Blog Post List

This blog post list contains the most recent blog posts from The Messy Baker in reverse chronological order. You can also browse by recipe category or use the search function.

Roasted Strawberry and Rhubarb with Yogurt
22 Jun
Strawberry-Rhubarb En Papillote
[caption id="attachment_7789" align="alignnone" width="500"]The strawberry-rhubarb en papillote is in the bag, heading for the oven -- The Messy Baker En Papillote (French for "in parchment") makes for tender rhubarb in no time.[/caption] As if Friday isn't reason enough to celebrate. Today is the first anniversary of Lynn Ogryzlo's The Ontario Table, and I'm one of her virtual guests. I'm pretty chuffed to be asked to take part. Not only do I enjoy a party, I like hanging out with Lynn, even if it is online. First of all, she spells my  name right. Granted, with a surname like Ogryzlo, you're probably sensitive to such things, but it still earns her bonus points. Secondly, she loves my  doughnuts, and last but certainly not least, she takes one of the most sensible approaches to eating local I've ever seen. Instead of giving you the stink eye if everything on your shopping list doesn't comply with the 100-mile diet, she simply issues a $10 challenge. The concept is easy. Each week, spend $10 of your grocery money on local food. That's it. Small (locally grown) potatoes, right?
Pie Man
18 Jun
Father’s Day Pie
[caption id="attachment_7762" align="alignnone" width="500"] Andrew The Pie Man Thomson.[/caption]   How great is my dad? He's so wonderful his son-in-law donned oven mitts and let his wife boss him about for 3 hours so there would be homemade pie for dessert on Father's Day. How great is my husband? He's so wonderful he donned oven mitts and let his wife boss him about for 3 hours so his father-in-law could have homemade dessert for Father's Day.
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09 Jun
Half an Hour Later in Newfoundland…

[caption id="attachment_7703" align="alignleft" width="263"] Recommendations of where to go in St. John's, written on my boarding pass by Porter check-in. I feel welcome already.[/caption] When you read the post title, did you hear the authoritative voice of a CBC announcer in your head? If you're Canadian, you probably...

Salt-Cured Arctic Char
07 Jun
Sustainable Seafood | Citrus-Cured Arctic Char
[caption id="attachment_7660" align="alignnone" width="500"] Fried Lingcod Po-Boy[/caption] I hate being "that person." You know, the one who goes out to dinner with a group of friends and holds up everyone's order because she asked the server where the tilapia came from. To ensure no one starved, I stopped asking. By default, I stopped ordering fish. Whether they occur at a restaurant or the seafood counter, moments like these are problematic for many people. While the red / yellow / green seafood rating system is easy to understand, the answers aren't as straightforward as the colour-coding. Is tuna a good choice? Turning to my SeaChoice app, the answer is.... That depends.
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04 Jun
The Good, The Bad and the Improvised
[caption id="attachment_7624" align="alignnone" width="415" caption="Beet shoots one week in!"][/caption] This shouldn't be happening. There are few worms in this soil, the ground has grown nothing but grass for 40 years, and the great big maple nearby calls dibs on all the nutrients. In spite of this, the beet are beginning to sprout. A week into the Family Garden Project (or The Family Plot as one friend called it), we are seeing results. These little green leaves poking through the earth are not weeds. The line is too straight. No, these non-weeds are the makings of beets. And even though I hate beets, I am thrilled to see progress in my mother's quadrant. [caption id="attachment_7625" align="alignleft" width="264" caption="Beans are beginning to sprout!"][/caption] Over in my younger sister's quarter? The beans have green shoots popping up through the earth. Maybe it's the marigolds? Maybe it's the rain? Maybe it's just what happens when you stick some seeds in the ground and move out of Mother Nature's way? No matter the reason, these tiny green shoots give me hope. Because things did not go so well in my kitchen on Saturday.
01 Jun
Kitchen Disasters & Fixes | One-Day, One-Dollar

Spend a dollar. Save a dinner.  Not a bad slogan. May 1st my app launched. A month later, I'm celebrating with a sale. Today only, Kitchen Disasters and Fixes is priced at $0.99. Both the iTunes version and the Android version are  2/3 off the regular price of...

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29 May
The Family Garden Project
The Family Garden Project - The Messy Baker Who are these people and what on earth are they doing? No doubt this is what neighbours wondered all last year as they saw a great circle of grass tilled, newspapers laid down, earth piled up and various people walking about the mess pointing, shrugging and scratching their heads. After a year drawing, planning, redrafting and wild guesses, the family vegetable patch came to be this past week. A neighbour took the bird's-eye shot (above)  from her second-story window. In case you're curious, I'm  the one the far right crouched down. The ridiculously large green thing on my head is a gardening hat. I like to think it makes me look like Audrey Hepburn. No one else sees this.
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24 May
Smoky Bacon and Kale Gratin
Marriage often requires compromise. After almost 10 years, Andrew and I have sorted out the domestic chores, bill payments, and even litter box duties. Yet despite impressive and extended negotiations, we remain deadlocked on certain foods. Andrew loves anything bacon and groans at almost anything that once had roots. Me, the reformed vegetarian? While I'm always open to desserts, I want less meat and more vegetables on the menu. This dish seemed like the perfect solution.
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22 May
I’m on CTV today

If you're at home or have a TV recording device (VCR, PVR, DVR, JFK LMONP or whatever) I'm in Kitchener today on CTV's News at Noon. I'll be saving the world (or at least South Western Ontario) from senseless cooking disasters. Tune in as I...

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20 May
Cast-Iron Skillet Chicken
Cast-Iron Skillet Chicken - TheMessyBaker.som I'm filing this skillet chicken under "Why didn't I think of this?" This dubious looking chicken is one of the best I've ever had. Moist, juicy and with an impossible crisp skin. It also won me over with its simplicity. I made this in between bursts of gardening. Charmian 246. Weeds 0. Like all good recipes and techniques, this arrived in a cirucuitous route. Karen, a fellow roast chicken fanatic, read about the method in the New York Times, who in turn described the technique as "age-old" and "classic." The idea is to cook a whole chicken evenly using a hot cast-iron frying pan. By splaying the legs and placing them directly on the hot pan, the dark meat begins cooking before the breast meat even hits the oven. The bird emerges evenly cooked with crisp skin and moist meat. I'm sure someone is going to tell me this is how they used to do it in the 1700s or that their grandmother  never cooked a bird any other way, but it's new to me, so I'm passing it along.

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