Blueberry Zucchini Crumb Bars are the magical meeting of two worlds – fruit and vegetable! When the zucchini is cooked with lemon juice in this recipe it magically transforms into bits of apple. I’m not kidding you – everyone will swear that it is apple in with the blueberries, but you will know it really is zucchini. So it is the perfect backdrop for all of those zucchinis that are soon to show up dropped on your doorstep by the neighbourhood garden fairies.
SUMMER! Finally the garden’s bounty is starting to ripen – the most rewarding time of the year. With so many veggies waiting to be eaten this recipe lets you chop and throw it all together to make a most delicious salad. Summer Salad with Feta has just the right amount of crunch with creamy feta cheese and then the salt of the olives. That just means a bowl of YUM! The yellow and orange peppers are a perfect match for the sweet fresh cucumber and grape tomatoes.
This salad is really a Greek salad except for one ingredient- fresh corn! When there is a few left-over cobs of corn after a bbq, this is the salad to make. The corn makes the salad as it adds so much sweetness and even more crunch. You could even add some shredded chicken to the list of ingredients and this salad could easily be a main course. It keeps well refrigerated so you will have lunch for the next day if there are any left-overs, but I doubt it. Don’t forget to pick up a fresh baguette to sop up all of those lovely juices and olive oil.
Enjoy the fresh veggies while we have them – summer doesn’t last long here in the north so we eat as many fresh dishes as we can during the short season. All of those vitamins and fibre are healthy as well as amazingly delicious!
- 1 orange pepper
- 1 yellow pepper
- 1 english cucumber
- 1 pint of grape tomatoes
- ½ cup of Kalamata olives, sliced
- ½ cup of crumbled feta cheese
- 3 cobs of corn, steamed
- ¼ cup of olive oil
- 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
- ½ tsp oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- Chop the peppers and cucumbers into small pieces. Slice the grape tomatoes in half.
- Cut the kernels off of the cooked cobs.
- Combine the chopped peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes and corn in a large bowl.
- Add in the crumbled cheese, olive oil, vinegar and oregano.
- Toss salad well. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 30 minutes before serving.
- Season with salt and pepper before serving.
Lately I have had a bit of an obsession with Browned Butter so I have been experimenting with substituting it in some of my favourite recipes. This cookie recipe for Brown Butter Pecan Cookies turned out divine if I do say so myself. The spices the butter is simmered in lend a dept of flavour to the dough plus the crunch of the pecans and toffee bits combines to make a really good cookie.
If you are looking for the perfect dessert to celebrate Canada’s 150th this is the one- Sponge Cake with Vanilla Whipped Cream and Strawberries! Delicious sponge cake, layered with vanilla whipped cream and fresh Ontario strawberries – dessert doesn’t get much better than this. Did I mention it is red and white? Canada’s colours showcased in a delicious cake that you can make ahead. White- vanilla whipped cream which is a stabilized cream meaning it will keep it’s form for at least 24 hours and up to 48 hours. Of course it is cream which means you have to keep it refrigerated. Strawberries – finally fresh Ontario strawberries to make up the red colour in this decadent cake. Nothing tastes better than fresh local berries. These ones weren’t really local, just Ontario, but we will have local ones for July 1st I am sure. I will definitely be stopping at Emiry’s Berry Farm in Massey to get my load of berries for the long weekend!
Rhubarb = Spring, at least in my world it does. Spring also means lilacs which are one of my favourite flowers- the other being lavender. Funny how my two favourite flowers are both purple – not sure what that means! Back to the rhubarb. Rhubarb has to be one of those flavours that you either love or hate and thank goodness everyone in my life loves it because this time of year everything is coming up rhubarb. My rhubarb plant is a sunny protected area of the garden and it just explodes once the warm sun warms up the earth. Before you know it there is enough rhubarb to feed an army.
Summer is coming! Hopefully…summer is coming. We finally had a beautiful warm sunny Saturday and that had me thinking about summer desserts and ice cream. Now you can have a bowl of good quality vanilla ice cream (my favourite) but if you add a topping, now we are talking dessert. One of the most delicious toppings to make is Pineapple in Caramel Sauce.
If you are looking for a light yet tasty cake to serve for Mother’s Day this Orange Creamsicle Cake is the one. Orange Creamsicle Cake is as light as a feather yet full of orange flavour. The height and lightness of this chiffon type cake is achieved from separating the eggs and whipping the whites separately. To ensure the maximum volume the eggs have to be at room temperature before whipping. By folding in the whipped egg whites to the cake batter they add volume and airiness to the cake. Doing these additional steps does take more time but is so worth it in the end.
Lemony Lemon bars – the perfect combination of shortbread crust and lemon topping- my two favourite things. Bars are an easy and quick dessert to make and the more variations you have in your repertoire the better! The more lemon desserts there are the better as well, especially if you are a lemon lover. When we visited Positano, Italy a while back it was there that I saw the largest lemons ever. They were the size of grapefruits and smelled divine. They were growing on trees everywhere, it was so incredible. Definitely a reason to go back and visit again, and will definitely have to be somewhere where I have access to a kitchen to bake with those amazing lemons.
Baked Oatmeal was something I had never experienced until we had the pleasure of staying at the Captain Swift Inn Bed&Breakfast in Camden, Maine. If you are ever in the area I highly recommend this B&B, the 3 course breakfast that was served each morning was incredible. The owner, Linda, was nice enough to share her recipe for baked oatmeal with me and I am now sharing with you! I have changed her original up just a bit (hope she doesn’t mind!). Baked Fruit Oatmeal is an easy and delicious way to make breakfast for a gang. Another option is to bake it Sunday night and you have your breakfast ready to go for the week- just reheat a portion. Either way, enjoy it warm with some milk or maple syrup poured over it or if you are feeling indulgent a dollop of freshly whipped cream and maple syrup. That would be really amazing.
It is maple syrup season which can be otherwise known as Spring! Maple syrup has such a distinct flavour and although everyone drizzles it over pancakes I love to bake with it. This version of butter tarts uses both maple syrup and brown sugar without making the filling too sweet. Butter Tarts are a very heavenly dessert and these Maple Butter Tarts would make a very delicious dessert for your Easter dinner.