Sometimes, simple is best :: rice and falafel

music to read by :: Piya Re (Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan)

Many moons ago, we found our way to Egypt and spent some time hanging in Cairo, Luxor, and Aswan, with a sail up the Nile, sleeping on a felucca, not to mention swimming. Yes, we swam in the Nile. Yes, it was February. Yes, it was cold. And yes, it was clean, as we were not swimming anywhere near a large urban center. And frankly, we stank.

Giza Plateau, photo par moi

We ate in fancy restaurants, hotel restaurants, were cooked for by the captain of the felucca, ate on a barge, and even ventured into a Kentucky Fried Chicken run by the blind. For the record, it was the best chicken I ever ate.

But my favourite meal was some type of  ‘peasant’ food consisting of rice, lentils, beans (?), sauce, hot sauce, and who knows what else. We ate it most days in Cairo, tho getting it meant running across 8 lanes of Egyptian traffic, waiting in line with locals, and then pointing, as the workers didn’t speak english. Our hotel staff laughed at us as they could not believe we north americans would rather eat ‘peasant’ food instead of in one of the more trendy restaurants.

Sometimes, simple food is just better food. Continue reading


Vegetarian with bacon, please

music to read by :: True Vegetarian (Clint Eastwood and General Saint)

Now, before some people get all up my business about this, I was a vegetarian for many, many years. And for a brief moment in time, also vegan.

Then I was pregnant and all bets were off.

And yes, I know, it is possible to be vegetarian, pregnant, and healthy. But not if you were me.

Because, you see, from about 4 weeks to the very morning I went into labour, I had morning sickness.

Except let’s call it … oh, I don’t know … hey! I’m awake sickness! Seriously, I weighed less at full term that I did prior to becoming pregnant.

But because I made the decision to eat meat and consume dairy I managed to stay somewhat healthy and consume enough of what my daughter needed to pop out at close to 9lbs, and grow to be almost as tall as I am  – at 9yo.

One of my favourite vertical moments from the pregnancy, was eating out with friends. The hubby ordered a vegetarian burger – with bacon. The cook came to our table before preparing our food to verify the order and to check to see if my husband was sane. His response to the cook was, “hey, you make a damn good veggie burger and I like bacon.”

Vegetarian Pizza with Bacon

This is a quick and easy dough that requires no rising. So yay! Pizza can be an anytime meal! Also, I have no counter space, so I make this (and all my bread products, frankly) in one bowl, with no turning out for kneading. You’ll need …. Continue reading


some days you just have to yell, “it’s bagel makin’ time!”

In light of our brand new whole food challenge, as posted Monday, Tuesday became bagel making day. I haven’t made bagels in over a year, so it *was* something of a challenge to bake instead of wandering down to the local bagel shop; more than one ingredient, dontcha know.

fresh farm eggs

4 fresh farm eggs

Out came the eggs; lovely local fresh farm eggs from chickens whose butt our dog has sniffed. Yum. Butt sniffed chicken eggs, beated, and then added to the yeast (equiv of 2 packages, 1/4 cup warm water), salt (1 tbsp), sugar (1 tbsp) mixture and mixed up all loverly like.

I then poured in 2 cups of potato water. You know, the water you cooked your potatoes in the night before. Or, as I most often have to do, water. Warm (potato) water.

Mix, mix, mix.

mix, mix, mix!

The flour came next.

Almost 8 cups of the fluffy stuff, one floury cup at a time. Again, mixing, mixing, mixing. I think I turned out this batch at approximately 6 cups and started kneading.

Then into the oven to proof for about an hour.

After it rose to almost double it’s size, it was time to shape the dough into bagels.

This is the fun part. It’s also the messy part. For me, at least.

I separated the dough into approximately 32 pieces.

shaping the bagels

Well, I didn’t really.

I know from past makings how to separate the dough so that I will end up with approximately 32 bagels when all is said and done. I actually shape by baking sheet, due to space limitations.

I rolled the pieces into little balls, then viciously poked a hole in the centre and shaped, then dropped them onto a greased baking sheet.

While leaving these shaped bagels to rise for about 15 more minutes, I brought the dreaded large pot of sugared water to boil.


Boil, then bake.

boil them there bagels!

The bagels were dropped, one at a time, into the boiling pot, and left to cook for 3 minutes, flipped once.

ready to bake!

After the boiling of the bagels, I pulled them out and laid the bagels back on their greased baking sheet.

It would be about now that I should have brushed the tops with an egg white/water mixtures, or even sesame seeds,  but I didn’t this time. I have no idea why. Laziness, I guess.

Into the oven they went; preheated to 425. I baked these puppies for about 25 minutes, until I noticed the tops turning brown.

Out they came.

ready to eat!

Into a bowl.

Into our mouths!