Wednesday, July 27, 2011

lyonnaise salad for one

Look ma! I poached an egg! Seriously. I have only ever attempted this once before and it was an epic disaster. I was craving poached eggs on toast at the time (my favourite breakfast, especially when liberally doused with hot sauce) and no matter what I did, the whites spread out through the water like a spider's web. It was a mess of vinegar, water and albumen. Adam swooped in to rescue my breakfast and while his poached eggs were miles ahead of mine, they were still sub-par and somewhat disastrous.

I've come to the conclusion that the eggs really do have to be super fresh for it to work. I have based this on empirical evidence as well as the advice of a colleague. Last time, I'd been following a youtube video made by someone who stated that the fresh egg rule was preposterous, then proceeded to make a perfect poached egg. Maybe you can hack it with week old eggs if you're an egg poaching superstar, but for us mortals - fresh is best.

Monday, July 18, 2011

tarragon-roasted strawberries with caramel cream


This weekend, I said hello to two old friends: Vancouver and the flu. Isn't that always the way? You get some time off work, you travel for hours, then you wake up the next day with an unwelcome viral stowaway and he's beginning to let himself show. I yo-yoed for the entire day, culminating in a spectacular crash while out for dinner at Tavola. Fun, feverish times.

Despite the fact that I had to postpone my trip-within-a-trip to Vancouver Island today to visit family there, today has actually been okay. Is it possible that Cold FX isn't just voodoo? I've felt totally normal since I woke up - completely bizarre, given that last night I felt like death. My new, fresh energy was to the point where I got that other bug I get on a regular basis. The bug to COOK. And how could I not create something with my stepmom's spectacular cookbook library at hand?

Saturday, July 16, 2011

simple summer green salad with avocado and fresh dill

Ahhh, summer. I may moan about the heat and humidity, but I love love love the sunny days here! I'm leaving for a week to the land of rain, so I'm trying to soak up all the sun I can... by reclining on the couch to write this post, doing laundry, washing dishes, packing.... oh well. The blinds are open and I'm getting as much as humanly possible (given all the last minute chores) before my Vitamin D levels plummet on the west coast.

I'm not sure what will happen on this blog next week. Perhaps I'll engage in some cooking project with my dad and stepmom (they did mention we would make breakfast tomorrow - eating at their house is always exciting!), perhaps I'll cook something enormous for everyone on my mom's end. Maybe, just maybe... I'm hoping the lovely Foodess will want to use our date to have a baking day? Double blog post? Jenn? Wanna wanna??  I'll definitely be hitting up my favourite restaurants while I'm there too, so I may do a couple of restaurant reviews. None of them will be objective, because I only plan on visiting long-standing favourites that I yearn for while away from home.

Monday, July 11, 2011

lemon cranberry muffins

This has been a good weekend. It was full of haircuts, pitchers of sangria, barbeques, movie theatres and friends.  It did have its low points - I did a pretty sick load of dirty dishes, but I quickly rewarded myself with fruit salad and homemade muffins. Yum!

This batter is so versatile. I've used it as a loaf, in muffins... even as the cake base for a trifle. It's light, wonderful and not overly sweet. The muffins aren't too filling, but that's okay... you can eat three of them. I won't look.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

persian wrap with tomato, feta and fresh herbs

Sometimes I turn into a huge baby. I wish I could say this was a rare occurrence, but unfortunately it happens on a semi-regular basis. I can't tell you how lucky I am that Adam just laughs it off, tells me I'm being ridiculous, then proceeds to take care of me.

Last night was one such instance of babydom. After a long day of work, I was so hungry that my stomach was eating itself. Compounding this was the fact that it was hot and muggy outside, therefore it was disgusting in our apartment. We walked to a restaurant to get some dinner, only to find it closed. DISASTER! At this stage I had reached the point of no return - where nothing, absolutely nothing, would make me happy. I was cranky, hungry, hot and lacking fresh air. Adam came to the rescue as he always does, this time with the idea of recreating Byblos' delicious Persian wraps. Of course, I didn't come around to this idea until we got home from the store and I'd devoured about 100 local strawberries like a maniac. Unwashed. I'm so ashamed.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

moose shaped owl cookies (happy belated canada day!)

These were supposed to be posted yesterday for the holiday, but we had a bit of a crisis in squirrel land over the past couple of days and needless to say, the cookies didn't get posted. They also didn't get eaten, even though I made them on Wednesday night. They taste awesome though, believe me!

You may be wondering why I call these "owl cookies" even though they appear to have nothing to do with owls. I'm up to my old tricks of recreating food in my kitchen that no longer exists to buy. For the longest time, there was this little bakery by the corner of 10th and Sasamat in Vancouver. They sold these huge owl cookies. They were sugar cookies made with oatmeal and whole wheat flour, rolled out and cut out with an owl-shaped cookie cutter. I was a relatively picky eater and not excited about whole wheat anything at the time, so it's a pretty big statement to say that I not only ate them, but I loved them. So many of those owl cookies made it into my happy little belly.