Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Friday, February 10th, 2012

I’ve made this a few times now, and everyone who has tried it has said they loved it. I have made it both in a spring form pan and in a square glass baking dish. In both cases, I line the bottom with parchment paper and grease the sides with butter, so I don’t have to worry about it sticking to the bottom of the pan.


  • About 115g of unsweet baking chocolate (I say about because when I measure the squares I may add 5-15g because of the size of the squares.
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/8 cup sugar (more or less depending on how sweet you like your chocolate. I am a big fan of dark chocolate, so I find this is enough sugar).


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Preheat over to 300.
  2. Take the first set of ingredients (baking chocolate, butter, sugar) and melt them in a double boiler. I just use a glass bowl inside my stovetop steamer with the lid off.
  3. Take the last group of ingredients (sugar, cocoa powder, eggs, and vanilla) and put them in the stand mixer (or use handheld mixer). Mix and them whip them for 2 minutes (I use high speed on my stand mixer).
  4. Mix the melted chocolate from step 1, into the mix from step 2.
  5. Pour into baking dish (see note about parchment paper above).
  6. Bake 30 minutes at 300.

Great both warm and cold. I prefer it slightly warm – I reheat pieces in the microwave for 5 seconds.

Fuul – A Syrian Breakfast

Sunday, November 29th, 2009

One of our favourite Syrian snacks is Fuul – a broad bean stew drizzled with lemon juice, olive oil, and tahini. We often found it at small stalls in the souk (market). Each stall serves it in a slightly different manner.

Our local Lebonese halal grocery store has some nice big (about 1 inch long and 1/2 inch wide) fava beans. With some experimentation and Web research, I’ve manage to reproduce something similar to one of our favourite types of fuul. I tested it out on Scott’s extended family this weekend, and it met rave reviews.

I hope you enjoy it too!


  • Large fava beans (one can or about 2 cups dried) *
  • 4 tbsp olive oil (separated)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (chopped)
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 tomato chopped
  • salt
  • sprinkle of cumin powder
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 2 tbsp of tahini (sesame paste)**

* If you cannot find fava beans, you can substitute white kidney beans or another large bean. It won’t taste the same, but it will still be good 🙂


  1. If using dried fava beans, soak them overnight with 1/2 tsp on baking soda. Cook until tender – this is best done with a pressure cooker, as boiling tends to make them mushy.
  2. Peel the brown shell off the fava beans. This is required for both canned and dried beans.
  3. Heat the fava beans. I use the microwave, but you could also bring them to a quick boil.
  4. Sprinkle salt over the fava beans. This is necessary when using dried beans. Canned beans are sometimes salted.
  5. In a deep frying pan, heat 2 tbsp of olive oil.
  6. Fry the garlic for 30 seconds.
  7. Add the fava beans and stir – fry for 1 minute.
  8. Add the onions and stir – fry for 1 minute (you don’t want to cook the onions too much, they should be crunchy).
  9. Remove from heat and add the tomatoes – stir.
  10. Divide into serving bowls (makes 3-4 servings).
  11. Sprinkle with cumin.
  12. Sprinkle with lemon juice.
  13. Sprinkle with the remaining olive oil.
  14. Drizzle with tahini.**

** Optional.  If you can find it, Lebanese tahini (which is a thick liquid rather than a paste) tastes better than Greek tahini.

Chiang Mai Noodles – Kao Soy

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

Chiang Mai Noodles
During our cooking class in Chiang Mai, we made a wonderful Thai curry dish served over egg noodles called Chiang Mai noodles or Kao Soy in Thai. This has become one of our favourite Thai dishes – although we never successful ordered it in Thailand, I’ve made it several times since we got home.

I had to modify the recipe from our cooking class to account for ingredients available in Canada, as following the exact recipe in our cookbook made a very salty and spice dish!

For those that want to try it, the recipe follows.


  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
  • 2 shallots
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon thai red curry
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1/2 to 1 lb of chicken cut into thin chunks (can also use pork or beef)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons Thai fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (about 1/2 a lime)
  • 1 lb Chinese egg noodles – fresh are best, but any egg noodle will do
  • 1 zucchini or Chinese eggplant (can substitute other vegetables – beans, bamboo shoots)
  • chopped green onion
  • chopped fresh coriander / cilantro


  1. Slice shallots, chop garlic, chop ginger, and set aside.
  2. Mix the Thai red curry with turmeric and set aside.
  3. Chop vegatables and set aside.
  4. Chop chicken and set aside.
  5. Heat oil pot – it is best to use a heavy skillet or dutch oven.
  6. Add a portion of the curry to the oil and stir until fragrant. The more you add now, the spicier the curry will be. Add a minimum of 1/2 a teaspoon.
  7. Add the shallots, garlic, and ginger – stir until shallots are cooked.
  8. Add the chicken, and brown (about 1 minute). If the pot is too dry, add a tablespoon or two of water.
  9. Add 1/2 the coconut milk, 1/2 cup of water, and simmer until the chicken is cooked (about 5 minutes).
  10. Add the vegetables and simmer for 2 minutes.
  11. Add remaining curry and stir until it is well mixed.
  12. Add sugar, fish sauce, lime juice, and remaining coconut milk – heat until just before boiling.
  13. Taste – if not salty enough, add more fish sauce. You may also wish to add more sugar.
  14. Set aside – turn off the heat if the pot will keep it warm; otherwise, turn to low heat.
  15. Cook egg noodles per package instructions.
  16. Put a serving of egg noodles in a bowl, top with curry, green onions and cilantro.
  17. Enjoy.

Yellow eggs and zucchini

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

Ok, so not exactly Green Eggs and Ham, but we have another recipe for you.
We eat oatmeal every morning, but Becky often finds that it doesn’t provide her
with enough protein. To supplement the oatmeal, whenever possible, we also
have eggs for breakfast. Here is our favourite recipe. The curry powder adds
and extra zing, and with the variation in curry powders, and the small
amounts we buy, it always tastes a bit different.

3-4 eggs
1/2 onion (yellow sweet is best, purple also works well)
1 small zucchini (optional)
1 teaspoon curry powder
Olive oil

1. Chop onion into small pieces.
2. Add onion, olive oil, salt, and curry powder to the frying pan. The
amount of oil you need depends upon whether or not you have a no-stick pan.
Be a little generous with the amount, as it makes the onion sweeter.
3. Chop zucchini into 1 cm squares – and set aside.
4. Start cooking the onions – if you can simmer on your stove, then cook
them slowly, to bring out the sweetness.
5. When the onions are clear, add zucchini and fry for 2 minutes.
6. Crack eggs directly into frying pan, then quickly stir to scramble them.
7. Keep stirring as the eggs cook to prevent burning. Cook until they are
the texture you like.
8. Enjoy.

Feeds two hungry cyclists in combination with oatmeal.

Winnipeg, the cottage, and great oatmeal

Sunday, August 16th, 2009

We spent four nights and three full days in Winnipeg – actually, it was two days in Winnipeg and one afternoon out at the Tuenis’ cottage. We were happy to visit to the cottage, but really did wish for better weather. Upon our arrival, it started to rain. Luckily for us, Tony had started up the sauna, so we were able to enjoy an afternoon sweat session before adjuring to the cottage for a not-so-rowdy game of dice – amusingly the same game we learned to play back in Comox with Jane and Paul. For the record, Becky and Scott both won the second game.
Hanging out at the cottage.

On Saturday, we were treated to a wonderful lunch and visit with Fred and Diana (Diana is Scott’s first cousin once removed) and a great dinner with Scott’s Uncle Terry. It was nice to visit, and hear stories about their travels while sharing pictures and stories about our journey.

Fred, Scott, and Dianna

Uncle Terry and Scott

It rained pretty much the entire time we were in Winnipeg, so we were extra happy to have a home to live in (thanks Donna and Tony). It was also very neat to see where Katrina got her super cheery personality and tenacity. Although it took some searching, we certainly did find some great examples of “Friendly Manitoba”.

On our way to Diana and Fred’s for lunch, we detoured to Grant’s Old Mill, a Winnipeg historic site where Scott remembered buying grain and flour as a child. We picked up some stone chopped oats and barley for our morning oatmeal, but skipped the mill tour and free hotdogs in favour of Diana’s delicious lunch.

Oatmeal is our breakfast staple, and we think we have now perfected the recipe, so we decided to share it.

1 pound of whole rolled oats
1/2 pound of rolled barley (looks just like the oats) – just add more oats if you can’t find the barley
1 cup of coconut (unsweetened)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 to 1/2 cup hemp seeds
1/4 to 1/2 cup cinnamon
3/4 to 1 cup brown sugar
1 to 1 1/2 cup whole almonds
1 tablespoon sea salt

1. Place whole almonds into two bags (zip locks work well). Take hammer or other hard object and break up the almonds – I find a hammer and a cement floor work well. If no hammer available, whole almonds are OK too
2. Add almonds plus all ingredients above into a large bowl and mix.
3. Distribute oatmeal into six containers (I use zip lock freezer bags – medium size). Each container serves 2 hungry cyclists first thing in the morning.

Cooking directions:
1. In an insulated pot, add one packet of oatmeal and boiling water to cover 1 cm.
2. Stir and let sit for 5 minutes.
3. Serve into bowls.
4. Add your choice of milk (cow, soy, rice, almond,…)
5. Add a large spoonful of peanut butter or almond butter and stir.
6. Enjoy.

Note 1: You could also boil the oatmeal for 2-3 minutes instead of letting it sit.
Note 2: We use regular oats, because we like the texture. If you use quick or instant oats, then you can just add milk immediately after stirring the boiling water – no need to heat or let stand.