Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Photo Dump: Week 22 (5 months old!)

Here is the photo dump for the week.  I can't believe Mr. Baby is already 5 months old!

Oops, mess on this rug!

Little rabbit

unexpected stroller nap

Breakfast with mommy.  Yes, it's early.

Finley gets "the look"

The Godbaby

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Going to the market, Part I

We just had our last summer Farmer's Market of the year on Saturday.  We also have a fabulous winter market, but obviously it does not have the same bounty of fresh local fruits and vegetables.  The summer market is fab - there are tons of farmers from Pemberton Valley, Squamish Valley and some that drive up from Abbotsford & the Fraser Valley, as well as baked goods, cooked foods and lots of arts and crafts.  This year they also had a farmer with organic eggs & chicken, an organic beef vendor and a cheese stand.  Yum!  Everything sold there has to be grown or made by the vendor.

But the best part of the market is that it is the social hub of Squamish every sunny Saturday of the summer.  I particularly liked going this year as I had lost touch with lots of my coworkers & other friends on my maternity leave, so it was a great chance to see everyone again.  There's always some good music and cooking demos going on too.

Squamish Farmer's Market with the Chief in the background

Rah rah for the market!  Finley is stoked on his salad greens!
This year I was lucky to be involved in a program called the B.C. Farmer's Market Nutrition and Coupon Program.  This program provides free coupons to groups within the community (seniors, low income families, families with babies) that are redeemable for fresh produce, dairy products and meat at the market.   In addition to the coupons, there were also weekly cooking classes where we would use the goods from the market to cook healthy and nutritious meals.  My involvement in this program came about thanks to a "mommy & baby" group we attend every Wednesday.  At my first cooking class it was a big group of moms cooking amazing Indian food together while our babies hung out in the common room.  Last week the group was half moms with babes and half seniors, so it was a nice mix.  We made yam & potato soup and enjoyed lunch together.  The classes are really fun and a great community building activity.

This Saturday was the last market, as I mentioned, and I had $45 of coupon money left.  I planned to hang out at the market all morning, but as usual, I over planned my morning.  As we enjoyed brunch at Chef Big D's, Finley started to suggest that he might like a nap, and I knew my market window was closing fast.  So I made a deal with Derek: if he could entertain the increasingly fussy Finley for 15 minutes, I would do a power-shop at the market.  If there is one thing I am not known for, it's "getting the lead out", as my mom would say.  On this occasion, however, I ploughed through the market, avoiding all well-wishing small-talkers and throwing coupons at vendors (nicely).  I got some organic eggs, chicken and ground beef, but still had a fair bit of coupon money left.  With time running out, I went to my favourite vegetable stand and started pointing willy-nilly at any colourful and pretty vegetable I saw.  I made it out in 15 minutes and we got home in time for Finley's nap.  But now I had to figure out what I was going to make with red potatoes, Swiss chard, leeks, carrots, green beans, green onions and beets.

The next morning I made a delicious chard & red potato frittata with my organic eggs.  I threw in some rosemary from my "garden" for good measure.  It was delicious!

The next day I made Potato and Leek soup.  You are supposed to use the green parts, aren't you?  My recipe didn't specify, so I did.  It tasted great, but it was a lot greener than I expected!

For the rest of the chard, I pulled out one of my yet-to-be-used cookbooks, Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi.  If you were a vegetable, you would like to be cooked by this man.  I've never seen a book with so many beautiful, mouth-watering, vibrant photos of vegetables.  I mean, just look at the eggplant on the cover!  This is what eggplant aspires to be.  I've been looking forward to cooking with this book, and with a bunch of colourful chard in my hands, this was my chance!

Cookbook Challenge #15: Chick Pea Saute with Greek Yoghurt

You must think I am a nut try to serve chick peas sautéed with Swiss chard to my husband.  This is a man who disdainfully calls cauliflower "that white broccoli."  Well, I'm a nut!  He did eat it (not much of it, but some of it anyway!)  In my humble opinion, it was delicious and it was easy to cook.  Only one hitch - it called for caraway seeds.  I must have every seed available in the spice aisle - coriander, cumin, celery, fennel, fenugreek, mustard (black and yellow) - except caraway.  So I used cumin seeds instead and it was great.  Next time I'll try with caraway, though I am unlikely to get this one past Derek twice!

mmm…. pretty and fresh!

Sauté it up!

Serve over rice with a dollop of Greek yoghurt.  Yum!

Friday, 25 October 2013

Photo Challenge: Horizon

For this week's photo challenge, horizon, my thoughts went straight to sunsets & sunrises.  Most of my shots are of sunsets, as I'm not usually up for the sunrise.

There is nothing quite as lovely as sipping a bevy of choice while watching the sun dip down over the horizon.

Costa Rica.  Bevy of choice: cerveza
3pm sunset, Yellowknife
Yellowknife.  Bevy of choice: hot chocolate
Maui.  Bevy of choice: Pina Colada
Victoria, B.C.  Bevy of choice: Burrowing Owl Merlot

(Last weeks's) Photo Challenge: Hue of Meg

I've been so busy this week, I'm just getting around to last week's photo challenge and have already got the theme for this week.  Oops!  What can I say: real life gets in the way of my virtual life sometimes (and that is a good thing!)

Hue of Meg.  Well, let's keep in simple.  Green is my favourite colour.   I always have something to wear on St. Patrick's Day.  It's a bright, happy colour, and it's the colour of the grass, leaves, plants all around us.  So it makes me think of the natural world that I love exploring.  I love walking through our local forests that are literally dripping green.  The tremendous rains we get here grant us forests with gorgeous big trees and moss and ferns covering every surface.

Here are a few shots of green, all of these taken from a different rainforest, the tropical rainforest in Costa Rica.  The forest was saturated, both with water & with vibrant greens.  I was also lucky to get a few cool shots of some of the local inhabitants, dressed in their green finery.

And here's a shot of me in my finery: I could not help adding a splash of green to my wedding dress!
photo credit: Andy Zoltay

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Photo Dump: week 21

Sorry, this photo dump is a day late… It's been a busy week!

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Photo Dump: Week 20

Wow, it's Wednesday already, which means it's time for the weekly photo dump.