Pumpkin Pomegranate Cake

I made this for date night on Sunday, loosely based off this recipe but also inspired by this one — both of which I found after googling “what to do with one cup of pumpkin purée”. I slaughtered two pie pumpkins a week or two ago, and had a cup left over unfrozen after making some other things (there is a lot more in the freezer!). I had also bought pomegranates (oh, be still my heart) with our last grocery shop, and things just came together.

The result is a pleasingly moist and light coffee cake. It’s not too sweet, and the pomegranate seeds give it a little extra oompf in the fun-to-eat department. I’d make it again.


– 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
– 1/2 cup brown sugar
– 1 tsp cinnamon
– 1/2 tsp ground ginger
– 1/4 tsp ground cloves
– 1 tsp baking powder
– 1/2 tsp baking soda
– 1/4 tsp sea salt
– seeds of 1 large pomegranate, about 1 cup
– 1 cup pumpkin purée
– 2 eggs
– 1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted

1. Combine flour, sugar, spices, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in medium mixing bowl.

2. Add pomegranate seeds, eggs, and butter/margarine and mix well.

3. Pour into greased 8×8 pan. Bake at 350F until a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean, about 30 minutes.

Chocolate Rice Pudding (Dairy-Free, Stovetop)

This chocolate rice pudding whips up quickly and is the perfect fall dessert — especially when served warm! The chocolate flavour is mild; add more cocoa powder if you’d like more of a punch. I am particularly fond of the combination of cinnamon with chocolate, but feel free to leave it out if you’re not a fan.


– 1.5-2 cups cooked rice (mine was Chinese takeout leftovers)
– 2 eggs
– 1/3 cup sugar
– 1.5 Tbsp cocoa powder
– a pinch salt
– 1 tsp cinnamon
– 1 tsp vanilla extract
– 2 cups almond milk
– optional: raisins, nuts, etc.

1. Put the rice into a large pot and set aside.

2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, cocoa powder, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla.

3. While mixing, add the almond milk about 1/2 cup at a time, until combined.

4. Add the wet ingredients to the rice. Add raisins, nuts, etc. if desired. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, for 6-10 minutes until it reaches the desired thickness.

Serve warm. Or allow to cool and serve cold;it’s your kitchen.

Recipe: Summer Salad

I got asked to bring a salad to a dinner yesterday night, and decided that I would like to do something watermelon-based, since they’re in season right now (so delicious and so cheap!). I browsed a few recipes online and then, from general principles, came up with my own:

Yesterday’s leftovers, aka today’s lunch.


– 1/2 medium seedless watermelon, cubed
– 2 english cucumbers, diced
– 1 yellow bell pepper, diced
– 1/2 red onion, finely diced
– 1.5 cups or so matchstick-cut carrots
– 1/2 to 1/3 cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
– lime vinaigrette: juice of ~2 limes, olive oil, honey, sea salt, black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a large serving bowl and refrigerate until needed. Toss with vinaigrette just before serving. Serves ~10.

Recipe: Twice-Baked Baby Teething Biscuits

Anselm has been teething for… let’s see… going on four months now (with nary a tooth in sight, I might add) and I thought I would make him some teething biscuits to chomp on. I found this site for a bunch of base recipes; the below is my modification.


– 1 cup flour
– 1 cup dry baby cereal
– 1 4-oz jar baby fruit puree
– 3 Tbsp oil
– ice water

1. Stir together flour and cereal. (You can use white, whole-wheat, or half-and-half for the flour — and similarly, plain or flavoured infant cereal. I used 1/2 cup oats and 1/2 cup rice.)

2. Add puree and oil, and mix in.

3. Slowly add ice water, until dough pulls away from the bowl and starts to form ball.

4. Spoon dough into piping bag (or ziplock bag — seal it as airtightly as possible and then clip off one corner). Pipe dough into baby-graspable logs on parchment paper.

5. Bake at 425F for 12 minutes until biscuits are puffy and lightly browned.

6. Remove from oven and let cool approximately five minutes. Keep your oven on!

7. Flip biscuits. Return to oven and bake an additional 6-8 minutes until hard. (Er… harder. They don’t really get hard; further tweaking might be necessary here.)

And there you have it! As always, use the sense God gave you. Cool completely before handing to baby. Do not allow baby to consume biscuits unsupervised or while lying down. Et cetera, et cetera.

Stir-Fry Salmon with Gnocchi

I’ve been watching a lot of Chopped recently. It’s nice because it’s formulaic enough that I can throw it on while I’m washing dishes or whatever and be able to track with it without having to watch the screen the whole time. It’s also inspiring, in a way: if these chefs can make decent, creative meals out of zany ingredients, surely I can make decent, creative meals out of the normal food in my cupboards, right?

So here’s one I came up with, which handily used up the last two salmon fillets that had been hanging around forever, and a package of gnocchi (spellcheck suggestion: chignon), ditto. Now gnocchi is, of course, Italian, and I did asian-esque seasonings on the fish… but hey, look, it’s fusion… or whatever.


1. Buy a package of gnocchi and cook according to directions. Bam.

Salmon Stir-Fry:
– 1-2 Tbsp olive oil
– 1-2 Tbsp soy sauce
– 1 onion, finely chopped
– 4 cloves garlic, minced
– 2 fillets salmon, cut into stir-fry sized strips
– spices: sea salt, black pepper, chili powder, ginger (fresh or dried)
– a good squeeze of lime juice

1. Combine oil and soy sauce in a large skillet over medium heat.
2. Add onion and garlic and sauté until onion is beginning to get transluscent
3. Add salmon to skillet
4. Season liberally with salt, pepper, chili powder, and ginger. Cook, stirring frequently, until salmon is done.
5. Remove from heat and give it a squeeze of lime.
6. Serve warm, over gnocchi.

We also made this with cod the other day — that was good, too, but the salmon was better. Serve with a green side salad.

Black Bean Brownies (GF/DF)

Being suddenly dairy-free (thanks, little Anselm!) means that I’ve been unable to indulge my sweet tooth with my usual post-Communion doughnuts and similar treats. In fact, the other day we were out walking and stopped in at the town bakery, and then I realised that there was literally nothing there I could eat. So I just smelled the air for a while and departed, glumly.

Anyway! For the two very good reasons of 1) wanting to convince myself that there are still many delicious things I can eat and 2) wanting brownies, I made me some dairy-free black bean brownies. The post title probably told you that was coming.

The original recipe is here but I messed around with it significantly (as one does). The recipe with my variations is below.

The verdict?They’re… okay. Good but not great. The texture is sort of fudgey-cakey-quichelike, and I would probably add more chocolate. You can definitely taste the beans. It needs more tweaking but it has potential… this is not likely to become a family favourite but I will keep it in my back pocket for entertaining gluten-free / dairy-free friends.



1 can black beans (15 oz)
3 eggs
3 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 pinch salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 ‘glug’ maple syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup brown sugar

Rinse and drain beans.

Put all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.

Pour into greased 8×8 pan. Bake at 350F until top is dry and edges pull away from the pan, about 30 minutes.