Autumn seems to be everybody’s favorite season, doesn’t it? We have long Winters here and some of the allure of Autumn, for me anyways, is how fleeting it is before it gives way to the bitter cold. Ugh, I hate the cold. Apart from that, there is something almost ineffable about the beauty of Autumn. The cool, crisp air. The scent of earthiness and wood-burning fires. Leaves in the most splendid array of rich, vibrant colors. ASMR-inducing crunch-crunch-crunch of fallen, dry leaves underfoot. And as for taste, we crave the return of comfort foods after a summer of lighter fare. Foods that feel like a cozy hug for a hungry tummy, like this Lobster and Truffle Oil Mac + Cheese with Crunchy Chickpea Crumbs.Read More
It's mid August which means Toronto is bursting with summer produce. Our local farmer's market is, to me, almost like a candy store to a child. Tables are piled high with an abundance of fresh and colorful fruits and vegetables hitting their peak. I am in heaven! In particular, tomatoes are having their long-awaited moment in the sun, literally and figuratively. :)Read More
Remember when I said cauliflower has superpowers? I still stand by that. Especially after this pretty incredible Cauliflower Steak Salad I made. I've made this dish three times in the past 2 weeks and I have had no regrets about it. Not a one. Actually I do have one regret which is that I'm only discovering Sambal Matah now and not sooner. Such a crying shame!Read More
I made a lip-smacking, finger-licking, killer sandwich! I borrowed the flavors of Korean bulgogi to create this meatless version featuring that quintessential combo of soy sauce, garlic, sesame oil and ginger. Instead of marinaded meat, I've used the bulgogi sauce on tofu and loads of mushrooms, two ingredients that soak up all that tastiness.Read More
"SPRINTER." Urban Dictionary.com: The Canadian season which occurs between Spring and Summer, when Mother Nature forgets that it is supposed to be getting warmer and suddenly reverts to Winter for no apparent reason.
This may sound cheeky and cute but unfortunately, it is tragically true! We are still reeling in disbelief from a massive ice storm last weekend. In the middle of April. APRIL!Read More
This recipe was inspired by our recent trip to Miami, Florida. The hotel we stayed at was beyond gorgeous and the weather was even more so, especially after months living in the tundra known as winter in Toronto. Guys, it was a real difficult winter. So our escape down south was well anticipated. Except it didn't turn out to be the vacation I pictured...Read More
I think there is a certain consensus among those of us who are living through Winter right now that citrus fruits are basically the best part about it. The other features of our winter - air so cold it hurts any exposed skin, shoveling and de-icing all the things all the time, extremities that are always cold even while INDOORS, plus a few other things that make you swear under your breath - I can live without!Read More
'Tis the season for winter squashes! I love the variety of pumpkins and squashes in the markets now - my favorites being pumpkin pie pumpkins (those small round guys), buttercup pumpkin and when lucky enough to find them, kabocha squash aka Japanese pumpkin. Good ol' butternut squash is excellent all year 'round too and is particularly loved by my girls. All of these squash varieties can be used in this recipe. Choose your favorite and the flavor of it will shine through in this simple yet delicious sauce.Read More
Toronto weather can be pretty bipolar. We just had a sudden 10-degree (or 50f) swing from near 30c (86f) back down to more seasonal temperatures. I guess Summer wanted a last hurrah. I was okay with that!
Now that it is Fall, for real, it's time to embrace all the upsides it brings including pumpkin things, crisp air fragranced by wood-burning fires, over-the-knee boots and cozy meals exactly like this Chicken Stew with Almond Flour Biscuits.Read More
With the start of school and adieu to summer vacation, I begin to accept that Fall is just around the corner. Every year when I spot the first copper-y dried leaf fallen on the sidewalk, I think of (lower your device's volume if you're at work haha) this old KFC commercial where the woman is screaming and pointing at something. The camera then turns to the sidewalk in front of her, showing a single fallen maple leaf on the ground with the voice-over saying "summer can't last forever". She then bolts in the other direction. I feel exactly the same way! Does anyone else (Canadian) remember this one? Best. Commercial. Ever. My favorite. :)Read More
Cauliflower has been having quite a moment in the sun.
Have you seen all the clever and creative uses of cauliflower lately? The popular ones that spring to mind are cauliflower steak, cauliflower pizza crust, cauliflower buffalo 'wings', cauliflower tater tots and even using cauliflower as a smoothie ingredient to provide bulk without the added sugars of bananas and other fruits (can't say I'm sold on that one ... yet).
So despite it's pale and unexciting appearance, turns out this cruciferous veggie kinda has superpowers! And cauliflower RICE, for me, is the most super-y-est of them all because of it's ease of preparation (including how much faster it is to cook versus rice), superior nutritional value over rice, it's versatility and above all, how satisfyingly well it stands in for rice.Read More
Hiya! It's been a minute since I posted. How has this month flown by so fast? Oh I remember now. It's because I've had my hands full with the girls who are on summer break. Why even is there a summer vacation? People who work don't get 2 months off their jobs (I mean other than school-related staff). Stay-at-home parents don't stop cooking / dishes / laundry / vacuuming / groceries / chauffeuring and all of that for a couple of months every year. Why do children get 2 months off school? Isn't school basically their job? Seems like a good idea to keep their minds sharp all year round. Maybe next year I will sign the girls up for math camp all summer heh heh. #tigermomgoalsRead More
I am super excited to share this recipe as a follow-up to last week's Everyday Veggie-Loaded Ragu share. For forever, it was a no-brainer to make a lasagna later the same week I make up a big batch of my go-to ragu. I literally don't know a single person who doesn't like lasagna, do you? But when we began limiting dairy and gluten consumption (among other things) at the end of 2016, it seemed our lasagna days were over. Bye bye.
Or so I thought.Read More
Does the internet really need another 'spaghetti sauce' recipe? For a year and half since I started this blog, the answer to myself was consistently NO. Yet here it is. Why?
Instead of seeing it as too pedestrian to be blog-worthy, I now see it as invariably delicious, nourishing and actually an excellent representation of what we eat hence what I like to bring to the blog. A ragù (an Italian term) is a sauce made with ground meat and vegetables usually used for pasta. This is my take on the ubiquitous dish. It is uncomplicated yet deliberate in ingredients to maximize both taste and nutrition. It is beloved in my universe (my family). It is tried, test and true.Read More
If you know my modus operandi, you know I'm all about tasty and healthy meals with minimal effort. People often assume I love to cook (whatever gave them that idea ;)) but the honest truth is, I'm more driven by the end game than the process. My paramount goal has always been to feed my family simple homemade meals created from clean, whole ingredients. That's why I gravitate toward uncomplicated food. Are you anything like me? If so, this recipe is perfect for you too.Read More
The selfish part of me doesn't want to publicly share how ah-mazing beef cheeks are for braising! Beef cheeks are at once lean and tender. When slow cooked or pressure cooked, it is extremely flavorful and yields lusciously to your fork. Or should I say, spoon because that's the utensil to use for this dish. It's how wonderfully tender it is!Read More
When I discovered a package of frozen udon in the freezer, I was delighted. My cravings spoke loudly and decisively. I knew instantly that I wanted to enjoy it in this easy coconut curry noodle bowl. Since we limit grains including wheat these days, we rarely slurp down any noodles (made from wheat) at home anymore. I cherished this bowl of udon with my entire being.Read More
This is one of those one-pot meals that are extremely easy to make and extremely tasty. The magic happens during the last bit of simmering when the starches released from the rice cakes combine with the liquid cooked out of the napa cabbage to create a velvety, luscious sauce. It is satisfying and oh so very delish.Read More
Guess what! I have another awesome mash-up for you. OKONOMIYAKI WRAPS
First of all, what is okonomiyaki? Other than that it's fun to say (rolls off the tongue doesn't it), it is a Japanese savory pancake originating from Osaka, Japan. The pancake batter itself is traditionally flour-and-egg based, with finely shredded cabbage mixed right in. The name itself translates to "grill as you like it", meaning you can adapt it by adding to the pancake batter a variety of different ingredients from veggies (i.e. corn, mushrooms, potatoes) to meats (i.e. pork, beef, chicken) to seafood (i.e. shrimp, squid, fish). When we lived in downtown Toronto, we were lucky to be a 2-minute walking distance from Okonomi House, a small Japanese-run restaurant that specializes in - you guessed it - okonomiyaki. It was there that we discovered this ultra tasty food.Read More
I have been looking forward to sharing this recipe for months...I just had to make it a second time to make doubly sure it was a winner. IT IS. If you know miso's intense brininess and gochujang's savory pungency, then you might hesitate to believe me that using both of these together in this recipe results in a braised pork roast that is deeply flavorful, yet mellow. Wonderfully mellow. Believe.Read More