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Friday, September 6, 2013

The Week in Yum Aug 31- Sept 6

Friday night back to Xola in The Beach.

I so want this place to thrive and stay in the beach and it warms my heart to see it packed every evening so I really hope that they are getting repeat business. I have been three times and each time there was something wrong and that breaks me heart. Last night I had to send my margarita back because it was so sour I couldn't drink it and at $9/drink, I want to be able to love it. The sangria I got instead was so delicious that if I were alone I might have ordered a pitcher to myself and called it dinner but I really hate having to send something back and it starts things off on a bad footing.

The food was great and the portions are enough for me but The Kid and Shack both left hungry - maybe if they threw in the rice and black beans which cost next to nothing to make, it would round the meal out and make it more filling. As it stands now, adding rice and beans will ding me $4, added to the $15  tacos and if you want more tortillas (some people like to double up on them so they don't fall apart), that's another $2. Suddenly you find yourself with a $19+ entree and, knowing The Beach, people expect to waddle away from the table with a broken zipper after spending $20 pp before drinks or apps.

Don't get me wrong, I love the food and I don't mind slowish service but I am afraid the downfall will be the money spent to fill me up ratio and that breaks me heart.





Saturday brought about a day I have been waiting for for almost a decade - an invitation arrived to join the Dickey family to help them make their famous Dickey's Dills! I could barely contain myself and if you have ever had the good fortune to taste one of these pickles, you would understand my glee. I now have my own stash of dickey's dills in my pantry and in about 6 week I am going to be a very popular girl indeed.




Sunday Taco Del Mar in Wasaga Beach. It was good going down but it turned out to be in my body for a good time, not a long time if you know what I am saying.

Monday was a holiday so the only things open are usually asian restaurants so we ventured out for a late dim sum but it seems that about 5 million other Torontonians had the same idea. We ended up at The Pickle Barrel in Scarborough (at least I think that's where we were and it doesn't matter because the food is the same at all of them) and I was very happy to eat three perfectly poached eggs with nice whole grain toast and a potato latke. It's always good to know places where you can go for something that is tasty and dependable and will never let you down. It might have been the most adventurous brunch I have ever had but it did the trick. Because it took so long to find a place to eat, we found ourselves in another late lunch dilemma and only The Kid found himself hungry again around 7pm. School was starting the next day, Shack starts a new movie and life will go back to some sort of normal schedule so I am hoping that this will be the end of eating one big meal at 3 or 4 pm every day.


Tuesday I made Vietnamese BBQ pork (mostly so I would have leftovers for The Kid's first high school lunch) and all that is right and good was restored in our world. This was a bit of a big deal for me because I don't generally bbq on my own - I can never really get the hang of starting a good charcoal fire and it seems like so much work to grill a couple of pieces of fish for just The Kid and I but this time I sucked it up and put on my big girl panties and got it done. Like a boss.


On Wednesday I joined Isabelle from Crumb , Robyn from Planet Byn and a brand new transplant from Vancouver, Megan of Healthy Roots to welcome Lyndsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller of Feast- An Edible Road Trip to Toronto. These two women have teamed up to take a road trip across the country in search of Canadian food stories. In their own words:

"From coast to coast, we’ll share the FEAST road trip through writing, interviews, recipes, photography, and video.  FEAST will tell stories of everyday Canadians, particularly those who make and find our food: farmers, fishers, chefs, hunters, foragers, home cooks, camp cooks, chefs, wine-makers, cheese-makers, beer-makers, roadside café owners, bakers, beekeepers, food bloggers, coffee roasters, and more.  From north to south, rural to metropolitan, we’ll show off Canadian food, this country’s diverse culture, and its ever-changing landscape. "

How cool is that? We all had a couple of beers and some food together and shared stories about their trip, our lives and food. Their next stop is Prince Edward Country on their way to Montreal and we wish them safe travels, full tummies and exiting adventures!
Oh and poutine! I wish them much poutine.


Dana, Lyndsay and Isabelle 

 I was pretty exited to meet up with all of these fine ladies at the Bellwoods Brewery on Ossington because I like to meet up with fine ladies AND I have walked by this place so many times and gazed wistfully at people drinking delicious looking beers and eating tasty food on one of the most inviting patios in the city. There is always a line up so we never stop in but last night not only did we get in but we were given a table right at the front of the patio so I could finally be one of those people I had envied in the past. 


hibiscus wheat beer oh my
I am not a huge beer girl but I loved the Rosee D'Hibiscus from Dieu do Ciel! in Quebec so much that I had two. The muted red colour was immediately appealing to me and the taste of this wheat beer was faintly floral, a bid acidic and kind of bubbly - this is a beer I would go back for in a hot minute. You would have assumed that none of us had eaten in a month by the way we all devoured our crispy, herbed fries with siracha mayo and I wish I had ordered another bowl of fries instead of having the korean wings. One of the things that makes a korean wing so delectable is the fact that they are deep fried twice until they are shatteringly crispy so that even after being tossed in the sticky gochujang sauce, they stay crunchy. I cannot abide by a wiggly skinned wing and these wings were wiggly skinned. My friend, Robyn, liked them but I only ate one and by ate I really mean I licked the sauce off, discarded the skin and picked at the meat. Everything else looked delicious and there were no scraps left on any plates so I assume the food was really good all around






charred corn chowder - recipe coming soon

Thursday I made a big batch of delicious charred corn chowder with my current lover, preserved lemon and the evening led us toFratelli's on Old Kingston Rd in Scarborough to have dinner with a friend and her just about, almost 1 year old. I was absolutely starving after spending the day with a migraine and a destroyed neck and so the bowl of RIDONKULOUSLY DELICIOUS linguine with clams in a garlicky buttery sauce lasted about 3 minutes and I honestly could have eaten at least one more bowl of it. 

Shack was happy with his standard fare, veal parmesan except he likes to have his accompanying pasta to be sauced with bolognese instead of plain tomato. It was going to be an extra $10 to do that which is kind of crazy pants but it was still good and he finished his plate and there is really no need for meat sauce with your meat (don't tell him I told you that though).  It's kind of old school and it's certainly not handy if you live downtown but if you find yourself in the eastern wilds of the city, the food is certainly delicious and it will make you happier than most things you can eat out there. 

All in all, one of the best weeks in Yum for ages and I give it two forks up.


My favourite pin of the week:  food can't be serious all the time

My favourite instagram of the week: I almost ate my phone when I saw this

My favourite facebook share of the week:  again, food has to be fun

My favourite food find of the week:  You can hull a strawberry with a straw!

My favourite tweet of the week: