Monday, May 28, 2012

Candy Sushi

Sushi platter!!
This past Saturday I was invited to a wedding shower for my sister-in-law's sister, Caitlin!  It was candy-themed and I wanted to create a dish that would dovetail nicely with the theme...hence candy sushi!!!  This is something that I have never tried before, but you know me!  I will try anything once - and I wasn't disappointed!  This was relatively easy and took approximately 1/2 hr!? (The kids were blown away that I made something unhealthy!  Just to show that I can be a 'fun' Mummy, I packed them two pieces of sushi each in their lunchbags!!)
3 cups rice krispies cereal
2 tbsp butter
1 cup mini marshmallows
gummy worms
Swedish or gummy fish 
Green fruit roll ups
chocolate sauce
Orange marshmallow wedges
Wasabi peas*
"Nigiri" sushi with wasabi peas!!
"Rice" rolls with "ginger" & "soy sauce"!!
  • In a small pot, melt the butter over medium high heat.  Add the mini marshmallows and stir until they are melted.  Take pot off the heat.  Place rice krispies in a large mixing bowl and add melted marshmallows - stirring together until combined.
  • Place a sheet of parchment paper on a rimmed baking dish and pour out rice krispies mixture on to the pan.  Press the mixture out into a flat sheet approximately 1/2" thick.  Approximately 1/2" in from the edge of the rice krispies mixture, place two lines of gummy worms widthwise across the sheet.  Take the parchment paper and gently roll the rice krispies over the gummy worms and using your hands, press into a cylinder shape (much like making real sushi on a bamboo mat or 'makisu').  Cut the roll off of the sheet of rice krispies.   Like you are cutting pieces of sushi, cut the rice krispies log in 1/4" rounds. (If they flatten a little, just mould with your hands!)  Wrap a strip of green fruit roll ups around the edge to mimic the seaweed (nori) found on the outside of actual maki sushi!
  • Another style of 'sushi' you can make is nigiri.  I achieved this by pressing the rice krispies mixture into the pan so it is 1" thick.  I then cut it into 1/2" wide, 2" long pieces.  Then I simply placed a gummy fish on top of the 'rice' and wrapped a thin strip of fruit roll up around the middle to imitate nigiri!
  • For soy sauce I used chocolate sauce.  For the pickled ginger I used the orange marshmallow wedges and simply cut them in half lengthwise.  *Not until I finished did it occur to me that I could have used fondant icing and coloured it green for wasabi!  Instead I substituted my guilty pleasure - wasabi peas!
  • ENJOY and have fun playing with your food :0)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Why Wheat-Free??

As a family we have been wheat-free for almost 1 1/2 yrs now and we couldn't feel better!  I subscribe to this blog named after the famous book "Wheat Belly", and it has many fascinating facts regarding wheat.  The latest entry had answers to one of the questions I am frequently asked: "What is the benefit of going wheat free if I am not celiac or have an intolerance?"  I personally have no gluten intolerance but decided to make the whole family wheat-free as Devon and I should support both India and Greg.  Thought those who have been contemplating a wheat-free lifestyle, would be interested in this:

What’s the point of avoiding wheat if you don’t have celiac disease or gluten-sensitivity? Many reasons:
1) You avoid the gliadin protein of wheat, the opiate in wheat that stimulates appetite and increases calorie consumption by 440 calories per day. (Eliminate gliadin and calorie consumption drops by 440 calories per day.)
2) You avoid the lectin in wheat, wheat germ agglutinin, that is directly toxic to the intestinal tract and causes abnormal intestinal permeability that Trojan horse’s foreign substances into the bloodstream, causing multiple inflammatory diseases. You may also restore leptin sensitivity to restore the capacity for weight loss.
3) You avoid the amylopectin A of wheat, the “complex carbohydrate” that accounts for the fact that two slices of whole grain bread increases blood sugar higher than 6 teaspoons of table sugar.
4) You avoid the alpha amylase inhibitors that trigger wheat allergy, likely the trigger for the boom in wheat allergy among kids.

There’s more, but you get the idea!!
If you would like to read more about the way that wheat has been altered over the years, check out this link.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Ensalada Grangero (Mexican Farmer's Salad)

Cinco de Mayo was this past Saturday and our friends, Michelle and Sean and their children, joined us in a veritable feast honouring our newly adopted homeland of Mexico!  We took our recipes from the Better Homes & Gardens "Mexican" magazine (on stands till July 2012) and were super impressed with the results!

This salad was made by Michelle and is delicious and beautiful in its simplicity.

3 ears of fresh sweet corn, husks and silks removed
1 1/2 lbs of fresh green beans, trimmed
3 cups grape tomatoes
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup snipped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup olive oil
3 fresh jalapeno chile peppers, stemmed, seeded and chopped*
2 shallots, chopped
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 tsp bottled minced roasted garlic
1/4 tsp salt

  • In a Dutch oven, cook corn in a large amount of boiling water for 5 to 7 minutes or until tender.  Remove corn from Dutch oven, and set aside to cool.  Add beans to the boiling water in Dutch oven;  cook for 3 to 4 minutes or just until crisp-tender.  Drain beans in a colander; rinse with cold water and drain well.  Cut kernels from corn cobs.
  • In a large bowl combine corn kernels, beans, tomatoes and onion.  Toss to combine.
  • For dressing, in a food processor or blender, combine cilantro, oil, chile peppers, shallots, vinegar, garlic and salt.  Cover and process or blend until nearly smooth.  Drizzle dressing over vegetables; toss to coat.
  • ENJOY!