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.

Homemade Eggnog and Eggnog Ice Cream
06 Dec
Recipe: Homemade Eggnog
Homemade eggnog and eggnog ice cream. One recipe. Two results -- The Messy Baker.com I’m trying not to be resentful but a certain celebrity llama has more Twitter followers than I do. And his first name isn't Dali. To be fair, the llama is a talented goat herder, so I can see the appeal. Why all the fuss over a shaggy camelid? Polka Spot belongs to the Fabulous Beekman Boys — along with a polydactyl barn cat, 160 goats, two sheep and a cheese cave. They all reside on a 60-acre farm with a 210-year-old mansion. I’d be insanely jealous if I didn’t know how much work 60-acres and 640 goat hooves require. The only low-maintenance item on that list is the cheese cave, and I'm sure there's more to that than simply maintaining a thermostat.
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05 Dec
Recipe: Walnut Rumballs
Walnuts are the hard-done-by, neglected middle child of the nut family. Between the mature and established almond, with its fancy frangipane and marzipan pastes, and attention-grabbing, TV-diva baby of a macadamia (I'm looking at you Roseanne!) walnuts are easily overlooked. Sure, you can find them huddled in a corner with the maple syrup, but have you ever picked one out of a bowl of mixed nuts at a party? Or seen them chumming with the popular butters like cashew butter, peanut butter and  -- here we go again -- almond butter? I thought as much. Being the hard-done-by, sometimes-neglected middle child in a family of nuts myself, I can relate. Like walnuts, I can be a tad bitter (and who wouldn't be given the circumstances?) But warm me up and give me some chocolate? And we can be quite the charmers.
How to table chocolate for truffles - The Messy Baker
03 Dec
How to Table Chocolate Ganache for Truffles

Last week I had the pleasure of taking a truffle and bon bon making course in Toronto with Marissa Scibetta at Bonnie Gordon College of Confectionary Arts. For two glorious evenings I was the proverbial kid in the candy shop, weighing, heating, mixing, spooning and...

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28 Nov
Recipe: Buttermilk Bean Waffles
I'm doing my part to make beans hip and cool. I even I walked through downtown Toronto clutching a clear plastic bag brimming with the four pounds of brightly coloured lentils, legumes and beans picture above. No one laughed. No one pointed at me. And if I may say so, I think the odd fashionista stole a sideways glance as I strutted my stuff down King Street. I hadn't planned on being the poster girl for legumes. I was in Toronto to meet up with Julie Van Rosendaal, this time in wasp-free, neutral territory. She says she's fine with my previous behaviour, but I notice she brought protection -- her coauthor Sue Duncan. Julie and Sue were in Ontario to promote their new book Spilling the Beans: Cooking and Baking with Beans and Grains Every Day. Part way through the interview, Julie realized her 2 kgs of demo beans would not fit into her luggage and she turned her big blue eyes to me in desperation. Being a cooperative person, I left the interview with lots of information and enough fibre to clean out an elephant. During the course of the conversation, I learned several compelling pro-bean points. Enough to not only have me haul them about Canada's largest city, but to feel darned good about it. Beans are great because:
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24 Nov
Happy Thanksgiving: How to Carve Poultry
Happy Thanksgiving to my American friends! Since I can't join you in person and help out  with dinner, I thought I'd share a video that could make your holiday meal run a bit more smoothly -- or at least save your good table cloth from some unnecessary grease spots. While the turkey roasts, take 3 minutes and learn how to carve the bird like a pro. The poultry-phobic might want to bookmark this post since the instructions work perfectly for Christmas, birthdays, Sunday family dinners or any time you serve roasted poultry -- be it duck, turkey, goose, chicken or itty-bitty Cornish hens. So sharpen those knives and have a safe and very happy Thanksgiving! PS: For those who shun Black Friday, stay warm and cozy inside and take advantage of  Rouxbe Online Cooking School's Cyber Monday Deal. See below for details.
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21 Nov
Recipe: Coconut Baked Chicken with Dipping Sauce
The biggest (okay, only) disappointment in meeting Roger Mooking is he is not a Gemini. How can that be? We're so alike. Like me, Roger once felt "like a mad man caught in two worlds." It took a long time for him to realize his love of food and music both branch from the common root of entertainment. I spent years figuring out my food/writing dichotomy is anchored in story telling. Same thing, if you think about it -- only I have a blog and he has a recording studio.
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01 Nov
Canada Cooks the Books

    I'm abandoning you for the next little while. But it's for a good cause. I'm stage managing Canada Cooks the Books. It's a student cooking competition with a twist. Culinary students go onstage with cookbook authors and make a recipe for a Canadian cookbook in hopes...

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27 Oct
Recipe: Spiced Grilled Chicken
You've all heard the expression "Dollars to doughnuts." But in my world the expression should be, "Doughnuts to Morocco." Those versed in Moroccan cuisine might assume the connection comes from sfenj, the popular Moroccan street food that closely resembles the North American doughnut. You'd get a Brownie point for your knowledge, but you'd be wrong. That logic is far too straight-forward. When Joanne and I made the hand-forged sour cream old-fashioned doughnuts, the conversation started with how much we missed cooking together and quickly bounced about like doughnuts frying in hot oil. We careened through brownie baking in our shoebox of a kitchen, rolled past knitting expeditions and landed hard on travel memories. By the time the doughnuts were being packed up, we had made a pact to celebrate our 50th birthdays with the two of us taking a trip together. Like we had to Banff, Montreal, Cape Cod, England, Lisbon and New Zealand. Sometime in 2013, we will take a trip together. Some place we've never been. Somewhere bright and lively and exotic, filled with smells and sights unlike those on Southern Ontario. Somewhere our husbands have no interest in going. Morocco is high on the list. And I've been dreaming of tagines and sweet North African spicing ever since.
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21 Oct
Leadership and Purpose
Will my brushes with greatness never cease? First, my friend Dana is a judge on The Food Network's Recipe to Riches, then Super Jess included me in her Doughnut Bonanza, and today my husband launches his very own book -- Leadership and Purpose: A History of Wilfrid Laurier University. By Andrew M. Thomson. Yes, world, nine years ago I married a professor and today I'm sleeping with a published author. Not a cookbook author, mind you. But I did manage to convince him to include one recipe. And I've made it to celebrate the day.
Luscious Lemon Pudding
20 Oct
Recipe to Riches | Luscious Lemon Pudding & a Review
Luscious Lemon Pudding It's a cold, raw, rainy morning and I'm breakfasting on Grandma Glo's Luscious Lemon Pudding, which won last night's Recipe to Riches challenge. I had hoped to serve it to guests tonight, but I don't think there will be enough left. I'll be making a second batch later today as it's an easy recipe and I'll take any excuse to justify my stand mixer's existence. I admit, before the episode aired, I was rooting for Glo McNeil, partly because she's 82 and partly because her recipe has lemon in the title. I'm always on the look out for a good lemon recipe since it's one of the few desserts my father likes. And frankly, if I have to make another Lemon Meringue Pie for a family occasion, I just might throw it at someone. The problem? I'm no fan of pudding. I find it slimy with a disconcerting skin-like seal. But  I was willing to throw myself on this one for my father's sake. The results were a delightful surprise. Luscious Lemon Pudding has all the elements of the pie my father loves -- lemony, sweet and creamy -- but without the fuss of pastry. It's ubelievably light and, as if I was being rewarded for my sacrifice, the "pudding" is actually a velvety sauce that swims below the mousse-like topping.

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