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Crack Pie Recipe

It is a very rich and sweet pie. The filling is gooey and there's a nice texturally pleasing crispiness and toasted flavour from the oatmeal crust.
For those uncertain about whether they will like this pie, I would recommend halving the ingredients and just making one rather than the two suggested ( I used the LA Times Recipe)
A thin sliver will be more than sufficient (or if you're like me.. several!) I usually like a pie wedge dolloped with some creme fraiche.

Cheers!
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com/201...

Jan 30, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

southern cooks: what is "ground red pepper"?

This was listed on a rub recipe I am going to make. At first I thought it was pulverized chili flakes or something. Thanks so much for the clarification!

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Jan 30, 2011
sugarcube in General Topics

MacEwan: is it worth the drive to Don Mills?

No, unless you're in the area I would not recommend making the trek all the way over to McEwan's. Anything you can find at this grocery store you can get at Pusateri's or Whole Foods. Also, for meats I would head to the Healthy Butcher or Cumbrae's instead (prices are more reasonable)

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The Healthy Butcher
565 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M5V, CA

Cumbrae's
481 Church St, Toronto, ON M4Y, CA

Pusateri's
1539 Avenue Rd, Toronto, ON M5M, CA

Winterlicious LOVE only - Where are the MUST eats?

Had good meals at Panagea, Canoe, and North 44 before. I would also vouch for Mildred's but not the space itself.haha. too industrial feeling.
We just came from a Winterlicious meal at Quince. If it is on your maybe list, I would not recommend it. It was quite a letdown. The food was not very flavourful and the portions were inconsistent.. but I won't divulge anymore because I know this is the 'love Winterlicious' thread.

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North 44
2537 Yonge St., Toronto, ON M4P 2H9, CA

FRESH DONUTS IN TORONTO

oooh.. 24 hours? Hooray!
Do they offer any other goodies? What about coffee/drinks?

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Origin - review

Although we're in the minority, I also agree with those of you who did not have an enjoyable experience.
Many of the dishes were lacklustre and those that did stand out were not very unique, taste-wise.

For instance, after reading so much about the duck wrap, while it tasted delicious, it was nothing spectacular-- just executed well. If you head into any good Chinese restaurant, you can get this same type of dish (not to mention, several more helpings), as well as a duck lettuce wrap they typically include with your order.

We found the tostones flat in flavour. They were definitely nice and crispy but aside from that, they did not have much else going for it. The guacamole was a winner but no one goes to Origin just to rave about that.

The grilled rock hen +harissa that I had read so much about had been changed to a hunter's style tomato based sauce. No doubt, the meat was succulent but I didn't prefer the new flavour profile. It was too acidic for my tastes.

Our last main was the chorizo + manchego rice dish. It was the least appetizing looking, but inspite of its appearance it tasted quite delicious; it was rich no doubt, but we were told this by our server when we ordered it. The chorizo was slightly chewy, had a nice char, and smoky flavour with a subtle spiciness. While they tried to make the dish 'fun and interactive', all it really did was make our plate look messy and us like slobbish diners. Since the rice had a lot going on (cheese and runny poached egg), the olives and salsa verde were a bit of an afterthought. We only remembered to stir it in half-way through consuming the dish.

We're unlikely to return to this place simply because it was quite costly (well, to clarify, the dishes that were interesting and what we felt to be unique to Origin were) and the flavours were not memorable.

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com/201...

Beast Restaurant

What did you order? Really want to try this restaurant but because everything looks so good.. it's hard to decide!

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Whitby/Durham restaurants that don't suck

Thanks for the information Helenrist. I'll make sure to try it next time I'm in the area.
Cheers!

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Whitby/Durham restaurants that don't suck

We were in the area the other night and tried the mammoth clamshell of a panzerotti at Pino's. It was filled to the brim with our 3 fillings of choice as well as tomato sauce, and what I suspect was a pound of mozzarella cheese. It tasted perfect with the crust which was so light, fluffy, and flavourful.

We also ordered a small garlic pizza, which was quite a letdown. The garlic base was much too light and I was quite a bit disappointed at how little flavour there was in general. The pizza crust here wasn't as thick either. It was flat and quite lifeless.
The panzerotti was the definite winner of the evening.

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com/

Whitby/Durham restaurants that don't suck

Thank you! Hopefully I can convince my friend to eat here tomorrow even though she is requesting something "light" lol.

Whitby/Durham restaurants that don't suck

Hi BamiaWruz,

Is it a ranch dipping sauce or used as a base on the pizza? If so, which one is it?
Thick crust pizzas are my favourite so this place sounds like it will fit the bill nicely.
Thanks for your help and comments on Pino's!

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com/

Whitby/Durham restaurants that don't suck

Thanks for your suggestions TexSquared. I look forward to trying this place.
Have you tried the garlic or pesto pizza before? Those have piqued my interest.
Also, I appreciate the heads up on the cheese. My instinct is to always order more of it! haha

I've been doing some more research on places to eat in this area. Do you have any thoughts on Masseys Restaurant, Hot Rocks Diner, Pete's Big Bite, and Red House?

Thanks in advance for your help!

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Banana Bread: simple and good

Joanne Chang's recipe from Flour Bakery.
It's simple, moist, and not overly sweet.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/gi...

Cheers!
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 16, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

How do you like your oatmeal?

Creamy peanut butter and honey stirred in with some sea salt sprinkled on top

Nutella swirled in with the oatmeal, a dash of cinnamon, and roasted hazelnuts sprinkled on top

Maple Syrup and toasted walnuts

Ovaltine or Milo mixed in

Caramelized bananas, dash of nutmeg

Crushed peanuts, toasted coconut, turbinado sugar. dash of salt

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 16, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

Got Any "Surprisingly Healthy" Recipes?

Whenever I need a 'Healthy' chocolate fix, I turn to this recipe. Make sure you use good quality cocoa (i.e. Valrohna or Guittard) and chocolate chips/chunks (i.e. Callebaut or Amedei). I don't use the gluten- free chocolate chips called for in the recipe.

http://recipes.health.com/recipes/100...

Cheers!
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 16, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

What were your last three cookbook purchases? - [Old]

Nigella Lawson's Kitchen
Peter Reinhart's The Bread Baker's Apprentice (finally!)
Rebecca Rather's The Pastry Queen Christmas: Big-hearted Holiday Entertaining, Texas Style

Have already made loads of recipes from Peter's book with many successes. He knows his bread!

Cheers!
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 16, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

Whitby/Durham restaurants that don't suck

iheartpie, which pizza would you recommend getting at Pizza Pino`s?

Thanks in advance!
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com/

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Pizza Pino
855 Westney Rd S, Ajax, ON L1S3M4, CA

Chowhound's Own Top 10 Restaurants of GTA

Estufarian, which dishes does L.A.B. do well? I've been meaning to try this restaurant for sometime. Is it like Colborne Lane which also dabbles in molecular gastronomy?

Thanks in advance for your help!
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

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Colborne Lane
45 Colborne Street, Toronto, ON M5E 1P8, CA

What are you baking these days? Part XIII/13 1/2/11 [old]

Thanks for this souschef! Now I have to buy more chestnuts.haha
I also love the lightly sweetened paste that you can find in specialty food stores. I could swim in the stuff. Also, it certainly makes baking with it a whole lot easier!
Speaking baking, I thought roasting whole chestnuts in the oven was the choice method (I read that it is supposed to impart more flavour), but boiling or steaming makes them easier to shell?

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Jan 06, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

What are you baking these days? Part XIII/13 1/2/11 [old]

They both sound amazing souschef! Thanks for the recipes. I may try the first one because I have such an affinity for chestnuts. But then again, the one with gianduja sounds divine and its decadence level is right up my alley.ah. decisions!

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 05, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

What are you baking these days? Part XIII/13 1/2/11 [old]

hmmm... I don't know exactly. I love being adventurous and experimenting with new ingredients i.e. a chestnut mousse cake or that chocolate torte from Dorie Greenspan that uses prunes
I also enjoy using classic ingredients to make a cake: rich dark chocolate (or white, a guilty pleasure because it's not "real" chocolate), peanut butter, pecans

Do you have any favourites souschef?

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 05, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

The Best Thing You Ever Ate: New Orleans

So unfortunate about August's gnocchi dish. However, I can vouch for the tangy goat cheesecake my father selected. The creamy rectangular prism had an assertive flavour and a crumbled crust sprinkled over the top (gave it a deconstructed look. While it was not the best dessert in New Orleans that we had, it was quite enjoyable.

Would have to agree with you on the Oyster/bacon sammy at Cochon. While I loved every bite of it, it's not a repeat dish for me either

Yes, go try the Stracci! We got the large size. It's so filling you don't need to follow it with a fish or red meat dish.

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

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Cochon
930 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70130

Jan 05, 2011
sugarcube in New Orleans

What bread[s] do you make for dinner? Is there a pattern to what you make or do you make your bread component according to what's for dinner? Recipes if you have winners please.

These divine buttery buns from King Arthur Flour are a cinch to make. Best of all, they have more butter slathered on top once they're taken out of the oven.
http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipe...

If you have time to tinker with yeast and let it rest for a longer period of time, I recommend trying the Parker House Rolls from Martha Stewart
http://www.marthastewart.com/recipe/p...

or Crescents from Baking Illustrated (the recipe is posted on my blog
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Cheers and Happy Baking!

Jan 05, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

French Toast, a procedure poll

I love rich and indulgent French Toast that uses heavy cream and eggs in one bowl (not dipped separately). When I don't have time to make it bread pudding style, I use this recipe from Martha Stewart.
http://www.marthastewart.com/recipe/c...
Challah is good but I recommend using brioche.
I sometimes use lemon zest and add it to the soaking mix. It really brightens up the dish.

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 05, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

What are you baking these days? Part XIII/13 1/2/11 [old]

Had some leftover buttermilk from my cupcake baking blitz, so I tried this Salt-kissed buttermilk cake from 101 Cookbooks. I used blueberries rather than raspberries and browned the butter before adding it to the mixture. It is the perfect snacking cake. Love that salty-sweet crunch on top too
http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/...

I'm also starting to look for a birthday cake recipe for little ol' me. So if you have any suggestions, please send away!

Cheers!
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 05, 2011
sugarcube in Home Cooking

The Best Thing You Ever Ate: New Orleans

I saw one episode of "The Best thing I ever ate" and one of the chefs, I think it was Aaron Sanchez, mentioned the gnocchi dish from August. It wasn't as spectacular as he chalked it up to be. The gnocchi were slightly mushy, instead of being tender and fluffy.
Our favourites in New Orleans was the humble looking but delicious fried oyster and bacon sandwich from Cochon. The saltiness cut through the richness of the oysters like a razorblade. They were the perfect compliment to one another. The buttery rolls at the beginning of the meal were incredibly addictive too.
Also, they make a mean Fried Chicken dish at Emeril's NOLA restaurant. So crispy on the outside and tender/juicy on the inside.
We also adored the stracci: torn pasta, oxtail ragu & fried chicken livers from Domenica. Fat pappardelle pieces of pasta helped to mop up the nest of tender ragu meat. Crispy-crunchy golf ball sized fried chicken livers lined the perimeter of the huge bowl of pasta. It was a hearty but addictive dish.

http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

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Cochon
930 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70130

Emeril's Restaurant
800 Tchoupitoulas, New Orleans, LA 70130

Domenica
123 Baronne Street, New Orleans, LA 70112

Jan 05, 2011
sugarcube in New Orleans

Two nights in New Orleans, near Sheraton on Canal Street -- want food I can eat only in NO.

Just returned from a Family Trip to New Orleans and we stayed at the Sheraton too!
Hopefully this can give you some good ideas:
http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7552...
I had a whole slew of other places (listed within the post's link) that are within walking distance from Sheraton, but many of them were closed because of the Christmas holiday. Fortunately, that won't be the case for you!

Happy Eating!
http://theavidbaker.wordpress.com

Jan 05, 2011
sugarcube in New Orleans

Walnut oil?

I've seen walnut oil in the size your looking for in the food and cookware section of Winners (they carry the fancy brands that major supermarkets have).

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Moist, rich cupcakes?

This is a fabulous recipe to use for cupcakes (just decrease the baking time):
http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

For a vanilla cupcake, I would use Ina Garten's Coconut cupcake recipe (just omit the coconut). They are akin to a rich and moist pound cake with a tender, dense crumb.
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/in...

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Dec 31, 2010
sugarcube in Home Cooking

Woodlot

Pinestripeprincess, the day we had the pie, it was with goose, hunks of ham, and root veggies. While the filling was creamy and delicious, the pastry nestled on top was limp (crust was too thick and had almost a gummy-chewy quality to it) and not nearly flaky enough.

I wish I had the same experience as you did with the pappardelle. Our dish failed to impress. The broken pieces of pasta were not a welcome sight and they were far too undercooked and caused the noodles to be too stiff in texture. However, we also chose the gnocchi. This dish was an absolute win, the creamy, melt in your mouth potato dumplings were smothered with smoked mozzarella, tangy tomato sauce, and sprinkled with parm reggiano.

In general, I'm not a fan of pork chops, but I appreciate how ours was cooked medium rare. The meat was tender and juicy. I also liked the interplay of the sweet fruit they used with the savoury meat (they used pieces of sauteed persimmons).

The mashed potatoes were so soft and billowy. However, I agree with you, I didn't taste the bone marrow either. Maybe we're not supposed to? Perhaps it's only supposed to impart texture and give body to the potatoes.

Dessert pastries are also hit and miss. Considering the praises given to the tarte tatin, the evening we had it, it didn't deliver the goods. The pastry was like cardboard and the caramel on the apples had an almost an acrid/burnt taste to it. However the fluffy marshmallow and blueberry-lemon tart was divine. We dove right into the dreamy item. Perfect marriage of crisp, buttery crust, tart-tangy filling and sweet topping.

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