Tuesday, June 30, 2009
It's a very easy dish, with pretty much just two ingredients: cabbage and soy sauce. I like it pretty salty so I add a lot of soy sauce. I know cabbage (and its small relative, Brussel sprouts) is not a very popular vegetable. I don't really understand. I like both the taste and texture of cabbage.
Stir Fried Cabbage
You could add some onion to this dish but I like it just this way. I used a Savoy cabbage, but any cabbage will do.
* cabbage, sliced thinly (about ¼" thick)
* soy sauce
Heat up oil in a pan.
Add cabbage slices.
Add soy sauce to taste and mix well.
Cook until the cabbage is cooked through.
Sliced cabbage and some soy sauce (the more the better for me!).
Sunday, June 28, 2009
MC and I spent her last day visiting me in Toronto. The plan was to shop on Queen Street West and at the Toronto Eaton Center. We picked a great rainy day to shop outside. Once we were soaked and dirty from the rain, we decided to call it quits and have lunch. We discovered Indian food is a great relief when you feel cranky from the rain. We picked India Palace because the Indian restaurant next door had a long waiting line and we were not willing to wait in the rain. I did notice that there were a few Indian restaurants in the same block, all offering a $10.95 buffet.
I like Indian buffets because you can try different things. Having said that, I usually just stick to what I like. Some will argue the quality of the food at a buffet is not as good. This is especially true for deep-fried appetizers like pakoras and samosas; they are never at their best at buffets because they're not freshly fried. I tend to overeat at buffets, trying to get my money's worth. I had three plates that were very similar, as you can see below. MC and I both really enjoyed the saag paneer (spinach and cheese). You can notice that by my last dish, I was only getting sauce and naan bread to sop it up. MC and I tried to minimize waste by re-using our plates but were chided for it. I guess it's not a hygienic practice...
Before we stopped for lunch, we were shopping for shoes near the MuchMusic building. We saw people setting up for the MMVA's. While we were looking at shoes, the salespeople started dancing and screamed out that Lady Gaga was singing. So we went outside to watch her rehearse. I thought it was funny because I only recently discovered Lady Gaga and I find her songs are perfect for running (maybe just slightly too slow). When I mentioned this to MC, she was very unimpressed and thought Lady Gaga will just be a one year wonder. I guess we'll see... Meanwhile, I'll keep running to Just Dance!
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Zooma Zooma Café
3839 Main Street
Jordan Village, Ontario
After our shopping, we made our first winery stop at Cave Spring Cellars and noticed Zooma Zooma Café across the street. It looked like the perfect spot to have lunch, with tables and chairs set up outside. However, we were weary that it would be on the expensive side. When we checked out the menu, we were pleased to find that the prices were affordable.
Our not-so-impressive sandwiches.
Cave Spring Cellars (at the top), Tawse Winery (bottom left) and Vineland Estates Winery (on the right).
4159 Jordan Road
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Before dinner, I served some kielbasa and Monterey Jack with Garlic and Basil cheese that I bought in Wisconsin. I discovered kielbasa, a Polish sausage, in Hamilton when my sister introduced me to it. My sister used to work with a Polish colleague who brought her to a Polish deli. I should really write a post about it one day. I thought MC should experience kielbasa since I always buy some to bring back to Montréal (although I'm sure could find some there!). As for the cheese, though the basil flavour was great, I thought the cheese was rather mild. Nothing too exciting...!
Adapted from Rachael Ray's Chicken with Mushrooms and Balsamic Cream Sauce. I think sun-dried tomatoes make any pasta taste better and its addition to this dish proved I am right! One trick that MC thought very useful is that if you buy chicken broth and you do not use it all, freeze it into ice cubes and you use it for next time!
* 1 boneless chicken breasts, grilled and sliced
* 1 large shallots, thinly sliced
* fresh thyme leaves, chopped
* a glug of Marsala wine
* a glug balsamic vinegar
* 1-2 tbsp heavy cream or half-and-half
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
On the second day of MC's visit, it was still raining. So instead of playing tennis, we changed our plans to another racquet sport: squash. However, I needed to find a second squash racquet. My friend Superfly was nice enough to lend us his and met him at Poco Loco for lunch so we could pick up his racquet.
Even though Poco Loco is two minutes away from my old workplace, I never got a chance to visit it. It seems to be a popular lunch spot, as I found a few of my former colleagues sitting at the counter. The burrito seemed to be the most popular choice. MC and I decided to share a chalupa combo (for about $6), which includes a drink, because we did not want to overeat before our squash game. We payed an extra $0.65 for guacamole, which was definitely worthwhile.
I thought the chalupas, which consisted of tostada's topped with ground beef, were good but nothing special. However, I am slightly biased after enjoying authentic chalupas in Chicago the week before. Poco Loco seems like the perfect lunch spot because the food is good, the prices are definitely affordable and the service was quick.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
MC and I had a great trip in Morroco. It was just as I imagined, and a bit more. As women, we got more attention than we wanted. Otherwise, the food was great, simple and delicious. Everything is so colourful over there. I loved going into a souk, even though it's quite intense. We spent a few days in the city of Marrakesh then spent most of our days in a 4x4 driving through the Atlas mountain range. We spent our final days at the beach in Agadir.
Tajine au Poulet et aux Olives (Chicken and Olive Tajine) - Serves 3-4
Adapted from Isabelle Brossard (Ricardo).
Sunday, June 21, 2009
I HATE traffic!!
3619 W. North Avenue
Our plan was to first stop by for some authentic Mexican food that was featured on Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. My sister sent me a link to Cemitas Puebla because she was intrigued by their cemita sandwiches, that can only be found in the city of Puebla. Trapezista enthusiastically agreed, really missing good Mexican food after having spent a year and a half in Mexico.
Cemitas Puebla is situated in the Humboldt Park neighbourhood that could probably second as Little Mexico. When we did not have change for parking, we bought a bottle of water at a convenience store and had to pay a man behind a bulletproof glass pane. This doesn't exist in Canada!! Trapezista was a little worried about leaving her car on the street. If only we had known that there is parking close to the restaurant!
We guessed that Cemitas Puebla would fall under the dive category. However, don't be deterred! The food and the warm welcoming by the owners totally make up for it! We were greeted by the owner, who explained to us what a cemita is. We then sat down and once we decided what we wanted to eat, we went to the counter to order.
Cemitas Puebla's counter and interesting posters on the ceiling.
We decided to first share chalupas ($3.00), which consisted of five corn tortillas doused in salsa verde and salsa roja topped with onions and aged cheese. I started with the salsa roja and thought it was very hot (and I think I have a good tolerance for heat). Trapezista preferred the salsa verde, which was strong in coriander flavour and not as spicy. We were very happy with our appetizer!
The owners of Cemitas Puebla and myself.
After checking in at our hostel, we were finally ready to check out the Windy City. I got to admire Chicago's great architecture. We walked to the Millenium Park and had fun with the mirrored Cloud Gate. I was really wowed by the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, designed by Frank Gehry, surrounded by people on their lawn chairs, watching a free classical music concert, which was part of the Grant Park Music Festival.
I liked the elevated trains.
The Crown Fountain in Millenium Park is quite... interesting?!
The next day, we headed home to Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. I had a great time on the road trip, full of great scenery and some great food. I couldn't have asked for a better driver than Trapezista! Everyone should go on a road trip, even if it does not compare to Jack Kerouac's!