Tuesday, March 30, 2010


How cool is this? This company called The Deli Garage Esslack, a Germany based company has just created a spray that turns your food gold or silver, and remains completely edible! This would be so fun to jazz up so deserts like cookies or cakes! I wonder how it tastes! Check it out!! I want it!


Dark chocolate is delicious and a liiiiitle bit nutritious. They say it's great to have one piece of dark chocolate a day! Lindt Excellence Dark Chocolate is the way to go. I leave a pack of it in the fridge and whenever I have a sweet craving I just break off a little piece - this is the trick of my grandparents. When it's in the fridge it is easy to break and keeps quite well. I just tried the new Sea Salt Lindt Dark Chocolate - and you should definitely give this a try, a good balance between sweet and salty! I usually just buy these packs of chocolate at Shoppers Drug Mart!

Monday, March 29, 2010


This utensil is one of my favourites in the kitchen, and any kitchen should be equipped with a "Y" shaped vegetable peeler. Not only are they great on vegetables but they work well with a variety of other foods. I use mine all the time - and I am sure you will find good uses too. They are great for peeling apples or hard fruits like that. But I especially love them to make "shavings" or "curls" of either chocolate or cheese. The chocolate shavings are great to put on top of desserts to fancy them up, they are decorative and pretty! For cheese shavings, I often use the peeler for parmesan cheese when I am adding it into a salad and want it to look extra nice, or when I just want thin shavings in my salad. It is also great for cutting slabs of any type of brick cheese! Try one out of new things and I guarantee you it will become one of your new favourite tools!

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Stir-fry's are my meal of choice at school. They are so easy to throw together and generally I can just use whatever I have in my fridge. I like to make my own curries and today I was thinking about my favourite peanut chicken from Thai Island and I decided to make a peanut stir-fry. Today's stir-fry consisted of celery, red pepper, cauliflower, carrots and pineapple, but you honestly could put whatever you like into them: mushrooms, snow peas are great, broccoli, Japanese eggplant, bok choy,  scallions etc. Here is the recipe - try it out!

Peanut Stir-Fry (serves 2)

- 2 chicken breasts
- 4 garlic cloves
- 2 tbsp fresh chopped ginger
- 1/4 cup onion (any colour will do) 
- 1 cup (or more) vegetables of choice! 
- 3 large tbsp crunchy peanut butter
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper 
- 1/2 cup of water (or chicken stock)
- 3 tbsp oil (olive or canola, doesn't matter) 
- 3 tbsp yellow curry powder (optional) 

- Cut chicken into cubes 
- Chop vegetables into bite size pieces
- In a wok, on medium heat saute garlic, ginger and onions in olive oil
- Add chicken to mixture once garlic, ginger and onions are soft
- Add curry powder and cook until chicken is cooked through
- Remove mixture from wok into a side bowl
- Add soy sauce, white wine vinegar, sesame oil, brown sugar, cayenne pepper, water and peanut butter to wok
- Wish together until the liquid looks smooth
- Turn heat to medium high and add vegetables into the wok
- Cook for around five minutes or until vegetables are tender
- Add chicken back in to reheat for 1-2 minutes
- Remove from wok and serve over jasmine rice (even without the rice it is delicious on its own)


Note: A wok is a round bottomed cooking vessel which originated in China and they are generally used for stir-frying. You can buy a WOK at any kitchen store, but we got ours at IKEA for only 8 bucks and it is perfect!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Thank You Jamie-O

I just finished watching Jamie Oliver's first episode of Jamie's Food Revolution. All I can say is WOW! He is such an incredible guy and these shows will just show you how terrible the food industry can be - espeically for kids in schools, and even cooking in homes. He cares so much and is helping families and schools as a whole revolutionize their lifestyles to help have healthier lives for their children. Please please please try and watch this show. You will be amazed. For example from the episode I just watched, classes JK-6 who ate at the school meal hall did not even have FORKS OR KNIVES to eat lunch or breakfast with!! (The kids have never even used them!!) Can you even believe that?? The cooks of the school did not even believe Jamie when he said that children use forks or knives. This entire show all I did was shake my head in shock. YOU MUST WATCH IT!


Pavlova is one of my ultimate favourite deserts to make. It is so easy, and the meringue is a real crowd pleaser. Pavlova is a meringue cake - light and fluffy and there is a longstanding debate about the origin of the cake. It was either invented in New Zealand or Australia but the name Pavlova was chosen in honor of Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova. (She toured both New Zealand and Australia in 1926)

I usually make this at Christmas as a desert when all my high-school girlfriends come over for dinner, and they love it! I made it last night for a dinner party and it was a huge success. The only thing with meringues is that they are somewhat temperamental - so don't try to make them on a rainy day because you wont end up with the stiff peaks you need. Here is the recipe - SO EASY!


- 4 egg whites
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tsp white vinegar
- 1 tbsp cornstarch or cream of tartar
- 1 pack of raspberries
- 4 kiwis
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 1 half pint whipping cream (250ml)

- Preheat oven to 250 degrees F 
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper 
- Separate egg yolks and egg whites (it is easier to do this when the eggs are cold)
- In the bowl of your electric mixer (Kitchen Aid Mixers work very well) beat the egg whites on medium - high speed until they hold soft peaks
- Slowly add in the sugar, a tablespoon at a time and continue to beat until the meringue hold stiff peaks and is somewhat glossy looing
- Make sure the meringue is smooth not gritty (if it feel gritty the sugar is not dissolved so keep beating until the meringue feels smooth)
- With a spatula fold in vinegar and cornstarch until combined
- On your parchment paper draw a large circle, and fill in with meringue (make sure the edges of the meringue are higher than the center)
- Bake for 1 hr or until golden brown

To assemble: 
- Whip the whipping cream and add in vanilla and 2tbsp sugar for flavor
- Place whipping cream a top the meringue (do this right before you are ready to serve, otherwise the meringue will be soggy)
- Sprinkle raspberries and kiwi over the top (you can really use any fruit you like)
- Serve immediately 

Friday, March 26, 2010


This mixer is something that I cannot live with out while cooking. It is a must in every kitchen! I was given one by my mamma a few years ago and I am constantly using it. They are great for making desserts, but they come with a variety of tools that let you make pasta dough, bread dough, pastries, cakes etc. I would highly recommend for any of you cooking enthusiasts out there to pick one of these up for your kitchen. You will be amazed at how often you use this! They now come in so many different colours, so you can pick one to match your kitchen. I will be using mine tonight to make Pavlova  (a meringue cake) stay tuned!!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


I know that sweet potato fries are now the most popular thing on every menu - but there are so many other ways to enjoy sweet potatoes right out of the comfort of your own home. Sweet potatoes are rated as one of Canada's Health Guide's top ten food's to eat. They are extremely delicious, low in calories and high in vitamin A. They are a root vegetable and are native to the tropical parts of South America and were discovered there over 5,000 years ago!!

Here are some of my favourite sweet potato dishes:

Roasted Sweet Potato and Onions

- 1 small purple onion
- 2 sweet potatoes
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- salt and pepper

- Preheat oven to 400 degrees
- Chop onion into lengthwise slices
- Peep and wash sweet potato and cut into either strips or rounds (try to make them the same size as the onions)
- Place on baking sheet and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper until vegetables are evenly coated
- Bake for around 15-20 minutes

This dish is great as a side with chicken, pork and any type of meat, a defeinte staple in our house!

Baked Sweet Potato

- Sweet potato (1 per person)
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp sour cream
- salt and pepper

- Preheat oven to 400 degree
- Place sweet potato on baking sheet
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the potato is tender enough for a fork to sink in
- Remove from oven
- Cut in half
- Place butter and sour cream atop the potato and finish with salt and pepper

A delicious (and healthy) alternative to a baked potato!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Churros are known as the doughnut of SPAIN but they are also popular in places such as Latin America, Portugal and Morocco. They are a fried pastry dough coated with cinnamon and sugar and dunked into warm chocolate. I was living in Spain last year and the Churrerias were one of the best parts. Churrerias were either street vendors or shops that mainly sold churros! In high school I took Spanish and often we would have a class party or days where we would bring in food. Churros were my favourite to make and dish of choice to bring in. They are so simple to make and they are a delicious dessert or even breakfast!

There are so many recipes out there, and they are all basically the same. Here is a LINK to a multitude of churros recipes. Choose whatever one you like and enjoy your churros! If you don't feel like making a skinny deep fried doughnut, you could always travel to Spain to find one!


Here is a tip for all you cookers out there. When it comes to preparing and then cooking with raw meats and vegetables there is something you should do: have two separate cutting boards. It is really not great to cut up any type of raw meet and then proceed to use the same cutting board for the rest of your preparing. I recommend getting a different colour cutting board for your meats and for your veggies. It makes it much easier to remember and super handy when you go to the drawer.

Another cutting board tip - don't cut garlic or vegetables that will stain on your wooden cutting boards. They will not only stain the wood, but things such as garlic will leave their smell. When washing a wooden cutting board make sure to only use water - no soap! (Same goes for wooden salad bowls!)

Monday, March 22, 2010


The Ivey Deck Bistro is a delicious bistro located right where I go to school in Wolfville, NS. It is such a quaint bistro, a perfect place for lunch or a light dinner.  I went there this weekend and every time I go I constantly leave extremely content. My favourite menu item is the falafel with a side Greek salad but there is nothing on the menu that will disappoint. The falafel's are made by hand, and the bistro uses locally fresh ingredients (the feta cheese in the salad is so good!). Their sandwiches are named after Canadian Universities and the sweet potato fries are a must to start with. Check out their MENU. If you live in Wolfville get on over to the Bistro and if you don't - take a trip to the East Coast. The many culinary delights alone are worth the trip!

The Ivy Deck Garden Bistro
8 Elm Avenue
Wolfville, Nova Scotia


For those of you living on a coast, especially the East Coast in Canada, you know how lucky you are to eat fresh fish and seafood whenever you like! Lobster, fish and chips, scallops, mussels are just some of my favourites! This weekend a bunch of us went to Peggy's Cove (a tourist hotspot right outside Halifax, NS). Here we indulged in fresh caught lobster with garlic butter to dip in. For those of you wanting to try out lobster I would definitley reccomend hitting up Peggy's Cove. It may not be the most romantic atmosphere but the restaurant is located right beside the ocean, atop the rocks. You have a stunning view of the ocean and lighthouse, and it sure makes the lobster experience quite fun! For those of you living in Halifax and looking for a good lobster, check out McKelvie's or Salty's!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy Green Day

While I was checking out some other blogs I came across some fun St. Patrick's Day food...the cookies are really cute! And someone took a shamrock hole-punch to a basil leave - how creative and how fun for a day like today! Enjoy your day!!

Monday, March 15, 2010


I have been going to Camerini ("Cam" as we say in our family) since we needed a highchair or booster seat to be at the table. Every Sunday for dinner the only place we would go was Camerini. This is the best Italian in the city (Toronto). Camerini is a family run, small and intimate Italian restaurant. The food is delicious and the servers (now our friends) are the nicest! You won't break the bank for a nice dinner out and you will be thoroughly satisfied with any choice on the menu. For the longest time the only thing I would ever order was a ceaser salad to start and linguine Alfredo with raspberry tartufo for dessert. However that plain (but always delicious) meal has now changed into a variety of new dishes. I can't stop trying new things - they are all SO good!

My personal favs at Cam are:
- Antipasti plate to start (great olives and marinated vegetables)
- Penne a la vodka (if you have leftovers, it is great warmed up the next day for lunch!)
- Penne with rapini (very similar to broccoli) and sausage in a garlic oil (FABULOUS!)
- Any of the veal dishes are worth trying (they also come with side vegetables and a side pasta. You will be full for sure by the end of the meal!)
- For dessert, raspberry tartufo is still and will always be my favourite!

If you love Italian you MUST give this place a chance. I promise it will become a new staple in your restaurant favourites!

Camerini Ristorante
709 Mount Pleasant Road
Toronto, Ontario
416 483 6784

Roast Beef Sammy

Here is a great sandwich idea for lunch or even for dinner with a side salad would be great (moderated from one of the sandwiches they sell at my school). This sandwich is delicious and a great meal when you have leftover meats you need to get rid of! You could even switch it up and use beef, but I like the roast beef version. You can now buy roast beef from your deli counter so you don't need to make a whole roast just for this one sandwich. Try and find really nice baguette, it makes all the difference for a delicious sandwich (I recommend ACE bakery).

Roast Beef Sandwich

- baguette bread
- 5 spinach leaves
- 1/2 tbsp horseradish (depending on if you like heat, use more or less)
- 2 tbsp sour cream
- 2 slices Swiss cheese
- 3 slices roast beef (thinly sliced)

- Cut a sandwich size piece of baguette bread and then cut in half
- In a bowl mix sour cream and horseradish
- On both sides of the bread lather horseradish mixture liberally
- Layer ingredients: roast beef, spinach, Swiss cheese 
- To melt the cheese or warm up the sandwich place in panini press for three minutes or in toaster oven 

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Do you find carrots boring ? Do you not like them cooked or cold? Here is a recipe that is sure to wow you on the carrot front. A perfect side dish for any Sunday night dinner!

Honey and Cumin Braised Carrots:


- 2 cups carrots
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp water
- 1 tsp cumin
- salt and pepper to taste

- Wash and slice the carrots (peeling optional)
- In a pot over medium-high heat, melt honey
- Add the water and cumin and bring to a boil
- Add carrots and toss to coat well
- Put the lid on the pot, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 3 minutes
- Carrots should be tender-crisp. Note: Timing will vary with the size of carrots you use
- Remove lid, turn up heat and boil briefly to reduce the liquid
- Add salt and pepper to taste

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Mother's Day - UK

Tomorrow is the UK's version of Mother's Day - Mothering Day. While snooping around on some British websites I found this present for mom's. Shoes as cookies, perfect company to an afternoon tea - a British classic. Happy Mother's Day UK!


When I was younger, whenever I was at my grandparents cottage or ski chalet every morning started with half of a grapefruit covered in sugar! My grandma would cut up the grapefruit perfectly making it so easy to scoop out! Putting the sugar on was the best part - and the squeezing out all the juice at the end. Grapefruits are a great, quick and easy breakfast. Make sure you get a grapefruit spoon - it has ridges on the sides of the spoon making it much easier to scrape out the sections!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Another Soup...

I know, another soup - but I am hooked! Tonight I made an onion based parsnip and celery soup. It was delectable. These soups I am making are so healthy and refreshing - I highly recommend giving them a whirl. The best part is - they are made out of everything I have just lying around in the fridge!

Parsnip and Celery Soup

- 3 celery stalks
- 2 parsnips
- 1 yellow onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 box of chicken stock
- 1/4 cup milk
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp butter

- Peel onion and finely dice
- Peel garlic and chop each clove in half
- Peel parsnips and cut into thin cubes
- Wash celery, the chop into small pieces

- In a pot on medium high heat melt butter and add onion and garlic
- Let onion soften until translucent
- Add celery and parsnip
- Add chicken stock
- Switch to high heat and let boil for 20 minutes
- When celery and parsnip are tender, blend the soup in a blender
- Return soup to pot and add milk
- Season with salt and pepper

(I know it doesn't look like much - but trust me it is delicious!)

- Serve hot (optional: pop a few croutons on the top for taste and decoration!)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Breakfast for Dinner

Tonight I had all my gal pals over to enjoy breakfast for dinner. Buttermilk pancakes (banana or chocolate chip or both), bacon, OJ and fruit was on the menu! Quite a successful evening!

Here is the recipe for the buttermilk pancakes! Delish - give them a try, they are SO easy to make! (Thanks to Kate for the recipe)

Yields: 15 medium sized pancakes

- 6 tsp. unsalted butter
- 6 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 4 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. salt
- 4 cups buttermilk
- 4 eggs

- Heat the oven to 200°F. Melt the butter in a small bowl in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stove and set aside to cool briefly.
- In a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt
- In a medium bowl, whisk the buttermilk and eggs
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients
- Whisk gently until the dry ingredients are almost incorporated; stop before the batter is evenly moistened
- Add the cooled melted butter and mix just until the batter is evenly moistened (there will be lumps)

- Heat a griddle or a large pan over medium heat (or set an electric griddle to 375°F)
- Lightly oil or butter the pan
- Add scoop of pancake mix to griddle
- Let cook undisturbed until bubbles rise to the surface and the edges look dry, 1 to 2 minutes
- Check the underside of each pancake to make sure it’s nicely browned; then flip
- Cook until the second side is nicely browned, about 1 minute more
- Transfer the pancakes to a baking sheet and keep warm in the oven while you repeat with the remaining batter.

Serve HOT with butter and maple syrup


I want to make these:

And these:

Poutini's House of Poutine

I was reading blogTO last night and was searching restaurants by food type and I came across the section called "Poutine." I was surprised because I didn't realize Toronto had a restaurant solely dedicated to poutine - but it does! Poutini's House of Poutine on Queen Street West. How Canadian can you get with a place full of poutine! Check out their MENU - it is too funny, but looks so yummy! They even have a brunch poutine named "The Maple Poutigly" (traditional poutine + bacon + organic maple syrup - SERIOUSLY CANADIAN)! This place calls for a late night test, I hope Poutini serves me his best!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


This restaurant in Toronto is just the most fun. Japanese restaurant with either the sushi bar or teppanyaki. Teppanyaki is where you sit around the griddle and a cook chops and prepares the food right in front of you. YAMATO is located in Yorkville in Toronto and is such a fun spot! There are about 20 seats in a horseshoe shape surrounding two griddles with two chefs! The chefs put on quite a show when cooking your food, and it is truly hilarious to sit with complete strangers and eavesdrop on their conversations. You are generally in for quite a treat! The food is amazing, make sure when you order a teppanyaki dinner you asked for fried rice instead of steamed rice. It is the best rice I have ever eaten. After the make your fried rice there is usually some crusty bits left on the grill, make sure you ask your chef to give you them - it's like a little crut left over! YAMATO has teppanyaki dinners like the normal chicken terriyaki or beef terriyaki, but they also have things like shrimps or scallops in a garlic-butter and soya sauce. The best dish though is the Imperial - a combination of sirloin and lobster. The dishes are quite large so I recommend sharing a plate with a friend or date, but ordering two orders of fried rice! Also - the lychee martini's are a great drink they serve. I definitely recommend starting with one of these! Have fun at YAMATO!

18 Bellair Street
Toronto, Ontario


I am not usually one for cartoon movies let alone a children's cartoon movie about a rat. But I have to say Disney's Ratatouille was amazing. It was all abut food, cooking and learning how to appreciate friends, family, food and love. Remy is a rat and a lover of food - he doesn't fit in with his fellow rat colony as he appreciates food waaaay to much to eat the garbage on the streets. The scenes in this film are too cute and a good chuckle. If you  have kids, watch it together, if you don't watch it anyways. It is a great flick!

Ratatouille is an actual french dish - a slow cooked stew of vegetables and absolutley delicious. Laura Calder is a host on the Food Network for her show French Food at Home. Here is her recipe for Ratatouille.

Yields 8

- 2 big eggplants
- 2 red peppers
- 2 yellow peppers
- 1/2 cup olive oil, for cooking 
- 4 small zucchini, cut into thick rounds 
- 2 onions, sliced 
- 2 cloves garlic, minced 
- 2 pepperoncini, crushed 
- 1 bay leaf 
- 1 rosemary sprig 
- 1 pinch Salt and pepper 
- 8 medium tomatoes, seeded and roughly chopped
- handful or two of chopped fresh basil

- Heat the oven to broil. Thickly slice the eggplant, and lay the rounds on cake racks which you’ve laid in the sink. Salt, very generously, and leave 30 minutes for the excess water to drain off. When they are ready, you’ll need to rinse them well under the tap and pat them dry with a towel.
- While the eggplant drains, put the red and yellow peppers in the oven and broil to blacken the skin on all sides, 20 minutes total. Remove to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let sit five minutes. The skin will now peel off easily. Peel and seed, then slice the flesh to julienne and put it in a large bowl. Turn the oven down to 450°F/230°C.
- Put some oil on a baking sheet and toss the zucchini slices in it. “Grill” in the oven, turning once, about 10 minutes. Remove, and add to the peppers. Finally, cut the rinsed and dried eggplant into large chunks, toss in oil, spread on the baking sheet, and “grill” also, about 15 minutes. As things are done, add them to the bowl.
- While the vegetables are in the oven, heat a spoonful of olive oil in a sauté pan and fry the onion until soft. Add the garlic, pepperoncino, bay leaf, and rosemary one minute. Add the tomatoes. Cook until the tomatoes are very soft and the whole mixture thickly soupy, about 15 minutes. Pour the tomato over the vegetables, toss everything. Check the seasonings. Serve at room temperature with the basil scattered over.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Homemade Squash Soup

I love meals that are just thrown together from searching through your fridge! Today I come home with no idea what to make for dinner. I found some acorn squash, some white onion and celery. What better to make then a squash soup. It turned out perfect - such a delicious soup for a chilly night. A little hint of cinnamon was the final and perfect touch. And since acorn squash have seeds I toasted them up with a lil' salt and cinnamon. Deeeeelicious!

For those of you wanting to try out the RECIPE here it is, it is SO simple!

- 3 acorn squash
- 1/2 white onion
- 3 celery stalks
- 2 tbsp butter
- salt and pepper to season
- 2 cups chicken stock

- Cut 3 acorn squash in half, remove seeds and cook in microwave for 10 minutes
- Cut one half white onion and three celery stalks
- Put onion and celery stalks (like a mirepoix but minus the carrots) in a deep pot on medium heat with 2 tbsp of butter and some salt and pepper
- Let soften for about 10 minutes, until the onions are translucent and soft
- Take the cooled squash and spoon into pot of onions and celery
- Add roughly 2 cups of chicken stock
- Add 2 tbsp of cinnamon
- Add 1 tbsp honey
- Adjust heat to medium-high heat and let come to boil, until the squash is soft and tender

With a hand held mixer, blend the ingredients together right in the pot and season with some salt and pepper! Voila ! Squash Soup! (To make a richer soup, add about 1/3 cup heavy cream)