This mechanical sewing machine uses buttons and dials to select the stitch type, width and length. The sewing table opens to store accessories and is removable to convert the machine to an open arm for use in setting in sleeves and mending pant legs.  |  Betty Ann Deobald photo

Sewing machines enter a new age with many choices

Sewing machines have changed dramatically in the past 10 years for two reasons: advancements in computerization and technology, and requests by quilters for specific features. The sewing machine manufacturing industry has eagerly embraced computer technology to create precision machines that now incorporate computerized artistic design features, a tablet-size screen for programming and robotic quilting machines. […] Read more

Potato picking day can be such a satisfying experience. This Caribe variety is great for mashed potatoes and is such a pretty colour with Yukon Gold in the background, used for baking.  |  Jodie Mirosovsky photo

The four Ss can help us make the most of fall cooking

It is perfectly natural for your food choices to change as the weather does. The refreshing cool salads of summer may not satisfy us now. Instead, we want warmth and comfort as the temperature drops. One evening, while browsing through some cookbooks to plan my menus, it suddenly came to me: autumn cooking often incorporates […] Read more

Sweet potatoes and  zucchini are quick and simple side dishes.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

End-of-season dishes for end-of-season vegetables

Although we can buy these foods all year round it is especially nice to have them fresh from the garden or farmers markets. End of the season is when we see the brussels sprouts, cabbages and apples. Cruciferous vegetables like cabbage and brussels sprouts contain high levels of many nutrients and are also a good […] Read more


Balsamic beef short ribs require a long cooking time with moist heat to make them nice and tender.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Instant Pot can make great meals … and Christmas presents

Many stores have already stocked their shelves with appliances for Christmas giving. The Instant Pot is front and centre for a second year. Before buying any appliance, consider how much use it will receive in your kitchen. Also, consider the space it takes either on your countertop or in a cupboard. If space is limited […] Read more

Grilling corn imparts a slightly smoky flavour to the kernels. Enjoy with burgers, ribs, chicken or steaks.  |  Betty Ann Deobald photo

Corn on the cob can be enjoyed in every season

Fresh corn on the cob is such a delicious treat during the late summer and fall. Freezing the corn will extend the enjoyment through the winter. A few years ago, a friend recommended Canadian Early Supersweet hybrid as a good variety of corn to grow and we have been enjoying this variety ever since. The […] Read more


Make a hearty tomato soup with chicken or beef stock added to tomato sauce. Make it a cream of tomato soup by adding whole cream just before serving.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Tomato sauce is a versatile ingredient

Canned tomato sauce is like summer in a jar that will keep throughout winter. Canning may not be as popular as it used to be but it remains the best way to preserve tomatoes. Roma tomatoes are the best for making sauce because they are meatier and have fewer seeds but any tomato can be […] Read more

As satisfying as the crispness of biting into a fresh apple can be, eventually we have to find different ways to use up the abundant crop.  |  Jodie Mirosovsky photo

Baking with apples is a great way to make the fruit last

Almost 20 years ago, I was dealing with a toddler and an infant. I can remember writing this column with one hand on the keyboard and the other holding the baby. I used this method of working many times to have peace and quiet to put my thoughts into words. This fall that new baby […] Read more

My grandmother’s little black cast-iron frying pan is part of my memory of her delicious, buttery scrambled eggs.  |  Betty Ann Deobald photo

Old family favourites can make for special to-go recipes

I have fond taste memories of my grandmother’s scrambled eggs. As a child, when I stayed at her house for a night she would make me the most delicious breakfast scrambled eggs in a little, cast-iron frying pan on her coal and wood stove. As an adult, I could never seem to duplicate her delicious […] Read more


A banana split with homemade sauces is a delicious treat on a hot summer day.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Jazz up summer with an ice cream sundae party

Summertime, or any time, is ice cream time. My father’s favourite treat was a banana split from the soft ice cream palace in town. Any sundae would do, but a banana split was nirvana. I don’t often indulge at home but why shouldn’t I? The toppings are so easy to make and taste so much […] Read more

Fresh corn is a farmers market staple.  |  Sarah Galvin photo

Corn: a nutritious and delicious garden delight

Many of us eat corn for its fresh, bright flavour and sweet juices. It’s also a convenient and fun finger food to eat at picnics and family barbecues. But corn also contains many essential nutrients. It is an excellent source of antioxidants; it contains folate, helpful in fighting heart disease; it is high in thiamine, […] Read more