Sweet Potato Chronicles - THE NEVER ENDING STORY OF THE WELL-FED FAMILY… - page 2

Netflix & SPC: Easy Character Masks

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One of the first crafts I made with a teeny 18-month old Scar­lett was a mask of a cat. I could sit here and pre­tend that I don’t know what hap­pened to it, but being an overly sen­ti­men­tal per­son, I can admit that I have it lov­ingly pressed into an art port­fo­lio that houses many of Scarlett’s first crafts and art­work. I cre­ated it one after­noon, post nap, when I had that hour before din­ner to kill–you know the one, the one that actu­ally feels like two weeks. I made a cat because other than absolutely noth­ing else, a cat is the only thing I can draw well. How­ever, Scar­lett thought it per­fectly resem­bled our fam­ily pet, Abbie. Read more

Sponsored Post: Avocado Hummus and How to Keep it Fresh with Glad!

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We used to have a joke at my house. Every Sat­ur­day before we headed out for the gro­cery store, Ben would open the fridge and say, "Time to throw out the gro­ceries!" Sadly, it was true. We'd have to pitch out the decay­ing bit of fruits and veg­eta­bles that hadn't been con­sumed in time in order to make room for the new batch of fruits and veg­eta­bles. That wouldn't get eaten. And then thrown away. Really not so funny. With the cost of gro­ceries being what they are, we had to do some­thing. And so do you! Accord­ing to StatsCan, the aver­age Cana­dian house­hold wastes 13% of all food pur­chased. It's a lot of money.

These days I go out of my way to waste as lit­tle food as pos­si­ble and there a few easy ways to do it.

First of all I meal plan. When you know what you'll be cook­ing and eat­ing all week, you make bet­ter, less waste­ful choices at the gro­cery store. I don't plan every sin­gle thing we con­sume but I know most din­ners and I know what I need for school lunches. I make sure that we eat produce-heavy meals at the begin­ning of the week and lean on my pantry by the end. And I batch cook on the week­ends so that I'm using lots of food almost as soon as it gets home. Read more

Pumpkin Week: Pumpkin in Every Meal

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We heard from a reader today who said they can't wait to make pump­kin frit­ters this week­end. Thanks so much for writ­ing in response to our corn­bread post. It's funny. When I was at FASHION mag­a­zine as the beauty direc­tor, I always won­dered if any one read our pages. In fact, I used to ran­domly stand up, pop my head out of my cubi­cle and, with a laugh, yell to my co-workers, "Does any one read this stuff?!" Obvi­ously, as the most read fash­ion mag­a­zine in Canada, lots of peo­ple read our pages. How­ever, when it's your fifth late night at the office and the 600 word story for a new mas­cara that you wrote, re-wrote, edited, cut and then cut two more times for space has bro­ken your spirit down to a nub you can't help but won­der if any one actu­ally stops to read a story. Your mind plays tricks on you. You won­der crazy things like, "Is all this labo­ri­ous activ­ity just for one bored soul in a doctor's office who actu­ally hates mas­cara? Or will peo­ple love the fact we've bro­ken down the tech­nol­ogy behind this prod­uct to give them a snap­shot of all the sci­ence that goes into the sim­ple tool."

I some­times have sim­i­lar moments with the blog. You write a post, pub­lish it and then pray it will help make a dif­fer­ence to someone's meal-time dilem­mas. What we learned at the mag­a­zine is most only bother to write when they're either really mad or really happy. Oth­er­wise, who has the time to say, "Hey, fyi, I'm going to do that!" As for­mer mag­a­zine edi­tors, Ceri and I com­pletely under­stand it's usu­ally an extreme emo­tion that moti­vates a response and, because we're busy par­ents, we do the same. I can't remem­ber the last time I wrote a com­ment just for the heck of it. So, to any one who is moved to write us, thank you so very much. We'll take the good and the bad because we know it mat­ters to you. And to the lovely reader who is mak­ing pump­ing frit­ters, I've been think­ing a lot about cre­at­ing a pump­kin frit­ter recipe so let me know how it goes with the one you're using.

Since we're guess­ing you all have a deficit of time but are lov­ing pump­kin right now, here are some more recipes from our archives. How­ever, don't let this list fool you, we've got way more. Just search pump­kin. In the mean­time, I highly rec­om­mend the pan­cakes. And please don't bother writ­ing to tell me you liked them too. You've got bet­ter things to do and I get that. Read more

Pumpkin Week: Spiced Pumpkin Skillet Cornbread

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You can't ignore the health ben­e­fits of pump­kin. It's why you may not want to just leave this fruit on your doorstep. Aside from the fact the vibrant orange orb is packed with beta carotene which is con­verted to vit­a­min A in your body and is respon­si­ble for boost­ing immu­nity and sup­port­ing eye health, your friendly neigh­bour­hood pump­kin also has a super­sonic dose of vit­a­min C. It is also stocked with fiber. If you want to hear more about its weight loss ben­e­fits and how it may help lower your risk of cer­tain can­cers you can check out this CNN article.

I have to admit that I'd rather visit the den­tist (um, sorry, to my beau­ti­ful den­tist, Nisha) then carve one of those sugar pump­kins. They're always so hard to cut and get­ting the guts out makes such a mess. I don't even like to do it on Hal­loween. Although, when it comes to soup and pasta dishes, you kind of can't repli­cate the flavour that comes from roast­ing. When I'm short on time (which is always) I use canned puree. Like here, for this recipe (and most of my bak­ing), I like to use canned but if you have some time and a sharp knife, carve a pump­kin and roast it with some olive oil then puree it in a food proces­sor. You won't be disappointed.

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Lunch Week: Broccoli Cheese Patties

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Laura and I have been think­ing a lot lately about the school year and the par­tic­u­lar chal­lenges it presents to par­ents. Because, let's be hon­est, it's not just our kids who have to tackle school, it's the whole fam­ily. There are so many mov­ing parts: the school run, or in our case, the school bus, get­ting kids, lunches, home­work, gym shoes and that freak­ing sci­ence project, all to school along with the child, the after school period of classes, team prac­tices, home work super­vi­sion and, yep, din­ner and lunch mak­ing so you can do it all again tomor­row. Frankly, it's bonkers. And even though we all signed up for bonkers we can still use some help, right?

This recipe is some help. I think this may be my new quiche. Long time read­ers of SPC know that I had a good, long run with mak­ing quiche for my kids' lunches but their affec­tions are wan­ing. Never mind, now we've got broc­coli cheese pat­ties to take their place. These are a great vit­a­min, carb, pro­tein combo that you make ahead, freeze and pull out as you need them. One or two pat­ties, along with some fruits and veg­gies and you've got a really great school lunch.

Oh, and here's that video we made about lunches again! More com­ing soon, I promise.

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