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Everything posted by fresco

  1. Could well be regional. McCains is a Canadian company, but I think they are the world's largest french fry producer. They do it in umpteen countries. Their Canadian commercials are pretty straight ahead.
  2. Sounds dumb, but not a lot dumber than most commercials. The "scary" people make it the worst ever? Has anyone else seen this? Comments?
  3. Don't think I've caught this one. What is it exactly that makes it the worst ever? (The competition is fierce.)
  4. My wife and I are off to the Algarve in a couple of days and hope to sample some of the best of Portugal's spectacular food and wine, in restaurants, cooking for ourselves and in excursions to Lisbon, Alentejo and the tapas bars of Seville. We'll be joined for part of the time by two other couples, and I'll try to post regularly about what we discover. Meantime, any suggestions for great meals and great wines and places to see would be much appreciated.
  5. "Canadian bacon" and "peameal bacon" are two different things. Peameal is a brine cured loin, coated in cornmeal. Canadian bacon is a smoke cured loin. Usually. Although it's referred to in Canada as "back bacon" never "Canadian bacon."
  6. Roasted red pepper seems to go especially well with chicken in a sandwich. It's pretty good without the chicken, too.
  7. Peameal bacon on a bun is already the signature food of Toronto, in much the same way that smoked meat is for Montreal. Why does it require a special designation?
  8. A few shows have migrated from Food Network Canada to Fine Living. In an earlier thread, I speculated that the thinking probably is that Opening Soon and other programs (Thirsty Traveller comes to mind) are more "niche" programming than mass market, and therefore better suited to Fine Living than FN USA.
  9. I don't think it shows anything of the sort. How many customers does it take to keep one Thai restaurant in a community in business? A couple of thousand?
  10. I wonder if this is so. My impression is that a small percentage of the population is moving towards an expanded palate, but for most, the food choices have actually narrowed because of price, preference and other factors.
  11. The gratin would probably work. Kale is a lot tougher than spinach, and takes longer to cook. It goes well in soups. The Portuguese use it in a version with potatoes, chorizo, etc.
  12. The piece says that 70 per cent of restaurant customers "customized" their order last year, which I suspect means "hold the pickle" or "hold the mayo." If this is out-of-control consumerism, we're in big trouble.
  13. I suspect pot will be decriminalized in Canada before BYO wine is permitted in Ontario.
  14. If Ontario actually goes ahead with this, it will be the fourth province to allow BYO wine to restaurants--Alberta just opened it up a few months ago, and Quebec and New Brunswick have had it for a while. But I think in Quebec you can only bring wine to unlicenced restaurants. Don't know how it works elsewhere. As others have said, long overdue.
  15. fresco

    Cooking Extravagantly

    I wonder if Sandra Lee would recommend bottled water for pasta because it is more "convenient" than tap water?
  16. Ontario is considering allowing patrons of restaurants licenced to serve alcohol to bring their own bottle of wine and, what's more, to have the bottled recorked and bring any unfinished wine home, says the province's premier: http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/stor...479/?hub=Canada
  17. I know people who freeze partial bottles of wine for drinking and swear that the taste is much better than it would be if they didn't freeze it, but doubt they are doing this with $100 bottles. Then again, it's unlikely you're using $100 wine for cooking.
  18. [Thanks to the GI Bill, it was growing very fast, and he discovered a very strong relationship between years of education and alcoholic consumption. "It was as perfect a correlation as found in market research," he notes.] This seems to suggest that education turns people into drunks. Canada doesn't have Trader Joe, but the influence of the chain and its founder has been profound here. When Loblaws began remaking itself some years ago, the grocery chain "borrowed" heavily from Trader Joe, launching a lookalike "newsletter" format flyer called Insider's Report, which trumpeted new house brand products. I suspect Loblaws' plunge into a whole range of stuff like balsamic vinegar and various exotic sauces and cheese before these things were really mainstream was also inspired by TJ. It's paid off, because Loblaws went from nowhere to the dominant supermarket chain in Canada, thanks in part to the TJ influence.
  19. "The bans would have only a minor impact on U.S. consumers, said John Roberts, president of the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade, based in New York City, which includes sellers of imported foods. ``Most of the fresh foie gras (Americans) have been consuming has probably been coming out of the New York Hudson Valley anyhow,'' Roberts said. ``As to the cold cuts, I'm not recalling a lot of French cold cuts being part of my regular life here in the United States." YOu do have to wonder, though, how much of this food banning business has to do with making some point not necessarily related to safety. At the height of the BSE scare, dozens of countries banned imports of Canadian beef. I'd be surprised if most of them had ever imported a single sirloin steak. But the beauty of joining such highly publicized bans is it gives a government an opportunity to look like it is actually doing something, without actually spending any money, or, really, doing anything.
  20. It can, if you're willing to go to Google news.
  21. Here's a Reuters version, which doesn't require registration: http://www.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?t...storyID=4346368
  22. fresco

    Onion Confit

    Isn't this just another way of saying "caramelized"?
  23. My favorites are just about any tropical fruits if eaten in the tropics. Most of them are pretty sad shadows of themselves if they have to travel, although pineapples have improved a lot lately.
  24. California alone would keep them busy for a while. Lots of excess capacity and money losing operations to consolidate there.
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