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Everything posted by *Deborah*

  1. Lyle, I've had my "Mr. Wolf" (48 in., same configuration as yours) for about 3 months now, and while it's been summer and I haven't been doing ALL that much cooking, I'm perfectly happy about it. I haven't used more than three burners at once, I think, but I like that I can space them out, and not be all crowded. The only trouble I've had with cleaning is the grill...I think there is probably a product of some sort (maybe even as simple as steel wool and elbow grease ) that will bring it back to silver-coloured, but I haven't really investigated yet and consider the blackening as a badge of honour. Also, be careful when removing and replacing the grill cover, and when you have that in the sink; I sliced the back of a finger pretty significantly. I love that it's so easy to take apart to clean, and find it's actually easier to keep clean than my old Whirlpool gas stove, which had an enamel top that showed everything at least as much as the stainless, and a glass strip where the controls were which was not at all easy to disassemble and degrease. The other day I grilled up a steak and vegetables for dinner in 10 minutes flat or whatever, and was ridiculously pleased with myself, and Mr Wolf. My baking has been good, too, and the convection-roasted chicken I made was the BOMB.
  2. Perhaps they were romano beans? I had some of these fresh from a farm, with homemade walnut mayonnaise and crunchy sea salt awhile ago and they were just spectacular. Thanks for another great description of what sounds to be a delicious meal! ← From the google images, I think that may be the bean. Thanks!
  3. Yes, yes, yes! hot and cold, sweet and salty. Vinegar mostly Ketchup often (Heinz, please. Did you know that Canadian Heinz has more vinegar than American Heinz? it does at McDonald's, at least. I prefer the more vinegary one, how much of a target market am I ) Mayo when I can. The Hellman's squeeze bottle in my fridge has a picture of fries on it, which is just torture as I don't make fries at home.
  4. I heard a lot of scary stories about the tomato season this year, but I've had some great ones. Edited for typo.
  5. In the middle of a long weekend of Vespa madness, I squeezed in a dinner at Parkside. I started with a Parkside Bellini, ooh, how good is that? roasted apricot sorbet, white rum, pomegranate syrup, Prosecco and peach juice. I think I just might survive the seasonal lack of the Blood Orange Negroni if I have this to tide me over. We had a bottle of Ridge Three Valleys Zinfandel, v dry and peppery, a little hot, easy to drink. I should know, I drank most of it My dad and I lucked out and got another heirloom tomato salad, this one with Buffalo mozzarella and the most thinly-sliced red onions ever, with olive oil and fleur de sel. There were red, green, purple, yellow and orange tomatoes, and it’s really interesting to see how the flavours differ from one to another. The kitchen can’t seem to resist spoiling us even when there’s no particular occasion, and we sampled a “gnocchi ragout” which was panfried heavenly little gnocchi with some cut broad green beans (? not sure what these are called), fresh peas, corn, and tomato, IIRC, with some arugula, my dad guessed, to provide a counterpoint to the lovely sweet vegetables. For mains, we couldn’t resist the special, a crispy-skinned Cornish game hen with my new favourite, Sauce Colbert. The hen was on a bed of creamed spinach (which my dad remarked had absolutely no relationship to any creamed spinach he ever ate in his life--this stuff was reallllly nice) and homemade spaetzle. Ich liebe Spaetzle, wirklich. This sauce is just brilliant, and everything about the dish was perfect. For dessert, we got two desserts to split: the coupe glacée, and the banoffi pie, which my dad hadn’t tried before. We were also treated to a darling little raspberry Napoleon, with lots of fresh raspberries and fresh peach and raspberry coulis patterns on the plate, lovely flavours and presentation. Big yawn, I know, Deborah has another good dinner at Parkside
  6. Chocolate mousse at Mistral. Somewhere I have had an excellent molten chocolate cake with pistachio ice cream, but I can't think where. If it comes to me I will post!
  7. My dad and I went to Aurora Bistro last night for a long-overdue visit. It was a pleasant evening, not too hot. We arrived just after 7:00 to find four other tables occupied, not bad for a Monday night. They have a special on: three courses, three wines, $48; but we opted to order from the regular menu. We ordered a bottle of Golden Mile Cellars 2004 Cabernet-Syrah, not spectacular but completely serviceable, something I’d order again. Chef Jeff kindly brought us an amuse, a teaser of the Smoked Salmon and Chouriço Rillette currently on the menu, with a jicama and...fennel? salad on top. I liked it, the salmon I assume is house-smoked, it was a nice texture combination with complex flavours. We also got to look at some pictures of Chef’s new son Ronin, who, of course, is adorable We both started with a Stoney Paradise Heirloom Tomato Salad, as juicy and delicious as you could want: regular red tomatoes, green tomatoes, orange tomatoes, and the Sungold orange cherry tomatoes which I happen to think are the absolute star of the tomato world. Served simply with a gazpacho vinaigrette and some Gort’s Gouda. We were both very happy with it, summer on a plate. For mains, my dad once again had the Maple and Mustard-Glazed Pork Tenderloin, and, predictably, cleaned his plate. He just can’t get any further on the menu, he loves that pork so much I had a beautifully cooked piece of halibut, served with (I suspect) Milan’s haricots chers, chanterelles, peaches, and I am drawing a blank on the name of the starch. It was nutty and delicious. We were sorely tempted to have dessert (Wild Huckleberry Trifle! the superfabulous Dark Chocolate Pâté!) but I had saved a bit of birthday cake for my dad to taste, and we didn’t think we could manage two dessert courses on a school night. Next time! Thanks so much to Chef and the rest of the crew for an excellent dinner. Aurora remains on the short list.
  8. That's gouging! High tea in high season. ← Almost as much per person in CDN dollars as it is in GBP at the Savoy (some years ago, I paid £60/person)...
  9. Are the restaurants also donating a percentage of sales, as with Dining Out for Life? What I gleaned from a quick glance at the website was that $1 per diner would be donated. Perhaps I need to delve further.
  10. Yesterday I had some of the sort of semi-homemade but really not! key lime pie I made on the weekend: white trash alert....Keebler shortbread crust, lined with semi-sweet and bittersweet, filled with Shirriff's cooked key lime filling, with a little bit of fresh lime juice extra. Without the chocolate lining it would have been pretty dire, but it wasn't bad for what it was. Actually the filling with a better crust would have been fine, but that Keebler thing is ecch. And thanks, everyone, for the birthday wishes When I take the rest of the cake out of the freezer later this week, I will try to take a better picture.
  11. For seekers of tea-drinking trivia, Canada officially ceased to be a British colony with the passage of the Statute of Westminster in 1931. Para los buscadores del trivia te'-que bebi'a, Canadá dejó oficialmente de ser una colonia británica con el paso del estatuto de Westminster en 1931. Memo, from the land of trivial pursuits ← And for those who may be confused by the non-official language bilingual noticia (que beuno), please note that it is British Columbia, not British Colombia...
  12. Having my Mahvelous Mr Wolf with 6 burners and a (most-often) covered grill, I tend to keep a pot on the stove top and a ceramic roasting pan that hasn't found a permanent home yet. Oh, and a kettle, of course. Thank heavens my pot holders are decent, and the simmer setting is so low, though, as I toasted a pot holder I put to protect a plate from the hot grate once.
  13. Sorry for rotten quality of photo...I served with whipped cream sweetened with a touch of the GM syrup. I was quite happy with the sponge (if not the neatness of my torting ), my first effort.
  14. Cheers, Kate I will try to down/upload pics after my nap, Abra. There is a rather large hole in a bottle of rather good tequila on my shelf, and I haven't yet motivated myself to plug things in yet
  15. The cake I made for my 40th birthday party (ouch!): two layers of chocolate sponge (Baking Illustrated recipe) soaked in Grand Marnier syrup, with a nice solid layer of marzipan cream between, topped with about an inch-thick layer of RLB's Chocolate Oblivion (made with Callebaut semisweet, also with some GM), the whole slathered with Valrhona 61%/cream/butter/GM ganache...turned out pretty OK
  16. Last night's Parkside birthday extravaganza... The Dude (my dad) and I are looking at the menu, and he points out the caviare and Champagne option; oh! I say, and order that. Blue Mountain Brut Rosé, bigger bubbles than the Piper-Heidsieck Rosé Sauvage we'd been drinking at home, and less fruity, but also quite nice. Served with little sanddollar pancakes (blini?) with a cascade of salmon roe and some crème fraîche, just lovely. We only ordered for one, as the Dude was driving and doesn't like roe, but we got two... Then the starter. I didn't have to order as I knew they were coming up with something foei-y in the back for me. The Dude had the Bayonne ham with melon, arugula, parm reggiano, hazelnut oil I think it is? and he enjoyed it immensely. They might have created that dish with him in mind. Lucky me, they created my dish with me in mind: a bed of brioche pain perdu, bathed in a sauce of sherry vinegar, sour cherries and fresh figs, topped with a rather large portion of seared foie gras, with a little salad of fresh dill and italian parsley to refresh....soooo good. We had a little intermezzo of two of the pea and ricotta ravioli with carrot jus, and it really sounds better if you say cawwot like Jacques Pépin. It was delicious. Then for mains we both had the Pheasant saltimbocca, with a genius sauce of course, more fresh figs (bring on the figs! I love summer!) and a parsnip, a carrot, and a white asparagus, some baked polenta (really good), and some I think it was spinach, I didn't have any...saving room for dessert For wine we had the Domaine de la Grange des Pères, and since we were only two and the Dude was driving and I had already had four or five glasses of Champagne, we had some to offer Chef when he came out to say hello and wish me happy birthday For dessert, we couldn't resist the siren call of the homemade crack--er, marshmallows. We both had the coupe glacée, and Chef told us about the whole foam thing, he was turned on to it a bit by a chef he was paired with for a culinary event in Montréal last February...he said he's not at all into the molecular whatnot, but the white chocolate foam seemed OK Er, more than OK in our opinion. I think that's the best chocolate ice cream I've ever had, anywhere. WOW. They also kindly brought the Dude a scoop of green apple sorbet to try, and he nearly licked the wee bowl. A very very nice birthday, and today's Tony's birthday I hope he has a good one. Superlative service as ever FOH, and the BOH really outdid itself for one of their biggest fans. Thanks a bunch! Edited to add: there was a small child there, which reminded me of the contentious thread in this forum...we arrived after 8:00 and that party left after 11:00, by which time the little one was fast asleep in his (?) stroller. Very well-behaved child, whom I will admit I heard singing sweetly at some point, but that was the extent of the aural assault, and I found it charming, however inappropriate If all kids in restaurants can be that quiet and nice, bring 'em on.
  17. The Oblivion is my go-to cake, I will make a 6-inch one at the drop of a hat, since once you get the hang of it it's sooooooooo easy. I will add my voice to the others who say buttercream probably wouldn't be the best foil for it, definitely whipped cream. I usually don't even add sugar to the cream, just a bit of liqueur or Jameson's. It's heavy enough that your filling should be pretty solid, as well. I've done it with white chocolate ganache and white chocolate fondant (for a wedding--nobody passed out in diabetic shock in fact almost everyone finished their generous slices, and several had seconds); finished in ganache; and just like it comes out of the pan. If you wait till it's been out of the fridge for a while, you can smooth out the top/sides to make it prettier. It gets shiny when it warms up. (You can also take the opportunity to do that when you warm the pan to slide it out.) I've never done a thinner one, but be careful of overbaking, take it out as soon as the top changes sheen. And please let us know how it went, as I am making a 6-inch recipe in a 10-inch pan this week, and I've never done it before ! Best of luck! Edited to add a link to a pic of a shiny one.
  18. I'm over 50. Everything pisses me off. ~~~~~~~ What do you think about the waiter sliding the napkin on your lap for you? I can't help but say it is creepy creepy creepy to me. eww eww eww ← This has only happened to me in a few restaurants, Kate, and the first time, I was about as astonished as you! mostly because as a rule I tend to put my napkin on my lap pretty much the moment I sit down, and it felt funny to be rushed. But it seems to be something done sort of in the spirit of helping you push your chair in, lest you feel or look awkward. But yeah, it can be a bit of an Ew! moment
  19. For $2900, you could buy and insure a beater just for going to the DTES.
  20. I got a bunch at Chocolate Mousse (?) on Robson last year. They had the pricey stainless kind and the cheaper ones, too.
  21. I do love me some Dungeness crab. That's what we had for my birthday last year.
  22. Pretty sure it's all over this thread. Wake up, Lee!
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