Posts Tagged ‘Cheese’


Grocery Innovations Canada (GIC) is Canada’s National Grocery Show and as always I was walking thru the aisles looking for new products. (my favourite hobby).

This show has 110,000 square feet of dedicated space focused on products, beer and wine too! I was one happy blogger.

Here’s a few items that caught my attention:

  1. Burnbrae Farms introduced Flavoured Eggs2go and I was super EGGcited about these new flavours (Dill, Teriyaki, Hot Sauce and Salt & Pepper). I’m all about flavour so this concept really appealed to me.

2. Kraft introduced THICK cheese slices (that are also flavoured). Go figure that we have lasted decades with thin cheese slices and finally someone thought of this genius idea! Something tells me that my grilled cheese sandwich is going to be kicked up a notch.3. MapleFarms  introduced O’Rice that looks like rice but it was 100 percent Canadian Oats. I loved the texture and would definitely buy this. Not to mention its’ super healthy. #winnowing4. Heinz is about to introduce these three new sauces. I sampled the garlic Aioli with a french fry and was impressed. I will definitely be buying this when it hits the shelves.5. That Dam Tea is another Canadian product that caught my eye. DAM stands for Damiana which is used to relieve tension, calm anxiety and improve blood flow. Happy to support a delicious product that is created by a young entrepreneur from Peterborough.6. Astro introduced these two yogurts (a Parfait with fruit at the bottom and Whipped Greek Yogurt). I brought them home for my mom to try and she gave both of them a thumbs up!!

7. Thornloe cheese introduced grass fed cheese. Love it. FYI – Thornloe Cheese has produced a respected brand of cheese products in Northern Ontario for over 71 years!

Not only was I well fed at the show but visitors to the show had to opportunity to get their photo on a bottle of Heinz Ketchup.  #fun

Looking forward to GIC 2018!!

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Its that time of year where there’s a lot of entertaining going on. So I thought it might be useful to share two recipes for you.

The first recipe is ideal for breakfast or a brunch. I discovered it while flipping through a RICARDO magazine and thought “hmm..this sounds interesting AND easy”.  I tried it and it worked!! In the event you have never heard of Ricardo before, he is a well known media personality in Quebec who launched an English version of his magazine in 2014.

Basically all you need is some cheddar cheese (I used St.-Albert cheddar of course), Wonder Bread and a waffle maker (I used my beloved Breville Waffle Maker)


Place one piece of buttered Wonderbread onto the waffle maker (buttered side facing down), place some cheese on top, place another piece of buttered Wonderbread on top (buttered side facing up)…close the waffle maker for a few minutes and bingo you have these delicious Cheese Waffle Sandwiches (with NO MESS).


The second recipe is ideal for an appetizer for a party.

This Cheesy Spinach Artichoke Bread Dip Ring is once again super easy to make and delicious.

The entire recipe can be found on this video. 

But here’s a recap in case you don’t want to watch the video!!

Basically you take pizza dough and make golf sized balls. Place these balls in a greased, oven-proof dish. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes.

Mix in a bowl: sour cream, cream cheese, parmesan cheese, drained artichoke hearts, drained frozen spinach, garlic powder, salt and pepper

Place the spinach mixture into the centre of the oven-proof dish. Brush dough with an egg wash.


Bake at 350 F for 20 minutes. VOILA – delish appetizer


Happy Holidays!


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I’d like to take a bet that it would be hard to find someone who doesn’t like macaroni and cheese. It’s comfort food at it’s best.

Plus it’s easy to make. I think it was probably the first thing I learned to make on my own when I was a teenager coming home at lunch time!!

These days, Italpasta has introduced a macaroni and cheese that has 100 percent Canadian wheat and real Canadian cheese. Added bonus: No artificial flavours, colours or preservatives. I’m all too happy to support this concept of using Canadian ingredients. Wouldn’t you agree?


The other night I made macaroni and cheese and brought it to another level of yummy-ness.

Heres’ four secret ingredients: (which clearly aren’t a secret anymore{

  1. Add 5% cream instead of milk. What a difference. (or use both!!)
  2. Add panko and more grated cheese on top of the mac and cheese and bake in the oven for 10 minutes
  3. Add a touch of cream cheese.

Bingo, you will have a freakin’ delicious macaroni and cheese to serve.


Trust me. Everyone will be digging into this dish.

Another tip I received on facebook when I posted the above photo included:

-try making the mac and cheese in a slow cooker. Apparently it comes out really really creamy. (which I’ve never done before)

The other tip I would like to share is that this dish freezes beautifully. This means, I always make a big batch and then freeze it for those nights when I come home and I’m too tired to cook (you know what I mean, right?)

Happy Cooking!

For more information:

Disclosure: I was compensated for this blog post however all opinions are my own.



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I’m a huge fan of serving appetizers before a meal. There’s something about putting it all together that really appeals to me.

My appetizer plate usually includes olives, cheese, roasted garlic, dried fruit and whatever else I have hanging around the fridge.

tapas - round 2

However recently I’ve discovered Espuna Tapas Essentials that have elevated my cheese board to another level. There’s a huge range of products and you will find them at major retailers like Metro and Longs.

ps see the package in the middle – I often snack on them in the middle of the day. #goodsnacktoo
tapas - product

Now my cheese platter looks like this!

tapas - round

Along with appetizers, of course there has to be an aperitif. Lately I’ve been enjoying the Aperol Spritz which has been described as “THE drink of the summer”. This aperitif is widely available at the LCBO for $26.55 , and had its own cocktail recipe book come out this year called “Spritz: Italy’s Most iconic Aperitivo Cocktail” by Talia Baiocchi and Leslie Pariseau.

tapas - aperolTo make this lovely cocktail you need:

3 parts Cinzano Prosecco

2 parts Aperol

1 splash Soda.

Start by adding ice to a glass, then pour the Prosecco, the Aperol and a splash of soda. Top with an orange (oops I forgot this step).

Happy Entertaining!!

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I like celebrating so I decided to celebrate my birthday the entire week.

Here’s how I celebrated:

Saturday: I went to Bruce Mill’s for one of my all time favourite activities that I have been attending since I was a child. Best pancake experience ever!

birthday - bruce

Sunday: I can’t remember. (this is what happens when you are about to turn 51)

Monday: Had some gal pals over for sushi. I used this 4 ft wooden serving board that I recently purchased at Farmhouse Artisan Cheese(345 Kerr St. Oakville). What a great purchase and what a fun night!

birthday - gals

Tuesday: Went out for dinner to a newly opened restaurant/lounge called Entice (1036 Queen St W). The decor was inviting, the food was flavourful and beautifully plated. I liked the whole vibe of this restaurant – especially the bar. I’ve never seen anything like it before and it really made an impression on me.

birthday - entice

Take a peek at this video which will give you an idea about the cool bar top.

Wednesday: Went to the Giant Tiger #SharetheSecret event and truly had a blast. This event thought of everything. Not to mention, I was able to go home with the cutest shoes.

birthday - giant

Thursday: Birthday drinks at Bar RavalMy friend knows me well!

Friday: Weekend getaway to Niagara Falls! When I checked into my gorgeous room at the Sheraton on the Falls and looked at the view, I said to myself “why have I not done this before”. Believe it or not, I’ve never stayed overnight in Niagara Falls before, so this was a real treat. Plus the inner child in me, had a blast in their massive arcade.

birthday - view

I did some research on line before heading to Niagara Falls and Taps on Queen Brewhouse and Grill appealed to me. (4680 Queen St, Niagara Falls) Any menu that has deep fried pickles and vegetable curry poutine has my attention. Not to mention they serve beer and I’m a huge fan of that refreshment. I also liked this restaurant as they had vegan options and vegetarian options as well.

birthday - taps

Saturday: April 2nd is my official birthday and naturally my celebrations included a wonderful massage at the Chistienne Fallsview Spa in the hotel, a beautiful cheese plate at the Niagara Brewing Co. and dinner at IHOP. What a great combo of activities, don’t you think? By the way, my dinner at IHOP was really special for me as it brought back so many childhood memories. I didn’t hold back and ordered from the kids menu!

birthday - saturday

My birthday week is now behind me. Now I can relax. LOL

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This year, I didn’t attend the Restaurants Canada Show as media but was actually working at a booth at the show.

On my break, I had the chance to roam around and discover some new products.

Well to be honest, I didn’t have to leave my my booth to discover a new product. You see, St.-Albert has recently produced a new cheese to the market 1894 which is the year St. Albert Cheese was established. It’s a soft rind cheese that has been aged for 60 days and it’s Yummy…with a capital Y. We truly had excellent feedback from the many trade show attendees who sampled this cheese.

restaurant - 1897
2. Kelvin Slush Co. has introduced a new ORGANIC margarita mix. I would definitely order this in a restaurant over a sweet, chemicall-y margarita. Congratulations to the team of great guys, (who are also behind Walter Caesar) for this innovative product.

restaurants - kelvin

3. Cow’s Creamery has introduced a new Salted Cultured Butter. As you know Im a huge fan of butter. Heres’ a story for you. I grew up with margarine and soon as I started to live on my own I started to use butter and have not looked back. I love using butter when I bake and totally would spend extra $$ to spread a better quality butter on a better quality piece of delicious bread!!

restaurant - sea salt

4. Station Cold Brew  has launched Nitro! I found this explanation about Nitro on twitter, which will explain to you more about this new beverage.
@stationcoldbrew Surely you’re asking yourself “What the heck is Nitro Cold Brew?” Well, we’ll tell ya. Our Signature brew infused with Nitrogen. We do it because it pours a beautifully cascading coffee reminiscent of a stout. An unrivaled texture and mouth feel. #NITRO #COLDBREW #fuelup
restaurant - nitra

As always, I have a ton of fun at these shows.

Have a great weekend.


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I seriously don’t know why it took me so long to have a cheese fondue party! I guess it’s because I didn’t own a fondue pot till recently. I actually picked it up at Real Canadian Superstore for $5. What a score!!

fondue - pot

Then I discovered this product (PC Swiss Fondue) which makes throwing a Cheese Fondue Party even easier. Oh how I love PC Products!

fondue - cheese

Other items I served included:

-fresh fruit (raspberries, blackberries, and grapes)

-fresh vegetables (cauliflower and carrots)

-phyllo cups with goat cheese, sundried tomatoes and roasted garlic…drizzled with a balsamic reduction

-a variety of olives

-nuts that I picked up  on my last trip to Ottawa (lemon almonds, smoked almonds and cinnamon walnuts)

-a cheese tray with Beemster and Empire Cheddar with Mustard Seeds that I picked up at the Delicious Show).

PC Holiday Treats such as The Decadent Chocolate Cake and Candy Cane Chocolate Squares.

fondue - PC

Smoked Parmesan Inferno Dip Mix. #YUM

-wine (white and red) and of course I showed off my new Soda Stream too!

The table looked like this!

fondue - table

I can guarantee you that I will be hosting another Cheese Fondue Party over the holidays. It’s a great way to entertain!

Disclosure: Several items that I served were provided to me, however all my opinions are my own.




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I’ve been eating Pasta with Burnt Butter and Mizithra Cheese at the Old Spaghetti Factory for almost four decades (see blog post here). I’ve never made it before it as Mizithra cheese is an ingredient that I don’t often come across. But when I saw it at the Global Cheese Shop in Kensington Market (78 Augusta), I knew I had to buy it so I could make this recipe:

pasta - cheese





Mizithra Cheese


To make the brown butter: Cut the butter into tablespoon sized pieces and place in a 2 quart sauce pan and put on a medium heat. Bring butter to a slow boil (about 5 minutes)/

Once the butter begins to boil, stir constantly to prevent residue from sticking to the bottom of the pan. As the butter cooks, it will start to foam and rise. Continue stirring..otherwise the butter foam could overflow and catch fire!

Turn off the heat and remove pan from the burner. Let the sediment settle to the bottom of the pan for a few minutes. Then pour the brown butter thru a strainer and into a small bowl. (this is an important step)

The butter will look like this!

pasta - butter

Boil the pasta of your choice.

Spread the cheese over the pasta and top with hot brown butter.


pasta - final

Happy Cooking!

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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!


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


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!!


Please feel free to share your favourite comfort foods!!

For more information:

No Frills

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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I drove into Ottawa on Saturday at 7 pm and left on Monday at 8 am. This means that I had a lot to do in a short period of time. Guess what? Mission Accomplished. I checked out 4 new places. Here’s what I discovered:

a) Bread by Us…this new bakery is only 6 months old and is already a hit in the neighbourhood.  I had a lovely chat with the owners and enjoyed my coffee with a white chocolate strawberry scone . Next time, I really need to buy a loaf of bread.  Kind of kicking myself that I walked away empty handed.


b) La Trappe a Fromage: I have NO idea why I’ve never been to this store before. It’s only a 15 min drive from downtown Ottawa and WELL WORTH THE DRIVE. There’s a massive variety of Quebec beer and a massive variety of Quebec cheese too. This is now going to be a store that I’m going to visit on a more regular basis.


c) Beyond the Pale Brewing Company:  I drove by this place in the morning but it was closed and then returned in the afternoon. I’m so glad that I did. What a discovery. I had 3 samples and then chose one to bring back to Toronto. This little brewery is soon to be expanding as there’s a HUGE demand for their beer. Very happy for them.


c) Salt.…this restaurant only opened 2 weeks ago! I’m not sure what I should write about first…the space or the food. Both are outstanding. In fact I can’t think of a restaurant in Ottawa that has paid this much attention to the space! The owners wanted to create a restaurant that is open late at night (i.e the kitchen is open till 2am) and where live music is played. As for the food – everything is made in house (the jam, the mustard, etc) and both dishes that we had were well executed and plated to perfection.

salt - food

For more information

Bread By Us: 1065 Wellington St. W, Ottawa (613) 422 5300 Twitter: @BreadByUs

Beyond the Pale Brewing Company: 5 Hamilton Ave. N, Ottawa, (613) 695 2991 Twitter: @BeyondThePale

La Trappe a Fromage: several locations…I went to 114 Blvd Saint-Raymond, Gatineau Quebec

Salt 345 Preston St. Ottawa  (613) 695 5755. Twitter: @SaltOttawa


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