Friday, November 13, 2015

Salmon Quinoa Spinach Burgers

Clean eating. Amid the baking, one has to embrace a bit of wholesomeness; and in the coming weeks -Hanukkah aside of course- I plan on exploring delicious clean meal ideas starting with Quinoa, my favourite superfood. 

I found this recipe online and adapted it by using Spinach. What I love about these Salmon Quinoa Spinach Burgers is that they consist of protein and lots of GREENS. Not to mention they are super filling and easy to pop together. They are so easy to make, the kids can make them and even the dads!  Hope you like them!


Makes 5 patties approximately (190 calories each) 
  • 15 oz skinless salmon fillet
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/3 cup diced shallots
  • 1-2 cups chopped spinach
  • 3/4 cup cooked quinoa
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp Old Bay ( I bought mine at At Water Market's Les Douceurs du Marché)
  • 1 large beaten egg
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  1. In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil,  shallots, dijon, salt and pepper.
  2. Cut about a 5 oz piece off or the salmon and place in a food processor or chopper to finely chop (as a means to hold the burgers together).  
  3. Chop the remaining salmon, transfer to a large work bowl.
  4. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, saute spinach and add shallots. Season with salt and pepper and cook over medium heat until tender, about 5 minutes.
  5. Transfer to the bowl with salmon along with quinoa, Dijon, Old Bay and egg. Mix to combine, then form into 5 patties, about 1/2 cup each.
  6. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat, spray with oil and add the salmon patties. Cook them for 5 minutes, then gently turn and cook an additional 5 minutes, until cooked through.
Voila! Enjoy this meal of wholesomeness!  

 Adapted from

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Best Apple Crumble

It's official, I baked or cooked with close to 100 apples this fall and guess what? I
'm still not appled-out yet. My passion for apples definetely doesn't come from my Moroccan heritage. In fact, if it was up to my North African genes, I'd be chowing-down on dry sesame Moroccan galettes, the ones my mom or dad eat on a typical Saturday afternoon while sipping mint Moroccan tea and debating on La Presse headlines. As tangent-y as this is going, I cherish those sesame galette moments.

Now, back to apples... Nothing like an apple crumble to remind me of how delicious fall food comfort can actually be. Gosh I'm feeling metaphoric tonight. Enjoy this sweet crumble!

  • 4-6 Cortland apples depending on size
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup of diced unsalted butter
For the topping:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup old-fashioned quick oats
1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, diced


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Peel, core, and cut the apples into bite-size chunks. Place the fruit in a large bowl and add the zest, lemon juice, sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  3. Pour into a 8 by 10 rectangular or oval baking dish.
  4. Toss in a few cubes of butter inside.

For the topping:

  1. Combine the flour, sugars, salt, oats, and butter in the bowl with a wooden spoon mix for about 1 minute, until the mixture is in large crumbles. 
  2. Sprinkle evenly over the fruit, covering the fruit completely. 
  3. Place the baking dish on a sheet pan and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until the top is brown and the fruit is bubbly. Serve warm. 
  4. It's even more delicious topped with vanilla ice cream. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

I usually don't bake the same desserts twice... unless they are these cookies. This is one of my favorite chewy chocolate chip cookie recipes. I've been turning to this recipe time and time again for the past 10 years. Enjoy!

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter (for dairy free substitute with Earth Balance)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (about 9 ounces) semisweet or white chocolate chips
  • Baking sheet
  • Parchment paper
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and baking soda; set aside. 
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter with both sugars; beat on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low; add the vanilla, and eggs. Beat until well mixed. Add the flour mixture; mix until just combined. 
  3. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  4. Drop overflowing tablespoon-size balls of dough about 2 inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
  5. Bake until cookies are golden around the edges, but still soft in the center, 10 to 12 minutes. If you make your cookies smaller bake them for 8 minutes. Remove from oven, and let cool on baking sheet 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack, and let cool completely. 

Ricotta Spinach Lasagna

As a foodie mama, I have this love hate relationship with ketchup. I think many moms feel me on this one. On one hand I'm grateful for ketchup because hey, it gets kids eating. On the other hand.... we shvitz and toil in the kitch, cook-up all kinds of creative meals to feed our kids, and when we get all excited about introducing a new delicious meal or veggies.... they stare back at us with those cute little eyes asking for ketchup  (sigh).

Luckily, I broke ground with my little one who now loooooves this classic ricotta spinach lasagna. Fall is the time of year to feast on one-dish dinners where you can pile up veggies, protein and carbs in one (minus the ketchup). So until I figure out how to terminate my older daughter's ketchup obsession, this is one meal I'm making.

  • 1 bag of spinach - 3 cups ( you can use more, it makes it healthier)
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 300 g of ricotta cheese - 1 container
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 bag of grated or fresh mozzarella
  •  Marinara sauce of choice or plain tomato sauce if you do not have marinara
  • Store-bought dried noodles, cooked
  • Salt to taste ( I use Kosher salt- it is coarser than table salt)
  • optional - basil leaves in the sauce
  • optional - grated Parmesan cheese, (about 1/2 cups)
  • 9-by-13 inch baking dish


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and ensure rack in the middle is in place.
  2. Set a large stockpot of boiling salted water and cook the lasagna sheets.
  3. Combine ricotta, egg, nutmeg, ground pepper and salt in a medium bowl. Season with pepper. Coarsely grate 1/2 of the mozzarella, and stir into ricotta mixture. Using your fingers, shred remaining mozzarella into 2-inch strips, and reserve.
  4. For the Spinach: Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. When oil shimmers, add onions and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 3 minutes. Add spinach, a few handfuls at a time, and cook, stirring frequently, until all spinach is wilted, 3-5 minutes. Transfer to a strainer and press against spinach to remove as much liquid.
  5. Combine the Spinach into the ricotta mixture.
  6. Heat your marinara sauce, you can add some basil leaves at this point and a bit of olive oil. No need to cook the sauce, simply warm it up.
  7. For assembly: Spread 1/2 cup sauce in a 9-by-13 inch baking dish. Place a layer of noodles over marinara. Spread 1/3 of the ricotta spinach mixture over noodles. Place a layer of noodles over the cheese layer. Spread 1 cup sauce over noodles. Repeat layering (noodles, marinara, noodles, ricotta mixture). Spread remaining marinara over cheese layer, then sprinkle with shredded mozzarella and Parmesan.
  8. Place baking dish on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until cheese is golden brown and sauce is bubbling, 45 to 50 minutes. I usually know its ready when it smells delicious in the kitchen. 
  9. Let it stand for 15 minutes before slicing and serving.