Roast Cherry Dark Chocolate Brownie Sundaes

Roast Cherry Dark Chocolate Brownie Sundae
The cherry season has been nice and long and they are still plentiful and cheap which is good because I recently came across the idea of using them to make roast cherry brownies on Foodie Bride which I just had to try! I always enjoy roasting things because it tends to concentrate and strengthen their flavour and I really liked the sound of hitting the little nuggets of concentrated cherry flavour deep under the surface of chocolate brownies!

Blueberry Baked French Toast with Amaretti Crumble and Blueberry Maple Syrup

Blueberry Baked French Toast with Amaretti Crumble and Blueberry Maple Syrup

It seems that I have been on a bit of streak with sweet breakfasts lately which is unusual for me but with all of the amazing fruits and berries available these days it has been hard to resist! French toast is a great way to do breakfasts on the weekend and although I normally make it on the stove top, it is also possible to bake it in the oven. For a baked French toast the bread is placed in a baking dish and topped with the egg and milk custard mixture to soak over night and then you simply bake it in the morning making it even easier to make than the stovetop version! In the summer it is so easy to add some fruit or berries to your French toast and make it even better and that is just what I did last weekend when I made this baked blueberry french toast with a few additions to kick it up a notch!

Tomato Tatin

Slow Roasted Tomato Tatin

One of my favourite things about summer is all of the fresh local produce at the farmers market, so I tend to head down every Saturday morning. The market starts out slowly in the spring, with asparagus and then strawberries. By July, things pick up, with a flurry of new things every week.

Strawberry Greek Yogurt Banana Bread

Greek Yogurt Strawberry Banana Bread

During the summer I tend to make a lot of quick breads and that is because there are so many fruits and vegetables that are available that make really good quick breads. One of my favourite summer quick breads has to be the strawberry sour cream bread which I tend to make pretty much every year! This year I was thinking that I might try lightening the recipe up a bit and the first step was to use some Greek yogurt, which is now everywhere in the grocery stores, instead of the sour cream. Next up was to try to reduce or eliminate the butter or oil and that was done by adding three over ripe bananas in addition to the yogurt to keep things nice and moist. Another great way to make quick breads a bit healthier is to use some whole wheat flour in place of regular flour and I normally replace about half of the flour with the whole wheat flour. In the end this Greek yogurt strawberry bread turned out just as good as the original sour cream version and even with the changes it was nice and moist and stayed that way for a few days before it was all gone. What a great way to enjoy a few summer breakfasts!

Pineapple and Shrimp Fried Quinoa

Pineapple and Shrimp Fried Quinoa
Fried rice is one of those super quick and easy comfort food dishes that is always satisfying and I recently found myself wondering how quinoa would do in a fried rice dish. There are a lot of great fried rice dishes out there and my favourite has to be a Thai style pineapple and shrimp fried rice which is packed with amazing flavours and it seemed like the perfect candidate to be made with quinoa! I mean, you really cannot go wrong tossing some juicy, sweet and tangy pineapple along with succulent shrimp in some light and fluffy fried quinoa!

Black Forest Pancakes

Black Forest Pancakes

I am not really all that big on sweets but if you were to ask me what kind of cake that I wanted for a special occasion, I would probably say a Black Forest cake. A Black Forest cake is a German cake that is make with layers of chocolate cake soaked in a cherry liqueur, cherries and whipped cream and it is then coated in even more whipped cream maraschino cherries, and chocolate shavings. I have had the idea of doing a breakfast version of a Black Forest cake in the form of Black Forest pancakes on my mind for a while now and now that fresh cherries are in season it was the perfect time to make them! I started things off by making some really easy chocolate pancakes and then I added a simple cherry sauce along with some whipped cream to create the layers of the Black Forest pancakes. It is always fun to have dessert for breakfast and these Black Forest pancakes with the amazing chocolate and cherry flavour combo are a decadently good way to go!

Avocado Breakfast Pizza with Fried Egg

Avocado Breakfast Pizza with Fried Egg
This week I was on an avocado bender and I shared some tasty new avocado recipes and reminisced about some of my favourites that I have already written about and I realized that I had not mentioned one of my absolute favourite ways to enjoy avocados and possibly the simplest way, on toast for breakfast. It is so simple with just mashed avocado that is seasoned with a bit of salt, fresh ground pepper and perhaps a bit of lime juice and served on toast and yet it is so good! I recently came across the idea of a breakfast pizza that had an egg in the middle and I thought, wouldn't it be nice to do a pizza version of avocado on toast except instead of toast use a pita and top it with a fried egg and possibly other toppings? As soon as I had the idea, I knew that I would have to try it and it turned out wonderfully well! I have been enjoying different variations of this avocado breakfast pita pizza all week trying different toppings like bacon or crumbled queso fresco in addition to the already amazing 'plain' version. One morning when I had a bit more energy I even went so far as to try a guacamole breakfast pizza with fried egg which was also really really good!

Roasted Strawberry Shortcake Shakes

Roasted Strawberry Shortcake Shake

When I made the strawberry shortcakes earlier in the week I made sure to make a double batch of the shortcake so that I would have some leftovers to use in something else. I came across the idea for roasted strawberry shortcakes on Spoon Fork Bacon not too long ago and I really liked the sound of using the classic flavours of strawberry shortcake in a cool and refreshing drink that would be perfect on a hot summer day. This drink starts out with your basic milkshake ingredients including the milk and the ice cream and then it moves on to add some strawberries and actual shortcake! Yep, you heard me right, big chunks of shortcake are added to the shake and then it is pureed in the food processor leaving tiny bits of cake in your shake! The next part that really makes this treat is that the strawberries are roasted first to concentrate and bring out all of their flavour just packing the shake with strawberry goodness! Right now I am going to enjoy this really cool shake but up next, I think it is going to have to be roasted strawberry shortcake ice cream!

Breakfast Chorizo Quesadilla Topped with a Fried Egg

Breakfast Chorizo Quesadilla Topped with a Fried Egg
I am a big fan of quesadillas! I mean what's not to like? They are essentially grilled cheese sandwiches, which I am totally obsessed with, that use tortillas instead of bread. I had not really thought about serving quesadillas for breakfast so when I came across the idea for sausage breakfast quesadillas on Noble Pig I just had to try them! I decided to go with fresh spicy Mexican style chorizo sausages for the meat and I rounded the quesadillas off with some slice jalapeno, green onions and cilantro to provide a small foil for all of the melted cheesy goodness. Speaking of cheese, I went with a combination of cheddar and jack and I used plenty of it! After grilling the quesadillas I sliced them and then served them topped with an egg fried in the leftover grease from the chorizo along with some cool and creamy diced avocado, sour cream and more ciantro. If only I could have these quesadillas every morning for breakfast!

Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake
The strawberries at the grocery stores are starting to dwindle and the farmers market is starting to fill up with other local, in season berries and fruits but I still want to get a few more strawberry recipes in. I really could not let strawberry season pass me by without making strawberry shortcake at least once, I mean it is pretty much the quintessential strawberry dish and it just just screams happy summer days! Luckily strawberry shortcake is super easy to make even if you are making the shortcake from scratch! It is just as easy as mixing the five ingredients in the shortcake dough, forming it into your favourite shapes, baking it for 15 minutes and topping it with whipped cream and sliced fresh, ripe strawberries. All said and done and you could be enjoying a strawberry induced bliss on pillowy clouds of light and fluffy shortcake in less than 30 minutes!

Spicy Peanut Chicken Grilled Cheese Sandwich (aka The Chicken Satay Melt)

Spicy Peanut Chicken Grilled Cheese Sandwich

I cannot believe that it has been over two months since I last shared a new grilled cheese recipe with you! I was beginning to feel like I had been going through grilled cheese withdrawal and including the guacamole grilled cheese in the avocado roundup yesterday brought it all flooding in! I am a huge fan of Thai style peanut sauces and I had been wanting to use some in a grilled cheese sandwich for a long time now! The initial idea for the sandwich was inspired by chicken satay which is commonly served with a peanut sauce for dipping and although it sounded really good, I couldn't shake the feeling that there was something missing. The thing that was missing was of course cool and creamy avocado which really brings this grilled cheese home! The chicken satay melt is finished off with some fresh cilantro and sriracha hot sauce because I like it spicy! I have to say that this spicy peanut chicken grilled cheese sandwich exceeded all of my expectations and it has quickly rocketed to the upper levels in my list of all time favourite grilled cheese sandwiches! I can't wait to make another!

10 Amazing Things to do with Avocados

10 Amazing Avocado Recipes

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Over the last little while I have done a few tasty new recipes with avocados and the last one reminded me of just how much I enjoy them! Looking back over the all of the avocados recipes that I have posted I realized that there are more than 50 of them and that meant that it was time to roundup some of my favourites! It certainly was not difficult finding 10 recipes with avocados, on the contrary, it was more difficult trimming the list down to just 10 and here they are!

Creamy Avocado/Guacamole Egg Salad Sandwich

Guacamole Egg Salad Sandwich

While I was thinking about the creamy avocado dressing a few weeks ago the combination of avocados and mayonnaise got me to thinking about other things that it could be used in and the first thing that came to mind was an egg salad sandwich. Egg salads are normally made by mixing hard boiled eggs with mayonnaise to give it an addictively creamy nature and I figured that adding mashed up avocados could only make things better! Although using more traditional egg salad flavours sounded good, I could not resist once again going with the flavours of guacamole with lime juice and cilantro to brighten things up and the jalapeno chilies to add a hint of spicy heat. Adding the avocados to an egg salad sandwich like this was even more amazing than I thought it would be and I am now completely smitten with these sandwiches!

Bánh Xèo (Savoury Vietnamese Crepes Stuffed with Shrimp and Mushrooms)

Bánh Xèo
With summer here fresh herbs are more readily available and that means that it was time for me to try making bánh xèo. Bánh xèo are savoury Vietnamese crepes that are stuffed with various fillings and served wrapped in lettuce leaves along with plenty of fresh herbs such as mint, cilantro, and Thai basil. The name bánh xèo translates to sizzling cake and this is because the crepes are cooked at a higher temperature and sizzle when the batter hits the pan. Cooking the crepes this way gives them a slightly crispy edge. Despite the fact that these crepes look like an omelette they are actually not made with eggs but rather a rice batter where the yellow colour comes from turmeric powder. I decided to keep my bánh xèo on the lighter side and I stuffed them with some quickly sauteed shrimp and shiitake mushrooms along with a healthy helping of bean sprouts and I served them with lettuce, mint, cilantro, basil and a tasty nuoc cham for dipping.

Buffalo Chicken Sushi

Buffalo Chicken Sushi

Last week I went out for sushi and that got me thinking about making sushi at home. Although I am still a bit leery about making actual sushi at home with raw fish, that does not stop me from having a bit of fun with sushi in the form of this buffalo chicken sushi! I am totally addicted to buffalo chicken in all forms and when I came across the recipe for buffalo chicken sushi on Choosy Beggars I immediately bookmarked it to try later! This sushi contains all of the flavours of buffalo chicken wings including the buffalo chicken, blue cheese, carrots and celery all rolled up in rice and nori. Sushi is actually pretty easy to make at home and this tasty buffalo chicken sushi is definitely worth the effort! You can serve this buffalo chicken sushi with soy sauce, hot sauce or even blue cheese dressing for your dipping pleasure and I served it with a drizzle of mayo and hot sauce.

Balsamic Strawberry and Chicken Pizza with Sweet Onions and Smoked Bacon

Strawberry Balsamic Pizza with Chicken, Sweet Onion and Smoked Bacon

We are right in the middle of strawberry season here and it was about time that I did something with them other than simply snacking on them by the handful. For my first strawberry recipe I wanted to try something a little different in the form of a savoury strawberry pizza! I first came across the recipe for this strawberry pizza on The Cafe Sucre Farine last year and I had been saving it to make during the local strawberry season. This strawberry pizza is very alluring with its beautiful combination of flavour and balance of sweet, salty, tangy and spicy elements!