheese chunks

2 Tbsp poppy seeds

Honey Dressing

½ cup liquid honey

¼ cup hot water

¼ cup lemon juice

¼ cup oil

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp ground ginger

dash ground cloves

For Honey Dressing, blend ingredients well in a shaker or hand mixer.

Wash and spin spinach leaves and tear into a large bowl. Add alfalfa sprouts, sliced mushrooms and chunks of feta cheese to taste.

Toss with ½ cup Honey dressing and sprinkle with poppy seeds just before serving.

Makes 4-6 servings.

Note: I spread hummus on pita and used the salad to make wraps - very yummy!

Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing
Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing
Spinach & Sprout Salad with Honey Dressing

Chocolate Specials


Chocolate Specials Recipe
Chocolate Specials Recipe

I recently applied to “the Great Canadian Baker,” just for fun! They called me yesterday and asked me a couple follow up questions. On the same day, I made some pretty big changes to my Master’s thesis. And the next day I was put on a new exciting research project where I work. So, I have a lot going on! I instantly feel the need to finish my thesis, bake a million goodies to practice (just in case I get a call!), and work super hard on the project at my job.

Chocolate Specials Recipe

For me, times like these are very exciting, but I should also think about balance, just so that I can keep it all together. I usually go to my mum for advice; she is very grounded and keeps me in check! When I moved to Kingston to start my Master’s she gave me a book by Pema Chordon called “When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times.” I read the title and couldn’t help but think, “does my mum think my life is falling apart?” But I knew I shouldn’t be offended because of that rule we learn in junior school, never judge a book by its cover!

My favourite chapter is “The Path is the Goal.” It might sound hokey, but it’s a simple reminder that life is lived in the chaotic moments, the happy moments, the crazy stressful days, etc. The journey is what it’s about and it should be enjoyed! So, even though I want to stay up all night to check off everything on my to-do list, just to be done, writing this is my conscious reminder to slow down and enjoy it!

Chocolate Specials Recipe
Chocolate Specials Recipe

Chocolate Specials

3 cups rolled oats

6 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

2 cups sugar

½ cup milk

½ cup butter

1 tsp vanilla

Stir together oats, cocoa, and coconut in bowl and set aside.

Bring sugar, milk and butter to boil in saucepan; pour over oats and mix well. Stir in vanilla.

Drop by the teaspoonful onto waxed paper lined baking sheet.

When cool, store in covered container at room temperature. Best eaten within 3 days.

Makes 36 cookies.

Chocolate Specials Recipe
Chocolate Specials Recipe

*Recipe from The Farm and City Cookbook

Pesto


Pesto Pizza Recipe
Pesto Pizza Recipe

Pesto, pesto, pesto! I don’t remember ever eating it until my University days. I lived in house with 4 other girls, one of them being Abbey. I remember thinking how exotic all the food her family ate was. Her dad makes Lebanese recipes and is a great cook (her mum too!). Okra, kibbeh, grape leaves, hummus, and some yummy stews were sent back with Abbey, and of course, she shared!

Abbey and I would grocery shop and cook together, and pretty much everything else, including school because we were in the same program. I remember cooking chicken on the stove and by the end, it was all cut into pieces because we would check every slice to make sure it was cooked all the way through. We were both very anxious cooks!

Abbey introduced me to Pesto Pizza. It is simple, delicious, and requires minimal ingredients (probably why we made it so often in University). We also made scones all the time because most recipes don’t call for eggs (which we would never have on hand for some reason). We even used chocolate milk in substitute for milk (only one time because it was... um, terrible). We were always searching for flourless, eggless or butterless recipes because we could never get it together!

Pesto Pizza Recipe
Pesto Pizza Recipe

Back to pesto pizza: we would flatten out the pizza dough on a cookie sheet, slather on basil pesto, cover with thinly sliced potatoes, and sprinkle lightly with whatever cheese we had. Potatoes on pizza, how exotic (is probably what I was thinking!). We used to buy pesto in jars, but it is so easy and satisfying to make yourself. You can leave out the Parmesan and freeze it or keep it in the fridge covering the top with a layer of oil.

The only problem I have with pesto is that Pasta Genova’s is better than mine! I love pesto, and more often eat it on pasta. Pasta Genova has a pesto that is so delicious I can (and do) eat it by the spoon, on its own. I don’t know how they do it.

My last attempt was the best pesto I have made to date. I have tried various recipes; some with lemon juice, toasted pine nuts, and various ratios of pine nuts to oil. The next recipe to try is my boyfriend’s mother’s! I hear it’s great!

Pesto Pizza Recipe
Pesto Pizza Recipe

Pesto

My modified version of the recipe

2 cups packed fresh basil leaves

4 Tbsp pine nuts or blanched almonds

1 clove garlic

salt

¼ cup olive oil

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese (not optional)

The Farm and City Recipe

2 cups packed fresh basil leaves

4 Tbsp pine nuts or blanched almonds

3 cloves garlic

salt

¾ cup olive oil

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Blend basil, pine nuts, garlic and salt in blender or food processor.

Slowly drizzle in olive oil while machine is running.

Blend in Parmesan cheese until smooth.

Makes enough for 1 lb of pasta.

Pesto Pizza Recipe

Pesto Pizza

1 pizza dough

4 Tbsp pesto

1-2 potatoes, thinly sliced

1 Tbsp Parmesan

1 tsp rosemary

4 Tbsp goat cheese

Stretch pizza dough in rectangle and transfer to parchment lined cookie sheet.

Spread pesto on dough, leaving 2 cm border for the crust. Slightly overlap potatoes to completely cover pesto (they shrink up a bit when cooking). Drop goat cheese in 10 dollops on top of potatoes.

Sprinkle Parmesan and rosemary on 2 cm border you’ve created for the crust.

Bake at 400°F for 18-22 minutes until crust is golden.

Pesto Pizza Recipe
Pesto Pizza Recipe

*Recipe from The Farm and City Cookbook

Lemon Bread


Lemon Bread Recipe
Lemon Bread Recipe

When I recall the dessert loaves my mum would bake, I think banana bread, lemon bread, and chocolate zucchini bread. I remember she would sometimes put chocolate chips in the banana bread. Yum! The other time the loaf tin was used was for meat loaf, which we ate for dinner just as frequently as pasta (or so it seemed)!

I wanted something sweet this week, and had lemons and poppy seeds on hand. This recipe is delicious. I made a simple lavender and lemon glaze to drizzle on top. I steeped lavender petals in milk and let cool to room temperature. I added the milk to icing sugar and adjusted the consistency with lemon juice. The glaze was tart and went perfectly with the bread. This lemon bread recipe forms a nice golden crust, is moist on the inside, and not too sweet. We ate this for breakfast and later in the day with tea.

Lemon Bread Recipe
Lemon Bread Recipe
Lemon Bread Recipe
Lemon Bread Recipe

Lemon Bread

1/3 cup shortening or butter

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 Tbsp lemon juice (and grated peel, if you like)

1 ½ cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

½ cup milk

½ cup chopped walnuts or poppy seeds (optional)

Cream butter and sugar in bowl; beat in eggs. Stir in lemon juice and peel (if using).

Sift flour, baking powder, and salt, and add alternately with milk to cream mixture, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Stir in walnuts or poppy seeds (if using).

Pour into 9” x 5” (2 L) loaf pan.

Bake at 350°F (180°C) about 1 hour, until top is golden.

Makes 1 loaf

Note: I only used ¼ cup of poppy seeds which I thought was plentiful! I also used a smaller loaf pan, but still cooked it for 1 hour.

 

Lemon Bread Recipe
Lemon Bread Recipe

*Recipe from The Farm and City Cookbook

Two-Meats Tomato Sauce


Two-Meats Sauce Recipe

I love eating fresh pasta. Sometimes, as a special treat I pick some up from Pasta Genova's, the local Italian grocery. I usually choose a flavoured linguine, like spinach, and whip up an alfredo sauce to go with.

For my birthday I got a pasta attachment for my kitchen aid mixer. It was sent in the mail from my mum, and it arrived February 14th. I opened it as soon as it arrived, but pretended that I waited until my birthday, and then confessed to my mother within 10 seconds of speaking to her on the phone! I'm not usually a "peaker", I love surprises! What happened was that I sort of opened it by mistake, not knowing what it was.

I've made pasta from scratch a few years ago with my mum. She has one of those hand-crank pasta rollers, the kind that attach to the table. We made beet tortellini. The process was tricky, and the dough was more dumpling-like than pasta-like. I was a bit nervous to make pasta on my own, but on Sunday afternoon with a half glass of wine, I was up for the challenge!

Two-Meats Sauce Recipe
Two-Meats Sauce Recipe
Two-Meats Sauce Recipe
Two-Meats Sauce Recipe

When I was growing up, my mum would cook pasta occasionally. We would have spaghetti or penne for the noodle and a tomato sauce with ground beef. It was always the same and never spicy! Egg noodles were strictly reserved for when we ate beef stroganoff. My mum would make it in the slow cooker and serve it over egg noddles with sour cream on top. So yummy!

I decided to make papparedelle, a wide egg noodle. I watched a couple of Youtube videos with various recipes and used 3 ¼ cup flour and 4 (and a little bit) eggs. I created a pile with the flour and made a hole for the eggs. I carefully whisked the eggs and incorporated them into the flour. I kneaded the flour for a few minutes but it wasn't coming together very well. I cracked another egg and incorporated just a bit of it. My mum has told me the harder pastry is to roll, the better the pie crust tastes. I kept this in mind, hoping the same would apply with pasta dough.

I let the dough rest while I started the sauce. I came back to it and kneaded it for a few more minutes and it seemed okay (and yes, just "okay", I still had my doubts and was wondering if I needed to use the back-up pasta I bought from the grocery store!). I flattened the dough and cut the disc like a pizza into 8 triangles. I flattened the first piece out and fit it through the pasta attachment. After multiple iterations through the machine, I could see the dough was a success! When the dough was about 1 mm thick, I rolled it up and cut it into noodles! It was so fun! I let them dry and gathered the noodles into nests. I cooked the noodles for about 2-3 minutes. They were so yummy, and the experience was so fun! I can't wait to make pasta again!

Two-Meats Sauce Recipe
Two-Meats Sauce Recipe
Two-Meats Sauce Recipe

Two-Meats Tomato Sauce

1 Tbsp butter

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

¾ lb lean ground beef

¼ lb ground pork

pinch nutmeg

¼ tsp cinnamon

1 tsp dried rosemary

½ tsp dried basil

salt and pepper

4 cups Italian plum tomatoes

1 cup water

Melt butter and olive oil in skillet. Sauté onion and garlic until softened.

Add meat and cook until no longer pink. Stir in herbs and spices.

Stir in tomatoes, 1 cup of water; simmer gently, until thick, about 1 hour.

Makes 4 cups, enough for 1 lb pasta or gnocchi.

Notes: I didn't have dried basil, so I used about 4 big leaves of fresh basil. I also ran out of ground cinnamon (how did that happen!?) so I used a cinnamon stick. I simmered the sauce with the stick in for about 20 minutes.

Two-Meats Sauce Recipe

*Recipe from the Farm and City Cookbook

Raw Beet & Carrot Salad


Raw Beet & Carrot Salad Recipe

When I was five or six, we lived in a house with the scariest of all basements - and I have 4 brothers who will second, third, fourth and fifth that. It was tiny, cold, and damp. It was dark but there was a little window to the outside that let some light in through the aged glass. I remember accompanying my mum down there while she changed the laundry over. On the opposite side, there was a shelf full of canned goods and just above, the entrance to the crawl space - still freaks me out just thinking about it! My mum would can salsa, jam, red pepper jelly, peaches, pickles, tomatoes, and of course, beets! All of the canned goods were organized and labelled accordingly, "salsa, 1994" or "strawberry rhubarb, '93" in my mum's hand.

Raw Beet & Carrot Salad Recipe
Raw Beet & Carrot Salad Recipe

Aside: I got a mandolin for my birthday. All I want to do is slice things really thin now!

Raw Beet & Carrot Salad Recipe
Raw Beet & Carrot Salad Recipe

My mum loved beets so by default, so did I! I think they were my favourite vegetable, along with asparagus. We always ate our vegetables boiled with a bit of butter, but I love, love, love raw veggies as a snack. Baby carrots are my "go-to" out of convenience, but I honestly love every vegetable I have ever come across. That is a bold statement, but nothing comes to mind (other than tomatoes but we all know tomatoes are fruit!).

Citrus is extra yummy in February, when winter has almost done us in. It brings summer that much closer. The vibrant colours, vitamins, and bright tastes can also be found in locally grown vegetables, such as beets and carrots. Beets and carrots offer that same reassurance that warmer weather is right around the corner! Beets are full of vitamins A and C. This salad is a nice starter for dinner and tastes great the next day too.

Raw Beet & Carrot Salad Recipe

Raw Beet & Carrot Salad

2 beets, peeled

2 carrots, peeled

2 Tbsp olive oil

4 tsp balsamic vinegar

salt & pepper

pumpkin seeds (optional)

Grate carrots and beets on fine side of grater or use a food processor.

Add oil and vinegar and toss gently. Add salt and pepper to taste. Top with pumpkin seeds.

Makes 4 servings.

Note: I used a mandolin to slice the vegetables but the original recipe suggests to grate them. You could also julienne the veggies, I'm sure that would be tasty too! I chose to add pumpkin seeds the this recipe, but I think sunflower seeds or shaved almonds would be a nice addition.

Raw Beet & Carrot Salad Recipe
Raw Beet & Carrot Salad Recipe

*Recipe modified from The Farm and City Cookbook