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Recipe: No-Knead Bread

Adapted from Jim Lahey, Sullivan Street Bakery
Time: About 1½ hours plus 14 to 20 hours’ rising

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, more for dusting
¼ teaspoon instant yeast
1¼ teaspoons salt
Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed.

1. In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and salt. Add 1 5/8 cups water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hours, preferably about 18, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.
2. Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.
3. Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
4. At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is O.K. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.
Yield: One 1½-pound loaf.

No-Fail Christmas Cookies
Recipe via Maureen from Craft n' Chat Kingston

Here’s a wonderful recipe for children to help make because overworking and re-rolling the dough doesn’t harm it. Decorate with piped pink icing “flowers” if desired.

2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp. baking soda

2 tsp. cinnamon

2 tsp. cloves

2 tsp. ginger

1 cup butter

1-1/2 cups granulated sugar

1 egg

Stir together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and ginger. In large bowl, cream together butter, sugar and egg; gradually add dry ingredients, mixing well. (If dough is very soft, chill slightly for easier rolling.) On lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/8 inch thickness. With cookie cutters, cut into desired shapes; place on greased baking sheet. Bake in 375F oven for 5 to 8 minutes or until set. Makes about 50 cookies.

Super Easy Party Pizza

Recipe by C.A.


1 frozen pizza dough ball
1/2 can tomato paste
Olive oil
3/4 - 1 cup shredded mozzarella
5 olives
3 sun-dried tomatoes
3 slices sandwich ham
cornmeal or semolina flour


1. Preheat oven to 500º F. Dust large cookie sheet with cornmeal or semolina flour.

2. With some flour on your hands, stretch/roll out your defrosted pizza dough to fit the cookie sheet. Using a brush/spoon/fingers, coat the dough with olive oil and sprinkle on the rosemary, oregano, basil and salt (can use italian seasoning instead). Using a brush/spoon/fingers, spread the tomato paste onto the dough in a fairly thin layer.

3. Add the olives and the sun-dried tomatoes (I usually chop them up into smaller pieces). Cut the ham into thin strips and sprinkle onto the dough. Cover dough with a light layer of cheese and drizzle on some more olive oil.

4. Bake for about 7-9 minutes or until crust is toasty and light golden.

Note: Naturally, you can use any toppings that you have on hand! I usually go with whatever is in the condiment shelf and the in the cold-cut drawer of my fridge. This comes out tasting very home-made, but since the dough for the crust is done for you, there is way less work and almost no clean-up!

Apple Crumble
Recipe by C. A.


6-8 Baking apples - Ida Reds or MacIntosh or Cortland all work well
1/2 cup flour or cornstarch
1/2 cup brown sugar (or use some white sugar mixed with molasses or honey)
1 cup large flake oats (quick cooking oats will work too)
1/2 cup butter, margarine or shortening
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp salt


1. Peel, core and slice apples to fill a casserole or baking dish fairly full.

2. In a cup or small bowl, mix about 1/4 cup flour or cornstarch with the cinnamon, ginger, cloves and cardamom. (You will need enough to lightly coat the apples.) Toss dry ingredients with apples until lightly covered and then place into casserole or baking dish.

3. In a bowl, add your butter, margarine or shortening. Use a fork to mix in the sugar until well-blended (you will end up with something the consistency of peanut butter). Add a 1/4 cup of flour or cornstarch and mix in and then add the oats and the salt and mix until you have a loose crumble.

4. Sprinkle crumble onto apples and bake at 375º Farenheit for about 30 - 45 minutes. It will be ready when it starts to smell nice and if you can test by piercing the apples with a knife to see if they are soft.

Enjoy warm, try it with ice-cream, or have it for breakfast!

Note: For gluten and dairy free, just stick to cornstarch instead of flour and shortening or margarine instead of butter.

Another note: this kind of recipe does not require exact measurements, so feel free to go outside the amounts recommended if things don't seem right to you! You don't need to add the spices if you don't have them or don't like them! Allspice is another possible substitute for my combination.

Pumpkin Spice Loaf
Recipe from


2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup canned pure pumpkin
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup whole milk
1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts


Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 325°F. Butter 9x5x3-inch metal loaf pan. Sift first 7 ingredients into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until light. Gradually beat in 3/4 cup sugar. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Beat in pumpkin, lemon peel and vanilla. Whisk sour cream and milk in small bowl. Beat flour and sour cream mixtures alternately into batter in 2 additions each. Fold in nuts. Transfer batter to pan; smooth top. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar.

Bake bread until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 1 hour 10 minutes. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Turn out onto rack; cool. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Wrap in foil; store at room temperature.)

Pumpkin Spice Granola
Adapted from Baking Bites via


5 cups rolled oats
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
¾ tsp. salt
¾ cup brown sugar
½ cup pumpkin puree
¼ cup applesauce
¼ cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup pepitas


1. Preheat the oven to 325° F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

2. In a large bowl, combine oats, spices, and salt. Mix well.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk together brown sugar, pumpkin puree, applesauce, maple syrup and vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth. Pour wet ingredients into oat mixture and stir until the oats are evenly coated. They will be moist. Evenly spread the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet.

4. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove pan from the oven and stir. Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes or until the granola is golden and crisp. Remove from the oven and stir in dried cranberries and pepitas. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

*Note-serve granola with yogurt, milk, or enjoy plain. Can substitute fresh cranberries for dried - simply add before putting granola into oven.

Shepherd's Pie
Recipe by C.A.

Makes two 9 inch casserole dishes


4 lbs potatoes peeled - any kind as long as they are good mashed
7-8 carrots scrubbed or peeled
1 1/2 lbs lean ground beef
6 mushrooms (optional)
2 medium onions
3 cloves garlic
1/2 cup butter
1 - 2 cups milk
1 cup beef stock/bullion
2 - 3 tbsps flour
2 tbsps ketchup
2 tsps worcestershire sauce
1 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp cinnamon (optional)
1/4 tsp cumin (optional)


Peel and boil the potatoes until soft enough to mash. Drain and return to pot or to a large bowl. Add about 1/2 cup butter and about a cup of milk and mash. You will likely need to add some additional milk and butter until you get a nice creamy consistency. Stir in one clove of garlic and 1/2 medium onion both   either grated or chopped very finely. Season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside.

Slice up carrots and steam in boiling water until softened. Drain. Season with salt and pepper and set aside. (You may alternately choose to mash them coarsely with some butter added.) Set aside.

Finely dice 1 1/2 medium onions and mince 2 cloves of garlic. Finely chop the mushroom. Add a small amount of oil to a large pan and gently saute onions, garlic and mushrooms for 2 minutes. Add in the ground beef and crumble it up in the pan as it browns. Season to taste with either fresh or dried thyme, oregano and rosemary. Once the meat is browned, you may need to drain off some excess liquid.

Sprinkle meat with flour to coat lightly and saute for about 1-2 minutes. Add a large squirt of ketchup (about 1-2 tbsps), some worcestershire sauce (about 1-2 tsps.) and a small amount of soy sauce (about 1 tsp) and stir. Then, stir in the beef stock and cook on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until the liquid becomes a nice, thick sauce - about 4-7 minutes. Add a scant 1/4 tsp cinnamon and about 1/4 tsp cumin and stir in.

Allow ingredients to cool somewhat and then fill your casserole dish(es) with a layer of the meat, a layer of carrots and finish with a layer of potatoes. You can choose to sprinkle some grated cheese on top.

Wrap and freeze or bake at 350º F for about 25 minutes or until pie is heated through. Pie can be heated directly from freezer at the same temperature until warmed through - about 45 minutes.

Makes two 9 inch round casserole dishes.

Light Rye Bread
Recipe from KitchenAid Stand Mixer Instruction and Recipe Manual, with modifications by C.A.


1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup light molasses
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons caraway seed
1 cup boiling water
2 packages active dry yeast
3/4 cup warm water (105ºF - 115ºF / 40ºC - 46ºC)
2 cups rye flour
3 1/2 - 4 cups all-purpose flour


Place honey, molasses, salt, butter, caraway seed, and boiling water in small bowl. Stir until honey dissolves. Cool to lukewarm.

Dissolve yeast in warm water in warmed mixer bowl. Add lukewarm honey mixture, rye flour and 1 cup all-purpose flour. Attach bowl and dough hook to mixer. Turn to Speed 2 and mix about 1 minute, or until well mixed. Stop and scrape bowl if necessary.

Continuing on Speed 2, add remaining all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup at a time, and mix about 2 minutes, or until dough clings to hook and cleans sides of bowl. Knead on Speed 2 about 2 minutes longer.

Place dough in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover. Let rise in warm place, free from draft, about 1 hour, or until doubled in bulk.

(note: if your kitchen is cold, you can warm the oven up a small bit at 100ºF for a few minutes and then turn the oven off and put the dough in the warmed (but not too hot!) oven to rise. Or, place the covered bowl with the dough into a larger bowl filled with some warm, but not too hot water to rise.)

Punch dough down and divide in half. Shape each half into a round loaf. Place in two greased bread pans or on two greased baking sheets. Cover. Let rise in warm place, free from draft, 45 - 60 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

Bake at 350ºF (180ºC) for 30 - 45 minutes. Cover loaves with aluminum foil for last 15 minutes if tops brown too quickly. Remove from baking sheets or bread tins immediately and cool on wire racks.

(tip: your bread should have a hollow sound if you knock gently on the top of the crust with your fist. This will help you tell if they are done.)

Sunday Tart
Bacon Cheddar Quiche with Caramelized Onions

For a 9-inch tart pan

Tart shell
1 cup (250 mL) all-purpose flour
1 tsp (5 mL) granulated sugar
1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
1/3 cup (75 mL) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
4 tsp (20 mL) white vinegar or freshly squeezed lemon juice (I used the juice of two lemons)
3 eggs
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup plain yoghurt
1/4 tsp each salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp butter
2 medium onions
2 strips bacon 
1 large tomato
1/2 cup grated cheddar 
fresh herbs like basil, oregano, thyme


For crust, place flour, sugar and salt in a food processor. Whirl until mixed. Add butter. Pulse just until coarse crumbs form. Add vinegar/lemon juice and pulse just until mixture begins to form a ball. Remove dough and gather into a ball.

Lightly oil a 9-in. (23-cm) tart pan with removable bottom (can use a pie pan too). Set pan onto a baking sheet. Place dough in centre of pan. Using the palm of your hand, press dough from middle of pan to edges. With your fingertips, press dough up sides of pan until the dough is even with the rim. Can use a small drinking glass to roll pastry smooth. Pastry will be very thin. Refrigerate for 30 min to firm.
Position rack in bottom of oven and preheat to 400F (200C)
Cook bacon in pan until cooked, but still flexible (floppy). Drain fat from pan and place bacon on paper towel to drain. Slice onions into thin rounds (1/2 cm thick). Add butter to pan and once melted, saute onions on med-low heat until translucent. Add a small amount of sugar while cooking to help caramelize the onions. Remove seeds from tomato and slice into thin rounds, set aside. To help keep the tart from becoming soggy, put onions and bacon in fridge to cool them down to room temp while your crust is cooling. Grate/shred cheese.

Lightly whisk the eggs with the milk, yoghurt, cheese, salt/pepper and herbs. Sprinkle the onions along the bottom of the tart shell. Do the same with the bacon. Place the tomato slices evenly in a single layer on top. Carefully pour in the egg mixture swirling it to fill evenly and distribute the cheese and herbs.

Bake until centre of filling is set when pan is jiggled, 35 to 40 min. Let stand 15 min. Slice and serve warm or at room temperature. Can also be wrapped and frozen or refrigerated once cool and reheated for 15 minutes in the oven at 350F.

In my first attempt, I used left-over salmon, caramelized onions and cheese and switched out the basil and oregano for chives and sage. Really, any tasty combination works so long as your ingredients do not have too much liquid.

If you don’t have a fluted tart pan with a removable bottom, use a 9-in (23-cm) aluminum or glass pie plate. Don’t place on a baking sheet; instead, bake directly on oven rack. My pan is 11 inches and it was easy to add 1/3 to the measurements for the crust and filling.

Going Dutch - Baked Beans
Maple Baked Beans with Smoked Ham Hock
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Comfort Food with further modifications by C.A.

1 lb. (about 2 1/4 cups) Navy Beans
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 Tbs. canola oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 cup pure maple syrup
2 tbsp. molasses
1 tsp. worcestershire sauce
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
1/3 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1 tsp. dry mustard or dijon mustard with seeds
1 large smoked pork hock


Rinse the beans and pick them over, discarding any misshapen beans or stones. In a large bowl, combine the beans with water to cover by 1 inch, and let stand at cool room temperature for at least 4 hours or up to 12 hours. (If the weather is warm, refrigerate the beans while soaking.)

Drain the beans, transfer to a large saucepan and add water to cover. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Set the lid askew, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the beans are barely tender, 30 to 40 minutes. Stir in the salt during the last 10 minutes of cooking.

Meanwhile, in a large fry pan over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is very tender and turns a deep golden brown, about 25 minutes. Remove from the heat.

When the beans are ready, drain them in a colander, reserving the cooking liquid. Transfer the beans to a bowl. Add the cooked onion, maple syrup, molasses, worcestershire sauce, rosemary, brown sugar and mustard and stir to combine.

Preheat an oven to 325°F.

Place the beans and sauce mixture into a dutch oven. Nestle the pork hock into the beans. Add enough of the reserved cooking liquid to barely cover the beans. Cover and bake for 2 hours. Uncover and continue baking until the cooking liquid has thickened to a glossy syrup, about 1 1/2 hours more. Let stand for 5 minutes and remove skin and bones from pork hock before serving. Serve hot. Serves 8.

Variation: Can also use use thick bacon slices, preferably apple-wood smoked. Or, bury a smoked turkey wing in the beans before you put them in the oven.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Comfort Food, by Rick Rodgers (Oxmoor House, 2009).
Further adaptations by Christina Attard (2010)