Monday, August 29, 2016

Blissful Cherry Recipes with @cheribundi

This Summer, the temperatures have risen to record high numbers. Even though the season is winding down (I hate saying that!), it's still plenty warm, and we all need to keep well hydrated regardless of the weather! These delicious and nutritious Cheribundi Tart Cherry Juice recipes definitely make hydration a breeze - and a flavour-packed one at that. Cheribundi’s refreshing taste, and fun red color is a perfect way to drink in concentrated antioxidants, vitamins and other nutrients while making almost everything you add it to Instagram-beautiful.

More then 150 pro and college sports teams use Cheribundi for its health benefits too, and tart cherry juice certainly has its fair share of them. These include anti-inflammation and pain relief - something that my family (including avid gardeners, gym buffs and arthritis sufferers) definitely need on a daily basis. Below are a few of Cheribundi's favourite recipes to try out for yourself!



Cheri Pop
Who doesn’t love an ice cold Popsicle on a blazing summer afternoon. This snack is great for a day of hanging out in the pool, or after long day at the park. So simple, so delicious, two ingredient Popsicle.
32oz Cheribundi tart cherry juice (or any of your favorite Cheribundi variations)
1 popsicle mold
  1. Take delicious Cheribundi juice and pour the 32oz bottle into your popsicle mold. (If the mold doesn’t come with it’s own handles, add 1 popsicle stick into the mold.) 
  2. Put the mold in the freezer until solid. 
  3. Remove the popsicles from the mold, and you have yourself a super simple frozen treat to keep you cool this summer.



Chillin' Cheri Snowcone
Break out that electric ice shaver you haven't used since your last kid turned 5, and turn down summer's heat wave with frosty fresh-pressed tart cherry juice snow cones.
Electric ice shaver
8 oz Cheribundi Tart Cherry Juice
Ice
  1. Shave ice into a cone cup, and then pour delicious Cheribundi Tart Cherry Juice over the top.
  • You can also pour Cheribundi into ice cube trays and shave the frozen tart red juice right into the cones for a simple, delicious, healthy treat that's ready in mere seconds!

Mom’s Cheri Treat
Even moms need a break from the heat this summer. This icy cold treat with a little kick is the perfect solution.
4 oz dry limeade mix
1 Tbsp. lime juice
4 cups cold water
2 cups of Cheribundi tart cherry juice
1 cup tequila
3/4 cup triple sec
  1. Mix all ingredients into a large pitcher, and stir to combine. 
  2. Pour into plastic cups with lids and cap. 
  3. Freeze for up to 5 hours. Remove when ready to drink!

Thanks again to the folks at Cheribundi. Not only did they share an amazing, delicious and healthy treat  with me, but their customer service staff are beyond wonderful! They went above and beyond to make sure I received my package (even when UPS didn't want to play ball) and followed up to make sure everything was A-OK! I'm looking forward to seeing their products in my local stores in the GTA.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Herbed Salsa #SundaySupper

Every year when I plant my garden I have four "big things" in mind: roasted beets (and their versatility both sweet and savoury), carrot cake, lemon balm chicken and salsa. I have always loved the chunky, spicy condiment, and I totally credit (or blame) my parents for crafting my iron stomach for peppery heat - whether fresh or dried, chilies are really the only peppers I like! 

This year I really got my garden aligned with salsa-making.    

Herbed Salsa

The goodness of fresh cilantro, garlic, lemon balm and lime finds a home with roasted peppers, tomatoes, Egyptian onion and a good hit of lime all came together in a "Summer Saturday" marriage of flavours. A bite of this chunky, spicy dip is full of the brightness of the season, and works even if your tomatoes died out in the drought or fell victim to blossom-end rot this year (had my fair share of both)... a can of salt-free diced tomatoes makes an admirable stand-in for the fresh ones, and if you don't like the "edge" of tomato skin in your salsa, opening a can gets you out of the blanch-peel boat too. Personally, I go canned unless my tomatoes are practically bleeding their juicy sweetness, in which case I make sure to use at least double the amount - I know I'll eat half!


Cilantro,  garlic, lemon balm and lime... any guesses?
Mmm, herby!


As foodies, we have the natural instinct to stretch out the goodness of the season as far as we can. We do this by finding the best ways to preserve the harvest. Our #SundaySupper team is celebrating this tradition this week! Check out all our offerings below:

Condiments
 
Main dishes

 
Sides

 
Snacks

 
Dessert

 
Beverage

Sunday Supper Movement

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Pasta-touille

My sister, Mom and I have somewhat of an inside joke when it comes to ratatouille. Every Summer when our three tomato and two zucchini plants in the backyard started their overproduction, us kids would dutifully go out and pick to our heart's content, eating our weight in cherry tomatoes and comparing the length (and width) of our zucchinis (insert NSFW joke here). Like most kids, the cherry tomatoes were always an easy sell veggie-wise, but before I really became as much of a veggie-addict as I am today, zucchini, eggplant and peppers wrinkled my nose. Not so with Mom. She'd pick out a big eggplant or two from the store on a "harvest weekend" and cook a big ol' pot of ratatouille, eating it all week on (and in) everything, often convincing my dad to do the same. However, the sudden influx of vegetation challenged the digestion of my parents slightly, leading to us re-naming the dish "rataTOOTy". Yes, it was (is?) hilarious, especially to a 9 year old at the dinner table.

Pasta-touille

That said, I'm now a proud member of the "rat pack", and when our garden's zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes and peppers start producing in sync you can bet various versions of the dish find their way into our weekly meals. I was looking for a way to make ratatouille more than a simple vegetable side dish without compromising the textures and flavours of the original, making it something to serve for dinner as opposed to with dinner. Inspiration struck when we were organizing photo albums and found a picture of mom with a bowl of ratatouille and a small scoop of KD (life with kids!). I started playing around with the idea of baking noodles and the veggie medley together in a casserole, and as I cooked, I added more and more goodies from the pantry, fridge and freezer. What I wound up with was a beautiful (if I do say so myself), hearty, healthy "pasta-touille". Not only did it contain TONS of the standard vegetables, but it had lentils, goat cheese, fresh Mozzarella and a teeny bit of skinless chicken breast too.

Since I was using pasta as an ingredient (and a surprisingly tasty potato-based one at that), I decided to add a second "noodle", spiralizing the zucchini. The whole medley bakes up into a delicious, full-flavoured dish that also freezes well - good thing too, because it made a ton!

Do you add extra ingredients that you have on hand as you go to a recipe, even if they're not called for? How do you like to eat summer veggies?

Shared with Gluten Free Fridays 

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Blueberry Beet Butter - Toast Topper #73

Every Summer it seems like I make a few standard items to can for the Winter months - whether it's for us to enjoy here at home or to give away during the holidays, a jar of something delicious always seems to warm the heart and be appreciated! A few of the recipes I riff on every year are chutney (my favourite being this Moroccan Tomato one), mincemeat (like this Downton Abbey "mockycat"), some sort of pasta sauce and - our current favourite Toast Topper - blueberry butter. The gloriously thick, sweet-tart spread is one of those that everybody loves - the eaters because it's delicious, the cooks because it's drop dead easy to make.

Blueberry Beet Butter

In fact, the (original) recipe is essentially three ingredients - blueberries, apples and sugar. After that, the possibilities are more or less endless! The first time I made it (way back in Toast Topper #2!), I used vanilla sugar, allspice and nutmeg. by the time Toast Topper #32 came about, I was tossing in lemon zest and pure pomegranate juice. This time around I took the recipe down a whole other road - adding a glug of red wine, some date syrup, and a garden fresh, dark red beet. 

Yes, a beet. I love the root veggie in pretty much any and every form, and already know how well it works in sweet things (brownies, anyone?), adding that subtle earthy note to the sugar and berry flavours. It is, as I said, subtle - you're not going to bite into your English muffin and go "yum, I'm eating borscht for breakfast". Rather, you're likely going to go on the hunt for some natural peanut butter and make yourself a grown up PB&J. Who says we have to grow up?

Shared with Gluten Free Fridays 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Spiralized Sunomono

It's been a while since I broke out my Spiralizer - during the colder months, the lack of economical, "spiralize-able" veggies drops significantly, leaving not much around but carrots, potatoes and beets. I'm not sure if it's my model or not (I do have a fairly high-end one, though not the top of the tier) but the harder roots basically "shred" more than "twirl" in the machine, and make cleaning it a royal pain. Therefore, once the cucumber, zucchini and even apples fade away from their place as "peak" produce, so does the machine.

Spiralized Sunomono

However, at this moment, we have lots of Summer squash options coming in from the garden. Not only do we have our usual crops of zucchini, but there's some yellow squash and my long-awaited cucumbers as well. While I originally put in the cucumbers for pickling, the latest burst of rain and hot, humid weather acted like a natural steroid for my plants. By the time I got back out into the (somewhat dried-off) garden, I found two baby cucumbers that had been decimated by the storm and a single, rather large specimen that would not be fitting into any pickle jar soon! Luckily, I had a different use for it in mind - one of my favourite Japanese salads, called sunomono, is essentially a sweet-sour-salty pickled cucumber salad topped with sesame seeds. A breeze to whip up with the Spiralizer, it was also beautiful done that way, and if you let the cucumber "drain" a little on tea towels before assembling it holds quite well. In fact, drained enough, it gets better as it sits - just add the seed garnish at the last minute and you have a light and refreshing, vegan cucumber salad perfect for Summer get togethers (or solitary noshing)!

Shared with Gluten Free Fridays