Alluring Almond Torte

Hello!

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This was my first attempt at making a Passover (Seder) friendly cake.

I adapted this recipe from Epicurious. It is really quite simple.  I made it the evening before and decorated it the day of.  While there are recommendations to just sprinkle slivered almonds on top prior to baking, I wanted to make it more visually appealing with some candied lemon slices.  With a pool of chocolate marzipan in the middle, it looked like the cake was wearing a zesty halo of deliciousness.

Although there’s no flour, it is a sturdy cake with a moist and tightly woven crumb. It has the perfect density akin to a chiffon cake, thanks in part to the separate whipping of egg yolks and egg whites.  It’s so good on its own that if I were to make it again, I’d just serve it with some whipped cream.

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Lemon- Almond Torte (adapted from Epicurious)

Ingredients

Quality olive oil (not extra-virgin) for brushing pan plus 6 tbsp (for the cake)

4 tbsp unsalted matzo meal, divided

2 cups almond flour or almond meal (you can make your own by buying slivered almonds from the bulk store, toasting them and then grinding them in the food processor.  However, I was pressed for time and just purchased Bob’s Red Mill Almond Flour– I toasted it in the oven to bring out some depth of flavour: 325°F for 5-10 minutes, stirring to brown evenly)

1 cup granulated sugar, divided

6 large eggs, separated (Note: easiest to separate when eggs are cold from the fridge)

2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 tbsp orange juice

2 tsp finely grated lemon peel

1/2 tsp pure almond extract

1/2 – 1 tsp of pure vanilla extract

1/2 tsp salt (I had coarse sea salt and used 1 tsp)

1/2 cup sliced almonds (optional)

Directions

For cake:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush 10-inch-diameter springform pan with oil (*I do not have a springform pan that large.  I used a regular 10-inch pan, greased it liberally and used parchment paper. It came out perfectly).  Line bottom with parchment paper round (* make sure you do this! It’ll make your life so much easier). Brush paper with oil. Place 2 tbsp matzo meal in pan and shake to coat; tap out excess.

Combine remaining 2 tbsp matzo meal, almond flour, and 1/3 cup sugar in medium bowl; whisk to blend.

Place egg yolks in large bowl; place egg whites in another large bowl. Add 1/3 cup sugar to yolks. Using electric mixer, beat yolk mixture until thick and fluffy (* I did this by hand.  Took a couple of minutes. Stop when the mix starts to form ribbon-like strands). Beat in 6 tbsp olive oil, then lemon juice, orange juice, and lemon peel. Stir in extracts. Mix in dry ingredients.

Add 1 tsp salt to whites; using clean dry beaters, beat until soft peaks form ( * Again, I did this by hand with a balloon whisk.  Didn’t take long). Gradually add 1/3 cup sugar and beat until stiff but not dry. Fold whites into yolk mixture in 3 additions. Transfer batter to prepared pan. Sprinkle almonds over (if using).

Bake cake until golden brown and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 40 minutes (mine only took 30 minutes… so watch it carefully. If the top starts to brown too quickly,  loosely drape a piece of aluminum foil over cake pan).

Place pan on rack; cool cake completely in pan.

Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover cake pan with foil and let stand at room temperature.

Serves 10-12.

 

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Candied Lemons (from Real Simple)

* like the best sweet and sour candy you’ve ever put into your mouth.  You’ll pucker with delight at the tang and the chewiness.

Ingredients

3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 lemon, thinly sliced

 Directions

In a small (* I used a medium one to cook more slices at once) saucepan, combine the sugar with ¾ cup water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the lemon slices and simmer until tender and translucent, 5 to 7 minutes (took way longer… about 14-15 minutes). Drain and let cool completely on a rack before placing on the cake.

* I used about 3 lemons for the cake.

** You can reserve the sweet and sour syrup and brush (sparingly!) on freshly baked cakes, muffins.

Feed Me: Boralia (formerly Borealia)

Hello Lovlies,

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The bf and I took his mommy out for eats the other night. We decided to try one of the relatively new kids on the block– Borealia (*as of April 8, 2015, they’ve changed it to Boralia!), on the Ossington strip.

Borealia’s food philosophy is to draw inspiration from “the historic foods of the natives, early settlers, and subsequent immigrant groups who arrived in the 18th and 19th centuries”. Interesting to know we’d be kicking it old school and we’d be doing some taste bud time traveling.

The restaurant space is cozy and reminiscent of the pioneer days – with a homey, log cabin feel. Even the cocktail booklet is bound with leather– as if to say, yes (!) we hunted and foraged for the food you are about to eat.

While I am a self-proclaimed #OMNOMNOMnivore, between the three of us, we were advised to order tapas style: 2-3 dishes per person.  After 6 dishes and 2 starters, I was still not full.

On the whole, the experience was a positive one but the price points were not worth the portion sizes– far too small.

With that said, let’s proceed with the eats:

Chopsuey Croquettes – these crispy spheres are breaded in panko (fantastic crunch factor) and stuffed with mushroom scented arancini and Chinese sausage.. hence the name.   I adored the earthy flavour and nuggets of sausage in each bite.  Alas there were only 3 small pieces. I could of eaten an entire bucket of ’em

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Red Fife Levain Bread & Cultured Butter- what’s there to say except that homemade bread is killer?  Especially when they use a grandfather grain from our prairie provinces. Yay to culture and tangy-ness (of bread flavour).

L’éclade – fanciful mussels unveiled in a showy clear-domed cloche.  It’s like we were eating these little sea critters in the thick of an evergreen forest– what with all the pine-y fumes surrounding us. I don’t go ga-ga over mussels, but they were tender little morsels and the butter broth at the bottom was a pleasure to sop up with the bread we ordered.

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Spiced Scallop Crudo – gorgeous presentation, but a tad dull flavour-wise.  Yes, the  scallops were fresh, soft and buttery but they didn’t really seem to absorb any of the marinade it sat on (Fermented Chili, Late Harvest Apple Cider Vinegar).

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Pan-Roasted Elk – probably the most pleasurable dish of the evening.  It was that sexy, runny egg that did it in for me.  That golden goodness oozed everywhere- thanks to a perfectly deep fried Wild Rice-Crusted Egg.  It was a lovely meld of textures: the lean elk with the rich tasting yolk.  Cranberry Gastrique, Burnt Onion and Radish were tangy and bitter accompaniments that helped cut through the richness of the proteins.

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Grilled Mushroom Salad – Umami mushrooms, coupled with refreshing watercress sauce, and spinked with Hazelnut Corn Cake. It was a such a well-rounded mix the textures and flavours.  And that Hazelnut corn cake? I could devour it by the bucketful.  The natural, sweet nuttiness played off so nicely with the meaty- textured mushrooms.  

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Pigeon Pie – the talk of the town (according to nearly every review in the city). A buttery parcel containing hunks of roast squab breast and creamy parsnip.  Pretty as a picture, it was near perfection– the only slight problem was the crust itself– a tad too salty imho.  Other than that.. all the remaining components were ridiculously delicious.  Perfectly seasoned and cooked meat with a charred crust and juicy interior.

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Sugar Shack ‘Ham’Smoked Pork Cheek, Maple Cider Glaze, Crispy Potato, Glazed Rutabaga.  This dish was a letdown.  Dare I say it was over-smoked? The meat was so dry and coarse… and overly salty.  The only saving grace was probably those crispy potato nuggets– like a pimped out tater-tot.

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We’re pigs (or maybe– just me). So we ordered all of the desserts. You’d expect no less of me, no?

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Cloudberry Linzer TorteCoffee Cream, Hibiscus Gel. Ooooh, I love me a good lattice weave.  A buttery delight with that full bodied coffee cream.

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Louisbourg Hot Chocolate Beignets- Spiced Chocolate Ganache, Beer Batter, Lemon Sugar. What is this magical fried goodness? Bite into the fluffy cloud to reveal a molten lava of creamy-dreamy chocolate. MOAR i say! Give me MOAR. p.s. if you haven’t already guess it by now.. they be killin’ it when it comes to deep fried goodies.

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Aunt Lucy’s Apple ‘Tart’Apple Brown Butter Filling, Apple Sorbet, Streusel, Torched Meringue. Mmmm torched meringue is like a toasted marshmallow. Brings me back to my Girl Guide days.  Aside from that, the rest of the components were lost to that sorbet.  Yes, it was good but I was really keen to taste the brown butter filling– but I didn’t.

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And BONUS:

– since I was in the neighborhood, I got 2 cookies from Bang Bang Ice Cream for a snack later.

Midnight cocoa cookies with 70% (i suspect) chocolate bits studded throughout the dough. Oh so yum with a glass of milk.

A cobbled oatmeal cookie with pretzels, chocolates, nuts. and yay! No raisins (sorry but raisins need to stay the EFF away from oatmeal cookies. It’s just a sad crime when they’re present instead of chocolate).

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And review, over and out. Comments? Thoughts? Cookies?

 

 


Feed Me: Dragon Legend

Hey Lovelies,

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Saturday was date-night… combo dinner and glow-in-the-dark bowling.  However, downtown Toronto bowling rates are atrocious ($65/hour, exsqueeze-mean??!?!?!)  so we opted to find food near the World Bowl in Richmond Hill.  Off of Hwy 7 and Woodbine avenue, we found Dragon Legend, an AYCE- buffet restaurant.

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Upon our arrival, we got off to a rocky start.  We made reservations on Thursday, but they questioned whether we had made them at all.  They could not “find” said reservations– so we were made to wait with a buzzer… not cool. Despite this snafu, we were seated without having to wait too long — perhaps they sensed our HANGRY & mild disdain for their inability to take down a simple reservation request.

With that behind us, we turned our attention to the eats and the space. The restaurant is large and a tad over-the-top, containing loads of Chinese paraphernalia and trinkets from the dynasty days. Nonetheless, we embraced the spirit of the environment and the Game of Thrones- like seats.

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A word of caution: the space gets severely crowded.  The buffet is actually the middle ground & traffic comes from EVERYWHERE– think of it like this: all traffic lanes converging to enter the Don Valley Parkway during rush hour— yes, it is like that. Chaos. Patrons entering the restaurant, patrons leaving the restaurant, current diners zipping from one area to another, staff replenishing dishes… you get the idea.  I was concerned about sanitation in light of this– but there are food guards held in place and staff members at nearly every station keeping a watchful eye.

The food: taking into consideration that this is a buffet–on the whole, all items were executed/ prepared properly and seasoned well.

My stomach game plan for you:

The star was definitely the Peking duck.  I’d make a beeline for that section before the lineups begin (and boy did they ever snake across the room by the time 8/8:30pm rolled around)

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Sashimi/sushi: go for the sweet raw shrimp, salmon and red tuna sashimi.  The rolls were decent too.  Not overloaded with rice and an ample amount of filling (i.e. tempura shrimp, creamy avocado)

– also try the raw mussels and crab legs (I only had the latter; the meat was soft and sweet).

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Hand-pulled noodles: Made in a ginormous cooking vat, noodles of various make-up (regular and spinach) are pulled into the hot liquid– then you choose your broth and toppings (green onions, etc., choice of protein– chicken, duck)

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Deep fried goodies: crispy honey-glazed sesame chicken strips (a guilty pleasure), juicy chicken wings, deep fried oysters: perfect crispy exterior and plump interior, chili wok-fried tofu pieces (like popcorn.. once you pop… you really cannot stop).

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Meaty-Meats: beef ribs.. juicy and a nice marbling of fat– but unfortunately, lacking in the requisite beef-y flavour… in fact it was rather bland (I would give it another chance though because they cooked the short ribs well). However, the prime rib was cooked a perfect medium rare and served with all the traditional fixings ( jus, popovers, mashed potatoes, etc). Tender and succulent.

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Unique booze: my friend order a rose cocktail. Nice sweet floral notes (she said it reminded her of a rose Turkish delight). I’d try it next time.

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With bellies full, it was time to bowl!

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I came last in the first set (HA), and second place in the second set. Not too shabby.

Feed Me: Copa by Sea

Hi Lovelies!

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I’m in a chipper mood… and who wouldn’t be– since it is the weekend! Yay.

20150326_185713Anyhow, a few days ago, I was given an invite from the lovely people (this is you, Pam!) at Zomato (who also now own Urbanspoon) to meet some fellow food bloggers/ writers/ photographers at a dinner event.  #ZomatoMeetup is a place where local food lovers can meet casually and speak about their love of all things edible– while eating– food, of course.

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This event felt different;  I definitely felt more relaxed than when covering a media story.  Yes, periodically, our faces were buried in cell phones via tweeting FB-ing, Instagram-ing and the like… however, it was quite refreshing to discover that we were keen to make conversation with one another.

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Our Zomato diners occupied two tables worth of people.  This was a lot considering the restaurant is quite small– it is situated underneath the Copacabana (Brazilian) Restaurant. For a Thursday night, it was incredibly busy.  By the time we left (around 10pm), there wasn’t a free table in sight.

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Onto the food.  Initial impressions— admittedly– I didn’t really have any.  I’ve been to Brazilian (ayce) steakhouses before where they serve you meat on a large spit and carve table-side to give it a more upscale and personalized feel… I assumed it would be the same thing– just with seafood this time.

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We moseyed on up to the grill where we could see a flurry of staff darting here and there. In front of the bar, there was a small buffet of cold crab legs, peel your own shrimp and salmon sashimi to start.  These were great little starters to whet our appetites.  The seafood was very fresh.

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Our table was given a set of nigiri, sushi rolls, and raw oysters.

Sprinkled with lemon wedges, the raw oysters were pleasant and mildly sweet.

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The rolls. The Positive: They weren’t overstuffed with rice and each piece was draped with slices of red tuna. The negative: the tuna filling wasn’t memorable and the heat (spice level) was non-existent.  There was also a dynamite roll. The shrimp tempura was crispy and melded well with the avocado.  They’re what you’d expect from a decent Sushi spot in Toronto.

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The nigiri- do get: the eel and red tuna.  Don’t bother with : the salmon, cooked shrimp, fake crab stick.

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A word of advice– they’ll give you one of everything to taste… then the servers return to ask you what you’d like seconds of.  Remember to save yourself for all the grilled fish that follows.  They’re the stars of the menu– something we all temporarily forgot in our moment of #hangry.  They dole out the fried stuff and the sushi first– don’t fill up on this!

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Floating around were freshly baked lobster cheese biscuits and cornbread.  At first, I didn’t know they were biscuits because they looked rather unappealing (sorry)– like flattened discs (perhaps, not enough leavening?) .  However, the taste was pleasant enough.  There weren’t any nuggets of lobster in my piece but they were generous with the cheddar. The cornbread was a northern style– very sweet with leavening agents– in fact, it reminded me more of a cake than a savoury item.  Regardless, it was tender, with a moist crumb (probably would make a fantastic shortcake!) and chalk full of roasted corn flavour.

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We also received Salmon and Tuna Ceviche: Unfortunately, it was quite unpalatable.  It oddly tasted of sour, bitter, and spice.  It was like a soupy concoction gone wrong. I’ve also never seen chickpeas in ceviche before.

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The servers came around with their Rodizio style servings of:

Umadashi Scallops- a fantastic char flavour from the grill.  These juicy morsels were loved by the table.

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Garlic Shrimp – succulent, with a roasted taste and sweetness (I suspect from generous brushings of butter)

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Passion Fruit Salmon – A wakening for the taste buds with all that citrus.  It wasn’t for me.. perhaps because I typically don’t expect that flavour from salmon. However, the salmon was cooked a perfect medium (bordering on medium-rare) with a crispy chip skin

Teriyaki Salmon – divine. One of my favourites of the evening– kissed with spices and a hint of sweetness.. it was a perfect balance of savoury and sweet… and that crispy skin! Someone in the kitchen knows how to get their grill on.

Mahi Mahi Tandoori – dusted with curry spices, the taste lingers on the taste buds.  This was an item that you either loved or hated.  For me, I liked the taste but not the flaked/ stiffer texture of the fish.

Black Cod- it took awhile before this came out but it was worth the wait.  With a umami glaze atop the fish, the large flakes were so succulent and meaty.

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Bacon Wrapped Cod- not my favourite.  Yes, bacon is divine.. but the fish is so mild and was completely overpowered by the salty meat.

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Peanut Butter Chicken- the ‘rare bird’ of the night. Pardon the pun.  We were all so intrigued by the name but the dish was a letdown. The piece I received was stringy and slightly dry.  The peanut butter was not a satay sauce but more akin to smearing some Kraft peanut butter right on the chicken.  I commend them for their innovation and wanting to try new things with their menu, but this one just did not taste good.

Buttermilk Ribeye-  a smart way to tenderize and marinade the meat with something acidic.  Definitely helps to ensure that any tough connective tissue is broken down and made tender.  The char on that seared crust! Oh so addictive… especially when you cut into that velvety, soft interior.

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Beef Ribs – I was expecting an actual rib (like ones you find at BBQ restaurants).  Instead, they placed large nuggets on our plate which looked and tasted more like a braised brisket or short rib.  I loved the first round– perfect meat to fat ratio.  The next one I received was dry and stringy– I don’t fault the restaurant.  It was probably because this cut was a leaner one.

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Lobster Mac and Cheese- Very rich and creamy- although the noodles were slightly mushy (an al dente texture would have been more ideal), there were large pieces of lobster. The cheese was gooey and crispy all at once.  Despite its small size, don’t be tempted to tackle this one on your own!  It is actually very filling.

Dessert was grilled banana and pineapple wedges. The bananas weren’t that pleasant; unfortunately they weren’t ripe yet and rather starchy.  The pineapple was juicy but could have used some more time on the grill as we all adored that charred flavour.

We ended the evening with goodbyes and a goodie bag from Pam. Thank you xo.

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Feed Me: Bikkuri Japanese Restaurant

Hello!

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This is a bit of a quickie post.  However, what I can offer in terms of useful info is that this place is walking distance from the Air Canada Centre… which means you can eat well without having to pay $20-30 dollars for one measly, sad sandwich.

My bf got tickets to see the Raptors 7:30pm game about 2 weeks back.

We opted to try Bikkuri Japanese restaurant on King East.

Typically, we have a bit of a game-plan ourselves (see what I did there? haha. okay I’ll stop.) when we go for sushi/sashimi.

In our experience, bento boxes don’t really satisfy.  Instead, we choose 4-5 rolls to share, 1 roll that’s spicy (for me), an appetizer and a sashimi starter/appetizer of sorts.

Considering this restaurant was located in the dt core and in the financial district, it was refreshing to see that the prices were very reasonable.  

The decor is comfortable enough, and strangely surrounded with a wall of wines (unusual for an Asian establishment).  However, I was reminded that finance/suits come here for meetings,etc — explaining the variety of alcohol stocked up.

The starters were unremarkable– good– but nothing to write home about.  The standard seaweed salad.  The usual sashimi starter (salmon, white tuna, red tuna, clam).  It was fresh enough– but imo, I suggest amping up the flavour with a sprinkling of the lemon slices they typically supply you with.  It really brightens up the taste of the fish.

Onto the rolls.  Which were in a boat (!).. yes, apparently I’m still 5 years old because at that moment, I really needed to know if it would float in water… but I digress.

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The food:

Spider roll: fresh fried soft shell crab with the usual accompaniments.  Not too much rice used and stuffed to the brim with avocado, cucumber, roe, and (imitation) crab.

Dragon Roll: fun to eat, as always.  Eel is lush and rich and the tempura battered shrimp is precisely the thing needed to balance the flavours out.

Calvin Maki (BBQ eel, tobiko, avocado, mayo, wrapped with salmon): one of the specialties of the house.  The coral salmon slices made it a standout from the crowd. 

Spicy Salmon: incredibly fresh.  Rather than chopping the pieces up and mixing it with the spicy mayo — and then given loads of filler (tempura bits), the salmon was rolled into a fat cylinder and given a dab of sauce.  The texture was wondrous. A nice hearty bite.  The only letdown was the spicy mayo.  Incredibly mild– virtually non-existent.

Sweet Potato rolls: a new addition to our selection as of late.. tempura battered sweet potato pieces are crispy and crunchy on the exterior and soft, creamy on the inside.  I’m not a vegetarian, but I’d convert for a day (ha) if I was allowed to eat this! While simple enough, the seaweed wraps tasted of the ocean– so fresh that they retained a slight crisp texture.  I also like that– again– they weren’t overzealous with the rice as a filler.

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If you’re in the area and need a quick bite to eat– this place fits the bill perfectly.  Fast, friendly service and fresh rolls at a reasonable price. 

Happy NOMNOMNOM-ing,

Tiffany

http://www.bikkuri.ca/kingst.html

Feed Me: Two Cakes

Hi there,

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I was spoiled and received 2 cakes for my birthday– last month.  Yes, I’m playing catch-up with my posts.  Fortunately for you… you can still get these tasty treats now!

First up, Chestnut Mousse cake aka Mont Blanc, from J-Town’s Bakery Nakamura. http://bakerynakamura.com/menu

 

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A yellow sponge cake encased with wall of rich, chestnut strands.  In between the layers– airy whipped cream and real chestnut marbles.

The taste? Very light on the palate.  The chestnut paste was dense, creamy (akin to Pâté)– and slightly sweetened.

The cake itself was a letdown. There was no flavour to the genoise and it was slightly dry.  It was a shame because the other components were solid.  If they had put these elements on a butter cake or biscuit base, the textures would have played off well with one another.

 Next on the bill of fare: The Chocolate Pearl, one of the signature cakes by Phipps https://www.facebook.com/phippsdessertskk

Described as “4 layers of alternating vanilla and dark chocolate cake, filled and frosted with Belgian chocolate fudge frosting and decorated with silver dragees.”

Eaten right out of the fridge- the flavours were muted.  However, if left to sit out at room temperature for a few hours the flavours blossomed. *Dessert hack- defrost (yes! use this setting) for a few seconds in the microwave and result is a slightly oozy frosting and soft cake layers- melt in your mouth delightful!

I quite enjoyed this cake. While it isn’t a wild dessert with ‘exotic’ flavours– for its simplicity– it is done well. It is a traditional birthday cake.  Afterall, a small slip-up could be detrimental because there’s nothing to hide behind & save it. 

The layers had a tender crumb. While there was a light floral aroma from the vanilla layer — the cocoa flavour could have been amped up a bit (not really prominent at all).  The frosting wasn’t overly sweet or grainy so that was a welcome bonus.  The thick, fudge- like frosting– that triggers your inner happy child- made this a lot of fun to eat.

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Feed Me: Fresh Feasts, Chowzter North American Awards 2015

 

Hello!

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Satchmo doing what he does best. Great artists in New Orleans showcased at Willy Mae Scotch House restaurant

What could be more pleasurable than a three day jaunt in one of the loveliest places in America: New Orleans.  It was there that my fellow Chowzters and I nominated numerous ‘Best of Foods’ in North America and handed out awards to chief Chowzters responsible for its nomination.

So firstly, what is Chowzters? In a nutshell… this:

“Chowzter is a global network of the world’s most celebrated food experts and writers, all searching for the tastiest Fast Feasts on the planet. Prepared by passionate and inspired artisans, Fast Feasts are locally sourced, freshly prepared, served hot on the spot and enjoyed immediately. The best of these Fast Feasts reflect the local culture, history and traditions of their cities and countries of origin.

These unique discoveries are highly curated and undergo a rigorous local and international process. They are featured on our web site and App (Android and Apple versions available) and are celebrated at Chowzter regional and global award ceremonies.”

North-America-2015-winners

As a fellow Expert Chowzter, I curate the best eats in the Niagara region (Niagara on the Lake, Niagara falls and surrounding areas, St. Catherines).  If you want to read my recommendations, visit their website. http://www.chowzter.com/fast-feasts/north-america/Niagara

I won’t write much more– I’ll let the sumptuous photos do the talking– but truly– this was quite a surreal experience. One I am grateful for.  From the moment the plane landed, I don’t believe an hour went by where I wasn’t eating something divine.  It was a pleasure to meet my fellow Expert Chowzters and talk to them about food.  Their vivacious spirit and curiosity to seek the finest eats made me feel as if I were home.  If we weren’t talking about what we were currently devouring– we would fantasize about the next thing we wanted to eat.   I honestly don’t know how I fit all that food into my stomach.

One more thing.  I forgot to bring my DSLR so I had to bring my old samsung phone from the dark ages.  Apologies for the blurry photos!  I’ll be sure to up my snapping game in my next posts! Pinky swear. 🙂

p.s. these are all photos for Day 1.

Day 2 and 3 to follow.

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We stayed at the Hyatt. A little welcome note. Nice personal touch
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I arrived on Friday, one day before the Awards Ceremony (which would be held at the famous Commander’s Palace!) and decided to explore the French Quarter. This whimsical painting caught my eye.
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Music flows through the veins of the people of New Orleans. At every street corner, you would see talented street performers busking and having a grand time.
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First magnificent meal. Raw oysters on the half shell freshly shucked. Add a squeeze of lemon to bring out the natural sweetness of these plump beauties. @Acme Oyster House
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We officially meet all the North American Chowzter experts at Antoine’s! Yes, I’ll have a sazerac or two please! After all, this cocktail was invented here!
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On to Brennan’s for drinks and fun! Our first night together for food and mingling.
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A drink in hand makes a happy man 😉
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There was no shortage of liquid libations.
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Day 1, the welcome dinner menu at Brennan’s
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The chicken was unfortunately dry. The voluptuous hollandaise sauce made a valiant attempt at combating the unwelcomed texture of the protein. The crisp potato nuggets were quickly speared by my fork and devoured.
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Sometimes, simple is best. Like this salad. Fun frisee with crisp salty bacon morsels were a delight to eat. Balanced perfectly with a tangy vinaigrette.
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Broiled cheesy concoction oozed on top of the oysters. A tad salty, but I appreciated the innovation and mix-match of textures.
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A deep, rich roux was the base of this gumbo. Really great depth of flavour. Paired with some cornbread and i’m in comfort-ville.
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I tasted the soul of New Orleans in this dish. Fresh shrimp– cooked nice and tender, sits atop of some creamy risotto. On the perimeter– some sass. Heat and bold spices in the tomato sauce.
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where’s there’s fire– there’s flavour and fun. 😉
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let everything meld together
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This this particular sweet was invented at Brennan’s. Yes, I’m referring to the Banana’s fosters.
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butter, brown sugar, booze, caramelized bananas, vanilla-bean flecked ice cream. What’s not to like here!