Vegetable Pie

I have been making this recipe so long that the recipe page is now sandwiched between two layers of packing tape so that it will not deteriorate any further! I got the recipe from a Tupperware dealer when Ultra21’s were all the rage! I loved those so much! I have long since lost the Ultra 21 and now use a 10″Springform pan instead. I like how easy it is to serve from a Springform pan and how easy a Springform is to clean!

My Very Favourite Vegetable Pie
My Very Favourite Vegetable Pie

1/2 cup Butter
1 1/4 cups Whole Wheat Flour
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plain Yogurt
3 cups finely chopped Broccoli (it is important that all your veggies [use a combo of Broccoli, Cauliflower, Peppers, Grated Carrot, Mushrooms] are finely chopped with the exception of zucchini)
1/3 cup diced Onion
1 cup Grated Cheddar, or a combination of cheeses: Monterey Jack, Mozza, Swiss, a sprinkle of Parmesan, loosely equal to a cup of grated cheese
2 medium Tomatoes, sliced
1/3 cup Mayo combined with 2 Tablespoons plain Yogurt
8 fresh Basil leaves or 1 1/2  teaspoons dried Basil

Preheat oven to 450F. (230C)
Prepare a 20″ Springform pan by spraying with Vegetable Oil Spray and lightly dusting with cornmeal. Or use the same size Quiche pan.
In mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt; cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Add yogurt and stir until the dough comes together.
Press the dough into prepared baking pan and, if using a springform pan, halfway up the sides.
Layer filling over crust in order given.
In a small bowl combine 1/3 cup Mayo and 2 Tbsp Plain Yogurt; spread this over the Vegetable Filling.
Top with grated cheese(s).
Arrange sliced tomatoes and fresh basil leaves on top. (If using dried basil, sprinkle on top of cheese(s)

Bake at 450F for 10 minutes; reduce heat to 350F (175C) and bake for another 30 minutes.
Remove from oven, let stand for 15 minutes, serve.

Serves 6 – 8




Lentil Loaf

The Lentil Loaf recipe that I found eons ago in a Canadian Living magazine is a versatile staple in my Vegetarian lifestyle: sometimes I bake it in a loaf pan, make a Cashew Nut Sauce to go with it; sometimes I scoop the mixture into a muffin tin for single serving portions, wrap ’em up, freeze ’em and use ’em when I need ’em; and finally, my fave, I use it as a base for Shepherd’s Pie.
Versatile Lentil Loaf
Versatile Lentil Loaf
4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Onion, chopped
2 cloves Garlic, crushed
1 1/2 cups Red Lentils, washed and well drained
3 cups Vegetable Broth
2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
2/3 cup Bread Crumbs
1 Tomato, chopped
2 + teaspoons Basil
1 teaspoon Salt
1 Egg, lightly beaten (optional)
1/4 cup Water
5 – 6 potatoes


Heat olive oil in a medium size saucepan with tight fitting lid.
Cook onion in heated oil for 2 – 3 minutes; add garlic and continue cooking for another few minutes.
Stir in lentils until coated.
Add vegetable stock and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer, covered for about 30 minutes until lentils are tender.
Remove from heat, stir well, mashing any whole lentils remaining.
Stir in lemon juice, bread crumbs, tomatoes, basil and salt, water and egg, if using.
If making Shepherd’s Pie, Cook potatoes now to make your favourite Mashed Potatoes
Preheat oven to 350F now.
Prepare an 8x4inch loaf pan; spray lightly with vegetable oil spray.
Prepare Muffin tin; spray 12 large muffin cups with vegetable oil spray
Prepare 4 Ramekins: spray lightly with vegetable oil spray
Scoop Lentil Mixture into your baking dish(es)
If making Shepherd’s Pie, top Lentil Mixture with a layer of Frozen Peas or Frozen Mixed Vegetables and top with Mashed Potatoes.
Bake in 350F:
Loaf  –  1 1/2 hours, until knife inserted comes out clean
Muffin Tin  –  40 – 45 minutes, until pick inserted comes out clean
Shepherd’s Pie  –  35 – 45 minutes, until Lentil layer is Bubbly and Potato topping is golden.
For an unconventional Shepherd’s Pie, coz my Aussie Husband dislikes Mashed Potatoes! (shakes head, who doesn’t like mashed potatoes??)
I parboiled some baby potatoes, drained, sliced and threw them onto a layer of Frozen Peas on top of the Lentil Mixture. Before baking for 30 minutes, I lightly brushed the potatoes with some melted butter and sprinkled the whole thing with fresh ground Pepper and a bit of dried basil.

Unconventional Shepherds Pie
Unconventional Shepherds Pie



Carrot Cake Pancakes

I had some carrots that were no longer eye appealing and needed to be used up. I absolutely love to bake but, oh my, there is only so much baking one can consume! Summer has been a busy time for everyone so we haven’t had our regular Sunday Dinners where I can rely on the help of extended family members to empty the Cookie Jar or Cake Platter. Still, here I have all these grated carrots begging to be made into something, not just relegated to the deep, dark realms of the freezer which is now chock-a-block full of summer berries.

Well, you may or may not know that I discovered Cinnamon Roll Pancakes which are definitely less sinful than Cinnamon Rolls sooooo… I got to thinking you have to be able to make Carrot Cake Pancakes! Woot! All that yummy goodness with a fraction of the calories! I like to make extra Pancakes when I have the griddle heated and freeze the leftovers so we have Toaster Pancakes on busy work day mornings.

Carrot Cake Pancakes with Cream Cheese Drizzle
Carrot Cake Pancakes with Cream Cheese Drizzle

1 cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 cup Flour
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground Nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground Ginger
OR 2 teaspoons Epicure Apple Pie Spice
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup chopped Walnuts
1/2 cup Raisins
2 Eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup Butter, melted
1 teaspoon Vanilla
2 cups Buttermilk (If you don’t have Buttermilk – 2Tbsp Lemon Juice with enough regular milk to  measure 2 cups, let stand for 10 minutes)
4 cups grated Carrots
Cream Cheese Drizzle
4 ounces Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup Icing Sugar
Milk – to desired consistency

If you don’t have buttermilk, set the milk to souring before you begin.
Melt the butter and let it cool while you proceed with getting your dry ingredients combined.

In small mixing bowl beat cream cheese until smooth.
Add icing sugar and vanilla, beating until no lumps remain.
Add a little milk (1 – 2 Tablespoons) if you want a thinner drizzle.
Set aside.

Preheat Griddle to 350F.
In mixing bowl combine flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices and brown sugar.
Stir in chopped nuts and raisins.
In a small bowl, combine buttermilk, vanilla, eggs, melted butter and grated carrots.
Pour liquid ingredients, all at once, into dry ingredients.
Stir just until all the flour is incorporated, do not overmix.
Lightly spray griddle with non stick spray.
Ladle about 1/4 – 1/3 cup for each pancake, spreading the batter slightly ; cook for 3 – 4 minutes, until bubbles start to pop and edges are dry.
Flip over and continue cooking for another 3 – 4 minutes.
Transfer to serving platter.
Repeat with remaining batter.
Serve warm with Cream Cheese Drizzle.
Freeze any leftovers and simply pop into the toaster to reheat when needed.

Makes 18 Pancakes

FYI – This is a ummm, goopy batter; don’t try to hurry these up by cranking up the heat coz you will end up with burnt outsides and raw insides…YUCK! Keep it at 350F and practice patience…or you know, clean all the surfaces in the kitchen if you are like me and can’t be trusted to be patient!

Chicken Bombs

Alright, so normally I look at a recipe, think about the flavours, presentation, etc and then change it up to suit our needs. I must confess, having been, and continuing to be a Vegetarian for over 30 years, I feel like a fish out of water when it comes to cooking Meat products which is why I followed this recipe for Chicken Bombs, pretty much to the T.

Chicken Bombs with an Explosion of Flavour in every bite!
Chicken Bombs with an Explosion of Flavour in every bite!

5 boneless, skinless Chicken Breasts
– or Fast Fry Chicken Breasts
2 Jalapenos, cut into 10 strips
20 slices Bacon
4 oz Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup Colby or Jack Cheese, shredded
Salt and Pepper, to taste
1 cup BBQ sauce

Preheat Grill to 350F.
Combine cream cheese and shredded cheese together and set aside.
Slice Chicken Breasts in half.
(I got a package of the Fast Fry Chicken Breasts which were pretty thinly sliced so I got to omit the first step.)
Place between wax paper and pound until about 1/4″ thick.
Season with Salt and Pepper.
Spread about 1 Tbspn of cream cheese mixture onto a strip of jalapeño  and place on chicken breast; roll up to wrap completely – repeat with each chicken breast.
Wrap each chicken breast with two strips of bacon each, starting at one end of chicken breast and working your way along to cover the entire thing with bacon.
Cook on preheated 350F Grill over indirect heat, turning over every 5 minutes, brushing with BBQ sauce each time, for about 30 minutes or until chicken is done – when pierced with a fork the juices run clear.
You can also bake these in the oven:
Bake in 375F oven for 30 minutes or until chicken is done.
Turn midway through cooking time, baste with BBQ sauce.
At the end of the cooking time, turn oven to Broil and Broil for about 3 minutes.

Serves 5

Slow Cooker Apple Bread Pudding

When Ryan goes to the shops to get a few things to make lunches with, he invariably comes home with way to much bread! He bought two packages of lovely panini rolls because they were on sale…well, we can only eat so much fresh bread between the three of us. The lovely panini rolls were growing older by the day; on Day Three I simply had to rescue the remaining 6 rolls. And not just to the freezer where they would be forgotten and probably thrown out 4 months down the road!
I also had some apples that were becoming less and less eye appealing by the day; the answer to my problems, Apple Bread Pudding but with summer temperatures preventing me from wanting to turn the oven on…haul out the slow cooker. I found this recipe for Slow Cooker Apple Bread pudding with many thanks to Google. However, I didn’t want choc chips in my bread pudding and I skipped the Yogurt Sauce found in the original recipe.

Apple Bread Pudding
Apple Bread Pudding

6 cups Crusty Bread, torn into 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup Steamed Apples (peel, core and thinly slice apples; microwave in covered microwave-safe       dish for 1Min30Sec.)
1/2 cup Sultanas
1/2 cup Pecans, chopped
4 large Eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup Milk
1 can Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 1/2 teaspoons ground Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground Ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground Nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground Cloves

Coat slow cooker insert with butter or margarine.
Add 1/2 the cubed bread; spread with half of:  the steamed apples, sultanas, chopped pecans
Add remaining bread, top with remaining steamed apples, sultanas and chopped pecans.
In a medium bowl combine eggs, milk, condensed milk, and spices; pour over bread, fruit and nuts, pressing down with a spoon  to completely moisten all the bread.
Cover and cook on LOW setting for 3 – 4 hours, or until knife inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Start checking the bread pudding after three hours and check every 15 minutes afterwards until cooked through.
Serve with fresh whipped cream or ice cream.

Serves 8

Comforting Apple Bread Pudding
Comforting Apple Bread Pudding

FYI – This is sort of like having French Toast for breakfast right? I put the leftovers in the freezer and pulled out a serving out each day for a week for my instant breakfast!