Thursday, November 25, 2010

Butternut Squash Soup

This recipe was inspired by Cheap, Healthy, Good's Butternut Squash Soup Recipe.

I bought a butternut squash and intended to either bake it or make fries. But then I stumbled on the recipe and got inspired. And was it ever worth the work!! SO FILLING, SO FRAGRANT, SO DELICIOUS!
The downside- peeling and cutting a squash is a serious pain in the ass... and even worse if you are sore from a hard workout the day before.... haha!
Anyway, here is my version of the recipe!

1 large butternut squash (peeled and chopped into pieces of random size)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion
1 tsp nutmeg
1 apple (cut into chunks)
5 cups of veggie stock (I used better than bouillon)
1 cup apple sauce
1 tbsp cinnamon

How to:
Peel and chop up squash.
Take a break. You'll be tired.
In a large pot, saute chopped up onion in olive oil and while cooking add nutmeg. 3-5 mins here.
Add squash and apple and then pour stock over. Add apple sauce and cinnamon.
Bring to boil and then simmer until squash is soft/cooked.

Then put in blender (took me 5 rounds to get through all the soup.)

Consistency.... THICK AND CREAMY.

Blender soup!!!
Put back on low on stove and ENJOY!!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Changes and Updates!

Hi Friends!

Just wanted to let you know about a few changes and updates to the blog!

First- please check out some of the new blogs and places I have added to Blogaholic and Best of Edmonton pages! I think you will really enjoy them!
Also- check out my new logo pic on those pages as well! My wonderful boyfriend Ryan made it! yay!

Second- check out the newly updated Edmonton Journal Food Section. They have all sorts of fantastic links and columns about Edmonton food! However, more importantly, they have a Edmonton Food Bloggers section, which includes yours truly!! Yay! Big thank you to Kerry at the Edmonton Journal for putting that together!

Finally- if you have any recipes, restaurant reviews, exercise ideas or anything related to this blog that you would like to contribute, please send me an email at! I would love to hear from you and would love to have others contribute to this blog!

That is all for now- have a wonderful rest of your weekend and keep warm!

Leslie :)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Diets that Time Forgot

My blog update today is free of recipes-- instead I wanted to let everyone know about a hilarious and enlightening British TV program "Diets That Time Forgot" that I watched with my dear friend Benita last week.
Benita got the show from the library and we prepared to watch the 6 episodes over two days.
picture from
The show involves 9 overweight British folks living away from their families for around a month in a castle (or what I would call a castle.. maybe it wasn't... it really doesn't matter.) They were then split into 3 groups- Victorian, Edwardian and 1920- each era had its own specific and original diet. At the end of show, they tallied the weight lost to announce a diet winner.

The Victorians- high protein/low carb diet. (that means mostly meat- and not much else.)

 The Edwardians- the "Chew Chew" diet- chewing each spoonful of food 32 times- but otherwise no food restrictions.

1920s- the first calorie restricted diet at 1200 cals a day. (mostly veggies- lots and lots of celery)

They also participated in the popular fitness trends of the day- dancing, weights, running and so on... and also had to wear the appropriate attire (ie. corsets)
I don't want to give away the results of the challenge because I think it is worth watching. I will say that I wasn't surprised by the results and I think it gives all of us in present day something to think about. The main idea that Sir Roy (the host and ultimate judge) pushed was that we have lost self discipline and need to reintroduce this into ourselves and society as a whole if we are going to win the fight against obesity.

I recommend watching this show with a good friend and a pot of tea! :o)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Papaya Chicken

 Hi Everyone! I hope you had a FANTASTIC WEEKEND (possibly the last warm one here in Edmonton... brrrrr....) Well... to warm you up I have discovered yet another fantastic recipe by the Spice Goddess!
This Papaya Chicken has the right amount of spicy and sweet and incorporates one of my favorite fruits! hoorah! Not to mention, its right up my alley- 1 pan cooking! woo hoo!

We served it with brown rice and a side of cauliflower!

Note: The only thing we didn't have was Fenugreek Seeds- anyone know what they are and where they can be purchased? I was thinking of hitting up an ethnic food store to see if they maybe had it. Not sure what the flavor is or how it would change the dish.

 We also had Beaujolais wine my sister brought back from France.
 It was superb!!
These kind of treats you have to savor!

Keep your eyes peeled over the next week for blog posts about my Convocation dinner at a Greek Restaurant and Friday Night Pierogi Dinner!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cauliflower with Sweet Potatoes

Hello Readers!
Just wanted to post this delicious new recipe (passed on from my mom, from the Spice Goddess).
The recipe: Cauliflower with Sweet Potatoes
Its a healthy Indian inspired dish that is super easy to make!!
The original is in the link, and I've added my minor changes at the bottom of the copied recipe:

2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1 onion- chopped
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 teaspoon tumeric
1 teaspoon salt
1 tomato, chopped
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
1 small head cauliflower, cut into bite size pieces

Place the oil in a large nonstick skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add the onion and ginger and cook for 4 minutes. Stir in the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric, and salt and toast for 15 seconds and then add the tomatoes and sweet potatoes, and cook until they are tender, about 12 to 15 minutes. Add the cauliflower and stir well to combine. Place a tight fitting lid on the pan and cook until the cauliflower is crisp- tender, about 5 to 8 minutes.

Changes: I added 1/2 cup water to the pan when i added the sweet potato and tomatoe, just because it needed moisture. I also added more sweet potato (I had three small ones.) and I left out the coriander seeds, because I didn't have them.


Thursday, November 4, 2010

Made it, Ate it, Loved it: Black Beans and Rice

Hi everyone!
Happy Thursday (yay!!!!)
First off: holy moly, i have been hungry ALL DAY. I decided to write down everything I ate today and quickly realized why- the only fat I'd had all day was little bit of cheese in my lunch. So i promptly opened the fridge and had a spoonful of peanut butter. feel much better :) this will hold me over until dinner (which is salmon so there is a lot of fat there.) Case in point: be aware of what you eat- and if you track your food intake, you will quickly notice trends in hunger level and energy level associated to what you have been eating.

Anyway, I wanted to get to one of the meals I made on Sunday.  After a few weeks of dinner chaos (well what I would call chaos, I dare say most people wouldn't have a problem with this) in which I would just throw random food together, often eggs, for dinner, I decided I needed to make some meals ahead of time, and plan to make some during the week by having everything on hand. It took all over 2 hours to plan, shop and make the food!

The first meal I made was Black Beans and Rice (adapted from
(FYI: I totally dropped the ball on taking pictures of this meal, but thats because it was so yummy!)

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 1 1/2 cups low sodium, low fat vegetable broth (I used Better than Boullion, and love it!) 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 1/2 cups canned black beans, drained
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a stockpot over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Add the onion and garlic and saute for 4 minutes. Add the rice and saute for 2 minutes.
  2. Add the vegetable broth, bring to a boil, cover and lower the heat and cook for 20 minutes. Add the spices and black beans.

Better than Boullion: After reading this blog post on Cheap Healthy Good, I was on the hunt for the product and was happy to find it at my local Save-On Foods. It cost just over 8 bucks, and yields a lot more stock than your typical 3 dollar container of the stuff. I'd recommend it too. As usual, CHG knows what they are talking about!
Little Jar- Big Results!

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this recipe. It is SUPER EASY and really nutritious (140 cals per 1/2 cup!) so no excuses people!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Spooky Party!

 Happy belated Halloween everyone!! Hope it was spooky, scary and full of chocolate!!! Did you dress up? I did- I was a cute clown! I went to two parties this past weekend and the one on Sunday night had some really spooky, original and delicious recipes. I just had to share! See links for recipes!

Benita and I on Saturday night!

Halloween Brain Dip

Cheddar Eyeballs 

Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Cupcakes (Yeah I know... DELICIOUS!)

 Pumpkin Honey Bread 
I really liked this bread, the honey made it different than standard pumpkin bread.
Also, real fresh pumpkin was used instead of the canned stuff! Hardcore!!

Halloween Quesadilla  
Loved this: Sweet potato and black beans in a quesadilla? Yes please!!
Snack spread!

Other recipes sans photo:
Root Beer Pulled Pork Sandwiches

While these recipes may be Halloween themed, I would eat most of them year round!
Thanks to Adele for the great food and links!!