Thursday, December 22, 2011

Baked mashed potato balls

:-) Something new and tasty! I'm sure everybody has mashed potatoes left overs, so you always can use it in this recipe!

4 cups mashed potatoes
2 eggs
1 tbsp.parsley
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup parmesan
1 cup bread crumbs
salt, pepper
1 tbsp paprika
1/2 tbsp garlic powder 

Beat into mashed potatoes, eggs, parmesan, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, paprika and parsley. 
Shape mixture into balls.
Place on a slightly greased baking sheet and brush the balls with yolks. 
Bake at 400 degrees until brown.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Perfect gingerbread cookies recipe!

I struggled last year, couldn't find a good recipe for the gingerbread, so I ended up buying premade dough. This year I decided to experiment and to find THE it is!!! Yay!!


3 cups all-purpose flour, or as needed
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  1 teaspoon ground cloves
  1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
 1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup molasses
1/2 cup softened salted butter
1/3 cup milk
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and ginger in a bowl; set aside.  
   In a separate bowl beat together white sugar, brown sugar, molasses, butter, milk, egg
and vanilla extract until evenly combined. Stir in the flour mixture to make a soft, thick, not-very-sticky dough. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes. 
    Roll the dough on a heavily floured surface to a thickness of 1/4-inch. Cut into shapes using a cookie cutter. Place cookies onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes.
That's all!!!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Banana Bread

Butter it before serving :-)

1 cup sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 bananas (ripe)
2 eggs
1 tsp soda, dissolved in 1 Tbsp cold water
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Heat oven to 350
Combine and mix all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.
Place batter in a greased bread pan (bottom only) or in muffin tins.
Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool for 10 minutes then remove from pan. Complete cooling on a wire rack

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Broccoli and cheese soup

No comments...You have got to try this! goes really good with garlic and cheese bread :-)

Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped carrot
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon thyme
3 tablespoons flour
3 cups low sodium chicken broth
3 cups chopped broccoli florets
1/2 cup 1% milk
5 slices processed american cheese
shredded Cheddar for garnish

Drizzle Oil in a saucepot to cover the bottom in thin layer and heat until hot.  Add the onion, celery and carrot. Cook the onion, celery and carrot until fragrant and tender. Add the garlic and continue to cook for another minute or two.
Add the salt, pepper, thyme and flour and stir. Allow it to cook for a minute and then pour in the chicken broth. Cook and stir continuously until hot and bubbly.
Add the broccoli, keeping the mixture at a simmer and cook until tender about 10 minutes. Using an immersion blender or a food processor puree the mixture. Return to pot and turn down the heat.
Stir in the milk. Keep the mixture just below a simmer and slowly add in the cheese, stirring to incorporate it as it melts. Serve.
Garnish with shredded Cheddar.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

honey mustard chicken breast

2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup prepared mustard
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt and pepper to taste, and place in a lightly greased 9x13 inch baking dish. In a small bowl, combine the honey, mustard, basil, paprika, and parsley. Mix well. Pour 1/2 of this mixture over the chicken, and brush to cover.              
Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Turn chicken pieces over and brush with the remaining 1/2 of the honey mustard mixture. Bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Butternut squash bread

Yummy for breakfast or lunch...or as a snack...well...just yummy!!!!

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup butternut squash
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used part vegetable oil and part olive oil)
2 large  eggs
, beaten
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup toasted chopped walnuts or pecans (or your favorite nuts)

To Make Butternut Squash Puree: Cut butternut squash in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Place squash, cut side down, in a shallow pan on aluminum foil or Silpat-lined baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F. until squash is soft, approximately 45 to 60 minutes (depending on the size of your squash). Remove from oven and let cool. When cool, scoop out the cooked flesh/pulp (discarding the shell), place the pulp in a food processor and process until smooth. Measure out the amount you need for this recipe, and reserve any remaining pulp (either in the refrigerator or freeze) for other uses.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place oven rack in center of oven. Generously grease a 9x5-inch loaf pans.
In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, and ginger; set aside.
In a large bowl, combine butternut squash puree, sugar, vegetable oil, eggs, and water until well blended. Add the flour mixture and stir until just blended. Lightly stir in the chopped nuts.

Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and bake 50 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Cinnamon twists

I love the scent of cinnamon in the morning!!!!
...easy as usual...

2/3 cup brown sugar (150 mL)
1/3 cup butter (75 mL)
1 tsp cinnamon (5 mL)
2 cups all-purpose flour (500 mL)
4 tsp baking powder (20 mL)
1 tbsp granulated sugar (15 mL)
1/2 tsp salt (2 mL)
1/4 cup butter or shortening (50 mL)
2/3 cup milk (150 mL)

In small saucepan or microwave bowl, combine brown sugar and butter and cook over medium heat until mixture bubbles. Remove from heat and stir in cinnamon.
In large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Cut in butter or shortening with pastry blender or two knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in milk to make a soft dough.
 Put your dough on the countertop and knead about 10 times. Roll into a 12 x 8 inch (30 x 20 cm) rectangle. Spread the brown sugar mixture on top of the rectangle. Cut it into long strips and twist each strip into desired shapes, then place on well-greased baking sheet. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes at 375°.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Carrot Curry Soup

Delicios!!! YOu can make it with chicken broth or just with water.

(Serves 2)
All you need -
3-4 cups chicken broth or water
2-3 large carrots
1 large potato
1 large onion
1/2 tsp curry
1/4 tsp ginger
Pour the water or chicken broth into a soup pot, add peeled and cut carrots, potatoes, onions and bring to a boil over medium heat  and cook until the carrots and potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes.  Stir in the curry powder and ginger;
Transfer the soup to a blender, and puree until smooth. Pour back into the pot, and thin with water to your preferred consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste.                

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Asparagus in Sole fillet


1 1/4 pounds sole fillets
1 pound asparagus, ends broken off
2 tbsp lemon juice
Black pepper and salt to taste
Wrap asparagus with the fish fillets, fix with toothpicks if needed. Sprinkle with lemon juice, salt and pepper, then place on foil and bake 15-20 minutes at 400 F.
Serve on rice on potatoes.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Marinated pork roast

oh well...once I tried to make it and it didn't go well, this time I took it step by step and decided to give it some time...

Let's start with the marinade...yumm
All you need is...
Pork tenderloin
a bag
1 lemon, zest grated
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (4 to 6 lemons)
Good olive oil
2 tablespoons minced garlic (6 cloves)
1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Combine the lemon zest, lemon juice, 1/2 cup olive oil, garlic, rosemary, thyme, mustard, and 2 teaspoons salt in a sturdy 1-gallon resealable plastic bag. Add the pork tenderloin and turn to coat with the marinade. Squeeze out the air and seal the bag. Marinate the pork in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours but preferably overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Meanwhile, cut
3 potatoes
2 big carrots
1 onion
Put all the vegetables in the baking dish, add 1 tsp salt and 2 tsp pepper, mix it well.
Place your marinated tenderloin on top of the potato mix and cover it with foil. Bake 1 hour.
After 1 hour, remove the foil and start basting your meat with the juices every 15 minutes for another hour.
Remove from the oven, cover and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.
It's ready to serve!!!!!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Vegetable pilaf

Easy and delicious...not to mention low calorie

1/4 cup olive oil
2 cups uncooked long grain rice
1 large onion, chopped
1 pack frozen vegetable mix (carrots, beans, broccoli, cauliflower)
2 Tbsp. black pepper
2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups water
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
1 tsp. salt

In a large pot, heat the oil and fry the onions for several minutes - stirring frequently - until the onions are becoming translucent. Add the mushrooms, black pepper, salt. stir and cook 3-4 minutes. Now add the vegetables and all the other ingredients, let it boil, then low the heat and cover the pod. Let it simmer 15-20 minutes or until the rice absorbs all the fluids. Done! Now taste it if there is enough salt. You can use this pilaf as a side dish or on its own. 

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Yummy turkey recipe

Thanksgiving or Christmas...doesn't matter, this turkey will rock your world. I mixed a couple of recipes and added some of my own ideas...and my first turkey was amazing!!! I cooked turkey for the first time in my life and it turned out so guests loved it!
Here she is...the lady of the night :-)

I will start with the stuffing
6 sliced of bread
2 stalks celery, cut
1 onion, chopped
1 big carrot, sliced
1 tsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 egg
1 cup chicken stock
1 tsp sage
1 tsp poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

Thaw the turkey overnight.

Start with the bread slices, put them on foil and bake for 5-7 minutes in the preheated oven at 400 F
Cut it in cubes.
Meanwhile melt the butter in a skillet, add the olive oil and start frying the onion, add celery and carrots when your onion has softened. Stir, cover and let it simmer for 10 minutes.
In a big bowl, mix your bread cubes, the onion mix and all the other ingredients - chicken stock, egg, sage, poultry seasoning, salt and both peppers. Mix it well and set it aside.
When your turkey is ready to be stuffed.... First rub it inside oand out with the mix of -
2 tsp salt
1 tbsp pepper
2 tsp poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp sage
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
While rubbing, don't forget to rub it under the skin as well, it gives a good taste to the meat.
Stuffing time!!!!!
Stuff the turkey cavity and don't forget to stuff the head part and prepare a needle and a threads :-)
Make sure you fix the whole turkey, so the stuffing will not fall out.
Next step is brushing the turkey with
1/2 cup melted butter

Now put the lady in the pan and place it to the oven at 350 F, don't cover it at first, let it be in the oven for about 50 minutes, then cover it and DON'T forget to Baste all over every 30 minutes with the juices on the bottom of the pan.
After the turkey is done make your gravy from the remaining juice in the pan and this mix
1 tsp all purpose flour
1 cup cold water
Pour it in the pod, on medium heat, constantly stirring, until thick! DONE!!!

Cooking time depends on a weight of your bird, that's what I found-
10 to 18 pounds
3 to 3-1/2 hours
3-3/4 to 4-1/2 hours

18 to 22 pounds
3-1/2 to 4 hours
4-1/2 to 5 hours

22 to 24 pounds
4 to 4-1/2 hours
5 to 5-1/2 hours
24 to 29 pounds
4-1/2 to 5 hours

5-1/2 to 6-1/4 hours

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Russian Plov (Pilaf)

We call this dish Plov, originally this is Uzbek dish, Uzbekistan is one of the former USSR republics and they cook amazing stuff!!! Originally you are supposed to use lamb in the recipe but I was too lazy to go to the store and buy lamb, so I made it with pork (turned out really good).

So, this is Uzbek pilaf (plov)
3 strips of bacon (uncooked and cut into small pieces)
500 gr (2 cups) stewing pork
1 big onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 bell pepper, cut
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 big carrots, sliced
1 cup uncooked rice
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp crushed red pepper
2 tb spoons olive oil

In a large pot heat the oil and put your bacon in it. Fry it for 3-4 minutes, then add the pork.
Fry the pork on high heat and then it's time for your onion and garlic, throw them in the pot and low the heat. Fry it stirring for 3-4 minutes, then add the carrots and celery, mix everything, add 1/2 cup of water, stir again, cover and cook for 5-7 minutes, then add the rice and 2 more cups of water, cover it and let it simmer for 30-40 minutes or until the rice absorbs all the water.
 Add thr bell pepper, stir and salt to taste, also put the black pepper and crushed red pepper. Mix everything good, cover and let it simmer for another 10 minutes on low heat.
That's it! your Plov is ready to serve!!!!
 In the republic of Uzbekistan they eat this dish with their hands but it's too messy..... so it's better to use a fork :-) Enjoy!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Vegetable bake

Found this recipe and decided to try...Yummy!!!!!
The only thing I changed was - instead of can of French-fried onions, I made french fried onions from scratch, the recipe is right here -
So, let's do it!!!

1 can Campbell's® Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/3 cup sour cream
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 (16 ounce) bag frozen vegetable combination (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots), thawed
1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese

Stir soup, sour cream, black pepper, vegetables, 2/3 cup onions and 1/4 cup cheese in 2-quart casserole. Cover casserole.
Bake at 350 degrees F 40 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir vegetable mixture.                     Top with remaining onions and cheese. Bake 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Homemade French Fried onion rings

as simple as it is!!!!

  • 3 large onions, sliced into thin rings
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups flour
  • oil (for frying)
  • salt and any herbs and spices you want

Soak the onions in the milk for 5 minutes.
Heat the oil in a large skillet or deep fryer.
Take a handful of onions and run them through the flour with a fork to coat.
Fry in batches in the oil, stirring as needed to brown evenly.
Drain on paper towels and season to taste.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Chicken curry in a pot

This dish is Russian, I just added a little bit of curry powder.

For 2:
1 big chicken breast, boneless, skinless (cubed)
1 large onion, chopped
2 medium size potatoes, cubed
1 clove garlic, minced
1 t spoon curry powder
2 tbs shredded cheese
1 tspoon paprika
1 cup chicken broth
2 tbls olive oil
1 tbs butter
salt, pepper
In a large skillet, heat the oil and butter, add the onion and fry it until soft.
In a bowl, place your chicken, add the garlic and curry, mix well, add salt and pepper.
Prepare your oven-safe bowls, first goes a layer of onion, then a layer of chicken, then potaotes. Add 1/2 cup of the chicken broth to each bowl and then put the shredded cheese on top. Cover the bowls and place them in the oven at 400 degrees for 1 hour.
Sprinkle with paprika before serving.

French croissants (Julia Child's recipe)

First of all... This is the link
I adore Julia Child, I think she is precious!!!!
Here they are...

Well, I will just write all the ingredients here and will try to describe what I did, but mostly, you can just open the link and follow Julia.
1 Tsp dry yeast
1/4 Tsp salt
1/2 Tb sugar
1/4 cup warm water (not more than 110 degrees, otherwise you’ll kill the yeast)
Mix the ingredients with the warm water until dissolved, and let it sit for 5 min.
The Dough
2 cups of flour
1 Tb sugar
3/4 Tsp salt
1/3 to 1/2 cups tepid milk
 4 Tb vegetable oil
Blend all the above in a mixing bowl (don’t forget the yeast mix)
It’ll be somewhat sticky at first but after a good rapid fold and knead with the heels of your hands it will become elastic, smooth and will not stick to your hands.
Cut the top of the dough with the scissors and put in in a bowl, cover the bowl with a towel or plastic and place it in the warm place. Leave it for 1 1/2 hour.
Then, punch it down a little bit, wrap it in wax-paper or plastic and chill it for about 20-30 minutes. The chilling is important as it makes working the dough much easier.
1 stick of salted butter
and beat it with a rolling pin, punch it before it becomes like a dough mixture.
Now...Roll your dough into an approximate 9″ diameter circle, then form the butter into a 5″ square and place it on the top of your dough. Fold it like an envelopeand roll into a long rectangle.
Then fold the edges again and roll it, repeat 4-5 times, it creates the layers of the croissant.
After your 5-th rolling, place your dough envelope to the fridge for another hours or so.
Now the magic begins...
After the dough has chilled, roll it into a 12″ long by 5″ wide rectangle and cut it in thirds.
Now take one of the thirds and roll it into a 5-1/2″ square and cut it on the bias.
Roll the triangles out to extend to about and shape it as much as you can into a isosceles triangle (where two sides are equal in length). Now starting at the base, roll up the dough towards the tip of the triangle, then bend it into a crescent moon form, and place it on a buttered baking sheet, don't put them too close to each other.
Beat 1 egg and brush your croissants with it.
Preaheat your oven at 450 degrees and bake your croissants for about 15 minutes. Keep an eye on them...Done!!!! Yumm!!!

Friday, November 4, 2011

shrimp-vegetable pasta goodness

This is pretty healthy and takes 20 mins to make. we are

2 cups dry pasta
1 tbsp canola or olive oil
1 zucchini, cubed
6 mushrooms, sliced
10 large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
4 tsp. Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cup tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes 
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp salt, pepper
1/2 cup shredded cheese (any cheese will do)

Start cooking pasta, meanwhile in a large skillet, heat the oil and fry onion and garlic, add zucchini, fry a little bit more (3-4 min), add muchrooms, stir, cover and simmer for another 5-6 min.
Stir in the shrimp and add Tomato sauce and add basil, parmesan, salt and pepper, stir, cover and simmer for another 10 minutes.
Drain cooked pasta, serve with your sauce on top and sprinkle with shredded cheese.

Chicken Strofanoff

Everything is very easy...and delish!!!
Serve it on mashed potatoes, spinsch or pasta...

Ingredients for 2 servings:
2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cubed
3-4 fresh mushrooms, cut in slices
1 medium onion, chopped
3-4 tbl spoons sourcream
1 t spoon black pepper
1/2 t spoon salt
2 tbl spoons olive oil
So, In a large skillet, heat the oil and add onions, cook for 5-6 min, stir in  mushrooms, salt and pepper; cook until mushrooms are softened.  Stir in sour cream and add chicken to skillet, cover and simmer 15 minutes or until breast filets are tender. YAY!!! DONE!!!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Gingerbread cookies with vanilla frosting :-)

For the cookies:
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup butter, divided (half soft, half melted)
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar dissolved in 1/4 cup hot water
  • 1/4 cup white sugar

  1. Sift together flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the two butters and 1 cup sugar until light and creamy. Beat in the egg until it is well-incorporated, then stir in the water and the brown sugar once it is dissolved in the hot water.
  3. Gradually stir in the sifted ingredients into the mixture.
  4. Cover dough in foil or some kind of wrapping and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  5. When ready, take out. Dough should not be firm but not as sticky as it was when you put it in the fridge. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease baking pan with no-stick cooking spray.
  6. In a small bowl, dump 1/4 cup of white sugar. With floured or greased hands (so the dough doesn’t stick easily) roll the dough into walnut sized balls or as desired (I did mine half the size). Then roll the balls into the bowl of white sugar until fully coated. Place cookies 2 inches apart on baking sheet and flatten slightly with the back of a lightly greased cup.
  7. Bake for 10 minutes in oven. Let cookies cool on the pan for about 5 minutes before removing
For the frosting:
1/2 cup shortening

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 (16 ounce) package confectioners' sugar

  • In a large bowl, combine shortening, salt, vanilla, water and confectioners' sugar. Beat until light and fluffy.

    Wednesday, October 19, 2011

    Butternut squash

    It was my first try and it turned out great :-)
    • 1 (2 pound) butternut squash - peeled, seeded, and cut into large chunks
    • 4 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
    • 1 onion, peeled and chopped
    • 1 (2 inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
    • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
    • 1 1/2 quarts water, or amount to cover
    • 1 cup plain yogurt
    • 1/2 tspoon curry powder
    • salt and ground black pepper to taste
    Place the squash, sweet potatoes, onion, ginger, and garlic in a large pot. Pour in enough water to cover the vegetables. Bring to simmer over medium heat, and cook until vegetables are tender and can be easily pierced with a fork, 30 to 45 minutes.
    Remove pot from heat. Place soup in batches into a blender or the bowl of a food process. Pulse until smooth. Return soup to pot, and whisk in yogurt. Season with curry powder, salt and pepper to taste. If necessary, reheat soup over low heat, but do not allow to boil.

    Thursday, October 13, 2011

    Turkey leftover goodness



    1 can (10 3/4 oz) condensed cream of celery soup

    1/2 cup milk

    2 cups Green Giant® frozen mixed vegetables (from 1-lb bag)

    2 cups cubed cooked turkey

    1 cup chive-and-onion sour cream

    1/4 teaspoon poultry seasoning

    6 Pillsbury® Grands!® frozen buttermilk biscuits (from 25-oz bag)


    1. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 8-inch square (2-quart) glass baking dish with cooking spray. In 2-quart saucepan, mix soup, milk and vegetables. Heat to boiling over medium heat, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.

    2. Stir in turkey, sour cream and poultry seasoning. Cook and stir just until thoroughly heated. Spoon into baking dish. Arrange frozen biscuits over hot mixture.

    3. Bake uncovered 30 to 35 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown

    Tuesday, October 11, 2011

    Meatballs appetizer

    Well, my husband said that now it's one of his favorite dishes...I absolutely agree, it was one of the best appetizers I have ever had!

    1 cup ketchup
    1 cup maple syrop
    1/3 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
    1 tspoon ground allspice
    1 tspoon dry mustard
    2 tbspoon water
    1 package fully cooked meatballs
    1 can pineapple chunks in juice, drained
    Combine ketchup, maple syrop, soy sauce, pineapple, allspice, mustard, water in a slow cooker, Carefully stir in meatballs. Cover and cook on LOW 5-6 hours. Stir before serving, insert coctail picks to serve!

    Monday, October 10, 2011

    Vegetable bake

    I made this for Thanksgiving. It tastes amazing and it's the best side dish for turkey or ham or whatever you want :-)

    I used - baby carrots, broccoli, onion, red bell peppers, asparagus. But you can use whatever vegetables you have in your fridge.
    Just cut everything in big pieces, pour 2 tbs Extra Virgin olive oil on a baking dish, place all the vegetables there, add
    1 tbspoon paprika
    1/4 tspoon cayenne pepper
    1/2 tspoon salt
    1 tspoon pepper
    1 tbspoon Italian herbs
    Mix the vegetables, so all the herbs and oil are married together, cover with foil and bake 40 minutes at 400 degrees in the oven! It is ready to go! :-)

    Wednesday, September 28, 2011

    Pasties aka Uych-Pach-Mak

    Well, the name Uych-Pach-Mak is from the Russian republic Bashkortostan, the capital of this republic is Ufa (I'm from there). So backhome we make these pasties in the shape of triangle and it's a really popular and very old dish.... but apparenly these kind of pasties are also pretty popular in Ireland but the shape is different.
    So, who made it first? We will never know but we can enjoy them now and here :-)

    Let's begin!

    For the pastry:
    • 1 stick butter
    • 1 cup cold water
    • 3 cups plain flour, plus extra for dusting
    • 1 tablespoon sea salt
    Mix it all together and make dough, devide into 3 balls and set aside.

    For the filling:
    1 lbs ground beef
    1 medium onion, chopped
    2 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
    1 tsppon salt
    1 tspoon pepper
     mix all this goodness

    Dust a clean surface and a rolling pin with flour and roll each ball out until it’s slightly thinner than 0.5cm.
    Dust the circles with flour, and spoon your filling into the middle of each one. Brush the edges of the pastry with a little bit of water, then fold each circle in half over the filling and crimp the edges with your finger and thumb to seal them.
    Preheat your ove to 350 degrees and place your pasties on non stick backing dish, I place the foil on the backing tray. Put your pasties in the oven and backe for 45-50 minutes.

    Serveyour pasties with soup. Or if it's a separate dish, put some chili and shredded cheese on top, or you can even serve your beautiful pasties with gravy or just ketchup!
    Bon appetite!!!

    Monday, September 26, 2011

    Delicious greek pasta salad

    My husband said that it was the best pasta salad he has ever had!
    Well, it was really delicious and actually you can make a hot pasta dish out of this salad if you are craving something different the next day. Just heat up the salad and add hot marinara sauce. Yummy!!!

    1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon white sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups cooked elbow macaroni
  • 3 cups fresh sliced mushrooms
  • 15 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup sliced red bell peppers
  • 3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 (4 ounce) can whole black olives

  • In a large bowl, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, garlic powder, basil, oregano, black pepper, and sugar. Add cooked pasta, mushrooms, tomatoes, red peppers, feta cheese, green onions, olives. Toss until evenly coated. Cover, and chill 2 hours or overnight.               

    Yummy potato salad

    It was my first time of making a potato salad and I found this recipe somewhere in the internet, made some changes and the final result appeared to be sooo delicious that I will definitely make this potato salad again, so let's begin

    • 6 eggs
    • 10 red potatoes
    • 1 cup low fat mayonnaise
    • 1/2 cup low fat ranch dressing
    • 1/3 cup dill pickle relish
    • 2 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
    • 1/8 teaspoon celery seed
    • 1 onion, chopped         


       Place the eggs into a saucepan in a single layer and fill with water to cover the eggs by 1 inch. Cover the saucepan and bring the water to a boil over high heat. Remove from the heat and let the eggs stand in the hot water for 15 minutes. Pour out the hot water; cool the eggs under cold running water in the sink. Peel and chop the cooled eggs.
    Place the potatoes into a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain and refrigerate until cold. Peel and cube once cold.               
    Stir together the mayonnaise, ranch dressing, relish, mustard, salt, pepper, paprika, and celery seed in a mixing bowl. Add the eggs, potatoes, onion, pepperoncini, and olives; stir until evenly mixed. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

    Sunday, September 18, 2011

    Apple breakfast Bread

    Well, the taste of cinnamon and coffee in the morning is my favorite. So I decided to make something sweet and cinnamony :-)
    Here it is!
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 2 eggs
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
    • 2 apples - peeled, cored and chopped
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease an 8x4 inch loaf pan.              
    In a bowl, mix the butter and sugar until smooth and creamy. Beat in the eggs and add vanilla.             

    In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cloves. Mix into the butter mixture until moistened. Fold in the apples. Transfer to the prepared loaf pan. 

     Bake 1 hour in the preheated oven, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

    Russian chicken-pineapple spread

    We call it "salad" backhome but in Canada I think you guys would call it spread.
     I would advise you try it on a cracker or a toast for the first time.
    Although in Russia we eat it as a salad, just from a bowl.
    The dish is very tasty because the pineapple gives its sweetness and there is sour of the onion plus the texture of the chicken and eggs and cheese...all of it creates really interesting taste and I really want you to try it.

    The Ingredients (makes 2 servings)
    1 boiled chicken breast, boiled and chopped
    2 hardboiled eggs, chopped
    1 cup of shredded mozarella
    1/2 medium onion, copped and marinaded (just put it in a bowl, pour some boiling water, leave it for 1 minute, drain the water and add 1 tbs vinegar)
    1 cup chopped pineapples
    4 tbs mayonnaise
    1/2 t spoon paprika
    salt, pepper to taste
    All you have to do is mix all the ingredients together, that's it :-)

    Friday, September 16, 2011

    Apple pie

    Fall is here and what can be better that a smell of cinnamon and apples in your house?!
    So, there it is...made from scratch apple pie :-)

    Ingredients for the Crust

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, very-cold, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 6 to 8 Tbsp ice water

  • Combine flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor; pulse to mix. Add butter and pulse 6 to 8 times, until mixture resembles coarse meal, with pea size pieces of butter. Add ice water 1 Tbsp at a time, pulsing until mixture just begins to clump together. If you pinch some of the crumbly dough and it holds together, it's ready. If the dough doesn't hold together, add a little more water and pulse again.
    Remove dough from machine and place in a mound on a clean surface. Gently shape into 2 discs. Knead the dough just enough to form the discs, do not over-knead. You should be able to see little bits of butter in the dough. These small chunks of butter are what will allow the resulting crust to be flaky. Sprinkle a little flour around the discs. Wrap each disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour, and up to 2 days.
    3 Remove one crust disk from the refrigerator. Let sit at room temperature for 5-10 minutes in order to soften just enough to make rolling out a bit easier. Roll out with a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface to a 12-inch circle; about 1/8 of an inch thick. As you roll out the dough, check if the dough is sticking to the surface below. If necessary, add a few sprinkles of flour under the dough to keep the dough from sticking. Carefully place onto a 9-inch pie plate. Gently press the pie dough down so that it lines the bottom and sides of the pie plate. Use a pair of kitchen scissors to trim the dough to within 1/2 inch of the edge of the pie dish.

    Ingredients for the Filling
    • 2 pounds apples
    • 1 cup white sugar
    • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
     Peel and slice apples. Toss with sugars, cinnamon and flour.  Add filling to the pie.

     Roll out second disk of dough, as before. Gently place onto the top of the filling in the pie. Pinch top and bottom of dough rounds firmly together. Trim excess dough with kitchen shears, leaving a 3/4 inch overhang. Fold the edge of the top piece of dough over and under the edge of the bottom piece of dough, pressing together. Flute edges using thumb and forefinger or press with a fork.
    Preheat oven to 400 degrees and bake your pie for 40-45 minutes.

    Wednesday, September 14, 2011

    Zucchini boats

    1-2 zucchini
    1 lb (454 g) lean ground beef
    1 / 2 cup (125 ml) chopped onion
    1 / 8 cup (35 ml) green chilies, chopped
    1 / 8 cup (35 ml) red pepper, chopped
    1 clove garlic, minced
    1 / 4 cup (65 ml) parsley, fresh
    1 / 4 tsp (1 ml) basil
    1 / 4 tsp (1 mL) oregano
    3 large mushrooms, chopped
    1/2 cup rice, cooked
    2 tbsp (30 ml) red wine
    1 / 4 cup (65 ml) Parmesan cheese, grated
    1 / 2 cup (125 ml) cheddar cheese, grated
    Cut zucchini in half lengthwise, scoop insides and sprinkle the boats with salt, put them aside on a paper towel (empty side down).
    Cook the meat and mash with a fork. Once cooked, place in a bowl. Add parsley, onion, garlic, and spices and mix. Cook this mixture in a pan about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the flesh of zucchini, mushrooms and wine. Cook 5 minutes over low heat. Mix with meat and cooked rice. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese. Put the mixture in the boats.
     Place the zucchini on a greased baking dish. Heat oven to 350 F.
    Cook for 40 minutes, sprinkle cheddar cheese and cook more, until cheese melts.
     Remember one thing that Zucchini should not be peeled and ground beef can be replaced with ground pork.

    Surprised Kebab

    Haha I didn't know how to name this dish, so now it is Surprised kebab :-)
    Well, very easy actually and pretty delicious

    4 large eggs, hardboiled
    1 raw egg
    1 lb ground beef
    1 small onion, finally chopped
    2 tbs bread crumbs
    1/2 cup Diana sauce
    2 cloves garlic, crushed
    1 t spoon oregano

    Boil 4 eggs for 15 min, peel and set aside.
    In a bowl mix ground beef, egg, onion, garlic, bread crubs, Diana sauce and oregano. Mix until well combined. Lay the beef on the aluminium foil and place the hardboiled eggs in the middle.
     Make a roll by rolling up the beef with the foil.

     Place the roll on the foil in the preheated (350 degrees) oven.
    Bake 40 minutes.
    Done!!!! :-)

    Eggplant lasagna (Vegetarian)

    This is like lasagna only there's no pasta. Slices of eggplant replace the noodles here. Spinach, marinara sauce and cheese help make this baked eggplant dish healthy and delicious.

    • 1 large eggplant
    • 1 jar marinara sauce
    • 1 cup shredded cheese ( I used Kraft with herbs and garlic)
    • 1 6-ounce bag baby spinach
    • 1/3 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
    • 1 tbs basil
    Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
    Spoon on-third of the marinara sauce on the bottom of an 8-inch by 8-inch baking dish. Lay one-third of eggplant slices over sauce, sprinkle with 1/3 tbs basil, followed by one-third of the spinach and one-third of the cheese. Repeat layers. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bake covered for 30 minutes, then remove the lid (cover) and bake 15 more minutes.
    Serves 4

    Tuesday, September 13, 2011

    Doing tomatoes aka "Italian Job"

    Well, it was my first experience of preapring italian homemade tomato sauce.
    This sauce is so great and you can use it for a whole bunch of differnt dishes - pasta, pizza, chili, minestrone etc..there are too many to list it here.
    The sause itself is very simple to make. Let's are the pictures-

    Just buy
    (1 bushel makes about 15 litres of the sauce)
    jars and lids
    so, rinse the tomatoes and boil them for about 12-15 minutes or untill they are soft.
    Put the tomatoes through the strainer, so the skins will peel by themselves and you will get the sauce you want.
    Rinse the jars and pour the sauce, cover with the lids very tight.
    In a big pot put all the jars together (very tight, so there is no room left - if there is a lot of room, put any type of cloth in the pot to create almost vacuum, cover the jars with a piece of cloth very tight as well, then add hot water just to cover the lids of the jars. Cover the pot and boil the jars for 30 minutes.

    Wednesday, August 31, 2011

    Aggie's beautiful salad

    I tried this salad in Nova Scotia, which is an amazing place and people there are so nice. So, back to the salad...My husband's aunt Aggie made this salad and to tell you the was breathtaking!  
    Aggie, it was so good that I keep making it and enjoying it as if I am trying it for the first time!
    It has such a delicious rich taste and the tangerines make it even more yummy.
    So, as I promised I'm publishing it here, on my food blog.

    Iceberg or salad greens
    1/3 cup of toasted almonds (spread on cooking sheet and bake in 400
    degree oven but keep an eye on them - not more than 5-7 minutes)
    1 cup of chopped celery
    2 tbsp of green onion (chopped fine)
    1 small can mandarin sections (drained)

    ¼ cup of oil (I use canola)
    2 tbsp. white vinegar
    2 tbsp sugar
    ¼ tsp each of salt and pepper
     Mix all the ingredients for the dressing in a bowl with a lid and shake it well, then put it in the fridge for an hour.

    Toss salad ingredients together and pour over salad dressing.
    That's it! :-)

    Monday, August 29, 2011

    Eggplant and Cheese Rolls

    It's a delicious southern-russian appetizer
    1 large eggplant
    1 4oz container shredded cheese
    1 Tablespoon fresh dill
    2 cloves garlic, crushed
    3 tbl spoons mayo
    olive oil
    Cut off ends of eggplant. Cut into 1/4 inch thick pieces, lengthwise. Lay on paper towels and sprinkle with a little salt. Let sit for a half hour. Rinse with cold water to remove salt and bitter juice.
    Brush eggplant with a little olive oil on each side and sprinkle a little salt and pepper on each slice. . Fry in a large skillet until lightly browned on both sides with adding of more olive oil. ( be prepared to do a couple batches.)
    Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine cheese, dill, garlic and mayo.Add a little olive oil if mixture is too dry.
    Spread a small amount on each piece of eggplant.
    Then roll eggplant, starting with the large end first. Secure with toothpicks.

    Monday, August 22, 2011

    Spinach chicken salad recipe

    Well, not only that it is healthy it is delish!!!
    There is a little secret about the chicken... :-)
    I marinade it first. So...

    1 chicken breast, skinless, boneless. Cut it in pieces and put it in a bowl. Add a dash of black pepper, 1 tbl spoon olive oil, 1/2 t spoon paprika, 1 t spoon garlic powder...and something that will makr your chicken just delicious...1 tbl spoon lime juice. Put it aside and marinade for at least 30 minutes.

    Now salad.
    Pretty easy
    1/2 cup cottage cheese
    6-7 cherry tomatoes
    1 small cucumber, sliced
    1/2 cup sliced red onion
    2 big Radishes, sliced
    1 small bell pepper, sliced

    Then layers - Spinach, onion, radish, pepper, tomatoes, cottage cheese.
    For The Dressing:
    2 tbl spoons balsamic vinegar
    1 tbl spoon Extra Virgin Olive Olive
    1/4 tea spoon sugar
    1/4 t spoon salt
    dash black pepper
    Mix it in a small bowl, cover and give it a good shake.

    And back to the chicken. Heat 1 table spoon of olive oil in a skillet and fry the chicken until it's ready to go (no pink).
    Put it on top of the salad and then pour the dressing.

    Goulash-stew alla me :-)

    You gonna love this!!! It's a good winter dish, but russians are famous for their soup and goulash addiction, so we cook good winter dishes even in summer, so...Enjoy!

    3 pounds chuck meat, trimmed & cut into 1-1½ inch cubes.
    4-5 medium potatoes, peeled & cut into 1 inch cubes
    5-6 garlic cloves, minced
    4-5 tablespoons sweet paprika
     2 big carrots, chopped
    3-4 medium onions, chopped
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    3 cups chicken broth
    ¼ cup unbleached flour
    2 bay leaves
    2 tablespoons tomato paste
    1 teaspoon dried marjoram
    1 large red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
    1 large green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
    1/2 cup of red wine
    salt & pepper to taste

    1. Season beef with salt and pepper to taste. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil on medium-high in a dutch oven or stock pot for 3-4 minutes until hot.Add the meat and sear each side about 2 minutes per side until well browned. Make sure each cube of meat is not touching; you may have to brown the beef in 2 batches adding another tablespoon of oil for the second batch. Transfer beef to a plate.

    2. Reduce to medium heat, add the remaining oil and stir scraping bottom of pot. Add onions and a pinch of salt and continue to stir scraping the bottom to loosen the browned bits. Stir onions about 5-6 minutes.

    3. Add garlic and stir 1 minute. Add paprika and flour, stir for another minute. Add chicken broth, continue stirring and scraping bottom. Stir in tomato paste, bay leaves, marjoram and ½ teaspoon salt.

    4. Add the browned beef, bring to a simmer but do not boil . Cover pot with lid and place pot into a 300 degree pre-heated oven for 1 hour.

    5. Remove pot from oven, add wine, potatoes, carrots, red and green peppers, cover and return to the oven for 1 hour.

    Serve immediately... with bread and butter! :-)

    Friday, August 19, 2011

    Pork-Pasta Toss

    Makes 4 servings:

    220 g  spaghetti, uncooked
    1/4 cupKraft Extra Virgin Olive Oil Aged Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing, divided
    4 Hot Italian sausages, cut into 1-inch pieces
    1 cup chopped red onions
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    1-1/2 cupscherry tomatoes, halved
    1/3 cup25%-less-sodium chicken broth
    1 cup frozen spinach, thawed. drained
    1 cupKraft 4 Cheese Italiano Light Shredded Cheese, divided  
    Cook spaghetti as directed on package. Meanwhile, heat 2 Tbsp. dressing in large skillet on medium-high heat. Add sausages; cook 5 to 6 min. or until done, stirring occasionally. Remove from skillet.
    Add remaining dressing, onions, spinach and garlic to skillet; cook and stir 2 to 3 min. Add tomatoes; cook 1 min. Add broth and sausages; stir. Bring to boil, stirring occasionally.
    Drain spaghetti. Add to ingredients in skillet with 1/2 cup cheese; mix lightly. Top with remaining cheese.

    Spicy Chiken curry soup

    Just to mention that it is very spicy and if you want a vegetarian version, just don't add chicken, it will be just a vegetable noodle soup.

    So, let's begin :-)
    2 tb spoons olive oil
    1 clove garlic, minced
    1 cup frozen vegetables mix (carrots, corn, green beans)
    2 tbl spoons tomato paste
    2-3 fresh medium size mushrooms, chopped
    1 table spoon curry powder
    2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cubed
    2 stalks celery, chopped
    1/2 t spoon crushed chili pepper
    1/4 t spoon cayenne pepper
    1/2 cup chopped onion
    1/2 cup any noodles
    4 cups of water
    salt, pepper

    In a pot, heat the oil and add your chicken, fry it for a little bit (less than 1 minute), add celery, onion, mushrooms and garlic, stir. Then add all the spices, stir again. Add frozen vegetables, water, salt and pepper to taste. Cover it and cook until it boils, add tomatoe paste, stir, don't cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add the noodles, stir well, don't cover and cook for another 10-15 minutes or until the noodles are done.
    That's pretty much it! Easy but spicy and delicious.

    Thursday, August 18, 2011

    Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken

    This is an easy dish that is quick to prepare ahead and looks really impressive. A great meal to serve to guests
    Ingredients ( serves 2)
    2 chicken breasts
    8 slices proscuitto
    4 t spoons mustard
    2 slices cheese ( I used brie but any cheese will work)

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees
    Spread 2 teaspoons mustard over each chicken breast.
    put a slice of cheese in the middle
    Wrap 4 slices prosciutto around each breast and secure with a toothpick if necessary.
    Place chicken into a small baking dish and bake for 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
    Serve with mixed vegetables.


    Wednesday, July 13, 2011

    Meatballs with fried peppers

    Here is what I made and it turned out to be delish!
    easy and tasty!

    For 5 meatballs
    200 gr ground beef
    1 egg
    1 table spoon bread crumbs
    1 t spoon garlic powder
    1/4 t spoon salt
    1/4 t spoon black pepper
    Mix everything together, shape balls and fry in a frying pan 3 minutes on each side on a medium heat.

    For pepper dish:
    2 bell peppers, sliced
    1 onion, sliced
    4 mushrooms, sliced
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    1 tea spoon crushed chili pepper
     1 t spoon ground black pepper
    In a large skillet add 3 tablespoons of olive oil, add all the ingredients and cover. Cook on a medium heat for 15 minutes.
    Stir every 3 minutes.
    Done! :-)

    Russian meat soup - Solyanka

    As you all know Russians love their soups and Solyanka is one of their favorites!
    All I can say is ...You have got to try this soup!

    1 lb stewing beef, sliced thin
    2 small sausages , sliced thin
    1/2 lb ham, sliced thin
    2 carrots, cubed small
    1 onion, sliced small
    3-4 big mushrooms, cut thin
    1 pickled cucumber (I used dill pickles)
    1 tablespoon tomato paste
    1 (14 1/2 ounce) can stewed tomatoes
    1/2-1 cup water
    5 mushrooms, sliced (or to taste)
    1 tablespoon flour
    11 pitted black olives, chopped
    1 tablespoon capers
    salt & pepper
    1 tablespoon sour cream, for topping
    1 lemon slice, for garnish

    Preheat a pan with oil or butter.
    Cut onion in thin semi rings and stir until transparent, but not browned.
    Cut pickled cucumbers in strips and add to onions.
    Add tomato paste and stir until mixed - 2-3 minutes.
    Add meat cut in strips (you can actually use any variety of meat you prefer, but above is what I chose to use).
    Put everything in a large pot
    Add can of stewed tomatoes and water to just the top of mixture.
    Cover the pot and cook on medium heat for 2 hours
    About 1 hour before serving add olives, mushrooms and capers.
    Add flour to thicken.
    Serve with a spoonful of sour cream and lemon slice for garnish.