Posts in Baked Dish
Zucchini Cornbread
zucchini cornbread - the nomadic wife - riverbend gardens



The thing about seriously good baking is this. It's more like the horizon "forever receeding" than a goal. Or as Tom would put it "the more you know, the more you know you don't know"

I inevitably become painfully aware of my shortcomings as my skills develop and then it becomes a matter of chasing the dragon so to speak.

I find myself akin to some back alley addict looking for the next high. The exception being that my particular form of high comes in the form of an expertly executed dish.

zucchini cornbread - the nomadic wife - riverbend gardens
zucchini cornbread - the nomadic wife - riverbend gardens

Whether that be Appalachian hillbilly chicken and dumplings or a single bite from a molecular pastry chef at the edge of his game makes no difference. If the dish sings to me.. it usually results in a hedonistic memory I can never shake.

My path into baking has been one of dragon chasing. Where I would eat savory and sweet baked goods crafted by other peoples talented hands and be left with a longing to recreate it in the kitchen. I would then return home with high hopes and no real plan, because I knew deep down that I can't bake. Until now.

I've equipped myself with a scale & some delicious flours. I'm starting at the bottom of the hill with the lowly but divinely delicious zucchini cornbread.

I've gone ahead and adjusted it to remove white flour & processed sugar and called it good. Perhaps my inability to follow a strict recipe is to blame for the flop of my more complex baking projects.. but this one is truly difficult to mess up.

So if you're like me, longing for a homemade treat but convinced your hands cannot produce such a thing, don't fret friend. I've got you. You've got this.





2 T coconut oil
1/4 C red onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 t pimenton paprika
1 t fresh thyme
1 C grated zuccini
3/4 C cornmeal
1 T whole wheat flour
2 t baking powder
2 t honey
1 egg, beaten
3/4 C plain yogourt
1/2 t salt



  1. Grease an 8 inch cast iron skillet with coconut oil & place it in the oven while it preheats to 400.

  2. In a medium bowl, mix together your cornmeal, flour, salt, thyme, pimenton paprika & baking powder.

  3. Beat the yogurt, honey & egg together, then incorporate it to the cornmeal mixture.

  4. Once there are no more clumps, squeeze the zucchini to remove as much water as possible then add it, the garlic and the red onion to the batter.

  5. Remove the skillet from the oven & pour in the batter.

  6. Return to the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until golden.

more zucchini recipes

The only dough you need to know: Mini Pizza Dough Buns
The only dough you need to know: Mini Pizza Dough Buns | Emilie Iggiotti Photography

Article featured in YEG Inspired Magazine | Props by Shop Hearth | PHOTOS BY EMILIE IGGIOTTI


The only dough you need to master

Pizza dough is the only “bread” I know how to make, but the versatility of what you can make with it is endless. I've made everything from garlic twist buns, bread sticks, flatbread to dinner rolls with this recipe! The only thing that ever changes is the oven temperature and the amount of time it bakes.

These mini buns are crusty on the outside & fluffy in the middle, which make them perfect for mopping up sauce or having with a charcuterie board if that's your thing.

The only dough you need to know: Mini Pizza Dough Buns | Emilie Iggiotti Photography
The only dough you need to know: Mini Pizza Dough Buns | Emilie Iggiotti Photography

Bread dough worth fighting over

Every time I make them, it brings me back to those days when my parents used to order in pizza and it would come with a little dough ball in the middle. It's only purpose was to keep the limpy cardboard box from touching the cheese and tasted exactly the same as the rest of the crust... but we fought over it like banshees. Ah. The good old days.


Pizza Dough Buns | Emilie Iggiotti Photography

36 mini buns

2C warm water
2t quick yeast
1t salt
1t sugar
1T olive oil
4C flour

10 min prep + 1h rise + 18 mins bake

  1. In a large mixing bowl add the warm water, sugar & salt then mix until they are dissolved.
  2. Sprinkle in yeast and wait until it becomes active, you will see it foam when it's ready.
  3. Add olive oil then the flour and knead with your hands (or a dough knife) until all the flour is incorporated.
  4. Cover tightly with shrink wrap and let the dough rise for an hour.
  5. Preheat your oven at 325.
  6. On a well floured surface, and with slightly oiled hands, dump the batter and begin to tear it into little chunks and rolling them into balls that will fit inside mini-muffin holes.
  7. Once your tray is full bake for 15-18 minutes or until slightly golden.
  8. Serve warm with preserves & butter or as mini dinner rolls.


On farm dinners, CSA & Roasted Carrots with Honey & Cayenne
Roasted Carrots with Honey & Cayenne | Recipe by The Nomadic Wife | Photo by Sara Jewell Photography


Photos by Sara Jewell Photography


On farm dinners

Ever get that feeling like you did something just yesterday and the stream of time just slipped on by without you truly noticing?

That’s how I feel about the dinner I hosted this summer at Riverbend Gardens. When I get out there, all I want to do is kick off my shoes and feel the earth beneath my feet. It seems to me like I was doing that just yesterday.

I’ve included a few photos from the dinner, because I also want to slip you a quick word that this may be a more frequent thing in years to come. Farm to table right there on the farm. Maybe with some workshops. Hopefully with lots of laughter. Definitely with lots of food.

Aga of Herbologie | On farm dinner at Riverbend Gardens Alberta
on farm dinner alberta by the nomadic wife | photography by sara jewell
on farm dinner alberta by the nomadic wife | sara jewell photography

Vegetarian menu for our farm dinner

The menu was an easy one, made for sharing & inspired by the season but with ingredients that can easily be found from the Riverbend farmstand even now that the city is covered in an icy slick. You could just as easily make the roasted beet salad on a bed of winter mix, the roasted carrots with honey & cayenne (see recipe below) or the potato salad from my youth. They are all recipes that transcend the seasons because at their core is veg that grows in the summer but stores incredibly well during the colder months.

These are all recipes that are still featured on our table, long after the last carrot has been plucked from the ground.

on farm dinner alberta by the nomadic wife | photography by sara jewell

Though you can no longer get carrot tops this time of year, you could easily replace those with parsley, and it would most likely be quite different but just as good.

The Nomadic Wife on farm dinner edmonton alberta
easy roasted carrots with cayenne and honey recipe by the nomadic wife

Our CSA share

*CSA stands for community supported agriculture*

While the Riverbend Gardens winter CSA season is now over (their farmer’s market stands are still going strong), looking back at this season my heart is filled with joy. I would have never guessed when I arrived in Alberta a few short years ago that I would meet this lovely farm family and the wonderful people who support and surround them. Never mind host a dinner for some of my favorite women right there on their land.

For our family, getting a CSA is about more than just knowing where our produce comes from. It’s about being part of something bigger than ourselves. It’s the being part of this larger farm family and feeling welcomed among them, that’s what gets me every time.

So, here’s to another great CSA season next year & cheers to all of you who support your local farms. May your coffee be strong and your veggies be fresh.



2 lbs carrots
Olive oil
Sea salt
Raw honey

10 MIN PREP + bake 25 mins

  1. Wash your carrots well and trim the tops off if there are any.

  2. Place on a baking tray, over parchment paper and drizzle with olive oil.

  3. Bake at 400 for 15 mins, flip your carrots and bake for another 10 mins.

  4. Pull from the oven, sprinkle with salt, a small pinch of cayenne & a drizzle of honey.

  5. Serve hot or room temperature.


Easy Hasselback Potatoes
Hasselback Potatoes | Photo by Emilie Iggiotti | The Nomadic Wife



Holiday traditions are evolving in our home

I love mash as much as the next gal, but we’ve traded in regular mash for sweet potato mash in our house during the holiday season as a means to get more color on the plate. We now make these fun little hasselbacks for those who still want a good ol’ potato side dish with their main. They’re incredibly simple to make and result in crispy outside, fluffy inside goodness.

Hasselback Potatoes | Photo by Emilie Iggiotti | The Nomadic Wife



Three to four small potatoes per person

Olive oil

Optional: cheese, fresh herbs like rosemary or flavored salts for an added twist



10 mins prep + bake 40 mins at 425°F

  1. Cut slits into the potatoes every ⅛ inch leaving the bottoms intact.

  2. Brush olive oil on & sprinkle with salt.

  3. Bake for 20 mins, then brush on more olive oil & bake for the remaining 20 mins.

  4. Serve immediately with fresh herbs or plain.



Roasted Fennel, Onion & Carrots
What can you do with fennel?



For the love of fennel

Fennel is one of those things that tends to pop up at farmers markets or show up in CSA shares quite a bit in these parts. Which is incredible for us anise-flavor lovers but maybe not so great for the other half of the population who doesn't care for it as much as we do.

Think of it as a mild licorice flavored veg, that has a crunchy texture like celery when raw but becomes sweet and caramelizes easily like onion when cooked.

Recipe for people who don't love fennel | The Nomadic Wife

got few bulbs kicking around and you realize you're just not that crazy about it?

Happens to the best of us doesn't it? We head to the farmer's market with our best intentions in our back pocket and decide to try something new or follow the advice of a well meaning friend just to realize that maybe we're not as into it as we initially thought.

This tends to happen with fennel, but don't despair. You can still use up that crunchy bulb in a beautiful way even if you're not a fan of how it tastes raw!

Simple roasted fennel and carrots recipe | The Nomadic Wife

Fennel: One fancy onion

There are two vegetables out there that I like to sub for onions in recipes and fennel is one of them (leek is the other). Once fennel gets nice and roasted (or cooks down in a mirepoix) it looses a lot of that flavor most people aren't so sure about and turns into a really lovely, sweet onion substitute.

Mix that with some sweet carrots, smoky paprika, fresh mint and a dash of cayenne and you're well on your way to a side dish no one can dispute!

Easy oven roasted fennel and carrot recipe | The Nomadic Wife
Simple roasted fennel, onion and carrots | The Nomadic Wife

The start of something good: Variations that I love

This is one of those recipes that have the potential to become something else entirely. If you make a big batch, and you have leftovers just chop them up, pop them into a soup pot & cover the vegetable stock. Once it comes to the boil, serve with a splash of apple cider vinegar (or sauerkraut) as a hot vegetable soup with some crusty bread.

You can also serve them cold with some more mint, cooked chickpeas, olive oil & lemon juice as a fresh salad bowl it really is divine!

Simple roasted vegetable side dish | The Nomadic Wife
Simple baked fennel & carrots


10-12 carrots
1 small white onion
1 fennel bulb
4 T avocado oil or olive oil
Freshly ground pepper
1/4 t cayenne
1 T smoked paprika
1-2 T apple cider vinegar
6-8 small mint leaves


Start by washing your vegetables and cutting the fennel bulb into 8 or so pieces. 
Toss with salt, pepper & half of the oil then place on a cooking sheet.
Next cut your carrots so they are all roughly the same size, this will help them roast evenly, and toss them with salt, pepper and the remaining oil.
Roast both trays at 400° for about 30 minutes tossing every so often to get a nice golden color on all sides.
In your mixing bowl, add your still warm veggies, vinegar, paprika, cayenne and torn mint leaves.
Give it a good stir, then adjust with more salt & pepper as needed.


Fennel doesn't keep really well in the fridge, so plan on using it early in the week when you receive it in your CSA or bring it home from the market. Note that you can also use the stems & fronds! You can even freeze them to add to your next vegetable stock. 



Cauliflower & Chickpea Tacos
chickpea and cauliflower tacos. The perfect plant based dinner.



1 15 oz can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 small head cauliflower, washed and cut into bite-size florets
6 6" corn tortillas


2 t chili powder
1 t ground cumin
1 t nutritional yeast, optional
1 t Himalayan salt
1 lime, juiced
1 t olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 small onion, chopped


1 C red cabbage, shredded
1 C arugula
1 small red onion chopped
1 large avocado, sliced - not shown
1 C plain yogurt
1 T apple cider vinegar
1/4 C cilantro, chopped


Prep 10 Mins + 30 mins baking

Grab a large container and mix your chickpeas, cauliflower & marinade.
Let them soak for 10-15 mins (up to overnight).
Place all of it onto a baking sheet & bake at 400 for about 30 minutes
In the meantime, cut your avocado into slices
Chop some cilantro & red onion for topping
Make a quick creamy dressing with the yogurt, apple cider vinegar & cilantro
Assemble and enjoy!

Kumpir: The Turkish Baked Potato

Anyone who knows the first thing about me knows that I love to eat like a local when I'm traveling. This dish is no exception.

I first had kumpir in Istanbul when I traveled there some years ago with a friend. I had the pleasure of being led around by a local who showed me all the amazing food spots the city had to offer. One of these said spots was a food cart, by the water.

There was this friendly man behind the cart, speaking in a tongue I couldn't comprehend in the least. We did, however, come to an understanding. I pointed to the different toppings and gesticulated to see if this one was spicy or what was in that particular one.

He tried to explain each topping (pickled cabbage, russian salad, meats, baba ganoush) and even let me taste a few before I settled on everything that looked vegetable based piled high onto the baked & mashed goodness. I was food drunk for hours after devouring what was probably the equivalent of three meals in ones sitting.. but it was wonderful.

The flavors of the pickled against the buttery mash really kept things sharp. It was like some good down home mash got a kick butt makeover. It was one heck of a meal!

I have to honestly say, this is a modest version of kumpir, with far fewer toppings but it is no less delightful or filling. I truly hope you enjoy a little taste of Istanbul when you eat it.




4-6 fist sized potatoes
2 T butter (or coconut oil)
1/2 pint mushrooms
2-3 cloves garlic


Pickled vegetables
Garlic mushrooms
Chopped fresh veggies
Nuts & seeds
Leftover lentil & beans
Baba ganoush
Hot sauce


Prick the potatoes 3-4 times, place in the oven and turn on to 400 C
While the potato bakes, quickly pan fry some mushrooms with a splash of olive oil & garlic.
Once they brown remove them from the heat.
Once the 40 minutes are over, let the potatoes cool in the oven
Then pulled them out, place in a dish & cut down the middle
Add butter and "mash" the potato right inside it's skin
Add all the toppings & chow down!

* I try to always have something protein dense on there like lentil, grilled mushrooms or nuts. Honest to goodness though, I’ve had it topped with salad + pickled veg and it was just as filling.



Baked Chili Enchiladas - Perfect recipe for chili leftovers

These enchiladas are to die for & they're a great way to get rid of those chili leftovers.

I have a knack for making really large batches of chili without quite realising that I am feeding two people (not 10) most of the time. Although freezing is a good alternative to get that chili out of the fridge without any waste, this offers a nice alternative that has you eating your chili out of a tortilla instead of a bowl.

wheat free, meat free, egg free, soy free



6 small corn tortillas
1 1/2 C chili
1 sweet potato cubed & roasted
1 C enchilada sauce
1/2 C grated mozzarella


Avocado - optional
Yoghourt - optional
Green onion chopped - optional


10 MINS PREP + 20 MINS cook

This is a great recipe to make with leftover Chili & leftover sweet potato. If you don't have those on hand, make a quick batch of chili & roast some sweet potatoes at the same time tonight so that you can make this tomorrow! <3

Take your corn tortillas, if they are a little dry moisten them with a little towel while you prep the rest.
Grab your chili & sweet potatoes from the fridge, mix together in a bowl.
Divide the mix into your tortillas. Roll each one up and set it seam down into your baking dish. 
Top with enchilada sauce & grated mozzarella. Place in the oven at 350 C for 20 mins, then broil for 1 minute to get the cheese all crispy.
Serve with your desired toppings & enjoy!



Enchilada Sauce


1/2 28 oz can of diced tomato
2 cloves garlic chopped
1/2 onion chopped
3 tbs butter
1 tbs flour
1/4 tbs cumin
2 tbs chilli powder



5 MINS PREP + 15 MINS cooking

Start with 1 tbs of butter in a hot pan.
Add your garlic & onion. Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add flour and stir.
Squish the tomatoes in a bowl until they have a more saucy look. Add to pan. 
Add cumin & chilli powder, stir and let bubble until the sauce is thick.
Set aside & keep in the fridge until friday!

The best cauliflower & quinoa crust you've ever eaten

This is an updated recipe based on my past recipe Asparagus & Garlic Quinoa Pizza. I still stand by that recipe so very much, but I wanted to take a stab at hiding some veggies in the crust.

This crust is a little less eggy and doesn't have as many steps. With everything goin' on right now (more on that later) it feels to me like every step I can remove from a recipe without damaging the outcome is a step in the right direction.

So here we are, it's September first, cauliflower is in season & cauliflower rice is all the if the can replace that starchy goodness with this veg, sounds like a good starting point for the crust. Riverbend Gardens has some lovely green cauli ready for me to pick up with my CSA share, so I figured the more colour the merrier. 

If you want to be extra sneaky about the added veg though, I suggest you try it with the white. Either way, they taste the same and the outcome shouldn't change.

Cauliflower & quinoa pizza crust like you've never had it before. Best vegetarian pizza out there, seriously.

This recipe has both eggs & dairy in it. I know, I know... but honestly, I've come to a point where 1/4 C of mozzarella isn't going to kill me, so I still stand by the idea that this is a rather healthy recipe.

I've topped it off with a bit of mozzarella & fresh tomato, but you could really load these up with whatever your heart desires!


Make 4 portions

1 ¼ C quinoa, cooked
1 ¼ C grated cauliflower
3 t. olive oil, divided
2 eggs
1 t italian seasoning
1 tsp baking powder
1 T red pepper flakes
¼ C mozzarella, shredded
¼ C parmesan


Fresh tomato
Fresh basil


10 mins prep + 25 mins baking

Cook quinoa according to package instructions, making sure to cook out as much of the water at the end.
Transfer the cooked quinoa to a large bowl and let it cool for at least 10 minutes.
Grate the cauliflower as small as you can & add it to the cooling quinoa.
Preheat oven to 400 & line a baking pan with parchment paper.
Whisk the eggs, 1 t olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes and baking powder in a bowl.
Add the cheese & egg mixture to the cooled down quinoa. Stir to combine.
Spread the quinoa dough into a ¼ inch, even layer on the parchment paper.
Bake for 18-20 minutes, edges should begin to brown.
Top with the fresh tomato & cheese and return to the oven for 5 minutes.
Let cool for 5 minutes before slicing.