Before I get into the featured recipe, I wanted to introduce you to our newest addition to the family. I have had my eye on a sleek entry-level DSLR camera for quite some time. As I am quite loyal to the Canon brand of cameras, the EOS Rebel T3i was an easy choice. Therefore, from this moment on all my photos will be captured by this beauty. I hope you enjoy! Moving on…
This featured salad is my all-time favourite. It’s super light and simple to make. Plus the colours are gorgeous. My boyfriend makes this salad regularly for potlucks and it’s always a huge hit. Tomato, cucumber, onion and parsley. Perfect use of all your garden vegetables!
I am not a vegetable person. I never have been. I probably never will be. Any time while growing up when I would complain to Claudia that I was hungry, her immediate response was “have a carrot”, or “have a cucumber”. This infuriated me, as I clearly wanted a cookie…or cookie dough (see image top right of the blog). I would react by pouting. I did a lot this as a child. Broccoli and cauliflower were my two veggie enemies. I despised them. Even to this day, I am not a part of their fan club. However, if integrated correctly, such as cauliflower in Claudia’s Curryflower Soup, or broccoli in this Broccoli Salad recipe, I could eat veggies all day.
This dish is the ultimate summer salad. I’ve already had this salad about 5 times in the past 2 months, and it isn’t even summer yet. Perfect for potlucks, BBQ’s and even lunch. There are many variations to Broccoli Salad. I find this one of Claudia’s is by far my favourite.
I have absolutely no idea where Claudia got her Mexican cooking skills from. This recipe is one of the many dishes that has wowed not only my family, but my friends as well. I would be lying if I didn’t admit that there were a few times during my younger years when I would come home from a fun evening of dancing with my friends and we would search my parents the fridge to see if there were any leftovers. On the instances where we found Chicken Fajitas, we felt as though we had won the lottery. This dish is a very healthy and delicious addition to anyone’s dinner repertoire.
I’m not really a carboholic. I’m more of a sugarholic. I like sweets..the more chocolate in those sweets, the better. However, there is something to be said about the weather changing your eating habits. As the weather continues to flirt with below freezing temperatures, I find myself craving heavier foods. Casseroles and soups have been my addiction the past few weeks. I can’t get enough. Not to mention this is probably one of the busiest times for me professionally, so the easier that carb-loaded meal is to make, the happier I am.
Hearty Soup is probably the easiest recipe Claudia has in her cooking repertoire. It’s so easy that while my Dad watched me and Claudia make this soup for the blog, he proclaimed that even he could make it and continued to copy the recipe for his own meal arsenal for an upcoming hunting trip. Beats his pickled eggs recipe he currently has that’s for sure. This soup is so delicious, it leaves you wondering how something so simple can be so good.
This particular recipe caused a lot of different philosophical cooking debates between myself and Claudia. The largest being that young garden potatoes should only be used in this recipe. ONLY THIS RECIPE. I learned this the hard way when Claudia called me up last week to tell me she dug out some “nice young potatoes” from our garden in Saskatchewan. When she told me this I was quite happy, as I had my eye on this great potato salad recipe that I wanted to make for her and my Dad the following week. BIG mistake. BIG. A mere two seconds went by after the words “use these young potatoes for potato salad” flew out of my mouth when Claudia interjected with one word – “No”. Being quite a stubborn daughter and fond of debate, I then asked her why I couldn’t use the “young garden potatoes” for my potato salad. Her answer (said in a sarcastic ‘well aren’t you a piece of work’ response – quite possibly rolling her eyes at me): “Because, young potatoes are for dill potatoes only.” Fair enough Mom, fair enough.
Dill potatoes are very common in Ukrainian households. Maybe it’s because potatoes were a staple on the farm or in gardens. Probably because it was dirt cheap (no pun intended) to grow and cook with in general. Either way, they are so simple to make, yet so comforting and delicious. Best in summer when you have “young potatoes” and fresh garden dill. Now, when I asked Claudia her definition of “young potatoes” for this post, I didn’t get a really clear, definite answer. Essentially, they are potatoes that are pulled out of the ground at an earlier stage and not left to fully mature. P.s. they are delicious!