Tag Archives: cheese

Ringing in 2014 in the Deep Freeze: What to Eat

2 Jan

The high in Ottawa, Canada today was – 24C with a wind chill factor that made it feel like – 34C. We were actually colder than Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, but not colder than other parts of our incredible country. This is Day 3 of a 5-day stretch of extremely cold weather.

"Baby, it's cold outside."

“Baby, it’s cold outside.”

For those who measure temperature on the Farenheit scale that is – 11F, windchill of – 29F. The health department issued warnings that exposed skin can freeze in 10 minutes.

Wise humans (and one canine I know), stayed indoors with only the briefest sorties for essential business. Hot chocolate and good novels were our activities of choice. Uber-Canuks suited up in layers or pulled on their bison mitts and Balaklava and went out-of-doors. Some skaters even braved the Rideau Canal Skateway.

Experiencing the lung-rattling cold has helped me to understand how the Inuit in the Arctic region of Canada can eat such fatty foods as seal. I am absolutely craving high-fat meals . . . particularly beef and cheese. A number of people I know prepared macaroni & cheese today.

To help you cope with winter’s blistering cold, I hope to post a few hearty dishes I made in December. Meals with beef and starches and meal-worthy soups.

Beef & Mushroom Pie

Beef & Mushroom Pie

Tonight I cooked the first meal for myself in over ten days. I have feasted at family holiday tables, consumed copious left-overs, eaten a catered gourmet dinner for New Year’s Eve and been a guest at friends’ tables. Here are the recipes I plan to make for the coming week:

Tomato and Seafood Penne (Canadian Living, Dec. 2013, pg 174)

Hearty Meatball and Fennel Soup (CL, Nov. 2013, pg 146)

Hearty Meatball and Fennel Soup

Hearty Meatball and Fennel Soup

The Ultimate Lasagna (Canadian Living, September 2013, pg. 135)

. . . and if I tire of the “care packages” of Christmas baking lurking in my freezer, I may decide to make Rustic Apple Cake (CL, Sept 13, pg 187).


Vegetarian Potluck — A Conundrum

4 Feb

Friends have hosted an annual Skating and Vegetarian Potluck party for 19 years. They serve appetizers mid-afternoon, folks head off to Ottawa’s world-famous Rideau Canal Skateway and then back to their home as dusk approaches for a vegetarian potluck supper and a few warming beverages from their wine cellar. It’s an all-ages, casual, relaxed and delicious mid-winter celebration. My 2013 contribution was Winter Vegetable Croustade Au Gratin.

Vegetarian Potluck Conundrum

Vegetarian Potluck Conundrum

It’s been a gentle challenge for we guests to consider and enjoy vegetarian fare in all its glory. I start saving (and now bookmarking) recipes the day after each party. For avid followers of Savvy Single Suppers, you realize I cook vegetarian mains at least once a week. Cooking vegetarian is not a big deal for me.

Cooking vegetarian for a potluck is an entirely different matter. The dish should be portable, easily consumed from one’s laps or standing at the kitchen island (while holding a wine glass). It’s also a bonus for the hostess if the dish re-heats without a lot of time in her already over-flowing oven. Continue reading

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