Thursday, September 30, 2010

mother's sandwich shop


I'm happy that this sign is still up, even though the shop itself is long gone. I feel like I would have really liked the sandwiches there.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

greedy little lunch



rillet, crackers, pickles.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

things to do on a rainy day

happy yellow necklace
making happy yellow necklaces to brighten up the gloomy outside....

happy yellow necklace

glass, wood, pyrite

comfort food #6

Speaking of cheeseburgers...

shake shack

I'm enough of a nerd to spend my time googling the words "shake" and "shack" (having never been, so sad, oh so sad) to get this little bugger to be just so.

Deee. Lish. Ooousss. And addictive as hell!

Firstly, a small, handheld size is best. No commitment, just instantaneous love. Nice, freshly ground beef (I seasoned mine with just a few shakes of worchestershire and s & p).

You gotta make conservative little pucks of meat, which you then proceed to sear over incredibly high heat. And as you do, it's all about the forceful SQUISH-ing down of your patty with the flipper. It's all about the crust, believe me! And maybe a squirt of fake yellow mustard right on top as its cooking. (It's like Animal Style+ Shackburger = extra goodness).

A soft bun - lightly toasted - is key. All the better to soak up the thousand island, er, secret sauce. (That's mayo, ketchup, sweet pickle relish, and a touch of mustard. Yes, I watch the Triple D religiously as well.) As the patty finishes up cooking, lay on a slice of melty processed cheese and cover to let it finish steam/melt. Please, please, don't feel the need to be fancy and slap on "real" cheese...I promise that once you believe in the power of good ol' American cheese (Kraft Singles around these parts), you will be a convert for life.

A few pickles, iceberg, a slice of tomato (s&p of course), and you're good to go.

We had ours with a cold root beer. Highly recommended!

Monday, September 27, 2010

lean and mean

And oh so clean.

At least, that's how I felt after knocking back this awesome plate D put together. Yes, I am one very lucky gal. It's almost worth overdoing it on greasy cheeseburgers - for, ahem, example - to crave something fresh and crisp for a change. Veggies and fruit, who knew?

cucumbers, orange, grapefruit, avocado, shallots in lime juice...

white bass marinating in lemon and lime juice, yeah!


Dinner is served! Coriander, basil, radish and a touch of olive oil to top it all off.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

guilty pleasures #4

Oh man, I'm not sure if I should even be sharing this, it's so undercover...but then again, I guess that's why they call them guilty pleasures!

Every now and then D and I will embark on a single minded mission to get our eat on, even if that means going on covert trips to the store to grab those little things we've been craving all week. (Obviously for me, that usually ends up being any and all snacks made with fat and salt. I'm pretty predictable that way.)

This little number is from awhile back, but just looking at this - don't judge us yet, you know you've got your own hit list! - makes me realize we're due for another round soon:


Here we have what I'd call our own "secret charcuterie" board, although I guess I should use extra air quotes around the charcuterie bit, seeing as there's only one bit o'meat - and a questionable one at that - to be found. But you get the picture.

Beginning from the top left (and as you find so often, following in a clockwise manner):
  • A nice little wedge of creamy, garlic-y Boursin. Cold and straight from its cute foil pack, yessir.
  • Spoonfuls of oil packed giardiniera. D is very, shall we say, particular about getting to eat all of the cauliflower bits. Salty pickled crunchy goodness. A perfect mouthful with...
  • Slices of Cracker Barrel. Medium orange shade, of course! (They happen to also melt quite nicely over our cracker selection.)
  • Ryvita (mine, from when I'm feeling clean and eating them with things like almond butter and raw honey), Triscuits - the originals, full salt most definitely, and Bretons to round it all out.
  • On to the veggies and dip section. A fancy dancy quenelle of artichoke dip, also known as mayo with extras, to go with our cukes.
  • Oh Brandt. How we love your chubby tubes of liverwurst, especially the Gold Tube with Chopped Herbs. So much secret love going on with this one!
  • Fish She Is Very Small. That's what's written on the tin of Millionaires Sardines, where you'll also see a smartly dressed little fishie, tux and all, sporting a monocle and top hat. My very favourite squished on crackers. Umm...
  • It's very unusual to find extra slices of smoked salmon around our place. Mostly because I will usually eat it all upon first sighting. I must be part bear or something. Also some philly cream cheese to go with.
  • More salt and crunch options in the form of green olives and radishes. Sometimes I'll snack on the radish with salt (surprise) and butter (!) too...
Working up an appetite now. But shhh, don't tell anyone, k? Until next time!

Friday, September 24, 2010

strange but true

Some goofy and random encounters from the last bit:

(Or rather, the odd things you get to see when you prep for a food show about birthday parties for kids...)


If roses are red, and violets are blue, then making a spectacular Yellow and Blue Dye No. 5 extravaganza of a beast is like the ultimate bouquet of love to show your special little someone how much you care. That and the many cups of icing sugar - and butter, so much butter - used in the frosting! I wish I had the final cake to show was frosted in a fluffy white meringue (clouds!) and topped with a giant yellow "chocolate" sun. With giant rays. Yeah!

Ok, ok. So kids love hot dogs, right? And creepy crawly things like worms and snakes? What about...


These dudes get three exclamation marks because they're fun x 3. The host of the show had such a giggle fit making them that for the rest of the season our friends here would appear on all the monitors anytime there was a break. Aww, I love their silly little tongues!

Hot Dog Snakes! In the oven!

(In case you were wondering, we ended up serving them on a great big tray covered in astroturf.)

Happy Birthday Kiddo!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

mazel tov! my dearest and loveliest friends, M and N. What a beautiful, extraordinary day!

A few things you will want to know about our couple, and about this most special of days:

wedding feet

1) They come from the nicest, kindest, most hilarious families you could imagine. (M has told me of her bubbie's epic fridge stashes of restaurant butter pats and mini jam packages, and how the secret recipe for her famous shortbread cookies has been passed down to her: "Vel, it's very simple. You take two cups of sugar...and thirty six packets of butter...")


2) M herself is one of the most amazing women I've ever met. I have yet to meet anyone who loves anything and everything to do with food and cooking more that her! Well, her new hubby perhaps. I should mention that they spend their weekends tapping maple trees and making syrup, and that N, as a hobby, grew prize winning garlic at his family farm.

3) Also, hanging out with them is pretty awesome.

ruth's cheese
ridiculously delicious cheeses from Ruth Klahsen

4) They know how to eat. And laugh. And have everyone join them!

bresaola from Fabio Bondi of Local Kitchen

bread and charcuterie
more charcuterie and spectacular bread from St. John's

homemade pickles

table settings
table settings...

apricot, plum
...named after favourite foods, of course!

butter mise
The pasta station. Check out that butter mise!

pasta station
The pasta was hand rolled in the wee hours the morning of. Then stuffed with fresh ricotta, parm and some farm fresh egg yolks...

fresh ricotta, cherry tomato
...can you feel the love?

the feast
Let the feasting begin!

Thanks again for having us join in the celebrations. Love you guys!!!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

an oldie...

601 King Street West

...and definitely a goodie.

I think this was taken in 2001. Back alley, off of Portland. The sketchy building they're in front of has long been torn down to make way for the ever growing forest of condos there today.

From the tales I've been told, this was back in the day where the fish "room" was practically outside, and the cooks changed on the line (no space anywhere else). In five years there will be additions of a private dining room, some skylights, and more than three times as many boys (and a few girls) working away in the two side-by-side restaurants...

It's nice to stumble upon these pictures. Hope everyone is doing well!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

back to it

Yes, it's been waaaay too long. I've got so many things to catch up on - and I'm excited to start sharing again!


So here we go...