Archive for Recipes Posts

published in Change, Christmas, Food, Gratitude, Inspiration, Recipes by Maryanne | December 23, 2014 | 4 Comments

What Does Your Christmas Eve Look Like?


mouse x-mas card by Mellie

Christmas card created by Melanie Pope

I love hearing how people spend Christmas Eve.

My brother Doug and his family love preparing, and then eating, the most delicious gourmet appetizers. Then, after the evening feed, they all watch The Christmas Carol. I like talking to him on Christmas Day to hear the delectable details on what they ate the night before! Spending Christmas Eve at their place one year is on my bucket list 🙂

In years past, my Christmas Eve has been spent madly wrapping presents while watching It’s a Wonderful Life, The Sound of Music and The Wizard of Oz on TV – all at the same time because I’d flip back and forth between the channels. I’ve never actually watched any of those movies straight through from start to finish, so this year I am going to sit down and watch just It’s A Wonderful Life in it’s entirety.

Christmas Eve was usually spent with my Mom and she LOVED when I would make her tuna casserole for dinner – served on china, of course. A few years ago, I told her that as much as I, too, love that casserole (it has potato chips in it – very ’60s), the time had come to create a new tradition. So instead, I made the world’s best chicken wings (I’m not kidding). See below for recipe.

Last year, however, I think I made my Mom her much-loved tuna casserole for old times’ sake – and I’m sure glad I did because it turned out to be her last Christmas!

But this year, I’m back to making wings for Christmas Eve dinner. I first tried these wings in 2005, when my Mom, my niece Kim and I went to Churchill, Manitoba to see the polar bears. We stayed at the Webber’s Wilderness Lodge and the two ladies who cooked for everyone – Helen Webber and Marie Woolsey – were outstanding cooks. So here’s their chicken wing recipe…and they DO disappear fast!

Jeanne’s Magic Disappearing Chicken Wings

(Recipe is from Blueberries & Polar Bears; Webber’s Northern Lodges Our Most Requested Recipes by Helen Webber and Marie Woolsey)

3 lbs chicken wings

1  cup flour

1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper

3 eggs, beaten

Tangy Sauce:

3 tbsp. soy sauce

3 tbsp. water

3/4 cup white sugar

1/2 cup vinegar

1/2 tsp salt


1. Mix flour with salt & pepper in small, shallow pan.

2. Dip wings in beaten egg, then roll in flour mixture.

3. Place wings on a well-oiled baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees F for 1/2 hour, or until well browned.

4. Remove the wings to a casserole or roaster.

5. Combine all sauce ingredients and pour evenly over wings.

6. Bake UNCOVERED, at 350 degrees F for 1 hour. Stir once during baking.

Serves 18-20 as a teaser or 8 for dinner.

Serving suggestion: At home we serve these as a meal with rice. This also makes a great dish to take to a potluck supper. These wings are best when the sauce thickens and becomes sticky. Make lots – they do a disappearing act!


The other thing I like to do on Christmas Eve is go to a late afternoon candlelight carol service. There is the cutest little Anglican church right on the water near Sidney that has a real cozy and warm feel. And the no-parking sign cracks me up. It reads: Thou Shalt Not Park.

When you have a moment (hah!), I’d love to hear your favourite Christmas Eve tradition/s.

In the meantime, have a wonderful Christmas!

Links to related blogs:


Celebrating What Is At Christmas

The Christmas the Wheels Came Off

Books With Bite

Love This Christmas Present!

Gifts That Give


When In Doubt Bake

The Tim Tam Slam

Maryanne Pope is the CEO of Pink Gazelle Productions and Chair of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund. She is the author of A Widow’s Awakening and the executive producer of the documentary, Whatever Floats Your Boat…Perspectives on Motherhood. If you would like to receive her weekly blog, please sign up here.

published in Eating, Food, Inspiration, Life Balance, Recipes by Maryanne | September 3, 2014 | 4 Comments

When in Doubt, Bake


Apple Pie

 “To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.”

– Henry David Thoreau

Well, September is certainly upon us. I could practically feel the collective shift in energy yesterday as people left the (hopefully) lazy days of summer and returned back to the structure and (hopefully not) stress of work and/or school.

As such, I shall keep this blog short & sweet…literally 🙂

In honour of my dear friend, Heather, whose birthday it is today, I would like to share with you an apple pie recipe she shared with me years ago.

applescotch pie recipe

As you can see by the butterscotch stains, this is a favourite of mine. In fact, baking (and eating and sometimes even sharing) this pie has become an annual September ritual for me – especially since I now have very happy apple trees in my backyard!

close up of apples

Here’s the recipe for Applescotch Pie (by Kathleen Walsh):

5 cups sliced apples

1 cup brown sugar

¼ cup water

1 tbsp lemon juice

Combine above in big pot and cook until tender (10–20 min)

Then add the following to the pot, to thicken:

¼ cup flour

2 tbsp sugar

Once thickened, then add:

1 tsp vanilla

¾ tsp salt

3 tbsp butter

Pour into pie shell (lattice-top is best) and bake at 425°C for 40-45 minutes. Enjoy!

Maryanne Pope is the author of A Widow’s Awakening and the upcoming book, Barrier Removed; A Tough Love Guide to Achieving Your Dreams. Maryanne also writes screenplays and play scripts, including the play, Saviour. She is the CEO of Pink Gazelle Productions and the Chair of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund.


published in Eating, Food, Life Balance, Recipes by Maryanne | February 10, 2012 | 7 Comments


Maryanne doing Tim Tam Slam

Updated Feb 16th, 2015


The Tim Tam Slam


Didn’t get enough chocolate on Valentine’s Day?

I can help!

Fun for the whole family, the Tim Tam Slam is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser. My friend, Ann, was the first to teach me the fine art of The Slam, which I will share with you now.

However, please note: proper technique is essential. If you don’t time the cookie-placement-on-the-tongue correctly, things can get very messy. My niece, Melly, learned this the hard way. And Tim Tams are not cookies you want to waste.

First off, you will need to buy a package of Tim Tams.  Here’s what the package looks like:

Then, here’s how to do the Tim Tam Slam:

1. Make a cup of tea (Earl Grey is best) or hot chocolate

2. Open package of Tim Tam Cookies (Double Chocolate are best, Caramel a close second)

3. Bite off the very end of cookie. Bite off other end of cookie.

4. Using the Tim Tam as a straw, sip a bit of tea or hot chocolate into cookie.

5. Immediately place the cookie on your tongue (closing your mouth is a good idea) and then savour the melting chocolate.

The experience should be like…warm chocolate lava gently flowing from a volcano.

If you dare give it a try, do send us your photos of The Tim Tam Slam in action…and we’ll post ’em on the PGP homepage.

Here’s a shot of my friend, Terri, mid-Slam:

Maryanne Pope is the author of A Widow’s Awakening and the playwright of Saviour. She is the CEO of Pink Gazelle Productions and the Chair of theJohn Petropoulos Memorial Fund. If you would like to receive Maryanne’s weekly blog, please sign up here.