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Posts Tagged ‘eat local’

Cuban inspired restaurant in Vancouver? You don’t see many of them around, but there’s one right in Mount Pleasant. Tocador opened just last year and it’s all about the cocktail menu and share plates. I actually had the pleasure to interview one of its co-owners, Guy, a few years ago. This time, I was invited to sample the menu at Tocador.

Cocktails

First of all, let’s talk about its cocktail menu. It’s two pages long! One page is full of the classics, such as Negroni, Mojito, Hot Buttered Rum, Manhattan and Mai Tai. The other, is a list of original cocktails created by the team at Tocador. The two owners both started out as a bartender so it only makes sense that they pay a lot of attention to the cocktail menu. They infuse a lot of their liquors so you would see something like mango butter infused rum, red bell pepper infused mezcal and paprika infused tequila.

The Escocesa, for example, uses beet infused Dewars scotch.

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Now that summer is behind us, it’s time to celebrate the bounty of fall stone fruit such as peaches and apples. With our trip to the Okanagan, we of course bought some gorgeous peaches. And what do you do when you have a lot to go through? You can freeze them, canned them, give them away…for us, we made pie!

Recipe

I have shared the Simple Pie Crust Recipe with you before and sure enough I used it for my crust. The recipe will make a double crust for a 9in pie, plus some depending on how thin you roll it.

Peach Pie (Before)

Ingredients

For the filling, we used:

  • 2lb Fresh Peaches (roughly 5 large peaches)
  • 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 3 tablespoons All Purpose Flour
  • 2-3 tablespoon Unsalted Butter
  • 1/8 teaspoon Salt

Preparation (more…)

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If you have been keeping track, you would know that we are just one day away from White Spot’s annual Pirate Pak Day. Tomorrow, and tomorrow only, August 13, 2014, White Spot will once again make available its popular Adult Pirate Paks.

Unleash your inner child on this day and indulge in classic Pirate Pak items including the Legendary Burger, Bacon Cheddar Bigger Burger and BC Chicken Burger. For each Pirate Pak sold, White Spot will donate $2 to Zajac Ranch for Children. To-date they have raised close to 269,000 for Zajac Ranch through this initiative!

The special edition “Adult Pak” is only available on August 13 and starts at $11.99. (more…)

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[UPDATE: Our partner has generously donated another $25 gift card so we are now giving away 3 White Spot gift cards! Deadline has been extended to Monday, August 4, 2014]

Summer has officially started, which means our local farms are also busy harvesting. BC produces a huge variety of fresh ingredients — cherries, blueberries, apples, peaches, corn, cheese, salmon, tomatoes, etc. — everything is so close to home! Earlier this week White Spot launched its new Celebrate BC summer menu to celebrate exactly that, featuring local ingredients and select wines from farms and vineyards around the province.

Available until September 7, the Celebrate BC menu offers six seasonally-inspired creations:

  • Prawn & BC Brie Flatbread
  • Candied Salmon Spinach Salad
  • BC Beet, Brie & Bacon Bigger Burger
  • Gala Apple & BC Brie Chicken Burger
  • Lois Lake Steelhead with Warm Crispy BC Potato Salad
  • Legendary Burger, Caesar Salad & Fresh BC Blueberry Pie Combo

To make sure you get to try these items, we are giving away three $25 White Spot gift cards. Yes, three chances of winning!

3 ways to enter

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March 20 will be declared BC Veggie Day in a special proclamation to celebrate the annual springtime arrival of locally greenhouse grown vegetables from BC’s 42 greenhouse growers located throughout the Lower Mainland. There will be a celebration party at the Vancouver Art Gallery from 11am to 2pm on that day.

BC Veggie Day on March 20 (Photo from BC Veggie Day website)

BC Veggie Day on March 20 (Photo from BC Veggie Day website)

I’m quite excited about this campaign because this is very close to my heart. Watching the campaign video and familiar faces of local growers brought back memories of my work in the greenhouse vegetable industry, marketing and educating the public about this industry. It opened my eyes about greenhouse vegetable production, the zero use of herbicides, pest control using an integrated pest management program, the extended availability of product, and the superb quality of product thanks to the perfect climate inside a greenhouse. I learned that greenhouse vegetables are just as good as organic and you don’t have to pay a premium for them.

At the Vancouver Art Gallery North Plaza on March 20, there will be a pop-up greenhouse filled with plants and “good” bugs from the Bug Factory, a farmer’s market, live entertainment, a first ever pop-up restaurant by Earls and food trucks Verinicey Pankoras and Mangal Kiss. For more information, visit bcgreenhousegrown.com.

I will see you there!

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As part of the birthday festivities, my family and I went to Edible Canada at the Market. I have been wanting to eat there since Edible Canada moved out of the Granville Market to a stand-alone location.

Edible Canada at the Market Bistro

Edible Canada at the Market Bistro

Food

The menu looked really interesting, with a good variety of dishes offering something for everyone. The four of us decided to share two appetizers and ordered an entree each.

The first appy that we shared was the Alberta Bison Meatballs. Interesting choice of using a rather lean type of meat to make meatballs! The meatballs needed a bit more fat, but the gravy made up for moisture. The gravy was rich and luscious, combining with the meatballs it would make a very good pasta sauce. The shoestring potatoes added another layer of texture with some crunch.

Alberta Bison Meatballs

Alberta Bison Meatballs – cooked medium, crispy shoestring potatoes, lingonberry gravy, fresh herbs

We ordered Helmi’s Potato & Cheese Perogies simply because we saw it at our neighbour’s table and it looked amazing! It tasted really good too! I’m not really a huge perogy fans because I don’t eat very much carbs, but I quite enjoyed this one. I liked that it was pan-seared with a crispy exterior, and the Kielbasa sausage added some savouriness and meat to this dish. Eating this alone can actually make it an entree plate, but sharing among the 4 of us was perfect as an appy.

Helmi's Potato & Cheese Perogies

Helmi’s Potato & Cheese Perogies – Kielbasa sausage, caramelized onions, sour cream, grainy mustard honey vinaigrette

For entree, I ordered the Rangeland Leg of Elk. (more…)

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