Buffalo Pork on a Bun April 16, 2014

Filed under: Savoury — @ 5:51 pm
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The term “Buffalo Style” refers to a cayenne pepper hot sauce and butter mixture that is the basis of

a savoury sauce whether mild, medium or hot for chicken wings. If you enjoy pub food, buffalo style wings

are a typical item on the menu.

Let’s deconstruct a buffalo style chicken meal for example. There would be the exquisite flavored sauce, crispy

fried morsels of chicken with carrot sticks on the side with a blue cheese dip. Well, this meal is more than just

the sum of its parts. Instead of juicy white chicken cubes, I used the other white meat which is pork for this recipe.

The marinade containing green chives, garlic, hot pepper sauce, thyme and paprika culminated in an extremely tasty

cube of meat.

The crumbled blue cheese incorporated into the mayonaise dijon mixture produced an epic spread that is umami like.

This spread over the entire bun was an excellent garnish for the marinated cubes of pork sandwiched between crispy

thin carrot sticks and leafy lettuce.


I am not overly fond of blue cheese and do not hesitate to try recipes with this ingredient. Other members

of my family enjoy this on crackers anytime for a quick snack. I think I may have discovered an innovative

way to enjoy blue cheese more often. Just by adding a smidgeon to mayonaise and dijon for a piquant

garnish on my favorite burger or bun.


6 chives, chopped

2 T oil

3 minced garlic cloves

1 T hot pepper sauce or more to your liking

2 t dried thyme

1 t paprika

salt and pepper to taste

2 lb boneless pork cubed, or chicken

1 julienned carrot

1/4 c mayonaise

1 T Dijon

3 oz crumbled blue cheese

6 buns

Garnish: cherry tomatoes sliced in half, lettuce


1. In a bowl, mix the chives, oil, garlic, hot pepper sauce, thyme, paprika, salt and pepper.

2. Add the meat and toss together. Cover and refrigerate for about 6 hours.

3. In a medium sized pan, fry the meat until browned and cooked through. Set aside.

4. In a small bowl, mix the blue cheese, mayonaise and dijon together.

5. Toast the buns.

6. On one half of the bun, spread the blue cheese mixture over the surface, add the cherry tomatoes and lettuce.

7. Top the other side with the cooked meat.

Serves 6.

Adapted from



Chicken Ma’aluba April 15, 2014

Filed under: Savoury — @ 7:58 pm
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The idea of an upside down chicken and rice dish sounds ingenious. This dish is called Maqlooba or Ma’aluba

which translates to “flipped over in Arabic”. The difficulty lies in the presentation of actually doing this

precisely so every layer remains in tact in the flip. Easier said than done. Since I am a novice at this, I

recreated the layers to present you with my version.

This appetizing dish is cloaked in yellow with the colors from the spices saffron and turmeric. It colors the

cauliflowers, grains of basmati rice and the chicken nicely. These flavors are very earthy and using too much

would create a bitter taste. Other spices within this wonderful dish are nutmeg and paprika.


I loved the layers of this wonderful ma ‘aluba dish with the soft potato slices, textures of the cauliflower

florets and the succulent pieces of chicken cooked to perfection amongst the nutty grains of basmati rice.

Typically, eggplant is cooked between the layers but not many members of my family enjoy this vegetable.

Some versions contain lamb and some contain potatoes so create your own.

When cooking one pot meals with rice, the pot crust bits are so delicious! In this upside down dish you

could enjoy eating it first since it is flipped over.

The key to a successful flip over probably relies on the size of the plate that you are using to do this procedure.

It should be slightly larger than your pot. If you don’t succeed the first time, try try again.


3 sliced onions

3 T oil

6 threads saffron

1 T turmeric

1/2 t dried thyme

2 t nutmeg

salt and pepper

3 sliced potatoes

1 cauliflower, florets only

6 chicken breasts, cut into slices

2 1/2 c uncooked basmati rice

5 c broth

Garnish: sliced blanched almonds


1. In a dutch oven, cook the onions in 1 T of oil until golden. Add the saffron,thyme

turmeric, nutmeg and pepper. Set aside in a bowl.

2. Using another tablespoon of oil, fry your potatoes until golden but not cooked through. Set aside in another bowl.

3. Saute the florets in the remaining oil. Set aside in a third bowl.

4. Using a pastry brush, cover the chicken with oil and sprinkle with turmeric and paprika.

5. In your dutch oven, place the onions on the bottom, chicken, cauliflower and then potatoes.

6. Now spread the basmati rice over this mixture. Add broth to the pot, simmer uncovered for 15 minutes. Cover the

pot, reducing the heat, cook on low for 30 to 40 minutes. If need be, add more liquid so the rice mixture stays moist but

not sticky.

7. Use a round metal tray to place on top of your pot. Turn the pot over onto the tray, patting gently. Remove the pot or

use a spoon to transfer to your platter.

8. Garnish with almonds and serve.

Serves 6.

Adapted from


Bratwurst Sausages with Tomato Chutney

Filed under: Savoury — @ 7:22 pm
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The ubiquitous bratwurst sausage that is found in most hot dog and sausage food carts is a classic!

My kids enjoy this with a simple garnish of tangy ketchup. There are condiments galore from hot peppers

to sweet onions. Perhaps some day tomato chutney will be offered as a savory garnish that is vibrant both

in the color and the taste. The combination of chutney and dill pickles is divine!!

I have always enjoyed preparing chutneys in my home kitchen. My favorite ones are mango laden chutneys

for my Indian cuisine or onion-y ones for burgers. This tomato chutney is easy to prepare and is the perfect

garnish for your bratwurst or any type of sausages. You can place it in a bun like I have or eat it bun less with

the chutney on the side.


What is a chutney? Definitively, it is a sweet, spicy tangy condiment originating in India that is eaten

with meats. Typically, fruits or vegetables, vinegar, spices and sugar are the ingredients for this tasty

garnish. Sandwiches, buns are elevated to supreme when you add chutney to the savory meats contained


The difference between a jam and a chutney are primarily the onions and raisins that are typical in most chutneys.

Jams are used as a sweet spread on breads, buns and pastries. Chutneys are usually an accompaniment to delectable

meats to enhance their flavors.



1 T olive oil

1/2 red onion, minced

2 minced garlic cloves

1/4 t red chili flakes

1 can 28 oz diced tomatoes, drained

2 T brown sugar

2 T balsamic vinegar

6 bratwurst sausages

1 T Dijon

1 t sugar

6 buns

Garnish: pickles, coleslaw, lettuce


1. In a large pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until

they are softened and not browned. Add the garlic and chili flakes, stirring for

a few seconds.

2. Next add the canned tomatoes, sugar and vinegar. Bring this mixture to a boil and

then simmer for about 10 minutes. It should be thickening at this point. Scoop into

a bowl and set aside to cool.

3. Place the bratwurst in a large pan over medium heat. Brown them, turning them over

frequently and then add the mustard and sugar. Simmer, add a cover and cook for an

additional fifteen minutes until cooked through.

4. Remove the lid and increase your heat to medium high. Simmer the meat, frequently turn

them over until the sauce coats the sausage.

5. Slice the sausages in half and then place on your buns. Garnish with the tomato chutney and pickles.

Serves 6.

Adapted from




Tuscan Style Chops

Filed under: Savoury — @ 5:20 pm
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The robust hearty flavors that are contained in this fabulous dish are irresistible!! It has been a while

since I purchased pork chops for a meal. The succulent pieces of pork are the perfect companion for

the briny olives, lemony slices and the tomatoey mushroom sauce.

Someday, I would like to travel to Tuscany and experience the food for myself. Through the years, I have

read many novels about this wonderful Italian city. I can imagine the simple and hearty flavors of Tuscan

food in my mind. Rows of olive groves producing flavorful and aromatic olives for your every dish.


The other reason to prepare this enlivened tuscan style chop dish is that it is a one pot meal. These are

my favorite meals to prepare. Just think the clean up is relatively simple with only one pot. Some days

the pots are piled up sky high in my kitchen sink waiting for someone to scrub them clean.

This dish is such that if you had a bit of fennel or potatoes, it is simple enough to add into this dish. The

heartier it is, you may not even require a side dish of pasta or rice. Perhaps only a baguette or salad

would suffice.



2 T olive oil and 2 T butter

2 sliced onions

1 minced garlic clove

2 t flour

1/2 t salt

1/4 5 pepper

4 pork chops

2 c mushrooms

1/2 dry white wine

1 sliced lemon

1/2 c sliced kalamata olives


1. In a large pan, heat 1 T of the oil and butter over medium heat. Next add the onions and garlic cooking

until softened. Set aside in a bowl.

2. Mix flour, salt and pepper on a plate. Place the chops in the mixture coating both sides.

3. Add the rest of the butter and oil to the skillet. Brown the pork chops on both sides and then

return the onion mixture to the pan. Next add the mushrooms, wine, tomatoes and lemon slices.

4. Cover, bring to a boil, reduce your heat and simmer until the chops are cooked through.

5. Remove lemon slices and garnish with the olives.

Serves 4.

Adapted from




Mac and Cheese Muffins April 14, 2014

Filed under: Savoury — @ 8:40 pm
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These macaroni and cheese muffins are the cleverest idea ever! The crust is composed of  savory

ritz crackers combined with cheddar cheese. The absolutely divine centre of the muffins are filled with

enticing baby bowties intermingling with cream cheese, cheddar and sour cream mixture. Just to take it

over the top is the grated cheese that is sprinkled and melted over these amazing muffins.


There is nothing more satisfying like a bowl of freshly prepared macaroni and cheese. These adorable mac

and cheese muffins are perfect for a brunch, party or just because you like them. Some recipes have a bread

crumb mixture sprinkled over the top and this one has a cracker crust bottom.

Comfort foods are perfect for cold days or when you are in need of something to take away from a dreadful

day. We can indulge in this special macaroni and cheese knowing that it will never let us down!  Some of us

enjoy store bought ones or boxed versions but nevertheless we all love it!

Next time I will definitely not forget the bacon bits. This is definitely taking macaroni and cheese to another level

to be able to eat this in your hand. Wow!


50 ritz crackers, placed in food processor

2 1/2 cups sharp grated cheddar, divided

4 T melted unsalted butter

1 c elbow pasta or other

2 oz garlic cream cheese

2 T unsalted butter

2 eggs

1/2 c milk

1/4 c sour cream

1/4 t salt

Optional: 8 strips of bacon cooked crisp and crumbled


1. In your food processor, process the ritz crackers and place in a large bowl.

2. Preheat oven to 350. Prepare your muffin tins.

3. Add 1 cup of cheese and 4 T melted butter to the bowl of crumbs. Mix these well and then scoop into muffin tins.

Use your fingers to press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides.

4. In a pot of boiling water, prepare the pasta according to the package. Drain and place in a bowl. Add the cream cheese,

remaining cheddar cheese and the butter. Make sure that everything is well incorporated.

5. In another bowl, mix the eggs, sour cream, milk and salt. Pour this mixture into the pasta bowl and mix well.

6. Use a small spoon to scoop about 3 T of mixture into the muffin tins. Sprinkle the rest of the cheddar over the top of

the muffins. Bake for about 25 minutes until lightly browned on the top. Cool for about 10 minutes before removing from

the muffin tins.

7. Serve immediately.

Serves 12.

Adapted from hip foodie mom.


Chocolate Roasted Almond Oatmeal Cookies April 12, 2014

Filed under: Savoury — @ 8:07 pm
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The cookie jar was empty and it was a dire situation! It ‘s the weekend and there is a shortage of decadent

cookies available for an afternoon snack. By mid day a steaming pot of double chai tea for me and a cold

glass of milk for the kids requires tasty treats to indulge in.

I love baking oatmeal cookies any time. It is the most versatile type of cookie to form partnerships

with pretzels, chocolates, nuts or dried fruits. The nutrients found in oatmeal cookies are soluble fiber, iron,

and phosphorus. Eating these delicous cookies also lowers your risk for higher blood pressure and Type 2

diabetes. Of course everything in moderation.


These tasty and can’t stop at only one cookie are redolent of infused coffee, dark orange chocolate, roasted

almonds and oatmeal. These will be winners at your next party event. The original recipe called for cocoa

roasted almonds which would create an epic cookie.

I have always enjoyed the taste of oatmeal cookies. My first encounter with this type was the famous Dad’s

Oatmeal cookies which were crispy in texture in my childhood. I was never fond of oatmeal for breakfast like

other kids so cookies were the only choice for this type of whole grain.  Over the years, I have tried to add

vanilla and applesauce to enhance the flavor of cooked oatmeal, but alas baked oatmeal cookies is still my




1 c soft unsalted butter

1/2 c dark brown sugar

1/2 c sugar

2 eggs

1 t vanilla bean paste

1 t cinnamon

1 1/2 c flour

1/2 t salt

1 t. baking soda

3 c uncooked oatmeal

1 c roasted almonds, roughly chopped

2 T finely ground coffee beans

1 c chopped dark chocolate with orange


1. Heat oven to 350.

2. Prepare your baking sheets.

3. With a mixer, beat the butter and sugars until creamy and smooth.

4. Add the two eggs and vanilla, beating well.

5. Next add in the flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Mix well.

6. Add in the oats, coffee, almonds and chocolate, mixing until incorporated.

7. Chill in the fridge for 10 min.

8. Drop the dough using a tablespoon onto the prepared sheets.

9. Bake for 13 min until golden brown.

10. Cool for about 5 minutes.

Yields 30.

Adapted from



Wasabi Potato Salad April 10, 2014

Filed under: Savoury — @ 7:11 pm
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This colorful salad has an enlivened flavor of wasabi. The full bodied dressing is perfectly paired with

the lively cilantro, chives and cherry tomatoes. The chicken and the soft texture of the potatoes are

wonderful additions to this wasabi salad.


Definitively, what is wasabi? It is a Japanese horseradish that is a root vegetable. Most commonly found

grated into a greenish paste used as a condiment for sensational pieces of sashimi or sushi. An incredible

combination, I do declare.

Wasabi is found in the powder form or paste form for all of your culinary requirements. This horseradish has

a strong hot flavor but does not leave a long burning sensation like some chilis.


I do love potato salads. They range from vinaigrette dressings to creamy mayonaise laden ones. My absolute

favorite one is the potato salad that contains loads of boiled eggs smashed into it and garnished with

crispy bits of bacon.

This un typical ingredient in this wasabi potato salad is very refreshing.. We can constantly tweak a recipe

by being innovative and discover something sensational. This recipe caught my eye and I was not

disappointed by the uniqueness of the dressing.


1 large seedless cucumber

1/4 t salt

1 1/2 T sesame oil

2 t veg oil

1 T rice wine vinegar

1 1/2 t wasabi paste or to your taste

1 lb small potatoes, cut in half and then again

salt and pepper to taste

1 c grape tomatoes

3 T chopped cilantro

2 T chopped chives

1 T sesame seeds

Optional: leftover chicken


1. Trim and peel the cucumber. Cut in half crosswise. Using a peeler, peel

long thin strips. Throw out the centre seed area.

2. Place the strips in a colander over a bowl, toss with salt and set aside for 30 min.

3. In a large bowl, whisk sesame oil, veg oil, vinegar and wasabi together.

4. In a large pot, steam the potatoes for 20 min. Add these to the dressing, tossing well.

5. Add tomatoes, cilantro and chives and chicken if using and toss together. Season with salt and pepper.

6. Now rinse the cucumber strips under cold water, drain and then gently squeeze the water


7. Place the cucumber strips on a large platter. Scoop the potato salad over the strips. Sprinkle

the sesame seeds over this.

Serves 4.

Adapted from





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