Posts Tagged ‘orange’

I don’t know about you, but for me there are very few things that beat waking up to the smell of muffins baking in the oven. Now that I live alone, I have to make-do with waking up early enough to make them before it can be enjoyed, but it’s still worthwhile, especially with such an easy, delicious recipe as this one. I can pop it in the oven, have a quick shower, and have delicious hot muffins when I’m done.

I came across the recipe on the back of the package of 10 Grain Bob’s Red Mill cereal, and have spruced it up to my taste. I’ve made it with both 10-grain and 7-grain mixes from Bob’s Red Mill, which I often have as hot cereal as well. I hope you enjoy, and I really hope you will surprise a loved-one with them one day!


Ingredients: makes 12 muffins 
-1 1/4 cups sour milk/buttermilk (just add 1-2 tsp lemon juice or vinegar to milk, it will go sour!)
-1 cup 10 grain breakfast cereal (or 7 grain), I use Bob’s Red Mill (that’s where the recipe comes from)

-1/3 cup butter, room temperature (original recipe calls for margarine, so I’m sure it works well too)
-1/2 cup sugar
-1 large egg

-1 cup unbleached white flour
-1/2 tsp salt
-1 tsp baking powder
-1 tsp baking soda

-1/2 cup dried cranberries (I like to use the dehydrated kind that is unsweetened, but I’m sure craisins are delicious too)
-zest from 1 orange or 2 clementines
-1/2 cup pecans (optional)
-12 muffin tin liners


Put milk and 10-grain cereal in a bowl and stir. Let stand while you prep the rest. Preheat oven to 400F. Line each muffin pan with muffin liners (this will help a lot!).

Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Once creamed, add the egg. Mix well, then add the orange zest. In another bowl, mix the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.

Add dry ingredients and milk/10 grain cereal mix to the big bowl, and stir well. Add the cranberries and pecans.

Pour into a muffin tin either lined with muffin paper (my preference with these muffins as they are a bit sticky) or greased and floured.

Bake for 15-17 minutes, then remove from the muffin tin onto a cooling rack and enjoy warm!


PS I can’t believe Catherine and I have been adding to this blog for 4 years today! That’s a lot of recipes 🙂

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A year and a half ago I was browsing through my mother’s books in her living room and I came to “The Boreal Gourmet – adventures in northern cooking”. It caught my eye, and I was soon going through it, savouring the stories and their accompanying recipes. The book is written by a woman who grew up in Toronto, was deeply influenced by her mother’s delicious cooking, spent time in Greece learning to cook traditional Greek food, and who finally ended up in the Yukon Territories cooking up a storm.

When my mother came in and found me reading the book she was very disappointed – somehow I’d managed to pick through her entire book collection to land on the ONE book I was not supposed to see – it was intended as a birthday present later that year for me. I quickly put it away and basically forgot its existence until my birthday a few months later.

Alexandra Falls gorge covered in 1.25m of snow!

Soon after I was given the book, though, I stepped into an adventure taking me to Gambia, and my exploration of the recipes in the book was postponed until this year when I have somehow managed to walk myself right into the Northern refrigerator. There is over a meter snow on the ground, the boreal forest is scraggly at best, and I live on the very Northern end of the Canadian Railway in the Northwest Territories. G. and I brought one cookbook with us: “The Boreal Gourmet”, and we’ve had a great time taking a crack at many recipes already.

Spirited cranberry sauce is great with everything from cheesecake to pancakes to meats… and probably many other things I have yet to try!

We’ve got a large mound of buffalo in the freezer, along with several whitefish fillets, and 10 cups of rosehips we’ve planned to transform into preserves. What fun! All these ingredients come from the land around us. I was hoping to harvest cranberries to make this sauce but the snow came unexpectedly fast, and so I was forced to buy a bag of fresh ones at the store (I was lucky enough to find some!).


2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries

3 Tbsp sugar

2 tsp raw honey (I used wild honey from Gambia with a smoky flavour since that’s how they collect it by smoking the bees out!)

Juice and rind of two oranges

2 Tbsp rum


Put all ingredients into a pot, and add a Tbsp of water if the liquids are too low to get a simmer going. Simmer covered for 20 minutes, until thick. Use a fork to mix it up and puree the cranberries a bit.

Serve with roast meat or turkey, or with cheesecake (as I will post soon!)


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Turkey dinner just isn’t turkey without the cranberry sauce.   It adds pizazz to turkey and stuffing, not to mention leftover turkey sandwiches.  And who doesn’t love how the ruby-coloured sauce dazzles on your plate?   A well-kept secret is that cranberry sauce could not be easier to make.

As a kid, there was always two types of cranberry sauce on the table: pure cranberries and cranberry orange.  I have always had a slight preference for the orange infused cranberry sauce.  I love how the citrus undertones complement the tart cranberries.  As the sauce cools, it thickens beautifully.  The sauce can be made two or three days in advance and keeps well in the fridge for a week or two.

I whipped up a batch Saturday for Thanksgiving dinner and have been relishing it on hot turkey sandwiches since!

Cranberry Sauce

(about 2 cups of cranberry sauce)


1 cup water (if you desire a more intense orange flavour, substitute the juice from the orange for some water)

1 1/4 cup sugar

340 g package of fresh cranberries (12 ounces)

Rind from one orange


Boil the water and sugar together to form a simple syrup.  Add the cranberries and zest in the orange rind, and allow the sauce to return to a boil.  Simmer for 5-10 minutes, or  until the cranberries have burst and become soft and the sauce is slightly thickened.  Taste and adjust for sweetness and orange flavour intensity.  Allow to chill fully before serving.

Bon appetit!

– Catherine

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It’s that time again. Packing boxes. Giving stuff I’ve accumulated away. Thinking of how lucky we’ve been to live in such a lovely home for the past 3 years.

Thinking it’s even more crazy that I’m not even sure where I’m going to be in the future. It’s kind of fun; kind of scary at the same time.

I’ve been emptying the fridge and freezer this past week, just like Catherine. That has meant revisiting many a chili, chickpea stew, and soup that I have made since the winter began. I realized that even though frozen left-overs are convenient, I really prefer cooking meals fresh every day. The convenience of frozen left-overs removes one of my favourite things to do. But they are handy sometimes, I’ll admit, just not when I actually have time to cook!

So to compensate for all these left-overs, I have been craving fresh, crisp vegetables with a lot of flavour. Like crazy. So I made this salad, which suited me so well I’m going to make it over again today I think.

Ingredients – salad for 4


-1 bunch watercress, washed and trimmed
-1 ripe orange, segments cut into 3-4 pieces each
-1 tbsp fine slices of purple onion or shallot
-1/2 cup pecans
-1.5 Tbsp (approximately) white sugar
-generous knob of butter


-1 Tbsp grain mustard
-1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
-3 tbsp olive oil
-salt and pepper to taste


Wash the watercress. In a frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat until bubbly. Sprinkle the sugar and pecans in, and stir. Reduce heat and let them turn golden for 10 or so minutes, stirring occasionally.

Make the dressing in the bottom of the salad bowl by first mixing the mustard and vinegar well together, and then adding the oil one spoonful at a time and stirring vigorously. Place the watercress in, along with the oranges, onion slices, and pecans. Toss it all together and serve immediately!


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