Thursday, June 28, 2012


Happy Canada Day Weekend! A weekend that is sure to be filled with red & white, summer sun, cottage docks and a whole lot of love for this nation.

What better way than to celebrate with friends, family and of course food! I have found a few "food" ideas that I think are perfect for jazzing up your Canada Day party celebrations. Whether you are hosting this weekend, or you are an invitee looking for a hostess gift, any of these three ideas are sure to be the star of the party.

1. Watermelon Maple Leaf: I think this is just the one of the best Canada Day ideas I have ever seen. Watermelon is the perfect choice, refreshing on a hot summer day and loved by all. You can't go wrong with this one!

To assemble: cut your watermelon into square or rectangle slabs (as thick as you would like). Using a maple leaf cookie cuter, cut out as many as you will need. Insert a popsicle stick and refrigerate until party time.

2. Strawberry Shortcake on a skewer: what food has a better red & white combo than the classic strawberry shortcake. Instead of making one big cake, try making skewers. They are perfect for outdoor entertaining, and can be eaten with one hand. Fun for a crowd and a great dessert to get the kids to help make.

To assemble: cut out squares or circles of already cooked shortcake or biscuits. Using a wooden skewer, assemble by alternating layers between cake, whipping cream and washed & sliced strawberries.

3. Canada Day Jello Shooters: now this could be straight jello for the kids, or a little boozy for the adults. These are great to have during the day or at night. Perfect for lunch or dinner, you can't go wrong with these mini "treats."

To assemble: repare jello as per the instructions (including the alcohol if you are making them for the late night crowd). Pour jello into shooter moulds and refrigerate. Finish with some whipped cream and a strawberry or raspberry or cherry for that matter on the top!

photo credit: interest

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Since it has been a busy week with the "passed appetizers," I thought I would share another favourite - this time with the recipe!

This is a great appetizer for entertaining at home. Easy to assemble and something that can be done ahead of time, perfect for the busy host!

With Ontario asparagus season in full force, this is the perfect time to take advantage of our beautifully and locally grown asparagus. Skinny and delicious, you can't go wrong with these babies.

Wrapped in the prosciutto gives the asparagus a salty bite, and once they are baked - they crisp up slightly which gives them a perfect crunch. Finish them with a four ingredient parmesan cream and you are all set to go! I served mine on a great wooden board that I bought at Indigo. Perfect to set down on a table in front of your guests or to use as a serving vessel while passing around. The options are endless!

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus
Makes 21 pieces

- 21 pieces of asparagus
- 7 pieces of prosciutto (cut vertically into thirds)
- salt & pepper
- 1/4 cup ground parmesan
- 3/4 cup 35% cream

1. Snap the ends off of your asparagus and wash thoroughly. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Take your pieces of prosciutto and cut into thirds, vertically. If you would like more prosciutto on each piece only cut into half, I think thirds is the perfect amount for the skinny Ontario asparagus, but if it's thicker, in half might be better.
3. Wrap the prosciutto around the asparagus, starting at the top and wrapping around to the bottom. (You don't need to season or oil these when roasting them. There is enough salt and oil which will be released from the cooking of the prosciutto)
4. In a small pot over medium high heat, whisk together the parmesan, cream, salt and pepper. Allow to come to a boil and then quickly reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook until the cream sauce has reduced, reaching a thicker stage.
5. Cook the asparagus for 7-10 minutes, until the asparagus are fork tender and the prosciutto has crisped up.
6. Serve either right out of the oven warm, or at room temperature and garnish with the parmesan cream (or serve it on the side to dip the asparagus in)
7. Enjoy!

Monday, June 25, 2012


Tonight I had the absolute pleasure of catering a pre prom party for a group of grade 12 grads! Congrats to them!

One of my favourite appetizers these days is my take on a dish I first had at FARM restaurant in Calgary a few summers ago. Smashed peas seasoned with mint topped with a lemon whipped ricotta. Incredibly fresh and perfect for the summer flavours. At FARM, we were served this dish as an appetizer, with crostini and the peas & ricotta separated in two bowls.

Tonight I took the flavour combo ideas and made them into a fresh and delicious appetizer. Mini crostini bites on pain de mie was the route I opted for. Pain de mie has a sweeter flavour than most baguettes, and also comes in the mini size which was perfect for this one bite event. Garnished with a pea tendril (or pea shoot), it was the perfect size and bite for an event like this. Light, refreshing, and oozing summer flavours, I was very happy with the end result!


Peameal bacon, also known as Canadian bacon everywhere outside of Canada is a staple food, that has been adored for years. Peameal bacon is different than the bacon most people are used to.

The meat part of it is a boneless pork loin which is then rolled in yellow cornmeal and slowly cured. There is less fat in peameal bacon, making them more lean, which also ensures a more uniform product. Here is a fun fact, before the start of the world wars, peameal bacon was actually first rolled in dried and ground yellow peas - not cornmeal! Peameal bacon sandwiches are a staple at the St Lawrence Market, and turning into quite the popular sandwich option!

Last night I was at a Canadian themed birthday party, for a friend from the U S of A, celebrating his birthday for the first time in Canada. The party was all Canadian, with tons of flag memorabilia and other Canadian goodies such as Keith's, Canadian, maple syrup, hockey jerseys, Tim Hortons name it. The snack of the night, which in my opinion was a great highlight were the peameal bacon sammys served on a mini sesame bun and served with your choice of grainy mustard or ketchup. They were a total success!

For a different take on bacon, try using peameal bacon, and if you are looking for a sandwich stuffed to the brim with this delectable pork loin, check out Toronto's historic St. Lawrence Market.

Thursday, June 21, 2012


With this heat wave on the go, and summer finally here, it can only mean one thing: the start of the outdoor parties!

I love being outside during the summer, and its the perfect time to glam up your backyard or outdoor space and have a party. There are so many ways to spice up your plain old backyard, so I thought I would share the top photos I found that capture my favourite decorating ideas for a summer party.

1. THE BEER (& BAR) STATION: the most important part of an outdoor party, is an easy access, self serve bar. I love the idea of using an old bucket, like the tin ones pictured below. Fill it up with ice, make a menu, attach an opener and you are ready to go. If you are feeling even more generous, pre cut some lemon and limes to make your guests beer just that much better.

Different Beer Bucket Ideas

2. THE DRINKS STATION: My new summer obsession are the lemonade type dispensers (1st picture below). Perfect to fill up with different drinks, like lemonade, flavoured water, iced tea...the options are endless. I love how cute they are, and to me have such a retro feel. 

The "Lemonade" Stand

Flavoured Water Holders

3. THE LIGHTING: Nothing is more beautiful than being outside when it is perfectly lit by the time dusk falls around. Candles, lights, decorations, all of these "little" things add to making your party perfect. Try something different and light up your outdoor space! When I was younger and spending my summers on the lake, my mom would let us host one of the summer parties. BUT, she insisted every time that we put up our PATIO LANTERNS. It sort of became our thing, and to this day, every time we have a party at the cottage, we bust out our patio lanterns!

Patio Lanterns

Tea Lights & Brown Paper Bag Lanterns (great for lining an entrance way)


For a sit down dinner party I catered last night, the idea was to use fresh Ontario summer produce.

For dessert, what speaks more highly of Ontario products then fruit?! I decided to do a simple strawberry & peach crumble, with my crystallized ginger ice cream. I topped them with some dried strawberries that I found at Summerhill Market. They were so good, and tasted like a fruit rollup, but not fake!

Crumbles are a great dessert. They are easy, fast, and you can use just about any fruit or fruit combination to go in them. The main thing to know about crumbles: you need fruit and an oat topping, with a scoop of cold ice cream and you are good to go!

Strawberry Peach Crumble:
Serves 6 individual or in a whole pan

- 1 quart of strawberries quartered
- 3-4 peaches sliced
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 1/3 cup sugar

Topping (adapted from Martha Stewart)
- 1 cup old fashioned oats
- 1/2 cup of butter, cold
- 1/2 cup of flour
- 1/4 cup of brown sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar

- Preheat oven to 375 degrees
- In a bowl, mix together flour, brown sugar, salt and 2 tbsp granulated sugar.
- Add in cut pieces of butter, crumbling the butter and flour together until you have pea size pieces of butter left. Add in the oats, toss together and squeeze mixture until it begins to stick together.
- To prepare the fruit, wash and cut into quarters and slices. Mix with vanilla, sugar and cornstarch.
- Fill the ramekins with the fruit mixture, cover with the crumble topping and bake for 30-40 minutes (or until you can see the fruit juices bubbling out of the sides)
- Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


For a dinner party I am catering today, the dessert I decided to make is all about Ontario's fruits.

It's now summer, which means the best of the fruits are starting to come out. I am doing a strawberry-rhubarb crumble, and for a little twist from the classic vanilla ice cream, I decided to make a silky ginger ice cream to go on top.

This ice cream recipe is super simple, and literally takes 15 minutes to churn in an ice cream machine. I have the kitchen aid one, and it's a peach, love it!

To really get the full ginger flavour, I first steeped fresh ginger into the milk and cream mixture for about 20 minutes. And right before churning the ice cream, I added in a handful of diced crystallized ginger, for flavour and for appearance sake.

Emma's Ginger Ice Cream

- 500ml 35% cream
- 500ml whole milk
- 10 egg yolks
- 200g sugar
- 1 knob of fresh ginger cut into pieces
- 8 pieces of crystallized ginger diced

1. In a sauce pan over med-low heat, infuse the milk & cream with the fresh ginger. Let steep about 20 minutes.
2. Once the ginger flavour is infused, remove the cut up ginger pieces, add in the sugar and return to the heat. Allow sugar to dissolve.
3. Once the mixture has come to a boil, it is time to add in the eggs. Work fast! You do not want the custard to burn or the eggs to scramble. In order to prevent this you need to temper the eggs. Add a tbsp or two of the hot mixture into the eggs and beat. Then slowly add the egg mixture in a constant flowing stream to the pot of milk&cream, whisking the whole time.
4. Continue to whisk the mixture until an almost custard like consistency has formed.
5. Transfer to a bowl, place a piece of plastic wrap on the top to avoid a skin from forming and let chill in the fridge over night.
6. Day Two: churn ice cream as per your ice cream makers directions
7. Enjoy!

Monday, June 18, 2012


Quinoa...what is quinoa and how the heck do you say it? I get asked this all the time!

"Keen-wah" (quinoa) originated in the Andean region of Ecuador, Bolivia and Chile. It is a grain-like crop that is grown for its edible seeds. Quinoa has a very high protein content (18%) and a complete source of protein. It is a good source of dietary fibre and high in iron.

I really enjoy quinoa, I even ate it for breakfast the other day! It makes for a great base to any type of salad flavourings (like Greek!), and now even a breakfast vehicle for flavour.

This recipe I want to share was made for me by my friend Katie one night when she came for dinner. I absolutely loved it, and now offer it as a salad choice to my lunch clients.

Warm Quinoa Salad with Roasted Butternut Squash
Serves 4 as a side

- 1 small butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- Olive oil
- Salt & Pepper
- 1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
- 1 cup of water
- 6 leaves fresh sage, chiffonade or left whole
- 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
- 1/2 orange, juiced
- 2 tbsp cumin

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. On a roasting sheet, place the butternut squash and coat with olive oil, salt, pepper, cumin and sage leaves. Roast for 30 minutes, until tender.
3. In a saucepan, bring 1 cup of water and 1/2 cup of quinoa to a boil. Add in the garlic. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook until the liquid is absorbed. About 12-15 minutes.
4. Once quinoa is cooked, mix with the butternut squash, add in the orange juice, adjust seasoning and serve warm.

Thursday, June 14, 2012


Flan, aka creme caramel, was an instant favourite of mine, when I took my first trip to Spain in grade nine. I was on the trip with my uncle and aunt, and at every lunchtime meal, the menu del did (menu of the day) would come with a dessert. I would always order flan! They still tease me about it to this day, but I still love it just as much and order it whenever I get the chance.

Flan is exactly like the French version called creme caramel. The bottom layer (which is then inverted to the top layer, which is why the top is darker than the bottom) of flan is a rich caramel, covered then by a creamy and luxurious set custard. This dessert is silky and smooth, rich, but light enough that you don't feel overwhelmed by it.

For a dinner party I catered last night, I served the flan with a few fresh raspberries sprinkled on top for colour and a bright taste for the dish.

Serves 6 - 8

- 6 egg yolks
- 1 whole egg
- 1 1/2 cup evaporated milk
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup 35% cream
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup sugar + 2 tbsp water (for the caramel)

- Preheat oven to 350
- To make the caramel sauce, add 1 cup sugar and 2tbsp water to a pot on medium heat. Let the sugar begin to dissolve, stirring occasionally until completely dissolved into a liquid form. The caramel will be amber in colour. Be patient! It takes a few minutes!
- In a bowl mix the egg yolks, egg, evaporated milk, cream, milk, sugar and vanilla.
- Once the caramel has finished cooking, coat the bottom of an 8 or 9 inch pie pan with all of the caramel
- Then take your egg mixture, and strain the liquid on top of the caramel layer.
- Bake in a water bath (place pan in a roasting pan, with water halfway up the sides of the baking dish) and cook for around 45-50 minutes or until the custard is set
- Allow to cool in the fridge for at least 4 hours.
- To un-mold, run your knife along the edge of the flan. Place a plate of top and flip upside down. (Do this over a sink)
- Voila, a beautiful Spanish treat!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012


In my previous breakfast posts there have been pictures about my quiche, so I thought I would share the recipe with you. My new favourite breakfast item, but would also be great for a light dinner with a simple green salad using some market greens!

Asparagus, Leek & Gruyere Quiche (Adapted from Martha Stewart)

- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 leek (white and light green parts), halved and sliced thinly
- 1 bunch of asparagus, ends removed and cut up
- 5 eggs
- 1/2 cup 35% cream
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 3/4 cup shredded Gruyere cheese (could always substitute for Swiss or Emmental cheese)
- 1 9-inch pie crust (store bought or homemade)
- Salt & pepper

- Preheat the oven to 350.
- I like to pre bake my pie crusts a bit when I am making quiche, I find it keeps the bottom nice and crispy. I usually pre bake them (held down by pie weights) for about 10-12 minutes.
- In a pan heat the butter and add in the leek and asparagus. Cook over medium heat until tender, about 6-8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Leek & Asparagus Mixture

- In a bowl whisk together the eggs, cream, salt, pepper and nutmeg. 
- Once the crust has cooled, sprinkle the bottom with cheese and then layer the asparagus and then finish off with the rest of the cheese. 

- Pour egg mixture on top.
- Bake until the centre of the quiche is set. About 35 minutes.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


This weekend I was staying with a friend in Stratford while attending the Stratford Chef School Long Table Dinner. I wanted to bring something edible as a gift, so I decided to do one of my "breakfast bags." (Available upon request by Emma's Eatery).

The Breakfast Bag:

A big part of the food industry is presentation. Making the food look inviting & delicious helps to "sell" the product. I love packing food in fun ways, and in keeping with my logo theme, I tend to use mason jars, raffia ribbon, brown paper bags etc.

Here are a few ideas of how to package foods as gifts! Don't forget, breakfast, lunch & dinner bags can be purchased whenever from Emma's Eatery!

The granola accompaniments: honey & greek natural yoghurt

The homemade granola & fresh blueberries

The quiche: asparagus, leek & gruyere

Monday, June 11, 2012


June 7th was the opening of my former chef's new restaurant, called FARMHOUSE tavern, located in the Junction. I wanted to be there for opening night to try out, what proved to be a wonderful menu. Local, fresh, simple & elegant, FARMHOUSE tavern did not disappoint!

Their mantra: Serving farmhouse hospitality. Rooted in the charming influences of the rural Ontario farmhouse. A little bit country / a lot rock & roll. Cooking a blackboard menu of farm driven food. Pouring Ontario craft brews & VQA juice.

We arrived at FT in some weird weather, a few rainy showers despite the shining sun, but, the place was already packed at 7:30! Good thing I had made a reservation, as we were seated at the last table.

A new local spot, after talking to a few "neighbours," you could tell patrons were eager to have a restaurant like this open in the heart of the neighbourhood. The restaurant is divided into the "tavern" area and the restaurant seating, with an open kitchen, allowing you to see the chefs at work! The tavern area is cozy and warm, with old photos, taverna memorabilia and a old licence plate runner around the bar. The "Juice" lists as they call it boast local wines & brews. Excellent choices.

I started off the with vichyssoise, one of my all time favourite soups. A rich and creamy combination of potatoes & leek, this soup was pure luxury. Topped with some spicy sausage and herb oil, the accompaniments were perfectly suited to the already smooth soup. Served on old china, the plate as it was being put down equaled beauty.

For our mains I ordered the steak & fries, and my boyfriend the burger, with a FARMHOUSE tavern sauce. The steak & fries was excellent, served with a bistro gravy and a compound butter on top of the steak. The butter was orange in colour, with hints of citrus flavours, melting quickly over the perfectly cooked medium-rare flatiron steak. The burger was a combination of ground meats, which just oozed juices and sauce all over the best of bistro style fries. (As per the servers recommendation!) The burger was truly a hit, with a homemade sauce topping it all off.

I know FARMHOUSE tavern will be a great success! Night one and the place was packed, with a lineup from the time I arrived to the time I left. Located at 1627 Dupont, making it convenient for many to just zip across Dupont, I will be back in no time! Love the all Ontario idea & the perfect blend of, as they say, country & rock and roll.

Congrats Chef & to the FARMHOUSE tavern team!

1627 Dupont St. 
Thursday - Sunday Dinner @ 6pm
Saturday & Sunday Brunch @ 11 -3pm
For reservations text: 416-561-9114

Friday, June 8, 2012


I love parfaits. Fresh fruit, creamy goodness & a little crunch. How can you go wrong?

I am going to share with you a quick & easy parfait recipe. Perfect for a dessert during the busy week or if you are a in a pinch. This is great for the non-baker! I served mine in short mason jars, I think they are very cute & rustic, and they also have a lid which makes them easy to transport.

Cherry Parfait

Ingredients: serves 2
- 12 cherries (you can substitute for whatever fruit you would like)
- 1 cup greek natural yoghurt
- 1/4 cup cream cheese
- 1 tsp vanilla
- dark chocolate shavings
- 4 graham crackers, crumbled

- In a bowl wish together the cream cheese, yoghurt & vanilla - until smooth and creamy
- Pit the cherries and cut in half
- For the dark chocolate shavings - I took a cube of dark chocolate and using my knife, I pulled it across the chocolate which creates a shavings effect. You could also use a cheese slicer or grater
- In a bowl crumble the graham crackers, you can have some bigger pieces and some finer pieces as well
- Now for the assembly. Assemble the parfait in a see-through glass, so that your guest will be able to see all the layers.
- Start with the cream filling, the graham cracker then cherries and repeat.
- When you get to the last layer sprinkle with the chocolate and serve

Thursday, June 7, 2012


As you can probably tell from many of my previous posts, scones are starting to be a thing in my kitchen.

With many clients ordering breakfast, I am constantly changing the flavour combinations to keep their daily breakfasts different! Today's was cinnamon raisin, a take off the classic cinnamon bun.

For a great morning treat that are easier to make then homemade cinnamon buns, give these scones a whirl!

Cinnamon Raisin Scones

3 cups flour
3/4 cup butter, cold & dubbed
1/3 cup sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup raisins
4 tbsp cinnamon

1. Sift together flour, salt, baking powder & baking soda. Add in sugar.
2. In either a food processor or mixer, add the cold butter (pulse or mix) until the butter and flour appear mealy, with a few pea sizes of butter
3. Using a fork mix in the buttermilk, pulling the dough together. (you could also use a dough hook)
4. Roll out the dough and sprinkle on the cinnamon and raisins.
5. Roll again incorporating the two ingredients throughout.
6. You can either roll the dough into a 3/4inch circle and cut into 8 wedges, or you can roll it out thinner and using a round cutter make circle scones. (If you do the circles, you will end up with about 20 depending on your thickness).
7. Before baking brush with buttermilk and sprinkle with coarse sugar.
8. Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


If you keep up with the top restaurants in the world, you will likely know that the #1 restaurant in the world right now is NOMA, in Copenhagen. Chef Rene Redzepi has sparked an incredible culinary movement through his Nordic and "locavore" type cuisine. His food is an "innovative gastronomic take on traditional cooking methods, fine Nordic produce and the legacy of our shared food heritage." (

For more on NOMA and to learn more about Rene you can read my previous post or visit:

I came across this video which is a must watch for any chef or culinary mind out there (or for the one who wants to know more about the inside of NOMA'S kitchen).

This video is called "Saturday Night Projects" and follows a Saturday night from a few of the cooks perspective at NOMA. I really can't do the video justice with my words. To understand how wonderful the Saturday Night Projects is, and to really see how Redzepi wants his cooks to experiment and grow, you must watch the video below.

This video comes from Arlene Stein, which was produced for the Terroir Symposium 2012.

Monday, June 4, 2012


I had a big breakfast for a client last week, and I really wanted to jazz it up. Enough of those rubbery eggs in a heater and greasy bacon! I wanted to serve something different and delicious. I love quiche and frittata's and they are a staple during the summer months. Frittata's are so easy to make, so I thought I would go off of that and make a strata.

A strata is a dish that is great for using up leftovers! You can use day old bread, eggs and whatever goodies you have lying around in your fridge. I sort of describe it as a savoury bread pudding, but more eggy.

To make this strata even more pleasing I made them in muffin tins, so that each person could have their own! The combination was delicious, juicy cherry tomatoes, goat cheese & basil from my garden. A crusty french baguette, eggs, salt and pepper and it was ready to bake.

Strata's are great for entertaining because you can cook them ahead of time and warm them up if need be, but they are best straight from the oven. They are a no fuss breakfast that is for sure!

Tomato, Basil & Goat Cheese Strata

Ingredients: Makes 12
- 18 cherry tomatoes halved (3 per muffin)
- 1/2 log of goat cheese
- handful of basil chopped or chiffonade
- salt & pepper
- 9 eggs
- 1/4 cup of milk
- 1/2 baguette (day old preferred)

- Grease your muffin pan (or bake them in muffin cups and remove after. This is WAY easier!)
- Cut your cherry tomatoes in half.
- Cube your baguette.
- Chop basil.
- Whisk eggs, milk, salt and pepper together.
- Assemble muffin cups - starting with 2-3 cubes of bread, then 3 halves of tomatoes, a few pieces of goat cheese and a sprinkle of basil.

- Fill the muffin cup 3/4 full

- Bake at 350 for 25-35 minutes or until strata is set (use a toothpick to check the centre, and if it comes out clean it is done!)
- Serve warm!


This weekend I was in New York City. Friday night, friends had made reservations for us at Gotham Bar & Grill. I didn't really know much about the place and was a bit hesitant, because I usually like to make the reservations and know a bit about the food and the chef! But it didn't matter in the end, because the night and food ended up to being incredible.

The restaurant is lovely, a hot spot on a Friday night, bustling with energy and pumping out insanely beautiful and refined food. Gotham is somewhat of a legendary restaurant in NYC, opening there doors in 1984 - and still managing to be within the top 25 restaurants in the city each year! Run by Chef Alfred Portale, the restaurants boasts a "breathtaking large but warm and hospitable destination that matched the ambitious design with sophist acted food and service..." All is true about Gotham, with not a bad seat in the house! We sat in the window, looking out over the streets of Greenwich village.

Now, to the most important part...the food of course!

The night before my dad, sister and I enjoyed a "raw bar" - complete with oysters, shrimp & lobster. We decided to do that again at Gotham as the fresh seafood came highly recommended, and it was a great way to try a few dishes and start the meal off light. (Perfect for a late night dinner!)

We ordered the Mayan chilled shrimp cocktail (which tasted just buttery), West coast oysters - which were incredibly deep & meaty, perfectly accompanied by a tart & acidic champagne mignonette, and finally the scallops, which were truly the star of the meal.

The scallop dish was composed of two day boat sea scallops which were seared, with a caramelized crust accompanied by parsnips, sun chokes and baby binje potatoes with a brown butter emulsion. I truly have never had such well cooked scallops. They were just heavenly, and with my favourite of roasted parsnips and brown butter, how could it get any better?!

The mains were equally as wonderful. My dad had the crisp soft shell crabs which were fried and served with orzo, shaved summer vegetables and smoked red chile sauce verjus. The crab was crunchy and crispy without being oily! My sister enjoyed the free range roasted chicken which was plump with juice and covered with a golden brown crispy roast chicken skin. Served with braised artichokes, fava beans, hen of the woods mushrooms & israeli couscous - this chicken is not to be missed. I rarely order chicken when I go out, but this is somewhere that I wished I had!! I had the Branzino (an italian whitefish) that was grilled and served with arugula, grilled leeks & cerignola olives. A lovely dish but a touch too acidic for my liking. As you can see by the length of the descriptions, the dishes are quite complex. But Gotham manages to produce incredible flavours that not only shine through on their own but work as part of the "big picture."

The desserts ended the night off as the star of the show! We ordered two to share, and then Gotham sent one out on the house - which would have been my pick, and was definitely the best! My favourite of the three was "Gotham Black Forest." A chocolate creme, chocolate dacquoise, a chocolate shortbread crumbled and cherry balsamic and bing cherries with a cream-less mint ice cream. This composition of this dish was just incredible, and made me truly feel like I was in a forbidden forest of sorts. This & the scallops were probably two of the top five dishes I have indulged in all year.

The second desert was called, "Blueberry Cremeux," and was a local blueberry and corn cake served with a sweet corn ice cream. Incredibly earthy, with a perfectly feeling of farm to table. This dish is perfect for those who love fresh and local produce. A delicious corn cake which was not mealy in the slightest!

The final dessert was an affogato (which is a scoop of italian ice cream and then served table side by pouring a shot of espresso over top). The dish was jazzed up but I really can't remember with what because I was too into the cherries!

For a special meal Gotham is your spot. Romantic, fun, comforting, hospitable - they hit ever mark with ease! Thank you for wonderful meal!

Sunday, June 3, 2012


Thought I would share these "menus" that my mom found the other day.

My love for entertaining and menu creation started from a young age, as evident from my old menus. This menu was for the "Starlight Cafe" featuring "frut" as the dessert. I used to make them all the time for any dinner party we had or when we had guests for dinner!