The Birth of Ollie's Yummy in Your Tummy

 Ollie's Yummy in Your Tummy came to be out of two separate events in my life. My youngest son loved to cook with me. At an early age he declared he wanted to open a restaurant when he was older, called "Tyler's Yummy in Your Tummy" He never did open that restaurant but I loved the name and decided to use it for my Blog on Cooking and Recipes.

 "Ollie" replaced the name "Tyler" in the title simply because that same son suggested the nickname Ollie when my first grandchild was born. My middle name is Olive after my Grandmother, and I became Grandma Ollie to my grandchildren. And thus Ollie's Yummy in Your Tummy was born!

 This blog will be a collection of recipes - family, my own, and any others I can find in my collection. I've been cooking for almost 50 years - having started as a pre-teen. In Ollie's Yummy in Your Tummy I'll share my favourite recipes, tips and techniques with you.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Sweet Orange-Marmalade Chicken

We eat a lot of chicken. In fact about one year after we were married, my husband told me he never realized there were so many different ways to cook chicken! 

Over the years I've come up with a lot of chicken recipes, and today I'm trying another one. There's something about the taste of orange marmalade when it's mixed with other ingredients that is so amazingly yummy that I had to try it with a Barbecue Sauce to pour over chicken breasts. 

The wonderful thing about this method of cooking chicken is that you only need a few ingredients. I used 

1/2 cup of Orange Marmalade
1/2 cup Diana Sauce for Chicken and Ribs (you can use any Barbeque Sauce you like)

1 tsp. Orange peel, dried. You can use fresh grated peel if you have it
1 package (about 1 Tbsp.) of Soy Sauce
3 chicken breasts, boneless
1 tsp. Tarragon

I mixed the sauce ingredients (not the Tarragon or chicken) in a saucepan over low heat just until combined. Pour over the chicken which you placed in a small casserole dish. Add 1 tsp. Tarragon and put in the refrigerator for about 3 hours. Then cook in a 350' oven for 1 hour or until internal temperature reaches 165'

This goes great with rice and a salad. I had planned to serve mine tonight with steamed asparagus and baked potaotes with sour cream and chives but the asparagus wasn't fresh a so we went with broccoli.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Butternut Squash Pizza - Oh Yum!

Today I made Butternut Squash Pizza. I'd seen a photo of mini-pizzas using butternut squash as the base and I knew I had to try them.

Not having a recipe, I decided to cut the rounds from the non-seed end of the squash, then peel them. Next time I'll peel first, then cut!

I did mine in two steps but next time I will do them in three. By two steps I mean I put everything except the cheese on my squash rounds, then I roasted them in a 375' oven on parchment lined baking sheet for 40 minutes. Stage 2 was to add the cheeses and put back in oven until cheese melted.

UPDATE: My toppings burnt slightly doing this in two stages so next time I  roasted the squash rounds for 30 -40 minutes at 375' after I put some olive oil and sea salt on them.  I actually did that in the morning and left them until evening to finish up. Then I aded the sauce, and the toppings (but not the cheeses) and roasted for another 20 minutes. Third stage was to add the cheeses and return to oven until cheeses melted (a few minutes).

Squash rounds with sauce and basil. This is what I got from one squash

Here's my list of ingredients, but of course yours will be whatever pizza toppings you like.
Extra virgin Olive Oil to brush on butternut squash rounds
Sea salt to sprinkle on squash rounds
Pizza Sauce to brush on top of squash rounds  
Basil leaves to spread thinly on top of sauce 

Toppings are your choice. I used thinly slice zucchini, mushrooms, spanish onion, raw bacon and kolbassa sausage cut in thin rounds.  I meant to add red pepper but forgot. 

Second batch with Mozarella

For cheese I used cheddar because I didn't have any mozzarella, and I also added one chunk of feta cheese. Next time I want to use mozzrella and add a bit of goat cheese instead of feta, although the feta was good.
 You can see that some of the outer edges got a bit crispy but boy oh boy was this good! My husband loved them. You can pick them up in your fingers or use a fork and spoon. It's your choice! Think how much fun it would be to make these for your family on a Friday night while you watch movies.

Good times!

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Roasted Balsamic Chicken with Vegetables

This meal is so yummy and yes, so easy to make! I tweaked the original recipe and created my own version. 

We love it for its simplicity, but it is delicious and as you can see, very pretty to serve.

Next time I plan to make rice to serve with it. 

  • 1 package of chicken thighs (I used 8 thighs)
  • 1 -2 sweet bell peppers. I used 1 yellow and that was enough for us, but it's a personal choice
  • 1 red onion, cut in quarters or smaller
  • 1 bunch of asparagus (I used 12 spears, ends broken off and cut in half)
  • 1 - 2 carrots, julienned, about 3 inches long
  • 1 package of mushrooms (1/2 - 1 cup) Next time I'm using more
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 leaves Fresh Sage, chopped or 3 small leaves dried, crumbled
  • 1 tsp. Fresh Oregano
  • 1 Tbsp. Fresh Rosemary 
  • 2 Tbsp. Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. Pepper
  • Spray Oil for baking trays
Directions: Preheat oven to 425'. Spray 2 baking trays with oil. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Put in fridge for 30 to 60 minutes to marinade. Roast in oven about 15 to 20 minutes until nicely browned and vegetables are tender. Check temperature of thighs with meat thermometer to be sure they have reached 165' minimum temperature.

The vegetables. I ended up not using the red pepper. Next time I will use more mushrooms. 

The spices and other ingredients. Use fresh herbs if possible. I had to use my dried sage leaves as I don't have any fresh growing right now.

Vegetables chopped and in bowl ready for the thighs and marinade

Everything in the marinade, ready to go in the fridge for 30 to 60 minutes

Ingredients spread out on two baking sheets that have been sprayed with oil. The chicken is separated from the vegetables, and the vegetables are spread out to form one layer.

Ready to eat! This is only half of what I cooked. The rest is in the fridge for next day's meal.

Note: Original recipe on

Monday, January 4, 2016

Avacado Chickpea and Feta Cheese Salad

I love Avacado, Chick peas and Feta cheese!  

My husband detests Avacado with Chick peas a close second so I had to figure out how much of each ingredient to use for just one person (me!)

Basically I just started by putting in as many chickpeas as I thought I would like, then I added an equal amount of feta cheese. Then one avacado did the trick! For green onion, just put in as much as you think you would like! 

I've given ingredient portions as best I could for those who like to follow a recipe but honestly, just play with it! However please don't leave out or substitute one of the key ingredients. 

I was horrified to see comments on the original recipe such as "I hate avacado, I'll just leave that out" and "Ugh no crunchy chickpeas and I don't like feta so what else can I use instead?" Ummm okay you don't have this salad anymore, you've got chickpeas and feta or avacado all by its lonesome. 

It's kind of all about the contrasts between the soft avacado, the slightly crunchy chickpeas and the salty feta cheese! Okay off my soapbox - here's the recipe.

  • 1/3 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 avocados, diced
  • 1Tbsp. cup chopped fresh parsley (or fresh Cilantro)
  • 1/2 - 1 green onion,  sliced
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese
  • 1 tsp. fresh lime juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl. 
  2. Using 2 large spoons, stir gently to combine, making sure not to mash the avocadoes and feta.
  3. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Carmelized Onions the Easy Way

Who doesn't love Carmelized Onions? You can use them on top of meatloaf. You can make French Onion Soup with them. 

There are many ways to enjoy Carmelized Onions. But I hate standing at the stove for hours, making sure they don't burn but have reached that yummy sweetness. 

So I use the Slow Cooker method. It is so easy and the result is amazing. Here's how to do it.

I like to do a whole bag of onions so that's about 10 onions. 

You also need 6 Tbsp. of melted butter and 1 tsp of salt (I like to use Sea Salt)

Peel the onions and slice them into thin pieces. If the onion is large cut it in half first then slice. 

Put the sliced onions in your slow cooker. 

Add 1 tsp salt (I use Sea Salt) and 6 Tbsp melted butter. 

Mix well.

Turn your Slow Cooker to LOW and let it go for 8 to 10 hours. Check the onions every so often and give them a stir. 

French Onion Soup with Carmelized Onions

When they are done (nicely browned and with juice) you can freeze them in small quantities for later use or start cooking with them right away. I like to freeze them with a bit of juice in each container but some people like to freeze the juice separately.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Beef Carbonnade in Beer and Mushroom Sauce

Yesterday I decided to make something different from our usual dinner fare. I found a recipe for Creamy Beef Carbonnade and decided to try it. As usual I made several changes, the main one being that I added a Creamy Mushroom Sauce. Hubs and I loved my version and it will definitely be added to my Monthly Rotations. The amounts below made enough for 4 to 6 servings.

1 1/2 lb (750 g) sirloin tip cut into bite size pieces
Salt and pepper, to taste. I used Fleur de Sel , about 3/4 tsp.
3 tbsp (45 mL) or more butter
1/3 cup (80 mL or 45 grams) pancetta, finely diced
8 shallots, peeled and halved OR 2 green onions plus 1 tsp dried shallots
3 tbsp (45 mL) maple syrup
1 tbsp (15 mL) cider vinegar
1 12-oz (341-mL) dark Belgium beer
1 cup (250 mL) beef stock
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 bay leaves
4 leaves sage
½ tsp. marjoram or if fresh – 3 stalks
1 tsp (5 mL) Worcestershire sauce 
2 cups Bow Tie pasta uncooked 

Fleur de Sel and Dried Shallots (because I can't get fresh)
Mushroom Sauce:
4 Crimini mushrooms, 6 mini-bella mushrooms, 8 white mushrooms, washed and cut into quarters (cut the mini-bella in halves)
¼ cup flour
¼ cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup (125 mL) 35% cream


In a sauté pan, brown half the beef cubes in the butter over medium-high heat. Set aside in a bowl and repeat with the rest of the meat. Add salt and pepper. Set aside in the bowl. 

In the same pot, brown the pancetta, green onions and shallots for a few minutes over medium heat, adding butter if necessary.

Deglaze with maple syrup and vinegar. Add the beer, stock, garlic, bay leaves, sage and Worcestershire sauce.
Return the beef cubes to the pot and bring to heat. Add mixture to slow cooker or casserole dish, depending on how you plan to cook it.

Oven Method:
Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C). Roast in the oven for 2 hours or more, until the meat is tender. Using a slotted spoon, remove the beef cubes and set them aside in a bowl.
Slow Cooker Method:
Cook in slow cooker on LOW for 4 hours. Using a slotted spoon, remove the beef cubes and set them aside in a bowl.
Make the mushroom sauce:
Saute the chunked mushrooms in hot butter or margarine until slightly tender but not cooked completely. Add more marjoram (1/4 tsp), salt and pepper. 

Make a roux with butter or margarine and equal amount of flour. Slowly add about 3 cups of the cooking juices and stir until they thicken slightly. Add the cream and reduce to the desired consistency. Add the mushrooms. If the sauce is too runny you can use Veloutine to thicken it. Veloutine comes in dark or white, depending on what kind of sauce you are making. 

Turn off the heat, add the beef cubes to the sauce and bring to heat. Cook the pasta in boiling salted water for 8-10 minutes then drain.
Serve the Carbonnade with Bow Tie pasta and roasted root vegetables (carrots, parsnips and butternut squash)

Original Recipe at

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Easy-Peasy Lemon Chicken

Many of you know how much I love chicken. I'm constantly amazed at how many different ways there are to cook this versatile meat.

Tonight I wanted to use up some frozen chicken thighs so I grabbed a recipe I saved to Evernote months ago, tweaked it a bit and made this yummy dish. 

Here's what you need:

6 chicken boneless thighs or 4 boneless breasts
1 lemon sliced into rounds
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
1 tsp of fresh marjoram, chopped
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 tsp Fleur de Sel or Kosher Salt
1/4 tsp pepper (or more to taste)

Slice lemons, chop garlic
What to do:

Lightly oil the bottom of a small casserole dish. Place lemon slices on bottom of dish, then 2 sprigs of Rosemary. Add 1 of the sliced garlic cloves. 

Rinse the chicken then place on top of the lemon and Rosemary. If using boneless thighs fold them over so they are not thin. 

Place 1 sprig of Rosemary on top of the chicken, add the majoram and the rest of the garlic then sprinkle the salt and pepper over top. Drizzle the olive oil over all the chicken pieces. 

Cover and bake in pre-heated 350' oven for approximately 30-40 minutes, depending on whether you used thighs or breasts. 
Lay lemon slices, rosemary and 1//2 the garlic in the casserole dish

Chicken thighs, folded, go on top

Add more Rosemary and the rest of the garlic

Time for olive oil, marjoram, pepper and salt. I used Fleur de Sel but you can use Kosher Salt if you wish

Ready for the oven

Serve with a salad and Carrots for a yummy easy-to-make supper!