Food With Legs Rotating Header Image

September, 2009:

Cottage Garden Pickle

The preserved Cottage Garden Pickle based on the recipe for Branston Pickle

The preserved Cottage Garden Pickle based on the recipe for Branston Pickle

Two minor inspirations can sometimes come together to form a major one.  I’m an unashamed anglophile and a ploughman’s lunch is one of my favourite pub meals.  Earlier in September a tweet by @ScottCanCook gave me the idea of making homemade Branston Pickle–the most typical savoury accompaniment to the bread, cheese, and onion (sometimes pickled, sometimes an apple or pear instead) that makes up a ploughman’s.  Recipes for Branston Pickle are a laundry list of vegetables especially those like swede, courgettes, and beetroot that the British have charmingly decided to call by a different name (that’s rutabaga, zucchini, and beets in North America). (more…)

Review: Caplansky’s

Along with what seemed like half of the city I accomplished one of my foodie to-do’s for September by visiting the new Caplansky’s location at 356 College St. (at College and Brunswick).  Note that google maps still thinks Caplansky’s is inside the Monarch Tavern several blocks further west on College.  I did not note this carefully enough and much hilarity (i.e. walking) ensued.

The beet-less borscht from Caplanskys

The beet-less borscht from Caplansky's

(more…)

Not Far From the Mason Jar

Canned spiced apple preserve ready for the cold room

Canned spiced apple preserve ready for the cold room

Thanks to Not Far From the Tree I have finally had the experience of picking fruit in an urban backyard.  Like many other Torontonians I was introduced to this organisation through Toronto Life’s 50 Reasons to Love Toronto article this spring.  The idea is so simple that I’m shocked it wasn’t implemented thirty years ago: Connect volunteer fruit pickers with the dozens of homeowners who have fruit trees in their backyards that go unpicked every year.  A third of each harvest goes to the tree’s owner, a third to the volunteer “gleaners”, and the final third is donated to a charitable community organisation.

(more…)

Review: Crown & Dragon

The three pound platter: Dragons Breath on the left, East Coast Donair on the right, and Smokin Gunn in the back.

The three pound platter: Dragon's Breath on the left, East Coast Donair on the right, and Smokin' Gunn in the back.

Almost ten years ago while an undergrad at U of T I had my first chicken wing and set the baseline for all future comparisons.  On Mondays and Wednesdays the Gabby’s across Bloor Street from the ROM offered good wings for half price.  The wings were larger than average, meaty and well-cooked.  The sauce was thin enough that it coated evenly and was spicy and vinegary without any reference to tomatoes or ketchup.  The level of heat was calibrated in a much more useful way than is normal: mild had a bit of heat instead of being totally insipid; medium was quite spicy and would pass for hot elsewhere; and hot was verging on painful.  My tastes have matured, memories are always more pleasant than reality and things have gone downhill for Gabby’s (especially in the service department) but the memory of their wings is still the example against which I judge all others.

(more…)

Apple Beignets: Won’t keep the doctor away

Two apple beignets with a scoop of vanilla ice cream

Two apple beignets with a scoop of vanilla ice cream

I would have to say that my favourite fruit is pineapple.  But only in a one-bite Pepsi taste test kind of way.  It’s too sweet to eat every day (though I tried while I lived in residence during my undergrad days) and definitely not convenient enough for midday snacking. So, if I were forced to commit to one fruit for the rest of my life it would have to be apples.  Apples are healthy, come in a variety of delicious flavours, and are extremely convenient.  Consider that my way of explaining this third post about apples in two weeks.

(more…)