Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Family and Wine and All Things Sweet

Hi everyone! Today was such a wonderful day. The other Flanagan's have arrived in Parksville, and this little condo has turned into one loud, rambunctious place within an afternoon! And I am so, so happy about it. Today was filled with great food, great family, and great (and hilarious) stories.

My day started off with a plain old breakfast, a cinnamon raisin bagel with cream cheese, and a good glass of eggnog.

I'm not a huge breakfast person, somedays I skip straight to lunch!

After breakfast we went into town quickly before everyone arrived to pick up some more groceries, and I got a quick sub from Quizzies to tide me over from dinner, no picture though...

Finally the family was here! And we all pitched in making dinner as we drank yummy wine and (more) caesars. I helped out making some bruschetta.

I am quite fond of anything garlic, so I thought it was appropriate to take a lil' photo of the thing itself...

Tasty fresh flavors ready to be tossed up and spooned onto little crostini.

I popped a whole wheat baguette into the oven set on broil before I spooned the bruschetta over it so it could crisp up nicely without getting soggy. Before I put the bread in the oven, I drizzled a little olive oil over it, and some S & P.

Here is the bruschetta topped crostini ready to go back into the oven for a quick minute to melt up the parmesan sprinkled on top.

Melted cheese...always amazing. There was a ton of garlic packed into these bad boys, and they were extremely tasty! More of an appetizer...but we ate them with dinner anyways.

My cousin, Tatomme, is vegetarian, so my Mom whipped up a little number from the Hippy Gourmet cookbook (we finally used it!) It was so good!

Here's the exact recipe from "Hippie Gourmet":

"Wild" Rice and Steamed Veggies

This recipe gets a bit wild with the addition of an entire head of garlic. Ginger juice brings up the heat and the flavor. You can buy ginger juice in health food or some high-end cooking stores.

Serves 4

2 cups short-grain brown rice
4 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 head garlic, peeled and sliced
2 cups broccoli, including tops and peeled stems
1 medium zucchini, sliced
1 medium yellow crookneck squash, sliced
3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
1 package (8 ounces) seasoned tofu (any flavor)
1 teaspoon ginger juice

Place the rice in a dry pan over medium-high heat to toast.
Mix constantly until you hear a slight crackling sound, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the water and salt. Stir.
Bring to a boil, boil for 1 minute, then reduce the heat to low and cover.
Let this simmer for 45 minutes.

Heat the sesame oil in a small pan over a medium flame.
Add the garlic and stir until golden brown.
Remove from heat, and strain the garlic. Reserve the oil.

Add enough water to the bottom of a pot with a steamer insert to cover by about 1 inch.
Bring to a boil, and put the vegetables in the steamer.
Cover and cook for about 7 minutes or until vegetables are steamed to your liking.

Add half of the reserved sesame oil to a small pan, then add the tofu.
Cook until just heated - 2 or 3 minutes - flipping once.
Slice the tofu into thin pieces after it is cooked.
In a serving dish, layer the rice, 3, tofu, and garlic.
Sprinkle with ginger juice.


We also had a little bit of BBQ'd chicken with dinner for a bit more protein for all the non-vegetarians...

Dinner was delish and really healthy!

I have to say my favorite part of dinner was the bruschetta...honestly, I LOVE garlic!

After dinner everyone had tea and coffee and we pulled out a nice little tray of sweet things.

The tray consisted of: imperial squares made by my mama, little dried fruit bars made by my mama, bought nanaimo bars, and delicious almond butter balls made by aunty Daphne!

So pretty and so incredible.

That was it for today, lots of love and lots of food! I'm sure there will be plenty of photos for tomorrow...two food bloggers under one roof and about 6 cameras to the 8 of us!




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