Green Borscht with Spinach and Tofu

Have you ever heard of green borscht, the fair easy going sister of  the traditional red one? Green borscht is quite popular in Ukraine during summer time and was traditionally make with sorrel leaves  that landed the soup its delightful sour notes (hence the summer time popularity when sorrel is readily available).

img_5031Lacking sorrel, spinach and a bit of white vinegar do the trick nicely, and tofu adds a bit of extra nutrition and texture. Hope your family will enjoy it as much as mine does 🙂 Continue reading

Beet Leaf Rolls with Mushroom Sauce

This dish is inspired by a post from another blog, the one that belongs to the fabulous Jillian Harris. I have seen her beet rolls recipe quite awhile ago and was reminded of it recently when browsing the stalls of the local farmers’ market.

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Served with a side of tomato-cucumber-avocado salad

I used the actual beets for borscht and was left with all those gorgeous leaves that I could not make myself throw away. Some of them got shredded and added to borscht and the rest became beet rolls. This recipe seems a bit odd at first as you are wrapping yeast dough into beet leaves and baking it, but the result is simply delicious! Creamy mushroom sauce adds another level of flavour to this tasty dish and it is great as leftovers as well. I will definitely be adding it to my regular meal rotation.

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Perfect (Garlic) Mashed Potatoes

You probably know by now that in my world potato is a magical vegetable. It can be cooked in so many different ways and used in such a variety of dishes that it is an absolute staple in my shopping cart and on my dining table (I do not have a kitchen table and we eat all of our meals in the dining room, in case you were wondering ;)).

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A bowl of yummy!

One of my favourite ways to eat potatoes is to have them mashed. I always make a big batch and use leftovers for a quick gnocchi meal or to make stuffing for pyrohy (AKA pierogie). I have discovered over the years that not everyone knows how to make perfect mashed potatoes: light, fragrant and creamy. They make a perfect side dish to anything and are great on their own as well (if you are anything like me). Continue reading

Maple Cottage Cheese Pancakes (AKA Syrnyky)

Who doesn’t like pancakes? Pancakes are always welcome at our breakfast table and leftovers (which there are rarely any) are eaten through the day as a snack. In Ukraine pancakes with cottage cheese called syrnyky (syr is cheese in Ukrainian) are very popular. I decided to give mine a Canadian twist and added maple syrup for sweetness and extra flavour.

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Perfect breakfast food

I consider syrnyky  a healthy(ish) version of a traditional pancake as the batter is mostly nutrient rich cottage cheese and there is not a lot of flour in it. And you can never go wrong with a little bit of maple syrup, right? Continue reading

Smoky Sweet Potato Fries

Today’s post is quick and short and delicious! It is about sweet potato fries, baked version. Sweet potatoes are full of goodness and nutrients and taste amazing. They are also easy to prepare.

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So delicious!

Mine have a smoky flavour as I use smoked paprika as the main seasoning. I like to peel my potatoes, but you may want to skip this step, which will make the preparation even faster. A little bit of whole wheat flour gives potatoes a lovely texture and the quantity of oil is minimal. Perfect side dish all around! Continue reading

Leek and Potato Soup With Kale

Have you got some potatoes, leeks and kale kicking around? How about making some soup?

IMG_1796When I was growing up, I hated soups. My mom always made me eat them, as she is a firm believer that warm liquid keeps guts healthy. Maybe she is right, but I don’t mind eating soups any longer. I love them, specially when prepared by her. During my early cooking days I was quite intimidated by soups and thought that making them was a form of fine art. And then I discovered cream soups and everything got less scary. Somehow, pureeing the soup hides any imperfections, makes it look sophisticated AND even kid-friendly (all the lovely vegetables are hidden from the vegetable-wary eaters). Continue reading

Chicken Strips

Chicken strips are on the menu today.

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Juicy and crunchy: the whole package!

My elder daughter is an extremely picky eater. Her list of approved dishes is pretty short: pizza, pasta, rice. I can kill myself cooking all kinds of delicacies and she would look at them as if they are about to jump off the plate and bite her. Packing her lunch bag is a nightmare and it consists of a steady rotation of pasta and french toast. In an attempt to broaden her palate I have even read a book titled “French Kids Eat Everything” but it turned out that I am not a French parent and she is not a French kid, alas! But I have recently discovered that she started looking favourably at chicken strips. I try not to buy frozen meals if making my own is an option, so I decided to give chicken strips a try. Continue reading

One More Way to Bake Potatoes

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This one is a crowd pleaser and will not take up too much of your time. All you need is some potatoes and bacon, a match made in food heaven (at least in my opinion). Make it as a quick snack if you have company over or as a lazy weeknight dinner, with a salad on the side. My dad tasted a similar dish while visiting relatives that live near Carpathian mountains in Ukraine and was so impressed with it that my mom had to try making it. The original version had small potatoes cut in half and topped with a nice chubby slice of smoked salo (Ukrainian type of bacon that has no, or very little, meat). It is delicious and comes with a variety of seasonings. I improvised given the lack of proper salo and unwillingness to wait for too long for the thicker cut spuds to cook through. I like to season them with salt and pepper as bacon packs quite a bit of flavour, but feel free to experiment with your favourite seasonings. The result will be delicious! I do wonder, how this dish is not a pub food staple? Continue reading