Browsing: Entrees

Saint D’s Hoisin Chicken


Not only did D prep all weekend for his annual catered Christmas dinner for 80 (inlcluding 5 turkeys) but he made me chicken soup and tea because I wasn’t feeling well AND he made us a scrumptuous Sunday dinner when the kids came over. 

Hoisin Chicken

3 lbs. boneless chicken, cut into small serving sized pieces

corn starch, enough to coat chicken

enough oil to shallow fry

3 T oil

1 inch ginger piece, peeled & grated 

2 onions, roughly chopped

8 oz. brocoli, cut into small flowerettes

1 red pepper, cut into squares

1 cups of sliced mushrooms

2 T hoi sin sauce

2 T dry sherry

1 T soy sauce

2 T vinegar


1 c water

2 chicken stock cubes

1/2 t sesame oil

 3 t cornstarch

Heat oil in wok.  Fry a few pieces of chicken at a time until golden brown and cooked through, approximately 5 minutes, drain well.  Drain excess oil from pan  and heat 3 new T of oil.  Add ginger and heat 1 minute.  Add onion and heat 1 minute.  Add brocoli, peppers and mushrooms and toss well for 2 minutes.  Add combination of hoi sin, sherry, soy, vinegar, salt, water, chrciken stock, sesame oil & 3 T corn starch.  Add chicken back to pan with veggies.  Add sauce & toss over high heat until sauce boils and thickens.  Continue to toss for 2 minutes.  Serves 6 (we even had enough for 4 left over servings).

Kath’s quote: “American women expect to find in their husbands a perfection that English women only hope to find in their butlers.”                      W. Somerset Maugham

and I love him

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Not Moule et Frites


You must be thinking that I never eat at home…..untrue!  I do admit that I have enjoyed a long stretch of business lunches and catching up with friends, but my lunch calendar is empty for the month of December and the outings will revolve around family get togethers. 

I also depended upon my restaurant experiences to blog about as I seem to have run out of family favourites which is not surprizing as I am approaching the first anniversary of this blog’s existence.  BUT last night I invented a new favourite, trying to re-create a dish that we often enjoy at Inferno’s and Bistro 7 1/4.  I served it over rice and not with French fries or else it would be known as Moule et Frites.

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1/2 red pepper, cut into narrow strips

1 carrot, peeled and then using the peeler cut into very skinny strips

1/2 c sliced mushrooms

1 can coconut milk

2 dozen(ish) fresh mussels

In the bottom of a pan or pot that has a tight fitting lid, pour a glug of olive oil.  Add veggies and saute until onions are translucent.  Pour in coconut milk and bring to a slow boil.  Through in the mussels and securely cover.  Reduce to a medium heat.  Peak under lid after 3-5 minutes.  If the shells are all open-they are done.  Ladle onto cooked rice and serve with a spoon! 

Kath’s quote:  “It is not a matter of indifference whether we like oysters, mussels or clams, snails or shrimp, if only we know how to unravel the existential significance of these foods.”-Jean-Paul Satre

Love lifts us up where we belong.

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Many Hands Make Light Work


We gathered recently for a good old fashioned working bee.  Daughter (in law) #3 had made too much perogy filling for another get together that she had hosted and invited a gang over to use it up.

We set up different work stations: one to stir the dough for the outside, another to cut the dough, a multi-person station to fill the wrapper and another to package the finish product. 

Not what ours looked like

Son #1’s first ever home-made perogy!

Now here’s where we went amiss. I had a whole stack of won-ton wrappers at home in my freezer and I brought them along to speed the project along.  Had we also set up a boiling station, I think the end result would have been more successful because my perogy portion got overly soft and a bit gummy before I could serve them as a meal.  Hindsight is 20/20 as they say.

We even got out our Baba aprons.

What a lovely way to pass an evening.  Son #1, Daughter #1, Goddaughter #2, Sister #3, Daughter (in law) #3 as I had mentioned and me.   There was pizza, wine,  good conversation and great laughs and we all went home with a packet of our accomplishment.  I’m thinking they knew what they were doing in the “olden days”.

My Mom is the Peroqy Queen-ask anyone who has ever tasted her’s.  Now I am pretty sure that everyone thinks that their Mom holds this title.  If so, send me your Mom’s recipe and I’ll test against my Mom’s:

2 1/2 c flour

1/2 t salt

3/4 c warm water

2 T oil

1 well beaten egg

After mixing, let the dough to rest in the fridge or an hour or so before rolling out.  I have also used a pasta roller for this process with great success. 

Kath’s quote:  “Food is a subject of conversation more spiritually refreshing even than the weather, for the number of possible remarks about the weather is limited, whereas of food you can talk on and on and on.”-A.A. Milne

Love endures.

Jamie Oliver’s Bolognese Sauce


Jamie Oliver is my kind of guy-his recipes use affordable ingredients, he is an ambassador of “real” food, he loves his kids and his wife, his success has apparently not changed his wardrobe and he writes his recipes as if he were standing in the kitchen next to you:  “don’t worry about technique, just chop away until fine”, “if you’re ready to tuck in,  just drape the warm slices over the lettuce and serve” , “it would be lovely if everyone had a go at making things like tarts, tortes or pastries at home…..”

My prized “Food Revolution” Cookbook was a gift from my son and daughter (in law) #3.  This past Sunday dinner (mandatory) I prepared a big batch of spaghetti and then sent everybody home with left overs.  I added a couple of my own modifications and the kids had their own improvement as well.  Here is the result:

2 slices of bacon, chopped

2 medium onions, peeled and chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 carrots, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

olive oil

2 heaped t of dried oregano

1 lb good quality beef pork or (even better) a mixture of the two

28 oz. can of diced tomatoes


a small bunch of fresh basil

4 oz. Parmesan cheese

1 lb. dried spaghetti

I doubled the recipe and used a lb. of ground pork and a thinly sliced flank steak from the freezer.  I soaked both in milk before cooking (a technique I had seen in another Bolognese recipe) and then finely chopped up the flank steak.

Saute bacon with oregano and cook until golden.  Add veggies and stir every frequently until softened and lightly coloured.  Stir in the meat (drained if soaked in milk) and tomatoes.  Now Jamie adds a can of water but the kids think that this makes the sauce too soupy, so go by your own preference.  Let simmer until veggies or to your desired firmness (approx. 20 minutes).  Add S&P to taste.  Add freshly torn basil leaves.  Cook pasta to your liking and when it is el dente, drain and stir into the sauce.    Sprinkle with Parmesan.

Kath’s quote: “The strands of spaghetti were vital, almost alive in my mouth, and the olive oil was singing with flavor. It was hard to imagine that four simple ingredients [olive oil, pasta, garlic and cheese] could marry so perfectly.”-Ruth Reichl

Let love be multiplied.

Sweet Frites with garlic and sea salt


Sweet Potatoes are plentiful in the produce section right now for holiday cooking but our family loves to have them all year long.  They are a wonderful alternative to traditional fries with a burger or fish. 

This recipe calls for an unpeeled potatoes so buy organic if you can.  The peel adds fibre but go ahead and peel them if you are concerned.  Ironically, they are are a great source of anti-oxidants.

2 lbs. orange-fleshed sweet potatoes

2 T olive oil

coarse sea salt

3 T grated parmesan

2 T chopped parsley leaves

1 clove minced garlic

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Rinse and dry potatoes and then cut them lengthwise into slices 1/2 inch thick, then cut each slice in batons about 1/4 inch wide and 3 inches long.  Arrange in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet and toss with olive oil and 1/4 t salt.  Roast, stirring with a spatula midway through baking time, until tender and browned on the edges, 20-25 minutes.

In a large bowl, mix parmesan, parsley and garlic.  Add warm oven fries and mix to gently coat.  Season to taste with additional salt and serve at once. 

Kath’s quote:  “With all thine offerings thou shalt offer salt.”-Moses as found in ‘Leviticus

Let love be multiplied.

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