Produce bags have been on the market for a while now and yet I still rarely see anyone in the grocery store use them! I am not sure whether it is due to routine or forgetting them (that has happened occasionally to me) or they just don’t know it is an option. Regardless of the reasons it is perplexing that so much plastic is wasted use to transport produce to your home.
I have made two sizes of produce bags one smaller and a medium one that is large enough to fit broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers etc. Using recycled muslin and polyester curtains we fashioned produce bags strong enough to hold even our heavy dry goods such as black beans, rice, lentils etc.
I also have added a draw string closure so you can rest assured that your items are secure in their bag
Most women have used a cotton round at some point in their life some use them daily. what you don’t realize is that in a year of using 2 small cotton rounds a day you have thrown roughly 672 rounds in the garbage. When I realized that i thought why not make larger rounds out of recycled cotton fleece, that way I am not throwing things needlessly into the landfill instead they get tossed in a mesh bag and tossed in the laundry with everything else!
These rounds are about 3″ in diameter.
I have been using mine for about 3 months and am in seriously love with them! They are the perfect size to clean off any and all make up and the dark colours hide any staining that may occur due to mascara, lipstick etc… and unlike other brands the edges are not overlocked rather are topstitched so they can withstand repeated washing better!
When making food there tends to be food waste in my case the ends of lemons while making lemon energy balls.
What I ended up doing with those left over lemon ends was to submerge then in white vinegar. For what most people don’t know is that you can infuse vinegar with flavours or in this case smells. If you shake the jar every day for a week you infuse the vinegar with the lemon scent and can dilute with water to create a natural cleaner.
I feel like most of you will cring at the idea of putting sour cream into a pie but let me tell you this pie is super delicious as well as deadly sweet! It happens to be the pie that I get asked to make the most and best of all it is honestly the easiest to make!
Some notes before attempting, do NOT use light or fat free sour cream it will not work!! Bake the crap out of it the recipe calls for about 45mins of baking but depending on your oven your pie might need an extra 15 minutes yupppp you read that right 15 minutes! My way to tell if its done is if it has spilled over the sides. Lastly this pie is to be served cold if not cold them just slightly warm, as it will not be firm if it is hot. I tend to bake my pies a night before I need or want them.
Raspberry Rhubarb Sour Cream Pie
A very flavourful and sweet pie perfect for a summer evening.
Can substitute the raspberries or rhubarb for any other berry mix ex. cranberry and strawberry.
1 1/2 cup Rhubarb, chopped
1 1/2 cup Raspberries, chopped
1 1/2 cup Sugar
1/3 cup Flour
1 cup Sour Cream
1 Prepared Pie Crust
1/2 cup Butter
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Flour
Preheat oven to 375*F
In the uncooked pie crust mix together and put in the rhubarb and strawberries.
In a bowl mix together the sugar, flour and sour cream, once combined pour over berries and rhubarb.
In a separate bowl mix together the flour and brown sugar until well combined. Once mixed cut in the butter to form a crumble. Top the pie with the crumble and place the pie on a lined cookie sheet (trust me it will be far easier to clean up as the pie shills over!).
Bake in the oven for 40 minutes or so, test with a fork and if the Rhubarb is soft and the crust is golden brown then it is done.
*If you think it is done I suggest baking it for an additional 10 minutes or more, honestly just bake the crap out of it!
One of my main reasons for growing herbs is to make this AMAZING butter. It is seriously addiciting and very simple to make so dont let the long list of ingredients deter you, because it is most definitely worth it to have in your fridge or freezer!
I was extreamly excited when I realized my herbs had grown enough that I could make a batch of butter, as I’ve been out of it for about a month or more now 😳. So a bit more on this butter… it is amazing on any and all meat or meat alternatives as well as on any type of vegetables. I essentially use it any time would as a fat such as when I’m softening up onions and carrots for a soup or stew seriously its amazing on everything, and a huge bonus it freezes so incredibly well! When I first made it I rolled it in a log but that was a bit teadous to cut off a chunk when I wanted to use it, that with the second batch I ended up piping it on a sheet of parchment paper into coins and let it freeze overnight then tossed all the butter coins into a freezer bag, so much faster to just grb one or two coins when you want to add more flavour to something rather then to start chipping away at a frozen log of butter.
An amazing explosion of flavour that can be added to any dish.
*Use fresh herbs when possible
1 lb butter, softened
2 tbsp tomato sauce
1 tbsp dijon mustard
1 tbsp capers
4 tbsp shallots, finely chopped
4 tsp parsley, finely chopped
1 1/2 tbsp chives or green onion, finely chopped
3 tsp basil, finely chopped
1 1/2 tbsp tarragon, finely chopped
1 large clove garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/4 tsp curry powder
1 1/2 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
Juice of one lemon
Put all ingredients except for the butter into a blender or food processor and blend until all ingredients are chopped into small pieces and blended well. In a bowl or food processor add the butter and mix until fully combined. Put into a piping bag and pipe into coins onto parchment paper on a cookie sheet and freeze for a few hours until fully frozen. Once frozen put into a freezer bag and keep in the freezer until you want to use it.
With Canada Day tomorrow I thought what a perfect time for this post!
One thing I think everyone enjoys is getting mail when you are not expecting it, of course this does not apply to bills…yuck! I personally love creating parcels to surprise family and friends. So when I found out that my cousin who now lives in Germany was expecting his first child, my sisters and I came up with the idea to send him a Canada themed surprise baby parcel. This was so much fun to come up with ideas of what to purchase or create especially knowing that our very proudly Canadian cousin would appreciate everything in it however cliche it was.
What we had come up with was a homemade knit Hudson Bay inspired baby blanket, crochet Moose, anorak jacket and not pictured baby wrap moccasins. We also purchased cute Hudson Bay baby mitts and tea towel, mini moose license plate, baby hat, two of our favourite (non Canadian) authors, Robert Munch mini books and of course the classic Maple Syrup.
Although it reached them a little after he made his early arrival, it was a wonderful surprise for the growing family.
This cranberry oatmeal cookie is always a comfort that reminds me of going to my grammas after school.
Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies
A chewy and sweet cookie that is a nod to childhood.
This cookie batter freezes well uncooked, best when formed into balls then flatten slightly and frozen on a lined cookie sheet. Once frozen toss them into a freezer bag.
1/2 cup Butter, softened
1/2 cup White Sugar
1/2 cup Brown Sugar, firmly packed
1/4 cup Water
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 cup Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 Baking Soda
3/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
2 cups Rolled Oats
1/2 cup Dried Cranberries
Preheat oven to 350*F
In a bowl cream together butter and sugars until fluffy. Beat in the egg, water and vanilla.
In a separate bowl mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices and oats.
Mix together wet and dry ingredients until fully combined then add the dried cranberries and mix until cranberries are dispersed fully throughout the dough.
Drop from heaping tablespoons onto a greased or lined cookie sheets about 2″ apart. Flatten with a fork and bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown.
Happy baking everyone!
I always found it odd when people would purchase play dough because growing up my mom would always make it. So for this upcoming Easter I decided to make some homemade play dough to give to some friends.
This recipe is not only super easy to make, it also lasts a minimum of 6 weeks, but can last longer if you keep it wrapped up well and in an airtight container.
Will last at least 5-6 weeks and longer if wrapped up well and stored in an air tight container.
You can add glitter or other textural elements in addition to food colouring.
- 2 cups Flour
- 1 cup Salt
- 4 Tbsp Cream of Tartar
- 2 Tbsp Oil
- 2 cups water
- Food Colouring
- If you are wanting to make the entire batch one colour you can add the food colouring to the water before mixing the water and oil with the above mixture.
- You can colour one batch several colours after cooking it by kneading the colour into the dough.
In a medium pot combine flour, salt and cream of tartar.
Mix in the water and oil and cook on medium heat stirring constantly for about 4 minutes or until the dough doesn’t stick to the back of the spoon.
If making play dough into several colours then let the dough cool a little and divide dough into the amount of colours you want to make ( I suggest 3). Knead colour into the dough by either placing the dough and food colouring into a plastic bag and knead until dough is fully coloured or by kneading on a covered surface while wearing plastic gloves.
Once cooled completely place the dough into ziplock bags or wrap in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container.
Happy creating everyone!
I lived most of the first seven years of my life in New Brunswick where my father was born and raised, and where most of his family as well as himself still resides. If someone was to ask me what I miss most about not living in New Brunswick aside from my family would be this amazing brown bread! Its soooooo good that I eat it without anything at all on it (that should tell you right there how good it is!).
East Coast Brown Bread
A delicious sweet brown bread commonly found on the east coast of Canada.
This is a sticky dough which in turn makes it lighter when baked.
- 3 cups water
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup oatmeal
- 2 tbsp butter or margarine
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup molasses
- 6 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 pkg or 4 1/2 tsp quick rise yeast
In a pot bring the water and salt to a boil. Reduce heat and add the oatmeal, cooking for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and let cool for a few minutes then add the butter, eggs and molasses. Mix well and set aside to cool for a few more minutes.
In a large bowl combine the flour and the yeast. Once combined add the oatmeal mixture and mix until combined. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead dough for 10 minutes, adding flour as required.
Form into loafs of buns and set in the appropriate greased baking pans. Cover and let rise for an hour minimum to 2 hours.
When ready to bake preheat your oven to 325*F. Brush the top for the dough with an egg wash and bake for about 45 minutes or until dough sounds hollow when you knock on it.
*If you are using yeast that needs to be activated then omit 1 cup of water from the beginning step and use that water to active your yeast. Combine when mixing the wet and dry ingredients together.
Happy cooking everyone!
It’s approaching midterm time and thus I am preparing to be so busy with school work that I won’t be able to make home cooked meals. So I pulled out my family cookbook and decided to make my dad’s Hamburger soup, which I might add can be turned vegetarian by switching a few ingredients. In addition to this being a hearty soup it is also very freezer friendly, I just freeze portions flat in freezer bags, and just put in a pot to re-heat no added liquid needed.
A hearty soup perfect to warm you up from the chill of the day.
Can be made in a crock pot by just tossing all ingredients in it in the morning on low and cook for 8hours.
Can be made vegetarian by using veggie ground round instead of ground beef and vegetable broth and vegetable, herb or mushroom bullion cubes.
- 1 1/2 lb ground beef, browned and drained of fat
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 28oz can tomatoes
- 1 container chicken or beef broth
- 1 10oz can tomato soup
- 2 chicken or beef bullion cubes
- 3 or 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 8 tbsp barley
- 3 or 4 potatoes, peeled and cubes
- 2 or 3 celery stems
- 1/2 tsp thyme
- 2 tbsp parsley
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 bay leaf
Brown ground beef and skim off fat, set aside beef to add to the soup later.
In a different pot boil barley, potatoes and carrots with enough water to cover everything. Once carrots and potatoes are tender enough to insert a fork relatively easily into them, then add the remaining ingredients to the pot and simmer for 30-40 minutes.
Serve and enjoy or let cool and freeze for later!
Happy cooking everyone!