Friday, June 25, 2010

Bert's Best Blueberry Bars

Another recipe from C is for Cooking:  Recipes from the Street.  Chloe and I made these for my uncle (Chloe's "Poppy") for a belated Father's Day present.  These are YUMMY!  The only change I made was that I used 1/2 blueberries and 1/2 cranberries.  I have a soft spot for cranberries and so does my uncle, so I thought why not?

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 stick butter, softened

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

3 cups uncooked old fashioned oats

2 cups fresh blueberries

1. Preheat the oven to 350. Line a 13 x9 baking pan with aluminum foil. Lightly grease the foil with nonstick cooking spray or vegetable oil.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt until well mixed.

3. In a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed, beat together the brown sugar, granulated sugar, and butter until fluffy. Beat in the oil, eggs, and vanilla. With a wooden spoon, mix in the flour mixture until blended. Stir in the oats and blueberries.

4. Use a rubber spatula to spread the batter evenly in the pan.

5. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 min. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool completely. Lift by the foil from the pan and cut into 24 bar cookies.

Swedish Meatballs and Potato Wedges with Rosemary and Garlic

This meal went over so well that Cameron cleaned his plate and Hal actually went back for seconds.  If you know Cameron and Hal you will know that this is nothing short of a miracle.

Swedish Meatballs

"Kottbullar" (meatballs) is a Swedish dish, traditionally served with boiled potatoes and a "lingonberry sauce", similar to a cranberry sauce.  The spice used here is the berry of a pimiento tree.  It is aptly named "allspice" because it tastes like a combination of spices, mostly cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

1/2 potato, peeled
2 tsp Italian parsley, fresh, minced
1/4 onion, finely chopped
1 large egg
400 g ground beef, lean
1-1/2 tbsp milk, 2%
1/4 tsp allspice powder
1/4 tsp salt
ground pepper to taste
2-1/2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp apple cider
2 tsp canola oil
2 tsp olive oil

Peel the potatoes, boil them until very tender, 20-25 minutes.  Drain well, then put them in a bowl and mash.

Mince parsley, add half to the bowl of potatoes and reserve the rest.  Add onion, egg, ground beef, milk, allspice, salt, and pepper.  Using your hands, blend the mixture together until it is just combined well (do not over mix).  Form the mixture into 2-3 cm balls and arrange them on a tray.  Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or up to overnight.  The purpose is to firm up the meat mixture.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together all remaining ingredients, including the reserved parsley, except the olive oil, until the brown sugar is dissolved and a sauce consistency is obtained.  Set aside.

Preheat the over to 350F.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.  Working in batches, add the meatballs and saute until they are golden on all sides, about 5 minutes.  Transfer the meatballs to the prepared baking sheet and brush them with the sauce.

Cover loosely with foil and roast in the middle of the oven 25-30 minutes.  Alternatively, the meatballs may be threaded onto bamboo skewers and cooked on the oiled rack of an outdoor grill.  Serve the meatballs with any remaining sauce on the side.

Serves 4.

Potato Wedges with Rosemary and Garlic

2 potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 4 wedges
2 tsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 sprig rosemary, fresh, finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Blanch potatoes in a pot of salted boiling water for about 5 minutes, then drain well.

Toss the potatoes with the olive oil, garlic, rosemary and freshly ground pepper.  Arrange the potatoes on an outdoor grill rack or an oven broiler pan.

Cook the potatoes on a hot grill or in the over for about 15 minutes, turning occasionally, until crisp and golden brown.  Season with salt and serve.

Serves 2.

Dinner was served with a green salad and steamed cauliflower.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

WOO HOO . . . I hit one out of the park tonight . . .

Supper was delicious tonight -- we both LOVED it . . . and I love trying new recipes.  Can you tell?

Lettuce and Tomato Salad

1 tomato
2/3 curly leaf lettuce
2 radishes
1 green onion
Salt and pepper

Cut the tomatoes into segments and place them in a salad bowl.  Add lettuce leaves.  Finely slice radish and green onion then add them to the bowl.  Pour in 2 tbsp Classic Vinaigrette.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Toss and serve.

Pasta with Sausage and Cauliflower

½ onion, coarsely chopped
1-1/4 cups cauliflower, cut into small florets
1/2 tbsp olive oil
2 Italian sausages
¼ dried chilli peppers, minced
¾ cup chicken broth, warm
2 cups penne rigate or other short pasta
Salt and pepper
2 tbsp parmesan

Keep the serving dishes in the oven at the lowest setting so they are warm when you serve.  Put a colander in the sink to drain the cooked pasta so that it will be ready when needed.  Prepare vegetables.  Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium heat.  Add the onion and sauté 2-3 min with stirring.  Remove the skin from the sausage, and then add the meat to the pan.  Break up the meat using a wooden spoon and cook 4-5 minutes until it loses its pink colour.  Add the chilli pepper (if the sausage is not already spiced).  Pour in the warm broth and stir in the cauliflower.  Bring to a boil then lower the heat.  Cover and simmer 10 min until the cauliflower is cooked al dente and the broth is almost completely absorbed.  Cook the pasta.  Drain the pasta then pour it into the frying pan.  Season with salt and pepper.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Toss well, serve in warmed dishes.

Strawberry and Banana Salad with Mint Sugar

1 cup strawberries
1 banana
2 tbsp fresh mint
1 tbsp sugar

Hull the strawberries, halve them and put them in a bowl.  Cut the bananas into small rounds and add them to the bowl.  Pulse the mint and sugar together in a food processor until finely ground.  Sprinkle the mint sugar over the fruit and toss gently to combine.  Let the fruit stand a few minutes before serving into cups.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Tomato Salad, Tofu Curry with Fruit, Basmati Rice & Fresh Strawberries

I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED these recipes and I was sure Hal would too.  Wrong again.  The man likes tomatoes, fruit, rice, curry and he has unwittingly eaten tofu many, many times in Thai food.  But apparently I'm wrong.  He liked the rice and the strawberries . . . sigh . . . well I won't give up!!

Tomato Salad with Oregano

2 tomatoes cut into quarters
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
¾ tsp dried oregano

Put all ingredients into a bowl and toss well.

Makes 2 servings.

Tofu Curry with Fruit

½ onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
½ apple, peeled and cut into quarters
2 slices canned pineapple, cut into bit-size pieces
1 banana, cut into bite-size pieces
150 g watermelon, cut into bit-size pieces
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp curry powder
½ cup vegetable broth
220 g firm tofu, cut into 1.5 cm cubes
½ tbsp canola oil
¼ cup cream 15%
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat half of the butter in a pan over medium heat.  Add the onion and garlic, then sauté 3-4 minutes until they become translucent.  Add the apple and cook 3-4 minutes until it starts to soften.  Add the curry powder and sauté 1 minute with stirring.  Stir in the broth, and 3-4 tablespoons of the pineapple juice.  Cover and simmer 12-15 minutes with occasional stirring.

Gently press tofu between paper towels to remove excess moisture.  Heat the oil in another large, heavy skillet over medium heat.  Add the tofu cubes in single layer and cook with some stirring until just golden, about 4-5 minutes.  Transfer the tofu to the curry mixture.  Pour the cream into the tofu and curry pan, bring to a boil, then season with salt and pepper.  Keep the pan warm over very low heat.

Add the remaining butter to the skillet used to sauté the tofu cubes.  Add the banana and pineapple pieces and sauté 2-3 minutes.

Serve the tofu curry over basmati rice or quinoa.  Arrange the banana, pineapple and watermelon pieces on top.

Serves 2.

Steamed Basmati Rice
2/3 cup basmati rice
1-1/3 cup water
Salt to taste

Rinse the rice and drain it.

Pour the specified amount of water into a saucepan, cover, then bring to a boil.  Add the rice and salt.  Cover and cook over very low heat about 15 minutes without uncovering.

Remove the saucepan from the heat.  The water should be completely absorbed.  Should it not be, cover and simmer for a few more minuters.  Let stand, covered, 3-5 minutes.

Serves 2

Fresh Strawberries

2 cups strawberries, rinsed and hulled

I only made 2 changes to the recipes.  I used milk instead of cream in the curry.  I used steamed white rice rather that basmati rice.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Have you read Julie & Julia?

I just finished reading Julie Powell's adventures in French cooking.  While I saw vague similarities to the movie . . . which I loved . . . I think the movie was more about Julia Child's life (played by the fabulous Meryl Streep) whereas the book is more about Julie Powell (played by Amy Adams in the movie).  I loved her irreverant style of writing.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Grover's Chicken and Couscous with Juice-Juice

Believe it or not, I got this recipe from my two-year-old daughter's Sesame Street cookbook, called C is for Cooking:  Recipes from the Street.  What I like about this cookbook over most of the other cookbooks I've seen geared toward kids is that it's not full of junk-food recipes or recipes for food that is "dumbed down" to appeal to kids.  I don't believe in kid food.  If we can eat it, so can she, unless of course it's ultra-spicy, in which case I'd just simply tame hers down.  I don't cook a separate meal for her.  Now, as I step down off my soapbox, I present a cutesy-sounding recipe that was actually very tasty and worthy even of being served to company.  That Grover, he knows what he's talking about.

Enjoy!!! :)

Grover's Chicken and Couscous with Juice-Juice
Makes 4 servings


1 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 cloves garlic
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 scallion
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup uncooked couscous
1/4 cup golden raisins


  1. Mix together 1/2 cup of the orange juice, honey, soy sauce and garlic.
  2. Add chicken and marinate 20-30 minutes at room temp or 2 hours in the fridge.
  3. In a medium saucepan, combine remaining orange juice, broth, scallion, oil and salt.  Bring to a boil and stir in couscous and raisins.  Cover pan, remove from heat and let sit for at least around minutes.
  4. Broil or pan fry chicken until cooked throughout.
  5. Serve chicken over the couscous.

Father's Day Strawberry Blintzes

Chloe and I made these for hubby/Daddy this morning for Father's Day, while he had a much-deserved sleep in.  They are a bit labour intensive, but they are worth the work.  They were yummy, especially now that it is strawberry season and we used fresh ones from the farmer's market to make the sauce.

Enjoy! :)

Basic Crepe Batter:

1 cup milk

1/4 cup cold water

2 eggs

1 cup all-purpose flour

Pinch salt

1 tablespoon sugar

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for sauteing the crepes

Cheese Filling:

1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese

4 ounces cream cheese

3 tablespoons confectioners' sugar (I used 5 Tbsp.)

1 tsp. vanilla

1 Tbsp orange zest

1 egg

Strawberry sauce (optional); strawberry preserves work well, too

1 quart strawberries hulled, sliced

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup water

1 teaspoon cornstarch

1 orange zest finely grated

For the crepes:

Combine the milk, water, eggs, flour, salt and sugar in a bowl (or blender)

Blend on medium speed for 15 seconds, until the batter is smooth and lump-free.

Scrape down the sides of the bowl and pour in 3 tablespoons of melted butter.

Blend it again for a second just to incorporate.

Refrigerate the batter for 1 hour to let it rest. If the crepes are made immediately, they have a tendency to be rubbery; when you let the batter rest, the crepes have a better texture and a softer bite.

Cheese Filling:

In a food processor, combine the ricotta cheese, cream cheese, confectioners' sugar, lemon zest, and egg and blend until smooth. Chill the filling to firm it up a bit so it doesn't squirt out of the blintzes.

Put an 8-inch crepe pan or nonstick skillet over medium heat and brush with a little melted butter for added assurance.

Make the sauce:

Combine the strawberries, sugar, water, cornstarch, and zest in a small pot over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and stir gently until the berries release their natural juices. The consistency should remain a bit chunky, it will thicken up when it cools down.

To make the crepes:

Pour 1/4 cup of batter into the pan and swirl it around so it covers the bottom evenly; pour back any excess.

Cook for 30 to 45 seconds, until the crepe batter sets.

Lightly bang the edge of the pan with a wooden spoon to loosen the crepe; then flip it and cook another 30 seconds. The art of flipping a crepe in the air takes practice, so make sure no one is looking when you get the first one going. If this intimidates you, use a heatproof rubber spatula to loosen and flip the crepe. The crepes should be pliable, not crisp, and lightly brown.

Slide them onto a platter and continue making the crepes until all the batter is used.

Cover the stack of crepes with a towel to keep them from drying out.

This makes 10-12 crepes.

Assembly: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Forming the blintzes is kind of like making burritos. Spoon 1/4 cup of the cheese filling along the lower third of the crepe.

Fold the bottom edge away from you to just cover the filling; then fold the 2 sides in to the center.

Roll the crepe away from you a couple of times to make a package, ending with the seam side down.

Put an ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Brush with melted butter.

Set the blintzes into the pan, and brush lightly with melted butter.

Transfer the pan to the oven and bake for 10 minutes so the egg in the filling cooks slightly and the cheese sets.

Using a spatula, transfer the blintzes to serving plates.

OPTIONAL: Spoon the strawberry sauce on top, dust with confectioners' sugar, and serve right away.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Orange Creamsicle Cookies


1/2 cup powdered orange flavored drink mix (like Tang)

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 1/2 cups vanilla baking chips

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

Step 1: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Step 2: In a large bowl, with an electric mixer cream 1 sticks (1/2 cup) of softened salted butter or margarine with 1 eggs and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Beat well.

Step 3: Gradually add cookie mix, stirring until ingredients are well mixed.

Step 4: Roll dough into tablespoon size balls. Place 2 inches apart on a lightly greased baking sheet.

Step 5: Bake 12-14 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool slightly on cookie sheet. Remove from cookie sheet to cooling surface.

Makes 2 1/2 dozen cookies. 

These were awesome!  Especially if you like the combination of orange and vanilla, this will be a winner for you.  Sweet, but oh-so-good!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Italian Sausage Supper

Beet and Green Apple Salad
Italian-Style Sausage in a Tomato Sauce
Potato Puree
Beet Greens
Sugared Peaches


Beet and Green Apple Salad

3 beets
1 Granny Smith apple
2 tbsp Classic Vinaigrette (recipe below)
salt and pepper to taste

Prepare the beets:  boil or steam them about 25-30 minutes.  Let the beets cool down a few minutes, then peel them and dice into 1.5 cm pieces.  Place the pieces in a salad bowl.  Cut the apple into 1.5 cm cubes, without peeling them, but removing the core.  Add the apples to the salad bowl.  Pour in the Classic Vinaigrette, then season with salt and pepper.  Toss well, then serve. Makes 2 servings.

Classic Vinaigrette

Whisk together 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, 3-1/2 tbsp wine vinegar (I used red wine vinegar) and 1 tbsp Dijon mustard.


Italian-Style Sausage in a Tomato Sauce

2 Italian sausages
1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 sprig rosemary (I used fresh out of my herb garden)
1/3 cup My Mother's Tomato Sauce (recipe below)
salt and pepper to taste

Prick through the skin of the sausages in several spots using a fork.  Put the sausages in a saucepan, over them with water, then bring to a boil.  Cover and simmer 5 minutes.  Take the sausages out of the water, pat them dry, then cut each sausage into 3-4 pieces.  (I used mild sausage and cut them into 6 pieces each) .  Heat oil in a sauté pan over medium-low heat.  Add the garlic and rosemary sprig, then sauté until the oil becomes perfumed with the garlic and rosemary aroma, 3-4 minutes.  Pay attention not to let them burn.  Add the sausages, then sauté until they become lightly coloured, 2-3 minutes.  turn them a few times while cooking.  Add the tomato sauce, then cook 8-10 minutes over medium heat, tossing occasionally.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Makes 2 servings.


My Mother's Tomato Sauce

1-2/3 cup canned tomatoes (Ijust used one large can)
1 clove garlic
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1/2 carrot, finely chopped
1/4 stalk celery, finely chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1-1/2 tbsp butter
salt and pepper to taste

Hint:  A food processor and pressure cooker would make things easier with this recipe.

Heat the oil and butter in the pressure cooker or in a saucepan over low heat.  Add the chopped vegetables.  Cook 4-5 minutes, stirring a few times.  The vegetables must soften without burning.  Add diced tomatoes and salt and pepper.  If you are using a pressure cooker, cover, close and bring to high pressure.  Cook 15 minutes from the time it starts to spatter.  If you are not using a pressure cooker, simmer, covered, for about 45 minutes.  Makes 2-1/2 cups.

This sauce can be stored up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator. 

Potato Puree

2 potatoes, Russet or Idaho-type or Yukon Gold
1 tbsp butter
1/3 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste

Prepare the potatoes, leaving the skin on.  Boil or steam until very tender, about 20-25 minutes.  Drain well and peel.  In a microwave-safe bowl, pour in the milk with the butter and microwave on medium-high for a couple minutes until hot.  Pass the potatoes through a food mill or potato ricer (I peeled the potatoes and used a potato masher), then put the puree back into the pot used to cook the potatoes.  Pour in the butter-milk mixture.  Season with salt and pepper and blend well.  Reheat and serve warm.  Makes 2 servings.

Beet Greens

I saved the beet tops from the beets used in the salad.  I rinsed them several times and trimmed off the stems.  Cook, covered, using only the water that clings to the leaves after washing.  Boil for about 3 minutes until tender.  Serve at once seasoned with salt, pepper and butter.  You could also use a little vinegar or fresh lemon juice.


Sugared Peaches

2 peaches or nectarines (I used nectarines)
1 tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
2 tsp sugar

Peel the peaches, cut them in half then pit them.  Cut into bite-size pieces.  Put in a bowl, sprinkle with lemon juice and sugar.  Let stand a few minutes.  Toss well, then portion out into individual cups and serve.  Makes 2 servings.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Soup, Salad and Sandwich Supper

Tonight's Menu:
Barley and Lentil Soup
Blue Cheese Burgers
Lettuce and Tomato Salad
Fresh Grapes

Barley and Lentil Soup
1/3 cup green-brown lentils, rinsed and drained
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
2 cups Swish chard, or spinach, coarsely chopped and packed
1-1/2 cloves garlic, minced (I love garlic so used 2)
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp ground cumin
2 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
1/3 cup pearl barley
3/4 cup canned tomatoes (diced or chopped)
salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Add the onion and sauté 3-4 minutes until soft.  Add the carrots, then sauté 5 minutes with occasional stirring, until they are golden-coloured.  Add the garlic and stir 1 minute, then add the cumin and stir 1 minute.  Pour in the broth, water and barley.  Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer 25 minutes.
Stir in the tomatoes and lentils.  Continue to simmer, covered, until the lentils and barley are tender, 25-30 minutes.
Add the Swiss chard or spinach to the soup, cover and simmer until the chard is tender, about 5 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Thin the soup with more broth or water, if desired.

Makes 5 servings.  The soup keeps up to 7 days in the refrigerator or up to 3 months in the freezer.


Blue Cheese Burgers

1/4 onion, finely chopped
1/4 stalk celery, finely chopped
220 g ground beef, extra-lean or lean
3/4 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
20 g blue cheese, crumbled
1 tsp olive oil
2 hamburger buns

Mix together onion, celery, ground meat, oregano, mustard, salt and pepper.  Divide the mixture into 4 portions.  Shape each portion into rounds and flatten each one slightly.  Crumble the cheese and place a small amount in the centre of half of the rounds (about 2 tbsp or crumbled cheese per round).  Place the remaining meat rounds on top of the cheese topped rounds.  Use your hands to mold the rounds together, encasing the crumbled cheese, and shaping them into burgers.
Cook the burgers on a medium grill, lightly oiled, for about 10 minutes, or until cooked through, turning them once.  Alternatively, you may cook the burgers on a non-stick, heavy-bottom pan, over high heat.  (I cooked in a pan over medium heat).
Split the hamburger buns and place a burger inside each one.  Serve with Dijon mustard and ketchup on the side.

Makes 2 servings.


Fresh Grapes

2-3/4 cup of grapes, rinsed, will serve 2 people.

Lettuce and Tomato Salad

1 tomato, cut into segments
2/3 Boston lettuce, or curly leaf lettuce
2 radishes, finely sliced
1 green onion or scallion, finely sliced
salt and pepper to taste
Classic Vinaigrette (see recipe above)

Place the tomato, lettuce, radishes and green onions in a salad bowl.  Pour in the Classic Vinaigrette.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Toss and serve immediately.

Classic Vinaigrette

Whisk together 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, 3-1/2 tbsp wine vinegar (I used red wine vinegar) and 1 tbsp Dijon mustard.


Sweet N Sour Rhubarb and Spinach Salad

I made this recipe for Judy's 13th birthday party.  Deb is actually tossing the salad in this photo.  The only change I made to the recipe is that I added the cooked rhubarb into the salad dressing rather than on the salad greens and the greens I used was baby spinach.

4 stalks rhubarb, cut diagonally into thin slices
1/4 cup sugar
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
16-20 spinach leaves
6 tbsp. vegetable oil

Place the rhubarb in a wide saucepan.  Sprinkle on the sugar and add enough water to cover by 1".  Place over high heat and bring to a boil.  Cook, uncovered, for exactly 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and pour through a large sieve into a bowl.  Return the liquid to the pan.  Stir in the vinegar, salt and pepper, and place over high heat.  Cook, uncovered, until the mixture is reduced to 1/2 cup.  Meanwhile, divide the spinach among 4 salad plates.  Arrange the rhubarb over the spinach.  When the liquid is reduced, remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the oil.  Pour over the salads and serve at once.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Cailyn's Cool as a Cucumber and Macaroni Salad

2 cups cooked and cooled macaroni
2 ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 green onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/4 cup cucumber chopped.

Mix together.

2/3 cup sugar
1/2 c oil
1/3 cup ketchup
1/4 cup vinegar
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tsp paprika

Mix together and pour over the macaroni and vegetables

Sandra's Sweet & Sour Bean Salad

Very nice flavour!!

2 cups beans (frozen, canned or fresh. If fresh, cook until crisp tender)
1/4 cup onion
2 strips of bacon diced, cooked until crisp
2 tbsp of peppers, red, green or yellow
4 tbsp cider vinegar
4 tbsp brown sugar

In a small skillet, cook bacon until crisp; remove to paper towel. Keeping 2 tbsp of drippings, saute onions. Stir in vinegar and brown sugar, heat thoroughly. Drain beans and place in bowl. Stir in onion mixture. Top with crisp bacon.

Barley Salad with Tomatoes and Corn

Barley is a source of B-complex vitamins and a good source of soluble fibre, the kind that helps to reduce blood cholesterol levels. I thought the salad was okay . .. but not exciting. My fellow testers seemed to feel the same way.

1 cup pearl barley
1 cup tightly packed fresh basil leaves
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
2 cups corn kernels, cooked

Bring large pot of water to boil; add barley. Reduce heat, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 50 minutes or until tender. Drain; chill under cold running water and drain again.

Meanwhile, in food processor or blender, puree basil, Parmesan, oil, salt and pepper ; stir in garlic. Toss with barley. add tomatoes and corn; toss again.

Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.