This and that: June 2012

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Oh! Canada

      July 1st is Canada Day and this will be my last Canada Day that I will be able to celebrate as a full Canadian citizen.  On June 11th I had my interview for my American citizenship and on July 18th I will go for the Oath Ceremony where I will become an American citizen.
    I have mixed feelings about doing this and although I have lived here in the States for 12 years, Canada is my home and will always be my home.  I was born Canadian and will die Canadian, but now I will also be American.  Making my decision to become American had many pros and cons and probably if I stated single, I wouldn't get my American Citizenship.... I pay taxes here and many people I meet think me as American until I say the word about, buried, semi and possibly a few more words that we say different.  But I can tell you it is not because I say "Eh".  I am not an "eh" girl and it is not part of my vocabulary.  I does make me laugh that people think that "eh" is a Canadian word as when I lived in central Wisconsin, I heard it more often there then I did when I was in Saskatchewan.
      As I sit wondering what I should do for my final All Canadian - Canada Day, I think about what food is Canadian.  The first thing that comes to mind at least to me is butter tarts.  Butter tarts are probably one of my favorite foods and is something we always made Christmas Eve for our evening get together.  YUM! my  mouth is watering.
Butter tarts  Link to recipe Here -- not my recipe but close
     Another food that I think of being truly Canadian is Nanaimo bars.  This bar has a wafer crumb based layer topped with a custard flavored butter icing and covered with melted chocolate squares.  So decadent and rich and delicious.
Nanaimo bar - picture taken from Wikepedia
link for recipe here
      Also when I think of Canada and food... I think of their chocolate.  In Canada we eat chocolate bars at least in the western provinces, not candy bars and even if they don't contain any chocolate bars they are still called chocolate bars.  My personal feeling is that the chocolate is better in Canada... even the kitkat tastes better with Canadian chocolate.  Here are some of my favorite chocolate bars:

Along with the chocolate bars, there are the potato chips.... ketchup chips, dill pickled chips, and salt and vinegar chips. Although they are found here in the states, they still taste better when I am at home...
             Home... Canada... The Maple Leaf forever.  I will be making something that is truly Canadian for Canada Day and I hope to post it on Canada Day.
                                       Til next time <3 <3 <3  Marlys

Friday, June 29, 2012

Spinach-Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

My strawberry patch has been wonderful this year and we have been able to eat fresh strawberries just about every day... at least the ones that the chipmunks don't get! I am not sure why they just have to take one bite out of many... It would be so much nicer if they just ate the whole strawberry and left some for me :). But the ones that they have gotten their chompers in go to the bird feeders so then either the chippies, squirrels or birds can have a feast on my strawberries.... But, anyways here is my recipe:
                           Spinach-Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing
spinach strawberry salad with poppy seed dressing

1/3 cup white sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tbsp poppy seed
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used sunflower oil)
1/4 tsp paprika

dried cranberries
red onions
glazed walnuts

For the dressing mix first 6 ingredients in a bowl until sugar is dissolved.  Let sit for a short bit so the flavors mix.  I let it sit on the counter top for approximately 1/2 hour.  Long enough for me to get some pictures and make the chicken that I had with it.
Combine the last 6 ingredients. I just add until I think there is enough of everything (do for your own taste)  Pour dressing onto spinach strawberry mixture or serve separately and let your guest use as much dressing as they would like.
I served this with grill chicken.. I sprinkled thyme, basil and greek seasoning on chicken breasts and grilled on my George Foreman Grill until chicken is cooked thoroughly.

with dressing

dressing on the side
      This is a great summer salad.  Enjoy!
                                      Until next time <3 <3 <3 Marlys

Links:  foodie friends friday, Anyonita Nibbles

Foodie Friends Friday! Linky Party

Foodie Friend Fridays ~~ great friends and great recipes

Friday again and this time I am on holidays.... or vacation as it is said here in the States.  This Friday our group is trying something new and exciting.  It is also new to me and I am hoping that I will be able to figure out what to do.  We are having a linky party and going to share our recipes through this way.  All our members will be host to our party and if you link on one you will link on them all.  I hope you will have fun with this and join our link party.  It is a great way for bloggers to get there blogs out there and notice.  Also with the link going to all the members pages... that is a lot of exposure. 
    This week I am going to feature my own recipe for this linky party:  Spinach-Strawberry Salad with Poppy seed dressing  My strawberry patch has been wonderful this year and we have been able to eat fresh strawberries just about every day... at least the ones that the chipmunks don't get!  I am not sure why they just have to take one bite out of many... It would be so much nicer if they just ate the whole strawberry and left some for me :).  But the ones that they have gotten their chompers in go to the bird feeders so then either the chippies, squirrels or birds can have a feast on my strawberries.... But, anyways here is my recipe:

                               Spinach-Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing


1/3 cup white sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tbsp poppy seed
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used sunflower oil)
1/4 tsp paprika

dried cranberries
red onions
glazed walnuts

For the dressing mix first 6 ingredients in a bowl until sugar is dissolved.  Let sit for a short bit so the flavors mix.  I let it sit on the counter top for approximately 1/2 hour.  Long enough for me to get some pictures and make the chicken that I had with it.
Combine the last 6 ingredients. These ingredients I just add until I think it is the right amount - use it as a guideline and to your own taste.  Pour dressing onto spinach strawberry mixture or serve separately and let your guest use as much dressing as they would like.
I served this with grill chicken.. I sprinkled thyme, basil and greek seasoning on chicken breasts and grilled on my George Foreman Grill until chicken is cooked thoroughly.

salad with poppy seed dressing on side

strawberry-spinach salad with poppyseed dressing.

 Here is a list of the Foodie Friends Friday members that are involved with the linky party... Please feel free to stop by all and enjoy their pages and their great recipes:

Robin's View
A 'lil Country Sugar
Saucy Girls Kitchen
Passione Per Cucina
Everything In ThevKitchen Sink
What's Cooking in the Burbs
Busy Vegetarian Mom
Cookies Cakes and Bakes
From Calculus to Cupcakes
Cupcakes and Kale Chips
Walking on Sunshine
Cafe Blue Ridge
Chef PickyKid and Me
Family Food Finds
Bringing Pleasure to the Kitchen
Cindy's Recipes and Writings
DJ's Sugar Shack

Also please link up your recipe to this party.  It will give you good exposure as remember if you link up with my blog your recipe will automatically link up with all the member's blogs above.  Here are some of the suggestions we ask you to do when linking up your recipe:

Make sure that anything you link up is:
  • Made by you
  • Not part of a sponsership/sales/giveaway
  • Linked to a specific page of your recipe, not your homepage
Other nice things you can do:
  • Show some love and link back to my blog and Foodie Friend Friday
  • Grab our button and put it on your page and share Foodie Friends Friday!
  • Take some time and check out other submitted links and the blogs of all of our gracious hosts
***Please note that by linking up you are giving permission to use photos/links to post on Foodie Friends Friday Hosts Blogs and/or Foodie Friends Friday.  If phots are used, proper linkbacks will be posted with them.


Wednesday, June 27, 2012


    Plantains are so good and they are good for you.  Plantains are a member of the banana family and are starchy and low in fat.    Per the Dole Nutrition Institute : " Plantains, or cooking bananas as they are often called, are longer, thicker-skinned and starchier in flavor than bananas.  Unlike, bananas, however they are loaded with the carotenoid antioxidants alpha-and beta-carotene.  They also contain resistant starch, which acts as a prebiotic, selectively nourishing the "good gut" bacteria that line the intestinal tract and protect against food borne illness. "  Although plantains are a fruit, they are most often used as a vegetable.  They are fried, boiled, mashed or grilled and are very seldom eaten rare unless very ripe.  My favorite way to eat them is either boiled or grilled and to me they aren't a vegetable but candy... they are so good!
      Before I got married, I had seen these big bananas in the store but never dared to buy them as I didn't really know what to do with them.  But, once I started to go to Africa I came to love, love, love them.  I am not partial to them boiled but the one time that we did have them boiled that was all we ate, so maybe if we had some meat to go with them they would be like a potato.
      This past winter when my hubby went home for a visit, my mother-in-law sent me some plantain chips and I just about ate them all in one sitting.  We had asked her to send some more but I guess plantain season isn't at this time, so today my husband decided to make some.
       Plantains is one of the necessities in my kitchen.  I usually buy them everytime I go shopping and the ones that I bought last week were just perfect for making plantain chips.  They were starting to ripen but were still firm to the touch but not green.  You don't want them to soft as then they won't be crisp.  Plantain chips and fried plantains are made basically the same, the only difference is how ripe your plantains are.  For plantain chips they plantains need to be just turning ripe and fried plantains are better if the plantains are very ripe and soft.

Plantain chips with plantain
                                                                             Plantain Chips

2 plantains that are firm to the touch
salt to taste
small amount of water
oil to fry - I used virgin Sunflower Oil

Cut plantains into quarter size rounds.  Place in boil, add salt to taste ( not quite a tsp) and small amount of water to help dissolve the salt and saturate the plantains.  Let sit for a few minutes.  Place oil, (depending on your pot, enough to slightly cover the plantains) in pot and heat.  Once oil is hot, place plantains in oil and fry until golden colour.  Remove and place in sieve to drain and oil and then place on plate.... Once cooled a little enjoy.  

cut plantains

plantains in oil

                                                           Fried Plantains

2 ripe plantains - soft or very soft to the touch
salt to taste
small amount of water
oil to fry

Cut plantains into approximately 1/4 inch pieces.  I cut the whole plantain into four and each fourth into approximately 1/4 inch size pieces.  Place in bowl and add approximately 1 tsp of salt and small amount of water to dissolve the salt and swish plantains in the salt water.  Heat oil and once hot, place in raw plantains and cook until dark golden colour.  Remove from oil and enjoy.
frying plantains

plantains are getting ready

                                                                Til next time <3 <3 <3 Marlys
linked:     foodie friends friday


BWS tips button

Friday, June 22, 2012

Foodie Friends Friday Featuring Tracy of Busy Vegetarian Mom

      Friday again and here I am trying to get my post ready.... you would think that I would do it early but NO!  I did do my research and picked out a couple of recipes that I thought I could make and write about, but as when the first day of summer came so did a summer cold.... and no energy to do anything.  So, I didn't make anything this week.
    This week for Foodie Friends Friday, I will be featuring Tracy from busy vegetarian mom.  As I am not a vegetarian, a lot of her recipes sounded very different to me... Different in a good way, something different to try. I have never eaten tofu and something that I would like to try.  I am the type that is willing to try anything once and I believe that you can't say that you don't like something if you haven't tried it.  One of the tofu recipes that I would like to try is Tofu Mango Avocado Salad ~ go Here for the link.  I think this would be a good place to start to try out tofu, as I love mango and avocados, so I could make a smaller size of the tofu.

picture courtesy of Busy Vegetarian Mom -doesn't this look so good

      Another recipe that I wanted to try is her grilled balsamic radicchio salad.  I have never tried radicchio and when I have seen it in the grocery store, I have thought of buying it but didn't know how to prepare it... Now I do and I am excited to use this recipe.

picture courtesy of Busy Vegetarian Mom

      Busy Vegetarian Mom has many wonderful recipes on her blog and even if you are not a vegetarian, I am sure you can change the recipes to suit your taste.  For example her recipe for Avocado Salad, the first time I ate this was in Togo and I make it with avocado, roma tomatoes, onions and sardines packed in oil.

picture courtesy of  Busy Vegetarian Mom

  It is summer time and salads are what come to mind for me but Busy Vegetarian Mom has more recipes then just salads, she has dinners, lunch, snack and desserts too.... Desserts you say...check out this wonderful ice cream

picture courtesy of  Busy Vegetarian Mom . YUM!
     I hope you have fun going through all the recipes on Busy Vegetarian Mom, as she has some great recipes.
                                                      til next time <3 <3 <3  Marlys

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Fish with rhubarb compote and strawberry salsa

Today is the first day of summer and strawberries come to mind for me... Probably because we are finally able to pick some out of our patch ~~ The last couple of years we haven't got too many and the birds seemed to pick more then I could ~~ I haven't figured out why they need to take my food when I set a wonderful table for them on their feeders.  But yesterday I was able to pick a good cup full and there was only one that someone took a bite out of and left the rest.  Another question I have ~~ Why can't they eat the whole thing then waste it by taking a bite or two and go to the next one.  I guess I probably won't be able to figure out the birds as our thought process just don't seem the same.    
       The other night when I was trying to decide what to make for dinner, I went through my kitchen to see what I had.  I wanted something different and I had some white fish that I had bought the week before and that needed to be used and the strawberries that I had bought were still sitting on the counter and I thought what about putting the two together.  So, I decided that I should find a recipe, so I typed into google search, fish and strawberry recipes and I found many delicious recipes.  Some I had ingredients for and some I didn't have all of the ingredients, but not one single recipe jumped out at me, so I decided to combine the recipes  and this is what I came up with... I thought it was delicious and I ended up eating most of the strawberry salsa and so needed to make a second batch for my husband.  As I was at work when he ate, I texted him to see what his response was  " I finished what was left in the fridge.  So imagine" ~~ he was talking about the strawberry salsa when he left this message.  He wasn't so keen on the rhubarb compote and thought that it was a little to sour for his taste... I grew up with rhubarb and love the tart taste to it and with the sweetness of the strawberries, I thought it was perfect.  This dish has a multitude of tastes... sweet, tart, moist and crunch and perfect for a summer's day meal.


                   Fish with rhubarb compote and strawberry salsa

1 lb white fish
1/2 tsp cumin
fresh basil
salt and pepper to taste

1 cup strawberries chopped
1/4 cup cucumber
1/4 cup red onion
1 pkg truvia
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp lime juice

2 cups rhubarb
2 tbsp agave nectar
1/4 cup water

      Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cut fish into serving sizes. Cover baking sheet with parchment paper and place fish on top.   Sprinkle cumin, salt and pepper and basil on each piece of fish.  Place in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes until fish is flaky.
     To make rhubarb compote.  Put rhubarb, agave nectar and water in pot, bring to a boil stirring until combined.  Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until rhubarb is soft, stirring occasionally.  Once cooked put aside to cool.
      For the strawberry salsa in bowl place strawberries, cucumber and red onion.  Mix truvia, balsamic vinegar and lime juice and pour into strawberry mixture and combine.
      Serve white fish with small amount of rhubarb compote and strawberry salsa.  Enjoy.

* the next time I make this I am going to grill the fish
* if you like sweeter rhubarb compote, add more sweetener.  You could also use sugar, honey or artificial sweetener instead of agave nectar.
* in the strawberry salsa you could also use any type of sweetener

fish with spices

rhubarb and strawberries

strawberry salsa

         Til next time...... <3 <3 <3 Marlys

Links: foodie friends friday,  Photobucket
Thursday's Treasures
Food Holiday Link Party


Saturday, June 16, 2012

Breakfast Casserole

Last evening as we were getting ready for bed, my husband requested this for breakfast.... And as a good wife, I got up an hour and half before he needed to leave so that I could make it for him.  He doesn't request things that often and he also said that the last time I made it, it was AWESOME ~~ yes, he said it in capital letters ~~ he said it was done to perfection, crispy and the eggs were done perfectly.  He also said you know the one that you make with Maggi liquid.  Well, I have never put Maggi liquid in this breakfast, although I will put it in when I make omelets and as I don't really use a cookbook for my recipes, I wondered if this breakfast would turn out as good as the last one or not........HHHMMMM. Let us see.

breakfast casserole

                                    Breakfast Casserole
This recipe I found in a cooking magazine and I don't even recall which one. I have made it many times, changing a few things each time I make it..... So please feel free to change it and add as you make it...... Remember recipes should be used as a guide and you should make them your own. 
Here is how I made it this morning:

Seasoning croutons (enough to cover the bottom of the pan)
peppers - I used red and yellow
onions - I use red onions
bacon or sausage or even both --- I do about 3 sausages when I use them or about 
        4-5 pieces of bacon and crumble into small pieces
cheese --- I use whatever I have on hand... and about a handful or so depending on 
      you taste... My husband thinks I use to much cheese, so I don't put alot in, so that
       he can't see it :)
5 eggs
1/4 cup milk or water
1 tsp garlic minced
1tbsp greek seasoning
splash of maggi liquid seasoning {I decided to try some this time}
salt and pepper to taste
1 roma tomato.

     Preheat oven to 350.  I use a 6 cup glass anchor dish (it measure 6.5 inches X 8 inches).  I sometimes spray it with PAM but today I didn't and it came out great.
    Place croutons in bottom of dish.  Cut up peppers, onions and mushrooms (or you can use whatever veggies you have on hand).  I don't measure but just cut until there is a layer over the croutons.  Spread bacon or sausage on veggie layer.  Sprinkle cheese over this layer.
     In separate bowl, mix eggs, milk, garlic, greek seasoning, maggi liquid seasoning, salt and pepper.  If I use maggi liquid seasoning I don't put in as much salt and sometimes none as the maggi is salty.  Spread this mixture over the croutons, veggie and cheese layer.  I do press down on the layers so that there is egg throughout everything.
      Cut up tomato and place over the egg mixture.  Place in oven and bake @ 350 for 45-55 minutes until golden brown and eggs are done.  The edges do get crispy but we like it that way... If you don't want it as crispy, don't cook as long, just cook until eggs are set.  

ready to go into the oven... Sorry the picture didn't turn out very good.
Did it turn out??? Yes, It was delicious and I think even better then the last time I made it.  Now I just need to make some homemade croutons instead of store bought for the next time...

served it with a side of fresh fruit and orange juice.
*** When I make this in a 6 cup baking dish, I cut it into 4 pieces... My husband usually eats two and I eat one... So I would say the serving is for 4.
*** If you want to add more eggs... to make it a bigger casserole that will work good too... Also you could replace some of the eggs with just egg whites to make it even healthier and add more veggies and no meat.

   This is an easy breakfast to make, takes a short time to prepare the veggies and cooking time is longer so you need to think ahead.  You can also make it the night before and put it in the refrigerator over night and pop it in the oven in the morning, as I remember that is how the recipe says to do it... I find the croutons get too soggy when it sits over night, so I just make it in the morning... Gives you time to check out some blogs, do some facebook time or even pintrest time while your loved ones are snoozing.
                        Till next time.  <3 <3 <3   Marlys

Friday, June 15, 2012

Foodie Friend Fridays - Featuring Brianne of Cupcakes and KaleChips

    It is Friday again... time to do my Foodie Friends Friday feature.   This week I am featuring Brianne of Cupcakes and Kale Chips.  I first came across Brianne through facebook and her name Cupcake and Kale Chips was intriguing to me, so I had to go over and investigate and I am glad I did.  Her blog is wonderful, she has many great recipes and I hope to be able to try some of them.  Her Chai Tea Smoothie is one that I wanted to try and since yesterday was my birthday, I thought today is the day to make my cup of chai more special and I certainly did by using a recipe from Cupcake and Kale Chip blog.... go here to find it~~~Chai Tea Smoothie.

picture courtesy of Cupcake and Kale Chips
my creation...
      As you know I use recipes as a guide and feel that a recipe should be a creation of your own taste, so I did my own thing to this recipe.  Brianne's recipe is wonderful as is, but I wanted to try and make it my own. I started out with coconut milk, as that was the only milk I had in the house and I used 1/2 cup of it with 1/2 cup of water and I also put in a scoop of ice cream.  Once I mixed it and let it sit to cool off (I put mine in the freezer as didn't want to wait), I added a dash more of nutmeg, cinnamon and cardamen ~ not sure if I just didn't let the chai sit long enough or what but it need more kick for me and adding the spices helped.  Also, the leftovers I put back in the freezer and froze it for a couple of more hours.  When I brought it out I put it back in the blender, blending it until it was smooth and all I can say is YUM!
  She has also added some salad recipes over the last few days and with summer on it's way they are something that I want to give a try...  They look so colourful and delicious and her pictures make it so that you want to eat them off the page... so, so yummy. 

picture courtesy of Cupcakes and Kale Chips 
Don't you feel like you could just pick up that fork and enjoying a great summery salad?  Find this recipe Here

picture courtesy of Cupcakes and Kale Chips
                                         Find this recipe Here.
     Summer is coming and we all need some great recipes to try and impress our guest with and what could be better then a smoothie and salads to get your summer going.... So jump right over to Cupcakes and Kale Chips for some great recipes and let her know that I sent you.
      Although it is not summer here today, I think I am going to go and make another Chai Tea Smoothie... they are so yummy and the flavor is out this world.   Til next.... <3 <3 <3  Marlys.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Foodie Friends Friday Review -Robyn's View

Once again it is Friday.... where does the time go?  It just seems like I just finish posting for foodie friends friday and it is time to do one again!  I must be getting old when I think the time is flying by so fast....
    But I can grow old gracefully and maybe even little more gracefully when I start using the products that Robyn has posted recipes for.  I have never thought of making my own products but after reading Robyn's blog, I thought why not? I need to save money ~~ and here are some great recipes to try.  I can't wait to try them.  This first product I saw was for AmAzinG Homemade Peppermint Foot Cream ~~ Peppermint Foot Cream ~~ I am in love.  I use a peppermint foot cream just about every night... now I can make my own and probably much cheaper..So excited!!!

AmAzinG Homemade Peppermint Foot Cream
      The second product I feel in love with is Robyn's Homemade peppermint body wash.  Can you see a pattern.  Can you see a pattern... I <3 <3 <3 peppermint scent..

    And the best thing is... if I don't want to make it myself I can go to Robyn's Esty shop and buy atleast the foot cream from her.. I might just wait and see if she start selling the body wash too and buy both of them. Although I really should try making them myself...
    Along with these 2 products, Robyn has many other great products and her blog is full of many things.  Why don't you pop over there and check her out and make sure you let her know that I sent you.
                       Until next time <3  Marlys

Here is a list of all the blogs that are with Foodie Friends Friday and if you want to join just click on the site and request an invitation.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Baking... baking and more baking...


    This past weekend I spent in the kitchen getting ready for a fundraiser brunch for our church... We served Belgium waffles with whipped cream, strawberries and blueberries - both fresh and made into a sauce.  I was hoping to take pictures of the waffles but even though I remembered to take my camera, along with the rest of my kitchen, I  left the memory card in my computer. So no pictures..
      I made pulla which is a Finnish sweet bread, 2 different types of muffins and 2 different types of coffee cakes.  Today I will give you the recipe of the pulla I made.

     Growing up I had always heard this Finnish cardamon bread called pulla.  My Finnish sister-in-law called it pulla but when I moved to Yooper land of Michigan, everyone called it nisu. It looked and tasted the same to me so I had to do some investigation: is it the same... yes.  Nisu is "old Finn" and Pulla is "new Finn".  The Finnish word for wheat is "nisu" ~~ so it does make sense that this bread is called nisu.
      In Finland, pulla is always served with coffee or at least every where I went when we were served coffee, pulla was part of the coffee lunch.  The bread is normally made with a tradition 3 strand bread and is often made into a wreath shape for special occasions: birthdays, anniversary, name day or other honored celebrations.
        The recipe that I usually use when I make pulla is from a church cookbook. I love using church cookbooks as I feel that the recipes submitted are tried and true and usually with ingredients that are in your household.


  • 3 eggs                                                                                                                                     
  • 1 cup sugar                                                                                                                      
  • 2 cups milk (scalded)                                                         
  • 1 t. ground cardamon ( I use 1 tbsp)
  • 1-1/2 t. salt
  • 2 pkgs dry yeast, dissolved in small amount of water
  • 1/2 cup butter (melted)
  • 6-7 cups flour                                    

 Beat eggs and sugar well.  Add milk, cardamom, butter and salt.  Cool to lukewarm then add yeast.  Add flour and knead well.  You may use Kitchen Aid mixer.  Set in a warm place to rise until doubled.  Braid and put on greased pan.  Beat one egg and brush over tops of pullas before setting to rise.  Sprinkle sugar or pearl sugar. Let rise until almost doubled. Once they are close to double in size bake at 375 degrees for 25-28 minutes until nicely browned.  For caramel rolls or cinnamon loaf reduce the sugar to 1/2 cup.

Caramel for rolls:
3/4 cup brown sugar                                2 T. white corn syrup
1/2 cup cream
Bring to boil and pour into greased pans; put rolls on top, let rise until double in size and bake.

*  I normal use rapid rise yeast and add the yeast to the flour instead of putting it before the flour.  If using dry yeast - proof it by adding 1 pkg (2 1/4 tsp) to 1/4 warm water (100-110F) and 1 tsp sugar.
*  You may need more flour.  I just add flour until the dough is slightly sticky but doesn't stick to the bowl.
*  I put saran wrap and tea towel over the bowl when the dough is rising and will put the bowl on top of a warm oven or in front of a warm oven on a chair.

Letting the dough raise
*  If making cinnamon or caramel rolls - I roll the dough out and add melted margarine and a mixture of brown sugar and cinnamon.
*  I also use powdered sugar with milk to make a glaze and drizzle it over the ridges of the braid.
*  Also typical Finnish pulla will have sliced almonds on top.. This is done once you form your loaf, before putting it to rise again.

5 strand braid- small loaves
cinnamon buns

large loaf - 5 strand braid

rising the formed pullas

This batch  made into 3 loaves.. 2 small and 1 large and 18 cinnamon rolls. My rolls ended up being different sizes but they all turned out well.  I started to follow Chef in disguise and in one post there is directions to braid with 3, 4 and 5 strands.  Using the video I was able to finally due braids like a professional... Braiding like Chef in Disguise.  This video has helped me and I hope that it will help you.
               .............. Till next time  ~~~ <3 Marlys

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