My Sweet Marie

Archive for December 2014

I made this salad Christmas Eve to go with our ‘tourtieres’. It was a big hit! give it a try, it’s easy, you can make it ahead of time and so very tasty! Ingredients:

  • 2-3 crowns of broccoli, cut into florets
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (raisins or dried cherries are an option too)
  • 1 cup bacon bits
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds

Dressing:

  • 1 cup mayo
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp. sugar, stevia or honey

Directions:

  1. Cut your broccoli into bite-sized florets. Dip them into very hot water to just brighten them up a bit, then dip into ice cold water to crisp them up. Drain well.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix the dressing then add all the ingredients together. Chill in fridge.
  3. Can be made up several hours ahead of time and in fact leftovers are great the next day too!
  4. enjoy!
  5. ** To make vegetarian style, omit the bacon bits and add pumpkin seeds or slivered almonds.
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I don’t know about you but I like a little garlic bread now and then, even if it is gluten-free! I cannot tolerate butter and margarine is not exactly a great option so here’s my latest stab at a garlic spread.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil (virgin)
  • 1 tbsp. canola oil
  • 2-5 cloves of garlic depending on your taste and size of cloves.
  • 1 tsp dry parsley flakes

Whip up all ingredients, using a immersion blender or food processor till fluffy. Use as you would any garlic butter. Spread on toast, use for shrimp au gratin etc. Refrigerate to keep firmer.

 

Enjoy!

 

I think it’s time for some haystacks again! They are nut-free, dairy-free and gluten-free….they will do just fine for one of our family Christmas parties or part of the mix anyhow!!

My Sweet Marie

Yesterday, Heidi was over for a sleepover on her own! We don’t often get just Heidi, normally there’s the Blakie boy but he was having a Mom and Blake day so we took Heidi! Of course when there’s Heidi, there’s cookie baking! No wonder Denis loves having the grand-kids over, I am catching on here!! Heidi says lets’ make cookies but not gluten-free ones, I don’t like gluten-free cookies! I took that as a challenge and I said, “well, let’s make chocolate haystacks, I used to make these for your Mommy when she was 5 like you!”. I forgot to mention they can be made gluten-free! Here’s how you do it!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups sugar (I know, I know, that’s a lot of sugar)
  • 1/2 cup milk ( I used almond milk, but you can use any milk)
  • 1/2 cup marg or butter or coconut oil
  • 3 cups oats ( I used gluten-free oats)
  • 1…

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If you like the hello dollies, taffy or other Eagle Brand treats but cannot have dairy, here’s an option for you. It takes a bit of time but can be done!

Ingredients:

  • 1½ cups non-dairy milk (I used coconut milk)
  • ½ cup sweetener (sugar, coconut sugar, agave or honey)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla.

Directions:

  1. Combine milk and sweetener in a medium saucepan. Whisk to dissolve sweetener over medium heat.
  2. When the milk begins to steam, lower the temperature to as low as possible.
  3. Allow milk to reduce to half in size from what it first was, periodically checking and stirring.
  4. When milk is reduced by half, remove from heat and whisk in vanilla extract.
  5. Pour into a clean glass jar and allow to cool. Store in the refrigerator
  6. Most recipes that you’ll use this for call for a can, which is equal to 300ml or 1 1/3 cup.

This weekend we will have overnight guests, which means we will be up late toasting the season and well, you know, having fun! Having said that when we get up in the morning these people will need feeding as they’ll be headed back on the road! I can’t have people leaving my house hungry now can I? Here’s an old favourite that I will prep on Saturday, stick in the fridge and on Sunday morning when I get up to turn the coffee on (pre-set of course), I will turn the oven on and get this casserole in there! It’s easy and tasty, a side of toast or bagels and some fruit will be all I need for a lovely brunch! This serves 6 easily.

Ingredients:

  • 12 eggs
  • 1/4 c water or milk
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1/2 red pepper chopped
  • 1/2 c chopped mushrooms
  • 1 cup ham diced ( or cooked bacon or sausage)
  • 1 tomato, cut in half then sliced
  • **optional is potatoes 1 cup of canned(drained and rinsed) or frozen hash browns or fresh cooked/diced potatoes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ** optional hot sauce to taste
  • 1 cup shredded or cubed cheese (cheddar or swiss)
  • olive oil for greasing the pan

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, crack the eggs and whip them, add in the other ingredients, except tomatoes. Season to taste. Mix well.
  2. Grease a 9×13 dish/casserole well.
  3. Pour the egg mix in . Use the tomatoes as garnish, laying them in a nice pattern over the egg mix. Cover/seal tightly.
  4. Refrigerate overnight.
  5. In the morning bake at 350 for 45 minutes to an hour.
  6. Serve with fruit and/or biscuits or toasts or bagels.
  7. ** don’t use milk or cheese for dairy-free option. Goat cheese can be used for the dairy-free if tolerable by them or no cheese at all in a separate dish.

On one of our trips to Playa Del Carmen we ventured to Valadolid. It’s a beautiful town with many things to explore. While exploring we happened upon this elderly lady in her Mexican dress, selling Cocada. It’s a very sweet candy, much like a hard fudge, with lots of coconut in it. Well, with my allergies I am very leery to eat anything from a street vendor but this fine lady assured me it was nothing but azucar and coco(sugar and coconut). So I decided to live on the edge and give it a whirl! Well let me just tell you that on days like that I am very glad that I choose to be a bit edgy!! It was phenomenal! It was sweet, chewy and addictive! We bought one and walked away and started nibbling, well we went back but she was gone! I have been wanting that candy since then and it’s been two years! Finally, with a bit of research, I think I have cracked the code! Here’s what I did:

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb brown sugar
  • 1 lb coconut shredded
  • 1 cup water

Directions:

  1. In a medium sized saucepan boil the water and brown sugar till soft ball stage. If you don’t have a candy thermometer, get a small glass of cold water and drop a teeny bit in, if it forms a soft ball then it’s ready for step 2!
  2. Now add the coconut, boil for 1 more minute.
  3. Pour out onto a flat tray that has been greased and/or use parchment.
  4. cool in the fridge till hard then cut as you like, squares etc.
  5. Enjoy!