December 15, 2007

Food in the News

Why are North Americans so obese? A cheeseburger surrounded by Krispy Kreme Donuts may explain a bit - Forbes

Once again, a successful woman is valued not for her accomplishments, but her body. Take a look at this article that discusses whether Nigella is too fat - Chow

How to pair raspberries or dill seeds? - FoodPairing

Kinky in the Kitchen

I am not much of a baker. I find it too time consuming and meticulous. I was traumatised by a terrible catering experience, where I was asked to make 10 desserts, and I now try to avoid it at all costs. These cookie cutters may change my attitude though. The Pipparkakan cutters claim to inspire a "lustful Christmas" complete with aphrodisiac baking recipes!

Gift Guide

Still looking for gift ideas for your favourite foodie? Chow has come up with an extensive list. As a collector of egg cups I adore the Cico ones with a spoon and salt castor. How adorable!

December 6, 2007

Discovering My Voice

Monica Wolfson recently mentioned me in her blog for the Windsor Star.

Thanks for the kind words!

December 3, 2007

Grilled Haloumi Cheese

Haloumi is amazing cheese. It is dense, salty and - to use a Nigella word - "squidgy". It is simple to prepare and the way I like best is to grill it.

Grilled Haloumi with Olive Oil and Thyme
1/2 lb Haloumi cheese, cut into 12 rectangular blocks
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
2 T fresh thyme, chopped
6 (6- to 8-inch) wooden skewers

>Push 2 blocks of cheese lengthwise onto each skewer, then cover skewers with cold water and soak 1 hour.

Stir together oil and thyme in a 13- by 9-inch shallow dish.

While cheese soaks, prepare grill for cooking. Preheat burners on high, covered, 10 minutes, then reduce heat to moderately high.

Drain cheese skewers on paper towels and pat dry, then grill, covered on a well-oiled grill rack, turning until evenly browned, 3 to 7 minutes total.

Add cheese skewers to thyme oil and turn to coat.

If you aren't able to grill outdoors, cheese can be cooked in an oiled well-seasoned large ridged grill pan over moderate heat.

Please take some time to read my article on the Food Network about a few Middle Eastern stores, bakeries and restaurants in Windsor.

December 2, 2007

Walkerville Brewery

Walkerville Brewery makes beer that should be a source of pride for Windsor, Ontario. For more details on its history, please read my article on the Food Network website.

December 1, 2007

Food in the News

Why do so few women run kitchens in prominent restaurants? - New York Magazine

How to order wine - Seattle Times

New Windsor bakery - Cakes By Renee! - Windsor Eats

How do you feel about loud noise in restaurants? - Blogelicious (Windsor Star)

Comparing frozen french fries...- Boston Globe

Recipe Reviews

After being on hiatus for over two weeks the only theme I have for these recipes is ketchup!

Get it, catch-up. Yep, think I'll just stick to food.

Celebrity Gingerbread Criminals - CHOW (picture credit goes to them as well)
Smoked Salmon Pizza - Toronto Star

Deep Fried Hannukah Treats - CHOW

Mushroom and Pancetta Soup - CHOW

Roasted Mushroom and Asparagus Salad with Chili Mustard Vinaigrette - Toronto Star

Cooking Club - Appetizers

November's cooking club was held at Jillian's place and the theme was appetizers. Our intention was to try out new recipes at this meeting and then meet up in Mid-December to do an appetizer exchange with the recipes that we thought were most successful.

The common thread throughout the evening seemed to be "deep frying". How could something deep fried be bad?

Our menu included:

Jillian - Mulled Cider (see below) and Mulled Red Wine

Jillian - Italian Rice Balls (see below)

Dana - Zucchini Fritters with Dipping Sauce

Danielle - Pissaladiere *I added roasted red peppers

Rosemary - Spiced Pear Raviloi with White Chocolate Mascarpone Dip

Mulled Cider

3 c apple cider

3 allspice berries

1/4 t nutmeg

4 cloves

2 cinnamon sticks

1/2 c Granny Smith Apples - sliced thin

1 1/2 c Spiced Rum

Place all ingredients in a saucepan and simmer on medium heat for 10-15 minutes. Strain before serving, and serve warm.

Italian Rice Balls


5 cups canned low-salt chicken broth

1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms,* rinsed
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

2 1/2 cups finely chopped onions

12 ounces crimini mushrooms, finely chopped

6 large garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoon minced fresh basil

1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano

1 1/2 cups arborio rice or medium-grain white rice

1/2 cup dry white wine

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Bring broth to simmer in heavy medium saucepan. Add porcini and simmer until just tender, about 2 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer mushrooms to plate. Cool mushrooms and chop finely. Cover broth and keep warm over very low heat.
Melt butter with oil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add onions; sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Add crimini mushrooms; sauté until tender, about 8 minutes. Add porcini, garlic and both herbs; sauté 4 minutes.

Add rice; stir 2 minutes. Add wine; cook until liquid is absorbed, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Add 1 cup hot broth; simmer until liquid is absorbed, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Continue to cook until rice is just tender and mixture is creamy, adding more broth by cupfuls and stirring often, about 30 minutes. Mix in 1/2 cup cheese.


3 cups chilled risotto (see above)

12 (1/2-inch) cubes fresh mozzarella (about 1 oz total)

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 cup fine dry bread crumbs
About 8 cups vegetable oil for frying

Roll chilled risotto into 12 (1 1/2-inch) balls using wet hands. Poke a small hole in center of each ball and insert a cube of cheese, then re-form into a ball.
Put flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in 3 separate bowls. Dredge 1 risotto ball in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in egg, letting excess drip off, then dredge in bread crumbs and transfer to a sheet of wax paper. Repeat with remaining balls.
Heat 1 1/2 to 2 inches oil in a 4- to 5-quart heavy pot until thermometer registers 360°F. Working in batches of 4, lower rice balls into oil with a slotted spoon and fry, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per batch. Transfer with slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Return oil to 360°F between batches. 3Let balls stand 2 minutes (for cheese to melt).


1 small onion, chopped coarsely

3 garlic cloves, chopped

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 red bell peppers, roasted

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves

In a skillet cook onion and garlic in 1 tablespoon oil over moderate heat, stirring, until softened. Transfer onion mixture to a food processor and add roasted peppers, basil, remaining 2 tablespoons oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Blend sauce until smooth and transfer to a small bowl.

(Sauce may be made up to 3 days ahead and chilled, covered.)

Spoon sauce on plate and serve rice ball on top.

In My Opinion...

I have been a terrible blogger lately. I apologise for the lag between posts.

On that note, I have decided to post some of my favourite eateries in Windsor, Ontario. I would love to hear your opinions on these places as well as suggestions of restos that you prefer!

Best Greasy Breakfast - The Velvet Restaurant

Best Place for an Intimate Dinner/Best Fine Dining/Best Wine List - Mamo Bistro

Best Place for Chicken Wings - Rock Bottom Bar and Grill

Best Pizza (this one was hard!!!) - Koolini and Riverside Tavern

Best Place to Grab a Beer - Kildare House

Best Place for Italian Food - Mezzo

Best Place for Ethiopian - Marathon

Best Place for Indian - India Palace

Best Place for Sushi - Teka

Best Place for Burgers - Gilligans

Best Place for Middle Eastern - El Mayor