My Sweet Marie

Archive for October 2012

For my readers who come here for healthy recipes, now would be the time to look away! Just don’t do this one!! My boss, Patricia is english and I swear to you, if it doesn’t come with butter, she lays it on thick! This recipe is a traditional English tea serving. She tells me that when she was younger, the kids would have this for their ‘tea’ and then the parents would have proper dinner later when the kids have gone off to bed! She had me make it for her on Monday but it didn’t turn out quite the way she hoped! I went by her recipe off the top of her head but I think perhaps I messed up somewhere! Toad in the hole is simply yorkshire pudding baked over sausages till brown and fluffy! Here’s the recipe:


  • 1 pkg of sausages, either breakfast or large links
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1+ 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup water


  1. Grease your 9×13 casserole. Warm the oil in the heated oven at 375.
  2. Lay the sausage in the pan.
  3. Stir your flour and salt together.
  4. add in the milk and water, then the eggs. Beat till fluffy.
  5. Pour the yorkshire mixture over the sausages.
  6. Bake in the oven till puffy and golden brown, about 15-20 minutes.

If you’re looking for ways to cut calories or perhaps cut down the carbs, here’s a great recipe for you! I am always looking for tasty ways to have my food but not have the fat to go with it! This one is a keeper! I like spaghetti squash simply roasted alongside a nice chicken breast or a lean steak but today I am feeling like spaghetti and meat sauce! so that’s how I am having it!


  • 1 spaghetti squash split in half lengthwise
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb of ground chicken or turkey or TVP
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes with or without the spices
  • 1 carrot peeled and diced small
  • 1 onion diced
  • 2-4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 2 stalks of celery diced
  • 1 red or green pepper diced
  • 1 lb mushrooms washed and sliced or left whole, your choice
  • herbs/spices to taste (oregano,basil,thyme are my likes)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1-2 tsp chilli flakes optional
  • 1 small can of toamto paste(optional)


  1. To roast your squash, cut the spaghetti squash in half and rub with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven at 375 for 1 hour or till it tender.
  2. Remove it from the oven and run a fork through it till you have strands of ‘spaghetti’. Serve just like that or with a spaghetti sauce!
  3. For the sauce, sautee the meat till brown in a non-stick pan. Add in the veggies and sweat them. Transfer to crock pot or large pot on stove. Stir often if it’s on the stove.
  4. Place all of the rest of the ingredients in the crock pot on high for 3-4 hours.
  5. If watery, take the lid, add 1 small can of tomato paste and stir. Let thicken on high for about an hour.
  6. **For the vegetarians, it is good with or without the TVP!

Today is the perfect day for making soup! It’s too wet to go out and do yard work, and cold enough for a good hot bowl of soup! I have a bit of this and a bit of that so it’s all going in the crock pot and it’s being called SOUP! Here’s what I did!


  • 4-8 cups broth
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 2-3 ribs celery diced
  • 2-4 carrots peeled and sliced
  • 2 cup frozen veg ( I had peas,cauliflower and corn)
  • 1 small rutabaga or turnip peeled and cubed
  • 1 lb leftover chicken
  • 1 can of cut green beans
  •  28 oz can tomatoes
  • 1 can beans (kidney, white,navy etc)
  • 4-6 cups water
  • salt, pepper and thyme


  1. Place all of the above ingredients or any ingredients you like, in the crock pot. Set it to high. It will take 5-6 hours.
  2. Season as you prefer, I go easy on the salt but you season it to your tastes. Fresh herbs are great but not in the fridge today!!
  3. Use any veggies you like, I like cabbage, broccoli, green beans as well but didn’t have them in the house. Use what you like and in quantities you like.
  4. I take soup for lunch most days, so I like a meaty,chunky bowl of soup. If you like it lighter, add more juice like broth,water or tomato juice, and less veg.
  5. Once the soup has been cooking for about 5 hours, you can think about adding a pasta,potato or rice. when you do so, stir it in and then shut off the pot. let sit for about 15 minutes and your soup is done!
  6. I ladle mine into glass bowls with lids, ready to be grabbed first thing in the morning on my way out the door! No sandwich making for me! Not having to think about making lunches is just easier for me!
  7. Soup is also a great dinner mid-week when you just don’t want to cook. Whip up a salad or not, pour a bowl of soup, hunk of bread and voila, dinner is served!

My brother Andre was gifted today with another grand-child! Please join me in welcoming Alice to our wonderland! Her parents Neil and Dara are anxious to bring her home to big brother Benjamin! I’m sure Benny will be the perfect angel when she does come home!

Alice joins seven other great-grand-children for Mom, Bev Talbot! Not bad, she had eight kids and now has 8 great grand-children! I’m sure many more will follow but still exciting all the same!

Alice welcome to the family, congrats to Grand-Pa Andre and Deb and to Nana Nora. Gongrats to Mom and Fred and most of all, best wishes to Neil and Dara! We love you!

Great-Auntie Sweet Marie

This is a recipe that I ‘borrowed’ from Living Without. I love soups and I tend to make a big pot at least once a week and eat it for lunch everyday! I hope you like this one too. Serve it with gluten-free baguette or crackers or go crazy and have a few nacho chips with it!! Apple adds a bit of tartness to this otherwise sweet soup. Without dairy or  gluten, it has a smooth and luscious texture.


  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium leek, white and tender green parts, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (3-pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 2 medium golden delicious apples, peeled, cored and diced
  • 1 medium russet potato, peeled and diced
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 4 cups gluten-free, dairy-free chicken stock
  • ¾ cup apple juice
  • 1¼ teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper


1. In a large pot, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Cook the  leeks and garlic over medium heat until tender but do not let them  brown, about 3 minutes.

2. Add the squash, apples, potato, thyme, chicken stock, apple  juice, salt and black pepper. Bring the liquid to a boil. Then reduce  heat to medium low, cover the pot and let the soup simmer for 20 minutes  or until all vegetables are tender.

3. Puree the soup. Adjust seasonings, if needed.

Yesterday we celebrated Melanie’s birthday and we have a tradition here where you get all of your faves on your birthday! So we had fettucine alfredo(gluten & dairy-free),  caesar salad with gluten-free croutons and shrimp au gratin! Melanie loves her shrimp, thank goodness as we love them too! They are easy to make, look impressive and taste so yummy! here’s how you do it:


  • 6 clam shaped mini-casserole dish or any mini casserole dish
  • 2 lbs of raw shrimp peeled and deveined( I like the 16/20 or 26/30 size but 31/40’s will do)
  • 1 tsp butter,margerine or olive or coconut oil per dish
  • 1 clove of garlic per dish
  • fresh parsley
  • 1 cup cheese shredded & divided between all the dishes( cheddar, mozza, goats or any cheese you can have)
  • 1 lemon divided in 6 pieces


  1. Pre-Heat the broiler.
  2. Spread all the dishes with the butter or oil of choice.
  3. Divide the shrimp evenly between the dishes
  4. Crush one clove of garlic per dish or to taste.
  5. Sprinkle with the cheese of choice.
  6. Garnish with some minced parsley for colour!
  7. Place under the broiler till cheese is melted!
  8. Serve with a wedge of lemon or lime.

** I found my clam shaped dishes at the dollar store…SCORE! They do the job just fine and have been for years!

Ok, so how many of you actually cook poached eggs? Patricia loves my poached eggs and goes on about them to almost everybody! Whenever she has company from England, you can be sure I am making them poached eggs! I didn’t realize it was such a big deal! I have been making them since I was a teenager, so I thought everyone can make these! Here’s how I do it, it’s so easy and good for you!


  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • pinch salt
  • 2 eggs
  • toast or english muffins


  1. Bring a small pot with about 2-3 inches of water to boil. Add the vinegar and just a pinch of salt.
  2. When you have a rolling boil, crack the eggs in one at a time. Look at the clock and at exactly 3 minutes, take them out using a slotted spoon.
  3. Dry the bottom of the spoon on a paper towel which you have placed on a plate on the counter next to the stove.
  4. Place the egg on or beside your toast and enjoy!