What are we doing for lunch today?

"Come on guys, it's Friday. Let's go to Upstairs" - T. Koop

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Montreal Eats

Over the holidays I got a chance to hang out in Montreal and check out all the great eats there.

I was inspired by the Quebec epidsode of No Reservations :

So I knew Au Pied de Cochon would be the highlight and we managed to get a reservation on Dec. 30th (the last day of 2008 they are open) at 10:30 pm.

We started off with a lot of pre-drinking and a cheese plate at Reservoir. APDC was packed (of course) when we showed up. It's not a big place, and a real informal party atmosphere.

We started off with some deep fried head cheese terrine (a special that is often available but not on the menu), a a blue-cheese endive salad and something called cochonailles (which is a selection of terrines). For about $6 the cochonailles was a lot of food.

Below are our mains :

from left to right you have: the pied de cochon (with mash and a biscuit), the duck in a can, foie gras putine and the plogue a champlain.

foie gras poutine :

plogue a champlain (which is a pancake topped with bacon, lard, foie gras and maple syrup) :

this was maybe the most memorable dish and most representative of the restaurant. This is the aftermath, me managed to finish everything except the pied :

Considering the legendary reputation of the place, it is pretty cheap - $200 for three including drinks (before tip).

Even though we were still reeling the next day (New Year's Eve), we hit up Schwartz's for the famous smoked meat. Almost all the time there is a line up outside, so we were in for a 30 min. wait in -20 deg. C weather :

once inside I ordered a smoked meat platter (extra fatty), which for $10 gives you a stack of bread and enough meat for three sandwiches - an insane deal.

It was very good of course, but I honestly can't say it's better than Caplansky in Toronto (I know, I know).

I don't have a lot to say about our New Year's dinner at a place called Raclette, but the next day we made it to La Banquise, which is the sort of potine headquarters and had some real Quebcois food. Below you see a Michigan red hot (a hot dog smothered in tomato meat sauce) and a classic poutine.

Both tasted pretty good at the time. One of our friends ordered a chicken sandwich which comes topped with gravy and canned peas :

this type of food is basically extinct in Toronto, but it would be nice to have once in a while.


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Cuy (Guinea Pig) in Cusco, Peru

Very popular dish in Peru. They eat it all: including the brain and eyeballs. Not much meat on these guys (not much fat either) - you'd need to eat a whole family to fill up, I think. The brain tasted like brain and the eyeballs a bit like flavourless cheese.

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Monday, June 30, 2008

Labios Lounge

  • questionable name
  • pupusas 2$
  • burrito 10$
  • pretty tasty


Monday, March 17, 2008

Scrambled Eggs - Gordon Ramsay Style

I love watching foul-mouth Scottish Michelin star chef Gordon Ramsay and he's a good inspiration for trying new recipes (but that's for another posting).

I was never big on eggs, but I saw this version of scrambled eggs that he makes here and now I make this all the time. Pretty cheap and it makes a nice light lunch or supper.

Butter adds a nice richness to the eggs, and he uses creme fraiche at the end, but I simply substituted mayonnaise. I love it on toast and spice it up a bit with whatever spice suits my mood (dill or chili powder).

But it was pointed out to me, that the result is basically egg salad.


Thursday, March 13, 2008

Baked Whitefish

This is something I do a lot, and it's inspired by the baked cod they make at Portuguese places.

Here I started with some frozen basa fillets. Basa is cheap, but tasty and it's usually sold frozen but it tastes fine.

On the frozen slabs of fish I put
-onions (skinny slivers are best)
-olive oil
-spices (marjoram in this case)
-lemon juice
-capers (optional)

and simply bake for 20 minutes. The onion should become a bit charred an impart a nice flavour. You can change up the spices for different flavours if you're into it.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Christmas at the Stelzer's

I have no idea why Oliver and Bernd decided to leave Germany. With cooking like this, I would just stay in Ellwangen the rest of my life! Schupfnudeln, Sauerkraut, smoked ham, other German delights.....makes for a good German Christmas!

Frau Stelzer, I am a big fan!!!


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

More rolling your own

A while ago I developed what was a pretty good burger recipe.

This week when I went to Nosso Talho, the prices were dirt cheap (chicken 78c/lb. ground beef .99c) I came home with enough meat for seven or eight meals.

So this is a quick way to make some burgers for later, when you're a bit too strapped for time (or too lazy) to really cook.

I make up the meat into balls :

and stack'em in an tupperware, with wax paper between them.

I don't even have to squish them down, the lid does that and I toss it into the freezer. Six burgers ready to go ... cost ? about $1.00, and without all the dubious stuff that might be in store bought patties.