have a sandwich

November 25, 2011

It’s not Thanksgiving anymore. I’m still in England. You have a massive amount of leftover turkey sitting in your kitchen. These are all probable truths.

You know what I’d do? I’d make a sandwich. Here are some stellar leftover turkey sandwich ideas from the webs. Get your face round one of them. It’ll be mega.

Turkey Cobb Sandwich

Barbecue Pulled-Turkey Sandwiches

Monte Cristo Sandwich

Turkey, Cheddar, and Green Apple Sandwich

Panes con Pavo (Salvadoran Turkey Sandwich)

Quesadillas with Chutney and Brie

Turkey and Cranberry Chutney Sandwich

p.s. My personal favourite simple combo = turkey, cold stuffing, cranberry sauce in between two slices. Chomp.

Still hungry? Have some cake.

Bottom image from Martha Stewart.

fancy green bean casserole

September 15, 2010

This green bean casserole is a fresh take on the Midwestern classic, but it loses none of its creamy, buttery taste and texture.

You won’t find any cream of mushroom soup or canned fried onions here, I’m afraid.  This casserole isn’t really all that fancy but it does omit those crazy ingredients and instead focus on whole, real ingredients to create something pretty delightful.

Butter, shallots, shiitake mushrooms, fresh parmesan, more butter….you see where this is going. Cayenne pepper and nutmeg give the Béchamel-type sauce a real depth that I’m pretty sure you can’t get in a can.

I’m convinced that the smell of onions sauteing in butter is one of the greatest smells of all time. That, coupled with the beautiful 80 degree, September sunshine beaming into my kitchen made cooking this a truly great experience.

We got these green beans at the farmers’ market last weekend and they were still perfectly crisp and fresh a week later. Love.

Fancy Green Bean Casserole

adapted from Martha Stewart


Serves 8

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for dish
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems trimmed, quartered
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 pinch grated nutmeg
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 4 shallots, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch rings


  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Add onion, and saute until it begins to soften, about 4 minutes. Add bell pepper and mushrooms, and cook until softened and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Set aside to cool.
  2. Prepare an ice bath: Fill a large bowl with ice and water; set aside. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil. Add beans, and cook until bright green and just tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Drain, and plunge into ice bath to stop cooking. When cooled, toss drained beans with mushroom mixture; set aside.
  3. Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add 1/4 cup flour, whisk constantly until mixture begins to turn golden, about 2 minutes. Pour in milk gradually, and continue whisking until mixture has thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in cayenne, nutmeg, and the remaining teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Remove from heat, and let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Pour over beans, and toss to combine.
  4. Butter a 9-by-13-inch glass or ceramic baking pan. Spread half the green-bean mixture over the bottom. Sprinkle on half the grated Parmesan, and spread with the remaining green beans. Combine the remaining Parmesan and the breadcrumbs, and sprinkle over casserole.
  5. Heat canola oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Toss shallot rings with the remaining 2 tablespoons flour. Fry the shallots in batches, turning frequently, until golden brown. Transfer to paper towels to drain.
  6. Heat broiler, positioning rack about 8 inches from heat. Cook casserole, covered, until mixture is bubbly and heated through, about 10-20 minutes. Uncover, and cook until top is golden brown, about 30 seconds. Sprinkle fried shallots over top, and serve immediately.

Hot, creamy, buttery, perfect. Eat it as soon as it comes out of the oven to taste it in all its piping-hot cheesy glory. Yum.

For more “fancy” takes on American classics, you might want to try:

> posh mac and cheese

> eggplant parmesan

This weekend was ridiculously beautiful in Minneapolis – low 60s and blue, sunny skies – which meant I spent a lot of time outside getting all I could out of it. I biked, I had one of the most amazingly glorious runs of my life, and I grilled! Yeah, it was warm enough to fire up the grill so we went and got a whole striped sea bass to bbq!

If dead creatures make you squeamish, turn away now.

Otherwise, meet Barry, or Baz, the Bass.

The fishmonger gutted and descaled our fish for us which meant we just had to make indentations in him and season him with olive oil and salt and pepper:

I prepared some fresh herbs for a side dish while Dan did manly things that made me squirm. Fresh thyme, parsley and some lemon wedges…

Which complemented these New Potatoes and sauteed onions (along with a good knob of butter). They were mouth watering if I do say so myself!

Meanwhile, at the grill…


Followed by…


And this was dinner!

I’m not really a big fish person if I’m honest so I only eat it every once in a while but this was blooming delightful! The fish just fell apart in your mouth and the salty potatoes and fresh-tasting spinach went really well.

Have you ever prepared a whole fish to eat and if so, what?
I once did a similar thing for my parents in England but with Sole. That was really good too! You can’t go wrong with s&p; and some olive oil in my opinion!