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Anything But Mundane Monday!

Today was a sisterly-fun-get-together day! We had all been so busy with school finishing up, studying for exams etc… I rounded up the troops because I had gotten us tickets to City Line (we had missed the boat on Steven & Chris). I had been telling them that we had to be there at 9am and I only realized last night that in fact it was 9:30, but given how one (or more) of us is always running late, I thought it best not to say anything. It worked out nicely because while waiting for Lucy I got to leisurely eat cake while the two of them ran around like crazy because they thought we were late and they could not pull themselves together. I just kept eating my cake. We were at Yonge subway station and they were like “oh no! It’s 2 minutes to 9! Do you think we can make it?” and I just smiled. The gig was up. Ahahahahaha. Heck, we even had time to go to Tim Hortons.

After the taping they were giving away prizes in a raffle (tickets had been given out when we arrived). We conferred and decided we did not want the lawnmower & weed-whacker. Firstly we wanted the fancy toaster oven, back up we would get the basket of chocolates. The first person to win took the lawnmower & weed-whacker, fine by us. They called the second number and Lucy and Camilla were all excited it was mostly their numbers, but then the final one was not. It was mine. I yelped and screamed “I want the oven!”  and pointed at it. Everyone laughed. Little did they know we had gotten there by transit. We got our pictures taken with the host and we left.

It was raining. We were hungry. All three of us tried carrying the (rather large, it can fit a 13inch pizza) oven in various configurations. Needless to say, we got more than a few stares while we walked through the Eaton Centre and down Queen Street. Where were we heading when we were so hungry? Hmm, oh I don’t know, just the best Indian buffet at Little India according to BlogTO. Which just happens to be next door to the place I usually go to, so I almost felt like I was cheating. Was it the best? Not much differentiated it from next door. My favourite menu item was the curry chick peas, partly because it was the spiciest. For dessert they had what was like a timbit soaked in honey. Delicious, but so sweet it made my teeth hurt. So I only ate one. (Plate 1: from top right: naan, butter chicken, curry chicken, tandoori chicken, rice)

(Plate 2: from top right, cucumbers & spinach, curry chick peas, more butter chicken, chicken pakora, naan, chicken wing)

(Dessert plate: from top right, honeyball cake thing and fruits)

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Can’t Talk… Eating

With the holidays come a lot of opportunities to stuff ones face with reckless abandon to the point of illness. Illness combined with many a social calling and the subsequent food coma laziness has led to another one of my occasional compilation posts! Yay! Who doesn’t like reading about something I ate a month ago? Good times.

Best Chocolate:

I happened to have been at SOMA over the Christmas break and the Mayan hot chocolate had given my wallet a wallop, a wallop it could barely withstand after Christmas shopping. Unfortunately I had to decline getting the best chocolate in the city to go with the best hot chocolate in the city. Also it would have been total overkill and I doubt that enjoyable. As luck would have it, Brent got a SOMA chocolate for Christmas from his aunt, and being the nice guy that he is he saved it for us to share, only after threatening to eat it himself. Verdict? Amazing. I am not a fan of dark chocolate… that us, unless it is from SOMA. It was weird because it had chunks of sea salt and honeyed pumpkin seeds, but weird in a good way. A nice alternative to the same-old same-old of nuts being the crunch in your chocolate. Would I ever eat it again? But of course! I just would not pay. That is some damn expensive chocolate. And there is no picture of it because I ate it without even thinking.

Best Chicken Burger:

This one is best so far in my opinion, because apparently that category has not been announced yet. DIBS. Big Smoke Burger (formerly Craft Burger) does chicken burgers right. What do I mean by right? I mean grilled. I mean not breaded. I mean little else on top of my burger other than some seasonings. I want it to taste like chicken. Big Smoke achieves this with high accolades, delicious. I even ate lettuce, lettuce that was not shredded into tiny indiscernible bits that I cannot taste. And we just so happened to enjoy our lunch in the new Eaton Centre food court, which is not all that special. We got our burgers on plastic plates rather than in a paper bag but it is nothing to crow about.

Best Ethiopian:

I cannot say I have the best memories of this late lunch, actually more of a dinner, at Nazareth. For one, I was on the cusp of having a horrid cold kick in so my head felt all funny. And for two, I had not eaten lunch anticipating eating with Brent, having totally forgotten that the Ethiopian place opens after 4pm. At what time, we are still not sure. The week before we had walked by it and it was closed (so we had Best Schnitzel, see previous post) and on our way back (after 4pm) we saw that it was open. So that was really all we had to go on as we headed out. Thank God it was open. But, it was also full. We had to stand around by the entrance because we couldn’t sit at the bar thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Jerk. What did they do to earn such unfortunate names? They sat at the two middle bar stools, leaving one on each end alone. Just perfect for other pairs, getting to shout at each other across another couple. Eventually a table cleared out and we just sat down, it did not look like anyone from the restaurant was going to seat us. Except we were seated beside a loud TV and from the other side of the bar there was odd music playing. Add in my exhaustion from the cold and not having eaten in 5 hours and we did not exactly have world-class dinner conversation. We had already decided well ahead of time what to order, the vegetarian platter on a recommendation from my sister, on the pretext that you got to try more food.

The food arrived maybe 20-30 minutes later and it was enormous. The plate was the size of the entire table top and featured the pancake-bread on one side and the food (rows of chickpeas, something and something) and then a lettuce garnish. We also each got a pancake-bread on the side. The food was barely set down before us and already it was a giant mess of eating. I think this has to have been one of the most fun foods to eat ever. You rip off a piece of bread and use it to scoop up some food and chow down.

The only complaint I have is that the spiced tea was not available and my back-up choice, Ethiopian coffee was either not on the menu or it was the $10 “specialty coffee” which is ridiculous. Especially given that with tip the meal cost $12. It was more than enough food for both of us. And I would post the picture I took, alas there is nothing to see. It was dark in the restaurant. So here is a picture someone else took, it says it is from the same place, but our plate was a different colour.

Best Portugeuse:

This one was unintentional. We set out to go to Bakerbots (Best new bakery 2011) and One Love (Best something or other, I cannot find it) and we made it about 2 blocks before deciding it was too cold to be outside. We caved and instead ate at our “cold weather pick” (there are a few places a few blocks from Brent’s house for these kinds of days) which was Portuguese food. Bairrada Churrasqueira was delicious. And not just because I was so insanely happy to be inside out of the cold. The food portions were really huge, too huge in fact for me to even finish. It was the rice that was overkill. But the chicken? It was so tasty! It was on a skewer with onions (blech) and red peppers (which soaked up some chicken flavour) and had a nice crispy outside along the edges from the grill. And I also had to steal a bite of Brent’s BBQ chicken. I did not know chicken could possibly be made to taste this good, you think it can only go so far, but this place outdid that.

Crepes:

Not the best crepes, but a good crepe nonetheless. We went back to Yellow Cup Cafe (apparently my love of crepes is genetic, I get it from my dad) to celebrate my dad’s birthday. Last time we had gone there was for Father’s Day when I tackled the mammoth fruit crepe that came with 5 (at least) servings of fruit. This time I narrowed things down a bit. I opted for the apples & cinnamon crepe. But I caved and did not ask for it to be sans whipped cream and ice cream. Only a poor choice in hindsight when I tried to work out later and was too full. The apples were poached and sprinkled with cinnamon, it was amazing. Hell, I could have eaten the apples on their own like that.

**COMING SOON:

A review on the new Bulk Barn downtown! It is finally here! 10 years of complaining but finally, and then once PINK in the Eaton Centre opens I will never have to leave the downtown core ever again.

 

 

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*sigh*

I had this great idea for a see-through toaster, for people like me who don’t really pay attention to the setting and just pop the toast out to see if it is toasted to their liking and continue as such until it meets their high toast standards. I was going to chronicle my fascination and interest in toasters from the toaster we found at the cottage that we were going to smash apart to see the inner bits (which ended up being rescued by my friends mom and used for the next day’s breakfast) to the Toaster Project book to that time I broke the toaster because a poltergeist put a lighter inside, which promptly imploded gently. But nooo…. apparently someone stole my idea and is selling it for an inordinate amount of money. Who would spend almost $300 on a toaster?! Sadly, if I had the money, I would totally buy it.

It would go great with my future (not futuristic, simply “to be acquired in the future”) electric crepe maker. What? I didn’t tell you? Oh yes, I was in the Eaton Centre food court and I walked by that crepe place I am so fond of… and I stopped in my tracks, and mid-sentence let out an expletive laden exclamation. They were selling those round things that they use to make crepes!! Since I had initially seen one I had always assumed that I would be buying one from a restaurant owner or begging a restaurant supplier to sell me just one, or two, depends. But now, Crepe De Licious is selling them for $150, whihc seems like a reasonable price given I was expecting to be paying upwards of $500, at least. The absolute best part of the whole thing? It comes with that little spatula-rake thingy to smooth it out!!!

Alls I need is a chef’s hat & apron… oh and a ton of money. But once I have the hat & apron, I am halfway there! Right?

 
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Posted by on December 7, 2011 in Adventures of Pinka!, Uncategorized

 

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Lesson Learned

I have had a hankering for sushi lately, so yesterday during my (awful, awful) 3 hour break between classes I met up with Fabio to go to the new Urban Eatery at the Eaton Centre for lunch (I also had wanted to eat there for a while now). Last time I had sushi I had wanted to really go all out, I had tried to order unagi and uni (eel and sea urchin). Alas, Sushi on Bloor was out of sea urchin, so I had to shelve that one for later. Akashiro, where me and Fabio went for sushi lunch just happened to have uni on the menu. I could not resist, my curiosity was peaked. I also ordered the Real Crab Meat (as opposed to just Crab Meat), alas, as seems to happen to me every time now, they were out of it. So I had the miso soup instead to go with my uni. I was wary of having the miso soup because there was seaweed in it, which just sounded so unappetizing (yet somehow, a spiny sharp weird-looking sea urchin intrigued me). It was actually really good, even the seaweed!

The uni shashimi however, was not so palatable. First off, the pieces were huge! The first one I bit in half, and it promptly fell apart, leading to a hilarious minute of me trying to pick up the pieces with my chopsticks. All that effort to make my face scrunch. Sea urchin is bitter and weird and it does not taste like food. It should not be considered food. It is up there as one of the worst things I have ever eaten. But I ate the other piece because the first time around on the first bite it was all rice and seaweed and the second was mostly sea urchin. This time I popped the whole thing in my mouth. And proceeded to chew. And chew. And chew some more. Fabio asked me what I had ordered, I could not answer, I kept holding my finger up to say “hold on” and kept chewing. He started laughing and I was like “oh crap” if he makes me laugh this might not end well. Thankfully it tasted so bad, there was no way I could laugh. It was awful as a whole as well. And I could taste it in my mouth for a long time afterwards, a silent reminder that I should not always be so keen on satiating my curiosity.

Akashiro at least gets props for having low prices and good miso soup (I think, I have only had it the one time so far), it was only $2 for the soup!

 

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