Fresh Cucumbers With Cream

This is a recipe that will wake up your taste buds. It is a little different, but try it out.

  • 3 cucumbers, peeled
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 green onions, if using
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tbsp. white vinegar
  • 3 tbsp. sugar

Slice the cucumbers quite thin into a bowl and sprinkle with the salt. Let sit for about an hour. (Go make the coffee and pour yourself a cup).

Pour off the liquid, rinse well with cold water and place in a towel to carefully squeeze out any excess remaining water.

If using the green onion, clean it up and then slice thinly. Add to the cucumbers.

In a small bowl, combine the sour cream, sugar and vinegar, mixing well.

Pour over the cucumber mixture and toss to combine.

This salad is great with a baked fish entree.





Potato and Carrot Mash

This is a bit unusual, perhaps, but oh so tasty. This would be a wonderful side dish for a barbecued steak.


  • 1 lb. yellow fleshed potatoes
  • 1/2 lb. carrots
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 2 tsp. creamy horseradish
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • salt and pepper to taste

The potatoes and carrots should be peeled and cut into chunks. In a saucepan, cook the vegetables and the garlic until tender. This could take about 18 minutes. Drain really well.

In your electric mixer, combine the vegetables with the butter, creamy horseradish and sour cream until smooth. You may need to add a touch of milk to make the consistency you want. Add salt and pepper and serve with the steaks or ribs you have just taken off the barbecue.

Enjoy this dish.

The Most Amazing Yams Ever

I love-love-love yams any way you can cook them but this is a really cool way.


  • 4 medium yams, scrubbed clean
  • 4-6 bacon slices,
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 4 tbsp. butter, divided
  • 4 tbsp. pure maple syrup for drizzling

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prink each yam with a fork and wrap tightly in foil and place on a baking sheet. Bake until they are fork tender. (35-45 minutes).  Make a large X  across the top of each one and scoop out the flesh carefully. Do not break the shell apart.

Cook the bacon until crisp and chop finely. Set aside.

Mix together the yam flesh and butter. Spoon back into the shell and top with a dollop of sour cream, bacon bits and drizzle maple syrup over each one.

Oh my goodness these are wonderful. Serve with a favourite fish or steak dish and a crisp salad. What more could you ask for?

Smashed Potato Hors d’Oeuvres

Getting ready for the season of entertaining. Put this one to the side and become the great Hostess of the season.

  • 20 baby potatoes, scrubbed
  • Sour cream
  • salsa (store bought or homemade – your choice)
  • salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prick the potatoes in several places and place on a baking sheet.

Bake for about 20-25 minutes and pierce with a knife to ensure they are cooked through. If not, keep baking until they are.

Put on a rack to cool slightly then, on parchment paper, take a masher and press down with enough pressure to open the potato, but still keeping most of their shape. Season with a tiny amount of salt and pepper. Add a spoonful of salsa, then top with a generous dollop of sour cream.

Arrange on a pretty plate and serve.  These can be room temperature or barely warm. Yumm………………

Cheesecake With Fresh Figs

You may think this is an impossible Cheesecake to make due to the fact it is made with fresh goat cheese, but it is beyond delicious.


  • 1 cup finely grated gingersnap cookies
  • 2 tbsp. melted butter
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 pkgs. Philadelphia cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup soft, fresh goat cheese
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 large egg plus 1 large yolk
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • 6-8 fresh figs, sliced in half, lengthwise

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Spray an 8 inch springform pan with nonstick Pam. Combine the gingersnap cookie crumbs, butter and cinnamon together and press into the bottom of the pan.

In a bowl of your electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and goat cheese together until completely smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the sugar, sour cream, lime juice, vanilla and salt and combine until really well mixed. Add the whole egg and yolk and beat to combine. Sift the flour into the mixture and mix only to combine.

Scrape the mixture into the pan and bake for one hour. When the cake is done, it will look set but still a slight wiggle in the centre. The surface will not be tacky when touched.

Allow to cool down for 30 minutes. Remove the sides of the pan but leave the bottom on. Refrigerate 4 hours ( or overnight). It may crack while cooling but that is okay. I always put a pan of water in the bottom of the oven while baking and this eliminates the cracking. Just let cool down in the oven as well.

When ready to serve, cut into 12 slices, and make sure you run the knife under hot water after each cut. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream and a half of the fig on top.

Add a lovely dessert wine and enjoy. The conversation will be endless and that is what entertaining is all about.


Sour Cream Peach Cake

It is really an upside down peach cake but sooooooooo yummy! I think it is even better than pineapple upside down cake. Try it and tell me what you think.

  • 2 lbs. peaches, peeled, pit removed and sliced thin
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 cups, plus 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1  1/2 sticks butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1  1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 2  1/4 cups flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. almond extract
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2  cups sweetened whipped cream

In a large mixing bowl, toss the peaches with 1/2 tsp. of the cinnamon and 1 tbsp. sugar.

In a large oven-proof skillet combine the 1/2 stick of butter and 1/2 cup of the sugar over medium high heat, stirring constantly until the sugar melts and become caramalized and very syrupy. Remove from the heat.

Lay out the peach slices in a decorative pattern.

Now, cream the remaining sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add the remaining ingredients, not including the flour. Sift the flour and slowly add, beating well after each addition.

Pour this batter over the peaches and bake in a 350 degree oven for approximately 40-45 minutes until golden and begins to pull away from the side of the pan.

Remove from the oven and let cool down for about 15 minutes and invert on a pretty plate. Serve with whipped cream.

OMG, this is a comfort food for sure. Yummy, yummy, yummy.

Erika’s Stuffed Cabbage or Toltott Kaposzta

My machine doesn’t put the dots, double dots or apostrophe’s over the letters so go with what you are comfortable with.

As promised, this is one of the recipes our guide, Erika, gave me to post for you.



This is a little tricky as her measurements are in decagrams, so bear with me.

  • 1 lb. ground meat (pork ribs and smoked turkey leg)
  • 4-5 cloves of crushed garlic
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • pinch each of salt, pepper and ground caraway seed
  • 2 tbsp. mild, sweet paprika
  • 6 oz. uncooked rice (always one third of the amount of meat)
  • 25-30 pickled cabbage leaves
  • 2.2 lbs. sauerkraut (no error here)
  • 1 bunch fresh dill,
  • 2-3 bay leaves,
  • smoked sausage, sliced
  • apple slices, enough to cover surface

Rinse the sauerkraut under running water.

Combine the meat, garlic, onion and all the ingredients of the filling together until well blended.

Flatten the cabbage leaves and, if necessary, remove the thick stalks from the centre.

Place a small amount (like the size of a walnut in shell) of the meat mixture on each leaf and roll it up firmly, folding the edges under.

Pour a little olive oil in a large stock pot and about one third of the sauerkraut in it, spread some of the fresh dill and smoked, sliced sausage on top. Layer the stuffed cabbage rolls on this and a couple of bay leaves, then repeat the process again with the sauerkraut, dill, sausage slices, bay leaves.

Cover the entire surface with the remaining sauerkraut and layer apple slices on top. Pour water to cover the contents and simmer it over low heat for several hours.

Serve with sour cream and fresh white bread.


This recipe was her grandmother’s and is a keeper. Thanks Erika.


Noodle Kugel

This is a sweet casserole usually served at Yom Kippur, but it is delicious anytime. It is a sweet noodle yummy dish. Try it!


  • 1/2 pound wide kosher egg noodles
  • 1/2 stick butter, melted
  • 1 pound cottage cheese (4%)
  • 2 cups sour cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 6 eggs, well beaten
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Boil the noodles in salted water for only 4 minutes. Strain the noodles.

In a large mixing bowl, mix the remaining ingredients until smooth, add the rasins at the end and pour into a greased (buttered) 9 x 13 baking dish.


Kugel Topping

  • 2 cups cornflakes, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

Stir together the cornflakes, sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle evenly over the noodles.  Dot the butter over the top. Bake for about 1 hour until golden brown.

Let stand a good 5 minutes before serving.


Zucchini With Cheese

Boy, the Italian side of our extended family are going to love me this week.


  • 1  1/2 lbs. zucchini
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • generous pinch of salt
  • 1  1/2 tsp. dried oregano leaves
  • pinch of pepper
  • 1/4 cup Avocado oil
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup grated Asiago cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8 x 8 baking dish. With a brush, scrub the zucchini well and cut into 1/4 inch slices (crosswise).

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, pinch of salt, 1/2 tsp. oregano and pinch of pepper. Toss the slices in the flour to coat well.

Slowly heat the oil in a large skillet. Saute the zucchini until golden brown (about 4 minutes) on both sides. Drain.

Cover the bottom of the baking dish with the zucchini and top with the tomato slices. Combine the remaining ingredients and spoon evenly over the tomatoes. Sprinkle the cheese over the top.

Bake for 30-35 minutes – cheese should be melted and the zucchini tender.

Another great side dish. This will serve 6.



Mushrooms in Sour Cream

I have to tell a little secret…I love mushrooms any way – cooked, raw, sauteed, stuffed…it doesn ‘t matter. You should try this one as it is a real winner.


  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 1/2 lb. fresh white mushrooms, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • pinch of pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1 1/4 cup sour cream

Melt the butter in a skillet and saute the onion until golden. Add the mushrooms and 1/2 cup water.  Simmer, covered until mushrooms are tender  (about 15 minutes). You might have to add a bit of more water.

Add the salt, pepper, paprika, 2 tbsp. chopped parsley and sour cream. Heat very slowly (do not let this boil or the cream will separate) until hot through all.

Before bringing to the table, sprinkle with the remaining parsley.


Cheese And Ham Tartlets

This is an easy recipe because you can use the frozen unbaked tart shells. Okay, sometimes I cheat….just a little.


  • 2 cups grated Swiss cheese
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped cooked ham steak, fat removed
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • pinch of salt and pepper

Combine the cheese, ham, shallots and sour cream in a medium bowl and mix really well. Add the salt and pepper.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Arrange the tart shells on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven.

Evenly distribute the cheee mixture in the shells and return to the oven and bake a further 10 minutes (until the cheese mixture is hot right through and the cheese is melted.

Serve warm. There won’t be any leftovers, I promise!

Yam and Russet Mashed Potatoes

Last night we had company for dinner and always wanting something a little different, I used yams (orange kind) and large russet potatoes. Try this….


  • 2 medium-large yams
  • 2 large russet potatoes
  • 1 large egg
  • several tbsp. butter
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese
  • generous splash of whipping cream (okay,I didn’t say this was diet food, did I?)

Peel and chop into 2 inch pieces both the yam and potatoes and put in a large pot with water. Cook until they are soft right through. Drain. Mash with a potato masher first. This way you don’t get lumps.

Transfer to bowl of mixer, beat until smooth and add the butter, cream cheese, whipping cream  and sour cream and mix thoroughly.

Spoon into casserole bowl with lid.  If not using right away, cover and put in fridge until dinner time. Add a dollop of butter on top of potatoes and before serving, put in oven of 325 degrees for about 30-40 minutes to heat through.

The colour, of course, is still orange, but the flavour is really scrumptuous.

We served this with freshly steamed asparagus and corn. We had roasted chickens as well.

When we put on dinners, we always plan ahead and prepare ahead as much as possible. This allows you, the host, to spend time with your guests and still be on top of things in the kitchen. Try it!