Day 4: Zucchini Pie

Growing up, my parents were never particularly creative when it came to mealtimes. My Stepmom had the same weekly rotation every single week (with the exception of Christmas and Thanksgiving). The same thing. My Stepmom didn’t enjoy a day spent in the kitchen or learning new recipes. She had a handful of dishes she could make well, and that was all she ever needed to bother with. My Mom on the other hand referred to her kitchen as her quiet space and could happily spend hours stood over the stove tweaking a soup or stew. My Stepmom and my Mom are similar in one thing though, they never like to play with new ingredients.

The first time I saw a zucchini was when my aunt brought some from her garden for my stepmother. My Stepmom was incredibly perplexed, none of her 7 meals ever contained a zucchini. I was 8. Stepmom handed this zucchini to me and asked me to figure out something for dinner. I thought it was a cucumber, and was excited when my aunt told me it wasn’t. I had no idea what I could do with it, but I stuck to something simple and made a soup for the family. It was the first time Stepmom had let me cook anything without help and I remember excitedly throwing in herbs and spices from the shelf I was so rarely allowed to touch. As it turned out, I had managed to throw a little bit of everything from our spice rack into that soup. Yeah, don’t do that. I was so proud of myself when it was finally ready.

Ten people sat at that table, and only my oldest brothers dared to take a second taste of whatever was in front of them. I was so proud of myself I could have happily eaten it all, but no one else felt that way. And I don’t blame them. It was not good. It reminds me now of that one episode of Friends, when Rachel attempts a trifle and fails horribly. I failed at my soup, and my brothers were trying so hard to not let anyone say anything, as to hurt my 8 year old feelings.

My oldest brother David likes to recount that tale often, so I thought it would be fun to make him another zucchini dish. This time hopefully a lot better. And it was a success!

Thankfully as I’ve gotten older I have learnt a little more restraint in the kitchen, though I doubt my family will ever forget the incident with the zucchini soup. But here is to Zucchini Pie!

Zucchini Pie

This recipe fed two people well, with enough leftover for a lunch the following day.

Ingredients

Puff pastry (enough to fill your baking dish on the top and bottom)
2 zucchini, grated
1/2 block feta cheese, crumbled
2 sprigs mint, chopped
1 egg

Grate the zucchini and drain out the liquid. Quite a lot of liquid will come out of your zucchinis. I grated mine in the early afternoon a few hours before I needed them, and I still had a little juice left in my bowl.

Combine the zucchini, feta cheese and zucchini in a bowl.

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Add the egg and mix until combined.

Roll out the pastry so that it can line the bottom of the baking dish. Spoon the zucchini mixture on top of the pastry.

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Put another layer of pastry on top.

Bake at 450F for 20 minutes, until the crust is golden.

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Day 3: Apple Raisin Breakfast Casserole

Sometimes with cooking I can get stuck in a bit of a rut. I excitedly try out a few new things and inevitably fall back into the same few standbys. I want to get out of that habit and force myself to try something new. I am going to make 60 new to me dishes and hopefully find myself a whole new list of favourite foods.

Day 3: Apple raisin breakfast casserole

Breakfast is always said to be the most important meal of the day, and yet it is the one meal I generally forget. Why? I’m not exactly a morning person, but I am determined to make more of an effort. I also have been wanting to incorporate more oats into my diet so I came up with this. It turned out to be a bit like an apple crisp, but it was still delicious at breakfast time.

 

Ingredients

3 apples, sliced (I used Granny Smiths)
1 cup raisins
2 cups rolled oats
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 cups milk (I used almond milk for this recipe)
1/4 cup corn syrup
1 egg

 

Line your baking dish with the apple slices, I had enough for about 3 layers of apple. Then top with 3/4 cup of the raisins.

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In a medium bowl combine the oats, cinnamon, baking powder, brown sugar, and the rest of the raisins. Then put all of the oat mixture on top of the apples.

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In another bowl, combine the egg, milk and corn syrup, and drizzle that mixture on top of the oats.

Bake at 375F for 40 minutes

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Day 2. Vegetable Feta Quesadilla

Sometimes with cooking I can get stuck in a bit of a rut. I excitedly try out a few new things and inevitably fall back into the same few standbys. I want to get out of that habit and force myself to try something new. I am going to make 60 new to me dishes and hopefully find myself a whole new list of favourite foods.

Day 2. Vegetable Feta Quesadilla

I generally only ever eat quesadillas when I go out to the local Mexican restaurants. Mostly those ones contain either beans or rice, salsa and cheese. But I have never yet actually made my own, nor have I ever really thought to play around with fillings. So today was the day to try!  Peppers and feta cheese seemed like a good place to start.

Ingredients:

1/2 zucchini, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 onion, diced
Feta cheese
2 tortilla shells

Saute the zucchini, pepper and onion.

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Warm both tortillas on each side and then add the filling, and top with crumbled feta cheese.

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Saute both sides of the quesadilla until crispy.

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Day 1: Pineapple Coleslaw and Potato Bread

Sometimes with cooking I can get stuck in a bit of a rut. I excitedly try out a few new things and inevitably fall back into the same few standbys. I want to get out of that habit and force myself to try something new. I am going to make 60 new to me dishes and hopefully find myself a whole new list of favourite foods.

Day 1: Pineapple coleslaw served with potato bread

I’ve been wanting to try a potato bread for a while now, so I improvised a recipe of my own, and it turned out so delicious. It was a nice accompaniment to the coleslaw.

Potato Bread

2 cups mashed potato, cold
1 clove garlic
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 egg
salt & pepper to taste

Mix all of the ingredients together until a dough like mixture forms.
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Divide the dough into portions and place them onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Flatten each piece.

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Bake at 425F for 15 minutes

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Serve warm.

Pineapple coleslaw

1 1/2 cup shredded cabbage (I used a mix)
1 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup vegannaise (or mayonnaise)
1 tin pineapple cubes, drained
1 tbl curry powder

Combine the cabbage and carrots in bowl. Add the vegannaise and curry powder and mix thoroughly.

Add the pineapple and serve.

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