My Sweet Marie

Archive for May 2014

Last week I had lunch with my Mom,Bev, at Rose’s in Tilbury. Mom had her heart set on tomato macaroni soup as it’s one of her favorites. Turns out Wednesday is chicken Noodle day! Honestly, I thought she was going to cry! I said to myself “self, you best get home and make Mom a batch of tomato macaroni!”.  So a week later, I did just that! it’s a simple recipe but somehow feels like old-time comfort food for me. We lost our beloved Rasky yesterday so tomato macaroni was on target today for us and Mom will be pleased when I deliver her share! You see, I make a huge pot of soup, portion and freeze some and deliver to our Moms. This way they have a nice bowl of homemade soup when they feel like it and don’t have to make the mess, just heat and serve! That’s the least I can do for Mom! So, at last here’s how you make it!


  • 1 48 oz can of Heinz tomato juice
  • 4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 tins 28oz of diced tomatoes
  • 1 med. onion diced
  • 1-2 stalks of celery diced
  • 1 carrot shredded
  • 2 cups macaroni (I used gluten-free mac)
  • salt and pepper


  1. Place all the ingredients except the macaroni in a large crock pot on high.
  2. let simmer for 4 hours or till you get a boil and all veggies are soft.
  3. I like to puree mine and you end up with a nice thick soup but you may like the chunky tomatoes and veggies, your call.
  4. Once you’ve done the puree’d bit, add your macaroni, stir and shut off the crock pot.
  5. Season to taste. and enjoy! Great with a grilled cheese!

Rasky has been our beloved kitty for 18 years. We had recently moved to London, little Melanie was missing her pals from home and we thought a new kitty would bring her joy. We were right about the joy, but were very naïve about the chaos that was to ensue her arrival! You see we already had one cat, Pepper, and she was not exactly at the door welcoming Rasky! Poor Rasky, she was hissed at, chased after and hounded by the alpha cat Pepper! She was afraid to use the same litter so we had to get her a separate one, oh so many lessons we learned! That one was learned after Rasky peed in Melanie’s Halloween candy bowl! I thought it was hilarious, Melanie not so much.

Several years back we had to put Pepper down and Rasky still looks around the corners for her. I swear Pepper haunts her as every once in a while Rasky will let out these howls or jumps for no reason. We usually will look at one another and say “Pepper is visiting”.

Sadly, Rasky will soon be visiting Pepper. She is 18, and not in good health. The question is, when is the right time to put down your beloved pet? Is it fair? Is it humane? We had to do that for Pepper and it was terribly sad. Is it right to hang on to her because I will be sad when she’s gone? Probably not. She is in obvious pain, deaf and going blind as well. Poor thing has had a real good run and probably would want us to lie her down.

One of the reasons I’ve been putting it off is the grand-children. How they love Rasky. We usually don’t get any loving till Rasky has had hers. They run to hug her, pet her and/or feed her. They always make sure there’s treats for her and lots of hugs whether she wants them or not.

Indoor female cats have a life expectancy of 13-15 years, which Rasky has outlived so there should be no guilt here. She’s been well looked after and has had no health issues in her long life. So why the guilt? I guess it’s human nature to not want to lay a loved one to rest, to want them around forever. I wish that were possible.

Stay tuned, I’m sure I will be writing about this more in the near future.

sweetest regards,

Sweet Marie


May is Celiac awareness month and to celebrate what better way than food?since today is Cinco de Mayo why not combine all these things and partake in a progressive dinner with some fellow bloggers. So grab your chef knife, a few ingredients, pour yourself a margarita and join us all for dinner! Start with  for an appetizer, then back to my blog for your salad with me. Next you’ll go to for dinner and finish with a delicious dinner with! here’s a recipe for a Mexican Salad that is pretty to look at and even better to the palate! Enjoy!


  • 1 head of romaine washed and sliced thin
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes rinsed
  • 1 avocado pitted, sliced thinly
  • ½ red or green pepper sliced thinly
  • 1 pkg of cole slaw mix
  • 1 can black beans rinsed and drained
  • 2-3 green onions sliced
  • ½ cup fresh or frozen corn(thawed and warmed)
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese or goat cheese if dairy allergy or Dayia cheese
  • ½ cup salsa
  • ½ sour cream
  • 4-6 corn tortillas



  • ½ c. olive oil
  • 1/3 c. lime juice
  • ¼ c. cilantro chopped
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp chilli powder or flakes if you like spice
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Make your dressing by whizzing all the ingredients together and let rest while you gather your salad.
  • layer all the ingredients for the salad in a large salad bowl. The cole slaw mix makes this authentic as in mexico cabbage is very common in their salads.
  • Brush your tortillas with olive oil and sprinkle with a taco seasoning or not, slice into thin strips, and bake till crispy but not brown! Top the salad with these, they’ll add a very welcome crunch to the salad.
  • serve with the salad dressed or dressing on the side depending on your group size.
  • Serve the salad with sour cream and salsa on the side for those that like that.
  • Would be great with shredded deli chicken for a complete meal or browned ground beef cooked with taco seasoning!
  • A salt-rimmed margarita would be the ideal beverage to accompany this salad but a simple pinot grigio would work as well!





We had an early Cinco De Mayo dinner today so I cooked us up a lovely chicken marinated in white wine, sirracha and salsa sauces then baked in the oven, delicious! To go with that I cooked up a lovely side dish to which I shall share the recipe! I hope you like it and get creative with your ingredients! Ole!


  • 1 can refried beans, black or pinto
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1 cup shredded cheese or goat’s cheese
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1 small onion sliced thin
  • 1 jalapeno sliced thin or 1/4 cup canned jalapenos
  • optional: olives, red peppers, mushrooms etc


  1. Spray a 10″ glass pie plate or 8″ square baking dish.
  2. Spread the beans across the bottom.
  3. Top with the salsa,corn then cheese.
  4.  top that with the onions and jalapenos.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes to an 1 hour at 350.
  6. Serve as a side dish or a dip for nacho chips!
  7. Serve with sour cream and guacamole.


I love lemon, and I love garlic and I am always earing chicken so why not lemony garlic chicken? Sounded simple enough to me! I started with a couple of boneless chicken breasts, got out some garlic, got crushing, next thing you know I am squeezing lemons! Can you say yummy? Here’s what I did!


  • 2-4 boneless chicken breasts
  • 3-4 crushed garlic cloves or more
  • 1 large lemon, zested and juiced
  • 2 cups chicken broth or wine or half of each
  • 1-2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 small onion sliced thinly


  1. In your large sautee pan, heat the oil and sautee the onion and garlic. Add in the breast and sear. Cook for 4-5 minutes per side depending on the thickness, just till there’s no more pinkness to the meat.
  2. Add the zest, juice and broth. Stir and scrape up any bits from the bottom of the pan, that is all good!!
  3. If you’re looking for a gravy consistency, you can thicken with a roux or corn starch depending on your tastes. let the sauce bubble and cook up and season with salt and pepper and maybe thyme if you like.
  4. Serve with a nice veggie, and maybe salad or rice!
  5. Enjoy!