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Author: Redawna

Gingerbread Whoopie Pies

Gingerbread Whoopie Pies

Gingerbread, a flavour close to my heart. If you look up at the top of the page you will see a section titled Gingerbread Houses, after you’re done here jump over and take a look! There you will find the collection of my gingerbread builds that have raised $1000’s of dollars for charity. Thanks for checking them out, I cherish the fact that with sugar and flour I can make such substantial donations during the Christmas season.

Gingerbread Whoopie Pie From Nutmeg Disrupted

Now about these Gingerbread Whoopie Pies. They looks amazing yes?! I thought so too. I was inspired from all the Whoopie Pies showing up in my Instagram stream a couple of weeks ago from some of the amazing Canadian food bloggers I follow. They were served during a coffee break on the final day of #FBC2016 in Toronto. Due to business obligations I could not attend the conference this year but eagerly watched my social media feeds to capture as much of the action as I could. For days after the conference I was distracted by thoughts of those whoopee pies and knew I had to recreate them at home.

They turned out amazing! Soft and tender, full of traditional gingerbread flavour and a creamy buttery filling, perfection really!

I invite you to give them a try and let me know what you think! Perfect for holiday cookie trays, the quintessential side to a steamy hot cup of coffee or a mug tea, definitely a must try!

As always, thanks for stopping by. Have a fantastic rest of your day!

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
Gingerbread Whoopie Pies
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: baked
Serves: 14
Ingredients
  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons of ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup butter, softened
  • ¾ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • ½ cup Crosby molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ¼ cup granulated
  • Buttercream Icing
  • 4 cups of confectioners/icing sugar
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons of milk
  • pinch of cup of butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Mix all the dry ingredients except the ¼ cup of granulated sugar together in a bowl.
  2. Beat butter and brown sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add molasses, egg and vanilla; beat well.
  3. Gradually beat in flour mixture on low speed until well mixed.
  4. Roll into 1 inch balls and place on a plate.
  5. Refrigerate for 2 hours.
  6. Roll the cookie balls in the granulated sugar and place on a silpat or parchment lined cookie sheet.
  7. Bake 8 - 10 minutes.
  8. Let cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes.
  9. Remove to a cooling rack.
  10. While they are cooling make the buttercream icing.
  11. Cream the butter in the bowl of a mixer.
  12. Add half the confectioners sugar, 1 tablespoon of milk and the salt.
  13. Beat well to combine.
  14. Add the remaining confectioners sugar, milk and vanilla.
  15. Beat well until fluffy.
  16. If the icing appears dry add an additional table spoon of milk.
  17. Spread a generous amount of icing on one cookie and top it with a second creating a sandwich.

 

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What’s new at McDonald’s & A Giveaway.

What’s new at McDonald’s & A Giveaway.

Have you stopped by McDonald’s lately? You should.

There are a lot of new things happening with McDonald’s. From the cool new additions on the My McD’s McDonald’s app to the fantastic Create Your Taste table service burger experience. It is definitely worth a trip. If you have a smart phone take a few minutes to download the new McDonald’s app before you do. To download the app search My McD’s or McDonald’s Canada in the Apple and Android App Stores.

The app has a plethora of information and setting up an account is super easy. Once your account is all set up you can explore all the app has to offer.  It has the nutritional information for all the menu items to help you make more informed decisions. It will show you where the closet McDonald’s locations are. And best of all, there are Mobile Offers to help you save money when you are eating on the go! You can redeem the mobile offers at the drive thru, the front counter and at the kiosk.

There is also something new happening at McDonald’s you MUST check out. You have probably seen the commercials for the new table service burger experience called Create Your Taste. Using the kiosk you build your burger from scratch starting with the bun or lettuce wrap, through the amazing list of condiments to the fantastic toppings, like caramelized onions or crispy fried onions to sauted mushrooms, guacamole or the spectacular sundried tomato pesto (seriously try the pesto, they should sell it by the jar!) You can add additional paddies, each one a 1/3 pound of Angus Alberta beef and bacon to finish it off. The kiosk makes it vey easy to create your burger and you have options for sides like poutine, regular McDonald’s fries or salad.

Once your order is placed and paid for you take a tracker and head to your table.

Create Your Taste table service burger experience at McDonlds from Nutmeg Disrupted

Your order is now being prepared in a special Create Your Taste section of the kitchen and will be brought to your table along with your drinks.

Create Your Taste build a burger table service experience at McDonalds from Nutmeg Disrupted

I have to say the burgers are fantastic! You really have to try it. These are not the McDonald’s burgers you have had in the past. I have had to opportunity to try the Create Your Taste experience twice now, once at a Gastropost Outpost event when they rolled out the program and once last week. The new Create Your Taste burger is comparable to the big box sit down restaurant burgers……only better. Seriously, I can’t say enough about it, tasting is believing.

If you are on Instagram do a quick search of the #createyourtasteCA hashtag to see how creative people are getting with their burgers.

We would loved you try the My McD’s App and the Create Your Taste table service burger experience. We have one $25 gift card, supplied  by McDonald’s to giveaway so your next visit will be on them! All you need to do is be a Twitter follower and share this post on Twitter! The winner will be announced on the 21st of September.

disclosure: The opinions in this post are my own. I was given a gift card to try out the My McD’s app. McDonald’s is supplying the gift card for this giveaway. This contest is only open to my Canadian readers.

 

 

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Char-Broil Gratitude Post & the birth of a smoker.

Char-Broil Gratitude Post & the birth of a smoker.

I have been wondering how to start this post for a while now. It came to me quite clearly  a few days ago to just simply share the story I have been telling so many in the journey to build this smoker. Because how else do you let the world know of a company with customer service so outstanding that you want everyone to own their products? Of a company that stepped up way way above and beyond. A company I had the pleasure of working with last spring when they rolled out their Life Is Better Bbqed campaign.

Of course I am talking about Char-Broil.

My replacement Char-Broil BBQ on Nutmeg Disrupted

In the spring of 2015 I did a 3 post project for Char-Broil. They had a Spring campaign going on with Lowes and I was honored to be a part of it. As you know we love BBQ on Nutmeg Disrupted and to work with such an amazing team was a dream come true. I received a gorgeous Char-Broil BBQ from Lowes to review and grill with for the campaign. The BBQ was mine to keep.

Flash forward a few weeks after the campaign wrapped up standing in line at Starbucks…

My phone buzzed, it was a text from my son. A huge storm was rolling into town and a tree was down in the backyard. As I was standing there I was struck with a bit of panic. Tree down. Which tree. No way it could be the 1000+ pound tree beside the deck. Then he sent a photo from the inside of the house through the patio door. All you could see was leaves.

Indeed it was said tree.

I paid for my coffee then quickly made the 70 minute trip home.

A huge maple tree down from a summer storm.

Massive tree down during a summer storm on Nutmeg Disrupted

A bbq crushed by a massive tree on Nutmeg Disrupted

That was what I found when I arrived home.

I was devastated. Yes that is a bold statement to make about a BBQ, but in that moment I was completely devastated. It took a couple of days to get the tree bucked up and retrieve the crushed grill. Almost every inch of it was damaged.

The evening the tree fell I had Tweeted about the storm and the sad fate of my BBQ. I was thankful no one was hurt, had anyone been grilling out back I can’t even imagine how that would have ended. The smoker that was on the deck took a hit and was damaged but the full weight of the tree was on the BBQ.

What happened next was something so unexpected and wonderful.

Within 24 hours of my BBQ misfortune I had been contacted by the marketing company that represented Char-Broil during the Lowes campaign.

Char-Broil had heard about what happened and they wanted to make it right and send me a new BBQ to replace the one that was crushed. Talk about a company standing behind their product! Because I had done some work for them they were willing to replace their product, not because they had to, simply because they wanted to. Now that is a brand I want to stand behind and do business with.

I may have cried a little when I received that news. BBQ is a passion and to have not only my smoker but my BBQ also taken out in a brief moment was a huge loss.

Char-Broil customer service on Nutmeg Disrupted

After the tree was cleared away we took apart the BBQ to salvage any of the good parts. It felt like a such a waste tossing out such a new piece of equipment and the goal now was to repurpose what we could. Immediately it was decided that we would build a smoker. The only pieces not damaged were the handles off the doors, the temperature gage, the logo and the heating element area of the grill, though bent it was still functioning. With the salvaged bits stored away we set off with a plan of building a smoker. We had an idea of what we wanted for the body of the smoker and scoured the ads for upcoming auction sales. Everything we looked at was just not quite what we had envisioned until one day while in Canadian Tire after a year long search we found the perfect body for our new smoker.

Shopping for a new smoker body on Nutmeg Disrupted

The vision has always been to build a large smoker. Something substantial so that we had the area to do a large cook. Having catered weddings and hosted pig roasts we have had the opportunity to use some very large BBQs and we wanted our smoker to not only be impressive but have the power to do the job.

Adding the Char-Broil details to the new smoker on Nutmeg Disrupted

From there everything started to fall into place. In conversation with Brian our butcher we mentioned that we were building a smoker and he gave us a great idea as to what we could use for the racking inside the unit. The heating element was a close fit and with a bit of work the smoker started to coming together.

Fitting the heating element into the new smoker on Nutmeg Disrupted

We did a few small trial runs to work out the kinks and cooked for an event mid summer.

The first offical cook with the new smoker on Nutmeg Disrupted

The smoker has been getting a lot of attention, it is a gorgeous piece of equipment and with every inquiry I share my Char-Broil story.

In closing I want to say a heartfelt thank you to Char-Broil. Not only have you made this girls BBQ dreams continue, you make a product that I love and your customer service is unmatched. Thank you!

 

 

 

 

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Sun Gold Kiwi Jam

Sun Gold Kiwi Jam

My favourite fruit is anything tropical. There is something to be said about the rich sweetness that you find in a kiwi, mango,  pineapple or passion fruit.

I was very excited to create something spectacular when a call out from the team over at Zespri Kiwifruit asked bloggers from across Canada to create new recipes using Sun Gold Kiwifruit. Head down to your nearest produce section and check out the kiwifruit in store. Sun Gold kiwifruit looks like green kiwifruit from a distance but they are different. Sun Gold kiwifruit is sweeter then green kiwifruit. It has a beautiful yellow flesh colour and it tastes like a cross between a mango and strawberry. But its most obvious difference is the Sun Gold kiwifruit has a somewhat smooth hairless skin. Sun Gold Kiwifruit contains Vitamin C (more then 3 times the amount found in oranges), Vitamin E, potassium (as much as a medium banana), fibre and folic acid and is available from May thru to October.

Sun Gold Kiwifruit on Nutmeg Disrupted

Much of the produce available right now is at the height of freshness, not only to enjoy today but to can and preserve to enjoy months down the road. If you have never canned before I suggest starting with jam. The batches are small, the prep is quick and easy and it is a fantastic way to get your feet wet. Because what could be better then enjoying some luscious tropical kiwi jam in the middle of a January deep freeze.

It is important to use sterilized, hot  jars and lids. Everything you need comes in a case of canning jars.  The lids and screw bands go into a small pot of water which you bring to a simmer to keep warm. Wash and dry your jars and place on a large baking rack and set in the oven at 225 degrees F for 10 minutes. Keep them warm until ready to fill. Or you can fill a canner with water and place your jars in the water and heat to 180 degrees F. A metal canning rack makes easy work of adding all the jars at once.

I add a 1/2 teaspoon of butter to all my jams and jellies to prevent bubbly scum from forming from the boiling process. I rarely have to skim my jellies any more. I add this after the first boil. You will need to process the full jars of jelly in the water bath canner. Have it filled with 3-4 inches of warm water and place it on a burner to heat while you are making the jam.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Sun Gold Kiwi Jam
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: preserving
Cuisine: condiment
Serves: 5pints
Ingredients
  • 7-8 medium SunGold kiwifruit
  • ⅔ cups of unsweetened pineapple juice
  • ⅓ cup of lime juice
  • 1 package of certo pectin
  • 3 cups of sugar
  • ½ cup of flaked coconut
  • ¼ cup of Apricot Brandy
  • ½ teaspoon of butter
  • a few drops of yellow food colouring (optional)
  • 5 half pint jars
Instructions
  1. Cut and scoop the kiwi out of their skins.
  2. It is so much easier then peeling and is the way we eat it fresh, right out if the skins.
  3. Place the fruit in a medium sized bowl and mash.
  4. Measure out 2 cups of fruit.
  5. Combine the kiwifruit, pineapple juice and lime juice in a large deep saucepan.
  6. Add the fruit pectin, stirring until dissolved. Bring the mixture to a full boil, stirring constantly.
  7. Add the sugar, flaked coconut and butter, return to a full rolling boil.
  8. Boil hard for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
  9. Remove from heat and skim any foam that is on the surface using a metal spoon.
  10. Stir in the brandy.
  11. Stir in the food colouring.
  12. Ladle jam into sterilized jars leaving a quarter inch of headspace.
  13. Apply lids and screw bands, just until finger tight.
  14. Place into the canner and process for 10 minutes.

This jam turned out fabulously! It has an amazing flavour that is kicked up a notch from the touch of lime. Not only does it add a bit of zing it also brings out the flavour of the pineapple. I left the kiwifruit a bit chunky when I mashed it which along with the coconut gives the jam a great texture.  And the colour, spectacular!

Of course it is fantastic slathered on hot buttered toast or bagels it would be wonderful cooked down a bit and used to baste pork or even better, as a glaze on crisp salty chicken wings!

Head down to your local grocer and grab some Sun Gold Kiwifruit then head over to Twitter and Instagram and look up #Zespri4life to see what other amazing dishes you can create with these sweet golden gems!

Sun Gold Zespri Kiwifruit on Nutmeg Disrupted

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Zespri Kiwifruit. I was compensated for my time and was supplied with some fantastic Sun Gold Kiwifruit.

Sun Gold Kiwi Jam on Nutmeg Disrupted

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Grilled Caesar Salad

Grilled Caesar Salad

Grilled Caesar Salad

It all started when I spotted a photo of a Grilled Caesar salad on Instagram from the Canola Eat Well team. I had heard of grilling romaine before but had never tried it. I love Caesar salad and I BBQ as often as I use the stove so it was high time I grilled some lettuce.

Grilling the romaine makes it very tender and gives the salad an amazing texture. The dressing is so fresh with the perfect hit of garlic and fantastic tanginess from the balsamic vinegar and grainy mustard. The buttery fruitiness of the reggiano is the perfect finish to compliment the dressing.

The recipe looks long with a lot of ingredients but it is actually quick and easy once the mise en place is done. Arranging the ingredients takes more time then preparing the actual salad. You will find that after you make the salad once you will be able to get it together and plated within 15 minutes.

A quick note: make extra croutons. They are so good you may find yourself and anyone else hanging around the kitchen snacking on them while dinner is getting prepped!

Grilled Caesar Salad

Romaine Hearts

2 lemons – zested

2 tablespoons of canola oil

croutons:

cheese bread sticks – cubed

2 tablespoon of canola oil

1 teaspoon of lemon zest

1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder

pinch of dried parsley

pinch of dried basil

salt and pepper

dressing:

2 cloves of garlic – grated

1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon of grainy mustard

2 tablespoons of grated parmigiana reggiano

1 teaspoon of Worcestershire

1 teaspoon of lemon zest

1/4 cup of canola oil

 

For the croutons: Heat 2 tablespoons of canola oil in a pan over medium. Add the cubed bread sticks, tossing to coat. Cook until nice and toasty, 5 – 6 minutes. Add the garlic powder, a pinch of salt and pepper, 2 tablespoons of grated parmigiana reggiano and 1 teaspoon of lemon zest and the dried herbs,  stirring well.  Pour into a large bowl and let cool.

making croutons for grilled caesar salad on Nutmeg Disrupted

For the dressing: In a small bowl combine the grated garlic, balsamic vinegar, grainy mustard, 2 tablespoons of grated reggiano, Worcestershire  and 1 teaspoon of lemon zest. Whisk in 1/4 cup of canola oil. Set aside.

Drizzle the romaine hearts and halved lemons with 2 tablespoons of canola oil.

Grill the romaine hearts and lemons over medium high heat flipping as needed. The romaine is done when it has a nice char on the edges.

grilling romaine hears for grilled caesar salad on Nutmeg Disrupted

To serve place a romaine heart on a plate, slice in half length wise. Top with croutons, dressing, freshly grated parmigiana reggina and finish with squeezing the juice of half a grilled lemon over everything.

grilled caesar salad from Nutmeg Disrupted

 

 

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