Looks like my January semester is off to a great start so long as my lunches look like this: curried chicken salad sandwich on homemade bread with homemade mayo (dead simple to make, 3 ingredients: egg yolk, oil, mustard. plus lemon + salt to taste.)

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Dear future me:

Do not attempt to mash under cooked potatoes. Counter to your time saving intuition, this will actually increase your cooking time (and frustration) 4 fold. You will be cursing at yourself for your foolishness, and then you will be making a mess in trying to fix your lumpy mass of a mess.

Also: find your ricer. I doubt the kitchen gremlins have actually stolen it. And/or buy a potato masher. Pastry cutters are are subpar for the task at hand.

Damn rice eating ancestors for not teaching me how to mash potatoes!


For those of you who love cookbooks as much a I (often I will have an old favourite on my nightstand), check out this interesting read from NY Times. Ghostwriting is not a new phenomenon, but it never really occurred to me that chefs often don’t pen their own work. Of course, once the article was brought to my attention, it seemed like a glaringly obvious facts. In any case, it’s an interesting read! I’d love to hear your thoughts.

I suspect normal folks with evening munchies quench their craving by going to the nearest convenience store. In our house, munchies often lead to full fledged kitchen adventures.

This evening’s snack is brought to you (me?) by Anthony Bordain’s No Reservations: the boy, watching S02E04’s feature on Quebec, became nostalgic for our days in Montreal.  Nostalgic specifically for La Banquise. I should add that we’ve never actually been there (and that yes, I admit this with much sorrow and sheepishness), but we’d often walk past this little joint that was constantly packed with people and presumably delicious poutine.

Potatoes were washed and sliced. Generous amounts of oil went into a cast iron pot.

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I was never a fan of creamy Caesar salads, and I suspect my disdain was grounded in encounters with mediocre-at-best bottled versions. For longer than I can remember, the boy and I have been quite happy making our own vinaigrettey rendition and I think we would’ve happily continued to do so had it not been for Sunday. Which was the boy’s first day off since starting  his month long stint in Halifax (at the HSOW) as Hoffmann in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann (an opera featuring drunkenness, death, evil geniuses and love. Shameless plug Sidenote: his performance dates are August 6 (7:30PM) and August 13 (2PM). Concept: Victorian steampunk. The show’s going to be awesome.)
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Barbeques were a thing while I was growing up – like a Big-Deal-Rarely-Occurring kind of thing that happened once or twice a year (and usually only once). Usually in the company of others, copious amounts of food were cooked and consumed: wings, steak, pork chops, sausages, fish, corn, other veggies. These were always delicious, but grilling was exclusively a summertime activity and there was none of this business of tossing-a-steak-on-the-BBQ-for-dinner. For the longest time, I was under the impression that everyone had a BBQ as clean as ours. My learning curve with the BBQ I’m sure will be reminiscent of my journey with the humble potato (e.g. mind being blown with shepherd’s pie). I’ve always loved grilled goodies, but admittedly have left grilling to the men. Thanks to the boy and tonight’s happenings, the tides are shifting.

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Ever since my last going-out-for-sushi excursion, I’ve been wanting to make my own miso soup. How hard can it be? Miso paste, dashi, some fun tasty things like tofu/seaweed/shitakes/green onions.

All I needed were the ingredients to make dashi: bonito flakes and kombu seaweed. So off I went to United (where I procured salmon for gravlax not too long ago) thought it ended up taking me two visits because they were out of stock for me to make stock. I only wish I knew where to buy bonito flakes in a larger, less cutesy (small individually packed packages) format. Where does the industry go shopping for Japanese ingredients? I certainly can’t complain, though, since I found the stuff in LondONT. Read More