Category Archives: Food glorious food from the heart and soul
Happy Monday great foodie friends.
The more I see what people consider food (especially the young and young families) the more I realize that we as a society need to get back to the basics.
Don’t get me wrong, fast food every once in a while should be ok but making it the rule vs. the exception begs the term “You are what you eat”.
I fully realize how busy life is and that time is short and a rare comoddity for most families but in some way or another through the generations one could always say the family is busy.
Let’s look at this way, planning and learning are the keys to what I am proposing.
- Stay to the outer 4 walls of the grocery store.
- Watch cooking shows or look through cookbooks and plan out at least 5 meals for the week.
- Go to farmers markets
- A lot of foods or meals freeze well so you can make it ahead.
- Reduce refined sugars, salts and msg loaded seasoning. There are easy recipes to create your own seasoning, sea salts and healthy herbs that will make your foods taste much better.
- Do all of this with your kids!
When you cook with your family it brings us back to our roots. Think about the “family” meal and sitting around the table with friends. It’s what connects us as people and what feeds our soul as well as our bodies.
Teaching the young that hamburgers and French fires are not the healthiest way to eat but rather roasting a fresh chicken and serving it fresh vegetables are the “norm” will pay off for the future.
Please don’t take this as a lecture but rather a friendly nudge to remember to learn where your food comes from. Make things fresh ahead that you can incorporate in your weekly meals (pasta sauce, chicken, beef or vegetable broths) and watch how you reconnect with your family and friends as you sit together, cook together and laugh together.
You gotta try this!
Happy Tuesday great foodie friends. Just an update to a wonderful newer restaurant in our South Surrey community.
My Shanti means “my peace” and that is defined as soon as you enter the door.
The beautiful tapestry filling the main wall tells a story of peace and friendship. Now that you are literally in Chef Vikram’s and Bena’s dining room / living room settle in for a dining experience of a flavor ride thorough India with a twist of having My Shanti and Chefs twist of dishes from yesteryear growing up.
The beginning of your flavor experience starts hours before entering the dining room.
The magic starts in the kitchen where the chefs are creating fan favorites as well as new dishes with a twist and house made from the freshest ingredients possible. Some of the fun is seeing it all beginning from the spice pallet and then what shows up the table to tingle your tastebuds.
My shanti is now open for Lunch Thursday – Sunday and now that the summer weather is settling in the great patio is also now open.
We shouldn’t just “eat” and I think you know what I mean. Rather you should eat real food and take the time to experience the diverse flavors that dance across your mouth and warm your tummy. The measure for me is if I have a great and quality meal made from real food and seasoned with true spices that create flavors rather than the known flavor enhancers that aren’t healthy, and go home not feeling bloated or God forbid guilty then I know I have just had a quality dining experience.
Bena and her team have created a perfect summer lunch menu including this flavor packed Naanwhich – yes I said Naanwhich filled with wild boar, lamb and topped with masala paneer and pickled onions, tomatoes, spinach and mint yogurt and accompanied with cassava fries!
A perfect measure of restaurantuers that care about your experience is coming around your table and truly asking of your are enjoying your dish. You will see either Bena or Vikram walking through the dining room doing just that. Taking the time to honor those who grace your doors is something that we deserve! We work hard for our dollar so shouldn’t you enjoy what you spend it on, and feel let alone be appreciated by the restaurant? That is what you can expect at My Shanti.
Let’s get out and enjoy the summer and support our great new restaurants in our community!
This is my first write up in what will be a series or short posts celebrating the restaurants on the South Surrey / White Rock Peninsula. We are so fortunate in the lowermainland with top restaurants and fantastic chefs, we also should not forget that many of them have looked and our community and come to feed us!
You gotta try this!
My opinion is my own and Soley based on my experiences. This review was not previewed by the restaurant nor influenced by anyone other than me.
First I wanted to thank you for following Bcfoodieblogger and wish the happiest New Years and a healthy and prosporous 2016!
I just wanted to share this posting from Food Network and Google. Some recipes make sense that they were the most searched and some didn’t make as much sense but then we really must think about worldwide culinary thoughts and not just our little but most delicious culinary dinseyland called Vancouver and the Lowermainland.
Most googled recipes in 2015 -click here
What were the most-searched recipes on Google this year? The powerful search engine has unveiled the results of the top 10 recipes that users have been searching for. You may be surprised by the results — and you’d never guess what tops the list as 2015’s most-Googled recipe!
1. Apple Roses
Google users were obsessed with this year’s most-searched recipe, in which thin apple slices are arranged to resemble the petals of a rose within puff pastry, and then baked to golden-brown perfection to result in a delicate, delicious dessert that looks far more complicated than it actually is.
Rice Krispie squares remain an easy-to-make, kid-friendly treat, so it shouldn’t be surprising that recipes for this popular snack were Google’s #2 search in 2015, with the Internet serving up a nearly endless supply of variations. Among them, this spectacular version that adds peanut butter and chocolate to the mix.
Don’t try to figure out why the third most popular Google search was for Osso Bucco recipes, as this iconic Italian dish is apparently more popular than ever. In this recipe, Chef Ricardo Larrivée gussies up this classic favourite by adding the sweetness of orange and prunes.
Everybody loves a bowl of hearty chili, and Internet users searched up a storm looking for recipes. If you’re looking to cook up a pot of zesty chili, you won’t go wrong with this spicy and savoury recipe from Bobby Flay.
Get the recipe for Bobby Flay’s Red Beef Chili.
Hollandaise sauce is apparently making a comeback, judging by its status according to Google searches, and Chef Michael Smith offers up his version of this creamy classic, which he uses to top gently steamed asparagus.
Get the recipe for Michael Smith’s Asparagus Hollandaise.
Puffed wheat squares are a kid-approved favourite that don’t require a whole lot of effort to make, and Google has numerous recipes to provide such as this easy-to-follow recipe.
Get the recipe for Puffed Wheat Squares.
7. Spaghetti Bolognese
One of the most iconic Italian pasta dishes out there, spaghetti Bolognese is a hearty crowd-pleaser that is always welcome on the dinner table. No need to Google when you can use this authentic Bolognese recipe from Chuck Hughes.
Get the recipe for Chuck Hughes’ Bolognese.
Following in the tradition of beer can chicken, the latest beer can barbecue craze involves pressing an aluminum can into a huge, baseball-sized sphere of ground meat (a half-pound or more), with the resulting indentation used as a vessel to stuff cheese, bacon or whatever toppings you like before grilling it up.
Get the recipe for Smoked Beer Can Burgers.
Lasagna remains a go-to staple for busy families, a casserole-like pasta dish that everyone loves and, as a bonus, can be prepared ahead of time and then heated up for dinner. If anyone knows a thing or two about cooking an amazing lasagna, it’s Giada de Laurentiis, who adds the rich, sweet flavour of butternut squash to her recipe.
Get the recipe for Giada de Laurentiis’ Butternut Squash Lasagna.
10. Mashed Potatoes
It seems as if 2015 was the year that everybody wanted to spice up their mashed potatoes, whether it was for Thanksgiving or simply to serve up a more creative version of this popular side. In this recipe, Ree Drummond gets back to the basics with her creamy, whipped version of savoury spuds.
Get the recipe for Ree Drummond’s Creamy Mashed Potatoes.
Make 2016 a year when you challenge yourself in the kitchen to try new recipes, make them your own and share a meal with family and friends. Remember that the Kitchen table is where we sit and share and is the second heart and soul of the home to your mothers. Sharing a meal connects us and helps us bond, and it has been that way since the beginning of time.
Have fun tonight, enjoy your transition from 2015 to 2016 and stay safe…find a ride home if you need to and wake up tomorrow with a refreshed outlook on the start of a new year.
Thank you again for following my blog and I hope to bring you more reasons to continue next year. Anyone interested in a new “E-cookbook”?
When life hands you ham hock, make split pea soup. What truly motivates me was the memory of my moms split pea and ham hock soup – I can taste it as I write. The melencoly thoughts of missing my mom soften when I bring her culinary soul back into the kitchen.
What you will need:
2 cups dried split peas
*approx 1/2 cup of carrots finely chopped
*approx 1/2 cup of celery finely chopped
1 cup of onion finley diced
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp of pepper
1/4 tsp of salt (I use sea salt)
1 tsp fresh Tyme chopped
2 tsp of minced garlic
1/8 to 1/4 tsp of chili flakes
1 ham hock
1 1/3 cups (approx) diced ham
7 cups of water and 1 cup of chicken broth
What you will do:
In a large pot place the 7 cups of water and 1 cup of chicken broth along with the peas.
Bring to a boil and the turn of and cover and let stand for 1 1/2 hours.
In another pot place your ham hock in and cover it with water. Bring it to a boil on medium high heat and then reduce to a simmer for approx 1 hour. Once it is done drain the water and put your ham hock aside.
In a deep pot start to melt the butter and then put in the onions and stir until they soften (approx 2 mins). Now add in the carrots and celery and sauté until softened (approx 3 more mins)
Now add in the salt, pepper and chili flakes as well as the diced ham and hock- stir occasionally while the ham starts to brown (deepens the flavor)
Now add in the peas separated from the liquid and stir. Then and in the liquid and stir. Bring the pot to a medium simmer and stir occasionally. You want the peas to get tender if not mushy. (One step if you like a smoother soup is the not put in the diced ham but add after you purée the soup)
You can adjust the thickness of the soup by adding water or broth to the consitentcy that you like.
Remove the ham hock and bay leaf and top with your favorite adder (croutons, crackers, Parmigina)
Heartwarming, thanks mom for the inspiration.
“You gotta try this!”
Research | Foodies more satisfied with their lives
December 9, 2015Tagged: All News, Faculty, Press Release, Research
Thank you Sauder and Yann Cornil and Pierre Chandon for the enlightening view on eating for the right reasons.
The researchers also found that having a deeper appreciation doesn’t lead to extra pounds, finding there is no correlation between idealizing food and above-average body mass.
“Here in North America, we’re in a society that considers food to be the new tobacco – and that’s the wrong approach,” said Assistant Professor Yann Cornil, the lead author of the study. “Eating pleasure does not need to be the enemy of a healthy lifestyle. Instead, we should help people appreciate all that’s beautiful about food, and build up more of a food culture.”
Cornil and his co-author defined eating pleasure as being either epicurean – the full sensory experience – or visceral – satisfying an impulse . The pair surveyed people to determine how they enjoyed food, and then surveyed them about their general well-being and tendencies to overeat. They compared this data with body mass index of the participants.
Epicureans scored higher on well-being, had less interest in large servings and were equally distributed across the body mass index. The researchers also found epicureans can’t be stereotyped, as they were evenly distributed across age, income and education levels.
Cornil says his findings could inform public health campaigns that too often demonize rich or fatty foods as leading to high rates of obesity and diabetes.
“Loving food doesn’t mean you’re going to eat too much of it – it depends on the kind of pleasure you derive from it,” he said.
“If you eat to satisfy your impulses, then you’re more likely to overindulge and eat large portions mindlessly. But if we teach people to appreciate food for its aesthetics, its symbolism and its rich flavours, then their first bite will the best one, and they’ll be more likely to choose smaller portions.”
The study, “Pleasure as an ally of healthy eating? Contrasting visceral and Epicurean eating pleasure and their association with portion size preferences and wellbeing,” by Yann Cornil and Pierre Chandon, is forthcoming in the journal Appetite.
Link – click here to go directly to the Sauder posting
If you want to know some other great foodies to follow and watch please let me know what region that you live in and I would be pleased to pass on some of the top foodies to help suggest some great spots to eat or for some great suggestions for some wow recipes to try!
You Gotta see This!
Happy Friday great foodie friends.
As fall arrives so does the memories of comfort foods & fall flavors. From savory soups, braised ribs and of course filled pastas.
Today we look at a perfect heartwarming filled shell pasta!
Makes 24 stuffed shells
1-16 oz box jumbo shell pasta
Your favorite tomato pasta sauce
2 – 15 oz containers ricotta cheese
14 oz can artichoke hearts, drained and rustically chopped.
1/2 lb lean browned ground beef (I also love to use ground veal mixed in with my ground beef, it makes it extra rich and flavorful)
1 cup diced red or sweet onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
8 oz shredded fresh mozzarella cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons dry parsley flakes
1 large egg, slightly beaten
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
Mix the ricotta, egg, salt, pepper and parsley in a large bowl.
Fold in the artichoke pieces and 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese.
Boil the jumbo pasta shells following the directions on the box. Drain well and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
Now mix the ricotta mixture with the cooled ground beef and set aside.
Spread 1 cup of sauce into the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish.
Repeat until you run out of ricotta/beef mixture.
Spread the remaining sauce over the top of the stuffed pasta shells.
** A little added fun! Make your favorite garlic parm cream sauce and drizzle over the top as well for some added flavor!
Bake in a preheated 375-degree oven for about 40-45 minutes or until the ricotta filling is heated through and the sauce is bubbling.
Remove baking dish from the oven and sprinkle 1 to 1/2 cups of the remaining shredded mozzarella cheese over the top of the shells and dust with Parmigina cheese.
Serve this perfect fall dinner with your favorite garlic bread and salad and maybe even the perfect sip of vino.
You Gotta Try This!
Happy Monday Fellow foodie friends,
I truly can’t believe that this blog has taken me so long to post!
I truly recommend that you get down to Fable Kitchen and try what is sure to be one of those happy shuddering culinary moments for you!
As I have mentioned before we are so very fortunate to have a culinary disneyland unfolding more and more each day in the Vancouver lower mainland. Trevor Bird – one of Top Chef Canada’s top competitors opened Fable in approx April 2012.
The restaurant is is the perfect size and laid out in a comfortable way for you to enjoy food and drinks with friends or co-workers as well as a nice romantic dinner with your love.
If you are fortunate enough to be able to sit at the “chefs wood” then you are in for a treat.
Whether you see Chef Trevor Bird or any of his team commanding the kitchen you will see the workings of a well oiled (olive probably) kitchen machine.
You will watch the Culinary magical fun unfold right in front of you. There is a definite order to what happens from the start right to when the plate is set to come to your waiting a eyes and taste buds. I saw every plate inspected and quality checked and siting for no longer than maybe a minute before it was lovingly delivered for your enjoyment.
I was lucky enough to visit Fable a few times and happily waited for the chefs wood.
First up, was “canned tuna“. Don’t be fooled or timid about what you see on the menu. Trust your waiter or chef recommendations, you won’t be disappointed.
Another fantastic appetizer was the halibut collar lettuce wrap
If they were out of collars, it was halibut cheeks up next. This magical twist on lettuce wraps was truly a culinary tantalizer of an appy!
Next up was the Steak Frites
Triple cooked potatoes, mushroom, broccolini
for $24. It was perfectly cooked to order and melt in your mouth tender served over And unbelievably mouth tantalizing black Pepper Jam- (buy some to take home, you won’t regret it I promise)
If the flavor a that just danced across our taste buds weren’t enough it was now time for desert! Yes desert but “must try” unique offering.
Yes a campfire special but done Fable style with house made brownie and marshmallows- delectably and perfectly rich.
Lemon Meringue pie-
Also Fable style- a perfect balance of creamy lemon, crumble and toasted Mirengue.
Thank you Fable & Chef Trevor Bird for a great all around experience.
My opinion is my own and Always a reflection of my own experience and tastes. It is always meant to share my true reflections and meant with respect.
You Gotta Try This!
Richmond Station – Tornonto
Happy Friday great foodie friends-
My travels took me to Toronto which finally offered me the chance to try Richmond Station and meet Chef Heinrich – Top Chef Canada season 2 champ.
Richmond station is located in the heart of bustling Toronto across the street from the iconic and one of the oldest building in Canada The Hudsons Bay.
We opted for the Chefs Table as well as the Chefs tasting menu.
Chef Heinrich takes the time to great regulars and new diners alike and has almost a shy humble demeanor but extremely welcoming and friendly. You can definitely see that he has created a great team that are all bought in to his culture and demand for high quality and top notch ingredients.
The tasting menu started with Oysters on the half shell-
The fresh oysters were served with fresh grated horseradish, lemon and housemade cocktail sauce, hot sauce and some sort of Apple vinegar type sauce that was unique and very tasty.
Next up was Charcuterie – a perfectly cured selection of housemade meats accompanied by preserves and pickled treats. Served with the charcuterie was housemade bread and a delectable mix of Oil and vinegar for dipping
sliced lardo, bistro greens, pesto aioli, green goddess dressing. I have to admit that I don’t usually like radishes but when the magical talents of a culinary master transform ingredients to the next level I found myself wanting more!
This fresh and lively salad was served with fresh grilled bread with lardon making the bread beyond tasty.
Next served was a perfect little bite of BULGOGI STEAK TARTARE
Served on wonton chips with pear, ginger & radish.
Next we had Slow cooked Rock Fish- the fish was perfectly cooked and uniquely prepared Sous Vide served with pommes purée, mushrooms, summer sausage and red wine beef jus.
Our final dish for the savory portion of our tasting menu was Lamb done two ways and Beef short rib burger
The lamb was masterfully cooked and prepared in two different cuts. One was delecate and tender and the second cut was the belly and sinfully good. The lamb was served with a purée and accompanied with what also seemed like the red wine beef jus.
Did I mention that we added the wine pairing ? We did and the best part of it was that your taken on a sipping journey that is masterfully paired with your culinary journey.
To finish off the meal with had light sweet treat. Black Chocolate pudding and White Chocolate pudding.
Served with fennel, coffee cake, mint jelly, pernod meringue, cocoa nib crumble, chocolate ice cream.
A nice sweet treat to end a perfect tasting meal.
Toronto is very similar to Vancouver when referring to how many fantastic new restaurants pepper the cities with unbelievably talented chefs. Chef Carl Heinrich and his team create a very comfortable spot to eat with friends, business dinners or just a great meal with your sweetie. The style of cooking makes me think of similar to a farm to table theory where you can tell Chef prides his creations by sourcing local quality ingredients as well as supporting the local wine industry.
This eatery really is lead by a Top Chef Canada contestant – the winner in this case. No matter how high having accolade associated with your name is as well as the perception and expectation of your customers may already be…. Richmond station shine through in my opinion.
The passion from the culinary soul shines through as you see Carl coordinate and looks over every dish leaving the kitchen!
You Gotta try This!
Happy Thursday great Foodie friends,
Please find the media announcement from Global group via Serena PR regarding Chef Jamea Olberg joining the Glowbal Group.
Glowbal Restaurant Group Announces James Olberg as New Culinary Director and Executive Chef at
An accomplished culinary talent, Olberg brings years of experience to the table. His career has spanned more than two decades and includes positions held in kitchens across the country: The King Edward Hotel (Toronto); Sheraton Red Deer Hotel (Red Deer, AB); Queen Landing Hotel (Niagara-on-the-Lake), and La Société, a French bistro in downtown Toronto.
Active in the Canadian Culinary Federation (CCFCC), Olberg’s knowledge and creativity have earned him multiple medals at culinary competitions. As a member of Culinary Team Canada, Olberg earned four silver medals in the Bocuse d’Or, the most prestigious international professional cooking competition in the world. In 2017, Olberg will once again join Culinary Team Canada in the Bocuse d’Or, held in Lyon, France.
“It’s great to be back working with Glowbal Group in beautiful Vancouver,” says Chef Olberg. “What I’m most excited about are the region’s raw materials, especially its fabulous fish and seafood that have always inspired my cooking.”
“We are thrilled to welcome James back to the Glowbal family,” says Emad Yacoub, Proprietor of Glowbal Restaurant Group. “Highly skilled and graceful under pressure, he brings a wealth of experience to COAST. We are proud to be working with him again.”
Olberg will take over culinary operations at COAST from Pedro Gonzalez, the current Executive Chef. Gonzalez is leaving his COAST post to lead the kitchen brigade at the new Glowbal Grill, opening this summer at TELUS Garden.
About Glowbal Restaurant Group
Glowbal Restaurant Group is comprised of 10 restaurants: Glowbal Grill (opening 2015 at TELUS Garden), COAST Restaurant, Italian Kitchen, Trattoria Kitsilano, Society, Black+Blue, The Fish Shack, The Roof, Trattoria Park Royal and Trattoria Burnaby; and NOSH, the Group’s newest concept. The energy, bustle and allure of these celebrated Vancouver restaurants are what most people notice first. In addition, flawless service, exquisite wine lists, and some of the most inventive, celebrated cuisine in Vancouver define every restaurant in the collection.
Aloha great Foodie friends,
A little gem hidden in paradise was what we found last night. From the moment you enter the views and atmosphere fill your eyes.
Merriman’s: One Bay Club Place, Lahina, Hawaii
Don’t make the mistake of driving to Lahina proper as this gem is in the other direction in Kapalua.
The handcrafted drinks are a great surprise along the lines of a “Speakeasy” cocktail truly made from scratch and the difference is noticeable.
Merriman’s Mai Tai- El Dorado rum, fresh lime, orange curaçao and lilikoi foam (a passion fruit foam) try the foam before you mix it in the drink then blend all the flavors together- delectable!
Parmesan truffle fries – the perfect starter to have with your handcrafted sips- a perfect blend of flavors and truffle used the right way…not overpowering.
Next up was the entrees.
USDA Prime grade Fillet of Beef (GF)- a perfectly grilled medium rare with pefect char, garlic whipped potatoes, kula green beans, Savoy cabbage topped with mustard brown butter emulsion.
The perfect bites always exist when flavor depth and textures meet. Every bite of this delectable dish was filled with flavor leaving you wanting for the next bite.
Lamb- I am going based on memory for all that was on this plate, but truly it was definitely a culinary wow in my books.
The lamb was “SousVide” (this is a method of cooking in an airtight plastic bag and placed in a low temprature controlled water bath) then finished to a perfect medium rare – medium (as requested) on the grill. Served with jalepeno whipped potateos, perfectly cooked kula green beans, creamed corn and what seemed to be a fresh salsa.
Every bite touched a different taste bud if that’s possible. Well done!
Dinner was served with a perfect sip of Heidi Schrock Austrian rose.
To finish off our Hawaiin themed dinner was:
Maui Gold Pinneapple and toasted macadamia nut bread pudding-
A perfect blend of Hawaiin flavors coupled with a traditional comfort food dessert topped with rum sauce and Haupia (coconut) icecream. Delectable!
You Gotta Try This!
My reviews are only my opinions based on my own observations and experiences. I always judge each outing on its own merits or lack thereof. With rare exceptions, I endeavor to keep criticisms respectful and objective. Anyone’s opinions may vary. It is my hope that you will find my comments helpful.”
<a href=”http://www.urbanspoon.com/r/37/1420090/restaurant/Hawaii/Kapalua/Merrimans-Lahaina”><img alt=”Merriman’s on Urbanspoon” src=”http://www.urbanspoon.com/b/link/1420090/biglink.gif” style=”border:none;width:200px;height:146px” /></a>