Monday, March 26, 2012

My favourite dessert

I love dessert.  It is the reason I learned how to bake.  I can still remember my first batch of cookies - how I didn't measure the flour properly and they just turned into one big cookie.  But I was 7 or 8 and at that age what is better than one giant cookie?
Since that time I have made a lot of cookies and contrary to the title of this post I would be hard pressed to come up with a favourite dessert.  This one would surely make my Top Ten.
Lemon Meringue Pie.  What's not to love?  Lemon-y filling that's not too sweet.  Fluffy as a cloud meringue.  Flaky buttery crust.  Mmmmmm!
I had the good luck of finding some Meyer lemons at the store the other day.  If you can't find these, regular lemons will do. 

Lemon Meringue Pie

1 1/2 c. all purpose flour
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 c. cold unsalted butter, diced
1 egg
1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar

Put dry ingredients into food processor.  Pulse to blend.  Add cold butter chunks and process until its a rough crumbly texture and you can still see bits of butter.  Add egg and vinegar and process just until dough starts to come together.  Shape dough into a disc, wrap and refrigerate for an hour.  
Preheat oven to 400 F.  On lightly floured surface roll out dough until its about a 1/4-inch thick.  Line a 9-inch pie plate with dough.  Tuck in the rough edges and crimp with your fingers.  Line pastry with aluminum foil and weigh down with pie weights, dry beans or rice.  (This is called blind baking.  I have a jar of mixed dry beans in my cupboard that I use for this.  If you are planning on keeping the beans for re-use, make sure you label them!) Bake for 10 min, reduce heat to 375F and bake 15 min. more.  Remove foil and weights and bake 10 min. more, until center of pie shell has dried out.  
Cool completely before filling. 

1 1/4 c. sugar
1 1/2 c. cold water
5 Tbsp. cornstarch
5 egg yolks, reserve those whites
pinch of salt
zest of 1 lemon
1/2 c. fresh lemon juice, about 2 lemons
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter

Whisk sugar, water and cornstarch in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Whisk in egg yolks and salt and cook over low heat for 5 min., whisking constantly.  Increase heat to medium and, still whisking, cook until filling is glossy and very thick.  Remove from heat and stir in lemon zest and juice and butter.  Pour into cooled crust and refrigerate until set, about 4 hours. 

5 egg whites
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch ( I don't always add this)
1/3 c. sugar

Turn on your broiler. 
Whip egg whites with cream of tartar and cornstarch until foamy.  While whipping, gradually add sugar. Continue beating until whites hold a stiff peak.  Dollop meringue over lemon filling.  Using upward sweeping motions make pretty little peaks that will get nice and browned.  
Stick whole pie under broiler and watch carefully.  You don't want that meringue to burn!  It should just brown lightly, like the outside of a perfectly toasted marshmallow.  Chill pie or eat right away.  

 Hope you enjoy this pie! xo

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Right now I'm loving...

....that the sun is finally shining!  It felt like spring today!


....the sound of the Mister playing 'Sleepwalk' on the ukelele.  I love that song.
....the tiredness in my legs from a long walk in the sun.
....the little lacy bonnet I just finished for a sweet little soon-to-be-one-year old.


....the smell of  chicken roasting in the oven.
....this blog.  Joy is hilarious and her recipes are amazing! littlest bean bouncing around in my belly. 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Its almost done....finally!

Some of you may know that we renovated our house a couple of years back.  We have been living in it because, well....its liveable.  The only things left to do were lay the hardwood floors and finish the bathroom.  The sink and toilet worked but our beautiful tub sat in the corner, un-plumbed and un-tiled.  We had all the tiles but neither the Mister or I know the first thing about tiling.  And we were unrealistically optimistic in thinking we would have the time to do it ourselves. 


Enter my awesome brother.  He really is one of the most fantastic people I know.  He owns his own drywall company and in his day to day he meets a lot of different people.  A lot of these people work in the trades as well.  So he hooks us up with a bloke who is a stone mason by trade ( The guy used to work in England restoring old stone churches!) but also knows a heck of a lot about tiling a bathroom. 
He has been tiling our bathroom. 


It is beautiful.  

Tomorrow there is a bit of touch up to be done and then it is on to grouting.  It is almost done!  I will share more photos once its all done.
I can hardly wait to have a hot-water-tank-draining-soak in my new bath.  xo

Friday, March 2, 2012

A Finished Item!

I finished knitting my first baby item!  It is a little wool vest made from a vintage Sirdar pattern.  The knitting was really mindless ( An entire sweater in 3x1 rib?!  On #3 needles?  What was I thinking?!?!) and turned out really cute. The picture makes it look really wonky for some reason but it doesn't look like that in real life.

 It is sooooo tiny!  I have forgotten how little babies are!
 I seamed up the vest and immediately started on the next item.  Can you guess what it is?  Here is a hint:  Its a Surprise.
The yarn is luscious hand dyed merino in a worsted weight from Lorna's Laces.  I cannot believe how soft it is!  I want to knit a blanket out of it for myself!
Off to feed my kiddo who is home sick today.  Hope you all have a lovely weekend! xo

Thursday, March 1, 2012


At my daughter's school they have Sushi Day every Friday.  She had to miss school one Friday and was very upset about missing Sushi Day.  So we had our own sushi day at home - it was amazing!  I used to be a cook at a Japanese restaurant and the girls who rolled sushi taught me so many invaluable things about making rolls.  The smell of the vinegar-y rice and the nori is one of my favourite smells and oddly nostalgic. 
We made some veggie rolls with omelet, cucumber, carrot and avocado. 

We also had some hot smoked salmon and black sesame.  Lil'G was in charge of filling the rolls and I would roll them up. 

 We absolutely pigged out!

Such a super fun day! xo