This week, while our friends in the northeast were battening down hatches and contending with a ‘historic snowstorm,’ spring came to us here in the northwest.
This isn’t to rub it in; we’re not revelling in these spring-like temperatures yet. It’s nice, but it feels a little off – the mountains are missing ‘snow-caps’ and the magnolia tree across the street has started flowering; would it bloom again when spring comes?
Yesterday I peeled off my jacket halfway on my way to work, and I’ve been sleeping with the windows cracked open, my skin doesn’t remember what winter feels like anymore.
Waking up to the soothing pitter-patter of rain is the perfect way to start Sundays in winter.
It sets the mood for lounging in your pyjamas all day; it’s soothing, idyllic and rejuvenating.
This type of day calls for a special breakfast. Yes, special… but easy and unfussy.
So that the rest of the morning can be spent lingering and savouring the nothingness.
I saved this yoghurt banana bread recipe for one of these special Sundays; I love the simplicity and the little extra that comes with the addition of yoghurt in the bread.
Special doesn’t have to mean complicated…
We’ve eaten our fair share of sriracha sauce over the last year.
We make these roasted potatoes hash and douse them in sriracha and ketchup – it’s SO good!
Then there’s the classic avocado and sriracha toast, which I must admit, was the reason why I got my first bottle of sriracha.
We swirl it in soups and stews now for that extra zing, and use it in marinades and sauces… it’s a versatile condiment; hot and spicy with a touch of sweetness.
Here’s a fascinating short video about its origin and the man who made it popular in North America.
During these dark cold months, I relish simple nutritious meals that can be prepped in advance; it’s usually so dark by the time I get off work that I love the convenience of not having to cook.
Here’s where meals like this quinoa, peas and sriracha roasted fennel come into play.
A few months ago, we were picking up packages in Point Roberts when we came upon a lonely little apple tree on the side of the road with few bright red fruits dangling off its branches.
Of course, we ambled our way through the dry bushes to pick them but then debated whether we could bring apples (from Point Roberts, since technically you can’t bring apples from Washington State) across the border, so we picked just one for our journey home.
It wasn’t the tastiest; it was tart and somewhat astringent but we ate that apple like the best we’d ever had.
That weekend we bought a sack of apples from the store having convinced ourselves that we needed to snack on apples more… but occasionally, I would think of the little apple tree by that sleepy road.
Its wild fruit would fall and become food for birds and wildlife in the area – perhaps that is its purpose.
This was our first homemade gnocchi, made on a blustery dark Sunday afternoon.
When I’ve been curious about women (and men) who make their own gnocchi, I imagined little old grandmas in faraway picturesque Italian countrysides, in sunny kitchens overlooking spetacular Mediterranean farmlands and vineyards, and rolling hills.
Yet, here we were in a tiny kitchen on a gloomy rain soaked street making gnocchi.
It was like baking for me; the process of mixing, kneading, rolling and cutting of dough, and finally, waiting patiently for the gnocchi to rise to the top of the bubbling pot of water… felt soothing.
It’s almost cathartic, especially on a moody day while music filters in from the living room; a resonant crooner sings of church, when really it’s a metaphor for sexuality.