Posts tagged ‘recipes’

May 31, 2013

i’m a bit run down but i’m alright

we’ve been home from our last getaway for almost a week and, though we have almost settled back in to our life, i remain over-the-top exhausted. upon reflection, perhaps i shouldn’t have socialized 4 nights in a row. considering 4 social events in a week surpasses my (anti) social activity in the last year, it’s a real wonder what i was thinking. shit balls.

needless to say, it’s friday and i’m lazy tired so i’ve gone and pulled out the ol’ slow cooker. “why is it reasonable to consider a slow cooked stew-ish meal this late in spring?”,  you ask? because i live on the west coast and she rains. oh, does she rain. i’m damp in my bones and as far as i’m concerned, that calls for comfort food.

so, as i sit here relishing the quiet that can only come from nap time, my slow cooker is cooking us all up some healthy and hearty chili. and, because everyone loves cheesy flour product, i will soon get off my ass and prepare us some cheesy bannock too. first i thought i’d pretend i was quaint and post a couple recipes for you. deal?

be advised: there will be no pinterest inspired photos or other forms of quasi-adorableness, i don’t roll that way. just words dude, just words.

if you are still with me, congratulations! you won’t be disappointed by the bannock.

the recipe comes from a woman i knew in a former life and in her northern tundra circle it has won awards, which says a lot. it’s fab for a whole host of reasons but i dig it because it’s delicious, easy, and can me modified with yummy additions should you be so inspired.

we add cheese sometimes, dill and rosemary to accompany our family’s winter staple: salmon stew, and cranberries with orange rinds when i want to pretend i’m a cute mom (unfortunately, i mow down most, if not all, of the final product before it makes it in to my son’s lunch bag so my chance of bring noticed are literally eaten up).

as for the chili, i made it up as i’ve been known to do, but i have provided the vague details below (that counts as a recipe, no?) in case you feel brave. note: it makes tons so you can freeze and enjoy again.

9 bean chilli


– 1 cup of dried bean and lentil mix, soaked for 24 hours in 2 cups of agua pre slow cooker fate

– 1 kg lean ground turkey

– 2 sweet onions, diced (or hacked up, as it were)

– 4 large carrots, chopped

– 1 bunch of celery, chopped

– 1 yam, chopped

– 2 cups of mushrooms, sliced

– 2 large cans of diced tomatoes (with juice)

– 1 mini can of tomato paste

– 5 tbspns mild chili powder

– dash or so of garlic powder and pepper

– dash or so of prev dried oregano and basil

– 2 tbspns brown sugar

– 1/4 cup h2o

need to do:

– prep beans and veg (except for the mushrooms) and place in slow-cooker with cans of diced tomatoes, tom paste, spices

– cook lean ground turkey on stove top, drain, and add to cooker.

– stir.

– press on (it really is that simple).

– cook for 6 hours on high plus 4 hours on low (or longer!).

– add mushrooms, stir in.

– cover / warm for 2 more hours.

cece’s bannock


– 4 cups flour

– 4 heaping tspns baking powder

– 2 teaspoons salt

– 4 teaspoons sugar

– 1 cup veg shortening

– 2 cups milk

need to do:

– heat oven to 450 degrees.

– combine dry.

– rub in shortening by hand (warning: this makes a ROYAL mess).

– add milk, fold in with wooden spoon (or your hands).

– roll on to floured bread board and cut in to rounds.

– bake for 15 minutes.

February 5, 2013

you heard it here first

my husband is aboriginal and was raised, along with his 5 siblings and a million cousins, enjoying his momma’s home made bread. now an adult (obviously), it’s safe to say that he would do almost anything to have fresh bread still be a part of his reality.

i, unfortunately, have very few baking skills or, rather, it can be more accurately said that i lack resolve when attention to detail is required. point is, i’ve never learnt how to make it. i can, however, make a mean salmon stew and this qualifies me as west coast enough (for what?), by my own defintion anyhow.

today, i choose to share my stew recipe with you. more good news: there is no wrong way. i make it different every time and it’s always good. damn good. like, the best. like, if i had loads of free time, an industrial kitchen, and the desire, i could sell it. straight up.

fyi: this makes a ton, which you can then freeze and pull out on desperate winter nights or if you have unexpected friends over for merriment and a vain need to impress them (no judgement):

general guidelines:

1 whole salmon (pre gutted)

8-10 cups water, depending on the size of said salmon (start with 8, add more if you think it could use it)

2 cans wild mushroom soup (reduced sodium and fat, of course)

3ish cubes of veggie soup stock

2 red onions

1 (regular?) onion

1 celery bunch

3 cups quartered small potatoes (purple and waxy ones are fun!)

2 yams, chopped

2 cups chopped carrots

1 parsnip

1 cup frozen corn

1 cup frozen peas

2 cups chopped spinach

2 cups chopped mushrooms

this is kinda a sweet stew. you can change that. add spices or seasoning as you see fit. dill is fun. a wee bit of fresh garlic changes it dramatically. rosemary smells savoury and tastes great too. fresh chives or leek are playful additions. a dash of curry powder makes it a whole new experience. you know, with soups there are no rules.


– bake salmon.

– de-bone and de-guk the salmon (easier and less revolting once baked).

– chop veggies.

– throw veggies (firmest to softest) in slow cooker (that’s right bitches)*, flake in salmon.

– add water.

– cook on low for 12 hours.

– stir every so often. if it looks like it needs more water, add some.

– add mushroom soup, frozen corn, peas, spinach, and mushrooms 2 hours before serving.

– stir it all up some more. note: it is intended to be a thick and chunky stew. if there is too much liquid to goodness ratio add more mushroom, corn, or other easy veg like peppers or zucchini that doesn’t take long to cook.

– serve and enjoy. we do it up with bannock, northern style, ’cause it’s HA-MAZING (and foolproof).

* alternatively, if you have some masochistic need to slave away in the kitchen, you can simmer onions and celery in oil at the bottom of a large saucepan (i dunno, 2 tblspns?), then throw in the water and all the hard veggies, giving them time to soften before adding the soft veggies and flaking in the salmon.

January 16, 2013

tricks of the trade

to add insult to injury, i’m one of the lucky moms who needs to be hyper conscious of liquid and fiber intake whilst breastfeeding, if you get my drift. as if the constant leak from my bladder and mammary glands was not glamorous enough. alas, no one said being a mom was pretty.

anyhow, should you find yourself in a predicament like mine i highly recommend “grammy’s compote”. healthy, tasty, and the shit works like a hot damn (no pun intended). the only downside is your three your old may begin referring to you as a “tootie rootie girl”, not that i know anything about that.

the deets:

– chop 2 cups prunes and 2 cups dried apricots.
– throw them in a sauce pan with 1 cup sultana raisins, 2 tspns cinnamon, and 3 cups water.
– bring to a boil. reduce to low heat. cover. simmer / stew on low for about 45 mins.
– enjoy 2 tbspns daily w/ oatmeal, on toast, or with yogurt. or, satisfy your sweet tooth and down it straight (hardcore, right?).

it freezes great. oh, and it’s kid friendly too, though i would suggest reducing the serving size, unless you really wanna party.

good luck soldier.

p.s.- for those of you who find this irrelevant and/or unacceptable, i know, it’s true, i’ve hit a new low. lately i am guilty of smelling like milk, i have been known to pee myself, and i like to talk about bowel regularity. i also like tea and i prefer to go to bed at 8pm. pretty geriatric, yah? but, hey, my boobs might be considered perky if i began to hang with seniors and that sounds like a good plan, if you ask me.

November 14, 2012

if these walls could talk

my husband’s family home is 100 years old and stands in the center of a town that has grown up around it. in the face of change, growth, and expansion, it stands, stubbornly, seemingly refusing to be altered or modified from it’s original state. it has seen many a rainy day and suggests, in outer appearance, at least, that it might have had enough of the grey scale, fog, and moisture, and might just melt into the ground, end the fight to withstand another tofino winter, and make peace, finally, with the harsh landscape and weather pattern.

inside, though it is often cold and drafty, it is usually full of family members who love each other and, paired with the fabric of his family’s history, having been inhabited by multiple generations over the years, it is, for that, very warm. it is a damp, dark house, with a narrow entry way, steep and creaky stairs, a number of bedrooms, one bathroom, one living area, an eating area, a cold spare room used for storage, and a bizarre and tiny kitchen. it is so small, in fact, that the oven and other essential appliances live in the large and spacious dining area, which is fitting, considering the volume of people who dine there on the regular.

the kitchen was once mint green, i think, and is now faded in it’s glory. the linoleum is lifted in parts, worn completely out in others, and the yellow sparkly countertops have lost their sheen. like the exterior, what could pass for neglected is, in fact, just well used and unpretentious. it is a busy and active kitchen and i can hardly believe what his mother, sisters, and brothers in law are capable of producing from there. feasts, i tell you, by any other name. i personally find that it lacks counter space and order and therefore can’t think very clearly in there and, because of this, have difficulty functioning to my potential inside it’s walls.

despite this, i love it. i love the ice cream bucket compost. i love the garbage cans, often full of salmon remains, that are separated into burnables and non (a system, admittedly, i have never fully understood and probably confuse and/or ruin regularly). i love that there is only room for one, maybe two adults in there, and i love that when the dishwasher moves in, requiring a hook up to the sink to drain, that exactly zero people fit, rendering it unusable. i love the vinegar in the microwave, i love that there is always baking on the counter (though my waistline does not), i love that there is always coffee in the pot though no one who lives there drinks it, and i love the cactus on the window sill which is so illogical, given the floods that pound the pane, rendering it even more blurry and isolating, as the plastic that is put up in protection every season keeps out the angry storms but limits any clear view to the external world, as well.

one of my favorite parts of the kitchen is a hidden treasure taped inside a cupboard, a piece of worn paper with faded writing, hung above a oversized vat of flour, used by my mother in law (a precious, kind, and giving woman who has raised what seems like hundreds of children and even more spirits) when she creates her home-made bread that is highly coveted.

taped there for reference, complete with a threatening reminder to NOT (or else) remove the #$%&*@! recipe is the simple list of ingredients and directions you will find below. i don’t follow directions well, and often resist conforming to the rituals of my in-laws for some unfounded reason i can’t name or explain but, truth be known, i have been absorbed by this one. years after first seeing the yellowed scrap paper with what i think is his second eldest sister’s writing, and after dozens, maybe more, pancake breakfasts at his mother’s proud and stoic family table, i made the call, i asked for the recipe, it was generously provided to me from memory, and i am the better for it. you will be too.


pancake recipe

1. mix together:

1 & 1/2 cups flour, 3 teaspoons sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 3 teaspoons baking powder.

2. add:

1 cup milk

3. stir until just smooth.

4. in a separate bowl, mix together:

1/4 cup milk, 1 egg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and 3 tablespoons oil or margarine / butter.

5. combine and mix together.

March 6, 2012

how we do

savoury fish cakes:

inspired by my mother in-law and created by me with help from “how people feast, an indigenous people’s cookbook”.


2 cups jarred salmon

2 cups cooked wild rice

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp rosemary salt

2 large eggs (grain fed and free run, of course!)

1/4 cup butter, melted

1 cup milk

1/2 cup breadcrumbs

1/2 green pepper, diced

1/2 yellow pepper, diced

1/4 cup zuchini, shredded

1/4 cup corn

1/4 cup diced spinach

pinch of dill

diced green onion to taste


de-bone salmon. mash. add other ingredients one by one. stir and mix well with each ingredient thrown in. when all in, create 1/4 cup sized batter balls. form to patty. place in oiled fry pan. cook until brown on each side. serve with salad, and a mashed yam, carrot, and turnip dish. white wine mandatory. a home-made mustard sauce compliments the fish cakes nicely, as does good conversation with the family you are sharing with, and a side of of gratitude.

eat, drink, and be merry!

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