Kids Play Cafe

As someone who works evenings and is a stay at home mom during the day, I often find I work through the nights in order to find time to get the things I need to done and also find time to do the things I enjoy. Between all of the things that I need to do, I don’t really have a regular opportunity to work during the days. Lucky for me, I think I’ve found a way to blend playtime, work time, and a bit of momma-relax time! Continue reading

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Broccoli Quinoa Rice Casserole

delicious broccoli quinoa rice casseroleOkay, so it’s not the shortest name, but just call it delicious and comforting, because that’s what it is! I am a huge fan of creamy, comforting broccoli rice casserole, and have tried many versions of the lighter and healthier broccoli quinoa casserole but always felt like it was missing something. This version is a marriage of both versions. The added quinoa gives the dish a protein boost, which is a plus when I’m feeding my picky vegetarian toddler, but the rice, cheese, and slurry offer the creaminess that I have come to expect from this dish. Continue reading

Tofu Teriyaki

Our all-time favourite food to go out and eat as a family has to be Japanese food. While we’re crazy about sushi, we also have lots of other dishes that we love, including tofu teriyaki. Between the fish eater (Arun), the chicken eater (me), and the vegetarian (Little Bear), we’re all satisfied with tofu teriyaki. But, unfortunately, our Japanese cravings are never really satisfied. We could eat mounds of sushi one day and be yearning for more after two days. Our solution is that I often make our favourite Japanese food at home.delicious and easy tofu teriyaki

While my sushi isn’t quite restaurant quality, my tofu teriyaki is a different story. I actually prefer my tofu teriyaki to the dish that you would order in most Japanese restaurants. To start with, restaurant tofu teriyaki is typically served as large pieces of tofu, doused in teriyaki sauce, over rice with a sprinkling of vegetables. The result is a sometimes soggy mess of tofu that just tastes overly sweet. My tofu teriyaki is comprised of much smaller pieces of tofu, meaning optimum batter to tofu coverage. Also, I don’t hide a tiny bit of cabbage and carrots under my tofu, but choose to add a fresh side of vegetables to my dish. Another thing that I like about my version better is that the pieces of tofu maintain their crunch. Rather than covering the tofu with a ridiculous amount of teriyaki sauce, I lightly toss my tofu in the teriyaki sauce right before serving.

This tofu dish is easy to make and is great served with Calrose rice.  I also enjoy a beautiful green vegetable served next to this and some nori on the side. The best thing about this dish is that it is a fan favourite. Everyone in our house enjoys it and Little Bear likes my homemade tofu teriyaki way more than what we get when we order it from the restaurants.

Try it out, and I bet you’ll be snacking on the fried tofu cubes even before it gets to your plate!

tofuteriyaki

Tofu Teriyaki

Ingredients:
1 – 350 gram pack of organic tofu, medium firm
1/3 cup rice flour
1/3 cup corn starch
¼ tsp salt
freshly cracked black pepper

Canola or vegetable oil for frying

Teriyaki Sauce (adapted from Mark Bittman’s teriyaki sauce recipe):
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup water
3 tbsp honey
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tbsp corn starch

Method:

  1. Drain the tofu and cut the tofu into small ½ inch cubes.
  2. Place the rice flour, corn starch, salt and pepper into one large plate or container. Whisk well to mix together.
  3. In small batches, toss the tofu into the flour and corn starch mixture. Once finished tossing all the tofu, start over again and toss the tofu in the flour and corn starch one more time.
  4. Pour about a half centimeter of oil into the bottom of a pot and heat on med-high heat until the oil is ready for frying. Once ready, slowly and carefully drop pieces of tofu tossed in the flour and corn starch mixture into the oil.  Make sure not to just dump a bunch of the tofu in, as it is likely to stick together then. Fry until tofu is golden-brown. Remove tofu from oil when done and put on plate lined with napkins.
  5. While the tofu is cooking, make the teriyaki sauce: Combine the soy sauce, water, and honey together in a pot over medium heat.  Allow to come to a simmer and then add the minced garlic. Allow to simmer another minute. Turn off heat.  Put corn starch into a bowl and add 3 tbsp. of the heated soy sauce mixture. Whisk together well. Add the corn starch and soy sauce to the sauce on the stove. Whisk in well. As the sauce sits for a minute or two it will thicken up slightly. The sauce should be runny but not too runny.
  6. Toss the tofu in the teriyaki sauce. The sauce should just be lightly coating the tofu. Serve over Calrose rice.

tofu teriyaki

Coping with Bugs During Pregnancy

Disclaimer: This website does not provide medical advice. Remember to always consult your doctor before starting any treatment, even natural, especially when pregnant. Also consult your doctor if your symptoms persist or worsen. The information in this post is not meant as expert advice and is only my personal opinion.  This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please do not delay seeking or disregard a doctor’s advice because of anything that you read in this post.

Getting sick is never fun, and it’s even worse when you get sick and you’re pregnant. Your system is probably already feeling overwhelmed from just being pregnant (nausea, heartburn, constipation, headaches, mood swings, cramps, swelling, the list goes on!), but now your body is under attack by bugs that really don’t care how you might already be feeling. Continue reading

3 Things Thursday

Today I’m sharing some of the things that have happened in my world this week in an instalment of 3 Things Thursday, part of a weekly link up with Salma at The Write Balance, Raj at Pink Chai Living, and Nisha at Love Laugh Mirch.

I love the idea of a weekly check in or roundup, as it really allows you to reflect on what was important or exciting every week! Sometimes it feels like the week just flies by, so this is a great way to reflect while sharing.  Continue reading

Twinning: Matching Accessories for the Little Ones

what i made wednesday

I recently had a conversation with a fellow mom about how we felt about families matching. While I have nothing against a family wearing matching outfits, this particular mom absolutely loved it! I definitely enjoy coordinating for important events, especially if I know that there will be pictures taken, but we’re not big on matching.  This mom, however, had 3 kids, and it got me thinking about how adorable matching kids are! Whether you have matching twins or just siblings, I am all for it! It even reminded me of matching outfits I gave to a friend when she had her second boy.

Two little boys wearing the same outfits? Cute, right? Hmm, except…we’re having a girl!

gender reveal girl

Continue reading

Easy Indian Barbecue

It was the Victoria Day long weekend in Canada and unfortunately I spent the better part of the weekend sick…and not just pregnancy sick. Sick sick. The worst kind of sick on a super hot long weekend when you’re pregnant and really just want an Advil! Loaded with my essential oils, Manuka honey, and lemon, I battled it out most of the weekend, but unfortunately succumbed to an icky sick induced sleep for the better part of the holiday Monday. Yep, so for the first long weekend of the summer here in Canada, I slept.

Mind you I did feel better when I woke up and I finally had an appetite after not being able to eat much for the past 24 hours. And what better way to celebrate feeling slightly better, a sunny day, and Queen Victoria than an Indian barbecue?! Continue reading

Compound Butter

There are few things in life that taste as good as butter. Don’t bring me margarine…I just want beautiful, creamy, delicious butter!

Whether you enjoy butter spread over your toast or melting into your corn, there is one way to make your butter even better:

Transform your butter into compound butter!

compoundbutter

If you’ve never tried compound butter, you’re missing out.  Not only is this a way to elevate your butter, it also is a great way to save up leftover herbs while looking super fancy with minimal effort.

Compound butter is basically a combination of butter and your choice of herbs, spices, or other flavourings. Making compound butter is incredibly easy and it stores well in the fridge or even the freezer. One of my favourite things about compound butter is once I’ve added in my favourite herbs, it’s a cheap and simple way to add those flavours into my food even when those herbs are not readily available or in season.

Some amazing options that you could add in:

Savoury:

Fresh dill and lemon zest

Fresh basil and roasted garlic

Oregano and garlic

Sundried tomato, chopped olives, and roasted garlic

Cilantro and lime zest

Sriracha and chilli flakes

Sweet:

Chocolate shavings and vanilla

Maple syrup and walnuts

Fresh berries

Cinnamon and brown sugar

Almond extract and shaved almonds

The sky is the limit.  Think of your favourite flavour combinations and try it out!

 

Compound Butter:

Materials needed:

Bowl, spoon, spatula,

Parchment or wax paper

Freezer-safe container

Ingredients:

1 stick of butter, softened

Your choice of chopped herbs, spices, and flavours – start with 2-3 tablespoons total, to start.  Adjust according to taste.

Method:

  1. Mix chopped herbs, spices, and flavours into softened butter, making sure to distribute your add-ins evenly.
  2. Transfer butter mixture onto parchment paper and carefully shape into a log. Roll parchment around butter log and twist ends to close off.
  3. Freeze wrapped compound butter. (Alternate: freeze compound butter for 30 minutes and then slice into ½ inch rounds.)
  4. If using the butter soon, store butter in the fridge, otherwise, store the butter in the freezer in a freezer-safe container.