May 31, 2011

So long, roots!

 
5A, medium ash brown. comes with latex gloves, formula, activator, pump, two packets of conditioner treatments and instructions.
 
Tuesday afternoon, I finally brought myself to dye my hair. It was about time, as the last time I coloured it was about half a year ago. Obviously by that time, the colour had washed out and I was left with roots, much darker than the rest. Ugly! So, because I have about 14 boxes of Clairol nice 'n easy colour blend foam in my stock room (I have a mini drug store in my house, not even exaggeration) I decided to give this new product a whirl. I have heard and read mixed review about this, but I can't be shelling out $15 for dye..when I have some at home. Worse comes to worst, I shave my head. Richard and I can then shave our heads together! ...you know, like couples do.
 
 Mixing the two hair colour components together

This product had a following of issues and con's when it first came out. The instructions weren't clear and there were a lot of complaints. The fact that consumers weren't familiar with using a foam dye, compared to the traditional creme formula also helped fuel the negative comments and feedback. Clairol has since done a hefty amount of damage control and it gave me enough confidence to try it out. Instructions were simple, you add bottle 1 into bottle 2 and combine. Do not shake this vigorously! You don't want to foam up the liquids in the bottle. Keep it as foam free as you can. I just swirled mine for a minute and gave it two shakes. Put your gloves on, squeeze the bottle upright and apply like you would shampoo. 
 
The ball of foam, about to be applied to my hair
Let me tell you.. my bathroom stunk so heavily of chemicals it was out of control. Even Tank ran away! & as many have said, this stuff stains your scalp/bathroom/towels like crazy. I wouldn't recommend using this the night before a big night.. dye it maybe 4 to 5 days before. Anyway, the formula didn't drip everywhere and one bottle was more than enough to saturate my long hair. 30 minutes later, you wash and condition. I can't say my hair felt healthier but it didn't feel damaged. The colour isn't splotchy and hopefully it'll last awhile!  One thing to keep in mind though is that this dye, comes out really dark. Knowing this ahead of time, I chose 5A - medium ash brown. I love the colour as it's really close to my natural colour. It should really be named dark ash brown, though. If you're going platinum or wanting to go platinum, skip this and head to a professional! You won't find results here.
Would I shell out money to buy this? Probably not, as there are other hair dyes I'd prefer out there. Over all I'd give this product a 2.5 out of 5; depending on how long it lasts, I might re-review it.
Oh, I recently received a FPC to try out Clairol's Natural Instincts hair colour, so it looks like I'll be testing that out soon too!

May 27, 2011

Bloom



Flowers I took photos of while on a neighborhood stroll with Richard
With Spring, come flowers...and lots of rainy showers. It's seems to be like there's been more gloomy rainy days this Spring than sunny days and cool breezes - something we all look forward to! Not too hot, not too smoggy, just right. Well, I can't wait any longer! As much as I love wearing my wellies everywhere, I'd much prefer flip flops. Plus, my new garden which Rich and I dug out the other day (photos to come)  which hold my transplanted seedlings need lots and lots of sun. I want to a bountiful harvest!! I also transplanted my Lumina pumpkins and Sugar Baby watermelon. Here's hope to them fruiting and not getting "weeded out" before they get a chance to grow!

May 26, 2011

Brunch sandwich

Here's one of my favourite brunch/anytime sandwiches! It's got all your food groups in it and it's a relatively healthy comfort food. Yum- the perfect contrast of a warm omelet, slices of cold tomatoes, smokey turkey (or bacon!) and tangy mayonnaise. Or you could go old school and just make an egg, tomato and mayo sandwich, which is what my mum use to make for me. It's just as good and vegetarian! This baby lasted about 2 minutes, as I literally inhaled it.  :)


A healthy smearing of Hellman's on Dempster's whole grain toast, pre-toasted


Smoked Cajun turkey cold cuts with two slices of juicy tomato


Topped off with a simple omelet, salt and pepper and then with another piece of whole grain toast


I love dill, so I add it in wherever I can! 

Bye bye Zellers!

 


If you reside in Canada and have a Zellers near by, Target has officially unveiled which locations they are taking over. E X C I T I N G ! ! ! The first wave of stores will be open early 2013. I'm so happy to know that the (crappy) loctaion 5 minutes from my house will be one of them. Click here to see the list!

May 25, 2011

Weekend lazy days


My favourite way to eat pancakes
You're going to think I'm gross.
We woke up in the afternoon to the sun shining brightly and the sky a pretty blue. I hopped in the shower and did my make up. I went into the kitchen to find brunch waiting for me <3 Rich had made us pancakes! He ate half of his though while waiting...because apparently he got really hungry, lol. So, what the hell is all that crap on my pancakes? Maple syrup, garlic,dehydrated vegetable flakes salt and pepper. I also like slices of aged old cheddar on the side. Yep. Judge all you want, but it's the perfect sweet/savory combo!
Oh and I like to eat it with my fingers... hehe

Easy vegan pancakes, serves 2


1
cup
flour
1
tablespoon
sugar
tablespoons
baking powder
1/8
teaspoon
salt
1
cup
soy/rice/almond milk + 1 teaspoon vinegar
2
tablespoons
vegetable oil
vanilla (optional)

Heat your pan/griddle to medium/high, spray with vegetable oil. Add your wet ingredients into your dry and stir to combine. Don't over mix! Little clumps are fine. Sometimes you'll need to add more soy milk to get the desired consistency.. Spoon the batter and wait for it to bubble in the middle- this is when it's time to flip. Cook for another minute, serve.
Yummy variations: Cocoa powder, chocolate chips, blueberries, bananas, cinnamon, dried fruits, citrus zest, toasted coconut, sub in coffee instead of milk, brown sugar instead of white, try different flours (buckwheat, whole wheat, bran flakes, rice, oat etc)  flavoured milk instead of regular (just make sure to take out a couple tbsp of sugar if your milk is sweetened), different extracts...


Strawberries 'n cream jello




During a  walk around the neighborhood, we saw a little bunny in it's outdoor cage. Cute!


Mushrooms




The entrance to the ravine, sundown.

May 24, 2011

Saturday's dinner


No burger bun? Fear not!

Richard and I barbequed again this weekend! I really wanted to try out those new Jane's "pub style" chicken burgers I bought. They are made of chicken breast and are really flavourful. Crispy exterior and a juicy interior- you can totally make your own McChicken with these things. They're not really healthy as they do contain 12 grams of fat, 580 milligrams of sodium and are 210 calories each but everything in moderation! These are totally worth oink-ing for.

My original plan was to plop this on a squishy white burger bun, but upon inspection, I noticed a patch of blue fuzz. Bread mould! Gross. Tossed them. What's a girl to do?! FRENCH BAGUETTE!!! A light smearing of butter, some garlic, salt and pepper. Grilled it, added ranch sauce, lettuce and made my sandwich. Gone in 5 minutes, in my tummy. :)

Smart Shopping


Loblaws
02 x Kellogg's Corn Flakes @ $3.99ea = $7.98 - FPC = FREE!
03 x Glade Sense 'n Spray @ $9.99ea = $29.97 - FPC = FREE!
03 x Nice 'n Easy foam hair dye @ $11.49ea = $34.47 - FPC = FREE!
01 x Colgate Total @ $1.44 - 50% = 72¢ - $1 coupon = up 28¢
08 x Ziploc storage/freezer bags @ $2.99 = $23.92 - $24 in coupons = up
Total: up $4.26 + $10.54 tax = $6.28




Canadian Tire
07 x Snuggle 20 count dryer sheets @ 99¢ea = $6.93 - $8 in coupons = up $1.07
(I went to self checkout and  handed the supervisor my coupons for her to enter them in. She comes back to me with change. I told her that I haven't paid yet! But she mumbles something about overages and walked away. In the car, I realized what happened. She had entered in 8 coupons instead of 7. Can't say I didn't try..)
Total: up $1.07 + 90¢ tax = up 17¢ (+ 5¢ CT money)


Wal-Mart
02 x Red Rose tea 144ct @ $3.64 = $7.28
01 x Sunlight dish soap @ 99¢ - $1 coupon = up 1¢
02 x St. Ives body lotion @ $2.99 = $5.98 - $3 in coupons = $2.98
01 x St. Ives face wash @ $2.99 - $2 coupon = 99¢
09 x Gillette travel foam @ $1.27 = $11.43 - $15 in coupons = up $3.57
03 x Olay travel lotion @ $1.57 = $4.71 - $6 in coupons = up $1.29
01 x Valley Farms fries @ 74¢
10 x Limes @ 10¢ea = $1.00
01 x Janes chicken burgers @ $5.97 - $2 coupon = $3.97
01 x Green Giant @ $1.97
01 x Dempsters fresh baguette @ $3.47 - FPC = FREE! (not shown)
Total: $15.06 + $3.39 tax = $18.45

Tank loves Spring


Tank, happy to be finally let outside.

I'm not the only one happy about the warmer weather! Other than the humidity and random down pouring of rain, I love being outside in the sun. Tank's loving the warm sun and the cool breezes as well, especially after being house bound for most of the Autumn and Winter. Oh the life of an indoor cat. So on days like this, I put on her little harness, clip on her leash and I let her out! We'll sit and lounge until the sun moves on and it starts to get chilly again. It's really nice. She likes being able to sniff around, investigate little bugs, explore , chase leaves and chew on fresh, dewy  grass. My little lawn mower <3.


Soaking up the rays under the bright, hot sun.
Seasonal shower soon for this little one. I know cat's are self cleaning, but I like giving her a soapy shower at the end of every season. It's easier in the warmer months because I can just let her air dry in the sun where she won't get cold. Tank's pretty much gotten use to it and will tolerate being soaked. She's been conditioned since she was a wee kitten!

Last Friday the 13th


The cake that Rich baked and decorated! (I added the coloured sugar, hehe)

Wow, I'm kind of behind on posting. Last Friday, May 13th was the Smallville season finale. Now, I'm not a huge fan and I've never followed this show until a couple years into my relationship with Rich...but he's been watching the series for years and years now so it was important he/we watch it (and re-watch it, on Sunday night , lol). And for this special event, Richard took it upon himself to bake a Superman cake. Haha, such a nerd! <3 But c'mon it's kind of cute.. he put the crystals on and everything. The little figure on top was from when he was a kid (I think)! It was a dark chocolate cake with vanilla frosting. Yum!

Homemade turkey burgers with sautéed cremini mushrooms, raw onions and various sauces. D'lish!

Richard and I also had our first BBQ of the season, so that was really nice. There's just something about barbequing that makes food taste so much better. It's fun and practically clean up free and no clean up is always welcome around here. Making your own turkey burgers is quite simple. I like making them like I would make meatballs. Get some ground up turkey (lean is good), depending on how much of it you have, add an egg or two, some bread crumbs (fresh or not, doesn't matter), milk, seasoning and mush together. Done. The most important thing is to make sure they are fully cooked in the middle. 165 degrees F and you're good to go! The great thing is, you can make them ahead of time and freeze them. I like to do this because then I've got a variety of burgers on hand to choose from. Those free Ziploc's that I've been stocking up on are definitely handy. :) I love eating burgers and hot dogs on cheap-y white buns. They're so soft and airy! It's the only way to go!
 
Grilled corn, of course! We'll be eating more and more of these as the season gets warmer and they get cheaper, mMm!


Hi!

May 20, 2011

(UN) skinny girl donuts


Success!

After failing at baking these suckers, I turned to my stove. Heated some more veg oil and tossed a couple dough rings in. (I didn't actually toss them...oil burns anybody?) They smelt like donuts and they looked like them...but I had my doubts. Sure enough after letting them bubble & sizzle for about 25 seconds on each side, they came out golden with a somewhat crispy exterior. Yesssss!

After mixing the dough and letting it proof once, roll it out and cut into desired shapes. I chose the standard circle with the round punch out.

Proofed (second time) into a soft and spongy ring of dough!


They rose a fair amount and here you can see the air pockets created by the yeast.


Three different stages in the cooking process


Naked donuts in all their crispy, fried, golden goodness!


Perfect spongy interior.


I mixed up some vanilla icing while I waited for them to cool. Dyed it a pretty teal.


Plunk!


Allowing the excess icing to drip off, before adding our sprinkles


2 of the 4 sprinkle varieties shown here: non-pereils and miniature hearts


Jimmies <3


Happiest donuts in the world!

 So, my final conclusion is that the recipe is great for frying. I might try baking them once more..but if you're making these, be prepared to fry 'em :) The donuts were super yummy though, so chances are I probably will make them again. The recipe can be found here.

Tank approved. <3

Donuts, continued...


A basket of failures

The recipe mentioned in my last post, called for the dough to be baked. I was so, so, so excited to finally be able to make baked donuts that were healthier than the fried-in-a-vat-of-oil variety. Alas.. it was a huge failure. I had high hopes! They did indeed turn bread like- no quite a bagel (bagels are boiled, chewier, denser etc.) but it definitely was not donut texture. Boo. Though if you much on them with a pat or two of butter, they do taste quite nice...

Who am I kidding?! If you add butter to anything it's oughta taste fab.

Batch two in the mini oven, I was still hopeful at this point. :(



4am donuts!


Tank being curious and inspecting the mysterious pink confection

It's nearly 4 in the morning and being the night owl that I am, I start to browse tastespotting.com. It's a fabulous site if you enjoy nice food photographs, are looking for inspiration for your next meal or even just recipe browsing! I always feel more like making the recipe when there's a visual to look at. You know like, "This is what you're making and when you're done...it can look like this too!" So I stumble across this baked donut recipe which seemed easy enough. It didn't look...bagel like, if you know what I mean. It looked soft, fluffy and full of airy dough-y-ness- just like if it were fried. I was sold. So what if it's 3:48am..donuts it is!

Okay, so I'll admit that I didn't feel like waiting a full 2 hours until the dough had risen a second time. The recipe gave me about 35 mini donut rounds so I took about 10 or so and fried them up in a pot of hot vegetable oil. They might not be as healthy as they could have been...but that's okay. They're pink and super cute! I made a simple icing, consisting of cream, confectioners sugar, a touch of corn syrup and vanilla. Got out my white and pink food colouring and the result was a Peptol-Bismol bubble gum pink, creamy icing.

Classic vanilla glazed

I think that they're a perfect size!  You can eat 3 of them at one time without feeling too guilty...haha.


I gotta say though, that white sprinkles are my favourite. The coloured ones are fun, but white is just so much better looking! I'm talking about sprinkles and only sprinkles here..lol


I still have another two dozen or so that I'm going to bake up in the oven. Hopefully they'll turn out wonderfully light and airy! Maple glaze? Jam filled? Nutella? Toasted coconut? I'm also going to try to tweek the recipe into a vegan version this weekend. Wish me luck!

May 19, 2011

Smart Shopping


Loblaws
02 x Vector cereal @ $2.99ea = $5.98 - FPC = FREE
01 x Airwick Freshmatic @ $16.99 - FPC = FREE
01 x Nice 'n Easy foam @ $11.49 - FPC = FREE
04 x Cadbury creme eggs @ 24¢ea = 96¢
Total: 96¢ + 15¢ tax = $1.09



Wal-Mart

04 x Majesta 32ct bathroom @ $4.98 = $19.92 - $10 coupons = $9.92
02 x Kelloggs Special K @ 3.97 = $7.94 - FPC = FREE
09 x Gillette travel foam @ $1.27 = $11.43 - $15 coupons = up $3.57
05 x Olay travel lotion @ $1.57 = $7.85 - $10 = up $2.15
Total: $4.20 + $5.10 tax = $9.30
 



Petsmart
02 x Friskies part mix @ $1.69 = $3.38 - $1 coupon = $2.38
01 x Meow Mix treats @ $1.29
Total: $3.67 - $3 store coupon = 67¢ + 21¢ tax = 88¢





Michael's
04 x Basket filling @ 24¢ea = 96¢
02 x Butterfly dishes @ 34¢ea = 68¢
01 x Mini hippo toy @ $1.50 - 40% = 90¢ (not shown)
03 x random Easter candy @ 10¢ea = 30¢ (not shown, lol)
Total: $2.54 + 33¢ tax = $2.87



Free cereal is great, but the fact that they came with free Eggos and free bananas coupons on the box are even better! 

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Hi, I'm Janetta from Toronto. I cook, bake and often veganize recipes. I photograph nearly everything and those photos will most likely end up being posted here. I've got a little black cat named Tank, who's really cute and a little bit nosy. You'll see a lot of photos of her too!

Contact me at: jubesandtank@gmail.com

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