a taste of summer – whole wheat waffles with maple peach compote

whole wheat waffles with peach maple compote 2

It’s hard to believe that just a mere six weeks ago, we had a relatively mild green Christmas. Here in Eastern Ontario – where we’ve been under siege since the beginning of January with snow, high winds, and frigid temperatures – that balmy green Christmas seems disproportionately long ago and far away. Read more


warm fig fruit salad in port wine

figs in port

This is such a crazy simple, quick, tasty, sophisticated, elegant dessert. I’d be incredibly happy if I was served this in a posh restaurant. And yet, I feel that most restaurants here are not quite there yet. Is it wrong that I often prefer my own cooking to eating out? If you love the kitchen and you love cooking and you take it seriously – eating out can be such a letdown. Expensive. Boring. Tasteless. Predictable.  Read more

on memorizing poetry and an old-fashioned self-saucing baked butterscotch pudding

self-saucing butterscotch pudding

Nobody memorizes poetry anymore.

Once upon a time it was de rigeur and scholars young and old memorized and recited astonishingly complicated, lengthy poems –The Highway Man, The Charge of the Light Brigade, Dylan Thomas’ Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Tennyson’s Ulysses, and Coleridge’s Kubla Khan… “In Xanadu did Kubla Khan, A stately pleasure-dome decree….” Read more

On hope, resolutions, and a caramelized onion and bacon tart

 “Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, ‘it will be happier’…”

~ Alfred Lord Tennyson


I like the idea of hope smiling from the threshold. Such a joyful notion. Even the concept of hope smiling, seems itself, designed to elevate our happiness. Hope is so fundamental, so paramount. Read more

easy, breezy, beautiful – four ingredient rum balls

rum balls

Once again, I’m so far behind in holiday preparations that I’ve practically given up before I’ve even managed to get started. There’s no tree in my new house, no decorations up, no baking done, very few gifts organized, and only one card mailed (to my sweet cousin in England). Despite the fact that I’m a Christmas minimalist – I need some serious help. Elves would be good.

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mastering the art of fig jam

fig jam

This week I made fig jam twice. The first time I made a tiny batch – a taste really – a single jar. Just for fun. I had some dried figs that I wanted to use and some gorgeous, incredibly sweet empire apples that tasted like candy apples. I was fancying fig jam on savoury sandwiches. Fig jam and ham. Bacon, lettuce, and fig jam. Peanut butter and fig jam. In the end, I had a friend coming for lunch and I made  parsnip soup and roast chicken, lettuce and fig jam sandwiches on seed bread. Read more