Having several bags of last summer’s raspberries still waiting with baited breath in my freezer, I need to find ways to let them express themselves. Once again, Bon Appetit came to the rescue with a great cake recipe. The combination of ricotta and raspberries makes for a cake that tastes like it just came from a big old oven in a well used and loved kitchen. Ready for a family full of hungry mouths, or a group of adults discussing world peace over after-dinner coffees. You choose. Continue reading
Our island has a one-room schoolhouse, with children from Kindergarten to Grade 7. Usually there’s about 16 children attending, and all ages spend the day together. Having had two daughters go through this school, it’s easy to see why small classrooms, where children really know each other, are such a benefit.
Each winter we would host a large party for the school families. We quickly learned that appetizer parties were the way to go. There was always enough that the bigger eaters would be satisfied, while the smaller eaters could pick and choose a few things to make them happy. I have a huge appetizer file to pick from, but this one always seems to make it to the table.
This dip is equally great with raw veggies, crostini or crackers. It’s healthy, and if it’s all you eat, that’s okay. Use it when you’re asked to bring an appetizer – no heating required, and it’s up to you what to serve it with. Continue reading
Ten years or so ago, I came up with the idea of an art auction to raise money for our community hall. Everyone could donate art that they no longer wanted on their own walls, or something that they had created themselves. We had some wild pieces, as well as some that were really beautifully done. We held another art auction in the summer of 2011, as well as one last summer, which did even better. We wondered if it was something that we could do year after year. Apparently there’s no shortage of art that people are willing to donate, and to buy!
The original event was held in April and kicked off with a Lasagne dinner & the Art Auction, followed the next day with a Community Breakfast and Walkathon around the island. We had a couple of large whalers to transfer us from one point to the next, as we don’t have a circuitous road, more like a wishbone.
Here’s the lasagne I came up with for that event. We did half of them vegetarian, and half with beef. My favourite was and still is the vegetarian version. This recipe makes a large roasting pan full, enough for 18 good-sized servings. Continue reading
A friend and I used to provide picnics in our valley. We mowed a small area, set up table and chairs, and laid the table with linens, tableware and flowers. Guests were asked if they wanted cows present or not. Almost all asked for them to be around. We catered for romantic couples, to large family groups looking for an afternoon away from it all to reconnect. Working away up at the house, we could hear them through the open windows, laughing and talking. Often they would take a meander through the meadows after their meal, stretching the event out as long as possible.
We were always on the lookout for side dishes that collectively would present a colourful, unique yet cohesive meal. Here’s a wonderful plated salad from those beautiful summer picnics. Continue reading