Sunday, May 25, 2008

Catching Up, Planning, and Packed Days Ahead!

I honestly cannot believe that I haven't posted anything since Thursday, and that even Thursday's post was a half-hearted attempt - without even a recipe! I'm trying to do better, honest, but the problem is that I am at a loss for material right now... simply put, I haven't made a dang thing in the past week. Instead, I've been putting my hands to use knitting a blanket for my best friend Heather, who only used to be a 10 minute walk away from me during the hazy, lazy days of highschool. Now, she's way away in Kingston, but with luck I'll have her super-soft gift ready for her by the time the cold weather hits! So that's my excuse for the lack of foodage on here, and by the looks of things, it's probably not going to be a whole lot better this summer (especially if I keep forgetting my camera everywhere I go!).

With luck, though, I'll have some fun reports and photos for everyone over the next few months, since Andrew and I are planning some very exciting events for us this summer! We actually spent most of today making some serious plans for our first-ever vacation as a couple, down to Niagara Falls, as well as setting out some dates for our customary anniversary / Andrew's birthday Blue Jays baseball game and dinner (and there will definitely be a post for this), as well as plans for our yearly jaunt to the CNE. We're even hoping to take my little sister out on a trip to Canada's Wonderland! Between all those trips and celebrations (not even counting anyone else's birthdays, Canada Day, my Chinatown trip with my dad or Father's Day!) there is pretty much no extra room for any other major projects!

The mention of Niagara Falls actually brings me to a question I had for any Canadian readers who frequently (or occasionally) shop for groceries cross-border... given my dietary restrictions (can't have caffeine, alcohol, meats, dairy, egg yolks, oils, nuts or essentially anything high in oil / fat content) what should I keep an eye out for when we hop over the border?? I know there are a lot more "fat-free / diet" foods available state-side, but if there's anything in particular I'd be glad to know of it!

I'll be sure to take my camera for the trip at any rate: so far we've planned the border crossing as well as trips to the Ripley's museum, Skywheel, MGM and Hershey's stores, Clifton Hill, Rainforest Cafe, and the Butterfly Conservatory. We're also planning a trip on the Maid of the Mist (my mom requested "drowned rat" photos of the two of us). As far as vacation nosh goes, it'll be pretty boring for any readers - sushi, subs, salads and cereal will more than likely be standard fare for us. However, if anything changes, I'll be doing some reporting afterwards!

The planning doesn't stop with the summer, either! I've even started thinking about things to make as gifts for Christmastime - 7 months away - because I have this insane craving to make (of all things) candy! I'm definitely going to do marshmallows and fudge, and I'm thinking of a sesame seed brittle of some kind too... but that's too far away to plan! My online agenda at RememberTheMilk (a very useful site, by the way) is bursting at the seams already haha.

For now, though, I'm content to do my final report on my Great Oatmeal Cookie Search. Yes, dear readers, I think I have found a recipe that I am content to offer at the bakery, albeit only on a seasonal basis, and I will even share it with you! You'll notice they are very similar to the last oatmeal cookies I made, but I played around with the spicing and the base, making them very distinctly Autumnal in nature. They're even lower in fat and higher in antioxidants than the original, due to the addition of pumpkin puree in place of some of the oil, and cranberries along with the raisins. I suppose you could use these as breakfast food, but make them bigger - the yield I'm giving is for two - to three - bite cookies. Also, these don't flatten as they bake, which I learned on the first batch and you can see in the top photo - squash 'em to the thinness you want before you put them in the oven!

Harvest Oatmeal Cookies
Makes 18
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg replacer, prepared
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tbsp maple syrup
1/2 cup Kamut flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 cups quick (not instant) oats
1/4 cup raisins, soaked and drained
1/4 cup dried cranberries, soaked and drained
  1. Preheat oven to 350F, grease 2 cookie sheets.
  2. Whisk together oil, pumpkin, sugars, egg replacer, vanilla and maple syrup.
  3. In another bowl, whisk all remaining ingredients but raisins and cranberries.
  4. Add dry ingredients to the wet mix, stirring to blend.
  5. Fold in the dried fruit.
  6. Drop spoonfuls on the prepared sheets and flatten slightly with wet fingertips.
  7. Bake 10 minutes, cool 5 minutes on sheets, then remove to a rack to cool completely.

Amount Per Serving
Calories: 113.4
Total Fat: 3.6 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 77.7 mg
Total Carbs: 19.4 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.8 g
Protein: 2.1 g


  1. Sounds like some great plans for the summer (and we do have to take advantage while it's warm in these parts!). The cookies sound yummy, too--lucky bakery customers!

  2. Got to have lunch at Parkwood as well sometime during the summer...that is if they still have the Teahouse. The rest of your summer plans sound great. Niagara Falls is a must but if this is a couples weekend head to Niagara -on -the- Lake and wine country:D


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