Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy New Year!

Hello everyone - I hope your holidays have been healthy and happy and that the spirit of Santa continues to shine hope in your hearts as we turn the page on another year.

Those of you who were with me last year will recall my resolution to take more chances and step out of my own ruts and what a year it has been! From auditioning for Recipes to Riches, going on to become the Entree host for Kraft Foods Canada Real Women of  Philadelphia, losing 25 pounds, running an 8 k road race, and starting my own cooking channel; this has been a year of adventure!

Can I get a Towanda?

I plan to carry on the trend in the New Year starting with a kick off to health as I tackle my next 25 pounds! Watch for more healthy delicious recipes and join me as I take on more new adventures!

So strap on those running shoes, and get your wooden spoons ready!

2012 is going to be a banner year!

It's time to create some magic!

Happy New Year everyone. Health, happiness, and blessings to all!

~Lyndsay

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Sweet and Savoury Nut Mix

I have been having such a great time this year making gifts from the kitchen and today's Sweet and Savoury nut mix is a quick and delicious recipe that can be made in less than an hour. Be sure you make lots though as one handful is never enough!

Merry Christmas everyone!
For printable recipe click here

Please enjoy my easy to follow step by step how to video!




 Ingredients
  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • 2 cups roasted unsalted cashews 
  • 1/2 cup walnuts 
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3/4 cups brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 3 Tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • 3 dashes hot sauce
Directions
  1.  In a small bowl, combine the salt and spices; set aside. 
  2. In a large heavy skillet, melt butter. Add walnuts and pecans; cook over medium heat until nuts are toasted, about 4 minutes.Sprinkle with spice mixture. Add the brown sugar, water, Worcestershire and hot sauce. 
  3. Cook and stir for 1-2 minutes or until sugar is melted. Spread on foil to cool. Store in an airtight container. Yield: 7 cups.
Adapted from original recipe for Sweet and Spicy Nuts Recipe at Taste of Home



***

Author:

Lyndsay Wells is a professional trainer, writer, and program developer with a passion for food and cooking. She is an award winning recipe developer, and a website ambassador for Kraft Foods Canada. Lyndsay believes cooking should be approachable and easy and has great tips and ideas for putting together sophisticated looking dishes that cooks of all levels can accomplish.

Visit her daily on her blog, The Kitchen Witch or on her YouTube Channel, CHARMED With The Kitchen Witch.

Facebook Twitter YouTube


Monday, December 19, 2011

Gifts from the Kitchen - How to Make Holiday and Truffle Salt

As many of you know, I love giving gifts from my kitchen - that's the Kitchen Witch in me, I suspect, wanting to share a little magic with those I love.

And what could be more magical than beautifully flavoured salts like my holiday salt blend or Truffle Salt from My Fare Foodie? Truffle salt is traditionally very expensive and this "Poor Man's Version" is just excellent. Serve it on fries, kick up your mashed potatoes, use it in warm butter with lobster, or sprinkle it on a steak - anyway you use it, this truffle salt is a lovely way to have a rich dining experience on an everyday budget!

My holiday salt is a lovely blend of fresh parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, and lemon that will add gorgeous flavour to your Christmas turkey, chicken, salmon, white fish, pork - truly, the sky is the limit!

I intend to give these salt blends to a few foodie friends as well as stuff a few stockings. To see how it all comes together and how I package the salts, watch my How To Video: http://youtu.be/hAE29KTpAyk

The printable recipes can be found here: Holiday Salts

Happy Holidays everyone!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Gifts From the Kitchen - Holiday Tapenade

The other day I featured a wonderful Gift From the Kitchen: Pound Cake with Caramel Sauce and today its time to embrace my savoury side!

I love olives and one of my favourite condiments is tapenade. However, I'm very particular about texture and flavour and because of that never purchase tapenade because it's so easy to make. Better still, it makes a lovely and elegant hostess gift and it can also be used in a variety of different ways - two of which I will be sharing later in the week.

Please enjoy my easy to follow step by step video!



Visit the printable recipe here: Holiday Tapenade

Ingredients
  • 1 375 ml jar large green pimento stuffed olives - rough chopped 
  • 1 375 ml jar kalamata olives, sliced and pitted - rough chopped 
  • 1/4 cup Sun Dried Tomatoes in oil, drained - rough chopped 
  • 2 minced garlic cloves 
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves 
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme 
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves 
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano leaves 
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Transfer to jars with tight fitting lids and refrigerate. Recipe will keep in the refrigerator for two weeks.



***

Author:

Lyndsay Wells is a professional trainer, writer, and program developer with a passion for food and cooking. She is an award winning recipe developer, and a website ambassador for Kraft Foods Canada. Lyndsay believes cooking should be approachable and easy and has great tips and ideas for putting together sophisticated looking dishes that cooks of all levels can accomplish.

Visit her daily on her blog, The Kitchen Witch or on her YouTube Channel, CHARMED With The Kitchen Witch.

Facebook Twitter YouTube


Monday, December 12, 2011

Gifts from the Kitchen: Decadent Caramel Sauce with Pound Cake

There is nothing quite so gratifying than creating lovely gifts for the holidays from my kitchen.

Join me today as I put together a moist and delicious pound cake and a luscious caramel sauce for a very dear friend!

Visit the link here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8uVuZ3fxsg
For recipes:
Pound Cake
Caramel Sauce

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Chicken Shepherd's Pie

Every good cook needs a few go to recipes over the holiday season that can be made ahead and popped into the oven for a warm and comforting treat after a long day - and today's delicious casserole provides all of the above!

This easy to assemble soul warming dish can be made earlier in the day and refrigerated, or cooled and frozen for up to three months. If baking from frozen, be sure to thaw it in your refrigerator over night.

Enjoy this lovely and comforting dish!

Chicken Shepherd's Pie
For printable recipe click HERE


















Ingredients

  • 3 cups chopped button mushrooms
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into small, bite sized pieces
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp herbs de provence or dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 package low sodium chicken gravy mix
  • 6 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp creamy horseradish
Directions
  1. Saute the mushrooms and chicken over medium high heat in olive oil in a large non-stick skillet or Dutch oven.
  2. Add the garlic, herbs, salt, and pepper and continue to saute until the mushrooms begin to release their water. 
  3. Add the frozen peas and continue to saute until the peas are warmed through.
  4. Combine the gravy mix with cold water as per package directions and whisk together in a small bowl. Add the whisked gravy to the pan and bring to the boil.
  5. Remove to a small casserole dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
  6. Boil the potatoes until fork tender and mash with remaining ingredients until fluffy. 
  7. Spoon potatoes over the chicken mixture and spread evenly over all. 
  8. Bake in a pre-heated 350 oven for 30 minutes until bubbly and golden.


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Friday, December 9, 2011

Holiday Baguette Crisps

Holiday preparations are certainly underway here at Casa de Kitchen Witch! I've got my tree trimmed, the decorations out, scented candles everywhere, and I just picked up four beautiful poinsettias this afternoon.

Over the next few weeks most of my free time will be spent in the kitchen and I wouldn't have it any other way. I will be making all kinds of wonderful goodies to give away as gifts, easy and delicious appetizers, and all kinds of delicious sweet treats!

To get things started, though, here is an easy to make holiday snack that is a great replacement for potato chips or processed crackers.

For the printable recipe click HERE

Please enjoy my easy to follow step by step video.



Ingredients
  • 1 large baguette loaf
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup shredded, aged white cheddar cheese (or other favourite cheese of your choice)
Directions

1. Slice the baguette into thin slices (about 1/2 inch each)
2. Mix the garlic, salt, and olive oil together and brush baguette slices on both sides with the oil mixture.
3. Bake in a pre-heated 350 oven for 10-12 minutes until cheese is bubbly and the baguette slices are toasted and crispy.
4. Turn the oven heat off and leave in for another 15 minutes to crisp further. Serve in place of crackers or chips.




***

Author:

Lyndsay Wells is a professional trainer, writer, and program developer with a passion for food and cooking. She is an award winning recipe developer, and a website ambassador for Kraft Foods Canada. Lyndsay believes cooking should be approachable and easy and has great tips and ideas for putting together sophisticated looking dishes that cooks of all levels can accomplish.

Visit her daily on her blog, The Kitchen Witch or on her YouTube Channel, CHARMED With The Kitchen Witch.

Facebook Twitter YouTube

Monday, December 5, 2011

Turkey Tourtieres Bundles

It's a Monday morning and I'm sitting on my couch looking out the front window hoping for snow - if not for the entire winter, at least for the holidays. A certain peace descends when the world is blanketed in white, and I long for the contentment of an evening walk through the neighborhood to admire the lights as the snow falls gently around me.

Last night I went for an early evening jog and was impressed by the creativity my neighbors put into their light displays - a talent that has never been our forte. In our family most of the Christmas creativity shines through with our indoor decorations and the food we cook - and this year more than ever, I'm having to be even more creative because I'm trying to lighten up some of our old classics.

That's what I have today. An amazing, delicious, new take on my family's Christmas Eve staple: Tourtieres. Traditional tourtieres is a meat pie made with ground pork, and ground beef - a recipe I thought couldn't be beaten - until now.

 















 My updated, lightened up Turkey Tourtiere Bundles are made with a mixture of ground turkey, turkey sausage, and granny smith apple. The turkey is infused with a sweet and savoury assortment of holiday seasonings and is then wrapped in a cozy blanket of Phyllo pastry and baked until crispy and golden.

Better still, these magical little delights can be made ahead and frozen for up to one month making them the perfect bite for holiday entertaining! Scroll down for the recipe or watch the How To video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FVEF2ethUpI

 

Turkey Tourtieres Bundles
For printable recipe click HERE

















Ingredients
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 12 turkey sausages (1/2 pound)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored and diced
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2 cups no salt added chicken broth
  • 3 potatoes, boiled and mashed
  • 1/4 cup Philadelphia Cream Cheese Light in the Chive and Onion flavor
  • 10 sheets of Phyllo pastry
  • 1/4 cup melted butter

Directions

  1. Brown the ground turkey and turkey sausage over medium high heat in a nonstick Dutch oven that has been prepared with cooking spray.
  2. When the turkey is cooked through, add the apple, onion, and spices. Stir well. Pour the chicken broth over all, turn to high, and bring to the boil. 
  3. Turn heat to medium and let the turkey mixture continue to boil until the liquid is almost completely evaporated. Stir in the mashed potatoes and the cream cheese. Set aside to cool.
  4. Lay 1 phyllo sheet on a work surface. (keep remaining phyllo covered with a damp towel) Lightly brush sheet with melted butter. Top with 1 sheet, brush with butter. Repeat with remaining 3 sheets, leaving top unbuttered. 
  5. Cut phyllo stack into 6, 5 1/2 by 6 inch pieces. Nestle each into a cup of a standard muffin tin. Spoon 2 tbsp of the tourtiere mixture into each. Fold top over enveloped style bringing the corners to the centre and brush with butter to seal. 
  6. The tourtieres bundles can be frozen at this point for up to one month or covered and refrigerated until ready to bake. 
  7. Bake in a pre-heated 375 oven for 14-16 minutes. If baking from frozen, add 2 minutes to the cooking time




***

Author:

Lyndsay Wells is a professional trainer, writer, and program developer with a passion for food and cooking. She is an award winning recipe developer, and a website ambassador for Kraft Foods Canada. Lyndsay believes cooking should be approachable and easy and has great tips and ideas for putting together sophisticated looking dishes that cooks of all levels can accomplish.

Visit her daily on her blog, The Kitchen Witch or on her YouTube Channel, CHARMED With The Kitchen Witch.

Facebook Twitter YouTube


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Lemon Brined Pork Roast

December, and the air grows crisp and cold. The world has turned from vibrant shades of red and gold, to the mellower hush of white and snow. Christmas ornaments come out from boxes, each one packed with loving care as year by year we ready ourselves for the festive season - the twinkle of lights and the sparkle of wrapping paper infusing our spirits with excitement and joy - bolstering us to plod onward, past December 25, into a New Year and the chilly second half of winter with a renewed sense of hope about the things to come.

I live in the honest and excited belief that with each new year comes opportunity and that not knowing what's just around the bend is the most exciting thing of all. The wondering as we gaze at cleverly wrapped presents under the Chistmas tree is, to me, a perfect metaphor for life - what gifts are in store as we make ready to close this year and open the next?

What gifts are in store this holiday season? And what foods, both sweet and savoury, will we be preparing with loving hands? Fruits and nuts, pastries, and buttery cookies, or the golden succulence of a perfect roast...

Like my newest recipe for Lemon Brined Pork Roast.

















Boneless pork sirloin in a lemony Greek inspired brine, roasted to golden succulence alongside winter vegetables and potatoes and bathed in a lemony gravy. No one would ever believe how easy this is to make!

Scroll down for the recipe or watch the How To video here:  http://youtu.be/wnRNR8obCvc




And then get ready for a magical holiday season here at The Kitchen Witch and on CHARMED.


Lemon Brined Pork Roast
For printable recipe click HERE

Brine Time: 24 hours
Roast Time: 2 hours
Serves: 6-8

Ingredients:

  •  1 boneless 5 lb pork sirloin roast
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 cup fresh oregano, chopped
  • 5 tablespoons kosher salt 
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4-6 medium potatoes
  • 4 carrots 
  • 1 onion
  • 1 pkg of pork roast gravy mix
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
Directions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, stirring constantly until salt is dissolved. Brine the roast for 24 hours.
  2. Rinse well, dry completely with paper towels, brush with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with dried oregano, garlic powder and black pepper.
  3. Roast pork in a shallow roasting pan at 325 for one hour. 
  4. Meanwhile, peel and half the carrots, and thinly slice the onion. Set aside.
  5. Peel and quarter potatoes; cook in boiling water for about 10 minutes. Drain, let cool. Remove pork loin from oven and remove from roaster. Place potatoes, carrots, and onion in the roaster and toss with pan juices. Replace pork roast and place the vegetables all around. Roast an additional 45 to 60 minutes, or until pork registers 165° on a thermometer.
  6. Cover roast pork loin with foil and let stand for about 15 minutes before slicing. Make gravy according to package directions. Add lemon juice, oregano, and the pan juices.

 


Author:

Lyndsay Wells is a professional trainer, writer, and program developer with a passion for food and cooking. She is an award winning recipe developer, and a website ambassador for Kraft Foods Canada. Lyndsay believes cooking should be approachable and easy and has great tips and ideas for putting together sophisticated looking dishes that cooks of all levels can accomplish.

Visit her daily on her blog, The Kitchen Witch or on her YouTube Channel, CHARMED With The Kitchen Witch.

Facebook Twitter YouTube

Subscribe to me on YouTube


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