Brown Rice Greek Salad

Brown Rice Greek Salad | Project Yum

I have another weird vegetarian confession: I hate cucumber. It’s nothing personal… it’s just so watery and tasteless and… bleh.

Cucumber might be a weird thing to dislike, seeing as how it seems relatively inoffensive. But I distrust a vegetable without a flavour. It seems shady. You know how really watered-down Kool-Aid tastes? The vagueness of cucumber flavour reminds me of that. Yech.

But cucumber  is always showing up in otherwise delicious dishes, being all watery and pointless and taking up space. Take Greek salad, for instance. Feta? So salty and creamy. Tomatoes and olives? So flavourful and delicious. Raw onions? A little strong for my taste, but at least they serve a purpose. Cucumber? Why are you here, cucumber? Why?

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Super-Easy Homemade Naan

Super-Easy Homemade Naan | Project Yum

I’ve always been a bit terrified of making bread. I’m not really sure why… I guess it boils down to the whole “cooking is an art, but baking is a science” idea. There’s something about baked goods that seems much more screw-up-able than a pasta dish, for example. (Unless it’s homemade pasta.. then it’s a whole different story.) Particularly baked goods that need to be kneaded and allowed to rise. It just always seemed so high-level to me.

Maybe this ties back to the fact that my mom has never been much of a baker. Don’t get me wrong, she makes awesome food! But with baked goods, especially when I was a little kid, she had a pretty consistent track record for burning cookies. I was usually the kid bringing store-bought cookies to the school bake sale. (I know, super traumatizing, right? Just kidding, Mom.)

My house was always filled with delicious food, because both my parents would take turns cooking dinner. But we were never really huge bakers. I think maybe I took this baking bias with me when I moved out, thinking that breads, cakes, cookies, and scones were just out of my league.  Continue reading

Potato, Fennel & White Bean Soup with Braised Brussels Sprouts

Potato, Fennel & White Bean Soup with Braised Brussels Sprouts | Project Yum

So it’s still freezing cold out, and I’m still making soup. That is my life update.
And this is a wonderfully wintery soup. As much as I’d love to start thinking of spring being around the corner, the reality is that warm weather is a long way off and it remains firmly winter. I was shopping at the mall yesterday, and found myself in an odd predicament where all the clothes were pastel corals and blues in preparation for spring, yet the thought of buying and wearing any of the light, floral-patterned garments made me shiver. I’ll stick to hibernating in black and grey men’s-sized sweaters, thank you very much.
I mean, I’m not one of those Torontonians that’s constantly weather-obsessed, complaining regardless of the time of year. (Not that I encounter these people often, but I feel like it’s a prevalent stereotype.) I like cloudy days, I like hot weather, I like winter. But this is just ridiculous. I had to get a gym membership just so that I could avoid running outdoors.  Continue reading

Sleepy Kitty Sunday: How to make a cat bed out of recycled clothes

How to make a cat bed out of recycled clothes | Project Yum

I made one of these beds for Big Ben a few months ago and I couldn’t believe how easy it was! We had wanted to buy him a bed, but cat beds are kind of expensive, considering that they’re just shaped cushions. So, I figured that I would try to make him one instead.

And he actually likes it! We have one beside our bed in our room, and he sleeps on it next to us all the time. I’m mostly surprised by this because cats normally ignore anything you get especially for them, eschewing store-bought beds for shoe boxes and manufactured toys for tissue paper. Or electrical cords.

I recently did a massive purge of my closet, and figured that my newly-rejected clothes would make a fine second bed for Ben in the living room. He hasn’t quite warmed to this one yet, but he’s weirdly paranoid about stepping on unfamiliar soft surfaces (yoga mats terrify him) and will probably get over it.  Continue reading