Posts Tagged: comfort food

Turkey and Wild Rice Soup [PALEO]

When I was a kid, there were few comforts come winter that soothed as much a hot bowl of homemade turkey soup did. With Thanksgiving and Christmas being so close together, bone broth gets whipped up on the regular around here and there’s always leftover turkey from hosting to tend to. This is one of my favourite dishes, hands down, based on nostalgia AND taste.

What’s even better is that I’ve made this low-carb, dairy and wheat free. Paleo if you please, but … more importantly, gloriously full of root veggies that are low on the glycemic index.

Turkey and Wild Rice Soup [PALEO]
Recipe type: Soup
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10-12
This makes a double batch which I like to freeze for a few weeks down the road after the first round of enjoyment! If you want to only make one pot, halve the recipe. Otherwise you'll need two big soup pots!
What You'll Need
  • 2 c. cooked wild rice (cooked separately)
  • 2 c. cubed and cooked sweet potato
  • 4 tbsp. grass-fed butter/ghee/coconut oil
  • 4 tbsp. avocado oil
  • 2 c. chopped onion
  • 2 c. chopped celery
  • 2 c. chopped carrot
  • 2 c. chopped turnip
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 8 c. turkey bone broth (or any other stock)
  • 2 bay leaf
  • 5 cups chopped leftover turkey
  • 2 tbsp chopped, fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp. kosher/pink himalayan sea salt
  • 1 tsp. teaspoon ground black pepper
How You Do
  1. Prep all your ingredients and begin cooking wild rice and roasting sweet potato in the oven. Toss all prepped and uncooked root veg together in a big bowl and set aside.
  2. In a large dutch oven, melt the butter and oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, carrot and celery and cook about 10 minutes until onions are soft and translucent. Deglaze with white wine. If making a double batch, take out half of the mirepoix and add to another big soup pot.
  3. Add half the turkey broth to one pot and the rest to the other with the bay leaves, thyme and turnip. Turn the heat up to medium-high and bring soup to a boil. Turn heat back down to medium and let simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Add turkey, cooked wild rice, cooked sweet potato, salt and pepper. Cook for 5 minutes more.
  5. Serve soup in large bowls, slurp and savour! (Freeze the other batch after cooled down!)


Dairy Free: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

title Just so we’re clear, this is a Paleo soup recipe, but obviously the sandwiches aren’t. If you’re new here, you might not know that I try and alternate between a plant-based and Paleo diet. The rest of my family don’t have the same health issues as I do so essentially they can indulge in what I do not! Meals like these make that kind of diverse food prep easy. It’s just grilled cheese yo. Perhaps a little bit fancy, but no big whoop. If you want to get into making big batches of bone broth to use in many an Autumn and Winter recipe, here’s my recipe!

Dairy Free: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-12
What You'll Need
  • Soup (double batch if you please)
  • 2 tbsp. ghee, coconut oil, or grassfed butter
  • 2 tbsp. REAL maple syrup (amber if you have it!)
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 8 c. bone broth (or 3½ quart sized tetra packs of veggie or meat based stock)
  • 10 cups 1-inch pieces peeled butternut squash (about 3½ lbs.)*
  • 2 tsp. minced fresh thyme
  • 2 tsp. minced fresh sage
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 (heaping) tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 c. cashew cream (soak ¼ cup of cashews in hot water for about 20 min., drain rinse and blend, adding in more water until cream-like consistency is obtained)
  • BONUS! Apple, Crispy Sage + Gruyere Sandwiches (for 4)
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
  • 8: ¼-inch-thick Italian loaf bread slices (or bread of choice)
  • 8 slices Gruyere cheese
  • 2 peeled and thinly sliced honey crisp apples
  • 5 or 6 baked sage leaves per sandwich
How You Do
  1. Soup:
  2. Bake cubed butternut squash tossed in 1 tbsp. of oil or butter and the maple, in a preheated oven of 350 F for about 25/35 minutes (depending on the heat of your oven), turning cubes midway.
  3. Melt the other tbsp. of oil or butter in large dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, ginger, garlic and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Add broth, all squash and herbs; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer a few minutes.
  4. Working in batches, puree soup in double batches. Return soup to same pot. Stir in the cashew cream and bring to simmer. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Sandwiches:
  6. Preheat panini press. Butter BOTH sides of each bread slice. Arrange bread, buttered side down across a large expanse of counter to create an assembly line. Top half of the bread slices with one slice of cheese, then apples, topping with another slice of cheese. Place other pieces of bread slices to complete the sandwich prep and grill until golden, about 2 minutes. Remove from press and let sit for 30-60 seconds before slicing.
  7. Ladle soup into bowls and serve those delectable sandwiches with those who can eat bread and cheese without a care in the world!

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Toddler (Everyone) Eats: Sugar Free, Spelt & Oat Banana Muffins


These. Right here. Took a while to make with a teething babe and all – but success! It happened. Toddler approved. As seen after the recipe.

Eat Some Healthy Soup Okay?

Because it’s that time of year. Fresh off the cookie, chocolate, decadent, savory / sweet train. Aka: the holidays. As you may know, I am a firm subscriber to the mantra of moderation. Which means that when it’s the holidays? One indulges in (not vacuums up – but it happens), the treats. The fat-laden savoury goodness that is the celebratory, feast and entertainment cuisine of the season. G’won, go for it. I did. That and fatty mc-fatterson Bailey’s too.

Which all went directly to my….

From The Vault: My Most Favourite Posts

I’ve noticed quite a few, “Top Posts of 2011″ and the like from writers in the blogging community.

I however have decided to choose from the much smaller collection from whence this blog began.

Why? Because I started out as an irregular, complete novice. Who still does not post everyday. However, come this year a whole lot of things are changing. The face of this site for one. Come February it’s going to be shiny and new, a hub for all that I do. More on that later.

This collection here? Is for me to share with those whom want to get to know me better, or those whom I really, really, like and want them to know me better. The awesome part about that is that it’s often a combo of the two.

It’s also a source of inspiration, for me – to come back to and meander over how I’ve evolved as a writer, found my voice and developed my mad blogging skillz. Because. Like I said. I plan on doing much more of this. In many ways. As an advocate, as a story-teller, as an ambassador and paid writer. But most importantly, for me and other women like me out there. Because the writing stuff? It heals. It empowers. It unites.

So. This curated list will be the first step into my second coming. A more frequent, constantly learning, embracing the everyday that is me. As a writer.  Gone the name acronyms will be, it’s about to get straight-up – the edgy that is me, REAL in here.

Without further ado…to serve as reminder to me. Kicks in the pants to me and FYI’s for you. So pull up a chair. Pour yourself a glass of vino. (I’m publishing this in the eveing people, as I pour myself a glass). Dig in.

Venison Loaf, With Cajun Frites & Beans

Things are pure madness in this household right now…I know, how many times can I say that? But for reals. The new babe is due in a couple of months (Aug. 1) we’re still doing work on the new house, my Etsy Shop/Off-line sales are KA-booming, the new gig as Social Media Consultant for Borealis Records is not the new one anymore. I’ve just taken a contract with a *yet to be officially announced until i commence on June 1st* on-line parenting/news wire. Oh boy. How do I do it? Well, the WSL is in daycare 3 days per week, I have a pretty awesome man who helps out around the house (sometimes with a gentle prod, nibble or goose), great friends who really support me and help keep me sane.

But seriously – I am also sourcing out. Hiring a weekly cleaner for one. I’m posting a Craiglist & Kijiji job ad looking to hire a part-time/seasonal seamstress. This means creating a Policy & Procedure Manual, measurement & stitch flow charts and finishing some of my templates/patterns and the training that will ensue, but yes. In the long-run will cause me less stress, manic: holy-shit-I have-all-these-Etsy-orders-and-crap-I-have to-do-research-for-that-article-and-finish-writing-it-oh-and-the-laundry-mountain-is-growing-past-my-comfort-level-what’s for-dinner-ew-that-ring-around-the-tub-has-to-go-I-have-to-plant-my-garden-like-yesterday-get-on-hootsuite-and-stay-there-try-to-keep-up-to-date-on-all-things-indie/folk-music-industry/deadlines-tackle-mountain-of-admin-oy.-the-inbox-overfloweth-respond-to-people-now-lest-you-value-your-life-and…and, yea.

Less of that manic state more of; ahhh, I have time to breathe now and then. Time to play with my boy; endlessly read him stories, make

Peter Cotton-Tail was in the Hizz-ouse.

There was feasting and ceremony and treasure hunts and skype visits and flying chickadees, but above all glee. Glee to be gathered, but missing our beautiful kwe’s.  They have been flying reindeer, making music and a documentary with Adjagas, (courtesy Big Soul Productions and a whack of other talented film peeps), some fabulous Sammi musicians of Norway. However, we were grateful for the miracles of the interwebs, in that Skype allowed them to be a part of our ceremony of re-birth and giving thanks.

I crafted and baked our gifts to wee ones, except for the chocolates for the hunt. Really now.

I cooked all day with some (missing a couple), of my coven and an exceptional young man home from B.C. Thank-you Nicholyn Farms phone in grocery order capabilities and local Barrie Farmers Market drop-off to pick up. That’s some 100 mile love right there.


apricot & dijon glazed ham, scalloped potatoes, mashed yams, lemon & thyme pickerel, honey & mint glazed carrots!

Flank Steak Pinwheels!

Flank steak pinwheels with sundried tomato and caper paste. DAMN SON! This was a meal served up to 2 incredibly deserving fitties and a neighbor who had just eaten dinner, but loves him his meat and these bad boys had his eyes lolling back into his head.

Black Cherry, Raw Chocolate Pie

About that raw chocolate pie I made last weekend. Passed down from a friend at a potluck for Summer Solstice years ago, herein lies my own twist on what was originally to-die-for. I often am experimenting with raw/vegan cuisine for various reasons. Shockingly tasty. One can indulge more or less healthily. No butter? No way! This is what my mantra most usually is. Although, the baking/non-baking of treats this way is very interesting to me as a foodie and slow thyroid avenger = slow metabolism. Especially when stumbling across such gluten-free, gourmet goddesses as  Elana Amsterdam of Elana’s Pantry. *Swoon* Of course, I still bake with all the unabashed; buttery, sugary, white flour tradition of our grannies. Because,

Crock Pot Bison Stew

This is a long-awaited request for the recipe from my loverlie Baker Babe and, well, it’s a general crowd pleaser. I usually I simmer this bad boy all day in the in the crock but in a pinch you can do it in a dutch oven on the stovetop too!

Enjoy this rich, stick to your ribs goodness, a most perfect type of cuisine to devour as this time of year as the leaves change colour and start to fall. I use as much organic and or local ingredients as always when cooking for my family. Do what you want in your kitchen, it’s your choice. Why I choose local, drug-free and/or organic whenever possible is for another post, another day.

Crock Pot Bison Stew
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8
What You'll Need
  • 2 pounds bison meat, cubed
  • ½ cup coconut or avocado oil
  • ½ cup grassfed butter
  • ¾ cup of arrowroot flour
  • 1 cup yellow onions, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup red onions, coarsely chopped
  • 1½ quarts water
  • 2 quarts of broth (I used veggie this time, as I did not have beef or chicken and it tasted just dandy. Homemade bone broth is always best!)
  • 2 to 3 bay leaves
  • 20 peppercorns
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic
  • ¾ teaspoons dried thyme leaves
  • 2 c. sliced carrots
  • 2 c. chopped celery
  • 2 c. halved baby white potatoes (keep it simple, keep it rustic)
  • 1 can of stewed tomatoes (diced or dice them yourself)
  • 2 c. chopped parsnip
  • 1½ pounds of shrooms (whatever you like, we favour portobello)
  • ½ - ¾ bag of frozen peas
  • vino or beer (1/2 can of Guinness = yum. Or left-over/turned wine. ¼ of a bottle.
  • (Use some for deglazing onions, which cooks off the alcohol; the rest for stock.)
  • Pink salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
How You Do
  1. Toss your lean, gorgeous chunkers in 2 tablespoons of the arrowroot flour, a drizzling of oil of choice and season with fresh ground pepper, salt and a wee bit of your thyme.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil of choice and 2 tablespoons of your butter reserve (see up there?)  in a Dutch oven or cast iron, (I use cast iron when using the crock and go dutch when going stove-top) pan over medium-high heat; brown the bison in oil, 2 to 3 minutes per side; remove bison and set aside.
  3. Saute onion till translucent, add your minced garlic and celery until soft, about 8 minutes in 2 tablespoons (1 of each) of the reserved oil and butter. Deglaze with vino! Stir in some of the broth to ensure you get all the flava flave when transferring to crock-pot.
  4. Add your beautiful bison to your crock pot or dutch oven and thank it; remaining spices; carrots and parsnips, stock, water, salt, pepper, cloves, canned tomatoes, and the rest of wine or that ½ a can of Guinness.
  5. Cover and turn down the heat to continue simmering for about an hour and a half if on stove-top. Add potatoes and peas, simmer for the last 45-ish minutes. Add roux (see below), simmer for 15-ish minutes. Serve it up with warm bread (we like ciabatta) and butter. Enjoy just as equally as you would have if it were born of crock descent. Don't discriminate. I'll be trying this action out to accompany my stew next time.
  6. Crock Pot Finish: You've deglazed your garlic, onions and celery with vino. Add your bison and bless it. Add a bit of broth to make sure you loosen up all of the yummy stuff and pour into your crock. Then do everything the same as in step 3 except your cooking time is longer. Obviously. Add your peas in the last 1 hour of cooking (the total being around 4-6 hours). Also add your roux in the last hour. Dish & bliss-out.


Mother of All Key Ingredients To Everything That is Grand and Great…Roux

I’m not talkin’ the flour and water baloney. I don’t know what I thought I was doing before I met my songbird and began cooking with her. But it’s in her great tutelage that I discovered equal parts flour and butter. Hello! What on earth was I doing before? If you are not making your roux this way…or prefer to go for less fat; nonsense! Enjoy the naughty indulgences food has to offer and get your arse to the gym/track/mat. There’s a time and a place for healthier cooking. There will be plenty of that here too. Moderation and indulgence. It’s the key to NEVER dieting and just fessing up to the simple fact that diets DON’T WORK and make one miserable and obsessed. It’s called exercise and moderation. We all know that deep down, don’t we? But then, someone is buying all the fat-free this and that…

ANYHEW. The roux. This is where the rest of your flour and butter come in. Grab a small sauce-pan and whisk together, (always, never stopping, don’t want clumps!) equal parts butter and flour. Then slowly add in some siphoned stock from your stew into the roux, constantly whisking till thick and smooth.



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