All posts tagged: Spring

Maltese Stuffed Artichokes

Of all the delicious spring vegetables that are in season right now, the gorgeous globe artichoke is one of my favourites. Not only do they taste amazing when cooked, I love the springy, flower-like look of them in general. When uncooked, the tightly packed, overlapping leaves on the artichoke looks like a budding flower, and then when it’s all cooked, the leaves open up and it looks like it has magically bloomed. So cute! If you have ever heard the saying “With every rose comes its thorns”, this definitely applies to the artichoke…almost literally. The most prized part of the artichoke is the heart. When cooked, it is soft, creamy and meaty and is definitely the reward of the vegetable. But in order to get to the heart, you have to get passed the prickly leaves and spiny thistle inside of it. At the center of the artichoke, there is a thistle called the “choke”. My grandma (who is Maltese) always used to say that if you ate the “choke” you would choke. I was …

Poblano Peppers Stuffed with Chicken & Cheese

Cinco de Mayo is just a few days away and to celebrate, I have come up with a fantastic recipe that is perfect for the occasion: Poblano Peppers Stuffed with Chicken and Cheese. This recipe is my take on Chiles Rellenos, a classic Mexican dish made with cheese-stuffed Poblano peppers that are breaded, deep fried and topped with a luxurious red salsa. While I absolutely love Chiles Rellenos (and order them from restaurants every time they are on the menu), they are quite a bit of work to make at home with all the breading and deep frying. This recipe lightens up the classic Chiles Rellenos recipe by avoiding the breading and deep frying, so it’s much healthier for you and is a great keto meal! If you have never had Poblano peppers before, you are missing out! These large, dark green peppers are very common in Mexican dishes and are mildly spicy. They are much less spicy than a jalapeno, but are a bit spicier than a regular sweet bell pepper. They are also …

West Coast Niçoise Salad

As we progress through the spring season, I am now looking to make some lighter and healthier meals. Think lots of fresh veggies, healthy grains, and fish. So far, I have come up with some amazing recipes  that have been super refreshing and perfect for the warmer days to come. This week, I’m sharing one of the best spring/summer salads out there: a Niçoise Salad– but with a little twist 😉 First off, if you have never had a Niçoise Salad before, make it your mission to make this recipe ASAP. It is a composed salad meaning that the ingredients are cooked separately and assembled together. The original concept for this salad originated in a town called Nice in the south of France in the early 20th century (according to Wikipedia) and is still a very popular dish in the region today. The salad not only gets its name from the city of Nice, but also from the Niçoise olives that are one of the staples of this salad. Niçoise olives are dark black, round, …

Easter Dinner Menu

Celebrate Easter stress-free with this elegant and easy spring-inspired menu. I have planned out a wonderful dinner spread including a main dish, two sides and a show-stopping dessert that will not only thrill your guests, but make things easy on you so that you can enjoy the meal as well. These recipes are a piece of cake! Actually, the last one really is 😛 Apricot Chutney Glazed Ham For me, a nice home cooked ham is always the star of the show on Easter— I simply cannot do Easter without it! For a few years now, I have typically make a Hawaiian-style ham (just like my mom makes) with a sweet and spicy pineapple sauce… and adorned with pineapple rings of course! But this year I wanted to change up my regular ham recipe, so I came up with this tasty Apricot Chutney Glazed Ham. The Apricot Chutney can be made a few days before your celebration, which comes in handy on the big day, so all you need to do is take it out …

What’s In Season: Spring

The start to the spring season has officially begun today and I couldn’t be happier! Pink, purple and yellow flowers have begun popping up all over the city and little lime green buds have been emerging from the trees- it’s a start of a fresh new season! Besides these tell-tale signs of spring, what I mostly look forward to this season is the wonderful new produce that is hitting the market shelves. Don’t get me wrong, I love winter veggies, but there is only so much cabbage, kale and potatoes you can eat. Spring brings fresh salad greens, tender asparagus spears, crunchy radish and rhubarb, colourful chard, artichokes and refreshing herbs- all of which can brighten up any spring dish. What’s more is that these spring foods are delicate and tasty on their own , so you don’t have to do too much to them to make them taste good. Just keep it simple by tossing them into a salad, or steaming them quickly to enjoy as a side. Check out the fresh produce that …

Frosé All Day

There has been a very strong obsession with rosé wine lately. The phrase “Rosé All Day” has become a mantra of many millenials who enjoy sipping on this tasty pink beverage. This phrase has been emblazoned across shirts, phone cases, and even swimsuits (lol) and everyone is just drinking it up! While it’s a little obnoxious, and basic AF, there truly is a lot to celebrate with this delicious type of wine. Rosé is produced in three ways. The first and most common way to make rosé is through maceration. In this process, red grapes are placed into the white wine and are left so sit and macerate for a period of time. The red colour from the grapes bleed out into the wine, producing a pink colour. It’s basically like letting a teabag steep in a cup of water. The longer the red grapes sit in the wine, the darker the colour gets. The second way to make rosé is to blend the wine. In this process, red wine is simply added to a …

Herb-Stuffed Pork Loin (almost Porchetta)

You guys, I’m literally crying. I just created this recipe for Herb-Stuffed Pork Loin and I am just over the moon. This salty, porky, herby roast is heaven and you definitely have to try this this spring! We picked up a large pork loin at Costco a few weeks ago for a really good price (I know, I know….Costco isn’t always local…but for this price, we couldn’t pass it up). We sliced the loin up into various pieces, making sure to save 2 large portions for roasts. Typically, I make pork loin in the fall with stewed apples and onions and various fall spices such as cinnamon and cloves, but I was just inkling to make a tasty summer pork loin roast for us. When I think of spring, one of the first things that comes to mind is herbs. Parsley definitely comes first, followed by oregano and basil (more of summer herbs). But then out of the blue came sage (a fall/winter herb) and I knew I was on to something. Herbs + pork…maybe …

Patio-Perfect Red Wine Sangria

Looks like we are 2-0 for sunny Fridays this month! How perfect is that for my #PatioSeries?! For this weeks post, I present the patio drink of all patio drinks: sangria. Let’s be real…I couldn’t do a #PatioSeries without my recipe for Patio-Perfect Red Wine Sangria! I love everything about sangria: First, there is red wine involved- enough said. Second, there is some Triple Sec in there which gives the sangria a nice orangy and boozy kick. Typically, most sangria recipes also call for the addition of brandy. I decided to omit it in my recipe since brandy is not really my favourite flavour, and with the addition of orange juice and sparking water (also a much cheaper alternative) you still get a great tasting sangria. Third, sangria is the perfect drink + snack combo. If you happen to get a little hungry while sipping away on your sangria, simply snack on the alcohol soaked fruit. It’s just like in university days when you added gummy bears to a vodka drink, only much healthier with …

Rhubarb Collins

Patio season has finally arrived in Vancouver! After the long and rainy spring that we had this year, I think that everyone is the city is happy that the sun and warm weather is back. I know I sure am! To celebrate the start of Patio Season (and to start pre-gaming for summer!), I have come up with a special “Patio Series” theme for my blog this June! Every Friday, I will be posting a special cocktail that you can make to kick off the weekend. These recipes feature local and seasonal ingredients- right down to the alcohol. Yes, you read that right! Vancouver has a wonderful distillery and craft beer scene which I am going to take full advantage of 🙂 As a bonus, I will be posting a few extra cocktail recipes in throughout the month of June (i.e. not just on Friday’s) so keep your eyes open for them! To kick off the start of the series, I present my Rhubarb Collins, a spring-like play on a Tom Collins. A regular Tom Collins …

Coconut & Date Bars

Apples with nut butter. Bananas. Carrot sticks and hummus. Frozen grapes. A handful of mixed nuts. I’m stuck in a healthy snack rut. 🙁 As good as I am with coming up with new recipes, the meal that I struggle with the most is snacks. While I’m all for eating snacks (I mean who isn’t- snacks are amazing and prevent you from getting hangry), after eating the same ones over and over again, it gets a bit boring. Enter my Coconut & Date Bars. Made with sweet and sticky Medjool dates, shredded coconut, lemon zest, and toasted walnuts, this easy no-bake snack can be whipped up in 10 minutes. They’re basically date bars without the flour and butter, making these bars a perfectly healthy snack that satisfies your sweet cravings. They’re so sweet naturally that they can even be called a dessert. Yes, I said it, dessert. Add these Coconut & Date Bars into your healthy snack repertoire and your belly will thank you. See the recipe here! Items photographed: “Groc” Succulent plant: Kermodei Living Art, Parliament …