Friday, October 29, 2010

Leftover Halloween Candy chocolate sauce

I just read a blog post encouraging parents to allow their children an extremely limited amount of Halloween candy, and then to THROW OUT the rest of the candy. This bugs me. I think it is a waste to have kids collect candy only to throw it out. But on the other side, I do see that it could be quite unhealthful to allow kids to eat a pound of chocolate on Halloween. But you don't need to throw out the excess candy, make it into something else -- one idea? chocolate sauce!


  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 5 ounces (about 150 grams, or 13 mini chocolate bars) leftover chocolate candy, chopped up (can use: Reese's cups, M+Ms, any kind of chocolate bars, perhaps even tootsie rolls)


In a heavy saucepan, bring whipping cream to a boil. Remove from heat, then add the chocolate, stirring until smooth. That's it! You can drizzle this on ice cream or all sorts of desserts, add liquor such as Amaretto to taste, use it in a Fondue (as long as the chunks are pretty small). If you are chocolated out because it is Halloween, this sauce freezes well and can be reheated slowly on the stove when you are in need of some chocolate sauce.

A few other ideas to use up leftover Halloween Candy:

Halloween Candy Cookies

Leftover Halloween Candy Pie

Deep Fried Halloween Candy

A bunch of other ideas -- including trail mix!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Veggie Quinoa Loaf -- Thanksgiving style

I had made this recipe for a vegetarian loaf from Whole Foods once before, in muffin tins. It came out pretty well but there were a few more tweaks I wanted to try. Today I wanted to bring a vegetarian dish to Canadian Thanksgiving at a friends house, and this was my chance to make another version of the loaf!

I was a bit worried the loaf would be bland, so I made the mushroom gravy in the next post to go on it. It was a great success (if I do say so myself)! Everyone really liked it, even the meat eaters. One meat eater even took seconds of the loaf, with a full turkey dinner to choose from.

Here is the version of the recipe I made today:


1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing
8 ounces crimini mushrooms, sliced
1 cup (about 1 onion) chopped red onion
1 stalk celery, minced
1 large or 2 small cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon tumeric powder (optional)
1 teaspoon sambar powder (or any masala or curry powder you have on hand) (optional)
1/2 jalapeno pepper, minced
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
3/4 cup rolled oats
2 cups cooked quinoa
1 cup frozen green peas
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
10 sundried tomatoes packed in oil, drained and chopped finely
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese (optional)


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8-inch loaf pan with oil; set aside. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Set aside in large mixing bowl.
2. Heat more oil in pan, saute onion, celery, garlic, jalapeno (with tumeric and curry/masala spice if desired) until soft, put in bowl with mushrooms.
3. Meanwhile, put beans, oats and 1/2 cup water into a food processor and pulse until almost smooth. Add this bean mixture to the large bowl, along with quinoa, peas, parsley, tomatoes, onion, cheese, and salt and pepper to taste.
4. Transfer mixture to prepared loaf pan, gently pressing down and mounding it in the middle. Bake until firm and golden brown, 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Set aside to let rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Can be served with vegetarian mushroom gravy, below.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

good vegetarian mushroom gravy


-- Added in about 3 T. minced shallots
-- used 1.5 cups veggie broth instead of 3 cups chicken broth
-- needed more flour to thicken
-- added in a bit of cream at the end, and fresh parsley/thyme minced

Very good! Next time deglaze the pan with marsala, let cook down a bit before adding broth

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Rutabaga Carrot Soup

My mom used to mash rutabaga and carrot together as a side dish, I really liked it when I was a kid. I wanted those same flavors, but in a soup. I found this recipe online, and tweaked it a bit to come up with something more along the lines of what I was looking for. Rutabaga can turn some people off, in this soup it's pepperiness is mellowed out by the sweetness of carrot and creaminess of potato.


-- 1 tablespoon olive oil
-- 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced leek (white and pale green parts only) -- be sure to wash the leek well before and after chopping because there is always dirt hidden in there.
-- 1/2 cup thinly sliced celery
-- 1 garlic clove, minced
-- 4 cups 1/2-inch pieces peeled rutabagas
-- 2 cups 1/2-inch pieces potatoes
-- 2 cups sliced carrots
-- 8 cups veggie broth
-- salt and pepper, to taste


Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-low heat. Add leek, celery and garlic and sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add rutabagas, potatoes, carrots, and broth. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 45 minutes.
Puree about half the soup, either in a food processor or with a stick blender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Ladle soup into bowls and serve.