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fish wellington – a dinner party hit!

fish wellington - light & delicateWe have Julia Child to thank for making beef Wellington popular.  The dish was aired in 1965 on a New Year’s day broadcast.  I have eaten it maybe two or three times during my adult life; I enjoyed it but sometimes the meat was overcooked and when buying in a restauarnt, it isn’t cheap.  It was always considered a posh dish to serve your guests. Continue Reading →

black garlic – a labour of love

black garlic, sweet & mildLast year I saw a post on Instagram talking about black garlic.  My initial thought was EWW.  How could this be a good thing and how could chefs rave about it?  Surely this was some sort of crazy food fad.  For me, if veggies look dark, then they’re most probably rotten.  But a quick glance on the web and I found the Koreans have been fermenting garlic for years.  They age it for at least 30 days.  That seemed like too much hard work and never gave it another thought, that was, until… Continue Reading →

roasted radishes – so pretty!

roasted radishes - so mild & deliciousIf you follow me on Instagram, you’ve most probably seen a few photos I’ve taken Saturday mornings at our local farmers’ market.  It’s a perfect way to connect with vendors who earn their living off the land and it’s inspiration for me deciding what to make for dinner that night.  I always find something new.  Continue Reading →

how to cook a lobster – it’s easier than you think!

how to cook a lobsterLobster season is now open and the shop near us, Wayne’s World Lobster, opened its doors last Thursday.  Heading there to pick out our lobster was a fond reminder of my childhood.  Twice a year (possibly 3) my parents would drive to a lobster pound and choose the ones they would take home.  Sometimes my dad would go alone and he always brought back periwinkles, clams, and on occasion, scallops.  It was a real treat and my dad always cooked and cut up the lobster.  Continue Reading →

fresh mozzarella, sweet cherry peppers and arugula pie

pizza made with no-knead doughFlatbreads have been consumed by the ancient Egyptians, Romans and Greeks.  The humble pizza/pie (an expanded version of a flatbread), became popular in the USA in the mid-1900s when the Neapolitans came over for factory jobs.  According to history.com, the first documented pizzeria was Lombardi’s in Manhattan, licensed to sell pizza in 1905 and is still in operation.  Loads of people love pizza but making your own can be tricky.  The dough is key and can make it a wonderful or just so-so eating experience. Continue Reading →

double chocolate chip parfait – how to use a failed recipe

double chocolate chip parfaitIt happens.  Cooks of all levels have experienced a failed recipe at least once, maybe more.  The thing is, a failed recipe has room for improvement and making it into something better the next time around.  That’s how we discover things, through trial and error.  Continue Reading →

hummus (with a surprising ingredient)

hummus - with a suprising ingredientMost of us have, at some point, enjoyed hummus either as a dip with pita bread and veggies or as a condiment slathered over a falafel.  The recipe is simple;  grab a can of chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans), garlic, tahini, lemon or lime juice, coriander and process in a blender.  Hummus is a healthy substitute for mayonnaise or butter.  That said, I went off it for a period of time as I found it boring until I decided to add anchovies…blame it on the anchovy butter I made a couple of weeks ago.  Sure, you can jazz it up by adding sumac or cumin but nothing quite took hold of my taste buds the way anchovies did. Continue Reading →

cioppino and a San Francisco mini trip

Italian American fish stew - cioppinoDuring the first week in March, Mr. S and I were in San Francisco; he was attending GDC while I was a tourist for 5 days.  I had never been before and was eager to explore as much as possible and I did!  Each day was packed with something new.  We stayed in the Mission District (so glad we did) and would walk to the Moscone Center every day.  Breakfast was in a different place each morning usually eating at establishments that promoted locally grown food.  Some of the memorable ones were Blue Bottle Coffee (the softest poached eggs on toast with avocado), Chow Food Bar (buttermilk pancakes to die for), and Tartine Bakery & Cafe (ham and swiss croissants that melted in your mouth).  I would have breakfast with Mr. S and then bid him farewell as he went on to the GDC. Continue Reading →

Portland Street Crêperie – a taste of France

Portland Street Crêperie - Dartmouth, NSWho doesn’t enjoy a delicious crêpe? Even better when a father and son duo decided to open a crêperie 18 months ago in downtown Dartmouth. Over the past 24 months the downtown core has seen a resurgence in the retail and food industry; mostly started by young, enthusiastic entrepreneurs. Mr. S and I are always delighted when we hear about new ventures coming to our neighbourhood. When Neil and his son, Max, opened their doors back in October 2015, we were one of their first customers. Portland Street Crêperie (55 Portland Street) is a delightful 16-seat bistro with 4 additional tables for outdoor seating in Spring through to the Fall. Large windows mean an abundance of natural light making for a cheery place to enjoy a meal there.

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homemade anchovy butter (umami-rich)

Making flavoured butter isn’t a new invention but when anchovies are added, you get a whole lotta umami-rich going on.  Say what?  Umami is a trendy foodie word for a pleasant savoury taste.  In a nutshell, something to pump up the flavour like adding a splash of fish sauce or lime juice.  I read that you can even use soy sauce in lieu of parmesan over tomato sauce; who runs out of Parmesan cheese?  Anchovy butter can be used in many ways to enhance the food you put on the table. Continue Reading →