Last Saturday I made some nanaimo bars, and modified the recipe again, splitting it into two pans this time, and doubling the amount of middle layer. I wasn't able to whip it though (no electric mixer) so I stuck it in the microwave instead hoping to soften it enough to whip but melted it instead and had to pour it in lol. It turned out ok anyways. And I used store-bought graham crackers. The bars were thinner this time, which was good, but I forgot to put the cinnamon in on top of the middle layer so I had to sprinkle it on top and it wasn't as good. Probably cause my cinnamon sucks lol. I'm gonna go to that spice shop this weekend and get some more :D
Then I ran off to my friend Sonia's place for her birthday party, and brought her a pan of nanaimo bars.
Here's her cat Sonny:
Here's me with her chinchilla, Chipmunk:
I'm looking all proud because it took me 15 minutes of standing in front of his cage with my hands outstretched in front of the open door for him to finally run up my arm lol.
Here we all are on her bed:
Chipmunk again, chewing on my glasses lol. My glasses have now been chewed on by a miniature poodle, cats, AND a chinchilla! It's a miracle they're still in one piece lolll:
Her friend Mathieu and her:
And here's all of us on the couch again:
Was fun, hadn't seen her in a year or so. We listened to music, talked, had some Frangelico and nanaimo bars, then had dinner and some more drinks.
On Sunday after church I went to Chinatown for some pastries and then met up with Carlo, who I also hadn't seen in about a year. We took the bus to the Tamtam for some LARPing although I didn't participate, I just sat, soaked up some sun, had a gin & tonic and guarded the stuff. When we got there Carlo introduced me to all his friends, and I offered them all some egg tarts I had picked up in Chinatown. I was rewarded with access to Elias' chair for the rest of the afternoon lol. It's easy to fit into a new group when you bring asian pastries with you :P
Here's the alley behind the Anglican church whose basement my parish rents for our church:
Here's the construction in front of the church:
Here are two of Carlo's friends at the tamtams, Richard and Elias, and Vincent in the chair:
And here's Carlo, Richard and Elias:
I almost put on Elias' shoulder plates to take a pic of me in them when he took them off but decided not to. I think I'll do it this weekend though if I have a chance.
And some larping:
At about 4:15 me & Carlo left, him to work and me to Steph's place for us to go to the Smokemeat Pete's with his roommate Jen and her friend Lea.
After stuffing our faces we went to the Dairy Queen right across the street, then rolled ourselves back to the car and went back to Steph's place. When we got back we watched How to Train Your Dragon, and I loved it :D
And that was my weekend. It always bugs me how I never have time to post about what I did on the weekend until Friday, but whatever. Go watch that movie people! It's great :D
This morning I'm thinking again about how I want to eventually find myself a job having to do with food, working in the spice shop being the most interesting idea at the moment. I started thinking about this again after an "evaluation" and finding out I can't work from home cause I make too many mistakes. Oh well. It just means I'll have more money after I move since my rent will go down and my paycheck will stay the same.
Wow. I just stumbled across an bunch of amazing articles (this one in particular) about spices. It really amazed me to learn of the quality of spices in the supermarkets and all the other information about them. I can't wait to go to Epices et Olives! I don't think I'll just throw out all my spices, but I'll definitely buy some new ones.
Man I want to quit my job and go work there now too! :P I've composed a cover letter for my cv gushing spice enthusiasm lol. But I'm a bit caffeinated today so I'll sleep on it before making any rash decisions :P
I've never known what I wanted to do in life, I've never had a specific calling. But in the past year or so I've been slowly realizing that if ever I would have to pick a trade to spend my life in it would be something to do with food. As of yet I didn't know which domain within the realm of the food industry though. But in reading about their amazing store it just makes sense to me that I want to work in that store because spices are the... essential element, the base, the foundation and soul of a recipe, of food in general. You can't do without.
Some of my best childhood memories are of smelling the spices in my mom's spice rack and savoring each different aroma. I also grew up helping my mom cook, and she always used herbs and spices and I picked up that habit of wanting to add something else to my food, not leave it plain. Just today as I was eating the nanaimo bars I made I was wondering to myself, "hmmm this is missing something" and I realized I had forgotten the cinnamon! So I'll have to go sprinkle some on top next time I eat some. The original recipe didn't call for cinnamon but I decided to add some the first time I made it and it was so good! I love to add new things and mix them up and see what happens.
Oh and I have to find out how much they (the owners of Epices & Olives) charges for his cooking classes too!
This was the most fun weekend I've had since I can't remember when. I actually got out and saw people! I saw people I hadn't seen in a long time, and met new people too, which hadn't happened in a long time either. I'll write more about it once I have time to put the pictures up.
Ugh I'm just so sick of hearing the top-40 music from my coworkers radio. That's one of the reasons I'm really looking forward to finding out if I'll be chosen to be part of the pilot project for working from home.
Me & Mat went to the Lotus Bleuagain last night. Lol I think it's starting to become a Friday-night ritual for us :P.
I took a picture of the seedy little asian store across the street. Will have to go in there sometime to check it out:
Here's the menu, with our choices circled. It turned out they didn't have the twice-sauteed pork or the pork and chives dumplings so we got the stewed beef and the pork and chinese cabbage dumplings instead:
Mat eating with chopsticks:
I'm so proud! :D This is the guy who NEVER tries anything new. Lol I'm glad they didn't have the twice-sauteed pork on the menu, it forced him to try something else! :P Ok he ended up not liking the beef, but at least he tried it! Now if only I could convince him to try the lamb soup...
Here's the edible fungus:
It was crunchy and didn't have much flavor, and the texture was weird, but I liked it :) Mat wouldn't touch it of course :P
Here are the dumplings, they were really yummy:
And the stewed beef, which had the same seasonings as the sheep's stomach so it tasted the same except it was beef:
It was served cold since it was an appetizer, and Mat didn't like it much because there was too much fat in it. I explained to him that in Chinese cuisine the fat and chewy bits are prized and considered delicious as well as the meat.
I also went to the depanneur (convenience store) beside to take out some cash and ended up buying some Mystery Seasoning:
There were only two of these on the shelf, just like that, no seal or cover, with no label underneath, nothing lol. It was so random! I asked the guy what it was and he said he didn't know how to explain it, it was a seasoning, like for soups and other stuff. So I said ok and bought it just cause it was so weird lol. When I tasted it it didn't taste much, and I spat it out for fear it was something other than seasoning, what, I don't know lol. My dad joked and said maybe it was some sort of illegal aphrodisiac lollll:P
This morning I got up and was greeted with sunshine! :D I love sun. Here's the view from my bedroom:
And the view from my livingroom:
Ok today I have lots of stuff to do, check what time the grocery store and the post office open, eat breakfast, take a shower, go to the grocery store to buy ingredients for more Scottish shortbread and Nanaimo bars to make for Sonia for her birthday, then to the post office, then go home and make all the goodies and then leave for Sonia's place at around 3pm to visit for a while, then come home, have dinner and do laundry and other cleaning, and some internet. Phew!
Ok I can't remember the last time something I invented BLEW MY MIND like this with how GOOD it was!!!
So I was staring into the fridge. And I knew I wanted to use up some bacon. And I figured I should use some eggs too, but I didn't want to make plain bacon & eggs cause I've been making that a lot lately. Then I spotted the bowl of leftover guacamole seasoning + kraft cheese powder sitting there. AHA! I would mix the cheese/salsa stuff with the eggs, and make an omelette, and have it on toast with the bacon!
So that's what I did. Here's my mise en place:
Then made some bacon:
Then whisked together my two eggs with about 2 heaping tablespoons of salsa/cheese mix, some dried basil, and fried in some bacon fat. It didn't hold together much but it didn't matter, I just scooped it onto my toast anyways:
I had to put the lid on the pan to get it to set properly:
I made some toast with good bread, let it cool, then spread with plenty of real mayo, ground some white pepper on it, sprinkled some smoked salt, then put the omelette on top with the bacon and cut it in half. AMAAAAAZINGNESS!!!
I had been meaning to make this for a while now. So I finally busted out and made it. I took 1 ripe avocado, some guacamole seasoning, about half a packet of kraft dried cheese powder and some chopped pickles, and mashed it all up:
Then put it on some buttered toast and it was SO GOOD!!!:
Then I tried mixing the rest of the cheese powder with just the guacamole seasoning but it didn't turn out as yummy, it was too strong, but I put some saran wrap on the bowl and stuck it in the fridge to figure out what to do with it later:
And then I promptly finished off the rest of the guacamole: