More doggy cupcakes!!

It was my niece's 2nd birthday yesterday and she put in a special request for my doggy cupcakes. I love making them. They are so cute and just like dogs, each one is unique and has it's own personality.

Here is a quick tutuorial on how to make these cute cupcakes.


black jelly beans
mini M&Ms
strawberry fruit roll ups
regular sized marshmallows
pink sprinkles

I use a Wilton #233 tip to get the individual strands of hair. Pipe the icing around the outer edge of the cupcake. Cut the marshmallow in half and then into 1/3 and 2/3 pieces. Place the 2/3 piece of marshmallow on in the centre of the cupcake and continue piping the icing until everything is covered.

Place black jellybean for the nose and mini M&Ms for the eyes. Cut the fruit roll-up into the shape of a tongue and place under the nose. Cut the 1/3 piece of marshmallow in half and dip the cut edge into pink sprinkles. Place ears at the top of cupcake. Voila!

Cupcake Glory!!

I'm so excited that Cupcakes Take the Cake mentioned my cupcakes!! It's so exciting to see that other people appreciate and love all your hard work.

Korean Pork Bone Soup

Hubby came home from his business trip today ready for some Chinese Food. However, I am still feeling under the weather so we decided to go to the Chinese Food Court. There is a Korean Food Stall there and I've always wanted to try the Korean Pork Bone Soup. Whenever we go to this particular food court there are at least two or three people slurping the soup and sucking on these pork bones. I'm not a soup person and hate deviating from what I know but it was just too tempting to pass up this time.
The soup was a bit spicy but not overpowering. I hate it when the heat burns my tongue and I can't taste or experience my meal. There were four different pieces of pork bone in the soup and the meat was so tender it melted in my mouth.

It also came with some steamed rice so I grabbed my daughter's egg yolk from her dinner and some bulgogi from my husband's and made myself a tasty side dish. I was surprised how yummy tonight's dinner was...especially from the food court.

Roti with Dal and Curry Chicken

I went to a West Indian Bakery today and picked up some very yummy baked goods. I couldn't resist buying some Roti. I had some Dal leftover from my son's birthday celebration and thought it would go perfectly with it. In fact my daughter said it was the best Dal she had ever tasted. I think she just liked it because it was served with the Roti. What does it matter as long as she eats it, right?

Anyway, I called my girlfriend and told her how much the kids enjoyed the roti. She immediately offered to drive some of her curry chicken over and I'm glad she did. It was delicious! Did I ever tell you that I think I'm turning Guyanese? I love everything West Indian. I will definitely have to ask her for the recipe.

Corn Twists

I am totally addicted to Corn Twists!! I can't get enough of them. They are light, fluffy and very salty. In my humble opinion it's even better than theatre popcorn! It's one of my weaknesses. If I have a bag of these delicious, melt in your mouth puffs there's no doubt that it will be finished in a few days. My mouth is watering just looking at this photo...needless to say it was devoured immediately after this photo was posted.
For those of you tempted to run out and buy a bag for yourself...the full name is Chester's Corn Twists made by Frito-Lay.

Bubble and Squeek

I haven't had many pics to post this week. We are still eating Saturday's party food. Today I made "Bubble and Squeek". I had a British friend that had told me about this dish but I had never had a chance to try it. I had a huge dish of mash potatoes left over and I knew the kids would not eat microwaved mash. I've always wanted to try making this dish and this was a perfect opportunity. I heated up my frying pan and added some vegetable oil. I threw in the mash with any leftover veggies we had...broccoli, corn, carrots and green beans. I flattened the mash on the bottom of the pan, waited for it to brown, and then fold it over. I continued to do this until there was bits of crusty potato throughout. I brushed it with some butter and a pinch of salt. The kids loved it. I served it with the leftover prime rib.
If anyone has and actual recipe for this I would really love it if you could forward it to me.

Another 40th Birthday Celebration - Japanese Buffet

Celebration my friends and I are all turning 40 this year...there will be tons of eating. Tonight we ate at "Maison du Japon"...Japanese buffet. I wouldn't say this is the best Japanese food I've had but it's tasty. We even got to sit in a private room tonight. I didn't take pics of all the food...there was just so much...

The wasabi and ginger was presented so nicely.
This is Korean tofu and beansprouts...

A variety of sushi rolls...soft shell crab, eel, and salmon rolls...

Salmon and White Tuna sashimi...

White Tuna rolls...
Green tea and ginger ice cream.

Family Birthday Dinner

It was my son's 10th birthday this week. I usually have a big family dinner to celebrate the kids' birthdays which means cooking for about 27 people. The star of the evening was my Prime Rib roast. It was the my dad makes the best gravy. It was only four ribs this time. I usually buy seven but Costco didn't have the entire roast for sale. I usually rub it with some vegetable oil, montreal steak spice and pickling spice and the bake at 350F for three and a half hours. I usually pour 3 cups of water over the roast after an hour. It was medium which was perfect for us.

I usually serve one main meat dish and then a ton of sides. Tonight we had asian coleslaw, fried vermicelli, sticky rice, mash potatoes, zucchini loaf, steamed rice, samosas, and pizza for the kids.

Here are the cupcakes I made. I couldn't decide what to make for my son's 10th birthday. He's getting too old for Power Rangers and army men. I could have done better if I had planned a bit better but not bad for what I had on hand.

I also attempted to make a coconut cream pie. It tasted great but I think it could have been a bit firmer. I'm not sure why it didn't set properly. If anyone can help me I would appreciate it.

The Mandarin - Chinese Buffet

It was my son's 10th birthday today. It's a biggie! He's in the double digits now...big responsibilities. We usually let the birthday boy/girl pick their birthday meal and today he chose The Mandarin. It's a Chinese buffet. I'm not going to go into detail about what was served since there were more than 100 items...from sushi, to roast beef, to a huge array of desserts. It's good quality food. I really loved it.
I only took pictures of my first two plates of main dishes...I'm too embarrassed to say that I had four plates...but I swear the other two were much smaller and barely covered the plates...
Here are some of the yummy desserts that were available...chocolate covered strawberries, lemon meringue pie, sugar covered dough ball, apple pie, rice pudding...not to mention the huge selection of ice cream and fruit and other cakes and pies. I can't write anymore since I'm coming down from an extreme sugar high and can barely keep my eyes open as I am falling asleep...rolling myself to bed now from an overstuffed tummy....

Chili and Bagels

Still at my sister's...had chili and bagels for lunch. I'm not a big chili person but it wasn't bad. Pretty tasty in fact. I might even make it for my husband...he likes chili, spaghetti, etc.

Sushi and Teriyaki Beef and Broccoli

My sister made the dinner tonight. She made California rolls and cucumber rolls as appetizers. They were so yummy.
The main course was teriyaki beef and broccoli. I've never used teriyaki sauce before but she just marinated the beef for an hour, stirfried it and served with with steamed rice. The kids loved it. Another quick and easy meal idea.

Finger Lickin' Good

It's a tradition that whenever I visit my sister we buy Kentucky Fried Chicken for lunch or dinner. We made it up early enough for lunch today.

I've grown up with KFC and it brings back wonderful memories of my childhood. My cousin's grandfather used to work there and he would sometimes drop off a meal after work. It was a very special treat since my parents only made us Chinese food. They don't have it on the menu anymore but you could get an entire loaf of bread already buttered. If I close my eyes I can almost taste it.

My kids love KFC almost as much as I did. I still enjoy it once in awhile. I actually love the popcorn chicken with the honey mustard sauce. It's very addictive.

As you can see my sister tried to make it healthier by serving Greek Salad instead of fries. It's just not the same...

Burnt Pizza and Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

It was the second day of March Break and I was home with five kids. Three of my own and two of my friends. I don't know how I got distracted but I ended up baking my frozen pizza with the cardboard between it and my baking stone. I didn't realize it until I tried cutting it and it was so sticky. I then realized that the cardboard was there. It caused the pizza to be cooked on the top but raw on the inside. I thought I would just throw it back in the oven for another ten minutes and no one would be the wiser but it ended up being overdone and still soggy on the it was garbage...boooo....
I ended up making grilled cheese sandwiches. The quickest and easiest lunch that I could make under the circumstances. They turned out great! I made sure I didn't walk away from the grill otherwise I might have been forced to take five kids to McD's and I was NOT prepared to do that! I like my grilled cheese flattened until it's super thin. The kids gobbled it up although they were disappointed with the pizza. I offered them the top of the pizza...cheese and pepperoni...but they weren't too keen.

After all the kids ate it was my turn. I was still kicking myself about wasting a whole pizza so I picked the toppings off the pizza and put it on top of my grilled cheese sandwich. You know what? It was YUMMY! It's like having a crispy thin stuffed crust pepperoni pizza. My new invention. I don't know how often I would make this though 'cause that would mean pulling the topping off a perfectly good pizza.

Fresh Raspberries in Yogurt

I was cleaning our my fridge and found a box of forgotten raspberries in the corner. Luckily they were still fresh. I decided to put some in my Activia Vanilla Yogourt. I'm not a big fruit person but since spring and then summer is just around the corner I thought I better get started on my diet. This may just be my substitute for Coffee Crisp Ice Cream...not...

Tandoori Chicken

Chicken thighs were on sale last week so I decided last night to make Tandoori Chicken. I love Indian food but it's been ages since we've been to my favourite Indian buffet place. It's hard to get out nowadays with three kids and I would never attempt to bring them along.

I lived in Malaysia for two months when I was working and my favourite memories were of eating at the outdoor food stands. The Tandoori Chicken was baked in a clay oven and practically melted in your mouth. Absolutely delicious!

I marinated my chicken thighs with Patak's Tandoori Curry Paste and plain yogourt for about two hours. I think overnight would be better. The chicken was very moist and quite tasty but because I baked it on a baking sheet it wasn't as dry as you would get it in an Indian restaurant.

As you can see I'm still eating the Greek Salad that I bought on Friday.

Panfried dumplings

My mother likes to make dumplings, freeze them , and then pack them into care packages for my sister and I. I've only made dumplings once in my almost 40 years and maybe now is the time to start doing the same. It's not hard.

She takes a pound of ground pork, cooked napa cabbage (strained and towel dried), some chopped water chestnuts, handful of shrimp and then season with soya sauce, salt and a bit of sugar. Mix it all up and then wrap with wonton wrappers. There are many different kinds so you may have to experiment to see which ones you like. Dumplings are so versatile. You can add whatever you like...I know some people add dried mushrooms, chinese sausage, green onion...all up to you.

I usually boil my dumplings until they float and then drain and panfry them until they are brown and crispy. Right at the end I put a couple of dollops of oyster sauce and toss the dumplings until they are nicely coated and the heat carmelizes the sugar.

Sunday breakfast

Sunday morning breakfast today was easy breezy toasted sesame bagels with butter and herb cream cheese. I love how the butter melts and makes the bagel chewy and the ooey gooey melted cream cheese adds the extra bit of flavour. YUM!! Even Spongebob approves!

Vanilla Yogourt and canned fruit...YUM!

We had to gulp down a quick dinner tonight and rush off to the rink for skating. I don't usually have a late night snack but since I had a healthy dinner of salad and chicken I was starving. I fixed myself a bowl of Vanilla Activia Yogourt and topped it with some canned peaches and mandarin oranges. It was delicious! I could have eaten more but I'm testing my self control.

Hong Kong Style Breakfast

Saturday morning hubby and the kids like to go out for breakfast. We live near one of the Asian areas in Toronto so there are many options. Today we went to an indoor food court and ordered a Hong Kong style breakfast. I only managed to take a picture of the ham and macaroni soup because everything else was quickly devoured. This is the breakfast special for C$3.45 plus tax. One big bowl of ham and macaroni soup with an egg sunnyside down, hotdog and a slice of HK style bread with butter AND a choice of hot drink. We chose Ovaltine. You can't go wrong and this food stall is busy all day long!

Shake N Bake and Hoisin Chicken

I bought a tray of chicken thighs for dinner tonight. I thought about making my own breading for the chicken but had a craving for Shake N Bake. I bought the Original blend. I prepared most of the thighs with the Shake N Bake coating but there were two thighs left. I decided to cover the remaining two thighs with hoisin sauce and baked it with the rest. The Shake N Bake chicken was delicious and the hoisin sauce chicken thighs were very tasty too. I served it with some steamed rice and more of that Greek Salad. Again...simple and easy...that's what I love...

Rotisserie Chicken & Greek Salad

I was sick today and missed potluck lunch with the cousins. Darn. The kids were sick all week and today was their first day back. I was forced to go out and buy groceries since I was homebound for four days.
One good thing about doing this blog is that it makes me more conscious of what I'm eating and feeding to the kids. I realized that we eat out too much and are dependant on ready-made foods. I am really going to try to eat healthier.
Today I bought a ready made Greek salad and rotisserie chicken for lunch. (I'm starting the home-cooking thing tomorrow.) I think buying the ready made salad will force me to eat more veggies since I don't have to spend the time to prepare it.

Hakka Chinese Food

I had dinner with one of my oldest and dearest friends tonight. We hit Costco and then when we were shopped out and hungry we headed over to our favourite Hakka Chinese restaurant, Fredericks. I only discovered this place last year but supposedly it's well known in our part of the town. We ordered Hakka Chow Mein with chicken and shrimp and Crispy Beef with steamed rice. It was so yummy!
I'm keeping my fingers crossed that my fortune means that I will be finding loads and loads of money soon!

Hoisin Chicken and Pasta

I was going out for dinner tonight with one of my girlfriends but still had to make dinner for hubby and the kids. I haven't gone grocery shopping all week since hubby was away on business and the kids have been sick so I was really struggling on what to make. I decided to defrost some already marinated chicken and boiled some pasta shells.

I still wasn't sure what I was going to do with them. Fry them up together with some oyster sauce? And then I remembered I had some chicken broth in the fridge. I stirfried the chicken until it was cooked and then I added some hoisin sauce. I then quickly fried it until the sauce carmelized. Reheated the chicken broth and boiled some frozen broccoli and dinner was ready. Quick and easy...that's the way I like it.

Super simple banana bread

The kids were home sick today so I thought I would make them a treat. They love my banana bread. Actually it's my best friend's recipe but it has become one of my favourites. Whenever my friends come home for a visit they always ask me to make my banana bread. It's super simple and I love that I always have the ingredients in my pantry. Some recipes call for mayonaise or sour cream to make it moist. This is more like a cake and is so moist. You can find the recipe here.

Another easy dinner...

So hubby is finally coming home tomorrow. He's been on business since Monday. Thank goodness! The kids have been sick all week and I'm at the end of my rope. It seemed like I had been cooking all day so I was looking for something easy for dinner. Grilled cheese is simple and the kids love it. Spread some margarine on the outside and then slap a slice of cheese in the middle, grill it up and I'm done. The kids like it plain but I like to dip mine with a bit of ketchup.

Breakfast for dinner

Whenever my husband is away on business it's like a mini vacation for me. I don't have to worry about what to make for dinner. Hubby needs to have a good meal when he comes home from work. The kids and I, however, can have pizza or chicken fingers and we are happy.

Last night we had breakfast for dinner. Who says eggs have to be for breakfast. Bacon and eggs are as delicious for dinner as it would be for breakfast. Simple and easy...that's how I like it.