Food


Mom Who Runs...runs so she can consume some extra calories. I am passionate about entertaining, trying new recipes, tasting new products, exploring new restaurants and of course...I will be telling you about it RIGHT HERE. So if you are a foodie like I am, keep clicking on this column.

Oct
19

If you asked me “what is my definition of a healthy meal?”…this is how I would reply.

The meal would consist of fruit, veggies, protein and some carbs.  Now how would I ensure that these meals would appeal to kids?  Let’s see…here’s a few TIPS.

a) Make sure that the meal is colourful.  It’s funny how presentation can go  along way!

meals - fish, potatoes,pea

b) A deconstructed salad (see photo) is a great way for your kids to choose what THEY like. This is perfect for those families where one child doesn’t like tomatoes and the other child does. (you know exactly what I mean..LOL).

healthy - deconstructed

c) Have fun with your food! Again – presentation goes a long way. This is a photo of a homemade healthy pancake with just a touch of Nutella.

healthy - pancakes

d) Invest in a Spiralizer and turn boring vegetables into FUN vegetables. Trust me – this works!!

healhty-spiralizer

To ensure that I stay within my budget, I always shop at No Frills so I can get the best prices and take advantage of using my PC Points.  I signed up for the PC app when I attended the launch of the PC Plus program back in May 2013. I’ve been a faithful user ever since. In fact I’m pretty sure I was downloading the app while Kathy Buckworth was talking about it at the launch. (yup – I’m an eager beaver when it comes to saving $$)

There is no doubt that making healthy meals is important to me and it’s also important to me that I spend my money wisely. No question that the PC Plus program and No Frills helps me obtain my goals.

For more information:

No Frills: www.pcplus.ca

Instagram: #PCPlus

Disclosure: I am blogger participating in a program with No Frills. I have received compensation for this blog post however all opinions are my own.

 

 

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Oct
17

The Delicious Food Show is a  3 day food-lovers event designed to engage the consumer with FOOD and entertainment. There’s over 200 exhibitors and 50 live cooking demonstrations and classes.

I had the chance this morning to listen to these 3 celebrity chefs in an informal question and answer! #lucky me.

Top Left: Chuck Hughes: Top Right: Tyler Florence and Bottom Left: Mario Batali. #squeal

dfs - chefs

Then I wondered thru the show in search of new products to share with you! Here’s a few products that caught my attention.

1. nuPasta: I use to enjoy a pasta that was low in carbs and then stopped buying it as I couldn’t take the smell. This NEW (local) product doesn’t have that same strong odour. YAY. Not to mention it’s Gluten Free, Kosher, Sugar Free, Sodium Free, doesn’t need refrigeration and has no preservatives.  Plus it can be ready in ONE minute.

dfs - nupasta

b) I also adored these custom plates  by Jacqueline Poirier.   Wouldn’t these plates just brighten up a kitchen?

dfs - platesc) Strauss Water:   The perfect multi purpose water system as it’s hooked up to your main water line and delivers an unlimited supply of purified, chilled or BOILING or room temperature water. Bye Bye Kettle, Bye Bye Water Bottles!

dfs - strauss

 

The Delicious Food Show takes place Oct 17 – 17 at the Direct Energy Centre, Exhibition Place, Toronto.

SHOW DATES & HOURS

Friday, October 17th, 2014: 10 AM – 9 PM

Saturday, October 18th, 2014: 10AM – 8PM
Sunday, October 19th, 2014: 10AM – 6PM

For more information about the schedule or to buy online tickets, please click here!

Have a great weekend that is full of delicious-ness!

 

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Oct
16

Thanksgiving Recap


I didn’t grow up celebrating Thanksgiving but this doesn’t mean that I didn’t want to take advantage of the long weekend. So off I went to Taboo  to take advantage of some peace and quiet and to enjoy the beautiful Fall season.

Naturally I had to start the trip with a stop at  Webers  to enjoy one of their famous hamburgers.

thanksgiving - webers

The weekend was all about food and snapping photos of the scenery. What a perfect time of year to take a lot of photos. I simply couldn’t stop.

thanksgiving - scenery

I even managed to get off the couch and stroll thru Gravenhurst, Bracebridge and Bala too! Naturally there was a goal. ..to find the perfect butter tart! Sadly Marty’s World Famous Cafe was closed but I managed to find 2 butter tarts to compare.

thanksgiving - buttertart

The butter tart on the right is from The Chancery Lane Co.  (33 Manitoba St, Gravenhurst, ON 705 645 424).  This butter tart is actually called: Rick’s Handbaked in Muskoka butter tarts.

The butter tart on the left is from Gravenhurst Bakery. (14 Brock St, Gravenhurst, ON 705 687 2579.

In my humble opinion: I preferred the butter tart from The Chancery Lane Co. (pastry, filling and flavour)

When I wasn’t busy eating butter tarts I was busy in the kitchen cooking up a storm. I brought up some goodies from Yummy Market as well as a bag of root vegetables from Cookstown Greens. Seriously there was no shortage of good food.

thanksgiving - food

The weekend also included Season 2 of Prisoners of War  which can be found at Videoflicks. I watched Season 1 in Vegas and now I had the chance to watch Season 2 at Taboo. Why is it that I love watching a TV series while Im away? LOL

The best part of the weekend was returning back to Toronto to find out that I had received a Hoptorial Six-Pack from Muskoka Brewery. Each pack features two bottles of the brewery’s famous IPAs. I opened up a bottle of the Detour immediately as a way of reminding myself what a fantastic weekend I had.

thanksgiving - beer

Cheers!!

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Oct
14

We all have our standard comfort foods, right? I have two comfort foods (with a twist) that I would like to share with you that might surprise you. I don’t know about you but as the temperatures start to drop and the days get darker, I’m seeking more and more “comfort foods”. There’s no question that my diet in the summer is different than my diet in the winter.

As always, No Frills helps me find the right ingredients for my healthy comfort foods at the right prices. I’m one of those people who’s aware of prices and No Frills has been my grocery store of choice for years to help me achieve my goals!

So here’s my two favourite healthy comfort foods…..with a twist!

a) GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICH WITH MUSTARD.

My dad taught me this trick when I was a teenager and often crave this sandwich on a cold wintery day. Try it – you might like it too!!

comfort - grilled cheese

b) BAKED TOAST WITH COTTAGE CHEESE AND CINNAMON

I got introduced to this combo when I was on Weight Watchers many decades ago. Basically you take cottage cheese and spread it on a piece of bread. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes.  The cheese gets all gooey and it’s truly a comforting snack.

comfort - cheese toast

I know that my local No Frills is always there to provide me with great prices and I can enjoy my comfort foods without having to spend a lot of $$. Naturally I love collecting my PC Plus points too. So don’t hesitate and download the PC Plus app today.  It’s a win win!!

sign

Please feel free to share your favourite comfort foods!!

For more information:

No Frills www.pcplus.ca

Instagram: #PCPlus

Disclosure: I am blogger participating in a program with No Frills. I have received compensation for this blog post however all opinions are my own.

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Oct
10

 A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of walking thru Kensington Market with a fellow foodie from Ottawa. Here’s a recap of where we went.

a) Fika: (28 Kensington) We started off our tour with a cup of coffee at this charming coffee shop.

kensington - fika

b) St. Andrew Poultry (17 St. Andrew Street). This place has been on my radar since the summer and I’m so happy that I finally checked it out. I managed to inhale a chicken shawarma (in a box without the bread) and will definitely return to inhale some more of this goodness. For me to say this is huge as I rarely eat chicken. I also bought the “spice crunch” which I’m throwing into everything I make….salads, soups, etc.

kensington - st andrew

c) Blackbird Baking Co. (172 Baldwin). Again, I’ve been meaning to check this place out since the summer! Sadly I didn’t buy anything as I’m trying not to eat a lot of bread but I really (really) wanted to. Seriously, I’ve heard nothing but excellent comments about the quality of their bread.

kensington - blackbird

d) Sanagan’s Meat Locker (176 Baldwin). I was too fully from the chicken shawarma but I was lucky enough to return the next day to enjoy one of their sandwiches. #yum. I don’t buy meat but if I did I would be buying it from this place!

kensington - sanagans

e) Jimmy’s Coffee: It was so beautiful out that we decided to end our tour with a cup of coffee. We wanted to enjoy it on their backyard patio but everyone else had the same idea!!

We met for close to two hours and I enjoyed every minute of playing tour guide! Kensington Market is really a fantastic unique part of Toronto that is often forgotten by people who live in Toronto. Hope you get a chance to visit soon.

 

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Oct
05

I entertain a lot! But I really really enjoy it. I’m passionate about all aspects of entertaining….planning the menu, buying the flowers, setting the table, and cooking too! The only part I don’t enjoy is cleaning up and I’m quite sure that I will never enjoy that part!

table

Entertaining can be expensive but it doesn’t have to be! Here are some tips for Holiday Entertaining.

a) Try and not buy prepared foods. In fact, try and make everything from scratch. Trust me it will taste better AND it will be cheaper. I even make my own pita crisps!

b) Prepare a menu with vegetables that are in SEASON. This will really reduce the cost of your meal.

c) When I shop at No Frills, I’m confident that my grocery bill is going to be lower than shopping at competitors. Not to mention I can use my PC  points to help offset the costs of my meal! Im positively thrilled that PC Plus is now available at No Friils. It’s so easy to earn points toward dollars off your grocery bill and that’s right up my alley!!

no frills - sign

c) Develop a menu where you get a lot of bang for your buck. For example, this apple crisp recipe or these two ingredient desserts.

d) My rule of thumb: soup/salad….one main course with three side dishes, and dessert.

salads

I would like to end this blog post with a personal story: No Frills comes to my rescue EVERY year around Passover. I save up all my points for that one holiday where my grocery bill is going to be triple what it usually is. I received this “tip” from a friend years ago and have been following her advise every since.  (Thanks D.K)

For more information about the PC Plus Program, please click here.

Twitter Hashtag: #PCPlus

Disclosure: I am a blogger who is participating in a PC Plus No Frills program and have received compensation for my participation. However all opinions are my own. 

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Sep
29

Oh how I love food shows. Today I attended Grocery Innovations  in search of new product that will be hitting the grocery shelves.  I have to admit..I don’t mind receiving samples either! Can you tell?

GIC - samples

This year, I discovered the following new products:

a) Olympic has introduced CHIA Balkan Style Yogurt that is Probiotic with 100% natural ingredients. It’s also Lactose free, Gluten free and Gelatin free. I think..scratch that.I know that this product is going to be HUGELY successful.

GIC - chia

b) Crisco has introduced ONE CUPS STICKS. YAY. For those of you who are occasional bakers – this is BRILLIANT. I swear I have 2 sticks of Crisco in my cupboard that have been there way too long. Now I won’t have that problem anymore.

GIC - crisco

C) SILK has introduced a Creamy Cashew Milk. Seeing as I’m lactose free – all these varieties appeal to me.

GIC - silk

I wondered thru the show for hours (no joke) and will be blogging about other products that intrigued me, so stay tuned.

Happy Grocery Shopping!!

 

 

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Sep
26

There are some people who have 3 complete meals and never snack and there’s other people who have 3 meals and snack throughout the day.  I fit into the latter category.

So when I’m shopping at No Frills, I’m always on the hunt for ingredients for my meals AND my snacks. Not sure if you know this but PC Plus is now available at No Frills (hooray).

In the event you are wondering what’s PC Plus..…here’s your answer: It rewards customers with points toward dollars off your grocery bill. I don’t know about you…but I ALWAYS want to save money on my grocery bills. ALWAYS.

I now have the PC Plus app so it’s super easy for me to see weekly offers and to continue to save money. A Win Win if you ask me!

Here’s what I usually find myself snacking on: 

1. PC GREEK YOGOURT: I usually add some berries (raspberries, blueberries or blackberries) and before you know it …I’ve got myself a nice healthy snack that fills me up. Note: When those berries are out of season, I will use frozen berries.

no frills - yogurt

2. SLICED TOMATOES:  One tomato goes along way. Sometimes I add some avocado on top and other times I add cheese. The end result is a healthy snack that looks oh-so-pretty! (don’t you think?)

no frills - tomatoes

3. SOUP: I know it seems weird but I adore soup and often find myself having a bowl in the middle of the day. It fills me up and it’s not expensive to make at all. Last week I noticed that canned tomatoes were on sale.  Naturally I ran home and made some soup: 1 tin of tomatoes, added 1/2 a boiled potato, a bit of fried onion and whizzed it up in my beloved Blendtec with some water. I had 4 cups of soup for less than $1.50 TOTAL.

no frills - soup

4. Popcorn: To be perfectly honest…I want to snack on chips but it’s really not healthy for you. ARGHH. However popcorn isn’t a bad option. Therefore popcorn (air popped) has become a great alternative that in my opinion is “cheap and cheerful”.

None of the above snacks hurt my bank account and are pretty healthy…wouldn’t you agree?

I really wish I was one of those people that didn’t snack as much but I do. I try to be mindful to make sure that I’m not snacking cause I’m bored but that’s a whole separate blog post!!

The good news: No Frills and PC Plus…. helps me find the right snacks at the right prices! YAY PC Plus points…I love collecting them and love redeeming them too!

Hope you get a chance to sign up for PC plus soon. It’s easy and rewarding…what more could you ask for?

For more information:

Website: www.pcplus.ca

Twitter; #PCPlus

Disclosure: I am a blogger who is participating in a PC Plus No Frills program and have received compensation for my participation. However all opinions are my own.

 

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Sep
22

I was determined to attend the Toronto Garlic Festival despite the POURING RAIN.

garlic - rain

Upon arrival I realized that the rain wasn’t stopping garlic fans from attending as the three parking lots were almost full and it was only 10 am!!

However, the rain stopped and the sunshine came out which meant I could focus on these garlicky treats!!

a) GARLIC COFEE – yes, that’s right…Garlic Coffee. Described as: Warm Garlic Infused Spiced Coffee with Maple Cream and Pumpkin Vanilla Dust. Thank you Incredible Spice for creating this unique cup of java.

garlic - coffee

b) GARLIC Lollipop – oh how I love these creations that mix sweet and savoury.

garlic - lolly

c) BLACK GARLIC BUTTER TARTS – this had my name all over it as butter tarts are one of my weaknesses! Kudos to the good people at Smoked and Cracked. I really hope this will be a regular feature on their menu

garlic - buttertart

d) FRENCH GARLIC APPLE TOAST with Creme Fraiche from Magic Oven. – oh what a combo of flavours. ps did you know that Magic Oven is soon opening on Eglinton Ave W.?

garlic - french toast

Of course I came home with some garlic from Soup Stone Farms and put it to good use…immediately. Please remind me, never to buy garlic from the grocery store again! What a difference.

garlic - soupstone

Congratulations once again to the Toronto Garlic Festival for putting on another well organized and tasty event.

 

 

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Sep
19

Recently I attended the launch of the new Flat White at Second Cup. It was a great excuse to wear white ….AND I love my morning coffee. Kudos to the publicists for encouraging guests to wear white and for having the event at 10 am.!

See how happy I am?

Coffee...Vicky....Happy The new Flat White features more espresso and less steamed milk. I was a fan after my first sip! I could taste the bold flavour and loved the creaminess of the the micro foam.

sign

It’s bold with without being bitter and velvety without using an excess of milk. Of course, I paired it with a beautiful butter tart. …I just couldn’t resist. I now live across the street from Second Cup and know that I will be ordering the Flat White on a regular basis. Sadly the butter tart will only be a treat – once in a while!!

buttertart

PS Look out for this unique Flat White Piaggio truck this weekend at Second Cup at 355 Danforth Avenue on Saturday Sept 20 from 1 to 8 pm and on Sunday Sept 21 from 1 to 8 pm

 

 

truck

For more information:

Second Cup – www.secondcup.com

Twitter: @secondcup

Join the Conversation: #flatwhite  or #espressoloversrejoice

 

 

 

 

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