potato+thyme frittata.

i thought you might get a kick out of the behind-the-scenes of this shot here.


and i know i promised you a certain limoncello cupcake recipe, but i wanted to be sure you all knew how to make an easy, tasty frittata to tide yourselves over until then. ¬†ūüėČ

i make them differently every time, depending on my mood/ingreds on hand/etc.

this one was particularly tasty!

Potato + Thyme Frittata

[you will need a large, oven-safe skillet]

preheat oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit.

sautée 4 red potatoes [scrubbed but not peeled], quartered and thinly sliced, in olive oil until tender.

isn’t the word “saut√©e” such a pretty one? ¬†i love saying “saut√©e”.


ok, i’m done now. ¬†wait.



while the potatoes are in the skillet [sautéeing], whisk 8 eggs, about 1/4 cup heavy cream [or half & half], several cracks of black pepper, a few generous pinches kosher salt, and the leaves from three sprigs of fresh thyme.

once potatoes are tender, pour egg mixture over the potatoes and let cook for just a minute.

remove from the stovetop and place in the preheated oven.  bake for 15 minutes, or until golden and set.

i loooove to top my frittatas with crumbles of goat cheese and sometimes a drizzle of Sriracha.

frittatas make GREAT leftovers for lunch.  and dinner.  and for a snack in between lunch and dinner.


ok, now i’m really done this time.




once upon a lunch

once upon a lunch, originally uploaded by iamchanelle.

Once upon a [lunch]time, in a kingdom far far away from some people, and not so far away from others, there lived a girl who was very, very, incredibly, unbelievably hungry. It was nearing twelve noon and she had not yet eaten a morsel of food that day. Famished and weak, she crawled into her kitchen, only to find not much more than a morsel of bread in her pantry. Looking further, she discovered an onion, and a handful of small sweet peppers. Grabbing a few sprigs of fresh thyme, a pat of butter and three eggs, she set to work. Fueled by the promise of nourishment, she thinly sliced the onions and peppers and caramelized them in butter until deep brown and soft.

In a small bowl, she whisked the eggs with a little cream, salt and pepper and cooked them over medium heat in a small skillet as she would an omelet. The aromas filling her kitchen were almost too delicious to bear, but she knew in mere moments her hunger would be satiated. She spread two slices of bread with the last remnants of butter and toasted them until golden. In the final moments of broiling the bread, she flipped one slice over and placed thin pieces of smoked gouda cheese upon it.
At long last, everything was ready to come together. Removing the bread from the oven, she spooned the caramelized onions and peppers on one slice, slid the omelet over the onions, sprinkled with thyme leaves, and placed the last bread slice on the very top.
She then placed the beautiful sandwich on a pretty white plate, made a salad of mixed greens and dressed it with olive oil and balsamic vinegar with just a little sprinkling of fleur de sel.
She then searched her kingdom high and low for the perfect backdrop for which she could stage her lunch for all to behold. Taking a few moments to adjust white balance and ISO levels, she photographed her masterpiece over and over again until she took the perfect shot, though she was nearly dead from hunger.

Once satisfied with the finer art of presenting delicious morsels, she TURNED INTO A TERRIBLE OGRE and DEVOURED THE ENTIRE THING.

And she lived happily ever after.

Lemon Basil Fettuccine with Kalamata Olives

As promised, the amazing meal of amazingness I enjoyed with my good friend the other night….


This meal was made possible by another friend who recently allowed us to come to her beautiful home and share in her abundant citrus bounty (thanks, lauri!!!).

I, of course, put the kids to work that day.

But I think they didn’t mind too much.


Flash forward to this week, and with all that wonderful lemon juice now stored in my freezer, this particular recipe choice was an easy one. ¬†The simple “sauce” or dressing is more like it, consists of straight up lemon juice and olive oil and parmesan. ¬†The End. ¬† Does a simple weeknight supper get ANY better than that I ask you? ¬†No.

Here, my dear readers, is the recipe:


Lemon Basil Fettuccine with Kalamata Olives

taken from Flavors, and hardly changed at all because she’s awesome: by Donna Hay

1 pound fettuccine

1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (or more to taste)

3 tablespoons good quality fruity olive oil (also, or more to taste)

1/2 cup grated parmesan

1 cup basil leaves, torn if they are rather large

1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives

sea or kosher salt

freshly cracked black pepper


Boil the pasta in salted water until al dente and drain.

Meanwhile, in a large serving bowl, whisk the lemon juice and olive oil together, then add the parmesan, basil, olives, salt and freshly cracked black pepper and stir to combine.  

When the pasta is drained, add to the serving bowl and toss with the dressing. (I added a bit more lemon juice and olive oil after mixing with the pasta, as it was not strong enough for me, and was also generous with the olives.)

Serve immediately and ooooh and aaaaah over the bright and comforting flavours about to hit your mouth.


This was enjoyed with a chilled glass of Jeckel Vineyards Gravelstone Chardonnay, many thanks to Luz.


Welcome in the summer months with this dish, and be sure to enjoy it in the company of good friends, new or old. ¬†It’ll leave a good taste in your mouth.





I’m coming around. (Mediterranean Oven Omelette)

What a season this has been.  Baking, wrapping, shopping, more wrapping, party attending, happiness, sadness, travels, more baking and cooking and even more wrapping and then getting a cold.
I have been down for a few days am finally coming around {achoo!}.  I think.  {achoo!  sniff.}
I actually made breakfast this morning, as opposed to guiltily shoving some pre-packaged, preservative-laden something or other into the kid’s hands and then crawling back under the covers. ¬†It was sooooo good. ¬†The breakfast. ¬†Not the preservatives.
And I washed my hands, I promise.
The inspiration for this dish came from one of my favourite food blogs, Simply Breakfast, specifically, from¬†this photo. ¬†I left a comment asking for the “recipe” and Jen posted it (thanks, Jen – you rock!). ¬†I have since come up with several of my own variations, and as there is no official name, I have titled today’s creation a
 Oven Omelette
Serves 2
  • 4 large eggs
  • dash of milk or cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • dash cayenne
  • sea salt to taste
  • 10 cracks of fresh black pepper
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced or pressed
  • 2 marinated artichoke hearts, chopped (since they traditionally come in quarters or halves, use your best judgement: approximately a half cup)
  • 1 roasted red pepper (from a jar), chopped
  • small amount of feta cheese, crumbled
  • fresh oregano, for garnish, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees f.
Whisk eggs, milk or cream and spices together.  Add remaining ingredients and whisk together.
Pour into a shallow baking dish and bake for about 20 minutes, until set.
Serve immediately, topped with extra feta and fresh oregano, if desired.


Pssst! Want to know what to do with all those LEFTOVERS??!! (Turkey Wild rice soup)

Wondering what to do with all those turkey leftovers? 
Tired of reheated, overheated, overrated leftovers?  Nudge, nudge, know what I mean?
Did the weather outside turn from a warm and cozy 97 degrees to a frigid and withering 65 degrees overnight? ¬†Are you typing this post in thermal underwear? ¬†Oh, wait, not you….
Say no MORE!
Turkey and Wild Rice Soup
This recipe is my very own, and adapted only from memory of a really, really good bowl (or three) of soup made by my mom-in-law last year around this time. ¬†I wanted to make some soup with all our leftover smoked turkey the other night, and my mom-in-law was not home right then for me to ask for her recipe, so I decided to try creating my own. ¬†Nudge, nudge, know what I mean…say no MORE! ¬†
  • 2 small onions, diced
  • 2-4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup wild rice
  • 4 cups chicken or turkey broth, divided
  • 6 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed and stems discarded
  • 1 small bunch parsley, leaves finely chopped. ¬†(reserve a small bit for garnish)
  • kosher salt to taste
  • 3-4 cups shredded turkey (let me say that our smoked turkey made this soup REALLY stand out – but whatever way your birdie was prepared, it will be good in this soup.)
  • 2 cups milk ¬†(or you could add 2 additional cups broth, if you prefer no dairy)
Saute onions in a large pot for a few minutes over medium-low heat, until just tender.  Add garlic for the last minute. 
Turn up heat to medium-high and add rice.  Saute 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly.  
Pour in 2 cups broth and turn heat down to low.  Cover and simmer for 20- 40 minutes, until rice has absorbed all the liquid and is tender. (Check your package of rice for directions.)
Uncover and add thyme, parsley, salt, and turkey.  Bring to a boil over medium heat.  Add milk and stir until bubbling.  
Serve with fresh parsley sprinkled over top.
And that should be the end of your leftovers, nudge, nudge, know what I mean?

THE! Event! My Thanksgiving Game Plan!

Ok, I should be baking or cleaning something, but I wanted to get my thoughts in order before I start the final push.  So here I sit, procrastinating composing a productive list. 

  • 11 Adults (My parents – all of ’em, including the divorced ones. Together. ¬†In my house. And My aunt and uncle. ¬†And my stepdad’s sister, too. ¬†Oh, and me and The Husband. ¬†Woo hoo!)
  • 7 Not-adults (My bros and sisters and my kiddos.)
  • Ice water
  • Good Earth Iced Tea
  • Coffee
  • Italian Sodas
  • Stella Artois Lager
  • Fat Tire Ale
For Appetizers:
For Main Course:
  • Trader Joe’s Costal Merlot
  • Bear’s Lair Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Outback Chase Cabernet Sauvignon
  • More Beaujolais Nouveau!
For Desserts:
  • Asti Tosti Champagne
  • The yummiest French Bread Stuffing ever created, as made by my mom. ¬†One of my moms.
  • Uncle Bill’s Famous Cornbread Stuffing
  • Sherried Sweet Potatoes (no mallows here…)
  • Garlic Green Beans
  • A Great Big Giant Awesome Really Good Salad
  • Smashed Red Potatoes
  • Homemade Cranberry Sauce
  • Warm Rolls
  • Butter
  • Gravy
  • Two Brined, Rosemary Garlic Smoked Birdies
And Just For fun:
  • A little surprise, too, but some of my fam read this blog, so mum’s the word for now, suckas.
And NO, I am NOT doing ALL this all by myself.  
Everyone is bringing something wonderful to the table, and I am so excited to see my family pull it all together like this.  Kind of monumental for me, in a way.  We are all actually getting along and working together!  After 26 years of NOT!  And now we are about to be all under my roof! Happy!  Together!  How is the weather?! 
And somehow, it’s not weird for me. ¬†
Something to be thankful for.
So, what remains to be done between today, Tuesday, November 20th, and THE! EVENT! on Thursday, November 22nd:
  • Clean my house top to bottom: bathrooms, dusting, vacuuming and mopping floors, sweeping patios and clearing out the doggie doodoo (ick).
  • Sew the canopy for our outside seating.
  • Purchase stakes and hardware for hanging the canopy.
  • Pull all the decor, dishes and linens together: Platters, Serving Bowls, Plates, Utensils, Assemble gypsy lanterns, flowers in wine bottles, etc.

  • Pick up tables from one house, (thanks, mom and dad!) chairs from another friend and second smoker from still another friend (The Husband to do this, phew!)
  • Brine the Birdies Wednesday A.M.
  • Smoke the birdies Wednesday P.M. (The Husband’s Speciality!)
  • Make-ahead the appies:
  • Spiced Nuts
  • Gougeres
  • Crackers
  • Make ahead the cranberry sauce.
  • Make Ahead the desserts. ¬†ALL of them.
  • Set up the Appetizer Table with a very special vintage tablecloth given to us by a very special auntie. ¬†ūüôā
  • Set up the Main Course Buffet on the Kitchen Island.
  • Set up the Outdoor Seating: ¬†chairs, tableclohs, place settings, flowers, candles, silverware and napkins, placecards, light gypsy lanterns.
  • Pass Out Cold.
Wish me luck, and the same to you in all your preparations!
I am really excited!  And overtired!  And excited!

[Proven√ßal] Salad of the gods

A little history: I am a tad bit obsessed with all things French.

I have always been in love with everything about France – I am even part French – but not enough to have grown up speaking it, or to have ever been there (yet). Just enough to have it run through my blood and be imprinted on my…heart.
My dream is to one day very soon (hey honey!) go to France and immerse myself in the food, the art, the scenery, the food, the food, the Eiffel Tower, the history, the architecture, the villages and the food.
I even had a dream the other night that I had (finally!) arrived in France, made my way to a patesserie and sampled something made with apricots, and then found myself standing at the base of the Eiffel Tower, crying, I was so happy to be there.
Then I woke up.
I hate that.

To make up for that little tease, the fates sent me this month’s edition of Gourmet Magazine, and within those pages my Francophile eyes fixed on these words: “Proven√ßal Salad”.

Really, Gourmet, you had me at Provençal. And then you added Salad. Heaven.

Provençal Salad (of the gods)
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, July 2007 Issue, page 70
Serves 4 (as a main course)

Side note: The original recipe called for 12 ounces of imported tuna packed in olive oil, drained, to be added in the final step with the eggs. I personally do not care for fish at all ( I KNOW – HOW could I be even just a little French and not like fish? Sorry.), so I simply omitted this step. You could just as easily add it back in. Also, the vinegar originally called for was actually champagne vinegar, which I had a hard time locating within a decent price range, so I went with white wine vinegar instead. Just as satisfactory, I am sure.

1/4 cup white wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon Mustard (get the good stuff!)
2 large garlic cloves, pressed
1/2 teaspoon sugar
pinch kosher or sea salt
several grinds of fresh black pepper
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil


1 lb green beans, trimmed and snapped in half
1 lb small Yukon Gold potatoes (by small, this means try to find some only a couple inches in diameter)
1 large tomato cubed, or 12 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives
3 tablespoons rinsed and drained capers
1/2 cup coarse chopped flat-leaf parsley (about 1/2 bunch)
4 hard-boiled eggs, quartered
(To hard boil eggs: place eggs in a small saucepan with just enough water to cover and set to medium-high heat. Once water comes to a boil, set timer for eight minutes. Once eight minutes have passed, remove eggs from heat and rinse under cold water to stop cooking.)

Set a large pot of salted water to boil.

Meanwhile, To Make the Dressing:
Whisk together vinegar, mustard, garlic, sugar, salt and pepper. Add oil in a slow stream, whisking constantly, until oil is emulsified. Set aside.

To Make The Salad:
Once the water has come to a boil in the large pot, cook the green beans, uncovered, until tender – about 6 minutes. Transfer to a bowl of ice water (or rinse under cold water in a colander) to stop cooking. Drain and pat dry.

Add potatoes to boiling water and simmer, uncovered, about 20 minutes until tender. Drain. Halve potatoes while warm and toss with green beans, tomatoes, olives, capers, parsley and dressing in a large bowl. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste and top with eggs. (And tuna, if desired).

This was so wonderful, I made it twice. In a row.
I made the second batch for my BFF. Because best friends must share in things this good. Plus, best friends make best brownies (sans one egg and baking powder and with the addition of 1/2 cup walnut halves) to go with it.

Perhaps someday soon, I can eat something like this at the base of my beloved Tower Eiffel, or in the lavender fields of Provence, maybe even at the table of my favourite author.

In the interim, this brings me pretty darn close.