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The Costco Thread - Ontario - 2014 - October to December

I saw it at the dundas street location....2 large bags (I think one lb each). I forget the price but it was reasonable. But my fridge space is precious so I don't want to get it if it isn't very good!

The Costco Thread - Ontario - 2014 - October to December

Has anyone tried the fresh strozzapreti pasta? I'm tempted as I love this shape, but have resisted the urge as I've usually not fared well with most fresh pasta purchases in the past (they often have a very pronounced eggy taste).

best pastas in Toronto, 2014

YES! I go to terroni for that only. Drake 150 also currently has a mushroom rigatoni with balsamic brown butter that is out of this world.

Zucchini blossoms (squash blossoms) in GTA

I saw them for sale at Lanzarotta's (wholesaler with a small retail front on lakeshore w/ of dixie) earlier this week.

The Costco Thread - Ontario - 2014 - July to September

Plenty of pecornino in the dundas/dixie location. And organic strawberries… 2lb box for 4.99 I think. Going back for more as I know this won't last. Wish Costco would regularly carry more organic produce.

Mimico, New Toronto & Long Branch restaurants - revised thread!

yes…was disappointing unfortunately. Service was great, but my pasta was way overcooked. Food used to be good here, but has really gone downhill in the last year.

Grocery items that you can't find in Toronto (but you can in the states)

trader Joe's frozen chocolaté croissants….soooo good

The Costco Thread - new products, old favourites, interesting items

It's still there...they just moved all the dips (hummus, guac, tzatziki, salsa, etc) to the last aisle of where the cheeses & meats are kept.

Beyond Spinach Nuggets and Zucchini Tots - what else for a toddler's lunchbox

my son loved quesadillas at that age. I would make about 20 at a time using the smaller size flour tortillas with different cheese/veggie/sauce fillings (leek-spinach-tofu, sweet potato-blackbean-corn, mushroom ragout, were fave combos). They freeze and reheat very well.

Jan 20, 2013
chicapea in Home Cooking

The Costco Thread - new products, old favourites, interesting items

Etobicoke location
Staple buys:
Shepherd's greek style feta (the one in the big blue tub),
buffala mozzarella
fior di latte 2 packs (awesome for pizzas)
white linen pasta sauce
fontaine sante roasted garlic hummus
skortadakis tzatziki (though i wish they sold this in a combi pack instead of having to buy 2 of the same variety)
pilaros spanakopita spiral
vidalia/sweet onions
partner's rosemary & olive oil crackers
cranberry/walnut artisan crisps (forget the brand)
asiago wedge
parmesan wedge
portobello caps/slices
kirkland coffee beans (green bag)
kirkland plain greek yogurt

grab when available:
raclette cheese (they had it when i was there last month)
real smoked gouda (not that processed crap they sell at most stores)
pekkle pajama 2 packs for kids

wish they brought back:
agave nectar
bulk packs of garofalo pasta
Kirkland premium tuscan extra-virgin olive oil
balsamic glaze
bergeron le calumet (it's a smoked version of the plain "classique" cheese they sell now)

Restaurant with kids

We've had great experiences at Terroni as well, though i prefer the la bettola location over terroni on queen. Relish was also great...the menu was a little eclectic for my then 4 year old's palate so they made a cheese flatbread pizza for him. Queen margherita pizza is another place i have gone to sans child, but i would go back with him.

best diners/greasy spoons serving breakfast, 2012

i love me some greasy breakfast.. the grille on queensway (e. of east mall) is my fave out in the west end by far.

Vegetarian Restaurant Recommendations

Honestly as a vegetarian i much prefer going to vegetarian-friendly places over strictly vegetarian restaurants. Plus, my friends love their meat so I'd rather eat somewhere everyone can order something they'd really enjoy. A good rustic Italian restaurant will almost always have a at least one or two vegetarian pizzas, pastas, risottos and sides - terroni/La bettola I keep coming back to due to their home-made pastas. Middle-eastern restaurants are also great for vegetarian fare though it's harder to find nicer ones for a special dinner...93 harbord is one that comes to mind. And Lee is always a favourite - their menu has a pretty substantial vegetarian section and the dishes I've had were very good.

Top Chef Canada, Season 2, Episode 6 (spoilers)

lucky for me, my spouse works on the show so I've got an in.

Apr 21, 2012
chicapea in Food Media & News

Top Chef Canada, Season 2, Episode 6 (spoilers)

Well I ate at the "True North" side of resto wars and i quite liked the corn soup! But the wait for the food was indeed too long and now i know why! We were starving by the time our mains came but unfortunately for me, the potato risotto was miniscule in portion. At least it was tasty, with a nice smoky flavour. It would have been good as a component of a main, but it was definitely not an entree dish on its own.
Agree with you OP on Lisa Ray...I think she's doing a really good job. Irks me when I hear people call her a "padma clone" as they really aren't similar at all.

Apr 17, 2012
chicapea in Food Media & News

Saturday night dinner with the girls (30's) any recommendations in King West area?

we do girls nights out in that area regularly. Lee continues to be the favourite. Marben was a close second until it re-invented itself - the menu last time I went had very little to offer for those like myself who don't eat meat. If those are booked up we go to crush or wabora (you can always get a table on short notice at either). Food and service at brassai are not good...avoid! And yes, spice route is awful. Not to mention you end up smelling like a mr. pong's truck when leaving. As for buca I have NEVER been able to score a reservation for 4 or more on a thurs, fri or sat night...even when I check open table well in advance! Is there a secret to doing this?

Luci Restaurant in the former Momo's Bistro space (Queensway & Royal York)

I went a few saturdays ago (had a groupon) and agree with the above. Quality of food was good, portions were large and prices very reasonable. They also have a daily prix fixe special for $25. Unfortunately the place was only 1/3 occupied, so I hope business picks up.

Worst in Toronto

omg I had the absolute worst caprese salad there in my life. they should rename it the CRAPese it was so horrid. cold, pink, mealy slices of tomato, slices of processed mystery white cheese, dried basil and oil that was definitely not derived from olives. ugh...i still shudder at the memory.

Casual dinner on Queen West (w of Bathurst, e of Shaw)

my preferred spot for that area is bar one. dined at rosebud once about a month or so after they opened and the meal was forgettable. Perhaps it was an off night but I haven't returned since.

First date in south etobicoke

Agreed Rocco's is pretty good (I actually had a guy take me there for a first date some years ago). Buuuuut definitely go to the Rocco's on Queensway just west of Parklawn. The one on Islington is more "family-oriented" and I found the food & atmosphere lacking.

ISO Cheap(er) Miso Paste

I like the selection at samko but they're pretty expensive. I just bought some shiro miso there for $20 (it was recommended by the guy there for being lower in sodium than the other brands). I didn't realize it cost that much at the time as I was buying a number of items and in a hurry, but def. got the sticker shock at home!!! also bought some of their 'top shelf' takari mirin for $14, but subsequently found it online for $5.

Indian for Indians

I would avoid little india...frankly I've never had a good indian meal there (and this is from an indian).
For North Indian food, the Host isn't a favourite of mine, but its probably your best centrally-located option. Cuisine of India (in north york) is good but only for tandoori dishes, stay away from the curries.
For south indian dishes, I quite like Madras Palace (one in scarborough, another in richmond hill). Not fancy digs though.

Is there anything you just can't make, no matter how hard you try? [Moved from General Topics board]

poached eggs (if, miraculously, my egg whites don't go stringy away in every directionbs, I still muck it up by totally overcooking the yolk).
and risotto...I always ends up too mushy on the outside and too grainy in the centre.

Oct 30, 2007
chicapea in Home Cooking

What things do you add to your oatmeal to make it interesting?

mmm...I eat it everyday too. Fave additions (AFTER cooked) are a bit of peanut butter, walnuts, dried cranberries and flax meal. I often add chocolate whey protein powder too, esp. if i'm working out that day. However the oatmeal needs to be warm, not hot, b/f making that addition in order to mix well.

Jul 25, 2007
chicapea in Home Cooking

Vegan white sauce?

I've done it many times before using soya milk and soya margarine with good results. The key I find is using a "good" soy milk...by that I mean one that tastes as close to milk as possible after its heated. I find the So Nice brand (refrigerated, original) the best in this regard. Not as easy to find as So Good, but IMO, the latter just doesn't taste right when heated.

Jun 12, 2007
chicapea in Home Cooking

Search for a tasty Vegetarian Chili

I like to use rehydrated TVP or Yves Ground Round. Normally I don't care for this kind of stuff but its a great ground meat replacement in veg chili (and veg moussaka for that matter).A wee bit of chipotle pepper is a must for smoky spice (I just use the canned chipotle in adobo & freeze the remaining...lasts a long time). Also add corn towards the end of cooking. Aside from chile powder/Cumin & other standard seasonings I also add ground coriander. Works much better for a "stew" like recipe than cilantro which I prefer to use as a garnish.

Nov 04, 2006
chicapea in Home Cooking

Not a diet - your small cooking changes that make a big difference?

using broth to help cut down on the amt of fat used in some sauces. Often do this for pasta sauces. Use only a fraction of the amount of butter or oil called for in the recipe, but reserve a good cup or so of the starchy pasta cooking water, stir in a bit of good veggie bouillon and add to sauce just before tossing with pasta. I find this works esp. well for cutting down the oil in pesto like sauces.

also use evaporated milk or table cream for rose sauces instead of whipping cream.

Oct 16, 2006
chicapea in Home Cooking

Brant House, the Drake - How's the food?

avoid eating at Brant. Have been twice. white asaparagus was cooked to consistency of mush. and chef has a penchant for vanilla. he used it in two separate dishes, neither of which were desserts. Just didn't work.

Sri-Lankan Food in Toronto?

2nd madras palace...i know my south indian food and this is the best place to go for it in the city