W is for Wacky Cake.

I’m sure everyone who bakes has heard of Wacky Cake!

It’s a neat little cake that can be whipped up IN IT’S OWN PAN, using economical ingredients and it comes out fabulously rich and moist. There are no eggs, milk or butter and I know what you’re thinking “Gross. How is THAT a cake?” That’s the whole point of it! No eggs, milk or butter and its still amazing! How wacky is that?!

It was born during the Depression era out when rations for milk and eggs were scarce and the recipe and its variations have survived to this day.

I enjoyed this growing up but up until this year had never made it myself. When I finally did, I added my own touch and am pleased as punch with the results!

Cinnamon Chili Wacky Cake with Chocolate Ganache

  1. 1.5 cups flour
  2. 1 cup white sugar
  3. 4 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder
  4. 1 TSP baking soda
  5. .5 TSP salt
  6. 1 TSP -well rounded- cinnamon
  7. .5 TSP cayenne powder
  8. 1 good glug vanilla extract. It’s actually 1 tsp but ya know…
  9. 1 TBSP cider vinegar. I used good old ACV.
  10. 6 TBSP Vegetable oil. I used Olive and it was fine.
  11. 1 cup water

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C)

Sift your dry ingredients into an 8×8 inch ungreased cake pan.

Make three wells in dry ingredients and in add: oil into one, vinegar into another and vanilla into the last one.

Pour water over it all and mix it up really well with a fork. Scraping down to the bottom and sort of whisking it all together to incorporate it all together.

Bake for 30 – 40 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Cool. Frost with your favourite topping (Or not. This is good without it!)

Lazy Chocolate Ganache

Heat a few TBSP cream and a couple of handfuls of good chocolate chunks in the microwave for about a minute. Stir to melt and incorporate chocolate and cream together. Pour and spread over top of cake. Let set for a bit then eat.

YUM!

Photo by Rafel AL Saadi on Pexels.com

Makeshift Meals-Brussel Sprouts Hash & Eggs.

I had some Brussel sprouts left over from Yule (gasp!) and as I’m the only one in this house who likes the yummy little cabbage brains,I knew I could eat them however I liked!

Soooooo. I roasted them up with some wee potatoes (also left over from Yule) and seasoned them simply with salt and pepper.

Or maybe just salt…I don’t see any pepper? Do you?!

I couldn’t stop myself from picking at them just the way they were but that does not a meal make.

Channeling my inner brunch lover, I promptly fried two eggs and plopped them on top:

And enjoyed the hell out of the whole mess! It was amazingly satisfying. I will definitely be adding this one to the menu when I open my hip new diner in … never.

You should try it too!

Makeshift meal? Will you marry me? ❤

Simple Pleasure- Roast Beef Sandwich

I first came to love a simple roast beef sandwich, 26 years ago whilst standing in the kitchen with future mother in law.

I’d had them before, but usually always with deli meat, never an actual piece of roasted meat. This just screamed comfort to me. Hominess. I was a girl who craved such things even as a young 19 year old.

I can remember Mum apologizing for serving me leftovers – I think I was over for lunch that day-and I thought she was so cute. Leftovers! Like having REAL left over roast beef in sandwiches was a bad thing. I don’t think there was ever a day in my own family where we’d ever had such a thing. Her left overs were my luxury!

We ate happily together and that sandwich has stayed with me ever since. It was so simple yet so good. Quality ingredients put together well.

In the years since, I’ve fine tuned my version of the sandwiches we ate that day. My meat is barely cooked – hers was WELL, well done- I add salt and pepper and slather on way more butter than Mum ever would. Sometimes, my meat is spiced, sometimes its plain. But its always basically the same- meat, white bread, and butter. Yum!

Butter something white and yeasty
Pile on the meat!

Season with salt and pepper
Add some sides and enjoy!

What’s your favourite way to enjoy a roast beef sandwich?

Makeshift Meals- Chocolate Chili, Chocolate Banana Bread-Bananas.

What? Banana bread can be a meal.

Especially if you make it into an epic dessert like I did!

Here’s the scoop.

I was feeling dessert-y but didn’t want to make anything and didn’t really have anything laying about that was turning me on. Until I remembered the big chunk of chocolate banana bread I’d popped in the freezer and the half hand of brown bananas.

So, I microwaved the banana bread then lightly toasted it in the oven.

Then, I sliced the bananas into long chunks and pan fried them in a shit load of butter, until golden on one side. When I flipped them over to brown the other side I sprinkled over a big soup spoon of brown sugar and let the whole lot caramelize for a few mins. THEN, (this is the best part ) I poured over a good glug of chocolate, cinnamon chili Kahlua, let it all come together (without the loss of my eyebrows or home ) and poured the whole lovely mess over the warm and toasty banana bread.

It was rich as hell but really good. You should try it sometime!

Makeshift Meals-Perogies and Slaw.

With apologies to purists everywhere.

This seems weird (and it really is ) but it was good. I swear it!

I had run out of leftovers, which is what I usually have for lunch, and was (and still am ) trying to stay away from DELICIOUS, saaaaaaalty, ramen noodles.

What to eat, what to eat?

I ended up dressing some broccoli slaw with Honey Poppy Seed salad dressing and used the whole mess as a bed for some cheesy perogies. It was strangely good. Had I any sour cream I would have mixed some of that up with some Dijon and slopped it on top too.

Ta Da!

Sometimes the best meals are the makeshift ones!

What is your favourite makeshift meal?

Best of November.

Happy December!

I used to have a cat named December. We found her in December so of course that was her name.

She was a total ass. She regularly terrorized my older cat even though he was 25 lbs of  ‘Wegie and she was just this slight, skinny black and white creature.

When you looked into her eyes it was like she had no soul. Seriously. I know that’s a weird thing to say but that’s how we all felt.

I once brought a stray kitten into the house before finding its owner and this kitten read December like a book. It was fine with Corny and Spider. They even trilled at each other a few times. As soon as it saw ‘Cem, it broke out hissing and spitting, fighting in my arms to be let down and out of the house.

She was something else…she could be sweet too. To humans. She was tiny but if she lay on you, she had this way of stretching herself out so that she was this long ribbon of cat. She liked to ride on shoulders too…

She died young of kidney failure and hers was the first “pure” animal death I was a part of. There was no guilt or questions. It was all so clear. She was suffering, I couldn’t see her suffer and so she didn’t. I grieved for her but it was a sweet sadness, a balm for my soul. I knew I’d done right by her, in life, illness and death. 

Ha! So now that you’ll all been educated about my cat: Are you excited for December?! I am. This is our last month of 2018. I’m excited about the holidays -Solstice and Jolabokaflod in particular- and a fresh new year. 

Let’s say goodbye to November 🙂 

Best… Holiday Cheer! I’m not a Christmas person but I’ve read so many news articles these days about how people who decorate for the holidays early are happier than those who don’t. I’m all about being happy so:

Witchy “Wreath”

Slightly Cockeyed Ikea Vinter Lamp
Bringing the outside in … and adding some sparkle!

Best Selfie:

Miss Sassafras is very adept with technology. When we had her over for a visit the first thing she did was grab my phone and start taking photos. She insisted on this one and I don’t know whether or not to be impressed or horrified about the whole thing.

Best dinner out:

My man and I have taken to going out for appetizers every few weeks. Most places have a “Happy Hour” during the week so it can even be economical if you time it right. Our best time this month? Appy at Brown’s Social House 

We had nachos, yam fries and Korean chicken.

The nachos were fairly standard, everything was fresh. There were a ton of toppings and nothing was soggy. That’s a huge win!

The yam fries were perfectly seasoned and came with the most delicious chipotle dipping sauce that was my favourite part of the whole meal!

The chicken was mildly spicy and tasty. Hubs said it was a bit dry and my complaint was that it didn’t hold its crunch the whole way through but to be fair it was drenched in sauce so that’s probably just the way it is. We liked it, at any rate.

They even made me a unique yet recognizable Dark and Stormy even though there was some confusion as to what that was at first. Everything was hot, fresh and tasty. Service was good and I got to enjoy a weeknight out with this guy:

Best Idea I Had This Month:

I love the feel of clean sheets. Is there anyone who doesn’t? I have a friend who changes her sheets every other day and I used to think she was nuts but; the other day I climbed into bed and was so grateful for the fresh bedding that I decided then and there to change the sheets every four days instead of every seven. I feel so self satisfied like I just invented something amazing or finally gave myself permission to really live, ha ha, Its the little things in life!

All in all, November treated me most kindly. I’m still alive and kicking 🙂

How was your month? What are you looking forward to in December?

Western Family Crème Brie & Apple

Save On Foods had something that caught my eye the other week:

I like chicken. I like cheddar. I like apples. I like brie. I like cranberries…it was on sale, so I picked one up! I used to buy similar products all the time when my Hubs and I were first married. They were a good way to enjoy a “fancier” meal on a budget. That was really important to me, in my poor ass life and even now I still think its important for people to enjoy food that not only fills their bellies but their souls as well. 

Eeesh! Look at the sodium count.  

ANYway, here it is, still frozen:

And into the oven it went, only to come out like this:

Booo! I HATE it when that happens! All the stuff leaked out. I was starting to feel like this was going to suck. I understand there’s going to be a little leakage but geesh, this seems excessive. 

It looked alright otherwise. Nice colour.

The leaky stuff actually looked kinda pretty once I scraped it on top…

The inside:

Forgive me this photo.

As you can see there was very little filling on the inside but it didn’t really matter because the filling added absolutely nothing to the chicken. Instead of brie flavour there was just basic creaminess that could have come from any cheese. Don’t sell me on brie and then fail to deliver. And there was zero evidence of cheddar. I didn’t even know it was supposed to be present until I read the box whilst preparing the photos for this post!

There was a tartness but it could have been from vinegar for all I know because I got no cranberry flavour at all. Were those red bits even cranberry? Who knows! And there were these strange bits if unidentifiable gelatinous white things throughout. Onions? OH! Apples, according to the box. I couldn’t tell. Gross. I should never have to wonder what’s in my food.

Wonder I did not when it came to two things: Was salt added? and was this product frozen? , because those two elements were the only flavours that really shone through, sadly enough.

It wasn’t horrible. I ate it but I’m not sure I’d buy it again. There are better options out there. 

Have you tried such a thing? How was your experience?