Want to be someone you can get behind

Back at work, and not so glorious. Oh well, at least it gives me an opportunity to be a productive member of society, and not a shiftless horseback rider and running bum, that I would prefer to be! I did ride Oats yesterday evening, and it was a fine ride. I do need some lessons soon though, to keep me back on track. Funny, my last lesson was on Wednesday and I already feel rusty?! The fine line between burnout and keeping my strength & skills is indeed something I have not mastered apparently.

Today I also shared a few recipes with colleagues that I happen to love, thanks to discovering them in Brasil. Without further ado- here they are! Yummy.

Pao de queijo- super easy to make and delicious! Use any kind of cheese & it is naturally gluten-free. This recipe does not make that many, so I doubled it to make about a dozen, and you can get tapioca starch at my favourite store, Bulk Barn.

http://rasamalaysia.com/brazilian-cheese-bread-pao-de-queijo/

Mine pictured here:

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Yum pao de queijo

Also this is a super delicious bean stew- Feijoada. With Jamie Oliver’s recipe it can be vegetarian as well- also delicious

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/jun/05/black-bean-pork-feijoada-one-pot-stew-recipe-brazil

Jamie’s version:

http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/vegetables-recipes/smoky-veggie-feijoada/

And here is a song I really like right now too: The Tourist Company, “Pedestals”

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Fall is harvest season

I was grouching about fall yesterday when I showed up for my lesson and was feeling cold, the sky was blah and grey and it got dark during our lesson. Wahhh summer is ending…

Fall bounty

Fall bounty

I don’t hate all of fall though. A big part of our fall family tradition is helping harvest at the farm (read, picking everything at my in-laws farm).

Over the past few weekends, we have picked:

  • plums- both Italian Prune Plums and Damson, and very few Shiro
  • grapes
  • apples
  • quince- yeah only two. Quince is a hard fruit to like…
  • pears
  • rhubarb- still!
  • blackberries
  • squash. So many squash.
  • kale
  • broccoli
  • lettuce
  • basil
  • hot peppers- that seem to be getting hotter every time we pick them, ouch.
  • onions
  • garlic
  • tomatoes
Pick everything!

Pick everything!

It’s crazy, isn’t it! I love fall harvest season. It’s a true joy to be able to pick and enjoy this much from their farm. The only thing I don’t like is the number of spiders in the trees and in the squash plants, and also I pulled down an apple and a bunch of earwigs flew out of it…onto my head. EEEEEK.

A wheelbarrow full of random squashes.

A wheelbarrow full of random squashes.

So far we have enjoyed chocolate plum cake, crumble, muffins galore, dried apple chips with cinnamon, applesauce, squash loaf with chocolate chips, rhubarb and ginger syrup, blackberry syrup and now I am contemplating making some fruit leather. Yummmy!!

So, one good use for fall- harvest ALL the things!!

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My own creation: A popcorn-chocolate layer cake!

My own creation: A popcorn-chocolate layer cake!

Yum!

Last week was Public Service appreciation week, and our work gave us a nice patio event to drop-in and have a piece of cake and some pop and a popcorn. It was really tasty, and having the cake and popcorn gave me an idea…(and later, a terrible stomachache. I thought I was going to puke).

I was going to make my own popcorn cake! My own creation!

And so this past weekend, I did- voila, the popcorn-chocolate layer cake.

What do you need to make such a delicacy (monstrosity?)? It’s so easy…

1 box of cake mix (I used Wal-Mart brand devil’s food, and DO NOT recommend it. It sucked. Get Duncan Hines or something.)

1 bag of microwave popcorn, butter flavour

1 container of fudge frosting

Make the cake mix in two 20-inch pans, so you have two small round cakes. You may need 2 cake mixes for this, depending on how thick you want the cakes.

Cool them on racks, and then microwave the popcorn.

Frost the top of one of the cakes, and layer popcorn on top of the frosting. Make it a good, generous layer- no popcorns missing!

Put the top layer of the cake on top of the popcorn layer. Squish it down really well, it will want to pop up and shift.

Frost the top of the cake. It is basically impossible to frost ‘around’ the whole cake, as popcorns fell out and got stuck to the icing (why yes, this was very messy, why do you ask??).

Decorate with a row of popcorn kernels along the top as pictured.

Slice very carefully- use a big knife and make the slices BIG! (But I didn’t need to tell YOU that haha).

And enjoy! Even on day 2 it’s delicious to eat. Yumm!

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Friday Funny: Bake a cake or something

Friday Funny: Bake a cake or something

A few weekends ago, I drank a bottle of wine (pictured) and tried to bake a cake.

The cake didn’t turn out that great (something about it being really flat, I think I forgot some flour and left it in the oven for too long)…But it was funny!

And to be fair, this is like the best cake recipe ever- I LOVE it. And I stumbled upon it while looking for easy ways to use up like 4 jars of marmalade. Now, I would buy more jars of marmalade just to make this cake, it is THAT good.

Ingredients:

Yield:
1
cake Units: US | Metric
1/2 cup butter or 1/2 cup margarine
4 ounces semisweet chocolate
1 1/3 cups orange marmalade
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup self-rising flour- I used regular and added in baking soda.
1/2 cup of cocoa.

Directions:

1
Oven@ 350.
2
Melt the butter in a saucepan and then add the chocolate and stir until melted.
3
Take off of the heat.
4
Add the marmalade, sugar, and the eggs and combine.
5
Gradually beat in the flour.
6
Pour into a greased 8-inch springform pan.
7
Bake for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted.
8
Cool in pan for 10 minutes before turning out.

Delicious!!