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Tag Archives: sundried tomatoes

A New Take on an Old Favourite

Back on the Christmas holidays, we gave you all quite a few hummus posts, and we promised that we would stop posting hummus after hummus recipe and bring back some variety! Of course, we did just that, having posted about waffles, chicken pot pies, a delicious salad, and a quick and easy dessert, but you couldn’t expect us not to eventually post another hummus recipe, could you? After all, hummus is one of our favourite foods, and this recipe is too good not to share! In our defense, this hummus is different from the ones we’ve posted in the not-to-distant past. Why? Because it’s made of black beans!

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Essentially a black bean version of our sundried tomato hummus, except this one has a special addition that really makes it sing!

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Make that two special ingredients: Salsa and Lime Juice! They both add that extra bit of zing (and spice!) that gives this hummus it’s kick. Of course, if you have a palate that prefers foods on the milder side, you can use a mild salsa. We, of course, like it hot! 😉

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So if you, like ourselves, are die-hard hummus lovers, but would like to change it up and add some variety to your routine, try this black bean hummus! We promise it won’t let you down, or leave you  missing your regular chickpea hummus, either.

Sundried Tomato Black Bean Hummus

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Time: 10-15min
Makes: 2 cups

Ingredients:

2 c. black beans (if using canned, rinsed and drained!)
1/4 c. sundried tomatoes in oil, drained (reserve the oil!)
scant 1/4 c. sundried tomato oil
1/8 c. lemon juice
1/8 c. lime juice
1/4 c. tahini
2 tbsp your favourite salsa
2-3 Tbsp hot pepper flakes (optional)
salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Put all ingredients into food processor and blend until completely smooth.

~twosaucysisters

Have you ever tried a hummus made from a different bean other than chickpeas before? What’s the most interesting hummus you’ve ever made? We love experimenting with different types of beans when it comes to hummus. Probably our two most interesting would be our Beet Bean Dip and our Peanut Thai hummus.

Restaurant Review + a Re-make

Back on our Holiday Recap post, we mentioned going out to Pepperwood Bistro in Burlington, Ontario for a fare-well dinner for our cousin Geoff/us going back to school the next day.

In that post, we didn’t go into extensive detail about the restaurant because it was so good that we felt it deserved it’s own spot on the blog. Our first impression of the restaurant was how nice the outside was. I mean just look at that picture! It would be a wonderful patio for lunch or dinner on a warm day. Of course, it was anything but warm, so we headed on inside. Well, if the interior of the place was going to be any indication of the food we would be eating, we knew we were in for a treat! It was so classy and sophisticated, from the dark hard wood interior to the funky paintings on the wall – so fabulous!

And now to the important part – the food. Many restaurants serve you bread and butter before your meal. Some of the more up-scale or Italian ones serve you olive oil and balsamic vinegar and some kind of crusty bread. Some offer you herbed or flavoured butter. Not at Pepperwood, no. At Pepperwood, they serve you thin slices of crusty multi-grain french bread with hummus sitting in olive oil and balsamic vinegar. We could have left right then and been satisfied, happy customers, because you already know of our love for hummus.

Of course, we didn’t leave. 😉

The menu was not overly extensive, which in our opinion is a good indication of quality food. (quality>quantity people!) In our past experiences, places with shorter menus take more time and care into the planning and preparation of each menu item. Not to mention they are usually somewhat seasonal and will have some different options every time you go! Everything on the menu sounded so delicious, it was hard to choose! In all honesty, we were there with a large group of people (9 to be exact), and we would have been happy with any of the items each of our family members ordered. The food is that good. 

Jordan ordered the Genovese Pizza:

Prosciutto, Genoa salami, marinated artichokes,
roast garlic, pickled onions, mozzarella, tomato sauce

Dad and Aunt Dianne ordered one of the specials, a pasta dish. All we can remember (other than it being delicious- we sampled, it was awesome) is that it had large chunks of lobster, asparagus, mushrooms, and cooked cherry tomatoes in some kind of white sauce. Di-vine!

Brendan had the meat special of the day, a chicken stuffed with goat cheese and spinach which came with vegetables and another side which we can’t remember. Whatever it was, Brendan gave it two thumbs up!

Geoff ordered the Steak Frites:

…Hand cut and specially aged Reserve
Angus New York striploin steak with fresh‐cut Yukon Gold
frites, pickled lemon aïoli, pink peppercorn and red wine
sauce “au poivre”

Aunt Dianne’s sister ordered the Ravioli:

Artisan butternut squash stuffed ravioli, pancetta
and baby spinach cream sauce, Marsala wine, sautéed sweet
bell pepper. – Butternut squash, people! You can’t go wrong!

Ourselves and our Mom all ordered the same thing, the Gravlax Salad!

Sweet shaved fennel, baby arugula, mustard and pink
peppercorn emulsion, oven dried tomato, fresh dill, orange and gin‐
cured Bay‐of‐Fundy salmon gravlax.

Oh.My.Word. This salad was to die for! For those of you who don’t know, gravlax is smoked salmon encrusted with herbs. We had never tried it before, but it is now one of our favourite foods! You know how we love our smoked salmon. Don’t ask us where the name “Gravlax” came from, we don’t know! Personally, we think it sounds like a combination of Gravol and Exlax – not at all appetizing and certainly not appropriate for eating, but trust us, it’s delicious!

A few desserts were ordered – apple crumble with cinnamon ice cream (for dad), and the goat cheese cheesecake. Can you say decadent? Five stars, folks, five stars!

But enough about cheesecake, back to the salad! (#saidnooneever)

Seriously though, this salad changed our lives! So much so, that we vowed to remake it. Unfortunately, gravlax is way out of our student budget, so we had to improvise a little.

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Smoky herb-crusted salmon salad with sundried tomatoes, shaved fennel and fresh dill in a dijon cracked-pepper emulsion. We feel very hoity-toity writing that. Excuse us while we observe expensive art at the gallery while we wait for Froufrou to be finished her daily grooming at the pet salon…

Just kidding.

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Can we just go ahead and pat ourselves on the back for this one? Because we nailed it – this salad brought back every delicious memory of Pepperwood Bistro with each bite!

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So if you’re ever in Burlington, we highly recommend you go to Pepperwood Bistro. If you live no where near Burlington, we  highly recommend you make this salad. Bon appetite!

Herb-crusted Salmon Salad

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Prep time: 10 min + marinating time
Cook time: 10-12 min
Serves: 2

Ingredients:

For the Salmon:

2 frozen boneless, skinless salmon fillets, thawed
2 Tbsp liquid+enough water to submerge each filet
1 Tbsp Rosemary
1 Tbsp Thyme
1/4 tsp salt
black pepper

For the Salad:

2 c. spinach, packed
1 c. arugula
3/4 c. fresh dill, roughly chopped
1/2 c. shaved fennel
4 sundried tomatoes packed in oil, blotted dry and sliced
5 tsbp lemon dijon emulsion (recipe below)
optional: goat cheese

Directions:

Mix liquid smoke with water in a container, submerge salmon in this mixture and allow it to soak for at least 30 minutes in the fridge.

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Mix rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper in a wide bowl.  Press salmon fillets into this mixture, making sure both sides are covered with herbs.

Heat a drop of oil on a pan over medium-high heat.  When the oil is hot, place salmon on the pan and cook just until the outsides are slightly blackened (about 2 minutes on each side) The goal here isn’t to cook the fish all the way through, just to blacken the outside.

Place the fillets on a tray and bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes, or until cooked through.

For the Salad:  Mix all ingredients except for the dressing in a large bowl.  Pour in the dressing and toss the salad until everything is evenly coated.  Divide amoung 2 plates and top with salmon and goat cheese (if using).

Lemon-Dijon Emulsion

1/4 c. lemon juice
1/2 tbsp dijon mustard
1/2 tbsp yellow mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp black pepper
pinch of salt
1/3 c olive oil

Place all ingredients except olive oil in a blender, food processor or spice grinder and blend until smooth.  With the motor running, slowly pour in the olive oil and blend until fully combined.

~twosaucysisters

Have you ever been to a restaurant and had a meal so good you just had to recreate it at home?  What restaurants have you been to that have knocked your socks off? (We’re always looking for new places to try! 😉 )

Holiday Entertaining

Hi everybody!

We’re here to tell you today that we have not fallen off the face of the planet- we’ve just been extra busy over the past week and have had no time for blogging!  In fact, we have barely even been on our computers, which is pretty outrageous for us because ordinarily we spend quite a bit of time on them!

We have been enjoying our Christmas holidays so much over the past week spending as much time as we can with our family who have come to visit from out west and New York that we have hardly even been in the kitchen! (gasp!)

And since today’s their last full day here, we are only stopping in briefly so you don’t think we’ve abandoned you forever.

So we’d like to ask you, what do you make when you have family coming and going constantly, have no time to cook (or plan) elaborate meals, and you just need quick easy snacks/munchies that everyone c will enjoy?

Hummus!

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Obviously.

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You should all know by now that we are basically obsessed with hummus, and are constantly coming up with more ideas for new versions and flavours.  Today’s is the sun-dried tomato addition, but you can check out our recipe page for a million a few other recipes for some different variations on our favourite dip 🙂

Sun-dried Tomato Hummus

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Time: 10 min
Makes: ~2 cups

Ingredients:

2 cups cooked chickpeas
1/3 c. sun-dried tomatoes (packed in oil) blotted dry
1/4 c. oil (from the sun-dried tomato jar)
1/4 c. lemon juice
1/4 c. tahini
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4-1/2 tsp salt
1/4 c. water
pepper, to taste

Directions:

Blend all ingredients in a high-powered blender or food processor and serve with veggies, pitas, crackers, etc.

~twosaucysisters

What have you been doing over your holidays?  What are your go-to foods when you’re busy and entertaining guests?

OUA Championships Race Recap

Good morning readers!

So, we mentioned yesterday that we haven’t been posting as much because of school, but that’s only a half-truth. The other half of why you barely heard from us on the weekend is because we had our OUA championships for cross country! 🙂 OUA stands for Ontario University Athletics, which is a fancy way of saying Provincials.

This year, York University in Toronto was hosting. The race was held at the Kingbridge Centre in King City, Ontario. We left for Toronto on Friday afternoon and went straight to the course. On paper the course sounded lovely, some woods, some grass, rolling hills… fun, right? While yes the grounds were very nice, this course wasn’t! It was a 2.5km loop, and when they said “rolling hills” they really meant mostly uphill with one really big, long hill after nearly 2km of slightly more gradual uphill. There was a downhill section, but it was on a winding path in the woods, so you couldn’t really use it to pick up any speed. The flat sections were 50m at the start, 50 m at the finish, and a small section at the top of the big hill. Needless to say it left us all feeling a little bit nervous.

We went out to dinner that evening at Boston Pizza. Not an exciting. super interesting place, but they have a few tasty options. We both ended up choosing the same meal (though we were at opposite ends of the table!), which was the Mediterranean on multigrain crust. This pizza had sundried tomatoes, artichokes, spinach, portabello mushrooms, feta and a pesto drizzle.

 

We were both really pleased with our decision! It was delicious. The only thing we would have changed is cut the artichokes a little bigger, cut back on the cheese and put on more sauce. Our waitress, unfortunately, was pretty rude, but you win some you lose some, right?

Saturday morning arrived chilly and rainy.  It had rained all night, and didn’t stop once during the day, making the race course extremely soft and muddy. Essentially, it took an already difficult course and made it even harder. It was slippery, soft and hard to run on, with giant puddles everywhere! 5min into the race you were soaked, covered in mud and your toes were numb. It was a day for grinders, those who did well were those who ran tough!

 

 

 

Because only the top 7 runners from each school can compete at OUAs, the rest of our teammates were cheering from the sidelines. They are seriously the best teammates ever! They were wearing less clothes than the racers were, and were super enthusiastic! And you know what? All their cheering worked, because we won the Bronze Medal! 🙂

To celebrate after, all the athletes, parents and alumni went to Chili’s for a late lunch. Again, not a really interesting restaurant, but the food and service was good! We shared the Mushroom Jack Fajitas, which are chicken, jack cheese, green peppers and mushrooms. They were really yummy! It was nice to just have something warm in our bellies after freezing out on the race course.

Once we got back to London, we had a halloween/OUAs celebration. A couple of the girls on the team made “spooky” cupcakes, which were SO GOOD! They made regular ones and gluten-free, for our two no-gluten teammates.

 

Big kudos to Court and Sarah, they were awesome! 🙂 Every year for Halloween, our team does a group costume. Our first year we were tinker bells, last year we were Cheetahs, and this year, Gold Diggers!

 

We had a lot of fun (and were safe from any flying objects all night – thank you hard hats!)

Only one more race of the season, our National Championships, to go, hosting here in London! If you’re around and feel like watching some excellent cross country, put on some Purple and come out to the Thames Valley Golf Course on Saturday, November 10th. The girls race at 12, and the boys at 1. Go Mustangs!

For the full story from this weekend, go here.

We hope everyone had a safe, happy Halloween!

-twosaucysisters

What did you dress up as (or your kids) for Halloween this year? Did you do anything fun or exciting?