APPLE PEAR CRUMBLE February 22, 2012

Good grief has it really been THAT long???  Well, I guess it has, and I’m confident with my excuse: new motherhood.  I welcomed the best thing EVER into my life last year and it’s been one hellova rollercoasster ride since.  Poopy diapers and tantrums aside, I still love love love to cook and bake.  So that’s that.

Here’s a great recipe for one of my autumnal faves … Apple Crumble.  This version is modified to be GLUTEN FREE that has a slightly almond twist and incorporates pears as well.  It’s a quick and elegant way to use up any apples or pears you just know will go if you don’t use them soon, and is super easy to prep.  Now that time is of the essence (crazy toddler running around), making food that is healthy AND ready F-A-S-T is more important than ever.



1/3 cup sliced almonds
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup almond flour (or oats)
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground ginger (this is optional)
3 tbsp butter (at room temp)


3 tbsp almond flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. ground ginger (this is optional)
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 pounds apples (about 4 medium sized)
1 1/2 pounds pears (about 4 medium sized)
1/2 cup dried cranberries or craisins or raisins
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp almond or vanilla extract


1) Grease an 8″ or a 9″ square baking dish

2) Peel, core, and slice apples and pears.


* In a medium bowl, combine sliced almonds, flour, sugar, cinnamon and ginger

* Add butter to mixture, and combine ingredients and butter until mixture resembles loose crumbs (best to use your fingers!)


* In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, cinnamon and ginger, then add apples and pears, cranberries, lemon juice and almond extract.

* Mix fruit with the dry ingredients to coat, being careful not to break up the fruit (again – best to gently use your fingers!)

3) Transfer FILLING (fruit mixture) to the baking dish, and sprinkle TOPPING mixture evenly over top.

4) Bake at 375° F for approx 30-35 min or until topping is starting to turn golden brown, and fruit juices bubble.

5) Cool slightly before serving


– you can serve with whipped cream or ice cream

– can be served warm or cold


Much Ado About Mache: Avocado, Grapefruit & Mache Salad March 24, 2010

I am having a love affair lately with MACHE.  What’s that you say?  It’s a delicat and gorgeous little leaf that is soooo good for you and so yummers that you’ll be calling it old spinster spinach’s younger, prettier, healthier little sister.  It may not be readily available in your area (also goes by Lambs Lettuce), but if you find it…GET IT!  No regrets.  Trust me.  Why all the fuss? Mache is not only a natural anti-stresser, thanks to its high vitamin B9 content (160g B9 per 100g), but it is also has natural anti-fatigue and anti-depressive properties!  Brills!

Just take a look at this 100g breakdown:

* At 160mg, it contains almost half the recommended daily amount of vitamin B9

* Dairy-free?  No problem.  Mache has almost 40g of calcium.

* Low on the iron? 2.2 mg!

* With 39 mg of vitamin C, you can skip the sugary juice in the morn and not feel bad.

* 4g fibre = happy innerds!



1 tsp Dijon mustard

2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil

4-6 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 medium pink grapefruit, peeled, sectioned and de-membraned

1 medium avocado, sliced

2-3 cups mache (no stems)




For the mustard dressing =

In the salad bowl, mix mustard well with oil; add juice and continue to blend until thoroughly blended (salt to taste).

For the salad =

1) Place grapfruit sections and sliced avocado in a med-large bowl, then gradually add a few handfuls of mache leaves at a time and toss gently.

2) Pour dressing over and toss gently, then serve.


“Couldn’t Be Easier” Avocado Salad March 13, 2008

This salad has 4 main ingredients, and makes one hellova healthy start to any meal. It is so quick and easy and tasty, and is rich in vitamins and creamy avocado goodness.

1 large head romaine lettuce
1 large tomato chopped
1 small red bell pepper, cut very thinly
1/2 medium avocado, cut into chunks
2 TBSP coarsely chopped walnuts (optional)

2 TBSP lemon juice
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
extra virgin olive oil, to taste
Salt and pepper, to taste

1) Chop romaine leaves into bite size portions, and rinse in cold water (or spin lettuce dry, if you have a salad spinner).
2) Place all salad ingredients into a bowl.
3) In a separate small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper and toss with salad greens (sprinkle with chopped walnuts, if you wish).


Glass Noodle Salad January 24, 2008

Last year I discovered yam noodles (also known as shirataki or konnyaku) – cheap, delicious, and are virtually fat/carb/calorie free! They take on any flavour, and have a great smooth texture to them. You can find these in any Asian supermarket.

2 ounces yam noodles (dried or packed in water and drained)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups shredded green cabbage
1 cup snow peas, trimmed and cut in half crosswise
1 medium zucchini, shredded
1/2 red bell pepper, julienned
1/2 cup raw macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped
4 large button mushrooms, sliced (shitake mushrooms work well too)
3 green onions, chopped
2 tbsp each canola and sesame oil
2-3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp soy sauce substitute (or regular soy sauce if you can want)
1 tbsp maple syrup
1-2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
Fresh cilantro or basil


1) Fill a large saucepan 2/3 full with water, add salt, and bring to a boil over high heat.

2) Add dried yam noodles into boiling water, and keeping the water at a gentle boil, cook for about 10 minutes (noodles should be transparent and soft). Skip this step if using water-packed yam noodles.

3) Drain noodles in a colander, cut with a knife or scissors into 2-3 inch lengths, and toss pieces into a large mixing bowl.

4) Add remaining ingredients, except sesame seeds and cilantro, and toss well to blend the flavors.

5) Transfer salad to a serving bowl and garnish with toasted sesame seeds and fresh herbs (to taste).

Try some additions/variations for this salad – bean sprouts, extra-firm stir-fried tofu, cashews.


Crunchy Thai-Style Salad with Mango January 16, 2008

Fresh herbs, sweet mango and a bt of heat … now that’s an awesome combo. That’s what I love about Thai food in general: the ability to combine sweet, savory, sour and spice all in one delicious bite. This salad will not disappoint!



1 long English cucumber (leave the skin left on) seeded and julienned

1 crisp red pepper, cored and julienned

1 medium ripe mango, julienned (don’t pick an overly ripe mango – the salad will be mushy if you do)

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

1/4 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves

1/4 cup shredded fresh basil leaves

For the Dressing:

1/3 cup freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice

1 1/2 tbsp medium-light palm sugar or soft brown sugar

1 large garlic clove crushed

1 mild or hot fresh chili, seeded and finely minced (you can used dried here too)

1/3 cup unsalted roasted peanuts, chopped

few sprigs fresh cilantro leaves to garnish

1. Mix the cucumber, pepper strips, mango strips, sliced red onion, basil and cilantro in a salad bowl.
2. To make the dressing, in a small bowl, whisk together the lime or lemon juice, sugar, garlic and chili.
3. Pour over the salad and toss to mix.
4. Sprinkle chopped peanuts over the salad and give it another light toss.
5. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves and enjoy!