Monday, 30 November 2015

Cranberry Walnut Muffins

Happy Monday! Can you believe that tomorrow is December? It's crazy how fast time is flying by! The holiday season will be here before we know it! The start of holiday parties began for me last weekend and continues on through the next few weeks. I have to pace myself to make it through! LOL

I was visiting some friends who were nice enough to have my husband and I over for dinner this past weekend and I wanted to bring them a little something as a thank you, so I decided to give these cranberry walnut muffins a try! They turned out very well and I even presented them on a cute little plate with cellophane wrap and everything, I think it turned out great!

I got the muffin recipe from

  • 1-1/4 cups Splenda No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2/3 cup chopped fresh or frozen cranberries

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray 8 cups of a 12-cup muffin pan with butter-flavored cooking spray. Set aside.

Mix Splenda Granulated Sweetener, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon together in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Set aside.

Mix buttermilk, melted butter, eggs and orange zest together in a small mixing bowl. Add to flour mixture. Mix gently to combine. Add walnuts and cranberries and stir until just blended.

Spoon batter into eight muffin cups. Bake in preheated 375 degrees F oven 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Sloppy Joe Casserole

Winnipeg finally got it's first bit of snow late last week! It was brought on feeling of disappointment that it's here again but at the same time we had such a nice fall and went well into November without that I was glad to see it! The temperature have been pretty mild since and some of it has melted but we are getting a few days with cooler temps so it won't all go away.

So to tie this all in, along with colder temps comes good hearty food! I love good hearty food and this weather is perfect for making it. This past Sunday I made a sloppy joe casserole and it was delicious! I have a recipe on my blog for plain old sloppy joes but this casserole just takes it up a notch! You start but making the same delicious beef filling but instead of eating it on buns you make a bread dough that you spread on top of the meat mixture and when you bake it you get the delicious meat mixture on the bottom and the super good bread as a topping!

I highly recommend this to anyone looking for a quick, easy to put together and super delicious meal!

I got my recipe from


1 lb of lean ground beef
one white onion diced
one green pepper diced
two teaspoons of garlic powder
two teaspoons of brown sugar
one tablespoon of Worcestershire
one can (15 oz) of tomato sauce
3/4 cup ketchup
1 1/2 cups flour
3 teaspoons of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter melted
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1 cup shredded cheese


Brown your beef and drain most of the fat.
Add the diced onions and pepper and sautée for a few minutes.
Add the spices and mix well.
Mix the tomato sauce and ketchup together and then add to the beef mixture and mix well.

Turn the mixture down and let it simmer on the stove while you prepare the topping.
Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together. Add the egg, melted butter and milk and mix until just combined, Do not over mix.

Stir in the cheese.
Pour the meat mixture into a 9 by 13 casserole dish.

Spread the bread mixture overtop, making it an even as possible.

Bake at 400 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before cutting and serving.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Mocha Truffle Brownies

I think we have finally hit the point where the nice warmer weather stops and we are officially starting to get more into winter. Winnipeg still does not have snow on the ground and that is amazing, not to mention the weather these last few weekends has been nothing short of amazing! But I think the tide is turning and it's only a matter of time. Once you start getting highs in the minus temps you know it's getting cold and going to remain cold.

Last Friday my husband and I were invited to my brother and his wife's place for dinner. I asked what I could contribute and dessert was the request so I went on my Pinterest account and went through all my old dessert pins looking for something amazing! I found this recipe for Mocha Truffle Brownies and knew it was the one as my brother loves brownies and his wife and I both love chocolate, it was a good fit for all!

My only real complaint with this recipe is that the coffee flavour didn't come through really strongly and that was a little disappointing, but the truffle and chocolate parts were amazing. This is a very rich dessert and brownie but everyone that tried it loved it.

I got my recipe from

  • 6 oz dark chocolate chips
  • 3 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 11 Tbls (2/3 cup) butter
  • 1 tsp instant coffee
  • ⅓ cup boiling water
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1-2 Tbls cocoa powder to "flour" baking pan
Ganache Frosting
  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ⅔ cup heavy whipping cream
Melt chocolate chips and butter together in a microwave safe container on medium heat, 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until chocolate has fully melted.
Combine boiling water and instant coffee, stirring to dissolve coffee granules. Pour ⅓ cup coffee into melted chocolate and stir until fully combined.
Let cool to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 325F.
Grease and flour 9x13 baking pan with cocoa powder making sure to tap out all excess powder.
Beat 3 eggs in a mixing bowl until light and frothy.
Beat in sugar for two minutes on medium speed.
Reduce speed to low and beat in room temperature chocolate-coffee mixture.
Stir in flour just until combined.
Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 40 minutes or until brownies are set. Let brownies cool completely.
Ganache Frosting
Combine chocolate chips and whipping cream in small saucepan. Stir over low heat until chocolate has melted and cream is completely combined.
Pour over cooled brownies. Refrigerate until frosting has set up completely. Cut into bars and store in an airtight container.

Friday, 13 November 2015

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bars

This has felt like a weird week with a random Wednesday off due to Remembrance Day but it's Friday today and that is all that matters!

I made these delicious Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bars on the weekend and they turned out really good, so I wanted to share the recipe. I ended up using whole wheat flour because I had run out of regular and I also used Truvia Brown Sugar instead of regular because again I had it in my pantry. Even with those two changes I still thought these bars turned out really good and moist!

I got my recipe idea from


1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/3 heaping cup peanut butter

1 large egg
1 cup light brown sugar, packed (I used Truvia)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour (I used whole wheat)
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips + 2 tablespoons, for sprinkling


Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
In a large, microwave-safe bowl melt the butter, about 1 minute on high power.
Wait momentarily before adding the egg so you don't scramble it. Add the peanut butter, egg, brown sugar, vanilla, and whisk until smooth.
Add the flour and stir until just combined, don't over mix.
Stir in 1 cup chocolate chips.
Turn batter out into prepared pan, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula.
Sprinkle evenly with 2 tablespoons chocolate chips, smoothly the top lightly with a spatula.
Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until done. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. Allow bars to cool in pan for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving.

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Mexi Fries

It;s almost mind November and Winnipeg doesn't have any snow on the ground! Not only do we not have any snow but the temperatures have been pretty nice out, indicating it might be at least a few more weeks before we have snow that stays!

I must admit I am a bit of a snow fan but our winters are definitely too long and too cold so while I am always excited for the first snow fall I am definitely tired of it by March!

To combat the cooler fall weather the Caruk household decided to have a Mexican dinner night on Sunday. My husband and his brother spend a good portion of the day watching football and I watch some with them so we decided to use up a taco kit we had bought and my husband asked me if I could make some mexi fries to go with them. I thought whynot this will; be something new to put on my blog and who doesn't love tater tots smothered in beef, cheese, salsa, green onions and whatever else you want!

I searched for a few recipes online to get a basic idea of what I wanted to do and then I made this masterpiece.
This was super easy to make and super delicious! I bought a bag of tater tots and I tossed them with some olive oil and salt and pepper and baked them until they crisped up a bit. I also put them under the broiler for a few minutes to help crisp them up.

I was making taco beef already for the tacos, so I just made extra beef and topped the tater tots with beef, cheese, green onions and salsa. I would also suggest sour cream but we omitted the sour cream ourselves. I popped it back in the oven to heat up again and melt the cheese and voila, delicious mexi fries.

We had these with soft and hard tacos and it was a delicious feast! I definitely recommend giving mexi fries a try for something new to spice things up! You can change your toppings, use chicken instead of beef, add some different cheeses or really whatever you feel like. That's the best part about these.


One bag of frozen tater tots
olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
ground beef
taco spice
green onions


First place the tater tots in a boil and toss with olive oil and salt and pepper. Then lay them in one layer on a baking sheet and bake until browned and crisped up.

Transfer to a serving dish and top with the browned up ground beef that you have previously mixed with the taco spice.

Ass chopped green onions, shredded cheese and salsa.

Pop back in the oven for about 5 minutes to melt the cheese and re-heat the dish and serve immediately.

Friday, 6 November 2015

Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken and Veggies

TGIF everyone! Wow did this week fly by! I meant to post this recipe I made last weekend a few days ago but time got away from me, so you are getting it today. It's a super delicious and easy meal to make that I got rave reviews from my husband and his brother!

I bought a couple of chicken breasts and chopped them up and I added carrots and potatoes. I whisked up the sauce added it to the slow cooker and let it cook from about 10am until we ate about 5:30. It was so easy to put together and it turned out so good. The sauce was really delicious.

I definitely recommend you giving this a try for a quick and easy delicious hearty meal!

I got this recipe from

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 16 ounces baby red potatoes, halved
  • 16 ounces baby carrots
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
    For the sauce
  • 1/2 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • In a large bowl, combine soy sauce, honey, ketchup, garlic, basil, oregano, red pepper flakes and pepper.
  • Place chicken breasts, potatoes, carrots and soy sauce mixture into a 6-qt slow cooker. Cover and cook on low heat for 7-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours, basting every hour. Add green beans during the last 30 minutes of cooking time.

Monday, 2 November 2015

Halloween 2015

I hope everyone had a fantastic Halloween! It was a pretty nice night in Winnipeg except for some pesky rain but we saw lots of kids out this year! I think our count was up 25% from last year! We had 95 kids in total and it was great to see everyone out and some great costumes!

We saw a few football players, two rubiks cubes, some back to the future characters, a whole bunch of super heroes, a very cute Skelton, and some scary masks!

Check out the Halloween display my husband put out. Every year we add a bit more to our collection and eventually he wants to put a haunted house in the garage! LOL

I was going to make some eyeball cookies but ended up running out of time the few days before, so maybe next year I will get some Halloween treats made up!

Enjoy our Halloween display!