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TorontoTuna's Profile

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Where to get Great 'Fruit Cake' in town?!

For a really exceptional Fruit Cake, I order online from this great Quebec joint. Thick with all manner of nuts and fruits, one year old, and swimming in rum and brandy (no L.C.B.O. nanny cops)

Brands of peanut oil (toronto, ONT)

Totally agree about Lion & Globe. I make a mean buttermilk fried chicken and when I stopped using my own,rendered lard and tried this oil, the peanut back taste really made it pretty amazing. Also, in a stir-fry, this is THE oil to use.

Do you know where to buy flageolet beans in Toronto?

Rube's at S.L.M. always have them and due to a high turnover, his rice and beans are always fresh. And b.t.w., I really miss the old guy; patronized his little stand for forty years and never met a kinder soul or one more knowledgeable of his stock. R.I.P.

Eggs from European Chickens

Here's the duck eggs from my Sunday brunch. More nutrition than chicken eggs and WAY tastier.

Eggs from European Chickens

You want THE best eggs, from free roaming bug eaten' birds, with orange yolks and a high concentration of albumin (best for baking). Forget the chicken and go for the duck eggs. Best at the North market at S.L.M. on Saturdays. Why anyone would eat chicken eggs after a taste of these beauties is beyond me.

Might be the 'Best Tasting' Dark Chocolate Ice cream out there??!!

Best all natural dark chocolate ice cream bar is at Sweet Olenka's. They do a dark chocolate-ginger bar, covered with their own chocolate glaze that is a religious experience.

Weezies for sale

Food's decent comfort food and along with Gilead, its been a local go-to. However, if you dine by the front door in the Winter, hyperthermia will ensue. Another local great spot, The Berkeley, just closed as well.

Schnitzel Queen ???

The Schnitzel is, quite literally...and I do know the definition of literally... the size of a frisbee! The bun they serve it on is not up to the task, so I usually tell them to cut the critter in quarters and put half on two buns, with only fresh lemon juice. If I eat it all I have scant room for dinner and my long suffering wife looks at me askance and accuses me of lunching at the 'Queen'. Denials go a glimmering.

LCBO Vintages Sept 27 release, some notes

Jeepers! I love Wiccan winos!

LCBO Vintages Sept 27 release, some notes

Hey, it has no value other than to visit your bottles. Other than champagne it has no value, but the ritual party at the beginning of a new season to stare at the labels and open a few makes the absurdity worth the bother. Cheers.

LCBO Vintages Sept 27 release, some notes

Well, never considered the mold thing. My cellar, however, has a continuous loop of Chopin and Mozart to calm the restless enzymes.

LCBO Vintages Sept 27 release, some notes

70% has always been the standard. Vibration is important as well, so keep jackhammers at bay and turn the girls every four months (wine in my mind being of the feminine persuasion.)

LCBO Vintages Sept 27 release, some notes

Every source I have ever consulted says that the ideal temperature for the cellar is 55 degrees, or between 53 and 59. Too hot and the wine breaks down and too cold...35 degrees?...your corks shrink and dry out, seeping into the wine. I just received a reply to a query about cellar temperature from my vintner friends in Tuscany. Their cellars are kept at 10 to 12 degrees celsius...or about 55 degrees. When one of them says my vintage is still too green, I listen.

LCBO Vintages Sept 27 release, some notes

Three things-
Make damn sure your cellar is of a uniform temperature. I keep my wine in a black cellar, in clay tubes, at a constant 55f temperature year round, turning them at the beginning of each season.

Secondly, keep in touch with the vineyards re your expensive stock. The wine growers keep back their good vintages and will let you know if the wine is ready. I have two vintners in Montalcino I regularly communicate with re their fine Brunellos,and they, like most vintners, are pleased to discuss their offspring.

Thirdly, get several agents to source your wine and to get to know your tastes. I recently purchased a divine 1946 Sherry, as the agent knew of my passion for this Spanish treasure. (It will cellar until 2060, but my kids won't see it.)

Wine discussion from LCBO

As a card carrying oenophile with a cellar of nearly 400 bottles, let me wade in on this. With the exception of some lovely Pinot Noirs, the reds here are pretty much wanting. However, the whites are exceptional and our cold climate Chardonnays and Rieslings are really top drawer. The really exceptional vintages, like the 09' Nuet Blanche from Hidden Bench, are not given to the gov/pigs at the L.C.B.O., but can only be found at the vineyard or finer restaurants. I suggest a visit to both Hidden Bench near St. Cath. and Norman Hardy in the county in order to sample the finer whites. I buy all my Ontario wine in bulk from my twelve go-to Ontario wineries and never set foot in an L.C.B.O. I deal with three knowledgeable wine agents who can get me about anything. I agree that buying local just for political reasons is absurd, but there are some great local wines here which should not be missed. So get in your car, drive down to Niagara or P.E. county, get to know the vintners and sample some wine not available in the Commie liquor stores.

Bone Marrow Burgers?

Put it on the Green Egg in a baking pan at 180 degrees over maple chips for a few hours, then spoon it out and refrigerate 'till it hardens up. Work it into your ground sirloin with the spices. It is fat, but like good suet, rare ground steak is moistened by this treat and the smoke really kicks.

Bone Marrow Burgers?

After getting tired of dried out meatballs, I began adding smoked marrow to same. Amazing! I told one of the guys at 'Hey Meatball' about it and said they would give it a try.

Mushrooms are up!

Great year for mushrooms. I got over 15 pounds of yellow Morels in the Spring and am now picking Parasols and giant Puffballs (great dried for soup!) I see very few Porcinis at my farm near Tweed, though I have several dozen Blue Spruce. What part of Ontario did you find them?

ISO Chianina beef

Dario Cecchini in chianti has the real deal, both at his famous butcher shop and his restaurant across the street. I bought two 3 inchers in 2009...not cheap but real Chianina. If you're in the small town, make sure you get the 11 course, all-beef feast in his restaurant.

ISO potato hot-dog buns.

I've given up searching for a real Coney-Dog this side of Michigan, but don't mind making my own sauce. What really sets off a Coney, however, is a steamed potato bun. Is there any bakery in the G.T.A. who makes these? A potato bun on a burger or dog is a real plus. By the way, the all-pork Berkshire dogs at Cumbraes really rock.

Sour Cherries

I do the same...but use ground tapioca as a thickener in everything. Cornstarch is too much like Chinese take-out.

Jun 21, 2014
TorontoTuna in Home Cooking

Where can you buy Dairyland 3.25% Buttermilk in (Toronto,ON)

...and by the way, Harmony is 3.8%...richer than Dairyland, which I had in Banff.

Where can you buy Dairyland 3.25% Buttermilk in (Toronto,ON)

I use buttermilk in everything...from biscuits to pancakes to fried chicken.. Harmony is the real McCoy. My grandparents ran a dairy farm, so I know from buttermilk.

What to do with a goat or two...

My Moroccan wife loves goat and here is a great recipe in the North African tradition.

Jun 21, 2014
TorontoTuna in Home Cooking

Where can you buy Dairyland 3.25% Buttermilk in (Toronto,ON)

Harmony dairy has whole, organic buttermilk. Their web site will give you a listing of their stores. 1% really sucks!

necessary to remove chicken giblets?

I 'beer can' my bird on my Green Egg, so no room in the cavity for the offal. However, I chop the innards up, add six oysters, a cup of fresh sourdough, a handful of fresh herbs, sea salt, ground Tellicherry and lots of cultured butter and put all this in foil as I cook the bird. Yum!

Jun 21, 2014
TorontoTuna in Home Cooking

Anybody remember Switzers on Spadina?

Friday night with the old gang was Corned Beef and Dills at Switzers, then the Victory Burlesque across the street for the great pit band and comics (not!), then Grossman's for bad beer and Blues and then the Silver Dollar for a nightcap and more good sounds. All within three blocks. Spadina back then really was the real deal.

Where can I find fresh Crawfish for a traditional boil?

I grew up in Indiana and have eaten bushels of the mud-bugs. Find a rocky stream and get buddy and a seine net and a few chicken livers and you will bag tons of 'em. But I am now into spot prawns big time and they are every bit as tasty as the crawdad. The fish guys at St. Lawrence have them live and kicken'.

Best Doughnuts/Donuts in Toronto: 2014

Although I consider the elusive Toronto Spudnut akin to the communal wafer, I feel rather effusive after bagging a wild turkey on Monday and will thus share an actual path to a doughnut ritual that will inspire. Travel to Epi on a Saturday morning and be there when they open. Their just-out-of-the-oven jelly doughnuts will await you. Grab a coffee and a stool overlooking Bayview. Now take that first bite. Like putting one's lips to an angel's wing.

ISO of catfish fillet in Vaughan or even Toronto if there is no place in Vaughan

Farmed catfish are not all that tasty. Try Hooked for some good line-caught catfish (and perch), or else get a bamboo pole and some chicken livers and go out around midnight to the many rivers east of you and catch some lunkers.