Entries tagged with “kids”.

I’ve made several batches of fruit leather in the past few weeks, but the kids keep eating them all before I can get some photos. Hah, I finally won!

Fruit leather is really simple to make, and you don’t even need a dehydrator–you can make them in your oven.

We’ve tried a few different fruit combinations: Apple-raspberry, apple-blueberry, apple-cinnamon, and apple-blackberry. They are all delicious! My favourite is the apple-raspberry. And the apple-blueberry. Okay, maybe all of them.

Cooking the apples and blackberries for fruit leather.

I love my immersion blender.

Blackberries and raspberries are very seedy, so I recommend straining the purée to get rid of some of the seeds.

Cooking the fruit leather on the soapstone-topped woodstove. The soapstone never gets too hot.

Homemade Fruit Leather Recipe


3 cups chopped, peeled fruit


Preheat oven to 150°F.

Place fruit in a medium saucepan over moderate heat and cook until soft. Purée and strain out seeds if you’d like.

Lightly brush a silpat- or parchment paper-lined baking tray with canola or grapeseed oil. Spread purée 1/4″ thick onto silpat or parchment.

Cook in oven for 6-8 hours, or until the fruit leather is no longer sticky to the touch. It works best to prop the oven door open with a wooden spoon to allow moisture to escape.

Cool on a wire rack.

Slice into strips with scissors and enjoy!

Store in an airtight container for 1-2 weeks. You can keep these in the freezer too.

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Wed 17 Oct 2012

Spiced Pumpkin Muffins

Posted by admin under Eat in season, Home, Recipes
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Living in our tiny village, which offers only yoga or karate for children, the kids need to be run up the coast or down the coast to their after-school activities. I drive carpool down the coast on Wednesdays, dropping off two kids here, two kids and their bikes there, (recycling), and picking up one from soccer practice before collecting two of the original four and heading back home. So long as nobody throws anything new into the mix, it should work.

There’s just enough time for the kids to get a snack in before we leave, so I’ve been baking muffins for after-school snack each week. This week, it was pumpkin spice muffins.

Pumpkin spice muffin with butter

I adapted my favourite oatmeal-berry muffin recipe and came up with these. They are delicious.

Pumpkin Spice muffin

And they’re a great way to use up the cream cheese frosting that I defrosted just to find out what it was.

Pumpkin spice muffin with cream cheese frosting

Pumpkin Spice Muffin Recipe

1 cup wholewheat flour

2 cups unbleached flour

1 cup rolled oats

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tbsp baking powder

2 tsp ground ginger

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

3/4 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

1-15 oz can pumpkin purée

1/4 cup canola oil

1 1/2 cups milk

Preheat oven to 375ºF. Brush a 12-muffin tray with oil.

Combine flours, oats, baking soda, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add in eggs, pumpkin, oil, and milk and stir to combine.

Spoon into muffin tray. The cups will be pretty full.

Bake at 375ºF for 23-25 mins. Allow to cool completely before attempting to remove from tray.

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Wed 10 Oct 2012

Minestrone Soup

Posted by admin under Eat in season, Home, Recipes
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The weather is turning cooler and the garden is winding down, so I plan to make a big batch of minestrone to use up the last of my zucchini.

Minestrone Soup recipe from SPOON: Soup, Stew & Chowder Recipes (Summer) (Cooking in Season #2)

I love having this soup in the freezer; with a loaf of crusty bread and a quick salad, it makes a great dinner after busy afternoons of running the kids to all of their activities.

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Sun 1 Jul 2012

I Eat My Peas With Honey

Posted by admin under Home, In the garden
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The weather on the Sunshine Coast is really more of a liquid sunshine. I optimistically start dozens of tomato seedlings every year, only to have them get pummeled by rain 4 years out of 5. There are two things I can grow with success every year though–garlic and peas.

Funny thing about peas–they don’t care for too much sun. If you just hint to them that it’s summer, they’ll grow inches a day.

This year I planted five varieties of peas. Since I can never plant just a few seeds (what if some don’t grow?) I have a pea jungle. The kids love picking them, and how can I complain when they’re eating vegetables? The deer also love to eat them. The peas, not the kids. I do complain about the deer, and have been known to chase them off while yelling, “Bad deer!” (It’s all in the tone. You can also chase of a black bear by yelling, “Bad bear!” Especially if you have a madly-barking dog at your side.)

magnolia peas

Magnolia–These have bright purple blossoms and purple pea pods! I’ve never seen purple peas before, but they taste great.
golden edible pod peas

Golden Edible Pod–I’ve grown these for the past few years. I love the lilac blossoms (I had to make sure that they were edible when I first saw the colour!) and the golden pods and peas. They’re great in salads.

Mrs Van’s–These have a very white blossom, and they seem to be a little later in producing. I haven’t found any to try yet.

Mrs Van's peas

RZE–I’ve no idea what that stands for. These seem to be the favourite for deer. It may be that they’re the easiest for the deer to get to.

Green Arrow –darker green and waxier looking, they are the tastiest of the bunch.

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Tue 22 May 2012

Why I love my immersion blender

Posted by admin under Home
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We’ve learned that we can get our kids to eat any vegetables without complaint. The secret? An immersion blender. Onions, broccoli, cabbage–As soon as you blend them up, they magically become delicious. And if you add some grated cheese, your kids may even ask for seconds.

Traditionally, soup recipes called for cooling, transferring to a blender, puréeing, and transferring the soup back to the pot to heat through. Yippee for immersion blenders! You can use them right in the pot (remove from heat first) and they wash up in seconds. They’re also compact and take up very little space in a drawer.

immersion blenders


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