Thursday, 27 October 2016

Grandma's Crunchie Bars


Grandmas, Nonnas or Omas have always been important figures to families. They’re the ones who bring the family together. They are the peacemakers, the matriarchs, the storytellers and of course the amazing cooks! My grandma could cook almost anything from scratch and it was always delicious!

 Every time we went to visit my grandma in Québec City, I was so excited. I couldn’t wait to see her beautiful, warm smile and jump into her arms. To me, she was “home”, a place where I felt safe and loved.


Of course it was a matter of minutes before she was carrying me to the kitchen and asking me if I was hungry or wanted a treat. It didn’t matter if we just finished eating before visiting her, she always placed some food on the table. “No Thank you” wasn’t something she could understand easily. If our stay was for a few hours, she would ask us at least 20 times if we wanted something to eat or wanted to try this or that.


Back then, women were making most everything at home. They didn’t have big grocery stores around the corner and also lots of them were living in rural areas so going to the city was only by necessity. People were pretty much self-sufficient especially when it came to food.


My grandmother was privileged to receive a very good education in a private school. She learned from the “nuns” what a young girl from society should learn and one was obviously cooking. Not just because she was my grandma, but boy did she ever know how to cook. I wish we had lived closer together so I could have visited her more often and learn even more from her.


What I am about to share with you in this video is her “toffee” chocolate bars. I put toffee in quotes because that is what she used to call them. Commercially, these are called Crunchie Bars. After you make these, you won’t believe how close they are to the ones you can buy at the store. Honestly, I’d rather make my own than buy them, because I know what goes into the recipe…I don’t need all the extra preservatives. If you want to be the star of your neighborhood during Halloween, you’ve got to try them…
Bon Appétit!


For ingredient amounts and more info, visit


Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Meat Manicotti

I started learning how to cook/bake in the 80s’. As a novice, I had a few recipes that I was proud of. No, I wasn’t cooking any Beef Wellington or Chateaubriand but whatever simple dishes I was executing turned out to be pretty good. This is how I started to get some confidence in my cooking journey.

One thing I liked to do was to make my favorite dishes from childhood… not sure but I think we kind of all do that, right? Anyway, one of them was pasta. It was easy to make and the chance of failure was pretty low until I started to venture further afield. This is when I realized that stuffing pasta can be quite a challenge!

In today’s video, I’ll share with you my “yummy in the tummy” Meat Manicotti. You’ll understand why it is so “yummy” when you make it. It has tons of flavors and the combination of ingredients makes this dish a star. Each time I serve it, everyone start saying “mmmm” around the table…! As many of you probably gave up on manicotti & cannelloni stuffing, I’ll show you my little trick to ease the stuffing process. After this, you’ll be more inclined to make this dish more often.
Bon Appétit!


For ingredient amounts and much more, visit

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Tomato Rosemary Foccacia

Making bread at home can be intimidating although there’s no reason to be. Yes I know…if you knead it too much or add too much flour, the bread will get hard. As the saying goes “Practice makes perfect” which can be true in most cases but not for this one.

Focaccia is the most ancient bread from Italy and still popular today. It was the architype of our modern pizza and while similar to it, focaccia is different in many ways. This flat oven-baked bread is flavored with herbs, seasoned with olive oil and often topped with more herbs, vegetables, meat and cheese. Focaccia is very versatile in its use as sandwich bread, a replacement for garlic bread, an antipasto or appetizer if you prefer. It all depends on the way it is dressed.

In this video, I’ll show you my version of focaccia. I like to serve my Tomato Rosemary Focaccia as an appetizer along with cheese, pâté, preserved peppers, a variety of olives, marinated and fresh vegetables. It is a nice presentation versus just plain bread and also much more flavorful. If there’s any leftover, it is nice to use it the next day as sandwich bread or just to snack on.

If you feel insecure about making bread at home, here’s the perfect recipe to gain some confidence and brag about your new skill to your guests. There is also a lot of satisfaction that comes with it. C’mon fresh homemade baked bread…who doesn’t love this idea!
Bon Appétit!


For ingredient amounts and much more, visit

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Smoky Bacon Creamed Corn

What is a side dish? According to “Wikipedia”, a side dish may be some type of vegetable (salad can be considered as a side dish) and a starch along with the main protein. But what about when a side dish turns into a more “complex” composition…

In this video, the meaning of a side dish is totally out of bounds and isn’t that what cooking is all about? – innovative, creative and out of your comfort zone. This Smoky Bacon Creamed Corn is a pretty diverse combination for a “side dish”. It has vegetables, dairy, meat and seasoning.

Let’s not fool ourselves…this is not a “low-cal” dish! Even though its rich, this side dish is a perfect accompaniment for many proteins and after you try it, you’ll be making it more often than you think.
Bon Appétit!


For ingredient amounts and much more, visit

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Sweet & Sour Pineapple Pork

I enjoy Asian cuisine but in today’s video, this recipe is more “American-Asian” fusion. Pork, as you know, is a lean meat when the fat is trimmed. It is also one of the most consumed meats in the world. There are many ways to prepare pork and technically, everything about this animal can be eaten…yes that includes the head, ears, tongue, etc. I like to try new dishes but today I’ll be conservative.

Although I like sweet once in a while, I am not a fan of it when it comes to my main course unless it’s not the predominant flavor. One dish that I’ve always enjoyed since I was a kid is Sweet and Sour Pineapple Pork (chicken can be substituted here of course). I also loved garlic ribs but we’ll do that recipe another time.

In this episode, I’ll share with you my very easy and extremely flavorful Sweet and Sour Pineapple Pork. I tried to duplicate this recipe as close as I could from memory and I have to say, the result is not too shabby at all! It is a great flavorful dish to make and I’m sure you and your family will enjoy it.
Bon Appétit!


For ingredient amounts and much more, visit

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Turkey Noodle Soup

If you are like me, you probably bought a big turkey for Thanksgiving. You invited a large group and still have a ton of meat left over. Your husband and children know what’s for lunch this week as well as what’s on the menu for the next 2 or 3 dinners. That doesn’t mean you should feel blasé after a couple days of eating turkey.

The beauty of leftover turkey is you can make so many dishes from it and each of them doesn’t have to taste the same as the other. One dish that is quick & easy to make is Turkey Noodle Soup. Add some vegetables, a few spices, noodles and you’ve got yourself a flavorful dish that everyone will enjoy.

Most of the time, October is pretty wet, gray and cold so there is nothing more comforting than eating a delicious bowl of soup.
Bon Appétit!


For ingredient amounts and much more, visit

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Citrus Cranberry Sauce

I love thanksgiving for many different reasons and of course one of them is eating that big juicy turkey. Although I enjoy this protein very much, the perfect condiment that goes super well with it is cranberry sauce! It’s like the cherry on top of the sundae. You can eat turkey without it but why would you??? You’ll be punishing yourself for no reason!

Cranberry sauce will probably be the easiest dish to prepare during Thanksgiving and yet you can brighten it up by simply adding a few ingredients. Although you can be very creative with the sauce, I prefer mine on the simple side with a touch of yummy goodness to change it up.

I won’t spoil the mysterious ingredients – is it really mysterious after all – but if you prefer not adding any, the result will still be delicious…this is entirely up to you. After all, you’re the boss of your Cranberry Sauce.
Bon Appétit!


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Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Pumpkin & Spice Cream Cheese Muffins

When I go to a large box store, I love getting deals on food and pumpkin pie filling is no exception. The only problem is the cans are usually bigger than normal and they make an odd number of pies. So what do you do with leftover pumpkin pie filling which isn’t enough to make
a pie?

There are also so many recipes that ask for only half a package of cream cheese… then what? What do you do with the remaining amount?

Perhaps I have the right solution for you…how about my Pumpkin & Spice Cream Cheese Muffins. Not only are they delicious but they are packed with a surprise inside. When you bite one, you’ll realize what the surprise is all about…a delicious cream cheese filling.

This Thanksgiving dessert/snack takes a little time to make but the results are definitely worth the effort. That should take care of your leftover pumpkin pie filling as well as your cream cheese. Don’t disregard this recipe because everyone will love them.
Bon Appétit!


For ingredient amounts and more info, visit

Monday, 3 October 2016

Tomato Ripening Trick - Indoors - Tips & Tricks #7

During this time of the year, it might not be warm enough outside to finish ripening your tomatoes. Don’t worry, you can still continue the process indoors. To find out about this simple trick, watch this video.

For more info, visit