For the love of food

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens*Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens*Brown paper packages tied up with strings*These are a few of my favorite things*Cream colored ponies and crisp apple streudels*Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles*Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings*These are a few of my favorite things*Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes*Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes*Silver white winters that melt into springs*These are a few of my favorite things

Mild Chicken Curry – adapted from Vij’s family recipe January 11, 2010

Filed under: Food,Recipes,Vancouver Restaurants — lovemyfood @ 4:43 pm

If you like Indian food and you are not actually from India it is most likely that you rarely cook it at home but would rather go out or have it delivered to you and I am the same way; I love Vij’s in Vancouver, BC (for example) because it is slightly more sophisticated and is always consistent and delicious. But occasionally I do cook Indian food at home because I love the smell of spices and the vivid colors. This recipe is a classic, simple chicken curry appropriate for a mid-week dinner as well as for your guests. If you want to customize and add other vegetables please feel free, my only advice is to stick to 2-3 types so each one is distinct and present.

What you need:

1 onion – finely chopped

1 cinnamon stick

3 Tbsp chopped garlic

2 Tbsp  chopped ginger

2-3 (depending on size) tomatoes – chopped [I used 3 small Roma tomatoes]

2 chicken breasts – cubed into bite size pieces

10-15 crimini mushrooms (button mushrooms are ok, 3-4 portobello mushrooms would be awesome) – quartered

1 red bell pepper – sliced into ribbons or rounds

Spices: 1 Tbsp each salt, cumin, coriander powder, garam masala; 1 tsp turmeric; 1/2 tsp each black pepper & cayenne pepper.

1/2 cup thick (greek) yogurt

1/2 cup (light) sour cream

2 cups water

1/2 cup cilantro with the stems – chopped fine

To make:

Heat a few tablespoons of oil over medium heat, add onion and cinnamon – let cook for about 5 minutes, the onion should be golden; add garlic and sauté for another 2-3 minutes. Add ginger, tomatoes and spices cook for 5 minutes longer or until you see that the oil separates from the solids. Add chicken and cook for a few minutes until its cooked from the outside (not the inside); add peppers and mushrooms and cook for a couple more minutes. Add sour cream, yogurt and water – stir well, increase heat and bring to a boil; reduce heat back to medium, cover and let simmer for 15 minutes. Stir in cilantro and serve with rice (garnish with more cilantro).

I like to add cumin seeds to my rice a few minutes before its done.

The beauty of this dish is that it is a soup and a main course all at once which makes it a very good choices for those rainy (or snowy), cold, winter evenings. Stay warm!

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Thomas Haas, Vancouver March 11, 2009

thomas-haas-bakery-vancouver

It was a very pleasant discovery – a proper bakery in North Vancouver, making European pastries on a professional level, the only unpleasant part was that I discovered it only recently and now I moved back to WA so the next visit will not be any time soon.

Thomas Haas is famous for his chocolates and you can purchase them in high-end grocery stores like Whole Foods, Meinhardt’s and Capers…to be honest I have tasted the chocolates but wasn’t impressed, neither was my husband but the pastries do compensate for it big time! The space is tiny with two counters inside and a couple of outside tables. We have visited a couple of times and it was packed! The sandwiches are delicious and grilled if you want them to be, coffee is good and the pastries and delicious – both the cakes of sorts as well as the croissants and tarts – worth a detour even if you do not live in the neighborhood :)

good-pastries-in-vancouver

WWW: http://www.thomashaas.com

Address:  998 Harbourside Drive, North Vancouver   Tel: 604-924-1847 

 

Lumiere in Vancouver – review February 2, 2009

Filed under: Canada,Food,Travel,Vancouver,Vancouver Restaurants — lovemyfood @ 7:45 pm

Lumiere had an introductory $58, 3 course prix fixe (instead of the usual $98) during the 2 weeks of DineOut Vancouver 2009 – I do not know if it had anything to do with that but frankly my darling(s), I don’t give a damn!

The restaurant was almost full Sunday night @ 8:30pm, except for maybe 3 tables; the decor is great, the music is a nice background, service is professional and attentive, wine picks were perfect and the food was definitely interesting and rightfully praised by the various critics.

The amuse bouche was a selection of 3 miniature treats – a crab salad wrapped in lettuce with some squash strings at its basis; a squash soup with brown butter and sage foam; a squash quiche with yogurt topping which was tangy and was a nice offset for the sweet squash. For the appetizer we both chose the Lobster Bisque with lobster meat medallions (which I assume were made from lobster meat processed into a smooth cream and combined with some gelatin creating cute lobster coins of sort) which was delicious and appropriate for the weather the only thing I did not care for were the chipollini onions and carrots which were few but not required in my opinion. Seconds…I had the squash ravioli with pork belly and black trumpet mushrooms, those were delicious and very pretty; my husband has the veal trio (tongue grebiche ,tender loin with chanterelles and sweetbreads with ziti) which he enjoyed as well. A cheese selection followed (not included in the 3 course prix fixe) and it was a well selected one :) Desserts – if a meal was good but desserts were not, for me its a deal breaker and I was really glad this wasn’t the case here! My husband, the conservative, had a warm chocolate cake with Sicilian pistachio gelato and I had the caramelized pineapple with coconut rice pudding and pina-colada ice cream which was both refreshing and interesting – exactly what I wanted it to be! With the bill we got another treat, warm-out-of-the-oven mini citrus madeleines – nothing tastes or smells better than a baked anything right out of the oven :)

Bottom line, go and enjoy :)

WWW: http://www.lumiere.ca/

Address: 2551 West Broadway, Vancouver, BC   Tel: 604-739 8185

 

Kintaro Ramen on Denman (corner of Robson)

Filed under: Food,Vancouver,Vancouver Restaurants — lovemyfood @ 7:20 pm

It was very good, the noodles are delicious and are cooked to order. There are a few selections when it comes to the soup itself-  fat or lean, light/medium/rich same goes for the various toppings. I found the portions to be very large like in Benke Ramen only with larger amounts of pork. I ordered the medium and fat version and found it to be too fat so next time I will opt for the lean one. Overall a yummi experience!

 

Beard Papa’s Cream puffs in Vancouver December 1, 2008

Filed under: Canada,Food,Hidden Gems - Vancouver,Travel,Vancouver Restaurants — lovemyfood @ 7:31 pm

Choux pastry shells filled on the spot with Vanilla custard (real one, I saw the seeds) – yum!  

Cash only =)

Address: 1184 Denman Street

WWW: www.beardpapa.com

 

Benkei Ramen on Robson November 14, 2008

Filed under: Canada,Food,Travel,Vancouver,Vancouver Restaurants — lovemyfood @ 2:03 pm

benke-ramen1This place is always full, so are the few other Ramen places in the vicinity; I always wanted to visit and finally the weather is really suitable for hot soup and we went to check this place out last weekend and I glad we did because it is my new “crave” item :) The menu options are very limited and I liked it – one small restaurant, one specialty! There are three types of broth – Pork, Pork & Chicken with soy and Pork and Chiken with Miso (they also had a spicy miso off the menu, but I do not know if they always do); by definition it comes with noodles and some veggies but there are about 8 (or so) additional topping you can get or choose the option of “all toppings” which is what we did. The portion is very big so be ware, the “all toppings” option includes pork, nori, corn, sprouts, green onions, butter, spinach, boiled egg and kimchi (I do recommend ordering extra pork) and it is delicious!!! They also serve a few small side dishes like Gyozas which were so tender and delicious.

Go, enjoy and then crave to go back :)

Address: 1741 Robson Street   Tel: (604) 688-6790

 

Salsa and Agave Mexican Grill Review October 30, 2008

I have been looking for two things for quite a while –  a good takeout place near my house and a good, no frills, Mexican restaurant with authentic food. I tried Lolita’s on Davie and it was good but it is an “upscale” Mexican food; I tried El Taco on Davie as well and it the food wasn’t so good, it was overpriced and the service was slow slow slow. Salsa and Agave does answer all my prayers though – its not a place to go for dinner as it is rather casual but for a lunch or some takeout in the evening its perfect! It is a family run place, the food is very good, the service is quick and prices are very reasonable. Happy Happy Happy!

Address: 1223 Pacific Blvd the corner of Davie  Tel: 604-408 4228