Archive for March, 2011

Crocuses everywhere

A few photos to show you that spring has arrived in Vancouver. Our daily two-block dog walk has turned crocus crazy the past couple of weeks. These pretty purple, white and yellow flowers are everywhere – in gardens, around tree trunks and best of all, littered wildly along the curbs. They are even attracting a few sleepy bees.

More spring flower photos here.


March 26, 2011 at 12:49 pm 2 comments

Primulas in bloom

Vancouver experienced some very chilly temperatures a couple of weeks ago (even snow!), but luckily my primulas were hardy enough to survive the cold snap. I planted them in early February after seeing them displayed in these gorgeous, colourful rows at my favourite garden centre, Southlands Nursery,

It’s this time of year that makes me love living on the west coast. When we used to live in Victoria I always enjoyed the annual flower count and the bragging rights that come with being the first place in Canada to experience spring. And when I lived in Calgary this is the time of year I hated the most – waiting and waiting for the endless winter to cease.

There were primulas blooming in our tiny garden when we bought our new house here in Vancouver last year. It’s amazing to see them again and think of all the time that has passed and everything that can happen in the short space of a year.

March 10, 2011 at 9:26 pm 2 comments

Potato chickpea and kale curry

I wrote recently about the fact that I am now cooking with real cream. In the days of old, I was a substituter – always finding inventive ways to step around full-fat ingredients like cream, butter, cheese and oil. No more. Cream is now part of the weekly shopping list. That aside,  I am usually pretty health-conscious in my eating and cooking and I realize that it’s important to strike a balance. Gluten-free and vegetarian is the main fare coming out of my kitchen, and this curry dish with chickpeas, kale, and potatoes falls squarely in the virtuous category. Kale is also one of the few vegetables that is truly local this time of year. Walking around neighbourhood and community garden plots this winter, I’ve discovered that kale grows year-round in Vancouver. It will definitely be part of my cool-weather gardening mix this year.

Potato, chickpea and kale curry

4 cups cooked potatoes, diced about 1-inch square
1-1/2 cups chickpeas, drained (about 1 can)
2 cups chopped fresh kale
1-1/2 cups coconut milk (1 can)
2 tablespoons green curry paste
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon ginger juice
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

Combine potatoes, chickpeas and kale in a casserole dish. Mix together coconut milk, curry paste, sugar, soy sauce and ginger juice in a small bowl and pour over top potato mixture. Stir gently to mix. Bake in a 375F oven for 25-30 minutes and top with fresh cilantro.

March 1, 2011 at 12:31 am 2 comments

Flickr Photos

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