Supper Solutions for the Hungry Writer

Pursuing a writing career while having a full-time job means I’m often working at home in the evenings and weekends. A lot of things have to take a back seat while I try to take the time to write and be creative. (I have to say I’m in awe of men and women who have a full-time job and children and still find the time to pursue their passion.) So when I have a burst of creativity or if I’m trying to make a deadline, cooking is one of the things that often falls by the wayside.  Continue reading

NaNoWriMo: Mulligatawny Soup for the Writer’s Soul

I had no idea what I was in for when I signed up for NaNoWriMo. Sure, I was intrigued by the idea of writing a book in 30 days, but finding the time and energy after a full day’s work is another challenge. My only real hope is to write like crazy on the weekends.

One way for me to find extra time is to prepare meals for the week. Since it’s fall, I turned to one of my favourite soup recipes.  It’s from  the cookbook Anne Lindsay’s New Light Cooking, and is easy to prepare and flavourful. Continue reading

Paper Fortune Cookie Tutorial

Here’s a neat idea for a Chinese New Year party from the blog Feels Like Home, paper fortune cookies!

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You won’t believe how easy it is to make these paper fortune cookies. They’re inspired by the Silhouette machine template below, but you can make them almost as easily without a machine.

When I saw these paper fortune cookies in the Silhouette store, I had to make some.

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Chinese Fortune Cookies

If you’re looking for something to make for Chinese New Year which will be on Thursday, February 19, 2015, how about homemade fortune cookies? Try this recipe from the blog, Cecile’s Cuisine.

Cecile's Cuisine

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A  few Thursdays ago,  I hosted an Asian Cooking Class for a fun group of women. Not only did we have a lot of fun, but we also learned to make many yummy recipes. Our menu consisted of Pot Stickers, Teriyaki Chicken, Sesame Infused Broccoli, Coconut Rice and Fortune Cookies. Yes, we made fortune cookies;-)

Did you know however not all Chinese restaurants offer Chinese Fortune cookies?!?! Yes. it is true. I learned the night of the cooking class that  Fortune Cookies were An American tradition. Yep, it is true!!

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According to Wikepedia, “Fortune cookies are often served as a dessert in Chinese restaurants in the United States and some other countries, but are absent in China. The exact origin of fortune cookies is unclear, though various immigrant groups in California claim to have popularized them in the early 20th century, basing their recipe on a traditional Japanese cracker. Fortune cookies…

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Summer in a Glass

I can’t believe we’re in the last two weeks of summer! I didn’t finish my summer-to-do list like spending an afternoon plunging down a water slide, using an extreme heat wave as an excuse to have a Dairy Queen Blizzard for supper, and convincing myself (and others) that lying on a beach working on my tan is how a writer comes up with great, creative ideas.


Ice Cream Soda

One thing I do to help prolong that summer feeling is to make an old-fashioned ice cream soda, the way we made it when my parents owned a restaurant.  A soft drink cost fifteen cents in the 1960s and we didn’t serve it from a can or a bottle. The restaurant had a real soda fountain complete with the taps with big handles that you pulled down for soda water, pumps for syrup and a fridge for ice cream. When a customer ordered a soft drink, we filled a glass with soda water and pumped in flavoured syrup to make either coke, 7-up, cream soda or cherry-coke.

To make an old-fashioned ice cream soda, take a tall glass, put in a couple of scoops of vanilla or chocolate ice cream and fill it with 7-up. If you want a coke float, switch the 7-up for coke.

It’s so delicious, it’ll disappear as quick as summer.

What are you doing to enjoy these last days of summer?


Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake


My friend at the blog Tranquil Dreams, mentioned a coffee cake that I made for a get-together. I enjoy baking and usually try to find something that is low in fat and sugar. Whenever I’m invited to a potluck or a get-together, I have the habit of baking something I’ve never made before, so I’m never sure how it’ll turn out. I cross my fingers and remind myself that I can run to the grocery store if it fails. The recipe I used for the Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake is from Anne Lindsay’s New Light Cooking.  I have three of her cookbooks and use them often. Her recipes use ingredients I have on hand, are simple to make and fail-proof.

The only bad thing is that I’ve convinced myself that since it’s low in fat and sugar, I can have a bigger piece. Don’t forget the ice cream!

Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake


1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans

50 ml

1 cup chocolate chips(6 oz/ 175 g)

250 ml

1/4 cup Packed brown sugar

50 ml

2 tsp Cinnamon

10 ml

1 Egg


1 cup 2% evaporated milk

250 ml

2 tbsp Vegetable oil

25 ml

2 tsp Pure vanilla

10 ml

2 cups All purpose flour

500 ml

3/4 cup Granulated sugar

175 ml

1 tbsp Baking powder

15 ml

1 tsp Baking soda

5 ml

1/4 tsp Salt

1 ml

  1. Toast pecans on baking sheet in 350F (180C) oven for 5 minutes or until golden. Let cool. In bowl, mix chocolate chips, pecans, brown sugar and cinnamon.
  2. Cake: in large bowl, beat egg, stir in milk, oil and vanilla. In sieve on top of milk mixture, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt, stirring to sift into bowl; stir just until dry ingredients are moistened.
  3. Lightly grease or spray10-inch (3 L) Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray. Spoon in half of the batter; sprinkle with half of the nut mixture. Spread with remaining batter; sprinkle with remaining nut mixture, lightly pressing into batter.
  4. Bake in 350F (180C) oven for 45 to 60 minutes or until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool in pan on rack. Turn out onto serving plate, chocolate and nuts facing up. Makes 12 servings.

Make ahead: Cover and store for up to 1 day.