Here it is again, the start of another month. That means it is also the end of another SOS Kitchen Challenge (and I’m not foolin’!).
In March, Kim and I featured none other than the delicious and nutritious adzuki bean. Our readers were inspired by both the sweet and savory possibilities, and delivered a multitude of delicious-looking recipes.
From truffles to tarts, soup to salad, and even vegetarian “bacon”, we had it all. And, oddly enough, Kim and I were on the same wavelength and created very similar bean dips, completely separate from each other. I guess great minds do think alike!
Be sure to check out all the great recipes in the Linky below, and prepare to get your bean on!
Anxious for the next SOS Kitchen Challenge? We are too! I’m really pleased with the next ingredient selected for the April SOS Kitchen Challenge. This month’s ingredient is fresh, seasonal, and perfectly suited for a wide variety of savory dishes. And if you can figure out how to use it in a sweet way, you deserve a medal of honor.
So: I’m going to make an effort to try to attempt to give it my best shot and strive to endeavor to maybe have a crack at liking winter a little more. I mean, I can’t complain about it right through until April, can I? (okay, don’t answer that). Well, with inspiration from Alicia’s “Happy Thoughts” at the conclusion of each of her blog posts, I decided earlier today to start the -23C (-10 F) day with three positives of my own. Three reasons to smile first thing in the moring? Well, that’s gotta melt away all that snow and ice anti-winter sentiment, right? And each one of these items, I daresay, is worth a cheer.
#1: Raw Raw for Our Winner!
I was delighted with the positive response to my most recent giveaway and am so glad that you all were as impressed with the company as I was. And as I mentioned in the review, the oils are great for use in raw dishes. Raw raw!
[Meghan (on the right) and me. Apologies for the blurry pic. . . darned pocket camera!]
It was great to meet Meghan and observe her über-enthusiastic and friendly demeanor in person. With my recent resolve to continue eating healthfully and introduce in a more “clean” diet over the next few months, I had already decided to consume more raw foods. And, as Meghan commented in her class, raw dishes are the perfect antidote to our natural inclinations during the chilly season, when we are more likely to overdo cooked and hot foods. I knew I’d find some great inspiration for new raw recipes at the class–and I did! (Oh, and we got to spend 2-1/2 hours with like-minded people in Meghan’s cool loft, too).
Here’s the raw “cous cous” salad, one of the many dishes that we scarfed downgobbled upinhaled enjoyed while there:
Raw Raw for Meghan’s cooking classes!
#3: Raw Raw for–Fennel!
[Raw fennel slaw with carrot, beets, ginger and black sesame seeds.]
It’s probably an understatement to say that my sisters and I “don’t like” fennel.
The CFO, for instance, was once out to dinner with some friends when she ordered a chicken and pasta dish. Here’s how the situation played out:
CFO: I’d like to order this chicken and asparagus dish, but I need to be sure it doesn’t contain fennel.
SERVER: No, Miss, absolutely not. No fennel.
CFO: Okay, then, I’ll have this.
The dish arrives. The CFO takes one bite and her face screws up like a beach ball being turned inside-out.
CFO: Ugh! Ptew! Bleh! This dish has fennel in it!!
FRIEND #1: No, it doesn’t. I’m eating the same thing. There’s no fennel in it.
CFO: I’m telling you, there is fennel in this dish.
FRIEND #2: Here, let me taste it. (slurp, chomp). Nope, no fennel.
CFO: It has fennel!
FRIEND #3: Let me try. (chew, chew, swallow). There’s no fennel in that, CFO! You must be imagining.
The others continue to eat their respective dinners, but the CFO won’t touch her pasta. The server walks by.
CFO: Excuse me, server, but could you tell me if there’s any fennel in this dish?
SERVER: No, that dish is made with asparagus and peas. No fennel.
CFO: Are you absolutely,one hundred percent sure? No fennel? No fennel AT ALL?
SERVER [looking a little less confident now]: Well, let me go ask the chef. [he trots off].
The server returns.
SERVER: I asked the sous-chef and he said there’s no fennel added to this dish. We use a pre-mixed spice mix, and we are sure there’s no fennel in that. Besides, we only inclue about 1/4 teaspoon of the spice mix in the entire pasta sauce, which serves 50 people. . . .
CFO: Would you mind checking if there’s fennel in the spice mix, please?
SERVER [rolls his eyes a little too obviously]: Well, Miss, that would require pulling down the original box of spice mix, which is in our pantry behind five other boxes of rice and other supplies. . .
CFO stares at him without saying anything.
SERVER: Fine. I will be right back. [trots off]
The server returns.
SERVER: Well, Miss, I am sorry to tell you that yes, there is fennel in that spice mix.
Vindication! Luckily, the CFO isn’t allergic to fennel (or the conversation would have ended much earlier–like, when she keeled over); she just hates it. Needless to say, she returned the pasta. With a nose like that, I don’t know why she never went into the perfume business.
While I might not be as sensitive to its presence in spices, I am also not exactly a fan of the licorice flavor of cooked or dried fennel (which is odd, since I used to love black licorice–though in that case, I suspect, it had more to do with the exhorbitant amounts of sugar in the candy). When I read about Alysa’s “Hated Veggie Challenge,” I knew immediately that for me, the reviled veg in question would have to be the dreaded fennel bulb.
I’ve often been told that the raw form offers up a milder, sweeter flavor and a lovely crunch that can convert even the staunchest fennel-phobe. And so, I went and bought myself some fennel and concocted a slaw.
I whipped up a creamy dressing that I thought would work with an anise-like flavor. I paired it with grated beet and carrot for some sweetness and familiarity. I sprinkled it with black sesame seeds for visual appeal. And then–I took a tentative forkful.
And I loved it! Whoo hoo! Yay! Yippee! The fennel famine has finally ended!
Perhaps my taste buds have matured since my 30s; perhaps they’ve merely dulled. Perhaps the beets along with the Asian-inspired creamy dressing concealed the major licorice flavor and I am just not recognizing it. For whatever reason, I found the slaw to be a very tasty, satisfying side dish that I would definitely make again. Creamy, sweet and a bit salty from the miso, the ingredients here seemed to work harmoniously for a winning collaboration of tastes and textures. Raw Raw for raw fennel!
Raw Asian Slaw with Fennel, Beet and Carrot (ACD Phase II and beyond)
This is a really quick and easy side dish or first course to pair with a warm winter meal. Or have it on its own with a hearty slice of bread slathered with almond butter for a light lunch.
For the Salad:
1 small fennel bulb, trimmed and shredded (or sliced into thin shreds)
1 large carrot, peeled and grated
1 medium beet, peeled and grated
about 1 inch (2.5 cm) piece of ginger, peeled and sliced into very thin matchsticks
For the Dressing:
1 Tbsp (15 ml) light miso
1 Tbsp (15 ml) tahini (sesame paste)
1 Tbsp (15 ml) toasted sesame oil
juice of 1/2 lemon (about 2 Tbsp/30 ml)
10-15 drops plain stevia liquid, to your taste
salt and pepper to taste
1-2 Tbsp (15-30 ml) water, as needed
1 heaping Tbsp (20 ml) black or white sesame seeds (raw or toasted)
In a medium bowl, toss together the fennel, carrot, beet and ginger. In a small bowl, whisk together the miso, tahini, sesame oil, lemon juice, stevia and salt and pepper until very smooth. Slowly whisk in the water until desired thickness is reached (it should be thick and creamy, but just thin enough to pour).
Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss to coat, then sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve. Makes 4 servings. Will keep up to 2 days, covered, in the refrigerator.
Variation: We liked this dressing so much that I used it again the next night in a Broccoli Slaw: I substituted a head of broccoli (including stems), chopped, in place of the original veggies and added about 1/3 cup (80 ml) lightly toated almonds. Fabulous!
[Thanks to everyone who left such sweet comments and encouragement for the hellish week of marking! (And I know I still owe some of you emails. . . coming soon!) Some of you who are students noted that you'd be doing as much work on the other side of the red pen. Whether students, parents, teachers or the lucky few whose only connection to academia is reading about it in the newspapers--hope you all survived the past crunch week or so of midterms, study week, or finals. Now get ready, 'cause there's a lengthy return post ahead--on to the food!]
[Base of rice and buckwheat; sautéed rapini and chard with onions and garlic; tahini-miso sauce; sprinkled with hemp seeds.]
I’m sure we’ve all met her (or perhaps we are her?): that woman who’s incredibly competent at dispensing affection, comfort, nurturing or support–yet seems to ignore her own emotional needs and physical well-being.
Well, I admit it, I’m as guilty as the next gal. Ten days away from the DDD home base had me reflecting often on this whole notion of self-love. Actually, that was only one among a plethora of topics on which I mused during the hiatus, which included (but was not limited to) the following:
how much I miss blogging when I’m away. I was struck by a true sense of void during this time, and it astounded me. Honestly, who are “they” who post studies about the Internet and prophecies of doom regarding how it diminishes social skills or limits interactions with other people? Seriously. In some cases, I’m in contact with blog buddies more often than my “in-person” friends (some of whom live only five minutes away). Don’t let anyone tell you that the society of bloggers isn’t a bona fide community of lively, vibrant, and very much interactive people–all of you!
how to create a tasty, grain-free breakfast pancake. I wanted something that didn’t require refined, or even whole-grain, flour–and I found it! (more on that anon).
how this &%$!!?* winter refuses to retreat, even though it’s March already and why are you still hanging around, Mr. Jack Frost, can’t you tell you’re not welcome anymore and nobody wants you here, so just go away and don’t come back, ya big bully!
how, with the economy as bad as it is, I’m hoping the HH and I might still save for our dream home (okay, I’d be willing to cut some of the frills and just be happy with a daydream home). And while we’re both incredibly lucky to still be gainfully employed, on the topic of saving money and stretching a dollar, I’ve been mightily inspired by the frugal and fantastic Melody over at MeloMeals.
why, once again, I have been willing to risk my health, well-being and future for the evil (and truly, ephemeral) charms of that sepia seductress, chocolate.
[Oat groats and amaranth base; grilled eggplant and grilled marinated tofu; broccoli, avocado and green onion; orange-fig sauce.]
Yes, folks, it’s time to focus on the “diet” portion of this blog yet again.
When I first began to ponder how I’d spend my break from the college, I considered traveling to a new locale, attending a retreat, picking up old hobbies like sewing or knitting–but it never occurred to me I’d get sick instead. Then, at my annual checkup last week, I discovered that my old candida afflction has reared its yeasty head yet again, and this time, with a potency that could rival the combined superpowers of the X-Men.
I’ve decided that in order to rid myself of this recurring problem once and for all, I’ll need to return to the anti-candida diet (ACD). I’ll be facing a highly restrictive diet and a few detoxes or cleanses along the way (no wonder I’ve been avoiding it). But I’ve had it with the persistent cycle of diet, dessert and destruction (you thought I was going to say “dogs,” didn’t you? heh heh!). To paraphrase that seminal queen of weight loss, Susan Powter, “the insanity must stop!” (And what the heck ever happened to her, anyway?).
I’m going on an anti-candida diet so I can be healthy. So I can move more easily, and feel comfortable in my own body. So I can express a little more self-love and self-care through my diet and lifestyle. (Anyone familiar with Sally’s fabulous blog already knows what I mean by this: treating my body, mind and spirit with the kindness, reverence, and care it deserves.) So I can enjoy a social life without being fixated on food. Oh, and so I can lose 40 pounds by my highschool reunion this May. **
My last “true” candida cleanse occurred nine years ago, and in the interim, my eating habits have slowly reverted to those that got me in trouble in the first place (chocolate too often; sweets too often; wine too often). After reading the diet on this site (which is slightly less ascetic than the regimen I followed before), I think it’s doable (the only recommendation with which I disagree is to use aspartame or aseulfame, so I’ll just omit those).
To those of you who’ve been reading for a while, I understand if you’re skeptical, and I apologize. After all, I’ve tried more than a few times to cut chocolate and sugar from my life. Well, I’ve learned it’s never a great idea to publicly declare such a complete lifestyle overhaul on the blog, because later on, if you don’t meet your lofty goal, your initial vow is indelibly there for all the internet to see. With that in mind, I’ll restrict my candida commentary to the Progress Tracker page (may as well give it a new use, as I long ago stopped recording my weight over there).
And since I’ve already done a bit of baking over the past couple of weeks, I can intersperse the spartan dishes with more interesting fare. If I play my screens right, you folks will barely notice a difference.
[Rice and brown lentil base; spinach leaves and steamed sweet potato wedges with chopped green onions; topped with almond-curry sauce.]
The first step is to prepare the system with a week or two of clean, whole-foods eating that doesn’t worry about yeast or fermentation (yeast and fermented foods will be cleared out next). Rice or noodle bowls are a great place to start.
[Barley and amaranth base; grilled red pepper strips and onions; steamed broccoli; sprinkling of cashews and sunflower seeds; topped with tahini-miso sauce.]
Meals-in-a-bowl like these have become very popular at health-food restaurants and stores around North America. There’s a local haunt that serves an amazing bowl called, appropriately, “The Mish-Mash Bowl.” Every meal contains either brown rice or quinoa, topped with your choice of four toppings from three categories (protein, veggies, or good fats), then drizzled with your choice of one or two dressings.
My own variation on the Mish Mash is a quartet of at least one healthy grain plus a protein, healthy fat, and complex carbohydrate (ie, veggies). I was amazed at how satisfying–and how filling–a clean, healthy bowl can be. The marriage of fresh, colorful veggies with chewy grains and the crunch of nuts or seeds is entirely enchanting (almost as enchanting as that vixen, chocolate–though in a different way, of course).
In putting these together, what I discovered rather quickly is that “the sauce makes the bowl.” A grain bowl sans effective topping is sort of like a perfect outfit without the right shoes or accessories–it may be good quality, it may be tailored , it may even sport a designer label, but without the proper accoutrements, it’s just a length of beige, beige, beige.
With a winning sauce, however, these bowls are stellar; they’re delectable; they evoke impatient yearning; they’re Zagat-worthy. And, much like those lines of toddlers’ clothing that allow the kids to dress themselves by choosing one top and one pre-coordinated bottom, they’re fun to mix and match, just to see what comes up.
The combinations here are simply starting points to get you going; play around with different grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, veggies, and sauces. Use these sauces with any combination you please, or go with my mixes–either way, you’ll be treating yourself with love.
**I asked this question entirely tongue in cheek–so please, no need to send me emails detailing how unhealthy a 40-pound weight loss in 8 weeks would be! I have no intention of actually losing that much. Besides, at the rate I’ve been going this past year, a FOUR pound loss by May would be nothing short of miraculous.
Light and tangy, this sauce would also be perfect with raw veggies or in a sandwich.
2 tsp (10 ml) freshly grated ginger root
1 Tbsp (15 ml) tamari or soy sauce
2 tsp (10 ml) pure maple syrup
2 Tbsp (30 ml) fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp (30 ml) tahini (sesame paste)
1 Tbsp 915 ml) light miso
2 Tbsp (30 ml) water
Combine all ingredients in a blender and whir until smooth. Makes enough for 3-4 bowls.
Almond and Curry Sauce
Slightly sweet, slightly spicy, this substantial sauce goes well with cooked root vegetables and adds a protein punch to your bowl. I used a food processor for this batch, which was chunky; I think I’d use a blender next time (or even use almond butter instead of fresh almonds).
6-10 dried dates, roughly chopped, to taste
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp (90 ml) boiling water
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp (90 ml) natural almonds, with skin
1 tsp (5 ml) freshly grated ginger root
1/2 tsp (5 ml) mild curry powder
1 Tbsp (15 ml) tamari or soy sauce
1 small clove garlic, minced
pinch chili flakes
Place dates in a blender and cover with boiling water. Allow to sit for 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and blend until you have a smooth sauce. Makes enough for 3-4 bowls.
Orange Fig Sauce
Delicious over bowls when a higher protein content is provided by the ingredients in the bowl. This also works beautifully on a tofu omelet.
1/2 cup (120 ml) freshly squeezed orange juice
one 2″ (5 cm) piece of ginger, peeled and minced
1 tsp (5 ml) light miso
2 tsp (10 ml) tamari or soy sauce
1 tsp (5 ml) agave nectar
2 large dried figs, stems removed, chopped
Whir all ingredients in a blender until perfectly smooth. Drizzle over your bowl as desired. Makes enough for 3-4 bowls.
[Okay, so the post title is a bit obscure (I was alluding to Four Weddings and a Funeral)--but with the Oscars coming up in a couple of days, and with my having seen, hmmn, let's see--a total of "zero" of the movies, I wanted to make reference to that grand little Golden Guy in some way or other in this post. ]
Shindig One: The most recent celebration we enjoyed here in the DDD household was an intimate birthday dinner for my friend Eternal Optimist (consisting of just the EO, the HH, and me).We three enjoyed a spectacular, yet simple meal of Potato-Miso Soup (Alisa’s uniquely delicious recipe: satiny smooth, rich and slightly yeasty from the hint of miso–in fact, this was the second time I’ve made this in a week!); trusty Tagine of Quinoa with Chickpeas, Olives and Prunes (always a hit around here); garlic sautéed rapini and collards; and a special b-day cake (chocolate layers with sugar-free chocolate buttercream frosting (both from Sweet Freedom) and the Sweet Potato Frosting I wrote about a while back.
It was grand to spend a leisurely evening together fêting a dear friend. The EO also brought along her own pooch, another border collie cross, and The Girls were in heaven. (“We love having our friends over, too, Mum! Except next time, there should be a cake that we can eat as well.”)
Shindig Two: In addition to the birthday, the dinner was also occasion for a spontaneous mini-celebration in honor of the cookbook finally reaching the publisher. After numerous delays in formatting and glitches with the cover, it’s finally on its way! My publishing rep called yesterday to confirm that she received the files and their part of the book’s production will begin next week. YIPPPPPPEEEEEE!! (Of course, this means it will still take about three months before the book is in print, but it is out of my hands at this point). I can’t even begin to express what a relief that is! So we had a little toast in honor of Sweet Freedom last evening as well.
Shindig Three: Despite mountains of marking, I’ll be peeking in periodically at the Academy Awards, that shindig to beat all shindigs, that tribute to all things silicone and Juvéderm and Botox, that massive glitterati ego-massage that will take place on Sunday evening. From the Barbara Walters interviews to the Joan Rivers gaffes to the melodramatic and slurred acceptance speeches, I love it all. And even if I haven’t actually seen any of the movies, who cares? That’s not what the Oscars are all about, anyway!
Before I depart on break, I thought it might be fun to leave you with a little midterm quiz of your own to ponder while I’m away (and the best part–it doesn’t matter whether you know the answers or not!). I’ll reveal the “correct” responses when I get back (though with a bit of sleuthing, it should be fairly easy to find them before then).
[Chocolate birthday cake in all its uncut glory]
A Diet, Dessert and Dogs Mid-Term Quiz
Instructions: Please answer each of the following questions. Note that this is an open-blog test; answers can be found in previous entries. Please double space your answers.
1) DDD stands for:
a) The 2009, eco-friendly version of the pesticide “DDT”
b) Pamela Anderson’s bra size (now that she’s had a breast reduction)
I really hate making mistakes. Not only because they sometimes wreak havoc (“What? The model of Stonehenge on stage was supposed to be 18 FEET high, not 18 inches???” or, “What? But I thought the BLUE was the ‘panic button,’ Mr. President!!!”), but also because they make me feel really knuckle-brained sometimes (“Um, HH, can you come pick me up? I’m kind of stranded out here in the woods with The Girls. I’ve locked my keys in the car. . . and it’s running.*”).
Of course, that’s not to say that I don’t have my share of doozies lurking around in my past (though at least mine aren’t as egregious as the Y2K fiasco, or 8-track tapes, or Julia Roberts in Mary Ryan, SteelMagnoliasThe Pelican BriefStepmom anything except Pretty Woman). True, there were those three months I dated philandering Rocker Guy (he of the black leather pants); but for the most part, my mistakes tend to the be the innocuous kind, such as dialing my friend Babe’s number when I meant to call the CFO instead (I may be great at remembering phone numbers, but I don’t always note to whom they are attached); or buying decaf instead of regular; or wearing stripes with paisley (which, as we all know, couldn’t possibly go together).
And then there’s the entire gamut of food mistakes.
Salt instead of sugar? Done it. Chocolate seized while melting? Been there. Pie crust with soggy bottom? Don’t ask. Noodles so al dente they could double as a gardening implement? You betcha. Usually, these mishaps don’t bother me too much. Especially when it comes to baking, I realize that the process is so mercurial that what works perfectly one day may turn out completely different the next, so I compensate by adding extra sweetener, reducing the amount of flour, substituting a different kind of nut, or doing whatever is required to appease the petulant confection.
When it comes to cooking, I’m less inclined to experiment. Yet that’s exactly what I did this past weekend, purely as a result of my own gastronomical gaffes.
You know how some women will work an entire outfit around a single accesory? For instance, they might spy a cute little fuschia-and-orange flowered scarf and then go out and purchase matching pumps, belt, handbag and turtleneck, just so they can wear that scarf to a dinner party on Saturday night. In the end, that little rectangular scrap of rayon costs $872.48. Well, I must confess, I am that woman when it comes to ingredients. Which brings me to. . . . The Mistake of the Miso.
Mistake Number One: On Sunday, I decided to construct a brunch menu based on some extra miso gravy in the fridge. Originally, I’d planned to serve the gravy with sweet potato fries for dinner on Saturday, only to discover that I’d grated the last potato as part of The Girls’ dinner the previous night. (“And we really did appreciate that, Mum. But don’t worry about the extra gravy–we’d be happy to help you out with that.”)
Having gravy but nothing to slather it on, my imagination went to work. Mashed potatoes and gravy at brunch? Excellent. But what to accompany it? I pulled out a recipe I’d been eyeing for Tempeh-White Bean sausage patties from Vegan with a Vengeance . I planned to finish off the plate with simple pancakes sans the typical fanfare (my usual recipe contains fruit and other extras, not necessary here). Everything, it appeared, was in order.
Mistake Number Two: Since the sausages were somewhat time-intensive, I started with those. Isa does caution that these are softer than typical processed sausages, but mine fell completely apart on the plate, looking something like shards of clay from an old planter that had fallen off the windowsill. Would the HH eat broken patties? They did smell heavenly, however, so I set any worries aside and kept them warm while I moved on to the pancakes.
Mistake Number Three: Ah, yes, bad things always come in threes, don’t they? Perhaps it was something in the air. Perhaps it’s finally time to fill that new eyeglass prescription. Whatever the reason, the pancakes were a disaster as well. As thin as the line between sexy and hooker; as flat as the line before you call a Code Blue; and altogether too chewy, though not quite enough to cross the line from springy over to rubbery. I knew these would not pass HH muster, as my Honey favors airy, light, cake-like pancakes. (“Mum, seriously, we can help you out with that! Just toss a couple our way. . . “).
These griddle cakes were, it occurred to me, much more akin to crepes than true pancakes (though, according to Epicurious, a crepe is “the French word for ‘pancake,’” which would suggest the only difference between the two is the language in which you mumble, “Please pass the syrup”). For many of us, however, crepes evoke a thinner, more flexible cake, suitable for enveloping a sweet or savory filling. It’s sort of like the distinction between a scone and a biscuit, I think; but to get the scoop on that one, you’ll have to read Johanna’s blog.)
So. I found myself with crepes. And decided to just go along with that.
Rectifying all the Mistakes in a Single Delectable Brunch: In the end, I decided to re-assign the basic elements of the meal, crumbling the sausages as if they were ground meat, and mixing in a few chopped veggies. I stuffed this mixture into the crepes, then smothered the whole shebang with miso gravy. The dish was accompanied by a tried-and-true dandelion salad.
The resultant meal was a bit more elaborate than I’d anticipated, perhaps, but truly memorable. The HH appeared to relish every mouthful, peppering the meal with an occasional interjection of “Very nice,” or “Very tasty,” somewhat like Anthony Hopkins in 84 Charing Cross Road. When he’d polished off the first crepe, he requested another, and thoroughly enjoyed that one, too.
I once read that “there are no mistakes in cooking, only new recipes.” I can only agree. And this new recipe is definitely a keeper–make no mistake about it.
This dish makes a satisfying, filling brunch or light dinner. Vary the filling ingredients according to your own tastes–we didn’t have any mushrooms when I made this, but I think they’d be excellent in the filling, too.
“sausage” patties equivalent to about 5 patties, crumbled (I used the Tempeh-White Bean Sausages from Vegan with a Vengeance)
Make the filling: In a nonstick frypan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the sausage mixture and vegetables, and saute until the onion is translucent, up to 10 minutes. Keep stirring the mixture so that the sausage crumbles and resembles ground meat. Once cooked, turn off heat, cover, and keep warm.
Make the crepes: Measure the milk into a glass measuring cup, then add the oil and ground flax; mix well.
In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Add the milk mixture and stir well to combine. (It will seem very watery; this is as it should be).
Over medium heat in a small nonstick frypan, pour about 1/3-1/2 cup (I used a soup ladle), just enough to cover the bottom of the pan (roll the pan around a bit if necessary for the batter to cover it evenly). Cook until lots of bubbles appear on the surface, 4-5 minutes, then flip and quickly cook the other side only until dry. Remove to a plate to keep warm. You should end up with 4 or 5 crepes.
Once all the crepes are made, divide the filling into four equal parts, and place a strip of filling across the middle of each crepe. Using the sides of the crepe on each side of the strip of filling, fold toward the centre and overlap to cover the filling. Turn over seam side down onto a platter or oven-safe plate. Pour warm gravy over top and serve. Makes 4 servings.
*In reality, this actually happened to the HH and Ihad to go pick himup, but I switched our identities in the anecdote because I didn’t want to embarrass him by telling the real story on this blog.
WOCA Recap: Now that the (first) week of WOCA is over, I want to thank you all for your comments and encouragement. I can say that the week was not too bad (if by “not too bad” you mean “ripping-your-hair-out-frenzied-housecleaning-ricocheting-off-the-walls-like-a-whirling-dirvish-growling-at-your-dogs-like-a-pitt bull-staffie-cross-cravings-that-almost-felled-you-like-a-200-year-old-oak” not too bad. But I can now say I’ve gone (more than) a week eating only foods that are good for my body. I’m thinking of continuing, in fact, since I fear that even one bite of chocolate will send me into an instant replay of my previous bingeing. Rather than bore you all with my chocolate pangs, I’ll just try to soldier on and will mention only pertinent chocolate-related events or recipes, as they come up.